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Faithful Women in History
CHRISTIAN MARTYRS AND THEIR LEGACY.
Nadaryah Gomez
 We are told in scripture that in the world we will have tribulation. Jn.16:33
 Says;
 “These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world
ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.”
 Also in Ps 91:15-16 we are told
 “He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver
him, and honour him.”
 Ps 138:7 says
 “Though I walk in the midst of trouble, thou wilt revive me: thou shalt stretch forth
thine hand against the wrath of mine enemies.”
 2 Cor 7:4-6
 4 Great is my boldness of speech toward you, great is my glorying of you: I am
filled with comfort, I am exceeding joyful in all our tribulation.
 5 For, when we were come into Macedonia, our flesh had no rest, but we were
troubled on every side; without were fightings, within were fears.
 6 Nevertheless God, that comforteth those that are cast down, comforted us by
the coming of Titus.”
 What is Tribulation? NOUN
 (tribulations)
 a cause of great trouble or suffering:
 "the tribulations of being a megastar"
 synonyms: problems · troubles · difficulties · misfortunes · strains ·
 [more]
 trials · tribulations · trials and tribulations · worries · anxieties · concerns · pain · suffering ·
hardship · misery · woe · affliction · distress · disquiet · malaise · headaches · probs · hassles ·
travails
 a state of great trouble or suffering:
 "his time of tribulation was just beginning"
 synonyms: trouble · worry · anxiety · burden · cross to bear ·
 [more]
 There may be things that we may face from day to day, but we must not give
up.
 Rom 5:3-5 tells us
 “And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation
worketh patience;
 4 And patience, experience; and experience, hope:
 5 And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in
our hearts by the Holy Ghost”
 Rom 8:35-39
 “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or
persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?
 36 As it is written, for thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as
sheep for the slaughter.
 37 Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.
 38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor
powers, nor things present, nor things to come,
 39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from
the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
 1 Peter 1:7 -Says
 “ That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that
perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour
and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:”
 Rom 12:12 “Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer”
 2 Thess 1:4
 “So that we ourselves glory in you in the churches of God for your patience and
and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that ye endure”
 1 Peter 5:7-10
 “Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.
 8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion,
walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:
 9 Whom resist steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are
accomplished in your brethren that are in the world.
 10 But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ
Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen,
settle you.”
The faithfulness of Easter. EST 4:16
 “Go, gather together all the Jews that are present in Shushan,
and fast ye for me, and neither eat nor drink three days, night
or day: I also and my maidens will fast likewise; and so will I go
in unto the king, which is not according to the law: and if I
perish, I perish.”
The faithfulness of Ruth. Ruth 1:3-5,16
 “ And Elimelech Naomi's husband died; and she was left,
and her two sons.
 4 And they took them wives of the women of Moab; the
name of the one was Orpah, and the name of the other
Ruth: and they dwelled there about ten years.
 5 And Mahlon and Chilion died also both of them; and the
woman was left of her two sons and her husband.
 Vs16-- And Ruth said, Intreat me not to leave thee, or to
return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I
will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people
shall be my people, and thy God my God.”
Felicitas (101 – 162)

Her life is celebrated on November 23 by both the
Roman Catholic and Orthodox Churches. She and her
seven sons were all martyred in Rome. Her
tremendous conversion efforts were noticed by the
pagan priests who then notified the Emperor. Before
being martyred, she witnessed the death of each of
her sons. The authorities gave her the opportunity to
recant her witness after each son’s death, but she
refused.
Cecilia (~ 176)

Cecilia was a noblewoman in Rome who vowed with her
newfound faith to a life of celibacy. That was not her
father’s plan and she was forced to marry instead. Her
martyrdom came under Emperor Marcus Aurelius. First,
both her brothers were arrested and killed for refusing to
sacrifice to the gods. After Cecilia was found to have
converted more than 400 people, she was condemned to
die by heat (or suffocation) in the Roman baths. The fires
were struck and after a full day she didn’t even sweat. An
executioner came to behead her. He tried three times but
could not complete it. After three days she bleed to her
death but never recanted her faith.
Blandina (162 – 177)

