The Holy Martyrs Gaiane, Rhipsimia and 35 other nuns.

Commemorated September 30 in the Orthodox Christian Menaion

From the Prologue

They were all slain by Tiridates for their faith in Christ. Holy Rhipsimia was of rare beauty, and the Emperor Diocletian therefore wanted her-for his wife. This-was the cause of the suffering of all thirty-seven of them. Rhipsimia refused to go to the Emperor, because she was already consecrated to Christ her bridegroom. Then Tiridates began to urge her to go with him, for the king was as though intoxicated by her beauty, but Rhipsimia resisted the pagan king with all her strength, 'and he who was victorious over the princes of the Goths and routed the Persians could not overcome one virgin of Christ'. The furious king put her to harsh torture (her tongue was cut out, her stomach cut open and her entrails spilled out), during which Rhipsimia gave her soul into God's hands. After that, the other nuns were seized and beheaded with the sword. The famous monastery of Echmiazdin, near Erivan. was built over their relics, and became the chief spiritual centre of Armenia for many centuries.

From The Prologue From Ochrid by Bishop Nikolai Velimirovich
©1985 Lazarica Press, Birmingham UK

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