Saint Martyr Kirana (Kerana) was born in the first half of the 18th century 1731 A.D. in the Thessaloniki village of (Ossa) Avisona, in the family of pious Christians in Ottoman Macedonia which at that times was highly inhabited with Bulgarians who held that name of the time, and even today many Bulgarian have this archaic name.
A slim and beautiful girl, she was taken by a janissary (stolen kids from Bulgarian or other non-turkish nations who were grown and included in the Ottoman empire’s governance or army) who was a subashiya (tax collector who collected 10% of all the non-turks income) in her village with the idea to make her one of his wifes. After Kirana rejected him, he abducted her with a gang of janissaries.
He took her to Thessalonica, where his friends testified falsely that the girl had promised to become his wife and accept their faith. Kirana proved to be a brave and steadfast Christian – she neither wanted to marry the rapist nor convert to Islam. Because of this, she was chained and thrown into prison. The commandant of the fortress, Ali Bey, allowed the janissaries to enter to Kirana’s prison and torture her as they wished. As we read from her left Biography:
"One beat her with a tree, – another – with a knife, a third – with kicks, a fourth – with fists, until they left her near dead…
And at night the locksmith of the prison hung her by the arms and grabbed any tree found and beat her mercilessly…".
Thus, for a week, Kirana was severely tortured. On the seventh day (February 28, 1751) she died. And then a miracle happened –
"… a great light shone in the prison, came down from above from the roof like lightning, which surrounded the body of the martyr, spilled over the whole prison and illuminated it as if the whole sun had entered inside. It was then the fourth or fifth hour of the night (t . f. 10-11 o'clock at night)." In the morning, the Turks allowed the Christians to take the body of the martyr. They buried her outside the city, in the Christian cemetery there. Her clothes were divided among the faithful as sacred. Later, an unknown scribe compiled her life in Greek. The Church honors the memory of the holy martyr Kirana and commemorates her on February 28.
Biography source: Plamen Pavlov, Hristo Temelski Saints and spiritual leaders from Macedonia with minor modifications
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