The MonkMartyr Onufrii
Commemorated on January 4
Onufrii, in the world Matfei (Matthew), was born in Bulgaria in the
settlement of Gabrovo in Tyrnovsk diocese. Matfei received a fine education,
but in place of worldly blessings he preferred service to God, and he went to
Athos to the Khilendaria monastery. Here he took monastic vows with the name
Manassiya (Manassas). but even the strict asceticism of a monk on Mount Athos
did not fully satisfy the self-strictness of the monk, and Manassiya decided to
suffer for Christ. With this desire he became involved with the starets
Nikifor. The elder vowed him to schema-monk with the name Onufrii and, having
been given admonition, he set off with the Monk Gregory to the Turkish island
of Chios. There the MonkMartyr Onufrii openly confessed the Christian faith,
for which he was seized and subjected to cruel tortures.
© 1996-2001 by translator Fr. S. Janos.