The Acts of Andrew and Matthias

in the City of the Cannibals!

No complete text exists or has been known since the IX century. What extant portions there are have been combined and reconstructed into several stories by Dennis R. MacDonald. The current text of the Acts of Andrew and Matthias is one of these stories.

At that time, all the apostles were gathered together at one place and divided the regions among themselves by casting lots, so that each would leave for his alloted share. The lot fell on Matthias to go to the city called Myrmidonia.
The people of that city ate no bread and drank no water, but ate human flesh and drank their blood. They would sieze all who came to their city, dig out their eyes, make them drink a drug prepared by sorcery and magic. When forced by them to drink the drug, the victims' hearts became muddled and their minds deranged. Out of their minds and taken to prison, they would eat hay like cattle or sheep.

So when Matthias entered the gate of the city Myrmidonia, the people of that city siezed him and gouged out his eyes. They made him drink the drug of their magical deceit, let him off to prison, and gave him grass to eat.
He ate nothing, for his heart was not muddled and his mind not deranged when he took their drug, but he prayed to God weeping, "Lord Jesus Christ, for whom we have forsaken everything to follow you, knowing that you help all who hope in you, pay attention and see what they have done to your servant Matthias, how they have nearly reduced me to the condition of beasts, for you know all. Therefore, if you have determined in my case that the lawless people of this city should devour me, I will not flee your arrangement. Restore to me, Lord, the light of my eyes, so that I can see what the lawless men o fthis city are undertaking against me. Do not abandon me, my Lord Jesus Christ, and do not hand me over to this bitter death."

As Matthias was praying, a light shone in the prison, and a voice came out of the light, saying, "Beloved Matthias, receive your sight." Immediately he received his sight. Again the voice came out saying, "Brace yourself, our Matthias, and do not be terrified, for I will never abandon you. I will rescue you from every danger, not only you but also your brothers and sisters who are with you, for I am with you every hour and always. But remain here twenty-seven days for the benefit of many souls, and then I will send Andrew to you who will lead you out of this prison, not only you but also all who are with you."
When the Savior had said these things, he again said to Matthias, "Peace be with you, our Matthias," and he returned to heaven. Seeing this, Matthias said to the Lord, "May your grace continue with me, my Lord Jesus." Then Matthias sat in the prison and sang.

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