The Life of St. John the Theologian – Chapter 4

7 September 12

The Life and Struggles of the
Holy Apostle and Evangelist
John the Theologian

CHAPTER 4

THE DEATH OF DIOSCORIDES

“While this transpired, however, Dioscorides, the owner of the bath-house, and the father of Domnus, learned of his son’s death, and died of his profound grief. His servants hastened to find Domnus, who was with John. When Domnus heard the news he ran home, and found his father lying dead. He then retuned to John exceedingly sorrowful and, falling at his feet, wept and besought him, saying: ‘O man of God, as I was dead and thou gavest me life, do likewise unto my father who died on my account! I would prefer to die rather than see my father dead.’ John took Domnus by the hand and, raising him up said: ‘Do not sorrow, my child, for thy father’s death will usher in life for him and for thyself.’ John took Domnus by the hand and went to his house,. where they found the dead Dioscorides. Behind them followed Romana and a crowd of others. Then John made supplication and, taking Dioscorides by the hand, exclaimed: ‘In the name of Jesus Christ Who is God, arise!’ And straightway the dead man sat up. All who saw this were astonished and struck with awe. Some remarked that John was God, others that he was a necromancer.

“Slowly Dioscorides came to himself and said to John: ‘O man of God, thou hast given life to me and my son!’ John answered: ‘Jesus Christ, the Son of God, Whom I preach hath granted thee and thy son life.’ Dioscorides then fell at John’s feet and said: ‘Behold, I and my son, ad all we possess, are in thy hands.’ He then proceeded to show him his wealth, and said: ‘Take it all and make us servants of thy God.’ John said: ‘Neither we nor our God have need of thy things, for we have forsaken everything to follow Him.’ Dioscorides continued: ‘And where have ye followed Him?’ John then began to speak saying: ‘Hearken to divine mysteries Dioscorides. The all-merciful and all-good God beheld the race of man benighted by great delusion in the worship of demons and in the depths of ignorance. He took pity on His creation and sent His Son into the world, Who was incarnate of the Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary and bacameth Man, so as to teach men to put far away from themselves the deceit of the demons, and to heal every disease and sickness, both great and small. Him did the Jews condemn to be crucified, for thus did He so forordain. Therefore, the Son of God suffered in the flesh, and f His own will died, descended into hades, and delivered the souls held captive there from ages past. He arose, as befitteth God, on the third day, and appeared to us, His twelve disciples, and ate and drank with us. He commanded us to go forth into all the world and to teach  and baptize in the name of the Father and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. All, therefore, who believe and are baptized will be saved, and unbelievers will be condemned.

Dioscorides said to John: ‘Man of God, baptize us in the name of thy God.’ John answered: ‘Command all those who are here to go outside.’ When all had left the house, behold, Romana came in holding our documents of sale and fell at John’s feet, saying: ‘Take these and tear up the handwriting of my sins, and give me the Christian seal of baptism!’ John took the papers and rent them in pieces and, that very hour, baptized Dioscorides, Domnus, and Romana. Then, at Dioscorides’ request we all went to the bath-house, to the spot where the unclean spirit had slain its victims, and cast it out. Afterwards, Dioscorides took us back to his house and laid a table, where we thanked God and ate; and then we sojourned in his home.

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The Life of St. John the Theologian – Chapter 3

7 September 12

The Life and Struggles of the
Holy Apostle and Evangelist
John the Theologian

CHAPTER 3

THE DEATH OF DOMNUS

“In the bath-house there was diabolical activity at work. When it was first being built, Satan incited these deluded idolaters to bury in the foundation, under the stones, either a fifteen or sixteen-year old youth or maiden, that it might go well in the bath-house. With this bloodthirsty murder of an innocent child, Satan began to dwell therein with demons. To continue this practice, three times a year, either a youth or a maiden was drowned. Dioscorides, the owner of the bath-house, made a record of the dates on which these deaths occurred. This is because he had a comely son, Domnus who was eighteen years old. On those dates which he noted in years past, he would not permit his son to enter the bath-house.

