Thursday, 17th April 2014 --- 9 Baramoudah 1730
Day 9 of the Blessed Coptic Month of Baramoudah, may God make it always received, year after year, with reassurance and tranquility, while our sins after forgiven by the tender mercies of our God my fathers and brothers.
The Ninth Day of the Blessed Month of Baramoudah
Departure of St.Zosimus (Zocima)
On this day in the middle
of the fifth century the ascetic father and the struggling monk Abba Zocima
the priest, departed. This Saint was born about the middle of the fourth
century from Christian and holy parents, who were from Palestine. When
he was five years old they handed him to a righteous old monk, who raised
him in a Christian manner and taught him the doctrine of the church, and
shortly after they ordained him a deacon. He became a righteous monk and
grew in virtues. He was continually praising God and he read the Scriptures
day and night and during work also. When he had completed thirty five years
in the monastery they ordained him a priest. Then he increased his ascetic
labors and struggle. After spending thirteen years in this struggle the
enemy sowed in his mind the evil thought that he was superior to all his
contemporaries in virtues and righteousness. But the Lord willed to turn
him away from this thought. He sent an angel to him and commanded him to
go to the monastery which was near the river Jordan. He rose up and went
to the monastery and he found therein righteous old men who were more perfect
in their contending than him. He realized that he was far from what he
thought in himself and he stayed there with them.
The custom of those monks
during the Holy Lent, was that after they had fasted the first weak they
partook the Holy Communion, then they left the monastery singing the twenty
six psalm, and at the end of it, they prayed together. Then the abbot blessed
them and they bed farewell to each other. Then they dispersed in the desert
of Jordan and each of them carried out his spiritual fight by himself.
St. Zosimus used to go out with them each year wondering in the desert
asking God to show him who was more perfect than him. As he was wondering about he
met Mary the Egyptian (Coptic). He learned from her about her life history
and the reason for her wondering in the desert. She asked him to visit
her after one year to give her the Holy Mysteries. He came to her in the
next year and gave her the Holy Communion. In the year after he revisited
her again but he found her had departed and he buried her and told the
monks of the monastery concerning her strife. After he had lived ninety
nine years he departed in peace.
May His prayers be with us all. Amen.
Commemoration of the Wonder that took
place with Pope Sinuthius (Shenouda I) the Fifty-Fifth Patriarch
On this day also a great
sign was made manifest through our holy father Pope Sinuthius (Shenouda
I) the fifty fifth Pope of Alexandria. This Pope went to the desert of
Scetis in order to fast the Holy Lent with the fathers the monks. On Palm
Sunday many Arabs came to the desert of Scetis to plunder the monasteries.
They stood on the rock east of the church of St. Macarius. Their swords
were drawn in their hands ready to kill and steal. The bishops and the
monks gathered together and decided to leave the desert before the Holy
Feast of Resurrection (Easter) and they took counsel with Pope Shenouda
who told them; "As for me I will not leave the desert until I complete
the Pascal week. On Maundy Thursday the situation became worse. The Pope
took his staff that had the sign of the cross on it and he wanted to go
out to meet the Arabs saying: "It is better for me to die with the people
of God" but they prevented him from going out, but instead, he strengthened
and comforted them. Then he went forth to meet the Arabs with his staff
in his hand. When they saw him, they retreated and fled away as if they
were pursued by an army of soldiers and from this day onwards they never
came back to do any harm.
May The prayers of this father be with us and glory be to God forever.
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Days of the Coptic month of Baramoudah