Thursday, August 24, 2017

Holy Hieromartyr Eutyches, Disciple of Saint John the Theologian

St. Eutyches the Hieromartyr (Feast Day - August 24)

Verses

Although Eutyches did not give up his spirit during the contest,
He contested and received the reward of an athlete.
On the twenty-fourth Eutyches was covered over by a stone.

Saint Eutyches was a disciple of the Holy Apostle and Evangelist John the Theologian, and was full of the grace of the Holy Spirit.

In the Acts of the Apostle John, attributed to John's disciple Prochoros, we read the following about the close relationship between the Apostle John and Saint Eutyches:

"And having broken the bread, [John] gave it to us, praying for each of the brethren, that he might be worthy of the Eucharist of the Lord. He also therefore, having likewise tasted it, said: 'To me also let there be a portion with you, and peace, O beloved.' And having thus spoken, and confirmed the brethren, he said to Eutyches, also named Verus: 'Behold, I appoint you a minister of the Church of Christ, and I entrust to you the flock of Christ. Be mindful, therefore, of the commandments of the Lord; and if you should fall into trials or dangers, be not afraid, for you shall fall under many troubles, and you shall be shown to be an eminent witness of the Lord. Thus, then, Verus, attend to the flock as a servant of God, until the time appointed for your testimony.'

And when John had spoken this, and more than this, having entrusted to him the flock of Christ, he says to him: 'Take some brethren, with baskets and vessels, and follow me.' And Eutyches, without considering, did what he was bid. And the blessed John having gone forth from the house, went outside of the gates, having told the multitude to stand off from him. And having come to the tomb of one of our brethren, he told them to dig. And they dug. And he says: 'Let the trench be deeper.' And as they dug, he conversed with those who had come out of the house with him, building them up, and furnishing them thoroughly into the majesty of the Lord. And when the young men had finished the trench, as he had wished, while we knew nothing, he takes off the clothes he had on, and throws them, as if they were some bedding, into the depth of the trench; and, standing in only his drawers, stretched forth his hands, and prayed....


And gazing towards heaven, he glorified God; and having sealed himself altogether, he stood and said to us, 'Peace and grace be with you, brethren!' And sent the brethren away. And when they returned the next day they did not find him, but his sandals, and a fountain welling up. And after that they remembered what had been said to Peter by the Lord about him: 'For what does it concern you if I should wish him to remain until I come?' (John 21:22). And they glorified God for the miracle that had happened."

Saint Eutyches went on to bravely proclaim the gospel of Christ, and tore down many temples of the idols. For this he was beaten, bound and imprisoned. Many years he suffered in prison, and was fed with bread sent down from heaven. After this they sought to put him to death, so they cast him into a fire, and having been preserved unharmed, they cast him to be eaten by the wild beasts. Because one of the beasts spoke with a human voice to the Saint, the crowd that had gathered to witness his death were astonished.

Unharmed by all the torments and punishments, Eutyches returned to his homeland of Elaeousa Sebaste in Cilicia. An Angel of the Lord walked before him and strengthened him. Having lived there for a long time and labored for the Lord, he departed to the Lord in peace.


Apolytikion in the Fourth Tone
O disciple of the holy Apostles, thou wast a teacher of godliness, and didst openly proclaim the incarnation of the Word. Thou didst suffer as a martyr and confirm the word of faith by thy miracles. O Hieromartyr and Father Eutyches, pray to Christ our God for our souls.

Kontakion in the Third Tone
Thou wast a successor of the Apostles and an example to bishops, O Eutyches who didst die as a martyr. Thou didst shine like the sun and illuminate all, dispelling the darkness of godlessness. Wherefore we venerate thee as Christ's divine servant.

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