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October 20, 2023

Miracles of Saint Artemios the Great Martyr (11 - 12)

In the seventh century an Anonymous author compiled a number of miracles of Saint Artemios, whose healing activities were predominantly centered in the Church of Saint John the Forerunner in Constantinople and who "specialized" in healing hernias and diseases affecting the genitals of mostly male patients. Below are two examples of the forty-five listed:

Miracle 11: The Lady of the Double Bath of Paschentios

There was a certain woman who was in charge of the double bath of the hospital in the quarter of Paschentios, which is near the palace of the Deuteron. Now it happened that the babe which she had at her breast had developed a hernia and it was not possible for him to stop crying and bawling because of the pain. The mother was at a loss as to what she should do, since she could not leave the baths and, as she wished, wait upon the saint because she lived all alone with her husband. Then, in consequence of some divine admonition, she conceived the following course of action. In one of the baths where they lived, she prepared a votive lamp in the name of Saint Artemios and as the next day was dawning, she seemed to see in her sleep one of the noblemen of the palace wearing a cloak and a belt entering the bath, in which the lamp was burning, in order to bathe. And he spoke to her thus: "Have my towels not come?" And he pretended to be angry with his servants and to make threats because they did not arrive before him bringing the towels, and he sat down on one of the benches. Since she was in sorrow and distressed, he asked her: "What is wrong, woman, and what are you distressed over?" To this she replied thus: "My child, lord, has suddenly suffered pain in his testicles and I wish to be off to Saint Artemios but I cannot forsake this place. Still, I have made the lamp in the name of Saint Artemios and behold even God Himself (so I hope) will visit him." He replied to her in turn: "You have done well for, since you trusted in God, He Himself will cure your child through Saint Artemios. But if my men get here, may the bathing attendant make a nice bath for me with best wishes for your son's health." After he spoke these words, the woman woke up. Her child started crying and was seeking to nurse. As she gave him her breast, he became cheerful and took pleasure in her. Confirming the truth of the vision by the infant's delight or rather having it confirmed by him, she touched the child and found that he was healthy and rising at dawn she hastened to give thanks to God and to the holy martyr. Taking a lamp and oil and whatever she had in hand for an offering, she went and gave glory to God Who exalted the martyr, and related the incredible miracle to all.

Miracle 12: From the Church of the Theotokos to Saint John's

Another woman had a son who suddenly suffered a hernia after his two testicles had become swollen and he could not stop crying because of the pain. The mother took him and waited in the Church of the Theotokos in the Ta Kyrou quarter, tearfully beseeching the Mother of God to receive mercy from her. Then someone appeared to her in a dream and said to her: "Carry your child to the Oxeia to Saint John's and wait upon Saint Artemios and your child will be fine." Getting up and taking the child, she went to the church specified to her and performed the customary rites. While she was waiting, the saint appeared to her in a dream in which he touched her son's testicles and said: "Christ our God, born of the Theotokos, He is the very One who heals you." Awakening, she found healthy and glorified God.

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