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A question about women saints


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#21 Margaret S.

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Posted 14 February 2009 - 10:30 PM

"You just be careful, you and all your man-friends. Don't go filling up the wall with men and leave no room for any women!"

Well said! It reminds me of visiting a friend's house with another non-Orthodox friend who, looking at the icon wall said, "Did all

Sorry, everyone, I am not used to my tiny keyboard and somehow this got sent when I was only trying to delete something. The friend asked if all Orthodox saints had impressive white beards and the other friend's wife replied, wearily, no, only the male ones. They had no women in their icon corner.

Edited by Margaret S., 14 February 2009 - 10:37 PM.
I am a clumsy typist.


#22 Margaret S.

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Posted 14 February 2009 - 10:33 PM

"You just be careful, you and all your man-friends. Don't go filling up the wall with men and leave no room for any women!"

Well said! ;-)

I have received much comfort from Matushka Olga Michael of Alaska (http://oholy.net/sto...olga_index.html) but she is not formally canonised yet, however, many people venerate her and she has appeared in dreams. I apologise if I shouldn’t mention her because she isn't canonised but she has been a source of strength and comfort to me as I lost my mother when I was still quite young. There is also St Dwynwen of Wales who, after a tragic romantic love (there are several versions) became a hermit and is the Welsh patron saint of both lovers and animals. I would also recommend St Xenia of St Petersburg as above. Someone else I am fond of although I don’t think there is an icon is St Christine of Brittany, she was the niece of the aged and blind St HervĂ© and on finding him dead one day she simply lay down at his feet and gave up her own spirit – it is a completely beautiful and, to use your ‘forbidden’ word, submissive story but if Christianity is not about submission I don’t know what is. And, if you want five women in one icon, go for the Russian royal family with St Alexandra, St Olga, St Tatiana, St Marie and St Anastasia :-) I once saw a very nice icon of St Olga alone in her Red Cross Nurse uniform and from what I have read she didn’t just dress up as a nurse she actually worked in hospitals and operating rooms.

Regards
Margaret
in Edinburgh

Edited by Margaret S., 14 February 2009 - 10:33 PM.
unintended italics


#23 Margaret S.

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Posted 14 February 2009 - 10:54 PM

St Juliana of Lazarevo whom I've just found in another thread
http://www.monachos....22&postcount=19

Margaret

#24 Paul Cowan

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Posted 15 February 2009 - 12:58 AM

time to get over our convertitis.


Do you kow the difference between a convert's icon corner and a cradel's icon corner?

When the priest goes to bless the house of a convert he blesses the entire house due to all the icons covering every possible nook and crany.
When he goes to a cradels' he has to bring his own icon.

Told to me by an Orthodox priest; so don't fuss at ME.

Paul :)

#25 Nina

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Posted 15 February 2009 - 01:59 AM

Do you kow the difference between a convert's icon corner and a cradel's icon corner?

When the priest goes to bless the house of a convert he blesses the entire house due to all the icons covering every possible nook and crany.
When he goes to a cradels' he has to bring his own icon.

Told to me by an Orthodox priest; so don't fuss at ME.

Paul :)


Ok I will fuss at my icons all over my house (ask Mary who came if you do not believe me)! What's the problem of people who try to "belittle" the cradle, or the converts? As Mary said while I was driving on one of the streets (which is called Gay St.) here in my neighborhood : "Can't go straight on Gay St.!"
:P :P :P

#26 Antonia Colias

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Posted 18 February 2009 - 02:52 PM

I just skimmed this thread, to see if St. Elizabeth, the New Martyr was mentioned. (don't forget her faithful companion, St. Barbara)

FWIW, sometimes an individual new to Orthodoxy finds it easier to "adjust" to the concept of venerating the saints when he or she learns about a saint who lived in [relatively] recent times. This confers a "reality" that, for some people, is easier to believe, compared with reading the life of a saint who died (for example) fifteen hundred years ago.

I'm not expressing myself well. I'm trying to say that once someone grasps the concept of sainthood via an example of someone who lived in recent history, it becomes easier to "work backward" and feel comfortable venerating saints who lived long ago. For this reason, individuals new to the faith often find themselves interested in the Russian New Martyrs (and, sorrowfully, there are plenty to choose among), in St. John the Wonderworker of Shanghai and San Francisco, in St. Nektarios, and so forth.

I digress, however, by listing men saints within this thread.

So just tally my supportive vote for SS. Elizabeth and Barbara !