Blandina also died during the reign of Emperor Marcus
Aurelius in the city of Lyon in Asia Minor. Blandina was
arrested along with other Christians. She was a slave and
not a Roman citizen. This is important because if she were a
Roman citizen her death would not include torture. A quick
beheading should be her fate. Instead, she withstood so
much torture that it is said the perpetrators became tired
under her strength. Finally, she was taken to an
amphitheatre and bound to a stake. Wild animals were let
loose. However, they did not touch her. Days past and
finally, she was killed by throwing her in front of a wild steer.
Perpetua (- 203)

Perpetua died in modern day Tunisia in Northern Africa
(Carthage at the time). It was Emperor Septimius
Severus’s son’s birthday and Perpetua was one of several
new Christian converts rounded up to celebrate the
special day in a display of horrible violence. It’s not known
whether Severus was even involved. We do know that he
put forward laws against conversion to Christianity.
Perpetua ultimately died by directing the gladiator’s
sword to her neck after being trampled and gored by bull
did not work.
Catherine of Alexandria (287- 305)

At only 18, Catherine was converting hundreds to Christianity. And,
when a persecution of Christians broke out, she tried to use her
influence as the daughter of the Alexandrian governor to
persuade the emperor. She goes to the emperor and accuses him
of cruel acts. He can’t believe her boldness and calls for 50 of the
best pagan philosophers to debate her over her Christian beliefs.
She wins and her fine crafted arguments even converts some of
the listeners. She’s imprisoned. 200 visitors come to see her
including the emperor’s wife. All are converted to Christianity.
She’s condemned to die by the breaking wheel but when she
touches it falls to pieces. In frustration, she is finally beheaded.
Lucia of Syracuse (283 – 304)

The Diocletianic Persecution is also called the Great
Persecution because it was the worst. Emperor Diocletian
had the goal of wiping away Christianity forever. Lucia was
one of thousands and thousands of people killed for their
faith between 303 up until the toleration verdict by
Constantine in 313. Lucia refused to burn incense in
worship of the governor of Syracuse so she was sentenced
to die. When the guards came to take her, they couldn’t
move her. They tried using an ox but she would not budge.
Then, they attempted to light her on fire where she sat,
assembling straw around her. She wouldn’t burn. Finally,
she died by sword.
Magdalene of Nagasaki (1611- October
16, 1634)

Magdalene would follow her parents as a martyr. Her
parents died in 1620. During this period in Japan,
Christianity was outlawed and the penalty was death.
Since she was only 9 when she lost her parents, she
received much counsel from two Augustinian friars
who were also martyred. At the age of 23, she
decided to surrender to authorities and publicly
declare herself a follower of Jesus. After 13 days of
torture, she was strangled to death in a hole upside
down.
Narcissa Prentiss Whitman (March 14,
1808 – Nov 29, 1847)

Narcissa served as a missionary to the Oregon territory. She was
the first white woman to make the journey. She wanted to bring
the message of Jesus to the native Cayuse and Nez Perce tribes in
what is now Walla Walla Washington. There was already a fort
near their mission site and she and her husband Marcus, a doctor,
were to care for and evangelize the tribal people. They spent 11
years in ministry. They ended up dying by the hand of Tiloukaikt
and his men because of their suspicion of the white people not
dying of measles like his people, something that was more than
unfortunate since immunity due to past exposure had everything
to do with the reason.
Lucy Yi Zhenmei (December 9, 1815 –
February 19, 1862)

