IN THE NAME OF THE FATHER AND THE SON AND THE HOLY SPIRIT, ONE GOD. AMEN.
On this day died Saint Abba Ephraim, the Syrian. This saint was a man from the city of Kawakebet, and his father was a priest of idols, and hated the worship of our Lord Jesus Christ. And at that time Abba Ephraim departed to Saint Abba Jacob, Bishop of Nisibis, who admonished him, and taught him, and baptized him with Christian baptism; and he lived with him and fought a fight greater than that [usually] fought by men in his days; and he fasted frequently and prayed without ceasing. And the grace of the Holy Spirit descended upon him, and he disputed with the people, and overcame them in argument. And when the Council of the father Bishops, Three Hundred and Eighteen in number, assembled in the city of Nicea, this saint went with his teacher Abba Jacob to the Council of the Saints, and overcame Arius the infidel. That night Abba Ephraim saw a pillar of light standing upon the earth, and it reached up to heaven, and when he saw it he marveled. And a voice came to him from heaven, saying, “This pillar of light which thou seest is the blessed Basil, Bishop of the city of Caesarea”; and he longed to see him. And Abba Ephraim departed to the city of Caesarea, and went into the church, and stood in a corner of it. And he saw Saint Basil, as he went up to the throne to read the Holy Gospel, and he wore priestly vestments of gold, which were of great price, and he was in doubt about him; and God showed him a white dove on the head of this Saint Basil. And Saint Basil knew that Abba Ephraim was standing in the corner of the church, and he sent and called him by his name, and Ephraim went to him, and they saluted each other through an interpreter. And Abba Ephraim asked Abba Basil that they might talk together without an interpreter, and the grace of the Holy Spirit descended upon them, and each knew the language of the other. And then Basil made Abba Ephraim a deacon, and after a few days he was made a priest, and many virtues appeared in him; and he fought a great fight. And at that time there was a certain honorable woman of high rank who was ashamed to confess her sin openly to Saint Basil; and she wrote on paper a confession of all the sins which she had committed from her youth up to that day; and there remained one sin only which she did not set down in what she had written. And then she brought the paper to Saint Basil, and she asked him before the people, saying, “I am a sinful woman. And behold, I have written all my sins on this paper, and I ask thee to remit them so that they may be blotted out from this paper, it remaining sealed.” And he took the paper, and prayed for her, and the paper became blank in every place, and all her sins were blotted out with the exception of the one sin, which was a very grievous one; and when she saw it she wept, and entreated him to remit to her the one sin, which remained. And he said unto her, “Go thou to the desert, to Abba Ephraim, and he shall remit to thee this one remaining sin.” And straightway she went to Abba Ephraim, and told him what had befallen her, and he said unto her, “Get thee quickly to Abba Basil before his departure from this world, for he is the chief-priest, and he must remit to thee thy sin.” And the woman returned to Abba Basil, and she found that he had died whilst they were carrying him in his bed on the heads of the priests. And she wept and laid the paper on the body of Abba Basil, so that he might blot out for her the sin, which remained on the paper; and the saint blotted it out by his prayer. And Abba Ephraim performed many miracles. And in his days there appeared a certain wicked denier [of Christ] whose name was Walda Didan, and this father disputed with him, and overcame him; and this father composed very many Homilies, and it is found written in the books that the number of the works which he composed by the Holy Spirit was one thousand four hundred Homilies and Admonitions. And Abba Ephraim asked God, the Most High, saying, “O my Lord, take from me the waves of Thy grace.” And having finished his good fight, he departed to God, Whom he loved. Salutation to Ephraim.
And on this day also are commemorated Abba Kharayon of ‘Amsal, and Fremnatos, and five and forty martyrs, and the martyrdom of Cyriacus, (as it is written in the Synaxarium of Mesr), and Frumentius the monk and fighter, the pure man and worker of many miracles.