Antonia

New-martyr Elizabeth the Grand Duchess. (Why didn't I mention her earlier?? *eek*)



#27 D. W. Dickens

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Posted 18 February 2009 - 05:39 PM

FWIW, sometimes an individual new to Orthodoxy finds it easier to "adjust" to the concept of venerating the saints when he or she learns about a saint who lived in [relatively] recent times. This confers a "reality" that, for some people, is easier to believe, compared with reading the life of a saint who died (for example) fifteen hundred years ago.


I do not think I could have even come to the Church without St Nikolai of Ochrid. He taught me how to pray and my heart went to him in a way that broke down some of the barriers my iconoclastic upbringing had instilled in me.

#28 Clare G.

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Posted 30 April 2010 - 12:13 AM

After many decades as an Anglo-Catholic I am being being received by Chrismation on Sunday. My name is Clare, which I assumed was not an Orthodox saint's name. However, I found online an article by Fr Andrew Philips about Orthodox names where he advises that uncalled-for changes of name are to be discouraged. He goes on to say:

Some converts change names when it is not necessary, not through some identity crisis, but from ignorance. The following are names which seem to be perfectly valid Orthodox names, many of them being those of pre-Schism Western saints: Alan, Albert, Alphonse (St. Ildefonse), Angus, Audrey, Aylwin, Barry, Bernard, Bertrand, Brigid, Claire (St. Photini or Svetlana) ....


I was delighted to find Claire/Clare in his list and to accept St Photini (the Samaritan woman) as my patron, as I have always loved that Gospel reading, but knew nothing of her later history according to tradition. Then I realized that this Sunday of my Chrismation is the Sunday of the Samaritan Woman, and that made the choice of St Photini seem very appropriate.

However, I've now been told that, although the names mean the same, I shall have to be addressed as Photini whenever I am in the church, even at coffee hour. That was totally unexpected and I'm finding it very hard to accept as it sounds so foreign to my ears. I'd be glad to hear other people's views about this.

#29 Clare G.

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Posted 30 April 2010 - 07:56 AM

I should add that this was said to me not by the priest but by the layman who was instrumental in founding this small mission church. I shall not have a chance to speak to the priest until tomorrow evening after Saturday Vespers as he is busy elsewhere until then.

#30 Olga

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Posted 30 April 2010 - 08:27 AM

However, I've now been told that, although the names mean the same, I shall have to be addressed as Photini whenever I am in the church, even at coffee hour. That was totally unexpected and I'm finding it very hard to accept as it sounds so foreign to my ears. I'd be glad to hear other people's views about this.


My opinion, having had long experience in both Greek and Russian flavours of Orthodoxy, I honestly cannot see a problem with you being called Clare. The name Photeini means bright one, or glowing, as does Svetlana, and Clare/Claire. Perhaps this name was bestowed on the Samaritan woman to illustrate her enlightenment on becoming a Christian, and, with Greek being the lingua franca of the Greco-Roman world at the time, this woman received the Greek form. If another language was the order of the day at the time, then her name would be known to us in a different form. To our Arabic and Romanian members: How is this name rendered in your languages?

Another example (and by no means the only one) of multiple forms of names is Kyriakos (Greek), Dominic (Latin, Italian, etc), and Bogdan (Serbian and other Slavic languages). All are derived from the word for Lord in their respective languages, and all are considered acceptable Orthodox baptismal names. The same goes for names such as Lazarus, which is the Greek form of the Hebrew name Eleazar.

In short: If Svetlana is regarded as an appropriate alternative form of Photeini, then I cannot see any valid objection to your use of Clare.

I can only assume that you being told that only Photeini is a suitable form of your name is due to some sort of cultural problem accepting a Latin form of the name. As rigid as some Russians can be on many matters, I've yet to come across any of them insisting on "only the Slavic" form of one's name be used.

#31 Margaret S.

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Posted 30 April 2010 - 09:57 AM

If your priest accepts Clare as a form of Svetlana/Photini then he will refer to you as Clare at the chalice so I don't think you need worry about having to remember to answer to Photini anywhere else!

And congratulations :)

Margaret
in Edinburgh

#32 Father David Moser

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Posted 30 April 2010 - 02:38 PM

My name is Clare, ...

I was delighted to find Claire/Clare in his list and to accept St Photini (the Samaritan woman) as my patron, ...

However, I've now been told that, although the names mean the same, I shall have to be addressed as Photini whenever I am in the church, even at coffee hour. That was totally unexpected and I'm finding it very hard to accept as it sounds so foreign to my ears. I'd be glad to hear other people's views about this.


