Thursday, August 17, 2017

Images of Christ Not Made With Hands Resource Page

Traditional Images of Christ Not Made With Hands

1. Holy Mandylion of Edessa (Feast Day - August 16)

Synaxarion for the Holy Mandylion and Holy Keramion of Edessa

The Apostolic Tradition of the Holy Mandylion

A Tenth Century Icon of the Holy Mandylion from Sinai

Holy Martyrs Straton, Philip, Eutychianos and Cyprian of Nicomedia

Sts. Straton, Philip, Eutychianos and Cyprian (Feast Day - August 17)


To Straton.
"They reckoned me an abomination," said Straton,
"Men who are abominable, and they killed me in fire."

To Philip.
Friend of God, Philip, and full of soul,
Was condemned to the fire, not becoming fainthearted.

To Eutychianos.
Eutychianos was bound in the furnace,
Like a horse is bound, in words.

To Cyprian.
Cyprian was steadfast in the fire of the furnace,
Flee the outer fire, Scripture says.

Holy Martyrs Paul and Juliana of Ptolemais

Sts. Paul and Juliana (Feast Days - March 4 & August 17)


For March 4th.

To Paul and Juliana.
The reposed Paul, and the reposed
Juliana, were beheaded as siblings.

To Kodratos, Akakios and Stratonikos.
Three spilled as much blood as water,
Wise blood, was shed for you by the sword O Christ.

For August 17th.

Juliana, Paul, siblings by nature,
Were also seen to be siblings by the sword.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Saint Timothy the Bishop of Euripos and Founder of Penteli Monastery (+ 1590)

St. Timothy the Bishop of Euripos (Feast Day - August 16)

Our Holy Father Timothy was born in 1510 at Kalamos of Attica, and according to tradition his father was an educated priest who passed on this education to his son. At a young age he had a spiritual relationship with the Bishop of Orion in Evia, who saw his deep faith and rare spiritual gifts, and thus sponsored him to study in Athens. Having completed his studies, Timothy returned to his spiritual father in Orion, who tonsured him a monk, then ordained him a deacon and a presbyter. In 1553 the Bishop of Orion reposed and Timothy was elected to replace him. Then in 1555 he was elevated to become Metropolitan of Euripos, which was centered in Chalkida.

The Cave of St. Gerasimos the New Ascetic in Zakynthos

St. Gerasimos the New Ascetic was born in Trikala of Corinth to the renowned aristrocratic Notaras family. Before St. Gerasimos went on to live an ascetic life on the island of Kefallonia, he lived in his forties for five years as an ascetic in a secluded cave on the island of Zakynthos. There he ate only greens with neither bread or salt, and legumes soaked in water. His main form of sustenance however was prayer, vigils, the constant remembrance of God, and the study of Holy Scripture.

Saint Gerasimos of Kefallonia Resource Page

St. Gerasimos the New Ascetic of Kefallonia (Feast Day - October 20 & August 16)


Gerasimos gained a beautiful crown,
At the right hand of the Lord above.

Saint Gerasimos the New Ascetic of Kefallonia (+ 1579)

The Cave of St. Gerasimos of Kefallonia on Mount Athos

The Cave of St. Gerasimos the New Ascetic in Zakynthos

The Well of Saint Gerasimos the New of Kefallonia

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

History of the Feast of the Dormition of the Theotokos

By John Sanidopoulos

The origin of the feast of the Dormition of the Theotokos is closely connected with her public veneration in the early fourth century, when Christmas began to be celebrated in Rome, and peaked at the Third Ecumenical Synod of Ephesus in 431, when controversy arose over the title "Theotokos". A few years later, in the Armenian Lectionary of 434, which preserves the ancient liturgical practices of the Jerusalem Church between 417 and 439, it says that a feast of Mary the Theotokos was celebrated on August 15th, "at the second mile from Bethlehem," with Scripture readings that focused on the Nativity of Christ and the Mary as the Mother of God. In Egypt, this same feast was celebrated on January 18th under the influence of the Holy Patriarch Cyril of Alexandria (+ 444), who presided over the Third Ecumenical Synod. In Constantinople, the veneration of the Theotokos was promoted by Holy Patriarch Anatolios (+ 458), who also composed the first liturgical hymns to the Theotokos.

