SS Andronicus and Athanasia  Fifth century
Butler's Lives of the Saints – October 9
Andronicus was a native of Alexandria who settled in Antioch to carry on the a
silversmith.   He was happily married to a young woman named |ln, they had two
children, John and Mary, and their trade flourished ; but ley had been married twelve
years both their children suddenly died on the same day, and Athanasia thereafter
spent much of her time weeping at their grave and praying in a neighbouring church.    
She was here one day when suddenly a stranger stood before her, who assured her
that John and Mary were happy in heaven. Then he disappeared, and Athanasia knew
that she had seen a vision of , the martyr in whose memory the church was
dedicated.    She went home to her husband, and suggested to him that the time had
come for them to renounce the world.   Andronicus agreed ; and as they left their
home, leaving the door standing open, St Athanasia called down the blessing of the
God of Abraham in upon herself and her husband, beseeching Him that, " as we leave
this door open for love of thee, so open to us the gates of thy kingdom ".   They made
their way into their native Egypt, where they sought out St Daniel, known as "of many
Miracles ", among the solitaries of Skete.   He sent St Andronicus to the monastery of
Tabenna, and St Athanasia to be an anchoress in the wilderness, dressed in the habit
of a man.   And so they lived for twelve years,
At the end of that time St Andronicus fell in with a beardless old monk, who said that
his name was Athanasius and that he was going to Jerusalem.   They travelled
together, made their religious exercises together, and returned once more to the place
where they had met.   Then they realized that they had a great regard and affection
for another and were unwilling to be parted ; so they both went to the monastery
called Eighteen, because it was so many miles from Alexandria, and a cell was found
there for Father Athanasius near to that of Andronicus.   When the time came for
Athanasius to die it was seen that he was weeping, and a monk asked him why he
wept when he was about to go to God.    " I am grieved for my father Andronicus ",
was the reply, " for he will miss me.   But when I am gone give him the writing that
you will find under my pillow."    After he was dead the writing was found, and when
he read it St Andronicus knew—what the other had known since they met on the way
to Jerusalem—that Athanasius was his wife Athanasia. Then the monks came, dressed
in white and carrying branches of palm and tamarisk , and bore the body of St
Athanasia to burial.    A monk stopped with St Andronicus until they had celebrated
the seventh day of Athanasia, and then tried to persuade the old man to come away
with him ;  and he would not.    So the monk departed alone, but he had not gone a
day's  journey when a messenger overtook him, saying that Father Andronicus was at
the point of death.
He hurried back, summoning the other monks, and St Andronicus died peacefully amid
the prayers of his brethren.   They buried him beside his wife.
The Copts, Ethiops and some Byzantine churches commemorate " our holy father
Andronicus and his wife Athanasia ", and they were entered in the Roman Martyrology
(with the place of death given as Jerusalem) by Cardinal Barer.
Lives of Saints