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Euphrasia of Constantinople

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Saint Euphrasia
Born 380 AD, Constantinople, Eastern Roman Empire
Died March 13, 410 AD, Constantinople
Venerated in Roman Catholic Church
Eastern Orthodox Church
Feast March 13

Saint Euphrasia (380 – March 13, 410 AD) was the only daughter of Antigonus, a nobleman of the court of Emperor Theodosius I, to whom he was related, and of Euphrasia, his wife, a noble and virtuous lady. After her birth, St. Euphrasia's parents bound themselves by a vow to live together in perpetual continence. When Antigonus died his widow and young daughter withdrew together to Egypt, near a monastery of nuns who led a very austere life. This was less than a century since St. Anthony had established his first monastery; but monasticism in that time had spread with incredible speed.

At seven years of age the youthful Euphrasia begged that she might be permitted to serve God in this monastery. Her mother made the sacrifice and left her daughter in the hands of the Abbess. The pious mother died soon after; her last words to St. Euphrasia were to forget that she was of royal blood and to serve God with humility.

Hearing of her mother's death the Emperor Theodosius I sent for the younger Euphrasia, whom he had promised in marriage to a young senator. She responded with a letter to the Emperor declining the offer to marry, and requesting that all her earthly possessions be given to the poor, the orphans and the Church, and that her personal slaves be set free.[1] Theodosius was moved to tears and set about exacting St. Euphrasia's request before his own death in 395.

St. Euphrasia was favored by Heaven with the gift of miracles before and after her death in the year 410. Her feast day is March 13.

See also

External links


  1. "Lives of the Saints: For Every Day of the Year" edited by Rev. Hugo Hoever, S.O.Cist., Ph.D., pp. 105-106

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