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Monday, September 4, 2017

Holy Martyr Jerusalem and Her Three Sons Sekendos, Sekendikos and Kegoros

St. Jerusalem and her Three Sons (Feast Day - September 4);
14th century icon in the Byzantine and Christian Museum of Athens

Saint Jerusalem was from Alexandria and she had three sons. After the death of her husband, she and her sons traveled to many places preaching Christ to the pagans and reached as far as Rome, the capital of the Roman Empire at the time.

Continuing her journey she went to Athens, Boeotia, Thessaly and finally arrived in Beroia, where she became a nun, bringing monasticism to the area. There she continued her missionary activities, leading many idolaters to the Christian faith. Thus she was delivered to the duke of Thessaloniki Kindianos, who came himself to Beroia to interrogate her. Seeing her steadfastness he ordered her to be tortured. Her sons were also killed by torture: one was dragged behind horses, the second was beaten to death with sticks, and the third was forced to put on a heated helmet. In the end their holy mother was beheaded some time between the years 276 and 282. 

The skull of Saint Jerusalem is kept in the Church of Saint Anthony, patron saint of Beroia, and on September 4th their memory is celebrated with festivities in this church, and also in Kampochori, Alexandria.

Apolytikion in the Fourth Tone
O four-numbered band of athletes of Christ, Sekendikos, Sekendos with Kegoros, together let us honor, along with their mother, Jerusalem the divine, who is hymned together with them, having contested together, ever intercede for us before the Holy Trinity.

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