Sunday, July 31, 2016

The Church Is Not What We Think It Is


By Archimandrite Vasilios of Iveron

The Church is not what we think it is. They took our babies from the breast of their mother, the Orthodox Church. They taught us other things. They gave us artificial milk to drink. They cut us off from our roots. They separated us from Tradition. They distanced us from our home. They made us foreigners in our own country. They set out to make us unlearn our native language, the language of Orthodoxy, the native language of humanity.

Saturday, July 30, 2016

The Prophet Elijah as the Patron of the Macedonian Dynasty

Emperor Basil I

By John Sanidopoulos

Though many Roman emperors had as patron saints those with either a royal or military background, Emperor Basil I (r. 867–886), the founder of the Macedonian Dynasty (867-1056), had as his prime patron the Prophet Elijah. This is because, according to many sources, the Prophet Elijah appeared to his widowed and impoverished mother in a dream when he was a boy, appearing as a tall old man with white beard from whose mouth a flame was burning, saying: "God will hand over the scepter of the Roman Empire to your beloved son Basil; you should persuade him to go to Constantinople." Upon reaching the city, Basil settled down to spend the night by the gates of the Monastery of Saint Diomedes. During the night, this Saint appeared to the Abbot in a dream and commanded him to invite the stranger in and give him everything he required, since he would one day be emperor.

After ascending the throne, Basil remembered his benefactors, founding and rebuilding churches in their honor, including the palatine Nea Ekklesia in Constantinople in May 880, which contained the sheepskin cloak of the Prophet Elijah as a revered relic. This church was dedicated to the Prophet Elijah, the Archangel Gabriel, Christ, the Theotokos and Saint Nicholas. He also reintroduced the feast of the Prophet Elijah to Constantinople, since before his reign the Prophet Elijah was not as venerated by Christians as he was after.

Friday, July 29, 2016

The Homes for the Elderly in Roman Constantinople


1. Home of Anthemios

It was originally the home of Anthemius, praetorian prefect of the eastern territory and grandfather of the emperor of the western Roman territory. He was assassinated in 472 BC. His mansions were turned into a home for the elderly and a church. It was located in the homonymous district in the western part of Constantinople, close to the cistern of Mokios on the seventh hill.

Saint Kallinikos the Martyr

St. Kallinikos the Martyr (Feast Day - July 29)

Verses

Kallinikos was thrown into the furnace,
Finding a good victory and divine crown.
On the twenty-ninth Kallinikos was devoured by the flames.

The Holy Martyr Kallinikos, a native of Cilicia, was raised from childhood in the Christian faith, and had the fear of God planted in his heart, and became for others a teacher of salvation.

Grieving that many misguided people worshiped soulless idols, he went through the cities and villages to proclaim Jesus Christ and His teachings to the pagans, thus converting many to Christianity and introducing them to the Creator of all.

Holy Martyr Theodoti and her Three Children

St. Theodoti and her Three Children (Feast Day - December 22 & July 29)

Verses

For December 22
Theodoti with her dearest are brought to the fire,
Boiling with love for God, even more than the fire.

For July 29
Theodoti was assigned with the name God-giver.
In the fire of the furnace together with her three beloved children.

The Martyr of Christ Theodoti was from Nicaea in Bithynia, and lived during the reign of Emperor Diocletian (284-304). She was raised a Christian and from a young age kept the commandments of the Lord. This she also instilled in her three children, despite being a young widow, educating them in the knowledge of God and the admonition of the Lord. When Theodoti came to learn of the good works of Saint Anastasia the Pharmakolytria (Dec. 22), she went with her three children to live with her.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

My Grandfather Vasili (+ July 28, 2016)


By John Sanidopoulos

At around 10:00 AM this morning, 28 July 2016, my maternal grandfather Vasilios Boustris passed away at the age of 86 from complications with lung cancer.

He was born in 1929 in the Peloponnesian village of Krestana, near Olympia. Orphaned of both his parents at the young age of 8, he and his older brother and two sisters lived in extreme poverty during the German occupation in Kalamata. After the German occupation came the Greek Civil War from 1946 to 1949, and he managed to survive by living in the mountains with members of the Greek Communist Party, and with other boys his age would search for and clear out land mines.

