Saint Mark

Saint Mark is credited with writing the oldest of the four canonical gospels. According to the Life of the Apostle and Evangelist Mark written by Severus, Bishop of Al-Ushmunain, in the late tenth century, Mark was one of the servants who poured out the water that Jesus turned into wine at the marriage at Cana, and that it was his house in which Jesus appeared to the disciples in hiding after His resurrection from the dead. After that time, Saint Peter and Saint Mark went out to evangelize, and one night, Peter had a dream in which he was told to go, along with Mark, to Rome and to Alexandria After preaching in Rome for a time, Mark went to Egypt and converted many to the Christian faith in the countryside; then leaving a small community of Christians there, he went to Alexandria. As soon as he entered the gates of the city, so the story goes, his sandal strap broke. He took it to a nearby shoemaker by the name of Anianus, who became his first convert in Alexandria. Mark soon discovered that he was being sought by his enemies, and so he appointed Anianus bishop, ordained three priests and seven deacons, and leaving them with orders to "serve and comfort the faithful brethren," he left the city. He returned years later to find the community he had left growing and thriving, but his enemies soon discovered him and threw him in prison. The next day, they threw a rope around his neck and dragged him over the ground until he died. But when they tried to burn the body, they found that it could not be harmed and scattered in fear. The Christians claimed the body from the pyre and buried it with reverence in the church they had built. Saint Mark is revered as the founder and first martyr of the Christian Church in Egypt.

© 2017 St. Peter & St. Paul Coptic Orthodox Church - Santa Monica, CA