July 9, 2015

Holy New Hieromartyr Methodios, Bishop of Lampes in Crete (+ 1793)

St. Methodios of Lampes (Feast Day - July 9)

Methodios Siligardos was born in the village of Vyzari, in the province of Amarion in Crete. He was at first a monk in the Asomaton Monastery where later he was elected abbot, and from there was chosen to be Bishop of the Diocese of Lampes.

As bishop, Methodios often represented his Orthodox Christian flock before the Muslim authorities, to whom he protested their arbitrary actions, which came to annoy the Turks.

In addition, the abbot of Kaloeidina Monastery named Parantos, denounced him before the authorities because Methodios was responsible for changing the status of the Kaloeidina Monastery from a patriarchal to a diocesan one. This meant that the monastery was now under the authority and responsibility of the local bishop rather than the Ecumenical Patriarch, which did not please the monks. Hence the denunciation.

As a result of these things, Bishop Methodios was taken into custody and tortured by three executioners: Kokalis and Brahim from the village of Gerakari and Zekir Aga from Nephs-Amari. During his many painful tortures, Bishop Methodios was urged to renounce Christianity and become a Muslim. He steadfastly refused, and therefore was put to death on July 9, 1793. He was buried in the Chapel of the Archangels which was situated near the place of his martyrdom.

Furthermore, the cypress tree where Saint Methodios was martyred has become associated with many miracles.

Asomaton Monastery