July 3, 2019

Synaxarion of our Holy Father Anatolios, Patriarch of Constantinople

St. Anatolios of Constantinople (Feast Day - July 3)


You entered the end of your life Anatolios,
Without entering the approaching sun.

This Saint was a Presbyter and apokrisiarios* of the Church of Alexandria. Later he was ordained Patriarch of Constantinople, during the reign of Theodosius the Younger the son of Arcadius, in the year 447. He was proposed to be Patriarch by the Monophysite Dioscorus the Patriarch of Alexandria. For he had hoped in vain to have him as one who agreed with him and was of one mind with him regarding his cacodoxy, but his hope failed. For the blessed Anatolios deposed the cacodox Dioscorus, and the name of the renowned and most-holy Flavian (Feb. 16), the Patriarch of Constantinople, whom Dioscorus killed during the Robber Synod of Ephesus, was numbered in the diptychs among the other renowned Patriarchs, because Saint Flavian was unexpectedly deposed at the Robber Synod of Ephesus. Moreover the honorable relic of Saint Flavian was translated and treasured in the Church of the Holy Apostles by the actions of Saint Anatolios. Not only this, but in an encyclical epistle he expounded the Orthodox faith, and sent it out to the Bishops of every city, urging them to anathematize the initiators and leaders of heresy, namely Nestorius, Eutyches, Dioscorus and all those who dogmatized that the incarnation of God the Word took place as an intermingling or eclipsing of the divine nature. Anatolios therefore, as a successor of Saint Flavian, and shepherd of the Church of Christ for eight years, departed to the Lord, leaving as his successor the most-holy Patriarch Gennadios.


* An apokrisiarios was a cleric who served as the representative (also described as legate, a less precise term) of a patriarch or other bishop to the Roman imperial court of Constantinople. The office existed since the 5th century, but was institutionalized by law only under Emperor Justinian I (r. 527–565). Several of the more important ecclesiastical sees maintained permanent apokrisiarii in the imperial capital. The title was also used for the representative of a metropolitan or archbishop at the court of his "territorial" patriarch in either Constantinople, Alexandria, Antioch, or Jerusalem and for secular officials carrying correspondence of the Roman emperor.

Apolytikion in the Third Tone
By thy works thou didst seal thy life with immortality, O Hierarch Anatolios, and didst enlighten the world with the rays of the rising sun; for thou didst preach Christ to be of two natures, which are free of intermingling but one in hypostasis, for the salvation of our souls.

Kontakion in Plagal of the Second Tone
Thou didst bear within thee the illumination of the rising sun, and wast a lamp of Orthodoxy, dispelling heretical darkness, Venerable Anatolios, leading us to the correct divine faith, we who with longing cry unto you: This illumination, you behold initiate of Christ.