September 11 Venerable Mother Theodora of Alexandria

Read the Life of St. Theodora here

Saint Theodora of Alexandria and her husband lived in Alexandria. 

Liturgical Hymns in Honor of St. Theodora from the Menaion

Translations copyright by Br. Isaac E. Lambertsen, drawn from the Menaion of the Orthodox Church, in 12 volumes (in English), published by the St. John of Kronstadt Press, 1180 Orthodox Way, Liberty TN 37095; www.sjkp.org.  Authorized only for private devotional purposes.  Further distribution, reproduction, or incorporation into other documents is prohibited without prior permission from the publisher.  All rights reserved.

With Thy praise, O Lord, fill thou my mouth which singeth of thy greatly hymned glory and honoreth the pangs of Theodora, who pleased thee with the splendor of her life.

Today hath thy sacred solemnity shone forth more brightly than the sun, illumining souls which are in darkness and ever dispelling the darkness of the demons, O right wondrous one.

Thy sin was manifestly recorded, as the Gospel hath said, O most honorable one; but, striving diligently, thou didst blot it out with the sweat of thine abstinence and the streams of thy tears.

Clad in men's garments, thou didst wisely hasten with diligence to join the assembly of monastics, O honored one, entering the fray against the princes of the wicked ruler of this world.

Thou didst manfully transform thy womanly weakness, O venerable one, truly showing thyself to be a precious gift, pleasing to God, by thy newname and guise, and by thy works.

In thy mortal body thou didst show forth a life like unto that of the incorporeal ones, O glorious Theodora, holding firmly to genuine abstinence, unceasing vigilance and constant prayer.

Thou didst boldly subject thyself to fasting for many days, like one of the incorporeal ones, O glorious one, but Christ strengthened thy weakness with His almighty power and nourished thee with divine grace.

"Behold my lowliness and tears; behold my sorrow! And lighten the heavy burden of my sin!" Theodora cried out to Him Who alone is able to save.

Drowning with the torrents of thy tears him who had deceitfully ensnared thee in his trap, protected by divine grace in thy safe haven thou didst vanquish him who hunteth men's souls with his net.

The ranks of the incorporeal ones were astonished, beholding thee in a body of clay, emulating their life and honorable ways, and vanquishing the enemy who before had seduced thee with falsehood, O Theodora.

God tamed the savagery of the wild beasts for thee, giving thee the grace of healing. And he who by thy hand was rescued from being devoured by a wild beast, and whose wounds thou didst heal, proclaimeth this, O glorious one.

With perfect mind thou didst nurture the babe, enduring cruel slander, giving thanks to the Benefactor Who gaveth thee strength and hath made thee wondrous, O most lauded Theodora.

Offering up an ever-flowing fountain of tears, afflicting thyself and groaning, with thanksgiving thou didst endure the monks' censure and shunning of thee, O divinely blessed one.

Taking thy sustenance from the sea, nurtured on wondrous plants, and dwelling with wild beasts in the wilderness, thou didst make thine abode in heaven, O right wondrous one.

Thou didst endure the burning of the day, and didst bear the frigid cold of night, warmed by the grace of the divine Spirit; wherefore, thou dost enjoy the blessedness of heaven.

The most crafty enemy afflicted thee with unbearable wounds, appearing to thee in illusions of thine imagination; but thou didst cast down his vain savagery, chanting: O God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

Thou didst fill the dry cisterns with water through thy supplications, O glorious one, manifestly working miracles, and magnifying God Who glorifieth thee. To Him do we cry out: O God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

In thy great boldness be thou ever mindful of those who celebrate thy memory, entreating the most compassionate God, to Whom we cry: O God of our fathers, blessed art Thou!

His mind illumined with purity, thine abbot was caught up and beheld the good things which the Lord prepared for thee, O Theodora: the radiant garden of paradise and the ineffable bridal-chamber, wherein thy Bridegroom, the Judge of the contest, hath made a dwelling for thee.

The choirs of the angels, martyrs and the venerable, preparing for thy soul, bore it up to the mansions of heaven, to the place where those who rejoice find rest there, wherein is the dwelling-place of those who cry out and exalt Christ supremely forever.

A multitude of monastics, having assembled, faithfully buried thy blessed body; for, beholding all-wondrous things, they acknowledged thine excellent qualities: for, though a woman, thou wast pleased to dwell bodily in themidst of men, protected by the hand of the Almighty, O divinely wise Theodora.

Achieving endurance through all-night vigils of supplication, thou didst extinguish the uprisings of the passions, didst sleep the sleep of the righteous,and hast passed over to the never-waning Light, crying out: Hymn the Lord, ye works, and exalt Him supremely forever!

Thou didst depart from the world like a star, O all-praised one, and hast shone forth in the life of heaven, having left us the virtues of thy life and thy corrections, like rays of light, illumining the hearts of all who celebrate thy memory with faith.

The gates of heaven were opened with splendor, admitting thee, O ever- memorable Theodora; and the Church of the first-born now hath thy sacred soul, which danceth with the elect, where the sounds are the sounds of those who keep festival and the never-waning light.

Thou hast found the reward for thy pangs, for thou didst hope for heavenly honor; thou caused desire to cease, for thou didst find its Source, and dost delight in good things, manifestly and purely beholding thy Bridegroom, O Theodora, as the angels have been vouchsafed to see Him.

As thou hast boldness in prayer, O ever-memorable honorable and right glorious Theodora, beg thou that He send down release from vexations, deliverance from the passions and correction of life upon those who praise thee and celebrate thine honored memory.