March 31

From the Prologue

Jonah was born in the province of Kostrom. In his twelfth year he was tonsured a monk and as such lived for a long time in the Simonov Monastery in Moscow. At the time of Metropolitan Photius, Jonah became Bishop of Ryazn. When Photius died, Jonah was elected as metropolitan and sent to the patriarch in Constantinople for approval and consecration. At the same time, Isidorus, a Bulgarian by descent, outwitted Jonah and arrived before him in Constantinople and was consecrated as the Metropolitan of the Russians. Jonah returned to his cathedral in Ryazn. Isidorus, the malicious one, ended his incumbency of the Metropolitan See nefariously. Isidorus attended the Council of Florence [1439 A.D.] and then, after three years, returned to Moscow. Everyone attacked him as an apostate from Orthodoxy and banished him. It is unknown where he ended his life. Jonah, the good and wise shepherd, ascended the throne of the Metropolitan See. He was a great worker of miracles, "a discerner," and a spiritual director. When the Agarians surrounded Moscow, Jonah repelled them through his prayers. In his later years he wished that he could be afflicted by an illness so that he could suffer pain and that, through pain, completely purify himself before his departure to the other world. According to his wishes, God permitted a sore on his foot ,which was preceded by a vision to a certain priest, James. The saint died from these wounds and took up habitation among the heavenly citizens on March 31, 1461 A.D. Many miracles have occurred over his relics. A certain mute, John by name, was brought before the relics of the saint. John kissed the hand of Jonah and, as he related later, the hand grabbed him by the tongue and he felt a sharp pain. When the hand released his tongue, John returned to those people who brought him and began to talk as though he was never a mute.

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St Nicholas Russian Orthodox Church, McKinney, Texas