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The Holy Martyr Bassa and Her Sons; Theognis, Agapius, and Pistus

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August 21

Reading:

The Martyrs were from Edessa of Macedonia. Bassa was the wife of a certain Valerian, a priest of the idols, to whom she bore three sons and raised them in piety. She was betrayed with her sons to the proconsul by her own husband; each of her sons was tormented before her and beheaded. For refusing to worship the idols, she was imprisoned, cast into water and then fire, was stoned, and remaining unharmed, was brought to the temple to worship the idols. Laying hold upon the idol of Zeus, she overturned it and broke it to pieces. After being preserved through further torments, she was beheaded, about the year 290, in the reign of Maximian.

Apolytikion of Martyr Bassa and her Children in the Fourth Tone

Thy Martyrs, O Lord, in their courageous contest for Thee received as the prize the crowns of incorruption and life from Thee, our immortal God. For since they possessed Thy strength, they cast down the tyrants and wholly destroyed the demons' strengthless presumption. O Christ God, by their prayers, save our souls, since Thou art merciful.

Kontakion of Martyr Bassa and her Children in the Plagal of the Fourth Tone

Valiantly following the footsteps of Solomone, thou gavest courage to thy sons to suffer martyrdom, O divinely-blessed Bassa, thou rock of courage. And when thou hadst thrice endured thy three sons' sufferings, thou through many grievous torments wast joined unto them. Hence, we cry to you: Rejoice, O victors in martyrdom.