Synaxarion of Saint Irene Chrysovalantou


By Monk Gerasimos Mikragiannanitis

On the twenty-eighth of this month [July], we commemorate our Venerable Mother Irene, Abbess of the Sacred Monastery of Chrysovalantou, the Wonderworker.

Verses

Of old you lived peacefully Irene,
And now you dwell where peace abounds.
On the twenty-eighth Irene entered divine rest.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

When St. Panteleimon Appeared to St. Paisios the Athonite (The Athonite Skete of Saint Panteleimon)

Silver-covered Icon of St. Panteleimon at the Koutloumousion Skete of Saint Panteleimon (right)

In 1979, Elder Paisios moved from the Hermitage of the Honorable Cross to the Panagouda Cell of Koutloumousiou. It was June 3rd, and the Elder, because of the move, had not yet unpacked his liturgical books and did not know exactly the date or the celebrating saint. He performed the services with the prayer rope, and when he began to pray to the Saint of the day, his mind was busy trying to remember who the Saint was.

The Cypriot Monastery of Saint Panteleimon in Turkish Occupied Myrtou


The village of Myrtou in the province of Kyrenia is located 28 km southwest of the town of Kyrenia. The village was famous for the Monastery of Saint Panteleimon the Healer where every year on the 27th of July, it was visited by thousands of pilgrims from every corner of Cyprus. Until 1917 the Monastery was the seat of the Bishop of Kyrenia.

Holy New Martyr Christodoulos as a Model for our Lives


By Protopresbyter Fr. George Papavarnavas

The Neomartyr Christodoulos was born in a village of Kassandra in Halkidiki, called Valta. At a young age he went to Thessaloniki where he practiced the profession of a tailor. When he learned that a Christian was going to renounce his faith, and that it would take place in the public coffee house, where the "ceremony" of conversion would occur, and the renouncer would suffer circumcision, young Christodoulos, "boiling in the Spirit," that is he was burning with the uncreated fire of the Holy Spirit, took a Cross and went to that place where the tragic "performance" would take place. He courageously made the sign of the Cross over the crowd of Turks and Janissaries and went up to the one who was to change his faith. He showed him the Cross and spoke with him about the love of Christ, urging him even at the last moment to change his mind, recover, repent and make a confession of his faith. Full of hatred the Turks arrested and tortured Christodoulos. They pressed him to deny his faith, but he in turn urged them to deny their Islamic faith, and accept the true faith of Christ. This angered them even more, and after horrific torture they put him to death. They had him hanged in front of the Church of Saint Menas, and so the fearless lad of Christ received the unfading crown of martyrdom.

Synaxarion of Saint Panteleimon the Great Martyr and Unmercenary


On the twenty-seventh of this month [July], we commemorate the Holy Glorious Great Martyr and Healer Panteleimon.

Verses

Milk mixed with blood came from your skull, O Martyr,
For whom Christ shed the mixture with water.
On the twenty-seventh Panteleimon obtained his portion by the sword.

This Saint lived during the reign of Emperor Maximian (286-305), and was from the city of Nicomedia. He was the son of a Greek pagan named Eustorgius, while his mother came from a family of Christians, and her name was Euboula. He went on to learn the art of medicine for the body, from someone named Euphrosynos, who had great fame and glory, and appears to have reached the pinnacle of medicine. Meanwhile he learned the medicine of the soul according to Christ from Saint Hermolaos, a Priest of the Church in Nicomedia, and is commemorated on the twenty-sixth of this month. Through this medicine according to Christ, the Saint raised a child, who was bit by a viper and fell dead, merely by the Saint calling upon the name of Christ. He had been baptized by the aforementioned Saint Hermolaos, and was led by him to faith in Christ.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Saint Paraskevi, A Bedrock of Virtue (Homily by Metr. Augustounos Kantiotis)


St. Paraskevi was not an ordinary woman. She was a spiritual meteor, a bedrock of virtue, unshakable amid the ocean of corrupt society.

