Sunday, September 20, 2009

The Modern Job

Today on September 20 in the Holy Orthodox Chruch we commemorate our father among the saints, holy Great-martyr Eustathios, Theopiste his wife, and their two sons Agapios and Theopistos.

Eustathios, before his baptism, was an illustrious Roman general named Placidas in the second century. While hunting in the country one day, he was converted to the Faith of Christ through the apparition of an uncommonly majestic stag, between whose antlers he saw the Cross of Christ, and through which the Lord spoke to him with a human voice. Upon returning home, he learned that his wife Tatiana had also had a similar vision. They sought out the Christian Bishop and were baptized, Placidas receiving the name Eustathios, and Tatiana the name Theopiste; their two sons were baptized Agapios and Theopistos. The family was then subjected to such trials as Job endured. When the family refused to sacrifice to the idols—a public sacrifice from which no Roman general could be absent—the Emperor Hadrian had them put into a large bronze device in the shape of a bull, which was heated with fire until they died. When their holy bodies were removed, they were found to be without harm. The martyrs suffered in the year 126. By the intercessions of Thy Saints, O God, have mercy on us. Amen.

Thy Martyrs, O Lord, in their courageous contest for Thee, received as the prize the crowns of incorruption and life from Thee, our immortal God. For since they possessed Thy strength, they cast down the tyrants and wholly destroyed the demons’ strengthless presumption. O Christ God, by their prayers, save our souls, since Thou art merciful. --Troparion to the Saints, Tone 4

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