Sonntag, 27. Juli 2014

Live of Greatmartyr and Healer Panteleimon (And Akathist to the Saint)

The Great Martyr and Healer Panteleimon was born in the city of Nicomedia into the family of the illustrious pagan Eustorgius, and he was named Pantoleon. His mother St Euboula (March 30) was a Christian. She wanted to raise her son in the Christian Faith, but she died when the future martyr was just a young child. His father sent Pantoleon to a pagan school, after which the young man studied medicine at Nicomedia under the renowned physician Euphrosynus. Pantoleon came to the attention of the emperor Maximian (284-305), who wished to appoint him as royal physician when he finished his schooling.
The hieromartyrs Hermolaus, Hermippus and Hermocrates, survivors of the massacre of 20,000 Christians in 303 (December 28), were living secretly in Nicomedia at that time. St Hermolaus saw Pantoleon time and again when he came to the house where they were hiding. Once, the priest invited the youth to the house and spoke about the Christian Faith. After this Pantoleon visited St Hermolaus every day.
One day the saint found a dead child on the street. He had been bitten by a great snake, which was still beside the child’s body. Pantoleon began to pray to the Lord Jesus Christ to revive the dead child and to destroy the venomous reptile. He firmly resolved that if his prayer were fulfilled, he would become a follower of Christ and receive Baptism. The child rose up alive, and the snake died before Pantoleon’s eyes. After this miracle, Pantoleon was baptized by St Hermolaus with the name Panteleimon (meaning “all-merciful”). Speaking with Eustorgius, St Panteleimon prepared him to accept Christianity. When the father saw how his son healed a blind man by invoking Jesus Christ, he then believed in Christ and was baptized by St Hermolaus together with the man whose sight was restored. After the death of his father, St Panteleimon dedicated his life to the suffering, the sick, the unfortunate and the needy. He treated all those who turned to him without charge, healing them in the name of Jesus Christ. He visited those held captive in prison. These were usually Christians, and he healed them of their wounds. In a short time, reports of the charitable physician spread throughout the city. Forsaking the other doctors, the inhabitants began to turn only to St Panteleimon. The envious doctors told the emperor that St Panteleimon was healing Christian prisoners. Maximian urged the saint to refute the charge by offering sacrifice to idols. St Panteleimon confessed himself a Christian, and suggested that a sick person, for whom the doctors held out no hope, should be brought before the emperor. Then the doctors could invoke their gods, and Panteleimon would pray to his God to heal the man. A man paralyzed for many years was brought in, and pagan priests who knew the art of medicine invoked their gods without success. Then, before the very eyes of the emperor, the saint healed the paralytic by calling on the name of Jesus Christ. The ferocious Maximian executed the healed man, and gave St Panteleimon over to fierce torture.
The Lord appeared to the saint and strengthened him before his sufferings. They suspended the Great Martyr Panteleimon from a tree and scraped him with iron hooks, burned him with fire and then stretched him on the rack, threw him into a cauldron of boiling tar, and cast him into the sea with a stone around his neck. Throughout these tortures the martyr remained unhurt, and denounced the emperor. At this time the priests Hermolaus, Hermippus and Hermocrates were brought before the court of the pagans. All three confessed their faith in the Savior and were beheaded (July 26).
By order of the emperor they brought the Great Martyr Panteleimon to the circus to be devoured by wild beasts. The animals, however, came up to him and licked his feet. The spectators began to shout, “Great is the God of the Christians!” The enraged Maximian ordered the soldiers to stab with the sword anyone who glorified Christ, and to cut off the head of the Great Martyr Panteleimon. They led the saint to the place of execution and tied him to an olive tree. While the martyr prayed, one of the soldiers struck him with a sword, but the sword became soft like wax and inflicted no wound. The saint completed his prayer, and a Voice was heard from Heaven, calling the passion-bearer by his new name and summoning him to the heavenly Kingdom. Hearing the Voice, the soldiers fell down on their knees before the holy martyr and begged forgiveness. They refused to continue with the execution, but St Panteleimon told them to fulfill the emperor’s command, because otherwise they would have no share with him in the future life. The soldiers tearfully took their leave of the saint with a kiss.