She implemented that which Christ said, that: “He who hears my words and keeps them resembles a house built upon the rock, and though the rains came and the winds and the rivers fell upon it, the house was not shaken” (Matt. 7:24-25.) And St. Paraskevi was a bedrock of virtue. Foamy waves fell upon her, the biggest waves of life.

The Holy Spring of Saint Paraskevi Outside Thessaloniki


A few kilometers outside of Thessaloniki, shortly before arriving at the Monastery of Saint John the Theologian in Souroti, is the village of Agia Paraskevi. It is a beautiful village built on a hill, with a fertile stretched out plain.

A true blessing of the village, besides the grave of Saint Paisios the Athonite, is the miraculous holy spring of Saint Paraskevi.

Synaxarion of Saint Paraskevi the Martyr


On the twenty-sixth of this month [July], we commemorate the Holy Venerable Martyr of Christ Paraskevi.

Verses

You prepared yourself for God as a pure temple,
Being led there, Revered One, for habitation.
On the twenty-sixth Paraskevi was beheaded with a sword.

Saint Paraskevi lived during the reign of Emperor Antoninus (138-161), was from a village in old Rome, and the daughter of Christian parents, whose names were Agathon and Politia. They were careful to keep the commandments of the Lord, and were childless, for which reason they supplicated the Lord without ceasing, in order to be given a child. God, who does the will of those who fear Him, granted them a female child, who they named in Holy Baptism Paraskevi, because she was born on the day of Paraskevi (Friday).

Monday, July 25, 2016

The Miraculous Icon of Saint Anna in Boeotia


In hilly Boeotia, specifically the village of Skourta, is the Convent of the Holy Ascension of the Lord. It is a relatively new Monastery, under the spiritual guidance of Elder Polykarpos. The Monastery was slowly and steadily built, and it is a living ecclesiastical artwork revealing the passion and love of its founders. It is truly a gem of Orthodoxy and of the monastic community.

Among the important treasures of the Monastery, besides relics of St. John the Russian and Saint David of Evia, is the miraculous icon of Saint Anna, which is located in the Church or Catacomb of Saint John the Forerunner, beneath the Church of the Ascension.

As befits a miraculous icon, its history is wondrous.

The Village of Agia Anna in Evia


Agia Anna is a seaside village dating to 1776 in the northern part of Evia (Euboea), Greece which boasts one of the longest beaches in Europe (7 km). According to legend, the name Agia Anna (Saint Anna) derives from a miracle related to an icon of Saint Anna. Around the 18th century, the villagers there survived after a pirate attack. After that, they found a miraculous icon of Saint Anna which they were led to by a woman's vision, and later built a church dedicated to the patron saint of their village to house the icon.

Synaxarion of Saint Olympia the Deaconess


On the twenty-fifth of this month [July], we commemorate the Venerable and Blessed Olympia the Deaconess.

Verses

Olympia was attacked by her beloved homeland,
Now she runs rejoicing to her homeland above.

Olympia flourished during the reign of Theodosius the Great (379-395) and Arcadius (395-408) his son. She was the daughter of Secundus the count, the granddaughter of Eulalios the eparch, and the bride for a short time of Nebridius the son of an eparch, but did not become his wife.

Synaxarion for the Dormition of Saint Anna


On the twenty-fifth of this month [July], we commemorate the Dormition of Saint Anna, the Mother of our Most Holy Lady the Theotokos.

Verses

You came to an end O Mother of the Virgin Mother Lady,
Having conceived the mother of salvation.
On the twenty-fifth Anna who helps those in childbirth died.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Synaxarion of Saint Christina the Great Martyr


On the twenty-fourth of this month [July], we commemorate the Holy Great Martyr Christina.

Verses

Your Christina was killed by a spear O Christ,
Having not denied the faith of Christians.
On the twenty-fourth a sharp spear was cast at Christina.

+ + +

Christ the bridegroom united with Christina,
A pure bride, by the blood of her martyrdom.
On the twenty-fourth a sharp spear was cast at Christina.

