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Holy martyrs Adrian and Natalia

On September 8th (August 26th, old style) the Church commemorates the holy martyrs Adrian and Natalia.

The holy martyr Adrian was a rich and distinguished pagan who lived in the city of Nicomedia. The Roman emperor Maximilian once came to Nicomedia to persecute Christians. Twenty-three Christians were taken and tortured terribly. Adrian witnessed their martyrdom and marveled at their extraordinary endurance. Under the influence of his feelings he began questioning them about God. While talking with the martyrs, the grace of God touched his sentient and kind soul and he came to realize the divine ruth. Immediately he told the perse-cutors that he, too, was a believer in Christ and was ready to die for Him. The persecutors then put Adrian in chains and threw him into prison.

Holy martyrs Adrian and Natalia.
Holy martyrs Adrian and Natalia.

When Adrians young wife, Natalia, who was already secretly a Christian, learned of this, she felt great joy that her husband had found Christ and was about to receive the crown of martyrdom. She hurried to the prison, threw herself at Adrians feet and embraced his chains, and told him about the eternal bliss which awaited him. My lord, - Natalia said to Adrian, - when you stand before God, intercede for me that I might soon follow you and be together with you for eternity. Soon Adrian was led out of prison and subjected to cruel torture. Natalia was with him to the very end, encouraging his faith in God, and had the spiritual comfort of seeing him joyously give up his soul to God amid his martyrdom. Due to the great inner torment which Natalia suffered at seeing her husband martyred, she also earned a martyric crown, and soon after the death of Adrian she followed him into the Heavenly Realm.

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