When the saint was beheaded, the olive tree to which the saint was tied became covered with fruit. Many who were present at the execution believed in Christ. The saint’s body was thrown into a fire, but remained unharmed, and was buried by Christians . St Panteleimon’s servants Laurence, Bassos and Probus witnessed his execution and heard the Voice from Heaven. They recorded the life, the sufferings and death of the saint. Portions of the holy relics of the Great Martyr Panteleimon were distributed throughout all the Christian world. His venerable head is now located at the Russian monastery of St Panteleimon on Mt. Athos. The veneration of the holy martyr in the Russian Orthodox Church was already known in the twelfth century. Prince Izyaslav (in Baptism, Panteleimon), the son of St Mstislav the Great, had an image of St Panteleimon on his helmet. Through the intercession of the saint he remained alive during a battle in the year 1151. On the Feast of the Great Martyr Panteleimon, Russian forces won two naval victories over the Swedes (in 1714 near Hanhauze and in 1720 near Grenham). St Panteleimon is venerated in the Orthodox Church as a mighty saint, and the protector of soldiers. This aspect of his veneration is derived from his first name Pantoleon, which means “a lion in everything”. His second name, Panteleimon, given him at Baptism, which means “all-merciful”, is manifest in the veneration of the martyr as a healer. The connection between these two aspects of the saint is readily apparent in that soldiers, receiving wounds more frequently than others, are more in need of a physician-healer. Christians waging spiritual warfare also have recourse to this saint, asking him to heal their spiritual wounds.
The holy Great Martyr and Healer Panteleimon is invoked in the Mystery of Anointing the Sick, at the Blessing of Water, and in the Prayers for the Sick. The Feast of the holy Great Martyr and Healer Panteleimon is the patronal Feast of the Russian monastery on Athos. The forefeast starts eight days before the Feast. Each day after Vespers, Moliebens are sung with Canons in each of the eight tones. Thus, each day has its own particular Canon. The second day of the Feast is the monastery feastday. On this day a general Panikhida is served after Vespers in memory of the founders and benefactors of the monastery, and kollyva (kutia: wheat or rice boiled with honey) is blessed and distributed.

Akathist to the Great Martyr and Healer Panteleimon
Kontakion 1
Chosen passion-bearer of Christ and gracious healer, who freely grantest healing to the sick, we praise thee in songs as our protector.As thou hast boldness with the Lord, free us from all harm and sickness who cry with love to thee:
Rejoice, Great Martyr and Healer Panteleimon!
Ekos 1
We know thee, glorious Panteleimon, as an earthly angel and heavenly man.For adorned with angelic purity and martyrdom thou hast passed from earth to Heaven, where with the angels and all the saints standing before the throne of the Lord of Glory, thou prayest for all of us on earth who venerate thee with these invocations:
Rejoice, torch of piety!
Rejoice, most glorious lamp of the Church!
Rejoice, adornment of venerable martyrs!
Rejoice, support of the faithful in unflinching endurance!
Rejoice, outstanding boast of youth!
Rejoice, warrior of Christ of invincible courage!
Rejoice, thou who having grown up in the world wast not of the world!
Rejoice, angel in the flesh, surpassing mortals!
Rejoice, vessel of divine knowledge!
Rejoice, thou by whom faith has been exalted!
Rejoice, thou by whom delusion has been dethroned!
Rejoice, Great Martyr and Healer Panteleimon!
Kontakion 2
Seeing thee to be a chosen vessel, the Lord loved the beauty of thy soul; for, despising all earthly glory and pleasure, thou didst long to adorn thyself with the crown of martyrdom, wounded with divine love and singing inspiringly:Alleluia!
Ekos 2
Possessing divinely inspired knowledge, O valiant warrior Panteleimon, thou didst astound the EmperorMaximian by the courage of thy soul and by the words with which thou didst fearlessly preach Christ.Wherefore, praising thy boldness we say to thee:
Rejoice, thou who didst despise Maximian’s threats!
Rejoice, thou who didst not yield to the advice of the godless!
Rejoice, propagator of true adoration!
Rejoice, uprooter of demon worship!
Rejoice, accuser of the fury of torturers!
Rejoice, overthrower of the delusion of idols!
Rejoice, thou who didst disperse the assembly of the godless!
Rejoice, thou who didst exchange corruptible for heavenly joy!
Rejoice, converser with immaterial angels!
Rejoice, fellow-chorister of longsuffering saints!
Rejoice, thou by whom Satan was put to shame!
Rejoice, thou by whom Christ is glorified!
Rejoice, Great Martyr and Healer Panteleimon!