Holy New Martyr Athanasios of Kios (+ 1670)

St. Athanasios of Kios (Feast Day - July 24)

Verses

Blessed Athanasios gave and received,
He gave his head and received immortality.

Athanasios was from the village of Kios in Bithynia of Asia Minor, and was also a wealthy and pious married man with children. He held the position of demogeron in his village, which means he was one of a small group of men elected by the Orthodox Christian community to represent them before the Muslim authorities to serve their needs. For example, he often protested on behalf of his fellow Orthodox Christians against unjust taxes levied upon them by their Ottoman overlords. His outspokenness in this regard was not appreciated by his Muslim neighbors, therefore they retaliated with the allegation that Athanasios had expressed a desire to convert to Islam.

Saint Athenagoras the Athenian and Apologist

St. Athenagoras of Athens (Feast Day - July 24)

Athenagoras was born about the year 133 and died in 190. Little is known of his life. In his writings he styles himself as "Athenagoras, the Athenian, Philosopher, and Christian". The quality of his writings show that he was well educated, familiar with Platonism and Stoicism, and may have been well known and influential. Only two of his works, his Apology or Embassy for the Christians and Treatise on the Resurrection, have come down to us. The absence of any mention of his writings among other Christian writers may have been due to his anonymous writings having been thought to be the work of other writers. The manuscript that preserved his writings dates to 914 A.D. Today he is noted as one of the ablest Christian apologists of the second century.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Synaxarion of the Holy Prophet Ezekiel


On the twenty-third of this month [July], we commemorate the Holy Prophet Ezekiel.

Verses

Ezekiel spoke heavenly things to the Hebrews,
"Adonai sees you," says the Lord.

He was the son of Buzi, from the land of Anathoth* which was inhabited by priests, and he prophesied for twenty years, which was around six hundred years before the coming of Christ.**

Homily on the Vision of the Prophet Ezekiel (St. Makarios of Egypt)


HOMILY 1

An Allegorical Explication of the Vision Described in the Prophet Ezekiel

By St. Makarios of Egypt

1. The blessed prophet Ezekiel having seen a vision from God, full of glory, made a relation of it, and committed it to writing; a vision full of mysteries, surpassing utterance. For he saw in a plain the chariot of the cherubim, four spiritual living creatures; each of which had four distinct faces: one the face of a lion, another that of an eagle, the third of an ox, and the last the face of a man. To every face there were wings, so that there were no hinder parts to any of them, nor any thing behind at all. Their necks were full of eyes, and their bellies in like manner were thick set with eyes; neither was there any one part about them at all free from eyes. There were also wheels to every face, a wheel within a wheel. And the Spirit was in the wheels. And he saw as it were the likeness of a man, and under his feet as it were a work of sapphire. And the chariot bore the cherubim, and the living creatures the Lord that sat upon them. Whithersoever they would go, it was straight-forward. And he saw under each cherub as it were the hand of a man supporting and carrying.

Prophet Ezekiel Resource Page

Holy Prophet Ezekiel (Feast Day - Slav. July 21; Gr. July 23)

About

Synaxarion of the Holy Prophet Ezekiel

The Holy Prophet Ezekiel

The Grand Prophetic Ministry of the Prophet Ezekiel

Holy Prophet Ezekiel as a Model for our Lives

Friday, July 22, 2016

5 Amazing Contemporary Miracles of Saint Markella of Chios


A) A man by the name of John K. wrote a letter to the Metropolitan of Chios relating the following miracle. His daughter was born at the end of June, one day before his marriage anniversary. Some months before, while either completely asleep or half asleep, a woman spoke to him, saying: "Saint Markella, Saint Markella" over and over again. During this time they were considering what to name their child at Baptism. He then understood in a mysterious way this name was revealed for the child. Though not wishing to jump to conclusions, he prayed to God for a sign if this was truly His will. 

Synaxarion of Saint Mary Magdalene


Synaxarion

On the twenty-second of this month [July], we commemorate the Holy Myrrhbearer and Equal of the Apostles, Mary Magdalene.

Verses

With touches immaterial she touches you my Christ,
To whom you said, ‘Touch me not, O Mary.’
On the twenty-second Mary Magdalene slept.

