September 28, 2015

Synaxarion of Saint Isaac the Syrian


On the twenty-eighth of this month [September], we commemorate our Venerable and God-bearing Father Isaac the Syrian, Bishop of the City of Nineveh.


Isaac the Venerable we proclaim with celebration,
Through him we are initiated into mysteries most excellent.
On the twenty-eighth we celebrate Isaac our imperishable boast.

This man of God came from Syria, and flourished in the eighth century after the incarnation by economy. He was struck with divine eros from a young age, and abandoned the world, taking up the light yoke of the Lord with the brethren, and in the monastery he was garbed with the monastic schema, exercising there all virtue, subjugation and self-control. He withdrew from there and settled in a desert area, in extreme quietude and seized with longing, renouncing all material things, and arriving at the heights of theoria, full of intangible brightness, becoming an angel in the flesh. Whence by divine calling, he was raised to the throne of the hierarchy, and elected as the bishop and shepherd of the holy Church of Nineveh. But disheartened and vexed at the loss of beautiful quietude there, and seeing the disdain for the commandments of the Gospel, he abandoned everything and returned with joyous feet to his beloved quietude. There he completed his life, and having arrived at the possibilities of human perfection, he departed rejoicing, at a ripe old age, to his longed for Christ, receiving the compensation for his toils.

This God-seeing man, who was richly given grace from God, has been appointed a teacher of monastics, and a practical guide in Christ of the venerable and blessed life and conduct, with discourses full of divine wisdom, and a collection of holy teachings, providing the sweetness of grace, leading the monastic order towards the perfection of virtue.

Through his intercessions, Christ God, have mercy on us and save us. Amen.

Apolytikion in Plagal of the First Tone
Shining with the splendor of the virtues, and the all-illumined luminary by your citizenship in Christ, which you beheld in the Spirit, God-bearing Isaac, you lead without error, on the path of salvation, teaching by the inspiration of God, those who praise you Father, as Christ's divine healer.

Kontakion in Plagal of the Fourth Tone
You are equal to the angels in citizenship, blessed one, you are a divine instrument of the Paraclete, Isaac, and the model of all those who live in monasticism; but as the dwelling-place of divine grace, entreat for grace and for heavenly light, for those who cry to you: Rejoice, divinely-wise Father.

An Angel in asceticism, in the flesh, you were shown to be, O all-blessed God-bearer Isaac, and through your angelic voice, you imparted to us words of salvation, and we who are led towards the life to come, cry out to you:

Rejoice, the star from Syria,
Rejoice, the lamp of hesychia.
Rejoice, you who overcame daily cares,
Rejoice, partaker of heavenly illumination.
Rejoice, God-inscribed pillar of holy Hesychasts,
Rejoice, sweet-flowing mouth of spiritual teachings.
Rejoice, for you were filled with God-given wisdom,
Rejoice, for you deliver from evil passions.
Rejoice, most-fervent healer of Christ,
Rejoice, our godly teacher.
Rejoice, O wise God-bearer Isaac,
Rejoice, our godly guide.
Rejoice, divinely-wise Father.

Doxastikon of the Aposticha in the Second Tone
The equal to the angels in asceticism, and divine-appearing in virtues, Isaac the godly-minded one, let us praise with hymns and odes, for rising as a phoenix, being watered through streams of tears, he brought forth fruits through the activity of the Spirit for the Church of Christ. And he intercedes ceaselessly to Christ, the Giver of Light, that we be granted mercy, and the remission of offenses.

Doxastikon of the Praises in the Plagal of the Fourth Tone
The fear of things to come ordered your life, and you abandoned corrupting notions from your soul, O Venerable One, through much hesychia and continence and nepsis, you inscribed upon your nous the ascetical way of life, and from the treasure of your heart, you bestow upon all saving teachings. And therefore, our Father Isaac, as you stand before the Three-sun light [of the Holy Trinity], deliver us from the darkness of passions.

Rejoice, the divine rule of quietude; rejoice, the wise teacher of those who live in monasticism; rejoice, you who provide to all graceful words of what is useful, Venerable Isaac.

Source: Translated by John Sanidopoulos.