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Saints for Various Needs

Synaxis of All Saints
Synaxis of All Saints

“We should seek the intercessions and the fervent prayers of the saints, because they have special ‘boldness’ (parresia), before God.” Saint John Chrysostom


The Orthodox Church is a living and vibrant community of faithful Christians made up of the members of the Church militant and the church triumphant. The Church militant are those of us who are still part of this world, diligently striving to live our lives according to God’s teachings and commandments. The Church triumphant are those individuals who have been called by God to be with Him in paradise and continue to pray for us.

Holiness or sainthood is a gift given by God to mankind through the Holy Spirit. Man’s effort to become a participant in the life of divine holiness is indispensable, but sanctification itself is the work of the Holy Trinity, especially through the sanctifying power of Jesus Christ.

Bishop Kallistos Ware, a famous Orthodox Theologian, has stated that “in private, an Orthodox Christian is free to ask for the prayers of any member of the Church, whether canonized or not. It would be perfectly normal for an Orthodox child, if orphaned, to end his evening prayers by asking for the intercessions, not only of the Mother of God and the saints, but his own mother and father. In its public worship, however, the church usually prays only to those whom it has officially proclaimed as saints.”

In the Orthodox Church there are six classifications of Saints:

  1. The Apostles, who were the first ones to spread the message of the Incarnation of the Word of God and of salvation through Christ.
  2. The Prophets, because they predicted and prophesied the coming of the Messiah.
  3. The Martyrs, for sacrificing their lives and fearlessly confessing Jesus Christ as the Son of God and the Savior of mankind.
  4. The Fathers and Hierarchs of the Church, who excelled in explaining and defending, by word and deed, the Christian Faith.
  5. The Monastics, who lived in the desert and dedicated themselves to spiritual exercise (askesis), reaching, as far as possible, perfection in Christ.
  6. The Just, those who lived in the world, leading exemplary lives as clergy or laity with their families, becoming examples for imitation in society.

Each and every one among these saints has his or her own calling and characteristics: they all fought the “good fight for the faith” (I Tim. 6.12 and II Tim. 4.7). All of them applied in their lives the scriptural virtues of “justice, piety, fidelity, love, fortitude and gentleness” (I Tim. 6.11).

The ultimate goal of humankind is to imitate God and live the life of deification (theosis). Saint Maximos the Confessor describes saints as being men and women who have avoided the unnatural development of the soul, that is, sin, and tried to live the natural way of life, turning and looking always towards God, thus achieving total unity with God through the Holy Spirit. This is why we look to the example of their lives for strength and encouragement, and why we continue to pray to them to intercede on our behalf to our Lord.

The following is a list of Saints called upon for special purposes: *

To Have a Child

  • St. Anna, Mother of the Theotokos
  • St. Elizabeth, Mother of the Forerunner
  • St. Sabbas the Sanctified of Palestine
  • St. Irene Chrysovolantou

For Safe Childbirth

  • St. Eleftherios

For the Care and Protection of Infants

  • St. Stylianos

For Young People

  • Holy Great Martyr Demetrios the Wonderworker

Delivery from Sudden Death

  • St. Barbara the Great Martyr

Against Drinking

  • Holy Martyr Boniface and the Righteous Aglais

For Travelers

  • St. Nicholas: in general, and specifically for sea travel
  • St. John the Russian: for transport, auto, busses
  • St. Niphon, Patriarch of Constantinople: for safety at sea

For Cobblers

  • St. Eustathius the Cobbler of Georgia

For Physicians

  • St. Panteleimon
  • The Holy Unmercenaries, Saints Cosmas and Damian
  • For the Kitchen, Home
  • St. Euphrosynos the Cook
  • St. Sergius of Radonezh: for baking
  • Sts. Spyridon and Nikodim of Kievo-Pechersk: Prosphora making

