Righteous Joseph of Arimathea

Commemorated on July 31

      Righteous Joseph of Arimathea was a secret disciple of our Lord Jesus Christ. As a member of the Sanhedrin he did not participate in the "counsel and deed" of the Jews in passing a death sentence for Jesus Christ. After the Crucifixion and Death of the Saviour he made bold to go to Pilate and demand of him the Body of the Lord, to Which he gave burial with the help of Righteous Nicodemus, who was likewise a secret disciple of the Lord. They took down from the Cross the Body of the Saviour, wrapped it in a winding-cloth or plaschanitsa, and placed it in a new-hewn tomb, in which no one earlier had been buried (this tomb Saint Joseph had prepared previously for himself) – in the Garden of Gethsemane, in the presence of the Mother of God and the holy Myrh-Bearing Women. Having rolled an heavy stone before the entrance of the tomb, they then departed (Jn. 19: 37-42; Mt. 27: 57-61; Mk. 15: 43-47; Lk. 24: 50-56).
      Saint Joseph died peacefully in Anglium (England).

© 1996-2001 by translator Fr. S. Janos.