THE PRIESTLY

August 4

From the Prologue

Cosmas was born in Aitolia in the village of Megadendron (Large Tree). As a young man he went to Mount Athos where he was tonsured a monk in the monastery Philotheus. However, driven by a constant desire to preach the Holy Gospel to the people, Cosmas went to Constantinople where he implored the blessing of Patriarch Seraphim II. He visited the regions of the Danube preaching the Good News but remained mostly in Albania where he suffered at the hands of Kurt Pasha whom the Jews incited against Cosmas. The Turks strangled Cosmas and his body was tossed into the river in the year 1779 A.D. His miracle-working relics repose in the village of Kalikontasi in the church of the Holy Theotokos not far from the town of Berat. Cosmas suffered for his Lord in the sixty-fifth year of his life.

HYMN OF PRAISE

THE SEVEN HOLY YOUTHS OF EPHESUS

When the last rays of the sun turned the west bloody red,

Seven Youths, to God prayed,

That, on the morrow again find themselves alive and healthy,

Before Emperor Decius, brought forth to torture

And lay down to sleep a long dream a deep dream,

Time walked by a wide step

One morning, from the east, the sun dawned

And the Seven from their deep sleep awakened.

And Jamblichus the youngest, to Ephesus hurried

To see, to hear, about everything he inquired

Does Decius, even them, seek to slaughter

And bread to buy for the Seven of them.

But behold, what kind of miracle: this is not the gate!

And even the town is totally different!

Everywhere, beautiful churches, domes, crosses,

Jamblichus asks himself: are those not dreams?

Nowhere a familiar face, nowhere kinsmen,

There are no persecutions; there are no martyrs.

Tell me brethren, the name of this town,

And tell me the name of the emperor, who now reigns?

Thus Jamblichus inquires. The people, at him, look,

And about him, everyone judges differently.

This town is Ephesus, now and before,

In Christ, reigns Emperor Theodosius

This Antipater [The Consul] heard and [Martin] the graying bishop,

The entire town was perplexed,

Everyone, to the cave hurries.

And saw the miracle, glorified God,

And the resurrected servants of Christ the Resurrected One.





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