And on this day also Peter and Paul performed a miracle in the city of Rome. And it came to pass, after the departure of our holy Lady the two-fold Virgin Mary, the God-bearer, that [the cloud] took them up and set them down in the royal palace; and when the king saw them he was frightened and said unto them, “What are ye and what is your business?” And they said unto him, “We are the servants of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, Who destroyeth all kingdoms, and is able to deliver those who hear Him, and to punish those who hear Him not.” And the king said unto them, “How is it possible for me to know whether your words are true [or not]?” And then they told him about all the signs and wonders, which our Lord Jesus Christ had wrought. And the king said unto them, “I have a daughter whose right eye a bird plucked out, and if ye heal her by your prayers I will believe in your God.” And Peter and Paul said unto the king, “Bring thy daughter to us?” And straightway he brought her in haste. And the holy apostles lifted up their hands, and prayed much to God, and then they laid their hands upon her eyes, and healed her in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ. And when the people saw this they bowed down at the feet of the holy apostles and believed. And thence the holy apostles departed to the country of Philippi, even as our Lord Jesus Christ commanded them. And Satan took the form of the king of ‘Endon, and he came to Pragmos, followed by a few soldiers, and he said unto him, “Why dost thou keep silence concerning the two magicians who, if we do not destroy them without [mercy], will speedily corrupt the country with their magic?” And the heart of Pragmos was persuaded, and he sent to him one thousand two hundred horsemen to bring the holy apostles to him, and they surrounded the city, and the men of the city were frightened, and they told the holy apostles. And the holy apostles went out of the city and stood up before the people, and prayed to God to send them help. And straightway the horses of the soldiers turned and faced the holy apostles, and they cried out in a thin voice like that of one who weepeth, “Make straight your feet, and kneel down on your knees.” And one of the horses lifted up his voice, which was like that of a man, and said unto the soldiers, “O ye foolish soldiers of Pragmos, why do ye seek Peter and Paul, the soldiers of Christ, and make them out to be magicians? They have only come to destroy the soldiers, and all the work of the devil. Do ye not see them with their King Jesus Christ, riding upon white horses, and making supplication on your behalf, that ye may become soldiers of Christ, and that they may write your names in the Book of Life? As for us beasts we will worship your God”; and having thus spoken the horse held his peace. And a voice was heard which said, “O apostles, neglect ye not my new plants”; and when all the people lifted up their eyes they saw our Lord going up into heaven in great glory. And when the twelve hundred soldiers saw this, they believed on our Lord Jesus Christ, and the submitted themselves to the holy apostles. And the holy apostles commanded them to abandon their military service, and to give back their horses to their king, and their weapons of war, and to believe boldly on our Lord Jesus Christ. And the soldiers went to Pragmos their king, and stood up before him, and he said unto them, “Where are the two magicians whom I sent you to bring?” And they said unto him, “Why dost thou seek to do evil in return for the good which they did thee in bestowing light upon thy daughter?” And then they unloosed their breastplates and girdles, and threw them in his face, saying, “Take thy property. We will find a better king than thyself. We believe on the God of Peter and Paul.” When the king heard [these words] he was dismayed, and he became furiously angry, and he commanded his soldiers to cast them into prison until he could kill them. And then he prepared to set out himself, and he made ready his weapons of war, and he commanded another fourteen hundred soldiers who were with him to set out for Pilpos, and to destroy the city down to its very foundations. And Saint Peter knows of this in his spirit, and he said unto Saint Paul, “O my brother, rise up and let us go to King Pragmos before he cometh to destroy the city.” Then they prayed a prayer, and mounted upon a cloud, and it [carried them away] and set them down in the royal palace. And they stood up before Pragmos, and said unto him,” Do not destroy the city, and make us the pretext for doing so; behold, we are before thee”, and the king commanded his soldiers to return. And he said unto the holy apostles, “Are ye magicians who have bewitched the city?” And they said unto him, “Far be it from us [to do] this.” And the king said unto them, “Your sins have brought this upon you.” And he commanded his servants to make two iron helmets with iron pegs in them, and to fill them with poisons (or, drugs), and to heat them in the fire, and to put them on the heads of the holy apostles, and then to hang them up head downwards; and the soldiers did this to them. Then Saint Peter prayed, and said, “O Lord my God, make Thy glory to appear on Pragmos.” And straightway Pragmos and all his people were hung up head downwards in the air, and at that moment Pragmos cried out, saying, “O my Lord, deliver me from this torture. Cursed be the King of ‘Endon, for it is he who hath led me into error, and cursed be every man who speaketh against them.” And Saint Peter said unto him, “Thou shalt not come down from thy hanging until thou dost give the command to thy soldiers to release the soldiers who are in prison.” And Pragmos cried out to Loy, his daughter, and commanded her to release them, and she released them, for she was the only person who was left unhung. And Saint Peter said unto him, “And now, thou shalt not come down from thy hanging unless thou wilt write a statement with thine own hand, saying, ‘There is no other god except my Lord Jesus Christ, the King of all the world, and on all the earth there is no being so unclean as myself’; and thou shalt command it to be proclaimed in the city.” And the king cried out, and they brought to him paper and a pen, and he wrote theses words whilst he was hanging head downwards; and he sent the writing to the city, and the people read it there. And straightway the holy apostles took down Pragmos and his followers. And the king came and bowed down at the feet of the holy apostles, and said unto the, “Forgive me, O my lords, I believe on your God.” And all the people fell down at their feet saying the same thing, and the apostles baptized them all in the Name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit; and they also baptized the soldiers, and thus they were all united in the Faith of our Lord Jesus Christ. And the apostles built for them a church, and appointed priests and deacons from among their learned men, and they taught them the True Faith. And they remained with them, teaching them to understand every difficult matter, and they gave them all the Holy Scriptures whereby they might strengthen their hearts. And they said unto them, “Be ye strong in your faith which we have taught you until we return to you.” And after this they gave them the salutation of “Peace,” and departed to the city of Pilpesyus. Salutation to Peter and to Paul.
Glory be to God Who is glorified in His Saints. Amen.