February 10, 2016

Synaxarion of Saint Haralambos the Hieromartyr and Wonderworker

On the tenth of this month [February], we commemorate the Holy Hieromartyr Haralambos the Wonderworker.


Through the sword, Haralambos, you were deemed worthy
Of the brightness and joy of the Martyrs.
On the tenth, Haralambos, you were decapitated at the neck.

The Holy Hieromartyr Haralambos lived during the reign of Emperor Septimus Severus (194-211), when Lucian was the governor, and he was a Priest of the Christians of the city of Magnesia. Having taught the way of truth, and preached the faith of Christ, he was condemned by the above named tyrant, stripped of his priestly vestments, and the skin of his entire body was scraped. When the governor Lucian saw him bravely enduring these torments, he became enraged, and endeavored to rip the Saint apart with his own hands, but immediately his hands were severed, and were clung to the body of the Martyr. However the Saint prayed for him, and his health was restored. When the executioners Porphyrios and Baptos saw this miracle, they renounced the idols and believed in Christ. Three women who stood nearby and saw this, also came to believe. The governor captured all of them, and tormented them with various torments, then he mercilessly had them beheaded. For although the Saint made him well and healed him physically, the soul of the wretch remained unhealed.

The tormenting executioners of Saint Haralambos, Porphyrios and Baptos, having believed in Christ, were perfected by the sword.


Porphyrios and Baptos by a common sword,
Contested and were baptized with a common purple raiment.

Also the Three Holy Women who came to believe through Saint Haralambos, were perfected by the sword.


The three women are revealed to be manly,
Being masculine in number, the three go to the sword.*

* St. Nikodemos the Hagiorite explains this couplet as follows: "The Pythagorian, Platonist and Aristotelian philosophers, consider the number two to be feminine, because it is a pair. The number three they called masculine, because it is singular, and for yet more reasons. This couplet therefore likens these three women with the masculine number three, and just as they were three, they showed themselves to be masculine and manly in their bravery, not being afraid of the sword."

Apolytikion in the Fourth Tone
As an unshaken pillar of Christ's Church and an unwavering light of the world, thou didst illumine the world by thy martyrdom, O Haralambos, and dispel the moonless night of idols. Since thou hast boldness with Christ, pray to Him to save our souls.

Kontakion in the Fourth Tone
O trophy-bearing Athlete and Hieromartyr Haralambos, the Church has acquired thy relics as a precious treasure. Therefore she rejoices and glorifies the Creator.