Kontakion 3
By the power of the Most High given to thee and by thy strong patience thou didst render powerless the torturer’s insolence, O valiant victor, undaunted by fire, wild beasts, and the wheel.When beheaded with the sword, thou didst receive the crown of martyrdom, wounded with divine love and singing inspiringly:  Alleluia!
Ekos 3
The monastery which hath thy precious head as a great treasure, O divinely wise martyr, is filled with joy over it, and praising with love the Grace of healing given thee by God, thankfully crieth to thee:
Rejoice, all-radiant lamp of Nicomedia!
Rejoice, unsleeping guardian of the monastery that honoreth thee!
Rejoice, thou through whom godlessness grew cold!
Rejoice, thou through whom the knowledge of God hath increased!
Rejoice, bright glory of passion-bearers!
Rejoice, joyous report of the Orthodox!
Rejoice, gracious source of healings!
Rejoice, container of great gifts!
Rejoice, fragrant myrrh that doth sweeten souls!
Rejoice, for thou dost help those who call upon thee!
Rejoice, thou who didst give sight to the blind!
Rejoice, thou who didst cause the lame to walk!
Rejoice, Great Martyr and Healer Panteleimon!
Kontakion 4
Possessed by a storm of polytheistic thoughts, the impious Emperor was confused on learning from the doctors who were jealous of thee that thou healest all kinds of incurable illnesses by the name of Christ.And we, glorifying with gladness our wonderful God in thee, cry to Him:Alleluia!
Ekos 4
When the people of Nicomedia heard of thy great compassion for the suffering and of thy free healing of all illnesses, all rushed to thee with faith in the healing Grace in thee, and receiving swift healing of all their diseases they glorified God and magnified thee, their most gracious healer, crying to thee:
Rejoice, thou who art anointed with the myrrh of Grace!
Rejoice, sanctified temple of God!
Rejoice, great glory of the pious!
Rejoice, firm wall of the oppressed!
Rejoice, thou who surpassest the wise in knowledge!
Rejoice, thou who enlightenest the thoughts of the faithful!
Rejoice, recipient of divine gifts and source of many of the Lord’s mercies to us!
Rejoice, speedy helper of the suffering!
Rejoice, harbor of the storm-tossed!
Rejoice, instructor for those astray!
Rejoice, thou who dost heal the sick freely!
Rejoice, thou who dost impart healing abundantly!
Rejoice, Great Martyr and Healer Panteleimon!
Kontakion 5
The Lord worked a glorious miracle through thee when, through His servant Hermolaus, He called thee into His marvelous light.For after thy prayer to Christ a child who had died from snakebite at once revived and stood up healed.Then recognizing the Lifegiver as the true God of all, with firm faith thou didst cry to Him:Alleluia! 
Ekos 5
The blind man whom thou didst touch with prayer in the name of Christ recovered his sight O glorious martyr.Then, renouncing thy father’s polytheism, thou wast baptized by the priest Hermolaus and didst embrace thy mother’s religion with which thou didst also enlighten thy father.Therefore we cry aloud to thee as to a glorious servant of God and wonderful healer:
Rejoice, thou who hast great devotion to God!
Rejoice, thou who art ever aflame with the fire of divine love!
Rejoice, attentive listener to the teachings of the priest Hermolaus!
Rejoice, thou who didst follow the advice of thy mother Eubule!
Rejoice, thou who didst give away everything to obtain Christ!
Rejoice, thou who didst vanquish love for the world by love for God!
Rejoice, for instead of the pleasures of the world thou didst accept for Christ cruel sufferings!
Rejoice, for thou didst become a partaker of Christ’s Passion!
Rejoice, thou who didst overcome all the passions!
Rejoice, thou who through Grace wast adorned with dispassion!
Rejoice, thou who dost fill with joy those who hasten to thee!
Rejoice, thou who dost heal all freely by the Grace of Christ!
Rejoice, Great Martyr and Healer Panteleimon!
Kontakion 6
The blind man enlightened by thee in body and soul became a preacher of the truth for, like the blind man of the Gospel, he boldly preached Christ to all as the true light that enlighteneth every man.But for reproaching the impious Emperor and the pagan gods he was beheaded and rose to the unwaning light in Heaven to sing to God:Alleluia!
Ekos 6
Standing before the Emperor’s tribunal with a radiant face thou didst boldly declare in the hearing of all, thrice-blessed martyr:Mine all-healing power and glory is Christ, the true God, the Lord of all, Who raiseth the dead andhealeth all infirmities.For this confession we bless thee and say:
Rejoice, thundering mouth of the deity of Christ!
