My beloved brothers and sisters in Our Risen Lord, God, and Savior Jesus Christ,

[Part II]

Evnomianos the Saint’s father was filled with fear and trembling. Great astonishment was instilled in his soul. Then the couple approached the most venerable Archbishop and gave him the customary greeting. He vouchsafed the child the seal of Christ. Then after having given some instruction or catechism to the parents, he baptized the girl, naming her Elisabeth, as the Martyr foretold. The hierarch prayed at length for the infant just baptized, after which he spoke to the newly-illumined Elisabeth and said, "Through thee, child, may the Lord be gracious to me, granting me forgiveness of my sins." The parents then returned to their home rejoicing. The child kept on advancing in wisdom and stature.

Saint Elisabeth entered the Women’s Monastery of the Holy and Great-Martyr George of "the little hill" as it was called. Elisabeth’s paternal aunt was the hegumene or abbess. She undertook to tread the path of ascetic, struggles and dedicate her life as a bride of Christ. She desired to become one of the assembly of pious nuns. She was clad in the Angelic Schema or the monastics, to which conduct of ascetic struggle she went forth with all her soul. Elisabeth succeeded in attaining every kind of virtue, so as to become replete with all the gifts of the Spirit. In imitation of the great Moses and Elias the Thesbite, she oftentimes engaged n forty-day fasts, without partaking of food. She never partook of oil but was nourished solely upon the heavenly bread alone, that is, the Eucharist. Since she was continually adorned with exalting humility and noetically contemplated divine beauty with the eyes of the heart, she di not wish to lift up her eyes to heaven at all. Consequently, for three years, Elisabeth kept her head downward. She, therefore, fastened her mind only upon God, never beholding the beauty and breadth of the sky. She was so aflame with divine love that she tolerated with fortitude the cold and icy winters, even with feet bereft of shoes.

Two years after her journey in the Women’s Monastery, her father’s sister departed from this present life after appointing the Righteous Elisabeth as her successor. The Office of Hegoumene (Abbess) of that Monastery was confirmed by the great Genadios, who was then steering the Patriarchate. By her godly labors, she manifested the superiority of her excellences and the height of her extreme virtue and perfection. She was accounted worthy by God of such divine energy that she was enabled to heal incurable diseases and dispel demons by invoking Christ. She also was vouchsafed divine illumination and revelation from on high, so that she prophetically foretold future events.

There were numerous miracles attributed to Saint Elisabeth. She came to the aid of people who lived in a neighborhood with many old ruins and abandoned buildings where there as a lair of a dragon. Since many suffered injury and loss, no one could pass through safely. When the holy Elisabeth learned of these conditions she was inspired by divine zeal. She took into her hands the weapon of the Cross and went to that suburb. She lifted her eyes heavenward and called upon help from on high. Though the beast did not wish to emerge, yet she summoned that creature to come forth from its lair. She then made the Sign of the Cross over the reptile. She next filled her mouth with saliva and spat upon its head. Following this, with her feet, she trampled the creature underfoot and slew the dragon, saying, "Thou shalt tread upon asp and basilisk, and thou shall trample underfoot lion and dragon, with the honorable Cross as a wall of protection. As a result of her fearless deed, the entire city was utterly delivered from the menace of that reptile. Therefore, her fame spread throughout the region.

Since her good fame had spread, there came forward a father and his daughter. The man, wealthy and wellborn, had an only daughter who was afflicted with an issue of blood. The father expended the greater pat of his fortune on physicians in order his daughter’s infirmity. The physicians were unable to help his infirm child. Finally, after having grown weary of finding salvation from the doctors, he brought his child to the holy Hegoumene (Abbess). He placed her before the feet of Mother Elisabeth and, with tear-filled eyes, pleaded, "Save my unfortunate daughter, O slave of God! It is to God and thy holy prayers and hands that I commit her. Indeed, if thou dost wish it, take all that I possess." The Saint answered him sincerely, "On the one hand, that which is in thy house, child, keep as thine own; for I have need of none of those things. On the other hand, if thou believes unhesitatingly and in accordance with the Gospel commandments, give thy promise to abide to the end both humble-minded and merciful to the poor, and thy daughter shall be cured." Mother Elisabeth anointed the daughter with holy oil from the vigil lamp set before the Great Martyr George. The daughter was restored to health. The father and daughter, rejoicing and giving thanks to God, were then sent to their home by the woman of God. Now there were many other women who also suffered from the same disease of hemorrhaging, which infirmity caused their strength to fail. They, with faith, approached Mother Elisabeth and received healing for the issue of blood infirmity.

Among the others who also visited the Saint, there as a man who had been blind from birth. When he learned of the Venerable woman’s miracle, he came being led by the hand. He said to Mother Elisabeth, "Have mercy on me, O thou faithful disciple of God! Do thou open my eyes, so that, seeing the sweet light by means of thee, I may glorify the Creator of all." The blessed woman was moved to pity by his lamentations. Without delay, she raised her hands heavenward and sent up supplication. She then took holy oil from the lamp of Saint George and anointed the blind man’s eyes. By the close of seven days, he was able to see sharply. He, thereupon, glorified God with a great voice.

Saint Elisabeth left Herakleia, boarding a ship. She arrived at her sacred Monastery on the 1st of April. Thereafter, she did not cease in exhorting and admonishing the sisterhood with her honey-tongued teaching. By beseeching, instructing, and teaching them at length, she stressed all those edifying disciplines that lead to salvation. When the number of appointed days had been completed before her repose, she celebrated with splendor that gladsome and universal feast of the Ever-Memorable Martyr George on the 23rd of April, which was also the feast day of the Women’s Monastery. After she communicated the immaculate and Life-Giving Mysteries (Sacraments), her countenance, straightway, shone radiantly as the sun. Replete with joy and good cheer, she raised her hands and stretched forth her arms, crying aloud with thanksgiving, "Now lettest Thy handmaid depart in peace, O Master, according to Thy word; for mine eyes have seen Thy salvation."

From the sixth hour, that is, noon, she was taken with a high fever. Mother Elisabeth continued until the next day. Then, at the third hour, that is, nine in the morning, she commended her spirit into the hands of God. She reposed in peace on the 24th day of April. All the monastics from the surrounding monasteries hastened to pay their last respects to the monument of virtue. She was reverently interred in the church of the Holy Great Martyr George.

Such were the life, the works, and the spiritual gifts by which the Master of All glorified her both while she lived and after she was translated to the realms on high. Through her intercessions, may all of us, who desire to have rendered to us her protection and help, ever be preserved and held above both bodily and spiritual passions! Thus, in this way, may we escape harm from the scandals and stumbling blocks of the invisible and visible enemies. And having finished the present life in peace, may we attain that blessedness in Christ Jesus our Lord, to Whom belongs all glory, honor, and veneration, now and ever and to the ages of ages! Amen.

"Glory Be To GOD
All Things!"

– Saint John Chrysostomos
+ + +

With sincere agape in His All-Glorious and Divine Resurrection,
The sinner and unworthy servant of God

+ Father George

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s