Euthymius the Great

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[[Image:StEuthymiusTheGreat.jpg|thumb|right|St. Euthymius the great: 17th c. painting on wood at [[Dionysiou Monastery (Athos)|Dionysiou Monastery]], [[Mount Athos|Mt. Athos]]]] Our great and [[venerable]] father '''Euthymius''' (sometimes spelled Euthymios or Efthymios) was a [[monasticism|monastic]] who lived in the latter fourth and the fifth centuries. The Church celebrates his [[feastday]] [[January 20]].
  
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==Life==
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Euthymius was born during the reign of king Gratian in 377 A.D. He came from Melitine in [[Church of Armenia|Armenia]] (now Makatya, Turkey), and was the son of pious and faithful parents called Paul and Dionysia.
  
[[Image:StEuthymiusTheGreat.jpg|thumb|right|St. Euthymius the great: 17th c. painting on wood at [[Dionysiou Monastery]], [[Mount Athos|Mt. Athos]]]] Our great and [[venerable]] father '''Euthymius''' (sometimes written Euthymios - [[feastday]] [[January 20]]) was born during the reign of king Gratian in 377 A.D. He came from Melitine in [[Church of Armenia|Armenia]] (now Makatya, Turkey), and was the son of pious and faithful parents, who were called Paul and Dionysia.
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Though Euthymius' mother was barren, his parents prayed fervently to God to grant them a child. Then they had a vision: they heard the voice of an [[angels|angel]] who told them to be cheerful because with the child's birth every [[heresy]] was going to be abolished and universal peace was going to be granted to the [[Church]] of God. For this reason this [[saint]] was called Euthymius (meaning ''good cheer'').  
  
As [[John the Forerunner]] had been born of a barren mother so this venerable Euthymius was born of a sterile woman and received the name Euthymius from [[God]] before even being born. His parents were praying to God to grant them a child. So, they heard the voice of an Angel who told them to be jolly and cheerful or rather that not only his parents but all should be jolly and cheerful, because with the child's birth every [[heresy]] was going to be abolished and universal peace was going to be granted to the [[Church]] of God. So, for this reason this [[saint]] was called Euthymius (bringer of jollity). Since the saint's father died, his mother offered him to Eutrojos, [[bishop]] of Melitine, by whom he was counted with the order of clerics. Because he was clever at studying the holy things of God and surpassed all the virtuous men in virtue and [[asceticism]], he was forced to be ordained [[priest]] and accept to look after the holy [[hermitage]]s and [[Monastery|monasteries]]. When he was twenty-nine years old, he went to [[Jerusalem]] and lived with St. Theoktistos in a cave on the mountain. While he was there, St. Euthymius liberated many men from the terrible chains of disease.
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When the saint's father died, his mother offered him to Eutrojos, [[bishop]] of Melitine, by whom he was counted with the order of [[clergy|clerics]]. Because he was intelligent in his studies and surpassed all men in virtue and [[asceticism]], he was forced to be [[ordination|ordained]] a [[priest]] and to look after the holy [[hermitage]]s and [[Monastery|monasteries]]. When he was twenty-nine years old, he went to [[Jerusalem]] and lived with St. [[Theoctistus|Theoktistos]] in a cave on the mountain. While he was there, St. Euthymius liberated many men from the terrible chains of disease.
  
They also say that this saint fed four hundred men, who had come to the monastery, with very few loaves of bread. Moreover, not only did he break his mother's sterility and was born, but also through [[prayer]] he proved even other barren and childless women to be fruitful and able to give birth to many children. He also opened the gates of heaven, as great [[Elijah]] had done, and brought rain with which he cured the earth which was only giving poor crop. The column of light, which was seen by the by-standers coming down from heaven while the saint was celebrating the [[Eucharist|bloodless sacrifice]], made the internal brightness of divine Euthymius' soul known as it shone over the saint till he ended the [[Liturgy]]. A sign and proof of the perfect purity and [[chastity]] of the saint was that he could spiritually see with the perceptive eye of his soul the mood and the condition of those souls which were approaching to receive the [[Holy Communion]], i.e., he could see who approached with a clean conscience and who with a spotted one.
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They also say that this saint fed four hundred men, who had come to the monastery, with very few loaves of bread. Moreover, not only did he break his mother's sterility through his birth, but also through [[prayer]] he made other childless women to be fruitful. He also opened the gates of Heaven, as great [[Elijah]] had done, bringing rain during a period of drought. Once a column of light, seen descending from Heaven by the by-standers while the [[saint]] was celebrating the [[Eucharist|bloodless sacrifice]], made the internal brightness of divine Euthymius' soul known. This light shone over the saint until he completed the [[Liturgy]]. A further sign of the purity and [[chastity]] of the saint was that he could spiritually see the mood and the condition of those souls when they approached to receive the [[Eucharist]].
  
When he was ninety-six years old he depared to the Lord in 473 AD, after establishing religious communities throughout Palestine. He had a graceful kind of face and his soul was simple and easy to reach. He was of white colour and according to his age and his body's stature he was respectable and [[Humility|humble]]. He had white hair and a long beard which reached as far down as his thighs.
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Another story about St. Euthymius' clairvoyance involves a [[monk]] who was about to die. This monk outwardly appeared to be a prudent and moderate saint, but in his heart he was lecherous and intemperate because he allowed his labors to be sweetened with shameful thoughts. So, when this monk at the point of death, blessed Euthymius saw an angel taking the soul of that miserable monk by force, using a three-pronged spear. Immediately the saint also heard a voice revealing all the hidden and shameful thoughts of that dying monk.
 
