Mar Kauma | Nov 15 – Prayed 45 years standing in shape of Crux (Cross)
Mar Kauma, a 5th century saint stands as a luminous star, in the heavenly abode of Saints and Prophets. His strenuous ways of life and consistency in faith for God has bought him the title ‘the angel of earth’. The word ‘Kauma’ means ‘standing in an erect position’. The holy angel of God meditated in the shape of a cross on a tree and hence got the name ‘Kauma’. He spent forty-five years of his life in solitude, having little food to sustain life.
Mar Kauma’s parents were poor but spiritual and staunch believers in God. They lived in a place named ‘Mecfrukth’ (Mayfarqin’). They were childless for a long period of time and were quite sad of this. They prayed without ends. One day they met a saintly monk, who said that they will be blessed by a son and a daughter. The Almighty blessed them with a son, who later became the solace for millions, the holy saint Mar Kauma.
Shemavoon was the name given to the child and his sister was named as Agastia. They were spoken of as supports for each other at every venture. When the children grew, they decided to dedicate their life for Christ. They left their home and parents later and lead a lonely life.
They had several hoarding places in their way. Everywhere they were protected by the arms of God through his messengers. Every experience they had gone through purified their life immensely and with the passage of years they became more and more saintly. The transformation of ‘Shemavoon’ to ‘Kauma’ and ‘Agastia’ to ‘Folog’ happended in these periods of time. Folog was asked to disguise herself as a male. Towards the end of Kauma’s life he got an assistant named ‘Yeshu’. She was a female dressed as a man, just like Folog.
Yeshu told them that in the mountains of Mecfrukth, there lived a saint named ‘Gabroono’. He lived in the top of a big tree. A stream was flowing near to the tree and it says that the angels of God made the stream for the holy saint. He spend fifty three years of his life in the tree, in intense fasting and prayers. The tree had three branches. Mar Kauma choose this place to spend the rest of his life. He stayed in the hut at the top of the tree and Agastia and Folog stayed at the bottom of the tree. Kauma became more glorious during this time. He was served by the angels of God. Nobody was allowed to enter into the hut.
After several years, one day Mar Kauma called Folog and Yeshu and said ‘my time has come. My body should be left in the hut until my bones are done with in the way God wants it to be”. The next time when they saw him they were surprised to find him in a tree in the shape of a crux. His body did not fall down. They praised the almighty for what they have seen and then the angel of the God appeared before them and revealed the truth that Mar Kauma was praying for the last forty-five years in the shape of crux. They also said that “God has given him to the people of the earth”. From the very day he blesses humanity in ways enormous through his prayers.
We have Churches dedicated to this holy saint at Enathu, Pathanamthitta; Kizhakkapuram, Adoor. The Orthodox Syrian Church commemorates Mar Kauma of November 14 and also on February 3.