Our patron, St. Ephraim the Syrian
Saint Ephraim the Syrian, our patron, was born at the beginning of the fourth century in the city of Nisibis in Mesopotamia. A teacher of repentance, Saint Ephraim is perhaps best known as a prolific poet, theologian and writer of hymns. More than 400 of the hymns he composed still exist today.
Saint Ephraim’s writings address the deep human experiences not only of suffering and humility, but also of victory over the enemy, that are so very familiar to those struggling with addiction. His beautiful psalms of healing continue to be an inspiration today.
Who will cure my soul if not Thou, O Christ, the only Physician of souls! Where will I find a remedy for the disease of my soul, if not with Thee, O fountain of healing!
May Thy compassion descend on me and help me to destroy the enemy.
Accept the tears of my wretchedness and blot out the record of my debts, and again will the enemy be ashamed, seeing that Thy loving-kindness has destroyed the fruit of his wicked deeds and that I will not be punished.
May Thy compassion come to mine aid, that I might pass safely through the realm of temptation, and that I might thereafter be close to Thee, with Thee always.
My sinful soul will glorify Thee and Thy Father and the Holy Spirit, for she has wept and been heard, and, washed with tears of repentance, she has been made a temple inhabited by the Divinity which has created the world.
Excerpted from Psalm 74, Healing Tears of Repentance
St. Ephraim the Syrian