Memory 1 (14) May
Holy Hierarch Zosime of Kumurdo
|Holy Hierarch Zosime of Kumurdo
Saint Zosime of Kumurdo lived and labored from the endof the 15th century through the first half of the 16th century.To the world he was known as Zebede. He was raisedby Princess Ketevan, the daughter of King Giorgi VIII(1446–1466).
In 1515 Zebede was tonsured a monk and given the new nameZosime. It is believed that in the same year he was also consecrated abishop. An inscription at Kumurdo Church attests to his hierarchicalrank: “May the Lord have mercy on Zosime, bishop of Kumurdo.Amen.”
St. Zosime is credited with compiling a handwritten anthology ofprayers, homilies, and other writings in the year 1537. The anthologyconcludes with two of the holy father’s own wills.
In addition to his pastoral, educational and church-building activityin the Kumurdo diocese, St. Zosime also performed many importantworks in the Holy Land of Jerusalem. In the 15th and 16thcenturies the struggle between Orthodox Christians and Roman Catholicsover whom God had appointed heir to the holy hill of Golgothabecame particularly acute, and the Orthodox Church was forced to defendthe rights that it had acquired in previous centuries. At that timeSt. Zosime arrived in the Holy Land and joined the struggle to liberateGolgotha from the Catholics. In honor of his valiant efforts, two vigillamps were later hung in his name in the churches at Golgotha and theHoly Cross Monastery.
It is significant to note that from the 15th century the names ofthe bishops of Kumurdo have been inscribed in an important chronicle called Ertgulebis Tsigni, or The Book of Faith. Throughouthistory the hierarchs of Kumurdo have defended the unity of theGeorgian Church and stood steadfast as pillars of national-religioussentiment and examples of faith.
On October 17, 2002, the Georgian Church canonized the holyhierarch Zosime of Kumurdo and reinstated the bishopric of ancientKumurdo.
O Holy Hierarch Zosime, good shepherd and beautifier of churches,through thy prayers illumine the lamp of our faith and account us whovenerate thy name worthy to find rest in the Lord’s eternal Kingdom!