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Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Saint Thomas the Fool for Christ of Syria (+ 6th cent.)

St. Thomas the Fool for Christ (Feast Day - April 24)

Saint Thomas the Fool for Christ was a monk in one of the monasteries in Caesarea of Cappadocia. His obedience was to collect alms for the monastery. When the Thomas arrived in the city of Antioch, Syria he began the exploit of foolishness for the sake of Christ.

The steward of one of the churches, a certain Anastasios, became annoyed with the begging of Saint Thomas, and struck him on the cheek. Those present reproached Anastasios for his inappropriate manner of dealing with the fool, but Saint Thomas quieted them, saying, “From this moment I shall accept nothing further from Anastasios, nor will Anastasios be able to give me anything further.” These words proved prophetic. Anastasios died the very next day, and the Saint also died along the road to his monastery, at the Church of Saint Euthymius in the suburb of Daphne. They buried him at a place set aside for the burial of strangers.

After a certain while they buried a woman in the Saint’s grave. After four hours the ground on the grave of the stranger was thrown aside. They again covered the grave, but in the morning the ground on the grave again lay open. They reburied the woman in another place.

The same thing happened when they buried another woman there. Everyone realized that Saint Thomas did not wish to have a woman buried over him. The occurrence was reported to Patriarch Domnus of Antioch (546-560). At his command the relics of Saint Thomas were transferred to Antioch and placed in a cemetery where the relics of many holy martyrs rested. A small church was built over these relics, from which many healings occurred.

Through the prayers of Saint Thomas a deadly plague ceased at Antioch. From that time the inhabitants began to honor the memory of Saint Thomas every year.

HYMN OF PRAISE:
SAINT THOMAS THE DISCERNER

By St. Nikolai Velimirovich

Saint Thomas pretends to be deranged
For the sake of Christ, his Savior,
And God, he glorifies in his heart,
The only One, the Creator of the world,
God's name is in his heart,
Have mercy upon me O Good God!
By this, he nourishes his soul:
Have mercy upon me O Good God!
Holy Thomas is not concerned
What the world about him will say,
Let the world rant, let it threaten,
The true judgment, God will pronounce.
Whoever pleased the world
Before God was found to be false,
And Thomas smiled
At the world which pretends to be important.
O you shadow, above the water,
Why do you pretend to be so important?
All reality is in the Lord
When yourself, you consider as nothing,
With that, you will glorify Him.



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