Great-Martyr Barbara

December 17/4

Happy Feast and many years to all celebrating St. Barbara and St. Juliana today!

St. Barbara Icon seen above, in Hosios Loukas Monastery Church, Distomo, Greece – 2004. Reflections of the church’s ceiling arches above, are visible on the icon.

11th Century St. Barbara’s Church, Carved in Rock – Cappadocia, 2004

Great-Martyr Barbara and St. Juliana on Wall Fresco, Interior of 11th Century Church, Cappadocia – 2004

Interior of 11th Century St. Barbara’s Church, Cappadocia – 2004

Great-Martyr Barbara Troparion, Tone 8

Let us honour the holy Barbara; for the most honoured one broke the snares of the enemy// and was delivered from them like a bird, with the help and aid of the Cross.

St. Barbara is called upon for protection against sudden death, lightening, fire, and to aid soldiers, and firefighters.

St. Barbara was born in the Greek city of Heliopolis in Syria, now called Baalbek, in eastern Lebanon. St. Barbara’s feast day is known as Eid il-Burbara to Christians in Jordan, Syria and Lebanon, and there is a special St. Barbara’s Day dessert made to celebrate. Although the dish is traditionally prepared from boiled wheat hulls, rose water, cinnamon, anise and nuts, I like to use Cream of Wheat. This aromatic sweet recalls the tradition that freshly planted wheat fields miraculously sprung up behind St. Barbara covering her initial escape path to the mountains.

Here is my own festal and vegan (fasting-friendly) recipe for St. Barbara’s Day Dessert.

Holy Great-Martyr Barbara and St. Juliana, pray to God for us!

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