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Saints

Commemorated on January 20th

Euthymios the Great

Saints 20th Jan

St Euthymios, who was from Melitene in Armenia, was the son of pious parents named Paul and Dionysia. He was born about 377 AD. Since his mother had been barren, he was named Euthymios, which means "good cheer" or "joy", for this is what his parents experienced at his birth. He studied under Eutroios, the Bishop of Melitene, by whom he was ordained and entrusted with the care of the monasteries of Melitene.

Then, after he had come to Palestine about the year 406 AD, he became the leader of a multitude of monks. Through him, a great tribe of Arabs was turned to piety, when he healed the ailing son of their leader Aspebetos. Aspebetos was baptized with all his people; he took the Christian name of Peter, and was later consecrated Bishop for his tribe, being called "Bishop of the Tents".

St Euthymios also fought against the Nestorians, Eutychians, and Manichaeans. When Eudocia, the widow of St Theodosios the Younger, had made her dwelling in Palestine, and had fallen into the heresy of the Monophysites, which was championed in Palestine by a certain Theodosios. She sent envoys to St Symeon the Stylite in Syria, asking him his opinion of Eutyches and the Synod of Chalcedon, which had condemned him; St Symeon, praising the holiness and Orthodoxy of St Euthymios near whom she dwelt, sent her to him to be delivered from her error (the holy Empress Eudocia is commemorated August 13). He became the divine oracle of the Church, or rather, the vessel of divine utterance," as a certain historian writes, and he was the instructor and elder of St Sabbas the Sanctified. Having lived for 96 years, he reposed in 473 AD, on January 20.

Dismissal Hymn (Fourth Tone)

Be glad, O barren one that has not given birth; be of good cheer, you that has not travailed; for a man of desires has multiplied you children of the Spirit, having planted them in piety and reared them in continence to the perfection of the virtues. By his prayers, O Christ our God, make our life peaceful.

Kontakion (Plagal of the Fourth Tone)

As first-fruits of our nature

Creation found delight and joy in your august nativity and the good cheer of your numberless miracles on your divine memorial. Now bestow thereof richly on our souls and wash clean the stains of our every sin, Euthymios most-righteous, that we may chant: Alleluia.