November 9, 2010

Saint Symeon the Metaphrastes (St. Nikolai Velimirovich)

St. Symeon the Metaphrastes (Feast Day - November 9)

                                                            By St. Nikolai Velimirovich

Symeon was a gifted Constantinopolitan. He had both a secular and spiritual education. He attained the rank of imperial logothete [chancellor] and was first among the nobles at the imperial court, yet he lived a pure and blameless life as a true ascetic. He distinguished himself by great military bravery and statesmanly wisdom. For these qualities, Emperor Leo the Wise greatly respected him and sent him to Crete to negotiate a peace with the Arabs who then occupied the island. Successfully completing his mission, he returned to Constantinople and soon thereafter withdrew from the world and worldly affairs. He wrote many lives of saints, compiling 122 new biographies and correcting 539 biographies. He entered into rest in about the year 960, and a fragrant and healing myrrh flowed from his relics.

Saint Symeon Metaphrastes

St. Symeon was called Metaphrastes -
He dedicated his God-given talent to the Church.
He loved the saints, the friends of God,
And wondrously described their struggles:
Struggles in spirit, struggles in the flesh,
Struggles in thought, and struggles in deeds.
He was a true friend to the friends of God,
Who are dearest to God of all the men in the world.
He loved those whom God loves,
And through them he deepened his love for God.
Symeon shone with love for God,
And wrote his Lives like a brilliant tapestry,
For new generations in the four corners of the world,
To nourish their souls with true spiritual integrity,
By having vivid examples of saintly nobility,
By which to follow in the footsteps of patristic teachings.
Wondrous is our God in His saints;
Wondrous is the Lord, the Creator of angels.