NOVEMBER 24, 2019 - "SUFFERING FOR THE LORD"
SAINT KATHERINE was born in the late third century in Egypt. She lived in an era when Christianity, after withstanding centuries of persecution, was finally beginning to get the “upper hand” over various forms of pagan worship. Still, Christians were constantly called upon to defend their Faith and risk the prospect of martyrdom in the process.
Even at an early age, Katherine displayed a wonderful ability to verbalize her feelings about the Lord she so loved. At the age of 18, she engaged in fierce public debates in the city of Alexandria. After one such encounter, when she thoroughly humiliated the most powerful pagan orators, Katherine was arrested by the Emperor and accused of being an “enemy of the state.”
After she refused an offer of clemency in exchange for denying Christ, it was decided that a public example should be made of Katherine, hoping to discourage other Christians from speaking out so strongly against their pagan beliefs. She was placed on a revolving wheel of spikes and tortured in this cruel and barbaric manner until she died.
The year of Katherine’s death is thought to be 311 A.D. Her relics are preserved in the famous monastery at Mt. Sinai that bears her name.
The words of her Troparion exemplify her life: “I SUFFER FOR YOUR SAKE TO REIGN WITH YOU, LORD.”