21 ter 2015
The Ethiopian Synaxarium
IN THE NAME OF THE FATHER AND THE SON AND THE HOLY SPIRIT, ONE GOD. AMEN.
On this day took place the assumption of the body of our pure, and holy, and honorable Lady, the Virgin Mariyam, the God-bearer, who is indeed the Lady of all the women of this world. And our Lady prayed continually at the holy grave of our Lord Christ; the Holy Spirit made known to her that she was to depart from this fleeting world, and then told the virgins who were with her from Dabra Zayt, even as our Lord told them. Then our Lady Mary prayed, saying, “O my Lord Jesus Christ, hearken Thou unto me, and unto my prayer at this time, and unto my petition, and bring unto me thy disciple, John the evangelist, and likewise all Thy disciples, both those who are living and those whose souls Thou hast taken, for Thou art the God of the living and of the dead, and unto Thee belongeth glory for ever and ever, Amen.” and behold a cloud straightway took up John in the spirit from the city of Ephesus, and brought him to our Lady the holy Virgin Mariyam; and when he stood before her she glorified our Lord Jesus Christ. And John said unto her, “Rejoice, O thou who art full of grace, who didst bear our Lord Jesus Christ.” And the Holy Spirit spoke by his mouth, saying, “Thou shalt go forth from this world with great honor and glory, and after many great signs and wonders which our Lord and God shall make manifest by thee.” When our holy Lady the Virgin Mariyam heard these words, she rejoiced exceedingly, and she prayed, saying, “Glory unto Thee, O my Lord and God Jesus Christ, Who hast granted unto me what I asked. And now, honor me by Thy coming with Thine angels, so that they may take my soul and bear it up with Thee into the heavens.” And straightway the voice of the Holy Spirit from heaven was heard, saying, “At this time all the angels shall come from heaven, and the Apostles from all the ends of the earth, riding upon the clouds, and they shall come to Bethlehem, for the sake of the holy and blessed Virgin Mariyam, the mother of our Lord Jesus Christ.” And straightway all the Apostles came, for those who were dead rose up from their graves, and they stood before our holy Lady the Virgin Mariyam, and said unto her, “Rejoice, O thou who art full of grace, for our God was born of thee. He shall take thee out of this fleeting world with great glory even as He promised thee.” And straightway our Lady Mariyam sat down upon her bed, and said unto the Apostles, “Now do I know that my God and your God, Jesus Christ, will come to me, and that I shall see Him as I see you, and then I shall depart from this world. And now I desire you to tell me whence ye knew that I was to depart from this world, and so hastened your coming to me.” And Peter and all the Apostles said unto her, “The Holy Spirit commanded us to come unto thee, and straightway we mounted upon a cloud of light, and we arrived where thou art in the twinkling of an eye.” When our Lady Mariyam heard this from the Apostles, she lifted up her voice and said, “I praise and hymn Thy Holy Name, O my Lord Jesus Christ, my God, because Thou hast seen my suffering, and hast revealed unto me wonders, for Thou art Almighty; henceforth all generations shall hold me blessed.” And when the Virgin had finished her prayer and supplications, she said unto the Apostles, “Bring me incense and a censer, and summon our Lord Jesus,” and they did as she commanded them; and straightway our Lord Jesus Christ came. And thousands of thousands, and tens of thousands of tens of thousands of angels, surrounded Him, and archangels, and our Lord Jesus Christ comforted her, and told her of the rest and joy which were prepared for her. At that moment many miracles took place; the blind received their sight, and the dumb spoke, and the lame stood up straight and
walked, and the lepers were cleansed, and from those who were possessed of devils the evil spirits went forth quickly. And all those who were suffering from sicknesses of divers kinds, as soon as ever they came to the place where was our holy Lady the Virgin Mariyam, were healed straightway of their sicknesses, no matter of whatever kinds they were. Then our holy Lady the Virgin Mariyam said unto her beloved Son, “O my Lord Jesus Christ, I am afraid of the awful and terrifying angels who are in the air of the Land of Fire.” And our Lord said unto her, “Which of them can have dominion over thee?” When the time for her to depart from her body drew nigh, the Apostles and the virgins who were there weeping asked her to bless them, and she laid her hands upon them, and blessed them. And straightway our Lord Christ took her pure soul in His Divine Hands, and He wrapped it up in a cloth of light, and took it up with Him to the habitation above. And her Son, our Lord, commanded the Apostles to bury her body in a fitting manner, and they carried it to Gethsemane. And before her soul departed, our Lady looked and saw a great light, which it is impossible for the tongue of man to describe. And our Lord Christ said unto her, “Henceforth thy body shall depart to the Garden of Delight, and thy soul shall dwell in the abode of joy, wherein the angels shall praise [God] before thee.” And our Lady said unto Him, “I beseech Thee, in the operation of Thy wisdom, to hearken unto my petition. Whosoever shall pray unto Thee in my name do Thou in Thy mercy receive his petition. Whosoever is in tribulation and shall pray to Thee in my name, deliver Thou him from all his tribulation, for Thou art Almighty in heaven and on earth. Bless everywhere those who shall celebrate the commemoration of my name, and accept the offerings of all those who shall offer gifts in my name.” And our Lord Jesus answered and said unto her, “Behold, I have done for thee all which thou didst ask of Me. Rejoice, for every gift and every honor I