“After we had served for three months, Domnus came in one day. I accompanied him, together with his servants, bearing the vessels of my trade. Immediately, the vile demon rushed upon him and strangled him. When the servants realized what was happening, they began to weep and gnash themselves. They went out and reported it to Romana. When she heard this, she cast down the diadem from her head and began to pull her hair out, and with many tears and great wailing, said: ‘Woe is me! How will I defend myself against my master Dioscorides? Perhaps he might die himself from grief. since Domnus was his only son. O great Artemis of the Ephesians, help us! Show thy power and raise the dead youth! All the inhabitants know that thou governest everything by thy great might and signs. Wherefore, raise thy servant Domnus, and return him, alive, to his father!’ Romana uttered this and many other similar things. She tore at her arms and body, pulled out the hairs of her head, and stood, weeping in her rent garments. The people gathered, some to mourn Domnus, and others just to marvel at the profound grief of Romana.

“John paused in his labor and approached me, asking why Romana was weeping so bitterly. Before I could utter a word, Romana caught sight of us and hastened to seize John, and cried: ‘Warlock! Admit thy sorcery, for from the day that thou didst enter into my service, we have been abandoned by our goddess Artemis! Therefore, restore to life my master’s son this very hour, or I will part thy soul from thy body!’ John sad: ‘Tell me what hath happened that thou dost grieve so deeply.’ Then Romana, moved by her fury and passion, smote John on the face and said: ‘Wicked servant! All the people of Ephesus know what hath happened; and dost thou now come to vex me  by saying that thou knowest not the terrible event that hath befallen me? Hast thou not heard that the son of my master Dioscorides hath died within the bath?’ John was calm and withdrew to pray, entering the bathing area. By his prayer he expelled the abominable demons and restored the soul to the youth’s body, and he rose from the dead. John then took Domnus by the hand and led him out of the bath. He brought him before Romana and said: ‘Receive thy master’s son.’ When Romana beheld the resurrection  of Domnus, she was utterly astonished, and fear and trembling came upon her. She gave no further thought to Domnus; death, though he had been dead and lifeless as a stone for two hours. Later, when she recovered her senses, she dared not to look on John’s face because of her shame, preferring rather to die. She thought within herself: ‘How will I look upon that man’s face, which I buffeted with so many blows-and for no reason? Where can I hide myself? If only the earth would open up and swallow me! O death, I call upon thee! Come and rid me of my disgrace!’

“John noticed that her face was transformed. Se was ready to bow to the earth before him, but he held her hand and thrice made over her the sign of the precious and life-giving Cross. She fell to John’s feet, and, weeping bitterly, said: ‘I implore thee, tell me who thou art; for I take thee to be God or the Son of God.’ John said to her: ‘I am John, the disciple of the Son of God, who lay on His breast and heard divine mysteries. If thou believeth in Him, thou shalt become His handmaid, as I am His servant.’ Romana listed and with deep shame and fear said to John: ‘First, O man of God, forgive me for all in which I have transgressed against thee.’ John responded: ‘If thou believest in our Lord Jesus Christ, all thine iniquities will be forgiven..’ She replied: ‘I believe, O man of God, every word that cometh forth from thy mouth.’

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Daring Greatly

7 September 12

A friend and coworker of mine sent me a random IM via Facebook the other day because she wanted to share with me something that she had found. It was a site called “Daring Greatly” and the specific page she linked to had the following image:

This image resonated with me and apparently today, in honor of “back to school” (apparently, this blog is “East Coast” because we started almost a month ago now..) the blogger was offering an 8×10 pdf of the above mentioned image. Well, I got a copy of it, and I am ging ot mail it to my boss and see if she wants to join me in laminating this print and adding it to my classroom, aswell as others.