She was from Magdala, which is in the regions of Syria. When she approached Christ, she followed Him, and because she was troubled by seven demons, she was delivered from them by the grace of Christ. Therefore she followed Christ and served Him until His Passion and Crucifixion, and became a Myrrhbearer and preacher of the gospel, and was first among the Myrrhbearers who saw the Risen Christ, along with the other Mary, namely our Lady the Theotokos.*

Saint Mary Magdalene Resource Page

St. Mary Magdalene (Feast Day - July 22)

Synaxarion of Saint Mary Magdalene

Who Really Was Mary Magdalene?

The Seven Demons of Mary Magdalene

The Three Visits of Mary Magdalene to the Tomb of Christ

Saint Markella of Chios Resource Page

St. Markella of Chios (Feast Day - July 22)

The Life and Martyrdom of Saint Markella of Chios

St. Markella of Chios According to St. Nikodemos the Hagiorite

The Truth About St. Markella of Chios

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Rare Video Showing an Embrace Between Saint Paisios and Patriarch Bartholomew


Exactly one year after becoming Ecumenical Patriarch on 2 November 1991, Bartholomew I visited Mount Athos. On 7 November 1992 he was received by the Holy Monastery of Koutloumouseiou.

The video below captures the moment when during the Doxological reception at Koutloumouseiou, Saint Paisios the Athonite came forward to receive the blessing of His All-Holiness. And although Saint Paisios was a simple monk without clerical rank, the Patriarch, out of his reverence for the Elder, gave him the kiss of peace.

The Prophet Elijah's Church in Koufonissia


In the area of Profiti Ilia (named after the Prophet Elijah or Elias) at Koufonissia in the Cyclades of Greece, there are traces of an early Roman Orthodox church.

In the early 1940s the inhabitants raised money to restore the church, but the sum was not sufficient and two local people undertook to take the money to the Dodecanese to invest so that the necessary funds were collected. However, they vanished without trace and this was considered a bad omen for the reconstruction of the church.

Synaxarion of Saints Symeon the Fool for Christ and John of Emessa


On the twenty-first of this month [July], we commemorate our Holy Fathers Symeon the Fool for Christ and John.

Verses

To Symeon
In life you played one who was stupid, Father,
Your end utterly escaping the notice of the sensible serpent.

To John
You seized the desert, O John, blessed one,
In solitude laboring the passions of the flesh.

Feigning non-sensibility the sensible Symeon died on the twenty-first.

Saint Manuel II Palaiologos, Emperor of the Romans (+ 1425)

Saint Manuel II Palaiologos (Feast Day - July 21)

Manuel Palaiologos, the third to last Roman Emperor, was born on 27 June 1350, and was the second son of Emperor John V Palaiologos and his wife Helena Kantakouzene. His maternal grandparents were Emperor John VI Kantakouzenos (1347–1354) and Irene Asanina.

Granted the title of despot─ôs by his father, the future Manuel II traveled west to seek support for the Roman Empire in 1365 and in 1370, serving as governor in Thessalonica from 1369. The failed attempt at usurpation by his older brother Andronikos IV Palaiologos in 1373 led to Manuel's being proclaimed heir and co-emperor of his father. In 1376–1379 and again in 1390 they were supplanted by Andronikos IV and then his son John VII, but Manuel personally defeated his nephew with help from the Republic of Venice in 1390. Although John V had been restored, Manuel was forced to go as an honorary hostage to the court of the Ottoman Sultan Bayezid I at Prousa (Bursa). During his stay, Manuel was forced to participate in the Ottoman campaign that reduced Philadelphia, the last Roman enclave in Anatolia.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Greek Folk Traditions and the Prophet Elias


By John Sanidopoulos

The Prophet Elias (the Greek rendering of Elijah) is honored by the Orthodox Church on July 20th. Along with this festival many traditions and customs have become associated with his name, not only in Slavic lands, Bulgaria and Serbia, but especially in Greece, with its hundreds of monasteries, churches, chapels and shrines dedicated to him, particularly on mountaintops and high places.

