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Melkite Greek Catholic Church Information Center

TheHoly Protomartyr and Equal of the Apostles Thecla

According to ancient tradition, The Holy Protomartyr and Equal of the Apostles Thecla was converted by St. Paul at Iconium of Lycaonia and at Antioch of Pisidia. The Holy Protomartyr and Equal of the Apostles Thecla is considered to be the first female martyer by many experts.

Biography

24 September - The Holy Protomartyr and Equal of the Apostles Thecla

The Holy Protomartyr and Equal of the Apostles Thecla is the Thecla in the apocryphal "Acta Pauli et Theclae" (Acts of Paul and Thecla). Our knowledge of her is derived exclusively from "Acta Pauli et Theclae", which appeared about 180 A.D.

The Holy Protomartyr and Equal of the Apostles Thecla was a young noble virgin who listened to The Holy, Glorious and Illustrious Prince of the Apostles Paul's "discourse on virginity" and became The Holy, Glorious and Illustrious Prince of the Apostles Paul's follower and a Disciple of his teachings and Ministry. The Holy Protomartyr and Equal of the Apostles Thecla's mother and her fiancÚ Thamyris became concerned The Holy Protomartyr and Equal of the Apostles Thecla would follow The Holy, Glorious and Illustrious Prince of the Apostles Paul's demand "one must fear only one God and live in chastity", and punished both The Holy, Glorious and Illustrious Prince of the Apostles Paul and The Holy Protomartyr and Equal of the Apostles Thecla.

The Holy Protomartyr and Equal of the Apostles Thecla was miraculously saved from burning at the stake by the onset of a storm and traveled with The Holy, Glorious and Illustrious Prince of the Apostles Paul to Antioch of Pisidia. There a nobleman named Alexander desired The Holy Protomartyr and Equal of the Apostles Thecla and attempted to take her by force. The Holy Protomartyr and Equal of the Apostles Thecla fought him off, assaulting him in the process, and was put on trial for assaulting a nobleman. The Holy Protomartyr and Equal of the Apostles Thecla was sentenced to be eaten by wild beasts, but was again saved by a series of miracles when the female beasts protected her against her male aggressors.

With the consent of The Holy, Glorious and Illustrious Prince of the Apostles Paul, The Holy Protomartyr and Equal of the Apostles Thecla had acted as a "female Apostle" in proclaiming the Gospel.

The Holy Protomartyr and Equal of the Apostles Thecla dedicated herself to perpetual virginity as a result of listening to the preaching of the The Holy, Glorious and Illustrious Prince of the Apostles Paul.

Kontakion, Troparion, Exapostilarion, and Vespers Sticheron or Doxastichon

Kontakion of the Preparation (Tone 8)
Jesus, your lamb Thecla cries out to You with great love: " O my Bridegroom, I long for you in great pain, I am crucified with You, and in baptism I am buried with You. I suffer for your sake in order to reign with You, I die for You in order to live in You. Accept me as an immaculate victim, since I am immolated for your love" Through her intercession, O Merciful One, save our souls! or O glorious Thekla, virginity was your splendor, The crown of martyrdom your adornment and the faith you trust! You turned a burning fire into refreshing dew, And with your prayers appeased pagan fury, O First Woman Martyr!

Troparion (TONE 4)
You were enlightened by the words of Paul, O Bride of God, Thekla, And your faith was confirmed by Peter, O Chosen One of God. You became the first sufferer and martyr among women, By entering into the flames as into a place of gladness. For when you accepted the Cross of Christ, The demonic powers were frightened away. O all-praised One, intercede before Christ God that our souls may be saved.

More information

The Holy Protomartyr and Equal of the Apostles Thecla Saint Joseph Melkite Greek Catholic Church, Lawrence, Massachusetts, Click on Feasts of Major Saints

The Holy Protomartyr and Equal of the Apostles Thecla Catholic Encyclopedia

Ikon

The Holy Protomartyr and Equal of the Apostles Thecla Saint Joseph Melkite Greek Catholic Church, Lawrence, Massachusetts, Click on Feasts of Major Saints


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Melkite Greek Catholic Church Information Center
Martha Liles
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O God of all spirits and of all flesh, who have destroyed death, overcome the devil, and given life to the world: grant, O Lord, to the souls of your servants Bucky and Shirley, who has departed from this life, that it may rest in a place of light, in a place of happiness, in a place of peace, where there is no pain, no grief, no sighing. And since You are a gracious God and the Lover of Mankind, forgive him/her every sin he/she has committed by thought, or word, or deed, for there is not a man who lives and does not sin : You alone are without sin, your righteousness is everlasting, and your word is true. You are the Resurrection and the Life, and the repose of your departed servants Bucky and Shirley. O Christ our God, and we send up glory to You, together with your eternal Father and your all-holy, good and life-givng Spirit, now and always and for ages upon ages. Amen.

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