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THE ELEVENTH MONTH
Hamle 24
(July 31)

IN THE NAME OF THE FATHER AND THE SON AND THE HOLY SPIRIT, 
ONE GOD.  AMEN.

On this day Saint Abba Nob, of the city of Nekhisa, on the borders of the lower land in the north of Egypt, became a martyr.  The parents of this saint were holy and pure, and instructed folk; and having gotten this Saint Abba Nob, they reared him in the fear of God.  And when his days were twelve years he loved the Church, and he loved to listen to the Scriptures and to doctrine.  And when Diocletian brought tribulation upon the Christian folk, this Nob determined in his heart to shed his blood for the Name of our Lord Christ.  And at that time he went into a church and heard the priest teaching the believers and strengthened them in the True Faith, and he said unto them, “Keep yourselves from the worship of idols, and it shall be good for you to deliver yourselves over to death for the Name of Christ.”  And this saint returned to his house, sad and sorrowful, and he set before him everything which his father had left him, gold, and silver, and apparel, and he said, “Behold it is written, ‘The world shall pass away and the desire thereof’ (cf. Matthew v, 18).”  And straightway he rose up, and gave all his money to the poor and needy, and he departed to the city of Gamnudi, walking thither on his feet along the river bank, and he found the governor Lucius, and he confessed before him the Name of our Lord Jesus Christ.  And the angel of God appeared unto him there, and encouraged him and told him everything, which should happen to him; and the governor tortured him very severely.  And when the governor went to the south he took the saint with him, and he hung him up upon the mast of the ship.  And the governor sat down to eat and to drink, and immediately he did so the vessel which was in his hand stood still like a stone, and the eyes of the soldiers were blinded.  And the angel of God came down from heaven, and released the saint from his hanging position, and he wiped up the blood, which had run down from his nose and mouth, and then the wind blew and they came to the city of Athribis.  And the governor of Athribis knew what had happened to the governor of Gamnudi, and when the soldiers saw it they unfastened their belts, and cast them before the governor, and they confessed our Lord Christ and became martyrs.  And they tortured Saint Abba Nob very severely in Athribis.  They laid him on an iron bed, and lighted a fire beneath it, and Abba Nob prayed whilst he was on the iron bed, and God delivered him.  And after this the soldiers sawed him asunder with a saw, and they cut off his limbs, and the angel of God came down from heaven and delivered him, and raised him up whole and unharmed.  And then they took the saint to the city of Alexandria, and they tortured him there severely, and they heaped on him deadly serpents, but they neither approached him nor harmed him.  And one of the serpents went and coiled itself round the neck of the governor, who asked Abba Nob to have mercy upon him.  And the saint commanded the serpent to leave the governor, and it came down off his back, and the governor commanded the pagan priests and the magicians to burn it with fire.  And Julius, who was from the city of ‘Akfahas, came to Abba Nob, and asked him about his fight, and the name of his city, and he wrote down all [the story of] his fight.  And when the governor was tired of torturing him, he commanded the soldiers to cut off his head with the sword; and our Lord Christ appeared unto him, and comforted him and told him great healing should be derived from his body wherever it might be laid.  And He said that God would deliver from his tribulation everyone who should ask this from Him in the name of Abba Nob, and that God would forgive the sins of every one who celebrated his commemoration, or who satisfied the hungry with food, or who gave drink to him that was parched, or who gave incense or an offering [to the church], or who wrote a copy of the book of his fight.  And then the soldiers cut off his head, and he received the crown of martyrdom in the kingdom of the heavens.  And Julius took the body of Abba Nob, and sent it with his servants to the city of Nekhisa, and when the days of persecution were ended, they built a church in his name, and many signs and miracles took place in it.  And the body of the saint is in the town of Gamnudi to this day.  Salutation to Nob.

And on this day also Abba Takla ‘Adonaya, of Debre Libanos, and Tewolde Medhin, and their companions, became martyrs.

And on this day also fourteen thousand and eighty-four companions of Abba Nob became martyrs.

