Sainted Kozma, Bishop of Chalcedon, and his companion the Monk Auxentios

Commemorated on April 18

      Sainted Kozma, Bishop of Chalcedon, and his companion the Monk Auxentios, lived during the IX Century, at a time when the Iconoclasts oppressed the adherents of Orthodoxy. Saint Kozma while still in his youth had withdrawn to a monastery and accepted monastic tonsure. Afterwards he was ordained to the dignity of bishop of Chalcedon and he zealously defended the Orthodox faith against the Iconoclast heretics. The Monk Auxentios was an helper to the saint in this struggle.
      The Iconoclasts tried in manifold ways to sway the saint over to their side, but he remained faithful to Orthodoxy to the very end. Saint Kozma did not obey the decree of the emperor Leo the Armenian (813-820) about the discarding of holy icons from the churches. For this he was expelled from his cathedra-seat and exiled to prison. When the saint returned from exile, he continued with Saint Auxentios to defend the veneration of holy icons. At the mitigation of the persecution, Saint Kozma was weak in body, but remained all the more strong in spirit. Sainted Kozma (+ c. 815-820) and the Monk Auxentios to their very end steadfastly preserved the Orthodox faith.

1996-2001 by translator Fr. S. Janos.

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