August 6, 2015

Holy New Martyr Avvakum (+ 1628)

St. Avvakum the Neomartyr (Feast Day - August 6)

The name of the neomartyr Avvakum (Habbakuk) is not recorded in any of the list of saints of the Church, as there is no description of his martyrdom. The only information we have of him comes from Codex Omega 89 of the Great Lavra Monastery on Mount Athos dated to the 17th century, which tells us that Avvakum was martyred in Thessaloniki on August 6th in 1628. It says:

"On the sixth day of August, in the year 7126 (1628), the Venerable Neomartyr Avvakum was martyred in the great city of Thessaloniki, to the glory and pride of Orthodox Christians."

That he is called "venerable" implies the probability that Avvakum was a monastic, probably an Athonite.

The name of the Venerable Martyr Avvakum was first included in the List of Saints by Sophronios Efstratiadis, who issued the catalogue of manuscripts from the Monastery of Great Lavra, where remembrance is made of the martyrdom of Avvakum.

Portions of the relics of Saint Avvakum are kept in the Monastery of Genesiou in Acarnania.