(Greek: Άγια Φιλοθέη) (1522-1589) was born in Athens to an illustrious and wealthy family. Against her will, she was married to a cruel man. When he died three years later, Philothei gave away her worldly belongings, took up the monastic life and established a convent, in which she became a mother to her disciples. Many women enslaved and abused by the Muslim Turks in harems also ran to her for refuge. Because of this, in 1589, the Mohammedan rulers of Ottoman Greece became enraged and came to her convent and dragged her by force out of the church. They beat her cruelly and after a few days, she died.
Propers for Philothei of Athens - 19 February - Abbess and Martyr
ALMIGHTY and everlasting God, who didst strengthen thy blessed martyr Philothei with the virtue of constancy in faith and truth: Grant us in like manner for love of thee to despise the prosperity of this world, and to fear none of its adversities; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
The Epistle - 2 Esdras 2:42-48.
I ESDRAS saw upon the mount Sion a great people, whom I could not number, and they all praised the Lord with songs. And in the midst of them there was a young man of a high stature, taller than all the rest, and upon every one of their heads he set crowns, and was more exalted; which I marvelled at greatly. So I asked the angel, and said, Sir, what are these? He answered and said unto me, These be they that have put off the mortal clothing, and put on the immortal, and have confessed the name of God; now are they crowned, and receive palms. Then said I unto the angel. What young person is it that crowneth them, and giveth them palms in their hands? So he answered and said unto me, It is the Son of God, whom they have confessed in the world. Then began I greatly to commend them that stood so stiffly for the name of the Lord. Then the angel thy way, and tell my people what manner of things, and how great wonders of the Lord thy God,. thou hast seen.
The Gospel - St. Matthew 10:16-22.
BEHOLD, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless. as doves. But beware of men: for they will deliver you up to the councils, and they will scourge you in their synagogues; and ye shall be brought before governors and kings. for my sake, for a witness to them and the Gentiles. But when they deliver you up, be not anxious how or what ye-shall speak: for it shall be given you in that same hour what ye shall speak. For it is not ye that speak, but the Spirit of your Father which speaketh in you. And the brother shall deliver up the brother to death, and the father the child: and the children shall rise up against their parents, and cause-them to be put to death. And ye shall be hated of all men for my name's sake: but he that endureth to the end shall! be saved.
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