Δευτέρα 11 Μαρτίου 2024

Saint Sophronios Patriarch of Jerusalem, March 11

 Ἔσπευδε τηρεῖν καὶ κεραίαν τοῦ νόμου,
Ὁ Σωφρόνιος, οὗ παρ᾽ οὐρανοῖς κέρας.
Ἑνδεκάτῃ σαόφρων ἔδυ Σωφρόνιος παρὰ τύμβον.
Saint Sophronius (Arabic: سفرونيوس, c. 560 – 11 March 638), Sophronius I of Jerusalem, called Sophronius the Sophist, was the Patriarch of Jerusalem from 634 until his death. He is honored as a saint in the Eastern Orthodox and Catholic Churches. Before reaching the primacy of Jerusalem, he was a monk and theologian who was the main protagonist of orthodox teaching in the doctrinal controversy about the essential nature of Jesus and his volitional acts. He is also known for negotiating the surrender of Jerusalem to the Muslim caliph Umar ibn al-Khattab.

He was born in Damascus, Syria about 560. It has been argued that he is of Byzantine Greek or Syrian descent. ] near Bethlehem. He received a great philosophical and theological education. He went to Jerusalem, where he became a monk in the Monastery of Agios Theodosios and devoted himself to deeper theological and ecclesiological studies. He was an opponent of the heresy of Monothelitism, which he fought by writing many anti-heretical works. For his great contribution, in 634 he was elected Patriarch of Jerusalem. From this position, he continued with greater intensity his struggle against the Monothelitists. After many numerous struggles, he surrendered his soul to the Lord on March 11, 638.

Trips
Traveling to monastic centers in Asia Minor, Egypt and Rome, he accompanied the Byzantine chronicler Saint John Moschos, who dedicated to him his festival about religious life, the Spiritual Meadow (and whose feast day in the Byzantine ceremony, March 11 [O.S. March 24], shared with Sophronius). On the death of Moschus in Rome in 619, Sophronius accompanied the body back to Jerusalem for monastic burial. He traveled to Alexandria, Egypt and Constantinople in the year 633 to persuade the respective patriarchs to renounce Monoenergism, a heterodox teaching that espoused a single, divine energy in Christ, excluding the human capacity for choice. Apart from his synodal letter on the Third Council of Constantinople, Sophronius' extensive writings on this matter have been lost.
Elect Patriarch
Although he failed in his mission to condemn Monoenergism, Sophronius was elected patriarch of Jerusalem in 634. Immediately after his enthronement he sent his noted synodal letter to Pope Honorius I and the Eastern patriarchs, explaining the orthodox belief in two natures, human and divine. theia , of Christ, in contrast to Monoenergism, which he regarded as a subtle form of heretical Monophysitism (which posited a single divine nature for Christ).[9] In addition, he composed a Florilegium ("Anthology") of about 600 texts from the Early Church Fathers in favor of the Christian doctrine of Diothelitism (which posits both human and divine wills in Christ). This document has also been lost

Teachings
In his Christmas sermon of 634, Sophronius was more concerned with maintaining the clergy's Chalcedonian view of God, giving only the most conventional warnings of the Saracen advance into Palestine, commenting that the Saracens already controlled Bethlehem. Sophronius, who viewed Saracen control of Palestine as "unwitting agents of God's inevitable punishment of weak and wavering Christians," died soon after the fall of Jerusalem to Caliph Umar I in 637, but not before he had negotiated the recognition. of political and religious freedom for Christians in return for tribute - an agreement known as the Treaty of Umari. The caliph himself came to Jerusalem and met with the patriarch in the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. Sophronius invited Umar to pray there, but Umar refused, fearing to jeopardize the Church's status as a Christian temple. According to the Passion of the 60 Martyrs of Gaza, Sophronius was executed by Amr ibn al-As for baptizing Muslim converts at a time of rising tensions when an earthquake destroyed an early mosque on the Temple Mount.

