The 16th Day of the MONTH OF JULY
Commemoration of the Holy Hieromartyr Athenogenes
& His Ten Disciples
On “Lord, I have cried…”, these stichera, in Tone VIII: Spec. Mel.: “O all-glorious wonder…” —
Vested in the splendid raiment of the priesthood, the glorious Athenogenes showed it to be yet more pure when dyed in his blood. Entering into the holy temple therewith, appearing before Him Who seeth all things and ministering to Him with the immaterial ranks, he is illumined with divine communion. Him do we call blessed.
The all-wise Athenogenes hath through faith led to Christ a choir of athletes who suffered steadfastly and finished the course. And with them having vanquished the one of great craft, he hath been received into the choir of martyrs, deified by communion; and he prayeth ever in behalf of us who ever keep his sacred memory.
The ten divinely elect disciples suffered, suppressing the uprisings of the passions by feats of fasting, and they slew the serpent, having acquired Athenogenes as a sacred instructor through the power of God. By their supplications, O Compassionate One, save us who ever trust in Thee, the All-good One.
Glory…, Now & ever…: Theotokion, in the same tone & melody —
Save me, O all-pure Mistress, who ineffably gavest birth to Christ the Savior; for thee have I acquired as mine only intercessor and invincible rampart, my protection and joy, and the divine consolation of my soul. Wherefore, deliver me from the worm which sleepeth not and from everlasting fire, O Mother of Christ God.
“What is this sight which I behold with mine eyes, O Master? Dost Thou, Who sustainest all creation, die, lifted up upon the Tree, giving life unto all?” the Theotokos said, weeping, when she beheld the God-man who shone forth ineffably from her suspended upon the Cross.
Canon of the saints, the acrostic whereof is: “O Christ, I hymn the glory of Thine athletes”, the composition of Joseph, in Tone VIII —
Irmos: Let us chant unto the Lord, Who led His people through the Red Sea, for He alone hath gloriously been glorified.
Joining chorus now with the ranks of heaven, O right glorious hierarch and martyr, save those who hymn thee with faith.
Guided by the laws of the Master, O honored assembly of the martyrs of Christ, ye destroyed the counsels of the iniquitous.
Wholly consumed like an unblemished sacrifice, O blessed of God, because of thy faith thou didst offer thyself to God through the fire of torments.
Theotokion: O thou who knewest not wedlock, in manner past understanding and recounting thou gavest birth to the preëternal Word, Who took flesh of thy blood.
Irmos: O Word, Who established the heavens by Thy word, make steadfast our minds and hearts, that we may glorify Thee, the Savior of our souls.
The martyred hierarch Athenogenes, having destroyed the cruel wiles of the enemy by his indestructible love for God, hath been vouchsafed glory with his disciples.
With steadfast opposition the godly ones blunted the arrows and darts of the enemy, and with their splendid rays they illumine the thoughts of all.
Wielding a mighty lash, the mindless one pitilessly inflicteth stripes, unceasingly lacerating; but he was unable to shake their firm resolve, which passeth understanding.
Theotokion: Thou hast been shown to surpass the cherubim and the seraphim, O Theotokos; for thou alone received the infinite God within thy womb, O undefiled one. Wherefore, all of us, the faithful, magnify thee with hymns, O pure one.
Sessional hymn, in Tone IV: Spec. Mel.: “Go thou quickly before…” —
Having first cleansed thy soul with abstinence, and later by suffering, thou didst please God with thy perfect mind, as a hierarch and martyr, O God-bearer. And thou didst lead to the Master the assembly of thy disciples, with whom do thou earnestly pray for us, O glorious one.
Glory…, Now & ever…: Theotokion —
O pure, most immaculate one who knewest not wedlock, who alone gavest birth in time to the timeless Son and Word of God: with the holy and honored patriarchs, the martyrs, prophets and the venerable, entreat Him, that He grant us cleansing and great mercy.
O all-immaculate Virgin Mother of Christ God, a sword pierced thine all-holy soul when thou didst see thy Son and God crucified of His own will. Him do thou never cease to entreat, O blessed one, that He grant us forgiveness of transgressions.
Irmos: I have heard, O Lord, the mystery of Thy dispensation; I have understood Thy works, and have glorified Thy divinity.
Transported far above every mind by divine ascents, O divinely wise ones, ye were undaunted by the bitter wounds of your flesh.
As a God-pleasing emulator of Christ and a blameless hieromartyr, Athenogenes was vouchsafed divine grace.
O martyrs who spake of the incarnation of the Word, ye endured wounds and death, passing over to immortality.