In many regions of Greece, especially Thrace and Macedonia, the Prophet Elias is considered the overseer of rain, thunder, lightning, and the wind. This likely comes from the Old Testament, where it says that Elias prevented rain from falling on the land of Israel in his days by the word of his mouth for three years, at which time again by his word he was able to make it rain and relieve the land of its drought. Folklore says that lightning and thunder are his weapons and he unleashes them as he chases the devil, or variously, the dragon, across the heavens in his chariot, and he also prevents insects from destroying crops. It is perhaps this reason why the Prophet Elias has almost a monopoly on churches closest to the heavens.

What Saint Paisios the Athonite Said About the Prophet Elijah


- Elder, I am jealous of a fellow sister nun.

- I know which sister you are jealous of, but I learned that she also is jealous of you! I pray both of you become jealous of the zealous Elijah, and that he will cast jealousy away from both of you, and give you his own divine zeal. Amen.

Synaxarion of the Holy Prophet Elijah the Tishbite


On the twentieth of this month [July], we commemorate the fiery ascent to Heaven of the Holy and Glorious Elijah (Elias) the Tishbite.

Verses

He shut off the rain, thrice bringing fire below,
Parting the river, Elias was carried off above.
On the twentieth you were taken up, Elias, by chariot.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

The Ecclesiology of the Holy and Great Synod


By Bishop Christopher of Karpasia

Before and after the convergence of the Holy and Great Synod there were expressed many different complaints and objections regarding whether the text "Relations of the Orthodox Church with the Rest of the Christian World" corresponds with the ecclesiology of the Orthodox Church.

On this question I would like to offer some initial theological thoughts, reserving to later, God willing, present something more comprehensive and integrated.

Synaxarion of Saint Macrina, the Sister of Basil the Great


On the nineteenth of this month [July], we commemorate our Venerable Mother Macrina,
sister of Basil the Great.

Verses

Little by little Macrina distanced herself,
From the world and approached the Lord.

+ + +

Sisterly-minded to your brethren, O Macrina,
You dwell with them on high fraternally also.
On the nineteenth Angels took Macrina hence.

Saint Dios the Wonderworker of Antioch

St. Dios the Wonderworker (Feast Day - July 19)

Verses

You tasted death also, all-blessed Dios,
Glorious of name, but more so in your works.
On the nineteenth the renowned Dios died.

Venerable Dios was born in the city of Antioch in Syria towards the end of the fourth century into a pious Christian family. From the years of his youth he was noted for his temperance, he took food in small quantity and not each day, and his flesh was humbled by vigil and incessant prayer. For these deeds the Lord granted Dios dispassion and the gift of wonderworking.

Monday, July 18, 2016

The Relics of Saint Marina (photos)


Saint Marina is one of the most beloved saints not only in the East but also in the West, where she is called Margaret. Below is a list of some of the relics of Saint Marina in Greece and elsewhere with photos.

It should be noted that some relics may be listed a number of times, for example Saint Marina's right hand. It may appear that there are multiple right hands listed, but in reality most of these are only portions of the right hand and arm that have been distributed to various places. Of course, we should not neglect the fact that in the Medieval West, relics were given false names of popular saints, and even in the East sometimes a lesser known saint relic was ascribed to a more popular one. The reason for this is because the right hand of Saint Marina was used to strike the devil with a hammer.

Life and Sayings of Holy Abba Pambo of Nitria (+ 393)

St. Pambo of Nitria (Feast Day - July 18)

Verses

Pambo crucified himself in life,
And he stands at your side O crucified Savior.

From the Coptic Life

There appeared in the monastic community of Nitria a certain person named Abba Pambo. He was second after Abba Antony. Abba Pambo was thus called alethenos (“the true one”) concerning whose virtues the whole brotherhood testified. I myself did not meet him in my time there, but the brothers spoke with me about him, saying that that man never said a lie nor ever commited a sin with his tongue from the time that he became a monk; neither oath nor curse ever came from his mouth, nor did he ever speak an unnecessary word. He had a wife and two sons, but they themselves did not agree to become monastics.

