Saint Dorothy was born in Caesarea, Cappadocia, an important city in Asia Minor (now Turkey). As a young maiden, Dorothy, was imprisoned during the persecutions of Christians during the reign of the Roman Emperor Diocletian. Dorothy refused to make sacrifices to the Roman gods or worship their idols and was, therefore, sentenced to death.
According to legend, Dorothy suffered in mid-winter and was put to death on February 6, 311 A.D. On the road to her execution, a young Roman lawyer, Theophilius, jeered at her and taunted her for her piety. According to legend, he called out, “Send me some of the fruits and flowers from that garden you speak of, where you are going to your bridegroom.” She responded, “Thy request is granted.” As she knelt at the executioner’s block, she prayed for Theophilus’ wish to happen. When she died, an angel appeared before her with a basket of three apples and three roses. After she died, the basket was delivered to Theophilus by an angel child. Theophilus recognized that the fruit (apples) and flowers (roses) were not native to the arid steppes of Cappadocia. When he saw these gifts he was converted to Christianity and later suffered martyrdom. St. Dorothy, which means “Gift of God”, is the patron saint of brides, florists and gardeners.