January 29

From the Prologue

Lawrence voluntarily chose the life of a recluse following the examples of earlier recluses Isaac and Nicetas. However, he guarded against diabolical temptations which, in the beginning, befell the other two. With great restraint, prayer and godly-thoughts, Lawrence attained a high state of perfection. He learned from a terrified demon that of one-hundred eighteen monks in the Monastery of the Caves, thirty of them were given by God the authority over evil spirits. Lawrence presented himself to the Lord in the year 1194 A.D.



The bitter death of Christ dulled the stinger of death

And drove away for ever the irrational fear of death.

A flock of martyrs swarmed after Christ

In death - but, without fear, without complaints and without shrieks;

And many with rejoicing hurried to death

Because, before their deaths, they saw angels and heaven.

Saint Ignatius traveled to Rome;

Along the way, to the Living God, he prayed

As a son would pray to his parents,

That the teeth of the beasts grind him, grind him!

That for which he prayed to God, God granted him,

Behold, but the saint, having been ground, remained alive!

Alive and whole; until now, before the Table of Heaven

Bread made tender by torture for Christ -

Saint Ignatius, the courageous Theophorus,

Throughout the ages, he imparts courage to those being tortured.

There are two sufferings; there can only be two sufferings:

For justice or for sins, this cannot be hidden.

Pain for one's sins is pain without hope,

But pain for justice is joy without sorrow.

As a light through rain that decorates the rainbow

Thus, the joy, through tears and through gentle sorrow,

On the spiritual heaven, Paradise and God is pictured -

That strengthens the souls of the holy martyrs.

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