John Naukliros

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The Holy New Martyr John Naukliros ("the Shipmaster/Skipper") (Greek: Ιωάννης ο Ναύκληρος ) was an Orthodox Christian during the seventeenth century who was martyred by Muslim Turks after he rejected their subjecting him to Islamic conversion rites while he was unconscious. His feast day is April 8.

The martyr John suffered a psychological sickness. One time, when he was found in an unconscious state, some Turks performed over him the rite of conversion to their religion. After he came to his senses and found he was wearing a turban, he angrily tore the symbol of Islam from his head. He bitterly bewailed the indignity that had occurred and continued to live as a Christian. The Turks however threw him into prison as being an apostate. Neither lectures, beatings, nor threats bent his will, as John repeatedly asserted: "I believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, and I refuse your faith". After suffering many torments they burned the martyr alive on the island of Kôs on April 8, 1669.

A service to the new martyr John Naukliros was composed by the Athonite Monk Gerasimos Mikragiannanitis (1905-1991), the late contemporary hymnographer who has been honoured by the Ecumenical Patriarchate with the title of Hymnographer of the Great Church of Christ.


English (translation)
Cruising the seas in the fire of life,
Naukliros arrived at calm ports.

Πλεύσας θάλασσαν εν πυρί την του βίου,
Nαύκληρ’ έφθασας εις γαληνούς λιμένας.