● Orthodox Remembrance Day: October 26
● Name means: Son of the (from Greek earth goddess) Demeter (Greek)
● Attributes: as soldier, sword, lance, arrows
● Patron: the soldier
● Died around 303 in Thessaloniki, Greece
The veneration of Demetrios, a highly esteemed saint in the Eastern Church, is believed to be a
confluence of traditions related to three distinct people. The first of these persons was a
Thessalonian martyr who was an officer in the Roman army during Emperor Maximianus’ reign.
In the year 303, during the persecution of Christians under Emperor Diocletian, he was taken
captive and imprisoned in the city’s thermal baths for reinforcing the faith of fellow Christians.
Ultimately, he was killed by being stabbed in the baths.
The second tradition is associated with a deacon who hailed from Sirmium, modern-day Sremska
Mitrovica in Serbia. The third tradition involves another deacon of Slavic origin from the Roman
province of Pannonia. The veneration of the Sirmium deacon probably reached Thessaloniki
following barbarian invasions in the fifth century. It was at this time that the area around the
city’s thermal baths lay dormant. Thus, it was only natural that a church dedicated to the deacon
from Sirmium be built in this area.
Demetrios, who is highly regarded in Greece and especially in Thessaloniki, is considered one of
the most revered saints of the Eastern Church. According to legend, he is said to have been the
brother of George.