Lives of all saints commemorated on May 24


Venerable Simeon Stylites the Younger of Wonderful Mountain

Saint Simeon the Stylite was born in the year 521 in Antioch, Syria of pious parents John and Martha. From her youth St Martha (July 4) prepared herself for a life of virginity and longed for monasticism, but her parents insisted that she marry John. After ardent prayer in a church dedicated to St John the Forerunner, the future nun was directed in a vision to submit to the will of her parents and enter into marriage.

As a married woman, St Martha strove to please God and her husband in everything. She often prayed for a baby and promised to dedicate him to the service of God. St John the Forerunner revealed to Martha that she would have a son who would serve God. When the infant was born, he was named Simeon and baptized at two years of age.

When Simeon was six years old, an earthquake occurred in the city of Antioch, in which his father perished. Simeon was in church at the time of the earthquake. Leaving the church, he became lost and spent seven days sheltered by a pious woman. St John the Baptist again appeared to St Martha, and indicated where to find the lost boy. The saint’s mother found her lost son, and moved to the outskirts of Antioch after the earthquake. Already during his childhood the Lord Jesus Christ appeared several times to St Simeon, foretelling his future exploits and the reward for them.

The six-year-old child Simeon went into the wilderness, where he lived in complete isolation. During this time a light-bearing angel guarded and fed him. Finally, he arrived at a monastery, headed by the igumen Abba John, who lived in asceticism upon a pillar. He accepted the boy with love.

After a time, St Simeon asked the Elder John to permit him also to struggle upon a pillar. A new pillar was raised by the brethren of the monastery with the blessing of the igumen, near his pillar. Having completed the initiation of the seven-year-old boy into monasticism, Abba John placed him upon this pillar. The young ascetic, strengthened by the Lord, quickly grew spiritually, in his efforts surpassing even his experienced instructor. For his efforts, St Simeon received from God the gift of healing.

The fame of the young monk’s deeds began to spread beyond the bounds of the monastery. Monks and laypeople began to come to him from various places, desiring to hear his counsel and receive healing from their infirmities. The humble ascetic continued to pursue asceticism with instructions from his spiritual mentor Abba John.

When he was eleven, Simeon decided to pursue asceticism upon a higher pillar, the top of which was forty feet from the ground. The bishops of Antioch and Seleukia came to the place of the monk’s endeavors, and ordained him as a deacon. Then they permitted him to ascend the new pillar, on which St Simeon labored for eight years.

St Simeon prayed ardently for the Holy Spirit to descend upon him, and the holy prayer of the ascetic was heard. The Holy Spirit came upon him in the form of a blazing light, filling the ascetic with divine wisdom. Along with oral instructions, St Simeon wrote letters about repentance, monasticism, about the Incarnation of Christ, and about the future Judgment.

After the death of his Elder, St Simeon’s life followed a certain pattern. From the rising of the sun until mid-afternoon he read books and copied Holy Scripture. Then he rose and prayed all night. When the new day began, he rested somewhat, then began his usual Rule of prayer.

St Simeon concluded his efforts on the second column, and by God’s dispensation, settled upon the Wonderful Mountain, having become an experienced Elder to the monks in his monastery. The ascent to Wonderful Mountain was marked by a vision of the Lord, standing atop a column. St Simeon continued his efforts at this place where he saw the Lord, at first upon a stone, and then upon a pillar.

Future events were revealed to St Simeon, and so he foretold the death of Archbishop Ephraim of Antioch, and the illness of Bishop Domnus, which overtook him as punishment for his lack of pity. Finally, St Simeon predicted an earthquake for the city of Antioch and urged all the inhabitants to repent of their sins.

St Simeon established a monastery on Wonderful Mountain,where the sick people he healed built a church in gratitude for the mercy shown them. The saint prayed for a spring of water for the needs of the monastery, and once during a shortage of grain, the granaries of the monastery were filled with wheat by his prayers.