Lucy was born to a Catholic family in China. She committed
her life to Christ at a young age and worked to support her
family as well as teaching the women at her parish. She
was enthusiastic about evangelism despite the dangers she
knew about if the authorities discovered her fervor. In 1861,
she worked with Father Wen Nair to establish a mission in
Jiashan Long. In that area, the provincial governor began
to arrest Christians and ask them to renounce their faith.
Father Nair and others in the mission, including Lucy, were
arrested and sentenced to death without a trial. They all
were beheaded the next day.
Olympia Morata
 Olympia Morata, I must confess, is my personal favorite of
all these women. Her life was tragically short, but a brilliant
testimony to her faith and her incredible breadth and depth
of learning. Her father was an Italian scholar, and brought
her up so that by the age of 12, she was called as a
companion and tutor to the young Anna d’Este of Ferrara,
the future wife of the (infamous) François, Duc de Guise.
During her time at the court of Ferrara, she was invited to
lecture to the court in Greek and Latin! After leaving court
to care for her declining father, she fell out of favor with the
Duke. It seems that it was during this time that these
convictions, previously held more intellectually along with
her broad philosophical and literary interests, now
awakened in her a true and living faith in Jesus Christ, and
marked a turning point in her life. It was also during this
time that Andreas Grunthler, a Reformed German doctor,
classically-trained and a lover of literature, sought her hand
in marriage.
 Olympia fell passionately in love with him, and they married
around 1550. Life was not easy, as they travelled back to Germany
where her husband hoped to find a position in a university. They
met with persecution, were even imprisoned, and barely escaped
with their lives before finally finding peace in Heidelberg. Her
health suffered as a result, and when the Elector Palatine offered
her the incredible position of lecturing at a university, she seems
to have turned it down. She died shortly thereafter, followed by
her husband and her little brother. Olympia’s faith seems to have
only grown stronger throughout her life and its trials. During her
life, she wrote dialogues, Latin and Greek letters (including love
letters in Latin to her husband!), a popular Greek psalter, and
more. Theodore de Beze, himself one of the Reformation’s
greatest classicists and theologians, even wrote a eulogy for her.
Her short but faithful life was well-summed up in her own words
when she wrote, “There is no part of the world so distant that we
would not be glad to live in it, if we could but serve God there
with full liberty of conscience.” (The Life of Olympia Morata, 128.)
SUMMARY
 The way we ought to live as Christian women, Heb 12:1-2
 “Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of
witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily
beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,
 2 looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy
that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set
down at the right hand of the throne of God”
 Titus 2:1-5
 “But speak thou the things which become sound doctrine:
 2 That the aged men be sober, grave, temperate, sound in faith, in charity, in
patience.
 3 The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not
false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things;
 4 That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love
their children,
 5 To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands,
that the word of God be not blasphemed.”
 We are to be thankful for the knowledge of the Truth.
 2 Cor 2:14
 “Now thanks be unto God, which always causeth us to triumph in Christ, and
maketh manifest the savour of his knowledge by us in every place.”

 1 Tim 6:12
 “Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also
called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.”
 AMEN.
 The End

