Eudokia of Heliopolis
The holy and glorious Martyr Eudokia of Heliopolis (d.107) was an ascetic nun who died under the persecution of the governor Vicentius. The Orthodox Church commemorates her martyrdom on March 1. Eudokia (Gr: Ευδοκία) means goodwill.
She began life as a pagan, a Samaritan woman who lived in Phoenicia (present-day Lebanon). Eudokia wasted her early years living a sinful life. With her blinding beauty she led many people into sin and amassed a great fortune.
She was introduced to the Christian faith by the monk Germanos, who was staying at a neighboring house while she was suffering a serious illness. Under his guidance she became a Christian. She was baptized by Bishop Theodotos after she had a heavenly vision. In her vision, she saw an Angel of the Lord leading her to heaven while many angels were rejoicing. She also saw a shadowy figure howling because he had been cheated because Eudokia became a Christian.
Eudokia discarded her previous life to become a nun. She built a monastery near the city of Baalbeck, also known as Heliopolis, and ministered to the many people who came to receive assistance. Because of her beauty, she also had many suitors. One suitor named Philostratos was persistent enough to seek her out in the hope of securing favor before her fortune had been dissipated. Eudokia refused to help him, and, when in his anger he seemed struck dead by the Lord, she prayed to God for his recovery. Brought back to his senses, he was easily converted to Christianity.
Troparion (Fifth Tone)
- O Eudoxia, when godly fear entered your heart,
- You abandoned the glory of the world,
- And hastened to God the Word.
- You took his yoke on your flesh
- And shed your blood in a contest surpassing nature.
- O glorious martyr,
- Entreat Christ our God to grant us his great mercy.
Kontakion (Fourth Tone)
- He who was pleased to raise you from the depths of perdition
- To the summit of godliness,
- Has also made you illustrious through your contest.
- He has granted you the grace of healing,
- O righteous martyr and equal to the angels, beseech him to save us, O Eudoxia.
Apolytikion (Plagal of the Fourth Tone)
- In thee the image was preserved with exactness, O Mother;
- for taking up thy cross, thou didst follow Christ,
- and by thy deeds thou didst teach us to overlook the flesh,
- for it passeth away, but to attend to the soul since it is immortal.
- Wherefore, O righteous Eudokia, thy spirit rejoiceth with the Angels.
Kontakion (Fourth Tone)
- When thou wast brought up from the mire of transgression,
- like a most precious stone whose brightness is darkened,
- repentance made thee shine again with godliness;
- and when thou hadst reached the height of ascetical striving.
- Christ made thee illustrious with the glory of contest,
- and hath bestowed on thee His grace to heal,
- O wise Eudocia, thou rival of angel-kind.
Eudocia, Eudoxia, Evdokia, Evdocia
External Links and Sources
- St. Eudokia, Holy Martyr from the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Australia website
- The Holy Monastic Martyress Eudocia from a translation of the Mesyatseslov of Saints Lives from the 1978-1979 Volumes 2-3 of the Moscow Patriarchate texts, the Reference Book for Clergy-Servers (in MS Word format)
- Eudokia the Martyr of Heliopolis from the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America website
- The Holy Monastic Martyr Eudokia from the Orthodox Church in America website