November 10, 2020

Holy Hieromartyr Milos the Bishop from Persia in the "Ecclesiastical History" of Sozoman

Saint Milos and his two disciples are commemorated together in the Orthodox Church on November 10th. In the Synaxarion of Constantinople, Sozomen (Eccl. Hist. 2:14) and in their Acts, there are both differences and similarities than what is recorded about them in the Paradise of the Fathers. Though his name is usually recorded as Milos, he is also known as Milesios or Milles. He was also a Bishop in Persia who sought to spread the Christian faith, and suffered for it. The martyrdom accounts, however, are very similar despite differences, confirming that they are not different people, but these are accounts with different yet similar traditions. Below is the passage about him from Sozomen (Eccl. Hist. 2:14):
About this period Milles suffered martyrdom. He originally served the Persians in a military capacity, but afterwards abandoned that vocation, in order to embrace the apostolic mode of life. It is related that he was ordained bishop over a Persian city, and he underwent a variety of sufferings, and endured wounds and drawings; and that, failing in his efforts to convert the inhabitants to Christianity, he uttered imprecations against the city, and departed. Not long after, some of the principal citizens offended the king, and an army with three hundred elephants was sent against them; the city was utterly demolished and its land was ploughed and sown. Milles, taking with him only his wallet, in which was the holy Book of the Gospels, repaired to Jerusalem in prayer; thence he proceeded to Egypt in order to see the monks. The extraordinary and admirable works which we have heard that he accomplished, are attested by the Syrians, who have written an account of his actions and life.