I think that my brother priest who named his second youngest daughter "Claire" would be very surprised to learn that he had to call hr something else now. Laymen (not to mention most clergy) have a lot of strange little ideas that they gather on their grandmother's knee (or in the case of us converts from something that we read/heard/assumed from the early days of our inquiries) that aren't really true, but which have never really been corrected as they didn't seem to matter. I would not worry about this at all.

Fr David Moser

#33 Owen

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Posted 30 April 2010 - 05:39 PM

An acquaintance of mine at church took St. Photini as her patron Saint when she was chrismated. She uses this name only when giving it to the priest at Communion, or in other Sacramental contexts. She goes by her civil given name at all other times, as do I.

It's a nice touch, I'll admit, to be addressed by the name of your patron Saint--unless you happen to be baptized or chrismated Barsanuphios, or something equally as long and bizarre. Monks and nuns, OTOH, don't mind taking on streange or lengthy names.

#34 Rdr Andreas

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Posted 30 April 2010 - 06:24 PM

Monks and nuns, OTOH, don't mind taking on streange or lengthy names.


They may have no say in the matter.

#35 Richard A. Downing

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Posted 30 April 2010 - 07:54 PM

I, too, am to be Chrismated on Sunday. I hope to keep my name from RC baptism 60 years ago. I had a little fear that Father might want me to take Athanasius, as there are three saints, two were Patriarchs, with that name in the list for Sunday. It's not that I would not be honoured and blessed by such a great saint being my patron, but I do remember at school the boys with names starting "A" always had to do the tests first! I think I've convinced him that St Richard of Wessex (722) is a perfectly respectable orthodox saint - and that's his Icon by Aidan Hart on my profile.
Going back to the origins of this thread, I didn't notice anyone nominating St Nina the Apostle of Georgia, I have always found her story very uplifting - it also seems to me that her namesakes are pretty strong personalities too. (My wife's name is Nina!)

Clare, you will be in my prayers on Sunday.

Love, In Christ, Richard.

#36 Owen

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Posted 30 April 2010 - 08:23 PM

I'd like to recommend a favorite of mine: St. Hermione. She was one of the four virgin daughters of St. Philip the Deacon "who were prophetesses" according to Acts. After spending some time in her native Caesarea, she took it on herself to go with her sister Evtychi in search of St. John the Theologian, that they might learn from him. They came anon to Ephesus, only to find that he had already reposed, and put themselves at the disposal of his disciple and successor Petronius.

St. Hermione settled down and proceeded to start a xenodulion (an inn for strangers) to minister to the poor, elderly, and handicapped. She became famous for her use of a combination of herbal medicines and preaching to treat both the physical and spiritual illnesses of her charges. This attracted the interest of the Emperor Trajan when he passed through Ephesus on his way beterrn Roma and war in the East. He called her before him and spoke patronizingly to her, and discovered that the healer had a mouth on her. After having her beaten and chastized, he went on his way.

His successor Hadrian, likewise, sought to speak with her when he passed through Ephesus. He had learned nothing from his predecessor, and his temper was shorter, and he ended up putting her through a multitude of tortures. At the end of them, quite unscathed, she announced that she'd seen a vision of herself entering the pagan temple, and he took it that she wanted to renounce Christ and declare her loyalty to Rome, so he had her led into the temple. She stood there and prayed, and a great thunderclap and earthquake followed, whereupon she ran out of the temple and called out, "Go in, O King, for your gods have fallen down and can't get up!" This so angered Hadrian that he ordered her esecution outside the city. The soldiers commanded to carry out the execution were not able to carry out the sentence, and instead, besought the Saint's forgiveness and baptism into the Christian faith. They disappeared into the hills and were never seen alive again, but their relics were found and preserved.

#37 Clare G.

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Posted 30 April 2010 - 10:53 PM

My grateful thanks to Olga, Margaret, Father David and Dr Owen for their prompt and very supportive replies.

And to you too, Richard, for making me feel less alone: you will be in my prayers too on Sunday.

The irony is that the very person who is (at present) so insistent that I must henceforth be called Photini at all times by all in this congregation is the one who is so vehement against 'phyletism' and proud that, unlike at almost all the Orthodox churches in this city, all the mission's services are served entirely in English.

#38 John Daniel

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Posted 13 December 2010 - 02:26 AM

I, personally, am very close to St. Barbara of Heliopolis.




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