Hieromartyr Theodore the Bishop of Cyrene in Libya

The Hieromartyr Theodore, Bishop of Cyrene, lived during the reign of the emperor Diocletian (284-305). Skilled at writing, and having attained great skill in calligraphy, he transcribed many books for the churches. His son Leo denounced him to the district governor, Dignianus, saying that his father possessed Christian books and was turning people away from idol worship, and bringing them instead to faith in Christ the Savior. St Theodore was brought to trial. Many Christians followed after him, including the women Cyprilla, Lucia and Aroa. The holy bishop was ordered to surrender his books and renounce Christ, but he refused this demand. They beat him with rods, but St Theodore was not intimidated. With a fiery zeal for the truth he destroyed the pagan sacrificial offerings. They tortured him for a long while, cut out his tongue, and then threw him in prison where he died. Also put to death were the women Cyprilla, Lucia and Aroa, and all who had accepted holy Baptism from the holy bishop.