012Great Martyrs Sophia and her three daughters Faith (Pistis), Hope (Elpitha) and Love (Agape), at Rome

September 17

Today we celebrate the Holy Martyr Sophia with her three Virgin Martyr daughters, Faith, Hope and Love. Although our Orthodox Fellowship’s society bears the name SOPHIA, we do not celebrate under the namesake of this Saint, but rather Sophia, the Wisdom of God. The three virgin martyrs were subject to cruel and viscious torments which eventually had them killed right before their mother’s eyes. Their mother Sophia was forced to watch as a punishment from the torturer, but rather than pleading for the tortures to cease, she encouraged her daughters to persevere in the faith, saying that the suffering will not last long and that they would soon meet their Bridegroom in Paradise. After all three daughters had been killed, Sophia reverently buried them and reposed in the Lord soon after while praying at their graves. At the time of their martyrdom, Faith was 12 years old, Hope was 10, and Love was 9.

Ἀπολυτίκιον
Ἦχος πλ. α’. Τὸν συνάναρχον Λόγον.
Ὡς ἐλαία κατάκαρπος ἀνεβλάστησας ἐν ταῖς αὐλαῖς τοῦ Κυρίου, Σοφία μάρτυς σεμνὴ καὶ προσήγαγες Χριστῷ καρπὸν ἡδύτατον τοὺς τῆς νηδύος σου βλαστούς, δι’ ἀγώνων εὐαγῶν, Ἀγάπην τε καὶ Ἐλπίδα σὺν τῇ θεόφρονι Πίστει· μεθ’ ὧν δυσώπει ὑπὲρ πάντων ἡμῶν.

Κοντάκιον
Ἦχος α’. Χορὸς ἀγγελικὸς.
Σοφίας τῆς σεμνῆς, ἱερώτατοι κλάδοι, ἡ Πίστις καὶ Ἐλπίς, καὶ Ἀγάπη δειχθεῖσαι, σοφίαν ἀπεμώραναν, τῶν Ἑλλήνων ἐν χάριτι, καὶ ἀθλήσασαι, καὶ νικηφόροι φανεῖσαι, στέφος ἄφθαρτον, παρὰ τοῦ πάντων Δεσπότου, Χριστοῦ ἀνεδήσαντο.

Troparion — Tone 5
You blossomed in the courts of the Lord / as a fruitful olive tree, / holy martyr Sophia; / in your contest you offered to Christ the sweet fruit of your womb, / your daughters Faith, Hope, and Love. / Together with them intercede for us all.

Kontakion — Tone 1
The holy branches of noble Sophia, / Faith, Hope, and Love, / confounded Greek sophistry through Grace. / They struggled and won the victory / and have been granted an incorruptible crown by Christ the Master of all.