After the victory of Fritigern, heading a Christian army and inflicting defeat on the pagan Athanaric, the Christian Faith began to spread increasingly among the Goths. The Arian bishop Ulfilas, the successor to Bishop Theophilus, created a Gothic alphabet and translated into the Gothic language many priestly books. Saint Nicetas worked intensely among his fellow Goths at spreading Christianity. By his personal example and inspired words he brought many pagans to the Christian Faith.
However, after his defeat Athanaric again contrived to gather his own forces, return to his own country and regain his former power. Since he remained a pagan, he continued to hate Christians and persecute them.
Saint Nicetas endured many tortures, and died after being thrown into a fire. His body remained unharmed by the fire and was illumined by a miraculous light. By night, a friend of the martyr, a Christian named Marianus, retrieved the body of Saint Nicetas, and buried it in Cilicia. Afterwards, it was transferred to Constantinople. Part of the relics of the Great Martyr Nicetas were later transferred to the monastery of Vysokie Dechani in Serbia. Saint Nicetas received an unfading crown of glory from Christ in the year 372.
We pray to Saint Nicetas for the preservation of children from birth defects.
Troparion — Tone 3
You defeated error and triumphed in martyrdom, / Nicetas, namesake of victory; / For you conquered the ranks of the enemy / And ended your contest by fire. / Pray to Christ our God to grant us His great mercy.
Kontakion — Tone 2
You stood firm and defeated delusion / And have received your martyr’s crown, Nicetas, namesake of victory; / You are rejoicing with the angels, / Together with them you are praying unceasingly to Christ God for us all.