Troparion of St Lucy of Sicily Tone 5
Adorned with the radiant robe of virginity,/ thou wast betrothed to Christ the Lifegiver,/ and didst disdain all mortal love./ Therefore thou didst bring to the Lord as a bridal gift/ the streams of thy martyr’s blood./ Intercede with Him for us all, O Virgin Martyr Lucy.
Kontakion of St Lucy of Sicily Tone 3
We honour thee, pure Virgin and trophy-bearer,/ and praise thine illustrious contest./ For thou didst desire only the beauty of Christ/ and didst disdain all things corruptible./ O Lucy, when thou wast beheaded thou didst receive incorruptible glory.
From the Prolog:
With her mother, Lucy visited the grave of St. Agatha in Catania, where St. Agatha appeared to her. Her mother, who had dropsy, was then miraculously healed in the church. Lucy distributed all her goods to the poor, and this embittered her betrothed, who accused her of being a Christian before Paschasius the judge. The wicked judge ordered that she be taken to a brothel in order to defile her. However, by the power of God she remained immovable, as if rooted to the earth, and not even a multitude of people was able to move her from that spot. Then an enraged pagan pierced her throat with a sword and she gave up her soul to God and took up her habitation in the Kingdom of Eternity. Lucy suffered in the year 304.
OCA’s life of St Lucy:
Saint Lucy was born in Syracuse, Sicily during the reign of Diocletian. She distributed her wealth to the poor, and made a vow of virginity. Since she refused to marry him, a rejected suitor denounced her to the prefect Paschasius as a Christian, and she was arrested. She was sentenced to be defiled in a brothel, but with God’s help she preserved her purity.
Then the pagans attempted to burn her alive, but she was not harmed by the fire. Finally, she was killed by a sword thrust to the throat.
The name Lucy (Lucia) is derived for the Latin word for light (lux), and so she is often invoked for afflictions of the eyes. There is a tradition that she was blinded by her torturers, and the church of San Giovanni Maggiore in Naples even claims to possess her eyes.
Today’s saint should not be confused with St Lucy of Campania (July 6).
Services to St Lucy (from Orthodox England)
From this Catholic website:
Saint Lucy’s Day, December 13, is celebrated by several European nations.
In Sweden, the oldest (or youngest) daughter in each household traditionally carries a tray of coffee and traditional pastries called lussekatter (Lucy cats) to her parents before they arise in the morning. She wears a white gown, scarlet sash, and a crown of greens and four, seven, or nine lighted candles . Her brothers, wearing white shirts and tall, cone-shaped hats decorated with stars, and her sisters, all in white and carrying lighted candles, follow her. In many towns, a Saint Lucy is chosen to carry coffee and buns to each house. She and her followers, each bearing a lighted candle, sing carols as they traverse the dark streets while St. Steven, represented by a man on horseback, leads the way. The procession is done in memory of Saint Lucy’s traversing darkened woods to bring bread and other food to the poor.
In Switzerland, St Lucy strolls around the village with Father Christmas, giving gifts to the girls while he gives gifts to the boys.
In Venice, folks celebrate the Feast of St. Lucy by enjoying fried cheese.
Italians eat small cakes or biscotti shaped like eyes, light huge bonfires, and conduct evening candlelight processions, all in honor of Saint Lucy.
Sicilians pay tribute to a miracle performed by St Lucy during a famine in 1582. At that time, she brought a flotilla of grain-bearing ships to starving Sicily, whose citizens cooked and ate the wheat without taking time to grind it into flour. Thus, on St. Lucy’s Day, Sicilians don’t eat anything made with wheat flour. Instead they eat cooked wheat called cuccia.