Although the Forerunner was beheaded in the Spring, around the time of the Passover, this feast was fixed for August, when a church was dedicated in its honor.
The accounts about the martyrdom of John the Baptist are provided by Ss. Matthew (Mt.14:1-12) and Mark (Mark 6:14-29). It was in the 32nd year after the Birth of Christ.
Troparion (Tone 2)
- The memory of the righteous is celebrated with hymns of praise,
- But the Lord¹s testimony is sufficient for you, O Forerunner.
- You were shown in truth to be the most honorable of the prophets,
- For you were deemed worthy to baptize in the streams of the Jordan Him whom they foretold.
- Therefore, having suffered for the truth with joy,
- You proclaimed to those in hell God who appeared in the flesh,
- Who takes away the sin of the world, and grants us great mercy.
- The glorious beheading of the Forerunner,
- Became an act of divine dispensation,
- For he preached to those in hell the coming of the Savior.
- Let Herodias lament, for she entreated lawless murder,
- Loving not the law of God, nor eternal life,
- But that which is false and temporal.
- from: http://orthodoxwiki.org/Beheading_of_St._John_the_Forerunner