Severus of Al-Ushmunain: How St Mark Healed and Converted a Cobbler in Alexandria Friday, Apr 25 2014 


April 25th is the Feast of St Mark the Evangelist.

Mark journeyed to the city of Alexandria; and when he entered in at the gate, the strap of his shoe broke.

And when he saw this, he thought: «Now I know that the Lord has made my way easy».

Then he turned, and saw a cobbler there, and went to him and gave him the shoe that he might mend it.

And when the cobbler received it, and took the awl to work upon it, the awl pierced his hand. So he said: «Heis ho Theos»; the interpretation of which is, «God is One».

And. when the holy Mark heard him mention the name of God, he rejoiced greatly, and turned his face to the East and said: «O my Lord Jesus, it is thou that makest my road easy in every place».

Then he spat on the ground and took from it clay, and put it on the place where the awl had pierced the cobbler’s hand, saying:

«In the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Ghost, the One living and eternal God, may the hand of this man be healed at this moment, that thy holy name may be glorified».

Then his hand at once became whole.

[…] The cobbler remained astonished at the power of God which descended upon the holy Mark, and said to him: «I pray thee, O man of God, to come to the dwelling of thy servant, to rest and eat bread, for I find that to-day thou hast conferred a benefit upon me».

[…] After they had eaten, the cobbler said to him: «O my father, I beg thee to make known to me who thou art that hast worked this great miracle».

Then the saint answered him: «I serve Jesus Christ, the Son of the ever living God». The cobbler exclaimed: «I would that I could see him».

The holy Mark said to him: «I will cause thee to behold him». Then he began to teach him the gospel of good tidings, and the doctrine of the glory and power and dominion which belong to God from the beginning, and…ended by saying to him:

«The Lord Christ in the last times became incarnate of the Virgin Mary, and came into the world, and saved us from our sins». And he explained to him what the prophets prophesied of him, passage by passage.

[…] Then when the cobbler had heard wisdom and the words of the Scriptures from the holy Mark, together with the great miracle which he had seen him work upon his hand, his heart inclined towards him, and he believed in the Lord, and was baptized, he and all the people of his house, and all his neighbours.

Severus of Al-Ushmunain (d. 987): History of the Patriarchs of the Coptic Church of Alexandria.

The image, found at Pravmir, is a Coptic icon of St Mark, the first of the Coptic Patriarchs of Alexandria in the history written by Severus.

Severus of Al-Ushmunain: The Mercy and Compassion of God the Word Tuesday, Feb 25 2014 

St.-Mark-the-ApostleThe merciful, the compassionate one, the Lord Christ, gave himself by the mystery of his Incarnation to save his creatures, and vanquished the mighty by humility and weakness, and speaks through the mouth of his prophets by the Holy Ghost.

When it pleased him to manifest himself on earth and become incarnate, that he might save his creatures whom he had created after the likeness of the image of his majesty, he appeared among them in a human body, born of the Virgin Mary, most excellent of women in creation.

For he had elected her from among the offspring of Adam, the sinner and rebel against his Lord, who obeyed his enemy and broke the commandment of his Creator, so that it was necessary that he should die, as God had said to him when he warned him not to disobey.

But Adam would not listen, desiring to be a god and similar to his Creator, and so was caught in the net of stumbling.

Yet even then God the Word had mercy upon him in pity for him, and became incarnate. He, the uncreated in respect of his Godhead, the man in respect of his humanity, the pure from all sin.

And the Virgin Mary bore him in her womb and brought him forth, by a mystery to which the intelligence of creatures cannot attain, and by which he exalted her above all other created beings in heaven or on earth; above the angels, the powers, the principalities, the cherubim and the seraphim, and all whom God has made in heaven or on earth.

For she became the throne of him who is Lord of the first and the last, without division or change, of him whom no space can enclose, and no time contain.

And when, in his unattainable wisdom, he established his dispensation, and the union of his humanity with his divinity, the mystery of which is hidden from all in heaven or on earth, he chose his disciples, the apostles, and gave them the great commission, authorising them to bind and to loose.

And so likewise their successors after them inherit this gift in all regions of the world, each one following his predecessor. Thus the inheritance of this power, which Christ gave to the great father and evangelist, Mark, the apostle, is carried on to his successor, the patriarch who sits upon his episcopal throne in the great city of Alexandria, in the midst of the regions where he preached.

Severus of Al-Ushmunain (d. 987): History of the Coptic Patriarchs of Alexandria, Second Preface.

The image, found at Pravmir, is a Coptic icon of St Mark, the first of the Coptic Patriarchs of Alexandria in the history written by Severus.