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Lucy of Syracuse

"Her rejected pagan bridegroom, Paschasius, denounced Lucy as a Christian"

Please see the Golden Legend on St Lucy " class="external">

I think you'll find Paschasius was Lucy's judge, not her suitor. Pip Wilson

Lucy of Syracuse (283-304) was a rich, young Christian who is venerated as a Saint by Catholic and Orthodox Christians.

Her Roman father died when she was young. Her mother, Eutychia, arranged a marriage for her. For three years she managed to keep the marriage on hold. To change the mother's mind about the girl's new faith, Lucy prayed at the tomb of Saint Agatha, and her mother's long haemorrhagic illness was cured. Her mother agreed with Lucy's desire to live for God, and Lucy became known as a patron of those with maladies like her mother's.

Her rejected pagan bridegroom, Paschasius, denounced Lucy as a Christian. The governor planned to force her into prostitution, but when guards went to fetch her, they could not move her even when they hitched her to a team of oxen. The governor ordered her killed instead. After torture that included having her eyes torn out, she was surrounded by bundles of wood which were set afire; they went out. She prophesied against her persecutors, and was executed by being stabbed to death with a dagger.

Mainly in Sweden the memory of Lucy (called Lucia) is celebrated each year on December 13, in a ceremony where a woman portraying Lucy, candles attached to her head, leads a procession of other women holding candles. The candles symbolize the fire that refused to take her life. The women usually sing christmas-carols during the procession.