Saint Marina’s father was a pagan in the third century, and her mother died giving birth. Her foster mother taught her about Jesus Christ. The faith took root in Marina, and she vowed to remain a virgin and to one day become a martyr. For this, her father despised her and the pagan ruler of the land, admiring her purity, wanted her for his wife. She refused, and when he demanded that she sacrifice to idols, she responded that his gods were dead, did not breathe, and were unaware of honour or dishonour.
She was beaten and bloodied by rods, with thorns, and imprisoned. Then she was suspended, and her sides raked with iron nails. She prayed and to her it was as if another person were being tortured. Again imprisoned, the devil tried to frighten her three times. Once as a dragon he attempted to devour her, holding half of her body in his mouth. Praying, she made the sign of the cross and the beast was torn apart and vanished.
Again, he appeared as a man, black as night. She seized his hair and beat him with a hammer until he left her sight. Again, he grabbed her and threatened to kill her if she would not stop praying. She whipped him, and finally a light appeared from Heaven from a cross. A white dove told her to rejoice for she had vanquished the enemy, and she was completely healed.
The next day, when she would not admit that the pagan gods had healed her, she was burned with torches and then they attempted to drown her in a cauldron. When she prayed, an earthquake hit and a dove landed on her head with a crown in its beak. A voice said receive from the right hand of the most high this heavenly crown. All heard this voice, and they feared and many believed. Before she was beheaded, she taught those close by and prayed. Then another earthquake knocked all the people to the ground. Again, she heard a voice to take courage, and she forced the executioner to behead her. Her relics are now in a church in Athens, Greece, and her hand is at the monastery of Vatopedi on Mt. Athos.
Miracles by her Holy Relics have been witnessed by Christians as well as Moslems.
Dismissal Hymn (Plagal of the Fourth Tone)
O Glorious Marina, once betrothed to the Logos, you relinquished all worldly concerns and brilliantly gave struggle as a virginal beauty. You soundly trounced the invisible enemy who appeared to you, O Champion, and you are now the world’s wellspring of healing grace.
Kontakion (Third Tone)
Adorned with the beauty of Purity, O Virgin; crowned with the stigmata of martyrdom; stained with the blood of your struggles; and brilliantly radiant with healing wonders, piously, O Marina, you received the trophy of victory for your struggles.
We Also Celebrate Today:
Veronika and Speratos the Martyrs
Kenelm, Prince of Mercia