In the year 560 the holy ascetic was ordained to the priesthood by Dionysius, Bishop of Seleukia. At age seventy-five St Simeon was warned by the Lord of his impending end. He summoned the brethren of the monastery, instructed them in a farewell talk, and peacefully fell asleep in the Lord in the year 596, having toiled as a stylite for sixty-eight years.

After death, the saint worked miracles just as he had when alive. He healed the blind, the lame and the leprous, saving many from wild beasts, casting out devils and raising the dead.


Venerable Nikita the Stylite, Wonderworker of Pereyaslavl, Zalesski

No information available at this time.


Martyr Meletius Stratelates who suffered in Galatia

Saint Meletius the General, Stephen, John, Serapion the Egyptian, Callinicus the Sorcerer, Theodore, Faustus and 1218 soldiers, women and children with them.

The holy martyr Meletius was a military commander of the Galatia district of Asia Minor during the reign of the Roman emperor Antoninus Pius (138-161). He was a Christian and he prayed fervently that the Lord would put an end to the pagan error. Terrified by his prayer, the devils inhabiting the pagan temples entered into dogs, which frightened the inhabitants of the district with their howling.

St. Meletius and his soldiers got rid of the mad dogs, and destroyed the temples. He was arrested and brought to trial before the governor Maximian. Since he refused to offer sacrifice to idols, St. Meletius was tortured and he died confessing his faith in Christ. The tribunes of his regiment, the holy martyrs Stephen and John, were beheaded for their confession of Christ as true God.

The remaining soldiers of the regiment, also declaring themselves Christians, were beheaded by the sword, together with their wives and children. 1218 men perished, although some historians put the number at 11,000 .

The holy martyrs Theodore and Faustus were burned along with many others. Among the women and children who suffered are the holy martyrs Marciana, Susanna, Palladia, and the infants Kyriakos and Christian. The names of some of the soldiers, and of the twelve tribunes are known: the holy martyrs Faustus, Festus, Marcellus, Theodore, Meletius, Sergius, Marcellinus, Felix, Photinus, Theodoriscus, Mercurius and Didymus.


Martyr Stephen who suffered in Galatia

Saint Stephen suffered martyrdom with St Meletius the General around 218. He was beheaded.


Martyr John who suffered in Galatia

Saint John suffered martyrdom with St Meletius the General around 218. He was beheaded.


1,218 Martyred Soldiers with women and children who suffered in Galatia

These 1218 martyrs were Christian soldiers of the regiment of St Meletius the General. They were beheaded by the sword, together with their wives and children.


Martyr Serapion the Egyptian who suffered in Galatia

The holy martyr Serapion was born in Egypt. He had come to Galatia and witnessed the martyrdom of St. Meletius and his comrades. Seeing the bravery with which those who believed in Christ died for Him, St. Serapion also believed, for which he was imprisoned. An angel of God visited St. Serapion in prison and made him a bishop.


Martyr Callinicus the Magician in Galatia

Saint Callinicus was a former sorcerer who suffered martyrdom with St Meletius the General around 218.


Martyr Theodore who suffered in Galatia

Saint Theodore suffered martyrdom with St Meletius the General around 218.


Martyr Faustus who suffered in Galatia

Saint Faustus was one of twelve tribunes who suffered martyrdom with St Meletius the General around 218.


Martyr Marciana who suffered in Galatia

Saint Marciana was one of the women who suffered with St Meletius the General around 218.


Martyr Susanna who suffered in Galatia

The Holy Martyrs Meletius the General, Stephen, John, Serapion the Egyptian, Callinicus the Sorcerer, Theodore and Faustus and with them 1218 Soldiers with Women and Children.

The holy martyr Meletius was a military commander of the Galatia district of Asia Minor during the reign of the Roman emperor Antoninus Pius (138-161). He was a Christian and he prayed fervently that the Lord would put an end to the pagan error. Terrified by his prayer, the devils inhabiting the pagan temples entered into dogs, which frightened the inhabitants of the district with their howling.

