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Patrick the Hieromartyr & Bishop of Prusa and His Fellow Martyrs Acacius, Menander, and Polyaenus

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May 19

Reading:

Saint Patrick was Bishop of Prusa, a city in Bithynia (the present-day Brusa or Bursa). Because of his Christian Faith, he was brought before Julius (or Julian) the Consul, who in his attempts to persuade Patrick to worship as he himself did, declared that thanks was owed to the gods for providing the hot springs welling up from the earth for the benefit of men. Saint Patrick answered that thanks for this was owed to our Lord Jesus Christ, and explained that when He, Who is God, created the earth, He made it with both fire and water, and the fire under the earth heats the water which wells up, producing hot springs; he then explained that there is another fire, which awaits the ungodly. Because of this, he was cast into the hot springs, but it was the soldiers who cast him in, and not he, who were harmed by the hot water. After this Saint Patrick was beheaded with the presbyters Acacius, Menander, and Polyaenus. Most likely, this was during the reign of Diocletian (284-305).

Apolytikion in the Fourth Tone

Thy Martyrs, O Lord, in their courageous contest for Thee received as the prize the crowns of incorruption and life from Thee, our immortal God. For since they possessed Thy strength, they cast down the tyrants and wholly destroyed the demons' strengthless presumption. O Christ God, by their prayers, save our souls, since Thou art merciful.

Kontakion in the Plagal of the Fourth Tone

Since the Church hath thy body as a sacred gem of Jesus Christ, she now rejoiceth thereat, O blest Patrick, and with joy she crieth unto thee: Through thy prayers, O wise Father, all the world is preserved in peace and tranquillity, and it is kept unharmed and unconquered by any heresy.