IN THE NAME
OF THE FATHER AND THE SON AND THE HOLY SPIRIT,
On this day died John of the “Gospel of Gold.” This saint was from the city of Rome. His father was a rich man and his name was Trabius, and the name of his mother was Bedera. And Saint John was with a teacher learning the Holy Scriptures, and he asked his father to make him a Gospel of gold, and he made one as his son wished; and Saint John read in it always, and his father rejoiced when he read in it. And in those days there came a certain monk unto them, and he dwelt with them; now he was on his way to Jerusalem. And that monk held converse with Saint John, and he praised in his presence the garb of the monastic life, and at length John rejected this world, which became in his sight as nothing, and he longed for the life of the monk. And that monk went on to Jerusalem, and then came back, and he took up his abode in the house of Trabius, according to custom. And Saint John asked him to take him with him to his monastery, and the monk said, “I am afraid of thy father, and I cannot possibly take thee on my own responsibility.” Then Saint John asked him, and made him swear that he would take him, and he helped him to escape and took him with him; and they traveled on the sea (or, river), and embarked in a ship, and they went on until thy arrived at the monastery wherein the monk lived. And when the abbot of the monastery saw him, he marveled at his appearance and at his manner of speech, and John asked the abbot to array him in the garb of the monastic life. And the abbot said unto him, “O my son, know thou that the path of the ascetic life is very difficult.” And John bowed before him again, and asked the abbot to make him a monk. And John having urged him, the abbot shaved his head, and arrayed him in the holy garb of the monastic life. And John devoted himself to the ascetic life, and he fought many fights, and he fasted very long fasts, until his body dried up, and by reason of his excessive fasting, and prayer, and prostrations, and ceaseless vigils, his bones appeared from under his skin. And the abbot comforted him, and said unto him, “O my son, have pity on thyself, reduce thy toil and be kind to thyself, even as all the brethren [are to themselves].” And when he had been fighting a great fight for seven years, he saw in a vision as if one said unto him, “Depart to thy parents, so that thou mayest be blessed by them before thy death.” And when this had been said unto him, he saw the vision thrice, and he informed the abbot of what he had seen. And the abbot said unto him, “This vision is from God and it is meet for thee to depart.” And when he went out from the monastery he found a monk who was wearing ragged garments and he took them from him, and gave him his own monk’s garb. When he arrived at his father’s house, he took up his abode in his father’s courtyard, and he lived there for seven years, in a small hut, and ate the fragments from his father’s table, which the servants threw to him. And when his mother passed by his fetid smell, which was exceedingly nauseous, [reached her]. And when the time of his death drew nigh, the angel of God made it known unto him, saying, “After three days thou shalt depart from this world.” And Saint John sent and called his mother, and told her quickly that he was her son. And when she came to him to hear his request, he made her swear that she would bury him in that hut, and that she would not change the rags, which he was wearing. And after this he gave her the Gospel of gold, and said unto her, “Read this book continually and remember me.” And when his father came, she showed him the Gospel of gold, and he recognized it as the Gospel, which he had made for his son John. And the two of them, his father and his mother, rose up and came to Saint John, and asked him questions about that Gospel, and about their son. And he said unto them, “Swear ye to me that ye will not bury me in anything except the rags which I have worn as clothes in this hut” and then, forthwith. He said unto them, “I am your son John,” and they wept with a great weeping. And the princes of the city of Rome gathered together to them, and at the end of three days Saint John died. And his mother brought out the splendid apparel which she had prepared in years gone by for her own marriage, and she wrapped him up in them, and forgot her oath. Thereupon she fell sick. And his father remembered her oath, and he stripped off his son that rich apparel, and dressed him in his rags, and buried him in that little hut, and from his body great healing was obtained by everyone who was sick; and after this they built in his name a beautiful church, and laid his body in it, and many miracles took place there. Salutation to John of the Gospel of gold.Salutation to Sharda Hawaryat, who had the harmlessness of the dove, and the cunning of the serpent.
be to God Who is glorified in His Saints.