Saint John IX the Hieromnemon, Patriarch of Constantinople (+ 1134)


John IX the Agapetos or Hieromnemon was Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople between 1111 and 1134. John's first nickname Agapetos is translated as "Beloved", while the latter nickname is because before his election to the Patriarchal throne he held the office of Hieromnemon[1] within the Patriarchate. He was the nephew of a prominent Metropolitan of Chalcedon.

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Synaxarion of Saint Marina the Martyr


On the seventeenth of this month [July], we commemorate the Holy and Gloriously Triumphant Martyr Marina.

Verses

By the hand of the executioner you were beheaded Marina with the sword,
By the hand of the Lord you are crowned with divine grace.
On the seventeenth Marina was beheaded.


+ + +

Who can fittingly speak of you Marina,
For your red blood was shed by the sword.
On the seventeenth Marina was killed with a sharp sword.

Saint Marina was from a village of Pisidia, and the only-begotten daughter of Aidesios, a priest of the idols, who flourished during the reign of Emperor Claudius II (268-270). When she was twelve years old, her mother died. The Saint was then given by her father into the charge of a woman, and she pleaded with God to make her worthy of the Christian faith, which was being taught by certain Christians of the village.

Saturday, July 16, 2016

"Neurotic" Orthodoxy in America


By Fr. Alexander Schmemann

Today's Orthodox young people do not have that immigrant mentality. Orthodoxy for them is not primarily the remembrance of childhood abroad. They will not keep Orthodoxy simply because it is "the faith of their fathers." Suppose we apply this principle to others: Then the Lutherans should keep the Lutheran faith, the Jews the Jewish faith, and finally, the son of an atheist should keep atheism because it was the "faith of his father." If this is the criterion, religion becomes a mere cultural continuity.

Holy Virgin Martyr Julia of Carthage

St. Julia of Carthage

By St. Nikolai Velimirovich

Julia was born in Carthage of distinguished lineage. When the Persians captured Carthage many people were taken into slavery. Saint Julia was captured, enslaved and fell into the hands of a merchant in Syria. That merchant was a pagan. Seeing that Julia was a Christian, he counseled her on many occasions to deny Christ and become one in faith with him, but Julia could never agree to this. Since Julia was faithful and trustworthy in service, the merchant left her in peace and did not speak to her about faith again.

Holy Martyr Antiochos the Physician of Sebastea

St. Antiochos the Martyr (Feast Day - July 16)

Verses

You looked towards the Master who sees all things,
Enduring Antiochos even beheading.

The Holy Martyr Antiochos, a native of Cappadocian Sebastea, was the brother of the Holy Martyr Platon (Nov. 18), and he was a physician by trade who treated and healed the sick, both physically as well as spiritually. While in Galatia attending to the sick, the pagans learned that he was a Christian, and they brought him to trial before Governor Adrian, who subjected him to fierce tortures.

Friday, July 15, 2016

Saint Nikodemos the Hagiorite (1749-1809)


By Monk Moses the Athonite

Saint Nikodemos the Hagiorite is one of the greatest theological and instructive figures of the Turkish occupation. His works elevated the morals of monastics and all the faithful by making known the wisdom of the holy fathers, the fragrance of hagiography and the grace of hymnography. Rightly is he the boast of the Holy Mountain and the glory of the Orthodox Church.

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Saint Nikodemos the Hagiorite Resource Page

St. Nikodemos the Hagiorite (Feast Day - July 14)


About

Saint Nikodemos the Hagiorite (1749-1809)

Saint Nikodemos the Hagiorite, the Perennial Teacher of our Orthodox Faith

Saint Nikodemos the Hagiorite as a Model for our Lives

St. Nikodemos the Hagiorite: The Model of Genuine Greek Orthodox Spirituality

The "Kollyvades" Fathers of the Holy Mountain


Shrines and Relics

The Cell of St. Nikodemos the Hagiorite In Kapsala

The Inkpot of St. Nikodemos the Hagiorite

The Church of St. Nikodemos the Hagiorite in Karyes

Relic of St. Nikodemos the Hagiorite Stolen

Relic of St. Nikodemos Miraculously Returned

A Second Resurrection at the Monastery of St. Nikodemos in Goumenissa

3rd Anniversary of the Miraculous Return of the Relic of St. Nikodemos the Hagiorite


