St. Victoria

Often depicted with a knife reflecting her martyrdom, St. Victoria and Anatolia, her sister, were known as beautiful roman noblewomen. As Christians they refused the unwanted entreaties of potential suitors who were pagans. Their suitors revealed they were Christian and gained control of their liberty. They were imprisoned and starved by would-be suitors to no avail. They continued to refuse to marry the pagans.

The servants and guards sent by the suitor to tend her and hold Victoria captive all converted to Christianity much to the consternation of her suitor. After years of failure and frustration he turned her over to the authorities. She refused their order to marry or to sacrifice to the Gods and she was executed by being stabbed thought the heart dying a martyr. After her execution, lore has it that the executioner was struck with leprosy ding soon after and was eaten by worms.

One of only a handful of martyred saints whose killers also suffered illness and death as a direct consequence, Victoria displayed tremendous courage and faith under fire. Her feast day is Dec. 23.

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