What Humanity Gained Through the Dormition of the Theotokos

1. Until yesterday, I have preached to the Gentiles that you have given birth to God in the flesh; from now on, I shall also teach that you have been allowed to pass over into His presence, so that the Gentiles may realize that their own salvation is confirmed by your intercession, so that they, too, might have a permanent patron before God.

- St. Germanos of Constantinople, Third Homily on the Dormition

An Interpretation of the Icon of the Dormition of the Theotokos

The holy icon of the Dormition of the Theotokos is a densely populated one. However, two characters stand out in this portrayal: Christ and His Holy Mother. We can see Jesus, with His regal stature, holding in His hands the Theotokos' soul depicted as a swaddled infant, and the gaunt figure of the deceased Holy Mother.

Monday, August 14, 2017

Homily on the Dormition of the Theotokos (Metr. Augoustinos Kantiotis)

By Metropolitan Augoustinos (Kantiotis) of Florina

Delivered on a Sunday, the day before the 15th of August, prior to 1967, at a vigil in Athens.

The Most-Holy Theotokos is she who is hymned by the generations of generations. It is she who was praised by Gregory Palamas, one of the greatest of the hymnists of the Most-Holy Theotokos. The Most-Holy Theotokos is the golden link between the visible and invisible creation. It is she who is the bridge which unites earth with the things of heaven. It is she who is the "throne touched by the sun", she is "more pure than the radiance of the sun". It is she through whom "the Word became flesh and dwelt among us" (John 1:14). Only angelic tongues could hymn the grandeur of the Most-Holy Theotokos.

How to Go Through Life and Never Have an Enemy

"Love those who hate you, and you shall not have an enemy."

- The Didache of the Twelve Apostles

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Some Teachings of Elder Joseph the Hesychast about the Mother of God

By Elder Joseph the Hesychast

- Our Panagia hastens everywhere. She bestows her grace abundantly upon anyone who fervently cries out to her. She is a mediatress to Christ for everyone, because she was deemed worthy to give birth to the Lord and to become the Mother of God. She carries Him in her arms and continuously entreats Him. Since we sinners do not have the boldness to run directly to God from the start, we cry out to His Mother. She regenerates us; she intercedes; she anticipates all our afflictions. She is our protectress and helper, more honorable than all the angels, beyond compare more glorious than the Cherubim and Seraphim, second in rank only to the Holy Trinity. Oh, but she is so good, so sweet, that you want to embrace her at every moment and obtain consoling grace. The more you love, the more you are loved.

Saint Dositheos the Submissive, Disciple of Abba Dorotheos

St. Dositheos the Submissive (Feast Day - August 13)

Some of the Instructions on spiritual life of the holy Abba Dorotheos of Gaza (Aug. 13) are to be found in the Philokalia. A marvelous fruit of these Instructions may be seen in the life of the disciple of Abba Dorotheos, St. Dositheos. The account that follows, included as a part of the Russian edition of the writings of Abba Dorotheos, is by an anonymous writer apparently contemporary with the two saints, and is an inseparable part of the life of the great Abba himself.


You were seen as a model of submission,
Dositheos the boast of the obedient.

Gospel Commentary for the Tenth Sunday after Pentecost (St. Theophylact of Ochrid)

Tenth Sunday after Pentecost (or Tenth Sunday of Matthew)
The Healing of the Lunatic

Matthew 17:14-23

From The Explanation of the Gospel of St. Matthew

By Blessed Theophylact, Archbishop of Ochrid and Bulgaria

14-15. And when they were come to the multitude, there came to Him a certain man, kneeling down to Him, and saying, "Lord, have mercy on my son, for he is lunatic, and sore vexed; for ofttimes he falleth into the fire, and oft into the water.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

History of the Feast of the Transfiguration

Apse mosaic of the Transfiguration at Saint Katherine's Monastery on Mount Sinai

By John Sanidopoulos

The celebration of the miracle of the Transfiguration of Christ by the Church dates to after the fourth century, since it is not mentioned either in the Apostolic Constitutions or the Pilgrimage of Egeria, nor any other document before this time. It seems that the initiation of the feast of the Transfiguration became associated with the location of where it happened. Though all three Synoptic Gospels mention the miracle of the Transfiguration, nowhere in the New Testament does it say where it took place, except that it happened on a "high mountain". It was later Christian tradition that identified this mountain to be Mount Tabor.