In addition to the polemics, Sophronius' writings included a eulogy for the Alexandrian martyrs Cyrus and John in gratitude for the extraordinary cure of his failed vision. He also wrote 23 Anacreontic (classical meter) poems on subjects such as the Muslim siege of Jerusalem and various liturgical festivals. His Anacreontica 19 and 20 seem to be an expression of his longing for the Holy City, possibly while he was away from Jerusalem on one of his many journeys. The order of the two poems must be reversed to create a correct order of the different themes. Arranged in this way, the two poems describe a complete circuit of the major shrines of Jerusalem in the late 6th century, described as the golden age of Christianity in the Holy Land. The subjects of Anacreontikus 20 include the gates of Jerusalem (or Solyma), the Resurrection, the Rock of the Cross, the Basilica of Constantinople, Mount Zion, the Praetorium, St. Mary of the Probatica, and Gethsemane. The Mount of Olives, Bethany, and Bethlehem follow in Anacreontikon 19. Sophronius also wrote the Life of St. Mary of Egypt, which is read on the Fifth Thursday of Lent in the Byzantine Rite.

Work
As an excellent musician and hymn writer, he composed various tropes, the verse idioms of the great Hours of the Despotic holidays of Christmas ("Bethlehem étoimazu") and Epiphany, Good Friday and the Great Sanctification "Voice of the Lord...". He is considered the first poet of Canon Triodes and Tetraodes, the number of which is numerous. Sophronios, when he was a monk, revised the standard of Saint Savvas and completed the Epilychnian hymn "Light Hilaron..."

Five epigrams of Sophronius are included in the Palatine Anthology (I 90, I 123, VII 679, VII 680, IX 787).

Feast
The Orthodox Church celebrates his memory on March 11.
Λειτουργικά κείμενα
Ἀπολυτίκιον
Ἦχος δ’.
Κανόνα πίστεως, καὶ εἰκόνα πραότητος, ἐγκρατείας διδάσκαλον, ἀνέδειξε σε τῇ ποίμνῃ σου, ἡ τῶν πραγμάτων ἀλήθεια· διὰ τοῦτο ἐκτήσω τῇ ταπεινώσει τὰ ὑψηλά, τῇ πτωχείᾳ τὰ πλούσια. Πάτερ Ἱεράρχα Σωφρόνιε, πρέσβευε Χριστῷ τῷ θεῷ, σωθῆναι τὰς ψυχὰς ἡμῶν.

Έτερον Ἀπολυτίκιον
Ἦχος πλ. α’. Τὸν συνάναρχον Λόγον.
Σωφροσύνης τὴν αἴγλην πλουτήσας Ὅσιε, τῆς εὐσέβειας ἐκφαίνεις τὸν ὑπὲρ νοῦν φωτισμόν, ταὶς τῶν λόγων ἀστραπαὶς Πάτερ Σωφρόνιε, σὺ γὰρ σοφίας κοινωνός, διὰ βίου γεγονῶς, στηρίζεις τὴν Ἐκκλησίαν, ὡς εὐκλεὴς Ἱεράρχης, καὶ πρεσβευτὴς ἠμῶν πρὸς Κύριον.

Έτερον Ἀπολυτίκιον 
Ἦχος πλ. δ’. Ταχὺ προκατάλαβε.
Σωφρόνως τὸν βίον σου, διαγαγὼν ἐκ παιδός, τὴν χάριν τοῦ Πνεύματος, εἰσεποήσω σαφῶς, Σωφρόνιε πάνσοφε· ὅθεν ἱεραρχίας, ταῖς ἀκτῖσιν ἐκλάμψας, ὤφθης τῆς εὐσεβείας, εὐκλεὴς ὑποφήτης. Καὶ νῦν δυσώπει Ὅσιε, ὑπερ τῶν τιμώντων σε.

Κοντάκιον
Ἦχος δ’. Ἐπεφάνης σήμερον.
Λαμπρυνθείς τοῦ Πνεύματος τῆ ἐπιπνοίᾳ, Ἱεράρχης ὅσιος, ὡς Ἀποστόλων μιμητής, ἐν τῇ Σιὼν ἐχρημάτισας, Πάτερ παμμάκαρ, Σωφρόνιε πάνσοφε.

Κάθισμα
Ἦχος δ’. Ταχὺ προκατάλαβε.
Τοῖς λόγοις ἐκόσμησας τὴν Ἐκκλησίαν Χριστοῦ, τοῖς ἔργοις ἐτήρησας τὸ κατ' εἰκόνα Θεοῦ, Σωφρόνιε Ὅσιε· ἔλαμψε γὰρ ἐν κόσμῳ, ἡ ἐν σοὶ σωφροσύνη, χάριτας διδαγμάτων, ἀπαστράπτουσα πᾶσι, τοῖς πίστει ἑορτάζουσι Πάτερ τὴν μνήμην σου.