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September 27, 2017

Synaxarion of Saint Ignatios, Abbot of Vatheos Ryakos (+ 975)

St. Ignatios of Vatheos Ryakos (Feast Day - September 27)


Ignatios received a celestial monastery,
Having beforehand led a monastery as a friend of God.

Saint Ignatios was from the second eparchy of Cappadocia, during the reigns of Nikephoros Phokas (963-969) and John Tzimiskes (969-976). At a young age he was dedicated to God like another Samuel, and went to the monastery known as Vatheos Ryakos, where he learned ascetic precision from Saint Basil, who was the abbot and founder of this monastery. Having arrived at the pinnacle of virtue, he was ordained in steps as a Reader, Subdeacon, Deacon and Presbyter. Because he was a good administrator,* he increased the monastery by both bringing in more revenue and making improvements. He also built various churches, such as one to the Commander Michael, another to the God-Seeing Elias, and another to the Holy Apostles near the monastery. He also built a wall for the nuns that were there, which was strong and beautiful.

The Saint boldly and courageously rebuked and shamed the rulers appointed by the tyrant known as Skleros. When Skleros rose up in rebellion, the Saint went to Constantinople. There he procured sacred treasures, the signum, namely the sign of our Lord Jesus Christ, and a silver-gilded Gospel, which he sent to the monastery. While he was in Constantinople, he came down with dysentery. For this reason he tried to arrive at his monastery an hour before he died, but upon arriving at Amorium, his present life came to an end. Therefore he was buried there in a revered house. When a year had passed, the fathers of the monastery wanted to transfer his relics to his monastery. So when they opened his grave, they found his relic whole and preserved, and full of a spiritual fragrance. Thus they brought it to the monastery, and treasured it in the narthex of the divine church.


* He was the fourth abbot of Vatheos Ryakos.