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Day 12 of the Blessed Coptic Month of Kiahk, 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 Twenty-Second Day of the Blessed Month of Kiahk
Commemoration of the Archangel Gabriel
This day marks the commemoration of the honorable
Archangel Gabriel, the announcer, the consecration of his church in Caesaria
and the appearance of many miracles in it. He was the angel who was sent
to the Virgin Mary to announce her with the glorious birth of our Lord
Jesus Christ. He came to her and said, "Rejoice, highly favored one, the
Lord is with you." (Luke 1:28) He also announced the birth of John the
Baptist to Zacharias. (Luke 1: 11-22) As much as this announcement has
of great joy and gladness, we should also rejoice in his feast and pray
intently with supplications, asking for his intercession before God, to
preserve us from being ensnared by the devil and to grant us salvation
from our sins.
May The intercession of this honored angel be with us. Amen.
Departure of St.Anastasius, the Thirty-Sixth
Pope of Alexandria
On this day also of the
year 611 A.D., St. Anastasius, 36th Pope of Alexandria, departed. He was
one of the great noblemen of Alexandria. Before he became a Pope, he was
an overseer of the patriarchal court, then he became a priest for the church
of Alexandria. Shortly afterwards, he was chosen to be Pope. He devoted
much of his attention to the churches and he ordained bishops and priests
to fill the vacant posts. He built several churches and regained from the
"Melkites" (those who were appointed by the Roman Emperor) those that they
took over by force. Because he was loved by them for his knowledge, virtues
and righteousness, he brought many of them back to the Orthodox faith.
When the Emperor of Constantinople died, some wicked people spoke evil
of the Pope to his successor, that when the Pope was ordained he anathematized
(excommunicated) the Emperor and his belief. The Emperor was enraged and
sent to the Governor of Alexandria, commanding him to take the church of
"St. Cosmas and St. Damian" and all its properties by force and to give
it to the Roman Patriarch "Ologius". St. Anastasius was exceedingly sad,
but the Lord comforted him in another matter. Peter, the heretic, Bishop
of Antioch, died. A well informed saintly monk called Athanasius of the
Orthodox Faith was ordained in his place. As soon as Athanasius became
Patriarch, he renewed the union between the Church of Antioch and the Church
of Alexandria. He wrote an epistle, stating in it his Orthodox faith, and
sent it to St. Anastasius, who rejoiced and gathered the bishops and the
priests and read it to them. He wrote back to Abba Athanasius indicating
his desire to see him.
Abba Athanasius went to
Alexandria with his bishops and priests. When Abba Anastasius learned of
his arrival, as he was in "Scetis", he departed to Alexandria. He went
directly to the sea along with the bishops and priests to receive Abba
Athanasius and welcome him to Alexandria with great respect and honor.
They held a council in one of the monasteries that was at the sea coast,
which lasted one month, to discuss the doctrines of the church. Then, the
Antiochian Patriarch went back to his See in peace. St. Anastasius continued
to teach his flock in person and through his books. Because of his great
knowledge, he was able to write a book every year. He remained on his throne
for 12 years, 6 months and 10 days. During this period, he wrote twelve
books and gave them the Coptic alphabet as titles. His first book was Alpha
(&), his second was Beta (B) and so on, then he departed in peace.
May His prayers be with us and glory be to our God forever. Amen.
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