(On Coptic Nationalism) - The 21 Coptic martyrs of Libya (one, Matthew Arayiga, was actually African martyr) were savagely beheaded by Islamic terrorist in Sirte, Libya, in February 2015. The Coptic Church has added their names to the Synaxarium; but, other Christians across the world have been touched by the courage and faith of the 21 martyrs who preferred death than denying Christ, and died with the name of Jesus on their mouth.
Edward Chrysogonus Yong, a Christian Singaporean of Chinese descent, wrote these two hymns “In honour of the 21 Coptic New-Martyrs of Libya”. A troparion, in Orthodox churches, is a short hymn of one stanza usually; and a kontakion is another type of hymn.
Troparion (Tone 1)
Like meek lambs ye cried out with your last breaths,/
‘O Lord Jesus’,/
And like roses blooming in the desert of Libya,/
Ye shed your blood for the Master./
With godly valour, ye showed your godless persecutors/
True strength from the true faith,/
O pride of Minya and boast of the church of St Mark,//
Intercede with Christ that our souls may be saved.
Kontakion (Tone 8, to the special melody ‘To thee the Champion Leader’)
O ye new-martyrs, faithful sons of the nation of the Cross,/
Ye denied not Christ to save your mortal lives,/
With your constancy ye earned the true crowns of life./
Ye are witnesses to us who venerate your sufferings/
That the Lord gives courage in the hour of trial,/
By your example we sing: //
O Lord Jesus, be our comfort and strength!