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Apostle and Evangelist Matthew (November 16)
THE SYNAXARION
On November 16 in the Holy Orthodox Church we commemorate the holy Apostle and Evangelist Matthew.

He was the son of Alphaeus, and a tax collector when the Lord saw him in Capernaum and said: “Follow Me. And he arose, and followed Him (Matthew 9:9).” After that, Matthew received the Lord in his home and thus provided the occasion for the Lord to express several great truths about His coming to earth. After receiving the Holy Spirit, Matthew preached the Gospel to the Parthians, Medes and Ethiopians. Matthew baptized the wife and the son of the prince of Ethiopia, at which the prince became greatly enraged and dispatched a guard to bring Matthew to him for trial. The soldiers returned to the prince saying that they had heard Matthew’s voice, but could not see him with their eyes. The prince then sent a second guard. When this guard approached the apostle, he shone with a heavenly light so powerful that the soldiers could not look at him; filled with fear, they threw down their weapons and returned. The prince then went himself. Matthew radiated such light that the prince was instantly blinded. However, the holy apostle had a compassionate heart; he prayed to God, and the prince was given back his sight. Unfortunately, he arrested Matthew and subjected him to cruel tortures. Eventually, after Matthew’s death, the prince repented, was baptized, taking the name “Matthew” and served as a priest, giving up his princely wealth.  Matthew the Apostle wrote his Gospel in the Aramaic language. It was soon translated into Greek and the Greek text has come down to us, while the Aramaic text has been lost.

Through his intercessions, O Lord Jesus Christ our God, have mercy upon us, and save us. Amen.
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