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Rufâ'el (Rafael)

The archangel Rufâ'el rescues a church from a whale.

 

From: THE ETHIOPIC SYNAXARIUM page 1274-75

 

III. PAGUEMEN

 

IN THE NAME OF THE FATHER AND THE SON

AND THE HOLY GHOST, ONE GOD

On this day are commemorated the glorious angel RUFA'EL

(RAPHAEL) the archangel, the third of the vigilant, holy and

heavenly archangels; and the dedication of his church, which

was built to him on an island outside the city of Alexandria in

the days of Saint THEOPHILUS the archbishop; and the miracle

which was made manifest therein, and took place thus. A

certain rich woman from the city of Rome came to Saint

rHEOPHILUS the archbishop, [fol. I57b I] and with her were

her son and a picture of the glorious Archangel R Ű F A 'E L

(RAPHAEL), and much money which she had inherited from

her parents. And she cleared away the heap of rubbish which

was in front of the archbishop's house, and there appeared from

beneath it a treasure of gold, even as we have written [in the

section for] the eighteenth day of Tekemt. And Saint Abbĺ

THEOPHILUS built many churches, and among them was the

church which was on the island outside the city of Alexandria,

and was dedicated in the name of the glorious Archangel

RUFA 'E L (RAPHAEL); and Abbĺ THEOPHILUS the archbishop

(p.1275) finished the building thereof and consecrated it as it were this

day. And whilst the believers were praying in the church,

behold the church trembled, and was rent asunder, and it

moved about. And they found that the church had been built

upon the back of a whale of the whales of the sea, on which a

very large mass of sand had heaped itself. Now the whale lay

firmly fixed in its place, and the treadings of the feet of the

people upon it cut it off from the mainland; and it was Satan

who moved the whale so that he might throw down the church.

And the believers and the archbishop cried out together, and

made supplication to the Lord Christ, and they asked for the

intercession of the glorious Archangel RUFĹ 'EL (RAPHAEL).

And God, the Most High, sent the glorious angel RUFĹ 'EL

(RAPHAEL), and he had mercy on the children of men, and he

drove his spear into the w hale, saying unto him, " By the com-

mandment of God stand still, and move not thyself from thy

place"; and the w hale stood in his place and moved not. And

many signs and wonders were made manifest, and great healings

of sick folk [fol. 157b 2] took place in that church. And this

church continued to exist until the time when the Muslims

reigned, and then it was destroyed, and the whale moved, and

the sea flowed back again and drowned many people who dwelt

in that place.