Saint Konon the Gardener
St Konon the Gardener lived during the reign of Emperor Decios in 251 AD. St Koron came from the town of Nazareth, and travelled to the city of Mandron, in the province of Pamphylia. There he stayed at a place called Karmela or Karmena cultivating a garden, which he used to water and plant with various vegetables, and he obtained what is necessary for life from the garden. He had such an upright and simple mind that, when he met those who wished to arrest him and saw that they greeted him, he also greeted in return from the bottom of his soul and heart.
When they told him that governor Publios called the Saint to go to him, the Saint answered with simplicity, “What does the governor need me, since I am a Christian? Let him call those who think the way he does and have the same religion with him.” So, the blessed man was tied and brought to the governor, who tried to move him to sacrifice to the idols”. But the Saint sighed from the bottom of his heart, cursed the tyrant and confirmed his faith in Christ with his confession, saying that it is not possible to be moved from it even though he might be tortured cruelly. So, for this reason they nailed his feet and made the Saint run in front of the governor’s coach, however, the Saint fainted in the street. Having fallen on his knees, he prayed and, thus, he commended his holy soul to the hands of God.
Dismissal Hymn (Fourth Tone)
Be quick to anticipate
Your Martyr, O Lord, in his courageous contest for You received the prize of the crowns of perfection and life from You, our immortal God. For since he possessed Your strength, he cast down the tyrants and wholly destroyed the demons’ powerless presumption. O Christ God, by his prayers, save our souls, since You are merciful.
Kontakion (Fourth Tone)
You Who was raised up
Through the angelic vision that you were granted, you were instructed in the Faith of Christ Jesus and received the power to work miracles. Therefore, you utterly quelled the demons’ presumption, and quenched deception’s flames in the floods of your contest. O righteous Martyr Konon, pray Christ God, the Friend of man to be gracious to us all.
Mark the Ascetic
Saint Mark the Ascetic lived in the fifth century and according to Nicephorus Callistus was a disciple of Saint John Chrysostom’s. Besides his blameless life of asceticism, Saint Mark was distinguished for his writings, some of which are preserved in Volume One of the Philokalia. His writings were held in such great esteem that in old times there was a saying, “Sell all that thou hast, and buy Mark.”
Righteous Father Mark of Athens
Of our righteous Fathers commemorated today, Saint Mark of Athens lived in the fourth century. Born in Athens of pagan parents, he believed in Christ, was baptized, and forsook the world, living the eremitical life in extreme privation in the deep wilderness beyond Egypt. His life is recounted by the monk Serapion, who found Mark in deep old age and about to depart this lfe, not having seen a man for ninety-five years. Serapion gave him burial after his blessed repose, even as Paphnutius had done for Saint Onuphrius (see June 12).
We Also Celebrate Today:
- John the Bulgarian
- Mark the Faster
- Parthenios the New Martyr who contested in Didymoteichos
- George the New-Martyr of Rapsani
- Eulogios the Martyr
- Conon the Isaurian
- Archelaos the Martyr of Egypt