Thursday, September 28, 2017

Synaxarion of Saint Auxentios the Wonderworker of Cyprus

St. Auxentios of Cyprus (Feast Day - September 28)

Verses

Auxentios with the highest praise,
I praise, who increased the God-given talent.
On the twenty-eighth Auxentios was taken up to heaven.

Our holy father Auxentios was by race a German,* as the story concerning him shows. But of what parents, and what religion, and in what age, I cannot say precisely. What I know concerning him, this I will begin to narrate. From his earliest youth he gave himself to forays and wars and won great praise, showing himself to his enemies most terrible, and to the soldiers with him gentle, kind and most beloved. But as they tell of him, through some God-given impulse he renounced the world and its delights, and reckoning all glory as a dream, he hastened to break away from them. Hence, as some say, he opened his thoughts to those about him (for he had three hundred soldiers under his command) and found them all amenable, and even thirsting after that for which he himself thirsted: wherefore he was not heedless, but starting with this purpose he came to a certain sea shore, and there found a ship, and on this he embarked with the soldiers mentioned above, and reached the famous Cyprus, by God's guidance as I suppose, and arriving there they left the ship, and all the soldiers, one here, one there, were scattered abroad, and where each chose his dwelling-place there he followed in all strictness the life of a monk. But himself, our holy father Auxentios, reached Karpas,** a village so called which is a part of the said island, and finding a cave in a place called by the natives Loution, he dwelt therein. He gave himself up to the severest fasting and discipline, until, having cleansed his soul and body from lusts, he made it a temple of the Holy Spirit, and a receptacle of His gifts, and with unceasing prayer, and sleepless entreaty, speaking with God alone, he received from Him the gift of healing, and became a worker of not a few miracles. But the wonders wrought by him we have not set forth in this history, as it is for those for whom it must be brief, but we shall mention one only, which shall give credit to the rest.

After he had passed some time in the cave which we spoke of, he went to his rest in peace, and flew up to his much loved Lord, and received from Him rewards in due recompense of his labors, joined with the angelic hosts in their dances and rejoicings. After the lapse of many years his sacred relic was found in the said cave, exuding a fragrance, and full of a marvelous sweet smell, by certain faithful persons from both the inland village and that by the seashore (for men from the two villages were assembled together),*** whence no small strife arose among them, who of them should take the relic, for those of the seaside village said, "It is meet that we should take it, for it was found near our village." But those of the inland village replied, "Nay, but we will take it to our village, for there were most of us among those who found it." This being so they agreed to bring a cart and oxen, one from the one, and one from the other village, and to put the sacred and honorable body thereon, and then to let the oxen start without a guide, that they might go whither they should be led by instinct given from above, as the Saint might desire. So they did, and ceased their strife: they brought the cart and laid upon it the holy and sweet-smelling corpse, being yet whole and incorrupt. They brought the oxen also, and yoked them to the cart, and loosing them they walked without a guide, and the men followed them. They went until they reached the spot where now is to be seen the church built to the Saint, and there — O Christ our King, what wonder is this! — the oxen stood firm and still.**** And when the people saw this strange and wondrous thing, they lifted up their voices, and for a long time kept saying, "Lord have mercy on us." They took down the most honorable relic from the cart, and raised a fair and goodly shrine, to the glory of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, the one and only God, who had made His Saint a wonderworker. From this miracle then, as I said before, let credence be given to those worked daily by the Saint upon all who approach with faith his holy body, and celebrate year by year his honored and light-giving feast.

By the intercession of Thy Saint Auxentios, O Christ our God, free Thy people from every kind of danger and injury, give peace to Thy world, crown Thy churches with unity, and have mercy upon us all, as Thou art good and gracious. Amen.

Notes:

* It seems he was the leader of the 300 Alamanni who came from Germany to Cyprus, perhaps via the Holy Land where they are said to have settled for some time as monastics until the Muslim raids forced them to go to Cyprus. These were also said to have been Greeks living in Germany who volunteered during the Second Crusade to help liberate the Holy Land.

** Karpas, or Karpasia, is at the base of the Penatdactylos mountain in the Karpas peninsula between the villages of Komi Kebir and Eptakomi.

*** The two villages were Komi Kebir and Eptakomi.

**** This was in Komi Kebir. Komi Kebir (Büyükkonuk) and the Church of Saint Auxentios are inaccessible to its Greek Cypriot inhabitants since the Turkish invasion of 1974.


Apolytikion in the Third Tone
Komi of Karpasia rejoices having the coffin of your relics, all-renowned Father Auxentios. For you put to shame all those who did battle against you, and conquered the courage of the demons, and gladdened us the faithful who cry unto you: Entreat that we may given the great mercy.


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