Edit Sections


St. Zlata of Meglen
St. Ilija Church, Mississauga

St. Zlata lived in the second half of the 18th century. She was born in the village of Slatino, Meglen, in Aegean Macedonia her parents, both Macedonians, were very poor.

She was a beautiful young girl possessed of a strong Christian faith. As she grew older she grew even more beautiful. One day when she was in the forest gathering firewood, a group of Turkish men saw her and, entranced by her beauty, kidnapped her. They took her to the house of their leader who offered his hand in marriage, and untold wealth if she would convert to Islam. She refused, so he threatened her with violence and unspeakable suffering if she didn’t convert. But Zlata answered, “I believe in, and bow only to Jesus Christ. I will never renounce Him even if you kill me and cut my body to pieces.

Realizing that threats would never sway her he sent young Turkish girls to tell her of their life of luxury and privilege, and promised the same to her if she would convert, but still she refused.

Finally the Turk sent for her parents and three sisters. He told them he would kill them and Zlata if she didn’t change her mind. In order to save their lives they asked her to convert. “All of us will be killed if you do not change your religion”, said her father, “but God is merciful and He will forgive all your sins.” Zlata was torn between her love for her parents and sisters and her love of Christ. After many nights of prayer and soul searching she finally made her decision. She called her parents and sisters and told them, “If you try to convince me to renounce Jesus Christ, then I will renounce you. My Father will be Jesus Christ and my mother His Most Poor Mother.” The Turks realizing she would not easily renounce Christianity decided to use harsher methods. They tortured her every day for three months, beating her with bats and belts until her whole body was bleeding. They impaled her head with a hot iron bar but still she would not renounce her faith.

With God’s grace the young Zlata endured her pain. Finally, her family’s spiritual father from Aton’s monastery Stavronikita the prolegomena Timothy arrived. Zlata begged him to pray to God to end her suffering and let her die with dignity.

God heard her prayers and glorified her. The Turks in their anger hung her on a pear tree then cut her body into small pieces. Finally, on October 26, 1795, like gold purified in a fire of suffering St Zlata died and gave her soul to God.

The Macedonian Orthodox Church “St. Ilija”, Mississauga, has two altars. The main altar is dedicated to St. Ilija the Prophet, the smaller one is dedicated to St. Zlata of Meglen. Please come to visit our new Church.

Also please join us on Divine Liturgy, October 26th 2006, the patron day of St. Zlata of Meglen

Thank you.

Visit our web-site: http://www.st-ilija.org/


© 2006  MacedonianLife.com