New Martyr Cyprian of Koutloumousiou Monastery, Mt. Athos (1679)

Commemorated on July 5

    "Born in the village of Klitzos in Epirus, Cyprian went off to the Holy Mountain after the death of his devout parents. He became a monk there and gave himself to asceticism in a cell near the monastery of Koutloumousion. He heaped labour upon labour on himself, asceticism upon asceticism, until he came to be known and respected all over the Holy Mountain. But he was not satisfied. He was tormented by the thought that he could not be saved but by martyrdom for Christ. He therefore left the Holy Mountain and went to Salonica, appeared before the Pasha of Salonica and urged him to discard the false, Mohammedan faith and receive the true Faith of Christ. The Pasha ordered that he be whipped and driven out of the city. Dissatisfied with such little suffering for Christ, Cyprian went to Constantinople and wrote a letter to the Grand Vizier in which he set down the falseness of Mahomet and the truth of Christ the Lord. The enraged Vizier sent him to Sheik ul-Islam, and the latter heard all that Cyprian had to say, then ordered that he be beheaded. Cyprian was filled with joy beyond measure, and went to the scaffold as to his wedding. Thus this godly man suffered for Christ on July 5, 1679, and fulfilled his strong desire." (Prologue)

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