August 22 Martyr Agathonicus of Nicomedia and those with him

Read the Life of St. Agathonicus here

The Martyrs Agathonicus, Zoticus, Theoprepius, Acindynus, Severian, Zeno and others accepted death for Christ during the reign of the emperor Maximian (284-305).

The Martyr Agathonicus was descended from the illustrious lineage of the Hypasians, and he lived at Nicomedia.

Liturgical Hymns in Honor of St. Agathonicusfrom the Menaion

Translations copyright by Br. Isaac E. Lambertsen, drawn from the Menaion of the Orthodox Church, in 12 volumes (in English), published by the St. John of Kronstadt Press, 1180 Orthodox Way, Liberty TN 37095; www.sjkp.org.  Authorized only for private devotional purposes.  Further distribution, reproduction, or incorporation into other documents is prohibited without prior permission from the publisher.  All rights reserved.

O holy one, as thou art a good emulator of the good God, make my soul blessed, which hath become wicked through the passions; and grant me discourse, that I may glorify thy memory.

Thou wast known unto Him Who knoweth all things, O divinely inspired martyr, and didst preach His incarnation before the heathen, fearing not the death of the body.

By thy word thou didst raise up the fallen and didst show them piously to share in the resurrection and everlasting splendor, O martyr most rich.

The vain-minded one hoped to ensnare thee deceitfully with blandishments, but his vain idea was set at nought when thou, O martyr, didst set thyself firmly upon the rock of the true Faith.

Having navigated the abyss of the wounds and pangs of thy body by the helm of Christ, O martyr Agathonicus, thou didst set sail for the noetic havens, rejoicing.

"Let laceration and rending of the body come upon me this day, for I fear neither the sword, the grill, the fire, the wild beasts, nor death!" thou didst cry out, O athlete Agathonicus.

Thou didst enter the tribunal of martyrdom, O wise one, splendidly defending thyself with the sword of the divine Faith; and, wrestling with the enemy, thou didst mightily vanquish him and set him beneath thy feet, O martyr and athlete Agathonicus.

By the wisdom of thy words and the divine revelation of sacred acts thou didst affright the enemy, who had hoped to conquer the steadfastness of thy mind and lead thee into deception, O Agathonicus, martyr of Christ.

Thy mind aflame with the fire of divine love, O glorious one, thou wast not afraid of the fire of thine adversaries, but didst burn like an ember and consume the tinder of ungodliness, O sacred martyr Agathonicus.

As a lawful martyr, O glorious one, thou didst oppose the laws of the  tyrant with the saving law of Christ our God, the Bestower of the law Who hath dominion over all.

Agathonicus is now blessed as a splendid and all-glorious martyr, and he ever rejoiceth radiantly with the hosts of heaven.

Thou didst wish to die rather than live, O glorious one, that thou mayest forever acquire the everlasting life which is to come. Wherefore, thou didst bow thy head beneath the sword that severed thy neck.

With the weakness of thy flesh thou didst vanquish the myriad-numbered multitude of noetic moors, O wise one, and didst unite thyself to tens of thousands of sacred servants.

Manfully didst thou tread the path of martyrdom and didst restrict the paths of evil, O athlete; and thou hast attained the spacious habitations of heaven.

Made luminous like gold in the crucible of cruel sufferings, O Agathonicus, wise one of Christ, thou wast shown to be a model placed in the treasuries of God.

Thou didst share in the glory of heaven, hastening past all those on earth, having loved the Master of heaven and earth with all thy soul, O glorious one. Wherefore, we faithfully honor thy holy memory.

Following the sufferings of Christ Who hath poured forth dispassion upon all the faithful, thou didst endure oppression, tribulation, and an undeserved death, O martyr, when, rejoicing, thou wast beheaded with the sword.

Thou didst in no wise render honor to the lifeless altars; worshiping the immortal God Who manifested Himself as a mortal for our sake and hath slain the strength of the deceiver. Wherefore, thou hast obtained true life, O wise martyr.

Dragged from place to place, O athlete, thou didst hallow the earth with thy steps; and, bowing thy neck beneath the severing sword, thou wast parted from the flesh and united unto God.

Aflame with desire for God, thou didst overcome all manner of beatings and tortures of the flesh; and having finished thy good race, thou didst join the myriads on high.

The strength of the incorporeal foe was cast down, and the martyrs of Christ vanquished him in weakness of their flesh, strengthened by the omnipotent might of the Master.

O wise Agathonicus, as one crowned thou now standest radiantly before the Trinity, amid the holy choirs of the sacred apostles, in the mansions of the athletes, in the folds of the venerable, honored with the prophets, rejoicing with them.

In that thy love was wondrous, thy faith firm, thy hope in God good, thy life luminous, and thy death full of grace, O martyr and athlete, He hath made thee to share in immortal glory.

As is meet, O wise Agathonicus, we praise thee as a lamb of Christ, a sacred immolation, the beauty of athletes, a well-spring of miracles, the comely adornment of the Church, O divinely wise one.

Thy most holy memory which sanctifieth the world hath now come upon us, O most glorious martyr; and thereon we pray to receive thine aide, honoring thee with love, O Agathonicus, as a good favorite of the Word.