Saint of the Day – 22 April – St Theodore of Sykeon Priest, Monk, Abbot, Bishop (born at Sykeon, Galaia Died c613) – Patron against rain, of difficult marriages, for rain.
A native of Sykeon, in Galatia, Asia Minor, he was the son of a Byzantine imperial messenger and possibly of a prostitute. Entering a monastery in Jerusalem, he served there for many years until becoming abbot of a number of monastic institutions. He predicted the rise of Emperor Maurice and cured a royal prince of leprosy. About 590, he was appointed Bishop of Anastasiopol is, in Galatia.
St. Theodore spent his childhood at his mother’s inn that doubled as a brothel at Sykeon in Asia Minor. v When Theodore was about six years old a wonderful cook arrived at the inn who created so much business that his mother stopped her prostitution. The cook became Theodore’s spiritual director, teaching him to visit churches, to pray and fast, and to use the sacraments.
In his teens Theodore lived as a hermit in a cave near Sykeon. Then he shut himself up in a mountainous cave to practice extreme mortification. But Theodore also became well known for serving his neighbours with his gifts of healing, exorcism and prophecy.
When the church at Anastasiopolis chose Theodore as bishop, he reluctantly accepted the office. About his administration we know very little as his biography records only a long series of his miracles. After ten years he resigned because he was neglecting his prayer and his monks at Sykeon. Theodore retired to an oratory near Heliopolis. There he exercised a apostolate of charity and miracles until his death in 613.