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Faithful women in history

  • 1. Faithful Women in History CHRISTIAN MARTYRS AND THEIR LEGACY. Nadaryah Gomez
  • 2.  We are told in scripture that in the world we will have tribulation. Jn.16:33  Says;  “These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.”  Also in Ps 91:15-16 we are told  “He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him.”  Ps 138:7 says  “Though I walk in the midst of trouble, thou wilt revive me: thou shalt stretch forth thine hand against the wrath of mine enemies.”
  • 3.  2 Cor 7:4-6  4 Great is my boldness of speech toward you, great is my glorying of you: I am filled with comfort, I am exceeding joyful in all our tribulation.  5 For, when we were come into Macedonia, our flesh had no rest, but we were troubled on every side; without were fightings, within were fears.  6 Nevertheless God, that comforteth those that are cast down, comforted us by the coming of Titus.”
  • 4.  What is Tribulation? NOUN  (tribulations)  a cause of great trouble or suffering:  "the tribulations of being a megastar"  synonyms: problems · troubles · difficulties · misfortunes · strains ·  [more]  trials · tribulations · trials and tribulations · worries · anxieties · concerns · pain · suffering · hardship · misery · woe · affliction · distress · disquiet · malaise · headaches · probs · hassles · travails  a state of great trouble or suffering:  "his time of tribulation was just beginning"  synonyms: trouble · worry · anxiety · burden · cross to bear ·  [more]
  • 5.  There may be things that we may face from day to day, but we must not give up.  Rom 5:3-5 tells us  “And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience;  4 And patience, experience; and experience, hope:  5 And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost”
  • 6.  Rom 8:35-39  “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?  36 As it is written, for thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.  37 Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.  38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,  39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
  • 7.  1 Peter 1:7 -Says  “ That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:”  Rom 12:12 “Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer”  2 Thess 1:4  “So that we ourselves glory in you in the churches of God for your patience and and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that ye endure”
  • 8.  1 Peter 5:7-10  “Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.  8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:  9 Whom resist steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world.  10 But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you.”
  • 9. The faithfulness of Easter. EST 4:16  “Go, gather together all the Jews that are present in Shushan, and fast ye for me, and neither eat nor drink three days, night or day: I also and my maidens will fast likewise; and so will I go in unto the king, which is not according to the law: and if I perish, I perish.”
  • 10. The faithfulness of Ruth. Ruth 1:3-5,16  “ And Elimelech Naomi's husband died; and she was left, and her two sons.  4 And they took them wives of the women of Moab; the name of the one was Orpah, and the name of the other Ruth: and they dwelled there about ten years.  5 And Mahlon and Chilion died also both of them; and the woman was left of her two sons and her husband.  Vs16-- And Ruth said, Intreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God.”
  • 11. Felicitas (101 – 162)  Her life is celebrated on November 23 by both the Roman Catholic and Orthodox Churches. She and her seven sons were all martyred in Rome. Her tremendous conversion efforts were noticed by the pagan priests who then notified the Emperor. Before being martyred, she witnessed the death of each of her sons. The authorities gave her the opportunity to recant her witness after each son’s death, but she refused.
  • 12. Cecilia (~ 176)  Cecilia was a noblewoman in Rome who vowed with her newfound faith to a life of celibacy. That was not her father’s plan and she was forced to marry instead. Her martyrdom came under Emperor Marcus Aurelius. First, both her brothers were arrested and killed for refusing to sacrifice to the gods. After Cecilia was found to have converted more than 400 people, she was condemned to die by heat (or suffocation) in the Roman baths. The fires were struck and after a full day she didn’t even sweat. An executioner came to behead her. He tried three times but could not complete it. After three days she bleed to her death but never recanted her faith.
  • 13. Blandina (162 – 177)  Blandina also died during the reign of Emperor Marcus Aurelius in the city of Lyon in Asia Minor. Blandina was arrested along with other Christians. She was a slave and not a Roman citizen. This is important because if she were a Roman citizen her death would not include torture. A quick beheading should be her fate. Instead, she withstood so much torture that it is said the perpetrators became tired under her strength. Finally, she was taken to an amphitheatre and bound to a stake. Wild animals were let loose. However, they did not touch her. Days past and finally, she was killed by throwing her in front of a wild steer.
  • 14. Perpetua (- 203)  Perpetua died in modern day Tunisia in Northern Africa (Carthage at the time). It was Emperor Septimius Severus’s son’s birthday and Perpetua was one of several new Christian converts rounded up to celebrate the special day in a display of horrible violence. It’s not known whether Severus was even involved. We do know that he put forward laws against conversion to Christianity. Perpetua ultimately died by directing the gladiator’s sword to her neck after being trampled and gored by bull did not work.
