Commemorated on December 31st
Apodosis of the Feast of the Saviour's Nativity. St Melania the Younger of Rome
On this day, we celebrate the Apodosis of the Feast of the Nativity of Christ, and the service for December 25 is chanted as set forth in the Typicon. The Service to St Melania is chanted on December 30.
St Melania the Younger, who was born in 388 AD, was the grand-daughter of St Melania the Elder. Her father Publicola was an Eparch of Rome.
St Melania the Younger was joined in wedlock to a husband and became the mother of two children, both of which she lost shortly thereafter. Thus, having agreed with her husband to pass the rest of their lives in abstinence and chastity, and taking her mother Albina with her, she went off to Africa. They ransomed 8000 captives; furthermore, they built two monasteries, one for men and one for women, in the city of Tagaste, which was in the district of Tunis. After seven years, they moved to Jerusalem. Thereafter Melania shut herself up in a small and narrow hermitage by the Mount of Olives, and wearing away her body away with fasting and vigil, she reposed in 434 AD.
Dismissal Hymn and Kontakion of the Feast
Your Nativity, O Christ our God, has shined the light of knowledge upon the world; for thereby they that worshipped the stars were instructed by a star to worship You, the Sun of Righteousness, and to know You, the dayspring from on high. O Lord, glory to You.