About His Writings

"The Philokalia": A Challenge To Western Culture

Approaching the Panagia on a Daily Basis According to Saint Paisios

The Theotokos as a Teacher of Asceticism and Noetic Prayer

The Three Ways the Theotokos Magnified the Lord

The Apostle Peter and the Noetic Mount Tabor

Adaptations of Roman Catholic Texts for Orthodox Readers by St. Nikodemos the Hagiorite


Writings

Why Jesus Came Into the World

St. Nikodemos Explains How We Came to Celebrate Christmas on December 25th

Following in the Footsteps of Christ Who Suffered For You

St. Nikodemos the Hagiorite on Inappropriate Ways To Celebrate Pascha

We Ought To Rejoice in the Resurrection Joy of the Theotokos

The House of Lazarus (Christocentric Experiences of a Hermit)

Meditation On Pentecost (1 of 3)

Meditation On Pentecost (2 of 3)

Meditation On Pentecost (3 of 3)

The Six Apostolic Synods Mentioned in the Book of Acts

The Most Beneficial Tale of the Holy Martyr Meirax

The Beneficial Tale of Metrios the Farmer

An Apologia For the Exile of St. Athanasius By Constantine the Great

The Blasphemous Doctrines of Origen

St. Nikodemos on the Prophecies of St. Andrew the Fool for Christ

St. Markella of Chios According to St. Nikodemos the Hagiorite

St. Nikodemos the Hagiorite On Vampirism

The Prerogatives of Sunday, the Lord's Day

Who Can Receive Holy Communion Every Sunday?

What are the Criteria for an Ecumenical Synod?

Should Icons Be Blessed or Anointed?

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Saint Onesiphoros the Wonderworker, Ascetic of Anarita in Paphos, Cyprus

St. Onesiphoros the Wonderworker (Feast Day - July 13)

When Saint Onesiphoros was born and lived is unfortunately unknown to us. We do known he was born in the Queen of all cities, Constantinople. His parents were pious, virtuous and wealthy, and were given many honors and offices by the emperors of the time. Despite such a distinct lifestyle, they remained faithful and humble till the end.

Onesiphoros was brought up in the palace, where he was given the opportunity to be educated to the knowledge of Law, and his special study was that of military seamanship. The emperor, seeing his wisdom and skill, made him Augustalis, that is, the Navarch of the imperial fleet. Onesiphoros built new naval units, repaired old warships, took care for the military exercises, and increased the militancy of the Royal Navy.

The Heliophotoi Saints, Who Lived as Hermits on Mount Kononi of Achera

The Heliophotoi Saints (Feast Day - July 13)

In the vicinity of the now abandoned Turkish-Cypriot village of Agioi Heliophotoi (or Agioi Iliofotoi), the small Chapel of the Heliophotoi Saints (also known as Aliphotes) can be found. Administratively, as with all the region, it belongs to the village of Kato Moni.

The names of the Heliophotoi Saints according to the way they are written on their icons are as follows: Epaphroditos, Ammonios, Houlelaios, Ephsthenios and Heliophotos. Heliophotos was their leader, who was also a priest and their spiritual father, and he is presented in the icons blessing and holding the Gospel. It is from him that the rest of the Saints took their name from and are known as Heliophotoi (plural for Heliophotos) among the people of Cyprus. Ephsthenios and Houlelaios were shepherds, which is why these two are presented holding shepherd's sticks, and the others helped them in the milking.

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Saint Veronica the Bleeder

St. Veronica the Bleeder (Feast Day - July 12)

Verses

You entirely perceived at that moment O Word,
The grasping of your hem before it was grasped.

The woman with the issue of blood that was healed by the Lord and is recorded in the Gospels, has by tradition (Acts of Pilate) come to be known as Veronica the Haimorrhousa (Bleeder). Though many medieval traditions surround her life (such as Veronica's Veil), what we know from ancient sources are the following.

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