Icon of St. Loukas (Mosaic – 11th c.) – S383


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Church Feast Day 1





Hosias Loukas Monastery, Boeotia, Greece


11th c. (Early)


St. Loukas was an early 10th century hermit and lived a strict ascetic life on the slopes of the Helicon Mountain in Boeotnia, Greece, near Distomo, about 120 miles n.w. of Athens.  Because of his elevated life and great love for God, he was given the gift of wonder-working, knowing by God’s revelation, things to come.  He flowed myrrh as fragrant healing oil after his death.

Much of modern Greece was then a part of the Byzantine Empire, or the Eastern Roman Empire.  When the rise of Islam had occurred  in the early 7th century, a wave of Islamic warriors had set out to conquer first Arabia, then Egypt and northern Africa, Syria, Mesopotamia, Persia, Afghanistan, northern India, Spain, and the eastern parts of Asia Minor by a.d. 750 under the Caliphs.  Many of the Greek islands were also conquered, including Crete in a.d. 826.   Before he died in a.d. 953, St. Loukas predicted that the Emperor Romanos would reconquer Crete.  This came to pass in a.d. 961 by the armies of General Nicephorus Phocas under Emperor Romanos II.  The Monastery of Hagios Loukas is today one of the great examples of 10th century Byzantine architecture.