Holy Martyr Saint Valentina of Caesarea

by Ann Neilson

Note: This post is unlike any other on this blog. Because of my dear grandmother’s steadfast dedication to studying the Eastern Orthodox saints, I have delved into these studies, as well. These studies will not be regularly posted on this blog. This post is purely for research purposes.

Today we commemorate the Holy Martyr Saint Valentina of Caesarea, Palestine.  According to Eusebius of Caesarea in “The History of the Martyrs in Palestine, Saint Valentina was condemned in 308 AD by the governor of Palestine for her strong faith in the Lord, as well as for rising to the defense of her sister, Thea, who was tortured and convicted for her faith and defiance against the Egyptian emperor. Notably, although “small indeed in person,” Valentina was “courageous in soul.” When accosted after speaking out against the torture being inflicted upon her sister, Valentina boldly kicked an altar containing sacrifices, which overturned, consequently scattering fire from the altar upon the ground. Because of her rebellious actions, Valentina was persecuted, and subsequently both Thea and Valentina were tortured and bound together, sentenced to death by fire, for their acts of resilience and for testifying the name of Jesus Christ.

 

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This is my own icon of Saint Valentina. Many thanks to David of Russian Icons online for posting an incredibly helpful guide on translating Vyaz’ Church Slavic calligraphy. Without his post, I would not know the subject of this icon. I was unable to find an icon of Saint Valentina like this one online, which is why I’m posting it here. Please feel free to use it as needed.