St. John the Baptist Parish, A Parish of the Russian Orthodox Church, Canberra, Australia

5 / 18 November

Our Holy Father Galacteon and our Mother Epistemis, Martyrs

They were born in the city of Edessa in Phoenicia, both of pagan parents. Galacteon's mother was barren until she was baptised. After her baptism, she brought her husband also to the true Faith and baptised her son Galacteon, bringing him up a Christian. When the time came for Galacteon to marry, his devout mother Leucippe died, and his father betrothed him to a maiden called Epistemis. Galacteon did not wish to enter into marriage at all, and he quickly urged Epistemis to be baptised and then to become a nun at the same time as he became a monk. Both went away to the mountain of Publion, Galacteon to a men's monastery and Epistemis to a women's, and each of them became a true light in the monastery. They were first in labours, in prayer, in humility and obedience, and first in love. They did not leave their monasteries, and neither saw the other until the time of their death. A fierce persecution arose, and they were both brought to trial. While they were mercilessly whipping Galacteon, Epistemis was weeping, and they then whipped her also. They cut off their hands and feet, and finally their heads. One Eutolius, a man who had been a servant of Epistemis's parents and then a monk together with Galacteon, took their bodies and buried them. He also wrote the Lives of these two wonderful martyrs for Christ, who suffered and received their heavenly crowns in 253. The Holy Apostles Patrobus, Hermes, Linus, Gaius and Philologus.

St. Cybi, abbot in Cornwall and Wales (550)

A Cornish saint who travelled by sea and river, living as a hermit and/or evangelist in various places which bear his name before settling on Anglesey, where his most important work was achieved. This was his founding of a monastery at Holyhead (called in Welsh Caer Gybi, 'Cybi's Fort') in Anglesey, the small island on which it stands being called Holy Island or Ynys Gybi.

On the same day: St. Jonah, Archbishop of Novgorod

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