St Meletius and his soldiers dispatched the mad dogs, destroyed the temples and was then arrested and brought to trial before the governor Maximian. For refusing to offer sacrifice to idols St Meletius was tortured, and he died confessing his faith in Christ. The tribunes of his regiment, the holy martyrs Stephen and John, were beheaded for their confession of Christ as true God.

The remaining soldiers of the regiment, also declaring themselves Christians, were beheaded by the sword, together with their wives and children. 1218 men perished, although some historians put the number at 11,000 .

The holy martyrs Theodore and Faustus were burned along with many others. Among the women and children who suffered are the holy martyrs Marciana, Susanna, Palladia, and the infants Cyriacus and Christian. The names of some of the soldiers, and of the twelve tribunes are known: the holy martyrs Faustus, Festus, Marcellus, Theodore, Meletius, Sergius, Marcellinus, Felix, Photinus, Theodoriscus, Mercurius and Didymus.

The holy martyr Serapion was born in Egypt. He had come to the Galatia district and witnessed the martyrdom of St Meletius and his comrades. Seeing the bravery with which those believing in Christ died for Him, St Serapion himself believed, for which he was imprisoned. In prison, an angel of God came down to him and made St Serapion a bishop.


Martyr Palladia who suffered in Galatia

Saint Palladia was one of the women who suffered with St Meletius the General around 218.


Childmartyr Cyriacus who suffered in Galatia

Saint Cyriacus was an infant who was martyred with St Meletius the General around 218.


Childmartyr Christian who suffered in Galatia

Saint Christian was an infant who was martyred with St Meletius the General around 218.


12 Martyred Tribunes who suffered in Galatia

These twelve tribunes suffered martyrdom with St Meletius the General around 218. Their names are Faustus, Festus, Marcellus, Theodore, Meletius, Sergius, Marcellinus, Felix, Photinus, Theodoriscus, Mercurius and Didymus.


Martyr Fautus who suffered in Galatia

Saint Faustus was one of twelve tribunes who suffered martyrdom with St Meletius the General around 218. He was burned alive.


Martyr Festus who suffered in Galatia

Saint Festus was one of twelve tribunes who suffered martyrdom with St Meletius the General around 218.


Martyr Marcellus who suffered in Galatia

Saint Marcellus was one of twelve tribunes who suffered martyrdom with St Meletius the General around 218.


Martyr Theodore who suffered in Galatia

Saint Theodore was one of twelve tribunes who suffered martyrdom with St Meletius the General around 218. He was burned alive.


Martyr Meletius who suffered in Galatia

Saint Meletius was one of twelve tribunes who suffered martyrdom with St Meletius the General around 218.


Martyr Sergius who suffered in Galatia

Saint Sergius was one of twelve tribunes who suffered martyrdom with St Meletius the General around 218.


Martyr Marcellinus who suffered in Galatia

Saint Marcellinus was one of twelve tribunes who suffered martyrdom with St Meletius the General around 218.


Martyr Felix who suffered in Galatia

Saint Felix was one of twelve tribunes who suffered martyrdom with St Meletius the General around 218.


Martyr Photinus who suffered in Galatia

Saint Photinus was one of twelve tribunes who suffered martyrdom with St Meletius the General around 218.


Martyr Theodoriscus who suffered in Galatia

Saint Theodoriscus was one of twelve tribunes who suffered martyrdom with St Meletius the General around 218.


Martyr Mercurius who suffered in Galatia

Saint Mercurius was one of twelve tribunes who suffered martyrdom with St Meletius the General around 218.


Martyr Didymus who suffered in Galatia

Saint Didymus was one of twelve tribunes who suffered martyrdom with St Meletius the General around 218.


St Vincent of Lerins

No information on the life of this saint is available at this time.