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December 3, 2021

Orthodox Church celebrates St. Parascheva today

Orthodox Christians celebrate, on Thursday, the feast of St. Parascheva. Orthodox and Roman Catholics alike, from Romania and abroad, come, as they do every year, to pay homage to St. Parascheva’s relics, as well as to the relics of other saints brought on a pilgrimage on this occasion.

St. Parascheva is honoured across Romania, but she is considered the patron saint of Moldavia.

On this occasion, the Patriarch of the Romanian Orthodox Church (BOR), Daniel, will officiate, on Thursday, in Iasi, the Holy Mass, alongside a synod of hierarchs, priests and deans. Patriarch Daniel was, for 17 years, between 1990 and 2007, the head of the Metropolitan Church of Moldavia and Bucovina.

St. Parascheva lived in the first half of the 11th century. She was born in Epivat (today, Boiados) in Thracia, on the shore of the Sea of Marmara, near Constantinople. She left home while still a child, stopping in Constantinople, then lived for five years at the Saint Mary’s Convent in Heraclea. Hence she headed for the Holy Land, namely, to Jerusalem. She joined a convent in Jordan, where she devoted herself to a life of lent and prayer. Parascheva died aged 27, in Epivat. After being buried initially, her body was unearthed and laid in the Holy Apostles’ Church in Epivat, where it remained for 200 years. St. Parascheva was canonized by the Holy Synod of BOR on February 28, 1950.

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