Troparul Sfintei Mucenite Chiriachi.
În zilele împaratului Diocletian, la anul 282, era un crestin anume Dorotei împreuna cu sotia sa care se chema Evsevia. Acestia, fiindca erau fara de fii, se rugau lui Dumnezeu ca sa le dea rod si fiu, fagaduind sa daruiasca iarasi Lui pe copilul ce se va naste lor. Deci a ascultat Dumnezeu rugaciunea lor, si au nascut un prunc de parte femeiasca în ziua de Duminica, pentru care lucru si pe prunca au numit-o Chiriachi, ce va sa zica Duminica. Si au hranit-o cu învatatura si cuvântul Domnului, dupa Apostolul Pavel, si au pazit-o pe fecioara, fiindca fagaduisera a o afierosi lui Dumnezeu.
Iar când pagânul Diocletian a ridicat prigoana asupra crestinilor, atunci au fost pârâti nascatorii sfintei împreuna cu dânsa la tiran, cum ca sunt crestini. Acesta cercetând pe parintii sfintei i-a batut si i-a trimis la ducele Iust, ce se afla la partile Meletinei în Armenia cea mica. Iar pe Chiriachi a trimis-o la cezarul Maximian, care se afla în Nicomidia. Maximian, cercetând pe mucenita si aflând-o tare în credinta lui Hristos, a poruncit de au batut-o mult. Si de vreme ce sfânta se ruga, pentru aceasta tiranul se mânia asupra ostasilor celor ce chinuiau pe mucenita. Atunci a zis sfânta catre Maximian: “Nu te însela, Maximiane, caci niciodata nu ma vei birui, caci harul lui Dumnezeu îmi este în ajutor”. Atunci Maximian a trimis pe sfânta la Ilarion, stapânitorul Bitiniei.
Ilarion, cercetând pe mucenita, a dus-o în capistea idolilor. Acolo rugându-se sfânta, s-a facut cutremur mare încât s-au zdrobit idolii si s-au facut ca niste praf; dupa aceasta a urmat si o furtuna de vânt, care a împrastiat în vazduh praful idolilor, si un fulger a ars fata stapânitorului Ilarion, care cazând din scaun a murit.
Venind alt stapânitor în locul lui si fiind înstiintat de acestea, a hotarât ca sfânta sa fie supusa la felurite chinuri, din care a ramas nevatamata. Atunci a sezut stapânitorul la judecata si a dat asupra sfintei hotarârea sa fie ucisa afara din cetate prin taierea capului. Atunci sfânta a cerut vreme ca sa se roage; si dupa ce s-a rugat mult, a învatat pe crestinii cei ce îi urmasera; apoi culcându-se pe pamânt, si-a dat sufletul în mâinile lui Dumnezeu, si mergând ostasii aproape de dânsa, vrând ca sa-i taie capul, si vazând-o moarta s-au spaimântat. Deci s-a facut glas dumnezeiesc catre dânsii: “Mergeti, fratilor, si propovaduiti maririle lui Dumnezeu”. Iar ostasii întorcându-se au slavit pe Dumnezeu.
Ἦταν κόρη τοῦ Δωροθέου καὶ τῆς Εὐσεβίας. Αὐτοὶ ἦταν ἄτεκνοι καὶ παρακαλοῦσαν τὸν Θεὸ νὰ τοὺς δώσει παιδί. Πράγματι, ὁ Θεὸς εὐδόκησε, καὶ τὸ χριστιανικὸ αὐτὸ ζευγάρι, ἀπέκτησε παιδί. Γεννήθηκε ἡμέρα Κυριακή, γι’ αὐτὸ καὶ τῆς ἔδωσαν τὸ ὄνομα Κυριακή.
Κατὰ τὸν διωγμὸ τοῦ Διοκλητιανοῦ, οἱ γονεῖς της συνελήφθησαν καὶ μετὰ ἀπὸ ἀνάκριση βασανίστηκαν καὶ ἀποκεφαλίστηκαν ἀπὸ τὸ δοῦκα Ἰοῦστο. Ἡ δὲ Κυριακὴ παραπέμφθηκε στὸν Καίσαρα Μαξιμιανό, καὶ ἀπὸ ἐκεῖ στὸν ἄρχοντα Βιθυνίας Ἰλαριανό, ὁ ὁποῖος τῆς ὑπενθύμισε ὅτι ἡ ὀμορφιά της εἶναι γιὰ ἀπολαύσεις καὶ ὄχι γιὰ βασανιστήρια. Τότε ἡ παρθένος κόρη τοῦ ἀπάντησε: «Οὔτε στὴ νεότητά μου, οὔτε στὴν ὀμορφιά μου δίνω τὴν παραμικρὴ προσοχή. Καὶ τὰ λαμπρότερα ἀπὸ τὰ ἐπίγεια πράγματα εἶναι προσωρινά ὅπως τὰ ἄνθη καὶ κούφια ὅπως οἱ σκιές. Σήμερα, ἔπαρχε, εἶμαι ὄμορφη, αὔριο μιὰ ἄσχημη γριά. Νὰ κάνω, λοιπόν, κέντρο τῆς ζωῆς μου τὴν ὀμορφιά μου; Τὴν ἀξία της, ὅμως, τὴ γνώρισα στὶς ρυτίδες, ποὺ τὴν περιμένουν καὶ στὸν τάφο ποὺ τὴν καλεῖ. Νόμισες, λοιπόν, ὅτι θὰ κάνω τὴν τερατώδη ἀνοησία, νὰ χάσω τὴν αἰώνια λαμπρότητα γιὰ νὰ μείνω λίγο περισσότερο στὴ γῆ; Γι’ αὐτὸ στὸ ξαναλέω, ἔπαρχε: εἶμαι καὶ θὰ εἶμαι στὴ ζωὴ καὶ στὸ θάνατο χριστιανή».