Rejoice, mellifluous tongue that declareth His plan of salvation!
Rejoice, orator of sublime theology!
Rejoice, wise sower of piety!
Rejoice, sweet-sounding flute of faith!
Rejoice, glorious preacher of Orthodoxy!
Rejoice, thou who wast shown to be marvelous before thy death!
Rejoice, seer of Christ’s glory!
Rejoice, listener to those who pray to thee!
Rejoice, giver of help to those who need it!
Rejoice, obtainer of blessings for those who honor thy memory!
Rejoice, Great Martyr and Healer Panteleimon! 
Kontakion 7
Myrrh was poured out on thy soul, O divinely wise healer, from the Comforter Spirit, wherefore after thy death thy venerable relics, by their fragrance banish the stench of the passions and give healing to those who with faith cry to God:Alleluia!
Ekos 7
When the worshippers of idols beheld, O Saint, the paralyzed man raised and walking through thy prayer many believed in Christ; but the demon’s priests, consumed with jealousy, incited the Emperor to anger.Therefore, to thee who wast mercilessly tortured and burnt for Christ, we cry with compunction
Rejoice, thou who didst despise earthly pleasures!
Rejoice, thou who wast above material comforts!
Rejoice, for thou didst regard as nothing all the beautiful things in this world!
Rejoice, for thou didst shake thyself free of fleeting glory!
Rejoice, thou who didst remain free from the nets of the devil!
Rejoice, thou who didst vanquish the wiles of the torturers!
Rejoice, thou who didst not spare thy life for Christ!
Rejoice, thou who wast shown to be an enemy of hostile flesh!
Rejoice, thou who didst oppress the spread of polytheism!
Rejoice, thou who by the power of God didst defeat the idols!
Rejoice, sharp arrow by which enemies are wounded!
Rejoice, mediator who defendest the faithful!
Rejoice, Great Martyr and Healer Panteleimon! 
Kontakion 8 
The Lord appeared to thee in a wonderful way, encouraging and upholding thee in the tortures for His name.For in the person of the priest Hermolaus He cooled the boiling lead into which thou was thrown, and in the sea He untied the great stone from thy neck and brought thee unharmed to land.But thou, having been brought again before the Emperor, didst sing triumphantly to Christ our God:Alleluia!
Ekos 8
While dwelling noetically wholly in Heaven, thou leavest not those below on earth but remainest with us through the relics of thy holy skull, O great passion-bearer of Christ, receiving from the Lord enlightenment and sanctification and giving it to those who cry to thee thus:
Rejoice, thou who art filled with divine wisdom!
Rejoice, discerner of God’s providence!
Rejoice, delight of minds made wise by God!
Rejoice, gladness of souls who love God!
Rejoice, bright pearl of Christ!
Rejoice, thou who wast sanctified in soul and body!
Rejoice, dweller in the courts of the firstborn in Heaven!
Rejoice, inhabitant of the ever-blessed bridal halls!
Rejoice, beholder of the light of the Trinity!
Rejoice, fervent mediator in thy prayers to God for us!
Rejoice, thou who grantest illumination to souls!
Rejoice, thou who sendest comfort to the afflicted!
Rejoice, Great Martyr and Healer Panteleimon!
Kontakion 9 
All nature marveled, O Panteleimon, at the radiance of Grace and wealth of virtues in thee: thine angelic purity, thy great courage in cruel sufferings, thy strong love for Christ and great compassion for people, for whom thou doest glorious things that they may sing:Alleluia!
Ekos 9
Eloquent orators cannot worthily praise thy struggles, O glorious victor, as by the invincible power of God, though young in years thou didst conquer the ancient, primordial enemy and didst put to shame the delusion of idols.But we, filled with wonder, cry to thee 
Rejoice, joyful sight of angels!
Rejoice, reverent wonder of men!
Rejoice, thou who didst shed thy blood for Christ, and in death didst shed milk!
Rejoice, thou who didst give up thy body to a martyr’s death for His sake!
Rejoice, model of confession!
Rejoice, valiant warrior of the King of kings!
Rejoice, thou who didst conquer the ruler of darkness!
Rejoice, thou who by thy victory didst gladden Heaven and earth!
Rejoice, blessed inhabitant of the world above!
Rejoice, wise pilgrim of the world below!
Rejoice, tree adorned with the fruits of the gifts of Grace!
Rejoice, thou who carriest palms of victory!
Rejoice, Great Martyr and Healer Panteleimon!
