March 7

From the Prologue

Emilianus was born in Rome and committed many grave sins in his youth. When Emilianus came to his senses, he refrained from sinning and began to tremble just thinking about the judgment of God. Emilianus immediately entered a monastery and by fasting, vigils and obedience, he tamed and shriveled his body. He was an ideal example to his brethren in all virtuous acts of asceticism. Frequently at night, he would step out of the monastery and enter into a nearby cave to pray. Not knowing where Emilianus was going, the abbot of the monastery secretly followed him one night. The abbot saw Emilianus standing at prayer in reverence and in tears. All at once, a heavenly light, brighter than the sun, encompassed the entire mountain but especially the cave and Emilianus. A voice was heard from heaven saying, "Emilianus, your sins are forgiven you." Filled with fright, the abbot hurried back to the monastery. The next day, he revealed to the brethren what he had seen and heard the previous night. Great respect was shown to Emilianus by the brethren. He lived long and died to the Lord.(*)

(*) On this date St. Lawrence is commemorated in the great Greek Synaxarion. He was a benefactor of the Monastery Phaneromene on the island of Salamis. He lived in Megara as a married man with two sons. He was righteous and pious. The Holy Birth-Giver of God appeared to him in a dream and commanded him to go to Salamis and there to restore her church. He went there and, indeed, he discovered the destroyed ruins and built a new church. Here, he was tonsured a monk and died on March 7, 1770 A.D. Afterwards, many miracles occurred in this monastery over the relics of St. Lawrence.



Emilianus, a grave sinner,

And from sin, the soul aches,

Emilianus, disconsolate

For forgiveness, he prays to God:

O Most High, O Most wonderful,

From Whom the sun has light,

From Whom the angelic choir, its wakeful

Existence, joy and radiance receive!

For You only, O God, do I care,

Repentantly, I return to You,

Only to You do I offer thanks

That now, I truly comprehend life.

Tears, tears, tears, I shed,

Body and spirit now are fasting,

Vision of the world and hearing I conceal,

Forgive, O God, forgive, forgive!

For Your mercy I am a field,

Weed me and cultivate me,

Let my soul be alive,

And the flesh suffer and feel pain.

Of all men, I am the worst,

Behold, I judge myself,

Just do not judge me, O God,

I fear You, Only You!

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