And on this day also died the holy father Abba Simon, the forty-second Archbishop of the city of Alexandria.  This saint came from the East, and his parents brought him to the monastery of the west of the city of Alexandria, wherein is the body of Saint Severus; and he became a monk there, and he learned to read and to write, and he learned by heart the Books of the Church.  And Abba Agathon made him a priest, and after this God chose him to become archbishop; and when he was appointed priest he served his spiritual father in the administration of the archiepiscopate.  And he lived by himself, fasting, and praying, and reading the Scriptures, and he ate only bread, and salt, and cumin, and uncooked herbs.  And he fought a perfect fight, and his devotion was sincere, and he made the soul of lust, which was in him to be subject to his rational and understanding soul.  And God wrought great signs and miracles by his hands, among which were the following:  Certain men of the priests of the city of Alexandria were envious of him, and they went to some magicians and gave them much money, and they prepared a deadly poison for them, and gave it to them.  And those evil priests took that poison, and mixed it with some drink, and poured it into a glass, and gave it to the archbishop and then they asked him to drink, and to give them his blessing.  And the archbishop drank that drink after he had received the Holy Mysteries, and no harm whatsoever came to him.  And after this they mixed that poison [with other things], and gave it to him a second and a third time, and it did him no harm, and the priests marveled at his escape.  Then they went to the market and found new figs there, and they bought some and worked up some of that poison in some of the figs; and the wicked priests arranged together to give him the poisoned [figs] before he received the Holy Mysteries and was fasting.  And the magicians said unto them, “If ye can make him swallow it, his belly will split open straightway.”  And those deniers [of Christ] went to him with deceit, and they asked the archbishop to eat of the figs, and they pressed him, and against his will they thrust the figs into his mouth; now he did not wish to swallow them before he received the Holy Mysteries.  And having swallowed them, his belly was moved that night, and he remained sick for four days.  And the angel of God appeared unto him in a vision by night, and made known to him the cause of his sickness, and he revealed unto him the names of those who had prepared the poison for him.  And in those days ‘Abd Al-aziz, Khalifah of Egypt, came to the city of Alexandria, and Abba Simon, the archbishop, went out to welcome him.  And the Khalifah saw the traces of his illness on the face of this father, and he asked the scribes, saying, “What hath happened to the archbishop that his appearance is thus?”  And they told him what had happened, and how they had prepared poison for him; and the Khalifah was wroth, and commanded [his soldiers] to burn the priests and the magicians in the fire.  And the archbishop bowed down to the ground and wept, and besought the Khalifah to have mercy on them, and the Khalifah said unto him, “Assuredly not, nay they shall burn them in the fire as they deserve.”  And the father said unto him, “If thou dost burn them, I shall have neither priests nor archiepiscopate”; and the Khalifah marveled at his gentleness and compassion.  And the Khalifah commanded, and the soldiers drove into exile the priests, and burned the magicians in the fire by Karos.  And the Khalifah loved this holy father greatly, and paid him much honor, and he commanded him to build churches and monasteries; and the archbishop built churches, and he built [one] by the city of Al-Wah to the south of Egypt, and very many other churches.  And God made manifest great miracles by his hands, among them being the following:  By his prayer he raised up to life a certain priest called Minas, after he was dead and had been made ready for burial; and the description of his raising up is thus.  This father Simon had appointed Minas to be the administrator of all the property of the Church, and he had to take car of the sacred moneys and endowments, and the sacred vestments were laid up in his charge.  And this father used to charge him always, saying, “Do not let any of the money and property of the Church be laid up in thy house.”  And it fell out that a sickness came upon him suddenly, and his tongue stuck fast in his throat, and his heart failed him.  When the archbishop heard of it he was exceedingly sorry, and he kept vigil all that night, and prayed to God on behalf of that priest, and asked Him to raise up that priest from the dead, because of the property of the Church.  And at midnight this father heard that the priest was nigh to die, and he sent his disciple to the wife of the priest, and commanded him to ask her about the property of the Church; and when his disciple drew near to the house of the priest he heard the outcries of the people thereof, who were weeping for the priest.  And he went in and found that he was dead, and that they were dressing him in the vestments of the priesthood and laying him on the bier; and there were many men round about him weeping for him.  And the disciple bowed his head in salutation to the priest, and straightway the dead man rose and sat up, and he embraced the disciple with his arms and hands, and he said unto him, “God is the God of the honorable father, Abba Simon.”  And the disciple said unto him, “Be strong, O priest, and fear not.”  And the priest said unto him, “Verily, I am strong through the prayer of my lord father, the archbishop, and God hath given me life again, and hath raised me up from the dead.”  And the disciple called the priests who were struck with dismay at the death of that priest, and he said unto them, “Be not dismayed, behold the priest Minas hath risen from the dead.”  And when the priests and the people came to him, the priest said unto them, “Know ye that I was dead, and they set me before the throne of my Lord Christ.  And I saw all the archbishops of the city of Alexandria, from Mark the apostle, to Abba Isaac, and they were standing before our Lord Christ.  And they rebuked me, saying, ‘Why hast thou hidden the property of the Church from our brother Simon the archbishop?’  And our Lord Christ commanded them, saying, ‘Cast him into the Outer Darkness.’  And when they dragged me along to cast me out, the archbishops bowed down before our Lord Christ, and asked Him, saying, ‘Have mercy upon us this time.  Our brother Simon, the archbishop, is at this moment standing up and praying for him, and for the property of the Church which was laid up with him.’  And God accepted their petition, and He commanded and [the angels] put back my soul into my body.  And God said unto me, ‘Behold, I have had compassion on thee for the sake of My chosen ones, and for the sake of their brother Simon, the archbishop.  And if thou dost not speak of thine own free will, and reveal unto him where the property of the Church is, thou shalt not return hither, and I will not accept their petition on thy behalf, according to what the Lord telleth Me, and I will not make thee to live after thy death.’”  And when all the people who were there heard these words, and saw this miracle, they marveled exceedingly, and they praised God the Most High; and straightway their sorrow and weeping were turned into joy.  And after that priest was restored to life he remained many days, and he used to relate this miracle to every man.  And this father Abba Simon continued to fight the fight and to devote himself to God, and to teach his flock, and to admonish them and to encourage them in the True Faith, and after this he died in peace.  Salutation to Simon the archbishop.

Glory be to God Who is glorified in His Saints.  Amen.