Kontakion 10
Filled with compassion, as a true imitator of the Lord, the Giver of mercy, O venerable martyr, thou wast renamed by Him Panteleimon (that is, all-merciful), for thou pourest mercy on all who resort to thee; pour it also abundantly on us who cry to God concerning thee:Alleluia!
Ekos 10

Finding thee a strong wall impregnable to all kinds of torture, the torturer tried to crush thy strength by the teeth of wild beast and the spikes of the torture-wheel, but all to no effect.For the power of Christ subdued the fierceness of the beasts and the frightful wheel, on which thy body was turned, immediately broke to pieces.So to thee, invincible passion-bearer, we cry:
Rejoice, precious chosen one of Christ!
Rejoice, unblemished fragrance of God!
Rejoice, firm diamond of the Church!
Rejoice, unshakable tower reaching to Heaven!
Rejoice, tamer of visible beasts!
Rejoice, crusher of invisible dragons!
Rejoice, thou who wast stained with thy blood shed for Christ, mixed with milk!
Rejoice, thou who hast received unfading crowns!
Rejoice, thou who causest joy to angels and men!
Rejoice, thou who hast been glorified by God in Heaven and on earth!
Rejoice, celestial one, who singest in choir with the martyrs!
Rejoice, thou who art satisfied with the sweet vision of Christ!
Rejoice, Great Martyr and Healer Panteleimon!
Kontakion 11
A funeral song we offer to thy sacred immolation for Christ, in which milk instead of blood flowed from thee, Great Martyr, and the olive tree under which thou wast beheaded was all covered with healing fruit.Wherefore we cry fervently to Christ Who wonderfully glorifieth those who glorify Him:Alleluia!
Ekos 11
A luminous ray wast thou, O divinely wise one, to those sitting in the darkness of polytheism, leading them to the Sun of righteousness, Christ God.Him do thou entreat that we who offer thee these glad praises may ever live in the light of His commandments:
Rejoice, bright star, shining in the noetical firmament!
Rejoice, ray of light shining for Christian people!
Rejoice, thou who wast mystically illumined by the Sun, Christ!
Rejoice, thou who in spirit roamest the earth!
Rejoice, beautiful tabernacle of the Most Holy Spirit!
Rejoice, honorable vessel that poureth out healing!
Rejoice, treasury of purity!
Rejoice, namesake of mercy!
Rejoice, heir of the Heavenly Kingdom!
Rejoice, partaker of eternal glory!
Rejoice, patron of those in distress on the sea of life!
Rejoice, unmercenary healer who helpest those who invoke thee with faith!
Rejoice, Great Martyr and Healer Panteleimon!
Kontakion 12
Thou didst receive an abundance of Grace, thrice-blessed one, according to the greatness of thy love for Christ God, Who also showed thee to be a source of healing, for thou curest free of charge the sicknesses of soul and body of those who come to thee with faith and cry to God:Alleluia!
Ekos 12
Chanting of thy long-suffering labors for Christ, O glorious passion-bearer, we praise thy great patience, we bless thy martyr’s death, and we honor thy holy memory, O our defender and healer, and in praise we cry to thee:
Rejoice, sweet-sounding trumpet of piety!
Rejoice, sword which cuts down impiety!
Rejoice, thou who wast scraped on a tree for Him Who stretched out His arms on the tree of the Cross!
Rejoice, for, being burnt for Him, thou didst extinguish the furnace of delusion!
Rejoice, thou who didst wound the enemies by thy wounds!
Rejoice, thou who didst dry the streams of idolatrous blood by thy blood!
Rejoice, thou who wast thrown into boiling lead for Christ!
Rejoice, thou who wast sunk in the sea for His name!
Rejoice, thou who didst remain unharmed therein by the providence of God!
Rejoice, thou who didst pass through tortures of fire and water into the peace of Heaven!
Rejoice, thou who didst pour unfailing streams of mercy on the faithful!
Rejoice, gracious and compassionate physician who grantest healing through Grace!
Rejoice, Great Martyr and Healer Panteleimon!

Kontakion 13
O, our long-suffering and wonderful Passion-bearer of Christ and Healer Panteleimon!Graciously accept from us this small offering, heal us of our many and various ailments, and through thy intercession protect us from enemies visible and invisible and pray to the Lord that we may be delivered from eternal torment, that we may continually sing in His Kingdom:Alleluia! (thrice), And again Ekos 1 and Kontakion 1

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