will give thee from my holy Father. And everyone who shall pray unto Me in thy name henceforward shall never perish, neither in this world nor in that which is to come, for I will be to him a kindly intercessor with My heavenly Father.” After our holy Lady the Virgin Mariyam was dead the Apostles prepared her for burial, and they carried her on a bier so that they might take her to Gethsemane, as our Lord commanded. When the Jews heard of this and they knew that it was our Lady Mariyam [on the bier], they went out to her, and one of them seized her bier with his hand in order to throw her off from it on the ground; and the angel of God smote him with a sword of fire, and cut off his hands, and they remained hanging on the bier. And then the Jew believed on our Lord Christ, and he entreated our Lady Mariyam with tears and repentance for what he had done, and he wept bitterly, saying, “Verily, O pure Virgin, thou art the mother of our Lord Jesus Christ, Thou God in truth, I beseech Thee to have compassion upon me.” And through the prayers of the holy Apostles his hands were restored to their former positions. When the Apostles had buried her they remained there three days; now her death took place on Sunday, the twenty-first day of the month of Ter. And our Lord Jesus sent angels of light, and they carried her body away from the grave, and laid it under the Tree of Life, which is in the Garden of Delight. Now Thomas the Apostle was not present at the time of her death, but as he was coming on the cloud, he found her body with the angels. And one of the angels said unto him, “Make haste and salute the body of the mother of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Virgin Mariyam”; and he made haste and saluted her. And when he came to the Apostles they told him how our Lady Mariyam was dead, and he said unto them, “I did not know it until I saw her body, even as ye made me to know when I doubted the Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. And when he came to the grave to see the body of our Lady Mariyam, and they opened the grave, they could not find her body; and they were amazed and marveled exceedingly. And straightway Thomas told them how he had saluted her holy
body as the angels were carrying her up [to heaven]. And the Holy Spirit said unto them, “God doth not wish her body to lie in the earth.” And God made a covenant with the Apostles that even as He had shown Himself, so He would show her to His servants a second time, and He bade them wait until the seventeenth day of the month Nahase (Aug.- Sept.); and He fulfilled the covenant. And all the days of her life were sixty years; twelve years she lived in the Temple, three and thirty years she lived with Joseph, and after the Resurrection of our Lord Christ she lived for fifteen years in the house of John the evangelist, even as our Lord commanded her when He said unto her, “Behold thy son,” and to John, “Behold thy mother.” Salutation to the going forth of thy soul from the body without fear of death. Salutation to the going forth of thy soul, and to thy death, which was like unto a marriage.
And on this day also died the righteous woman Hilaria, the daughter of the Emperor Zeno. Her father was of the True Faith, and he loved the Church. He begot two daughters, namely this saint, and another, but he had no son. This saint, from her earliest years, used to love to sit by herself, and she determined in her heart to adopt the ascetic life and to wear the garb of the angels. And she went forth from the palace, and changed her apparel, and put on a man’s attire, and departed to the land of Egypt, and thence to the desert of Scete. And she found there a certain righteous elder whose name was Abba Bamu, and she told him her mind, and informed him that she was a woman, and he hid her secret, and brought her into a cell, and he visited her frequently for twelve years. And she dwelt in her cell, and as no beard appeared upon her face, the holy elders thought that she was a eunuch, and they called her “Hilarion (sic) the eunuch.” And an unclean Satan took possession of her sister, whom she had left with her father, and her father gave much money to the physicians, but they were unable to cure her of her sickness. And his fellow- nobles advised her father to send her to the desert of Scete, to the holy elders, for the report of their holiness had reached the country of Rome. And her father sent her off with nobles, and officers, and slaves, and handmaidens, and he wrote a letter to the holy elders, saying, “O my holy fathers, I will tell you what hath happened to me. God gave me two daughters, and one of them hath fled and I know not whither she hath gone, and of this one, her sister, an unclean Satan hath taken possession. I have always thought that she would be a comforter to me. I beseech your holinesses to pray on her behalf so that God may heal her of her sickness.” And when the saints had read the emperor’s letter, they prayed that God would heal her of her sickness; and the holy elders continued to pray on her behalf for many days, but she was not healed of her sickness. Then they called “Hilaria the eunuch.” who was her sister, and said unto her, “Take this daughter of the emperor and pray over her.” And Saint Hilaria said unto them, “I am a sinner and I am not able to do this difficult thing,” but they urged her until she took her. And Hilaria carried her off to her cell, and prayed for her, and she was healed in a few days and that unclean Satan fled. Now Saint Hilaria knew that the maiden was her sister, but the maiden did not recognize Hilaria, and she embraced her, and kissed her. And Hilaria went outside [her cell] and wept, and then she brought the maiden to the holy elders, and said unto them, “Behold, through your prayers I have healed her sickness.” And the saints rejoiced, and they sent her