Friday, 20th January 2017 --- 12 Tubah 1733
Day 12 of the Blessed Coptic Month of Tubah, may God make it always received, year after year, with reassurance and tranquility, while our sins after forgiven by the tender mercies of our God my fathers and brothers.
The Twelfth Day of the Blessed Month of Tubah
Commemoration Feast of the Archangel
On this day, the church commemorates the honorable
Archangel Michael, the head of the heavenly host, the intercessor for the
human race, and the faithful steward.
May His intercession be for us. Amen.
Martyrdom of St.Theodore El-Mishreke
(Of the East)
On this day also of the year 306
A.D., the church celebrates the commemoration of the martyrdom of the courageous
prince, St. Theodore El-Mishreke (Of the East). He was born in the City
of Tyre in 270 A.D. In his youth, he enlisted in the Roman army and was
promoted to the rank of commander. His father's name was Sadrikhos, "Adrakos"
who was a high ranking official during the reign of Emperor Numerianus
(283-284 A.D.), and his mother was the sister of Basilides, the minister.
When Emperor Numerianus died in the war against the Persians, his son,
Justus, was fighting in the west. The two officials Sadrikhos and Basilides
continued to run the affairs of the Empire, until the infidel Diocletian
took charge of the Empire, and started to persecute the Christians. At
that time, St. Theodore was in charge of the army that was fighting against
the Persians. He saw a vision at night: a ladder was extended between earth
and heaven, and at the top of the ladder the Lord sat on a great throne, surrounded by hosts of angels
chanting. He also saw under the ladder a great beast which was the devil.
The Lord said to St.Theodore, "Your blood will be shed for My Name's sake."
The saint asked the Lord, "How about my friend Lawondius?" The Lord replied,
"Not only Lawondius, but Banikaros, the Persian, also."
During a truce, between
the Roman and Persian armies, St. Theodore met with Banikaros, the commander
of the Persian army. St. Theodore guided him to Christianity and he believed
in Christ. Emperor Diocletian ordered that Prince Theodore be brought to
him. The prince came back with his army and with him were Lawondius and
Banikaros. When St. Theodore knew that the Emperor was going to ask him
to worship idols, he told his soldiers, "Whoever among you wants to fight
for the Name of the Lord Christ, let him come and join me." They all shouted
in one accord, "We die with you and your God is our God also." When he
arrived in the city, he left his soldiers outside and went alone to the
Emperor who received him well. The Emperor inquired about the war and the
army and he asked St.Theodore to worship Apollo. The saint answered in
great courage and faith, "I do not know any god that I can worship except
my Master, Jesus Christ." Diocletian commanded his soldiers to nail the
Saint to a tree and to brutally torture him. But the Lord was strengthening
and comforting him. Finally, he delivered up his pure soul into the hand
of the Lord Whom he loved. He received the crown of eternal glory in the
kingdom of heaven. The Emperor sent the priests of Apollo to the soldiers
of the saint, to call upon them to worship the idols. They all shouted,
"We have no king except our Master, Jesus Christ, Lord of Lords, and King
of Kings." When the Emperor heard what they said, he had them all beheaded.
They received the crowns of martyrdom and eternal bliss.
May Their prayers be with us. Amen.
Martyrdom of St.Anatolius
On this day also, St.Anatolius
was martyred. He was born in Persia. When he grew up, he became a soldier
of the Roman Empire and was promoted to a commander in the army. He spent
fifteen years in the army until the reign of Diocletian. He longed to chose
the heavenly kingdom, preferring it over all the vain glory of this temporal
world. He came before the Emperor, took off his military attire and sword,
threw them before him and confessed his faith in the Lord Christ. The Emperor
was astonished at his boldness. When he knew that he was a Persian, the
Emperor treated him with kindness, then sent him to Romanos that he might
persuade him to change his counsel. Romanos failed to do that and he returned
him to the Emperor. The Emperor tortured him with all kinds of tortures,
sometimes by pressing his body, sometimes by beating him and casting him
to wild beasts, and other times by cutting his tongue. The Lord Jesus Christ
sent to him His Angel to comfort him in all his afflictions. He remained
under persecution for a long time and when the Emperor became weary of
torturing him, he ordered his head cut off. He received the crown of martyrdom
in the eternal kingdom.
May His prayers be with us and Glory be to our God forever. Amen.
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Days of the Coptic month of Tubah