Theotokion: O all-immaculate one, thou gavest flesh to the Transcendent One Who is equally omnipotent and enthroned with the Father and, in His loving-kindness, entered into communion with mortals.
Irmos: Waking at dawn, we cry to Thee: Save us, O Lord! For Thou art our God, and we know none other than Thee.
Having closed off the wisdom of thy flesh through dispassion, O right wondrous one, thou didst emulate the suffering of the Dispassionate One.
By his divine precepts the glorious Athenogenes led the choir of his disciples to the Master.
The Bestower of light hath made thy memory radiant, O martyr, fulfilling thy petitions for those who have recourse to thee with faith.
Theotokion: Knowing thee to be both Mother and Virgin, O all-holy one, together we honor and piously bless thee.
Irmos: Cleanse me, O Savior, for many are my transgressions; and lead me up from the abyss of evils, I pray, for to Thee have I cried, and Thou hast hearkened to me, O God of my salvation.
Athenogenes hath received the excellent title of martyr, and with him the choir of his disciples hath been crowned, having first fasted, overcoming the wiles of the demons.
Christ the Master maketh thine honored memory radiant, fulfilling thy supplications to Him, O blessed one; for, behold, a deer led its young to thee at the behest of God.
Thou wast shown to be a noetic garden of paradise, O right glorious one, having the tree of life in thy midst; and with the fragrance of divine flowers thou dost manifestly perfume all.
Theotokion: Thou didst bear the Giver of the law like a noetic ark; like a radiant lamp thou gavest birth to the Light; and like a watered root thou hast put forth the Grapes of life, O Theotokos.
Kontakion, in Tone IV: Spec. Mel.: “Having been lifted up…” —
Following the love of the Master, as an excellent pastor thou didst lay down thy life for the sheep of Christ, O hieromartyr Athenogenes; for this cause we praise thee, and with thee the ten disciples who suffered with thee, instructed by the fear of God and thy teaching. Wherefore, with His life-creating right hand the Master hath crowned you who pleased Him. Him do ye entreat in behalf of us all.
Irmos: The Chaldæan furnace, burning with fire, was bedewed by the Spirit through the presence of God; and the children chanted: Blessed art Thou, O God of our fathers!
Having quenched the flame with the outpourings of thy blood, with the fire of thy struggles thou didst utterly consume the tinder of evil, O blessed one, crying out: Blessed is the God of our fathers!
Let the martyrs be praised as warriors of Christ, for they destroyed the uprisings of the flesh by the pangs of asceticism, and false worship by the outpouring of their blood.
Like immovable pillars the venerable martyrs were not shaken by the command of the iniquitous that their heads be cut off, nor by the laceration of their flesh, nor yet by multifarious tortures.
Theotokion: Delivered from the first fall of our ancestors because of thee, O all-immaculate one, we cry out to thee, “Rejoice!”, and with faith we glorify Him Who, through thee, hath delivered us from corruption.
Irmos: Trampling down the fire and flame in the furnace, the divinely eloquent youths did chant: Bless the Lord, O ye works of the Lord!
Gazing at the outpourings of divine light, Athenogenes destroyed the deep darkness of the falsehood of idolatry, and became light.
Glorifying the Lord, the choir of angels and martyrs, hierarchs and the venerable, rejoiceth in the memory of the honored athletes.
Proceeding to thy martyrdom with thy ten disciples, O holy hierarch, thou wast numbered among the flocks of the martyrs. With them we bless thee with faith.
Theotokion: Thou gavest birth to the Word in manner past recounting, O Mary Theotokos. Pray for us who hymn thee with faith and call thee blessed, O all-pure one.
Irmos: Thy birthgiving, O Ever-virgin, which was revealed to the law-giver on the mountain in the fire and the bush, for the salvation of us, the faithful, do we magnify with unceasing hymnody.
Behold the radiant feastday of the martyrs, resplendent with grace, illumining the hearts of the faithful with divine splendors! Come ye, let us draw forth enlightenment therefrom!
Like pure offerings and unblemished lambs did ye bring yourselves to Him Who was slain for our sake, O martyrs, receiving crowns of victory from Him as the Judge of the contest.
Thy pangs let fall drops of sweetness, O athlete, and take away all the bitterness of the passions for those who have recourse to thy temple with faith and celebrate thy salvific memory.
Theotokion: O pure one, thou bearest on thine arm Him Who beareth all things, and feedest the Nourisher Who became like unto us. Him do thou entreat, that He grant to thy people deliverance from all evils.