Icon of the Martyrs Karpos, Papila, Agathodoros, Agathonika, and Chrysa
Iversk Icon of Mother of God (Transferred to Moscow in 1648). Holy Martyrs Karpos and Papila and with them Agathodoros and the Martyress Agathonika (+ 251). Monk Veniamin (Benjamin) of Pechersk, in Farther Caves (XIV). Martyr Florentius (I-II). Martyr Dioskoros (III). Martyr Benjamin the Deacon (+ 421-424). Martyr Antigones. Monk Nikita the Confessor (+ c. 838). Martyress Chrysa (Zlata or Golda) (+ 1795). Sainted Anthony, Archbishop of Chkondid (+ 1815, Gruzia). Martyr Trophimos. Sedmiezersk Icon of the Mother of God (XVII).
The Iversk Icon of the Mother of God, situated on Mount Athos, is glorified by many miracles. Accounts of the wonderworking image were spread throughout Russia by pilgrims. His Holiness Patriarch Nikon (then still Novospassk monastery archimandrite) turned to the archimandrite of the Athos Iveria monastery, Pachomios (who at the time was in Moscow seeking alms for the Athos monasteries), -- to supply a copy of the wonderworking Iversk Icon of the MostHoly Mother of God. The Athos monk Jamblichos wrote the copy of the Iversk image, and after a year the icon was in Moscow, accompanied by monks of Athos. On 13 October 1648 it was solemnly greeted by a multitude of the people. The great holiness of the Iversk Icon of the Russian Orthodox Church was glorified by the Lord with many miracles (an account about the icon is located also under 12 February).
The Holy Martyrs Karpos, Bishop of Phiatirea, Deacon Papila, Agathodoros and Agathonika the sister of Papila, suffered during a time of persecution against Christians under the emperor Decius in the III Century. The governor of the district where the saints lived became aware, that Karpos and Papila did not celebrate the pagan feasts. He gave orders to arrest the transgressors and first to try to persuade them in the veracity of the Roman pagan-religion. The saints answered, that it would be improper to worship false gods. The judge then ordered them to be bound and led through the city in iron chains, and then to be tied to horses and dragged to the nearby city of Sardis. Agathodoros and Agathonika voluntarily followed after Karpos and Papila. In Sardis they choked Agathonika to death with ox sinews, and beheaded Karpos, Papila and Agathodoros. Saint Papila during life was known for his gift of treating the sick; -- after his martyr's death he invariably gives healing to all who have recourse to him with faith.
The Monk Veniamin (Benjamin) of Pechersk lived during the XIV Century and before accepting monasticism was "an important merchant". Once at the time of Divine services Saint Veniamin felt deeply in his heart the words of the Saviour: how difficult it is for the rich to enter into the Kingdom of Heaven (Mt. 19: 23). Having given off his wealth to the needy, Saint Veniamin became a monk, "pleasing the Lord by fasting and prayers even unto death". He was buried in the Theodosiev Cave. His memory is also on 28 August and the 2nd Sunday of Great Lent.
The Holy Martyr Florentiuswas a native of the city of Soluneia (Thessalonika). Zealous for the glory of God, he fearlessly unmasked the darkness of idol-worship and led many to the light of true knowledge of God; he taught faith in Christ and fulfilled the will of God. For this the pagans subjected him to cruel tortures, and then burnt him (+ II).
The Holy Martyr Benjamin the Deacon converted many pagan Persians to Christianity, and for his zeal and evangelic preaching he suffered in Persia during the V Century.
The Monk Nikita the Confessor was situated at the imperial court, during the reigns of the empress Irene and her son Constantine.
Renouncing all positions and honours, Nikita decided to take monastic vows. At the request of the emperor, he did not set off into the wilderness, but rather remained in a monastery in the capital. When the Iconoclast Theophilus occupied the imperial throne, the monk Nikita was banished from the monastery by the heretics for opposing the heresy. The monk wandered for a long time throughout the country.
He died at age 75 in about the year 838. During his life and after his death the monk worked many miracles.
The Holy GreatMartyress Zlata (Chrysa or Golda) of Moglensk was born and lived in the Bulgarian village of Slatino, Moglensk diocese (+ 1795). Bulgaria at this time was under the Turkish Yoke.
From her youth Zlata displayed an unusually strong character, a firm faith in Christ, and was both chaste and beautiful. The local Turks attempted repeatedly to seduce the maiden and force her to accept Islam. But neither by persuasion, nor by threats, nor by monstrous torturing continued in prison for many months, did they break the spirit of the glorious confessor of Christ.
The Sedmiezersk Icon of the Mother of God was brought on 13 October 1615 from Ustiug near Kazan by the Monk Evphymii, founder of the Sedmiezersk Mother of God monastery. He blessed the place of the future monastery with this icon. Feastdays of the Sedmiezersk Icon were established in memory of its transfer from Ustiug, in memory of the deliverance of Kazan from a plague epidemic in 1654 and 1655, and again from pestilence in 1771 (26 June and 28 July).
© 1997 by translator Fr. S. Janos.