to her father in peace; and when she arrived and stood up by him he rejoiced in her greatly; and all the people in the palace rejoiced, and gave thanks to Christ. And the emperor asked her, saying, “What manner of life didst thou lead with the holy elders of the desert of Scete?” And she told him about Saint Hilarion (sic), who healed her of her sickness, and she said unto him, “He loved me very much and kissed (?) me.” when the emperor heard this his mind was greatly disturbed, and he said unto her, “Is it seemly for a monk to kiss a woman?” And straightway he sent a letter to the holy elders in the desert of Scete, saying, “Send hither to me Saint Hilarion, who healed my daughter, so that I may be blessed by him.” And the saints called Hilaria and commanded her to go to the emperor, and she wept bitterly and prostrated herself at the feet of the desert monks, and said unto them, “I am unable to go there.” And they said unto her, “This righteous emperor is a lover of the Church, and it is not seemly for us to transgress his commandment, even as the Holy Scriptures command us”; and they urged her, and she departed to the emperor her father against her will. And when she arrived he saluted her, and all those who were with her. When the people had gone, and the emperor was left alone with Saint Hilaria, he asked her, saying, “I have been disturbed in my mind because I heard that thou didst kiss my daughter, and I wish thee to explain the matter to me”; now only the emperor and empress were there with Hilaria. And she said unto them,, “Bring me the Holy Gospel, and swear unto me that if I tell you ye will not prevent me from departing to the desert of Scete”; and they swore to her even as she asked. Then she spoke unto them, saying, “I am your daughter Hilaria.” And she told them how her going forth took place, and how she had changed her apparel, and put on a man’s attire, and she showed them the marks on her body. And straightway they cried out loudly, and all wept [bitterly], and there was a very great outcry in the palace, and [her parents] said unto her, “We will never let thee go.” And Hilaria said unto them, “Remember the oath which ye swear to me on the Holy Gospel”; and she passed the Great Fast of forty days with them, and [then] went to the desert of Scete. And from that day the Emperor Zeno, her father, commanded the [governors] to give to the holy men who dwelt in the desert of Scete the tax of the land of Egypt for one year, and after this they gave the monks what they needed according to the emperor’s command. And the monks rejoiced, and they became numerous, and they built nine hundred churches near the monastery of Abba Macarius, and seven hundred churches near the monastery of Abba John, and five hundred churches near the monastery of Abba Besoy (‘Ebsoy). And Saint Hilaria lived in the mountain of Scete for five years after she came from her father, and she died [in peace], and none knew that she was a woman until she died. Salutation to thy going into the desert of Scete, O Hilaria.
And on this day also died the holy father Saint Gregory, the brother of Basil, Bishop of Dasyat. Now behold we have mentioned the commemoration of his father and of his brother in the section for the seventh day of the month of Ter. This blessed man Gregory was appointed Bishop of the city of Dasyat, and he was a most honorable and learned man; and behold, we have written a little about his strife in the section for the fifth day of this month Ter. It is said of him that when he was consecrating the Offering, he used to see the Holy Spirit descending from heaven upon the altar, and then he saw one of the Cherubim embrace his head, and clasp him to his bosom; and then Gregory would come out of this sleep, and rest himself on the altar; and all the people used to think that this was merely the sleep of the body. When he had completed three and thirty years in his Episcopal office, Saint Basil his brother came to him to visit him, for he was sick of a grievous sickness which was caused by excessive fasting; and Gregory welcomed him and rejoiced in him. And when Saint Gregory welcomed him and rejoiced in him. And when Saint Gregory went up to the altar to consecrate the Offering, according to his wont, our holy Lady the Virgin Mariyam appeared unto him, and she said unto him, “This day thou shalt come with me.” After he had finished the Liturgy, he asked his brother Basil to admonish the people to keep fast hold upon the True Faith. And he became like one who was asleep, and when [they tried] to rouse him they found that he was dead. And Basil commanded them to make a coffin for him, and they did so, and he buried him with many prayers, and psalms and dirges. Salutation to Gregory.
And on this day also are commemorated Nicolaus the martyr, and Abba Victor the bishop.
And on this day also Paul the governor, and Silas the priest became martyrs in the days of Marcion, the Emperor of Rome, the Melchite heretic. When all the faithful were gathered together at Gethsemane, on the festival of the death of our Lady, Julian the infidel came and surrounded them, and killed them, leaving not one of them alive.
On this day also Bakhayla Maryam became a martyr in Dabra Matmak.
Salutation to Jeremiah, who prophesied and was rebuked, when Israel loved to worship gods of wood and stone. He destroyed wild beasts and fierce lions by the power of his prayer, and therefore his festival is celebrated in Egypt.
Salutation to Paul the governor, and to Silas the priest. Salutation to John, whom the Virgin Mariyam promised should depart from this world without seeing the terrors of death.
Salutation to Kawestos.
Glory be to God Who is glorified in His Saints. Amen.
Our Holy Mother Maryam
Egze’et-na Maryam: Our Holy Mother Maryam, Mother of God (ቅድስት ድንግል ማርያም)
Death of St Mary
The departure of Our Holy Mother