  • 15. Catherine of Alexandria (287- 305)  At only 18, Catherine was converting hundreds to Christianity. And, when a persecution of Christians broke out, she tried to use her influence as the daughter of the Alexandrian governor to persuade the emperor. She goes to the emperor and accuses him of cruel acts. He can’t believe her boldness and calls for 50 of the best pagan philosophers to debate her over her Christian beliefs. She wins and her fine crafted arguments even converts some of the listeners. She’s imprisoned. 200 visitors come to see her including the emperor’s wife. All are converted to Christianity. She’s condemned to die by the breaking wheel but when she touches it falls to pieces. In frustration, she is finally beheaded.
  • 16. Lucia of Syracuse (283 – 304)  The Diocletianic Persecution is also called the Great Persecution because it was the worst. Emperor Diocletian had the goal of wiping away Christianity forever. Lucia was one of thousands and thousands of people killed for their faith between 303 up until the toleration verdict by Constantine in 313. Lucia refused to burn incense in worship of the governor of Syracuse so she was sentenced to die. When the guards came to take her, they couldn’t move her. They tried using an ox but she would not budge. Then, they attempted to light her on fire where she sat, assembling straw around her. She wouldn’t burn. Finally, she died by sword.
  • 17. Magdalene of Nagasaki (1611- October 16, 1634)  Magdalene would follow her parents as a martyr. Her parents died in 1620. During this period in Japan, Christianity was outlawed and the penalty was death. Since she was only 9 when she lost her parents, she received much counsel from two Augustinian friars who were also martyred. At the age of 23, she decided to surrender to authorities and publicly declare herself a follower of Jesus. After 13 days of torture, she was strangled to death in a hole upside down.
  • 18. Narcissa Prentiss Whitman (March 14, 1808 – Nov 29, 1847)  Narcissa served as a missionary to the Oregon territory. She was the first white woman to make the journey. She wanted to bring the message of Jesus to the native Cayuse and Nez Perce tribes in what is now Walla Walla Washington. There was already a fort near their mission site and she and her husband Marcus, a doctor, were to care for and evangelize the tribal people. They spent 11 years in ministry. They ended up dying by the hand of Tiloukaikt and his men because of their suspicion of the white people not dying of measles like his people, something that was more than unfortunate since immunity due to past exposure had everything to do with the reason.
  • 19. Lucy Yi Zhenmei (December 9, 1815 – February 19, 1862)  Lucy was born to a Catholic family in China. She committed her life to Christ at a young age and worked to support her family as well as teaching the women at her parish. She was enthusiastic about evangelism despite the dangers she knew about if the authorities discovered her fervor. In 1861, she worked with Father Wen Nair to establish a mission in Jiashan Long. In that area, the provincial governor began to arrest Christians and ask them to renounce their faith. Father Nair and others in the mission, including Lucy, were arrested and sentenced to death without a trial. They all were beheaded the next day.
  • 20. Olympia Morata  Olympia Morata, I must confess, is my personal favorite of all these women. Her life was tragically short, but a brilliant testimony to her faith and her incredible breadth and depth of learning. Her father was an Italian scholar, and brought her up so that by the age of 12, she was called as a companion and tutor to the young Anna d’Este of Ferrara, the future wife of the (infamous) François, Duc de Guise. During her time at the court of Ferrara, she was invited to lecture to the court in Greek and Latin! After leaving court to care for her declining father, she fell out of favor with the Duke. It seems that it was during this time that these convictions, previously held more intellectually along with her broad philosophical and literary interests, now awakened in her a true and living faith in Jesus Christ, and marked a turning point in her life. It was also during this time that Andreas Grunthler, a Reformed German doctor, classically-trained and a lover of literature, sought her hand in marriage.
  • 21.  Olympia fell passionately in love with him, and they married around 1550. Life was not easy, as they travelled back to Germany where her husband hoped to find a position in a university. They met with persecution, were even imprisoned, and barely escaped with their lives before finally finding peace in Heidelberg. Her health suffered as a result, and when the Elector Palatine offered her the incredible position of lecturing at a university, she seems to have turned it down. She died shortly thereafter, followed by her husband and her little brother. Olympia’s faith seems to have only grown stronger throughout her life and its trials. During her life, she wrote dialogues, Latin and Greek letters (including love letters in Latin to her husband!), a popular Greek psalter, and more. Theodore de Beze, himself one of the Reformation’s greatest classicists and theologians, even wrote a eulogy for her. Her short but faithful life was well-summed up in her own words when she wrote, “There is no part of the world so distant that we would not be glad to live in it, if we could but serve God there with full liberty of conscience.” (The Life of Olympia Morata, 128.)
  • 22. SUMMARY  The way we ought to live as Christian women, Heb 12:1-2  “Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,  2 looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God”
  • 23.  Titus 2:1-5  “But speak thou the things which become sound doctrine:  2 That the aged men be sober, grave, temperate, sound in faith, in charity, in patience.  3 The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things;  4 That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children,  5 To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.”
  • 24.  We are to be thankful for the knowledge of the Truth.  2 Cor 2:14  “Now thanks be unto God, which always causeth us to triumph in Christ, and maketh manifest the savour of his knowledge by us in every place.”   1 Tim 6:12  “Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.”  AMEN.