For Trading

  • St. Paraskeva

For Headaches

  • Holy New Martyr Demas of Smyrna

For Eyes

  • St. Paraskeva

For Ears

  • St. Spyridon the Wonderworker

For Teeth

  • St. Antipas of Pergamum

For Hernias and Intestinal Disorders

  • Holy Great Martyr Artemius
  • St. Artemius of Verkola

For Throat

  • St. Blaise of Sebastia

For Finding Employment

  • St. Xenia of St. Petersburg

For Help in Studies

  • The Three Hierarchs:St. Basil the Great, St. John Chrysostom, St. Gregory the Theologian
  • St. Sergius of Radonezh
  • St. John of Kronstadt
  • St. Justin the Philosopher

For Church-Chanting

  • St. Romanos the Melodist

For Iconographers

  • St. Luke the Apostle and Evangelist
  • St. John of Damascus

For Patient Endurance of Affliction

  • St. Job the Much-Suffering
  • Holy Forty Martyrs of Sebastia: especially in freezing cold weather
  • Holy Forty-Two Martyrs of Amorion

For Protection Against Thieves

  • St. Gregory the Wonderworker of Kievo-Pechersk

For Stone-workers

  • Holy Martyrs Florus and Laurus

For Soldiers

  • Holy Archangel Michael
  • St. George the Great Martyr
  • St. Barbara the Great Martyr

For Spiritual Help, Consolation and Compunction

  • St. Ephraim the Syrian
  • St. Alexis the Man of God
  • St. Seraphim of Sarov

For a Good End to One’s Life

  • Holy Archangel Michael
  • St. Niphon, Patriarch of Constantinople

For Captives and Court Cases

  • St. Onouphrios the Great
  • St. Peter of Athos
  • St. George the Great Martyr

For Help in Distress, Poverty, Etc.

  • St. Nicholas the Wonderworker
  • St. John the Almsgiver of Alexandria
  • St. John of Kronstadt

For Finding Things

  • St. Phanourios the Great Martyr
  • St. Menas the Great Martyr of Egypt

For Meeting a Difficult Situation, an Interview, Etc.

  • St. David the Prophet, Psalmist and King
  • The Holy Unmercenaries and Healers
  • SS. Cosmas and Damian of Rome
  • SS. Panteleimon and Hermolaus
  • St. Julian the Martyr
  • St. John of Kronstadt
  • St. Nectarios of Aegina
  • Holy Archangel Raphael

For Animals and Livestock

  • St. George: cattle and herds
  • St. Parthenius of Radovysdius: cattle
  • SS. Spevsippus, Elesippus and Melevsippus: horses
  • St. Tryphon: geese

For Protection of Crops from Pests

  • St. Michael of Synnada

For the Protection of Gardens Against Pests

  • Holy Great Martyr Tryphon: also for hunters and Patron of Moscow

Against Demons and Witchcraft

  • SS. Cyprian and Justina
  • St. Theodore Sykeote
  • St. Mitrophan of Voronezh

For Chastity and Help in Carnal Warfare

  • St. John the Forerunner
  • St. Demetrios the Great Martyr
  • St. John the Much-Suffering
  • Holy Martyr Theodore the Byzantine
  • Holy Martyr Ignatios of Athos
  • St. Mary of Egypt
  • St. Joseph the All-Comely
  • St. Susanna [Old Testament]

For Mental Disorders

  • St. Naum of Ochrid
  • St. Anastasia
  • St. Gerasimos of Cephalonia: the possessed

Against Plague

  • St. Haralambos
  • St. Marina the Great Martyr

For Help Against Quick-Temper and Despondency

  • St. Tikhon of Zadonsk

For Workers in Hospitals

  • Holy Unmercenaries Saints Cosmas and Damian
  • St. Dositheus, Disciple of Abba Dorotheus

For Guilelessness and Simplicity

  • Holy Apostle Nathaniel and St. Paul the Simple

* Reprinted from Orthodox Family Life. Volume 3, Issue 3. Spring 1998