Ἐξοργισμένος ὁ Ἰλαριανός, σκληρὰ τὴν βασάνισε καὶ διέταξε νὰ τὴν ἀποκεφαλίσουν. Ἄλλα πρὶν πέσει ἡ σπάθη, προσευχόμενη παρέδωσε τὸ πνεῦμα της στὸν Κύριο.
Ἀπολυτίκιον. Ἦχος δ’. Ταχὺ προκατάλαβε.
Κυρίων τὸν Κύριον, καὶ Βασιλέα Χριστόν, ἐξ ὅλης ἠγάπησας, Κυριακή τῆς ψυχῆς, καὶ χαίρουσα ἤθλησας· ὅθεν Παρθενομάρτυς, παρ’ αὐτοῦ δοξασθεῖσα, βρύεις τοὶς σὲ τιμῶσιν, ἰαμάτων τὴν χάριν, τοῖς πᾶσιν αἰτουμένη, πταισμάτων συγχώρησιν.
Κοντάκιον Ἦχος β’. Τὰ ἄνω ζητῶν.
Ἡ Μάρτυς Χριστοῦ, ἡμᾶς συνεκαλέσατο, τοὺς ἄθλους αὐτῆς, τοὺς θείους καὶ παλαίσματα, ἐγκωμίοις ᾆσαι νῦν· φερωνύμως γὰρ αὕτη πέφηνεν, ὡς ἀνδρεία τῷ φρονήματι, κυρία νοός τε καὶ παθῶν ἀπρεπῶν.
Κύριον ποθοῦσα Κυριακή, τὸν ὡραῖον κάλλει, παρὰ πάντας τοὺς γηγενεῖς, τούτῳ ἐνυμφεύθης, ἀθλητικοῖς ἀγῶσιν, ὡς Μάρτυς Ἀθληφόρος, καὶ καλλιπάρθενος.
Saint Kyriake was the only child of Dorotheus and Eusebia. Since she was born on a Sunday (Kyriake, in Greek), she was named Kyriake.
One day a wealthy magistrate wished to betroth Kyriake to his son. Not only was she young and beautiful, but her parents were wealthy, and the magistrate wished to control that wealth. The magistrate went to her parents to request her hand, but St Kyriake told him that she wished to remain a virgin, for she had dedicated herself to Christ.
The magistrate was angered by her words, so he went to the emperor Diocletian to denounce the saint and her parents as Christians who mocked the idols, and refused to offer sacrifice to them.
Diocletian sent soldiers to arrest the family and have them brought before him. He asked them why they would not honor the gods which he himself honored. They told him that these were false gods, and that Christ was the one true God.
Dorotheus was beaten until the soldiers grew tired and were unable to continue. Since neither flattery nor torment had any effect, Diocletian sent Dorotheus and Eusebia to Melitene on the eastern border between Cappadocia and Armenia. Then he sent St Kyriake to be interrogated by his son-in-law and co-ruler Maximian at Nicomedia.
Maximian urged her not to throw her life away, promising her wealth and marriage to one of Diocletian’s relatives if she would worship the pagan gods. St Kyriake replied that she would never renounce Christ, nor did she desire worldly riches. Enraged by her bold answer, Maximian had her flogged. The soldiers who administered this punishment became tired, and had to be replaced three times.
Shamed by his failure to overcome a young woman, Maximian sent St Kyriake to Hilarion, the eparch of Bithynia, at Chalcedon. He told Hilarion to either convert Kyriake to paganism, or send her back to him.
Making the same promises and threats that Diocletian and Maximian had made before, Hilarion was no more successful than they were. St Kyriake challenged him to do his worst, because Christ would help her to triumph. The saint was suspended by her hair for several hours, while soldiers burned her body with torches. Not only did she endure all this, she also seemed to become more courageous under torture. Finally, she was taken down and put into a prison cell.
That night Christ appeared to her and healed her wounds. When Hilarion saw her the next day, he declared that she had been healed by the gods because they pitied her. Then Hilarion urged her to go to the temple to give thanks to the gods. She told him that she had been healed by Christ, but agreed to go to the temple. The eparch rejoiced, thinking that he had defeated her.
In the temple, St Kyriake prayed that God would destroy the soulless idols. Suddenly, there was a great earthquake which toppled the idols, shattering them to pieces. Everyone fled the temple in fear, leaving Hilarion behind. Instead of recognizing the power of Christ, the eparch blasphemed the true God as the destroyer of his pagan gods. He was struck by a bolt of lightning and died on the spot.
St Kyriake was tortured again by Apollonius, who succeeded Hilarion as eparch. When she was cast into a fire, the flames were extinguished. When she was thrown to wild beasts, they became tame and gentle. Therefore, Apollonius sentenced her to death by the sword. She was permitted time to pray, so she asked God to receive her soul, and to remember those who honored her martyrdom.
Just as St Kyriake ended her prayer, angels took her soul before the soldiers could strike off her head. Pious Christians took her relics and buried them in a place of honor.