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They also say this about St. Euthymius: Once a [[monk]] was about to die. This monk outwardly appeared and was thought by many to be a prudent and abstemious saint but in his heart he was lecherous and imtemperate, because he used to accept and be sweetened with shameful thoughts. So, when this monk was about to die, as we have already said, blessed Euthymius saw an [[Angel]] breaking off and taking the soul of that miserable monk by force with a three-pronged spear which he held. Immediately the saint also heard a voice revealing all the hidden and shameful thoughts of that dying monk.
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When Euthymius was ninety-six years old (in A.D. 473), he departed to the Lord. He had established religious communities throughout Palestine.
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==Hymns==
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[[Troparion]] (Tone 4)
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:Rejoice, O barren wilderness!
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:And be glad, sterile desert, that has never known the travail of birth!
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:The man of desires has multiplied your sons;
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:He has planted them in faith and piety.
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:He has watered them with the Holy Spirit:
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:They grow in self-denial and perfect virtue.
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:Through His intercessions, O Christ God, preserve Your people in peace!
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[[Kontakion]] (Tone 8)
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:The wilderness rejoiced at your birth, holy father Euthymius.
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:In your memory, it brings a harvest of joy through your many miracles.
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:Pour these wonders on our souls as well and cleanse us from our sins,
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:That we may sing: Alleluia!
 
==Sources and further reading==
 
==Sources and further reading==
 
* ''Lives of the Saints for the Whole Year'' by St. [[Nicodemus of the Holy Mountain]] (18th century) (primary source)
 
* ''Lives of the Saints for the Whole Year'' by St. [[Nicodemus of the Holy Mountain]] (18th century) (primary source)
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* [http://secure.britannica.com/eb/article-9033304 Saint Euthymius The Great -- Encyclopædia Britannica (subscription - free trial available)]
 
* [http://secure.britannica.com/eb/article-9033304 Saint Euthymius The Great -- Encyclopædia Britannica (subscription - free trial available)]
 
* [http://saints.oca.org/IconDirectory/LG/january/0120AEuthymiosthegreat.jpg Icon of St. Euthymius (OCA.org)]
 
* [http://saints.oca.org/IconDirectory/LG/january/0120AEuthymiosthegreat.jpg Icon of St. Euthymius (OCA.org)]
 
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* [http://ocafs.oca.org/FeastSaintsViewer.asp?SID=4&ID=1&FSID=100238 Venerable Euthymius the Great] from [[OCA]]'s web site.
  
 
[[Category:Monastics]]
 
[[Category:Monastics]]
 
[[Category:Saints]]
 
[[Category:Saints]]
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[[Category:Byzantine Saints]]
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[[Category:5th-century saints]]
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[[ro:Eftimie cel Mare]]

Latest revision as of 10:49, October 22, 2012

St. Euthymius the great: 17th c. painting on wood at Dionysiou Monastery, Mt. Athos
Our great and venerable father Euthymius (sometimes spelled Euthymios or Efthymios) was a monastic who lived in the latter fourth and the fifth centuries. The Church celebrates his feastday January 20.

Life

Euthymius was born during the reign of king Gratian in 377 A.D. He came from Melitine in Armenia (now Makatya, Turkey), and was the son of pious and faithful parents called Paul and Dionysia.

Though Euthymius' mother was barren, his parents prayed fervently to God to grant them a child. Then they had a vision: they heard the voice of an angel who told them to be cheerful because with the child's birth every heresy was going to be abolished and universal peace was going to be granted to the Church of God. For this reason this saint was called Euthymius (meaning good cheer).

When the saint's father died, his mother offered him to Eutrojos, bishop of Melitine, by whom he was counted with the order of clerics. Because he was intelligent in his studies and surpassed all men in virtue and asceticism, he was forced to be ordained a priest and to look after the holy hermitages and monasteries. When he was twenty-nine years old, he went to Jerusalem and lived with St. Theoktistos in a cave on the mountain. While he was there, St. Euthymius liberated many men from the terrible chains of disease.

They also say that this saint fed four hundred men, who had come to the monastery, with very few loaves of bread. Moreover, not only did he break his mother's sterility through his birth, but also through prayer he made other childless women to be fruitful. He also opened the gates of Heaven, as great Elijah had done, bringing rain during a period of drought. Once a column of light, seen descending from Heaven by the by-standers while the saint was celebrating the bloodless sacrifice, made the internal brightness of divine Euthymius' soul known. This light shone over the saint until he completed the Liturgy. A further sign of the purity and chastity of the saint was that he could spiritually see the mood and the condition of those souls when they approached to receive the Eucharist.

Another story about St. Euthymius' clairvoyance involves a monk who was about to die. This monk outwardly appeared to be a prudent and moderate saint, but in his heart he was lecherous and intemperate because he allowed his labors to be sweetened with shameful thoughts. So, when this monk at the point of death, blessed Euthymius saw an angel taking the soul of that miserable monk by force, using a three-pronged spear. Immediately the saint also heard a voice revealing all the hidden and shameful thoughts of that dying monk.

When Euthymius was ninety-six years old (in A.D. 473), he departed to the Lord. He had established religious communities throughout Palestine.

Hymns

Troparion (Tone 4)

Rejoice, O barren wilderness!
And be glad, sterile desert, that has never known the travail of birth!
The man of desires has multiplied your sons;
He has planted them in faith and piety.
He has watered them with the Holy Spirit:
They grow in self-denial and perfect virtue.
Through His intercessions, O Christ God, preserve Your people in peace!

Kontakion (Tone 8)

The wilderness rejoiced at your birth, holy father Euthymius.
In your memory, it brings a harvest of joy through your many miracles.
Pour these wonders on our souls as well and cleanse us from our sins,
That we may sing: Alleluia!

Sources and further reading

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