Prayer Service to Holy Great Martyr Theodore the Tyro
On first Friday of Great Lent, the Church remembers the holy Great Martyr Theodore the Tyro. This great man of faith suffered for Christ in the year 306. He refused to offer sacrifice to idols when asked and was thus condemned to burning.
Half a century later under the Emperor Julian the Apostate, the Roman Empire has been under another round of persecution of Christians. Wanting to commit an outrage upon the Christians during the first week of Great Lent, the Emperor secretly commanded the Constantinople’s city-commander to sprinkle all the food in the marketplaces with the blood offered to idols. Holy Great Martyr Theodore appeared in a dream to Archbishop Eudoxius and told to inform all the Christians that no one should buy anything at the marketplaces, but rather to eat cooked wheat with honey (kolyva). The Lord, through His holy Great Martyr Theodore, delivered His people and they were not contaminated.
The saint’s remembrance is a reminder how the faithful, by adhering to fasting and Lord’s commandments, place themselves under special Divine protection.
Protopresbyter Alexander Dolbunov, Dean of Sarov Deanery, concelebrated with the monastery’s clergy at the Liturgy of Pre-Sanctified Gifts and prayer service to Great Martyr Theodore the Tyro with blessing of kolyvo (cooked wheat with honey). The services were held at Trinity Cathedral. Upon completion of services, kolyvo, blessed in memory of Saint Theodore the Tyro, was distributed among the faithful.
After the services, the faithful, headed by Mother Hegumenia, walked along the Holy Kanavka.