Holy Abba Palamon, Spiritual Father of Saint Pachomios the Great

St. Palamon the Anchorite (Feast Day - August 12)


Palamon gave his soul into the hands of God,
And was not taken by the hands of the soul-destroyer.

Abba Palamon was fervent in his asceticism and worship. He persevered, all the days of his life, in daily and nightly prayers, and watching all night in ascetic worship. Saint Pachomios, the father of monastic communal life, otherwise known as cenobitic monasticism, was the disciple of this Saint. When Pachomios rejected paganism and adopted Christianity, he wished to live a life of asceticism and worship, so the priest of his hometown directed him to go to the great hermit Abba Palamon. Pachomios handed the care for the poor and the needy in his town to another elder monk, and went to Abba Palamon. When he arrived, he knocked on the door of his cell. The old man looked from an aperture and asked him, "Who are you O brother? And what do you want?" Pachomios answered hastily, "I, O blessed father, am looking for Christ God Whom you do worship, and I beg your fatherhood to accept me and to make me a monk." Abba Palamon told him, "O my son, monasticism is not an unrestricted labor, and a man does not come into it as he pleases, for many had adopted it not knowing its hardships, and when they adopted it they could not endure it, and you have heard about it without knowing its contention."

Friday, August 11, 2017

Saint Passarion of Palestine (+ 428)

St. Passarion of Palestine (Feast Day - August 11)


Passarion bore every virtue,
Distanced from the earth he received every form of recompense.

Saint Passarion was an important figure in the early history of Palestinian monasticism. In the Account of the Death of Theodosios and Romanos by John Rufus, we read that he was a disciple of Saint Romanos, who had established a monastery fifteen miles south of Jerusalem which composed of 600 monks. Cyril of Scythopolis in the Life of Euthymios calls him "the holy Passarion, then rural bishop and archimandrite of the monks." A rural bishop, or "chorepiscopos", was appointed to assist the bishop of a large or prominent diocese in his duties, while an archimandrite is one who oversaw a large monastery or group of monasteries. It appears therefore that Passarion inherited the spiritual gifts and holiness of his spiritual father Romanos and became himself a leader of early Palestinian monasticism.

Holy Venerable Martyrs Theodore and Basil of the Kiev Caves

Sts. Basil and Theodore of the Kiev Caves (Feast Day - August 11)

The Venerable Martyrs Theodore and Basil of the Kiev Caves Lavra pursued asceticism in the eleventh century in the Near Caves of Kiev. Saint Theodore distributed his riches to the poor, went to the monastery and settled into the Varangian Cave, adjoining the Caves of Saint Theodosius. He dwelt here many years in strict temperance.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Why We Fast for the Dormition of the Theotokos (St. Symeon of Thessaloniki)

By St. Symeon of Thessaloniki

The fast in August was established in honor of the Mother of God the Word; who, foreknowing her repose, ascetically labored and fasted for us as always, although she was holy and immaculate, and had no need for fasting. Thus, she especially prayed for us in preparation for being transported from this life to the future life, when her blessed soul would be united through the Divine Spirit with her Son. Therefore, we also should fast and praise her, emulating her life, urging her thereby to pray for us. Some, by the way, say that this fast was instituted on the occasion of two feasts — the Transfiguration and the Dormition. I also consider it necessary to remember these two feasts — one which gives us light, and the other which is merciful to us and intercedes for us.

Saint Lawrence of Rome Resource Page

St. Lawrence of Rome (Feast Day - August 10)


Lawrence like a sea bass of Christ,
Is thoroughly baked over the bed of coals.

Saint Lawrence of Rome as a Model Deacon (St. Ambrose of Milan)

By St. Ambrose of Milan

(On the Duties of the Clergy)

Book 1, Chapter 41:

And let us not pass by St. Lawrence, who, seeing Sixtus his bishop led to martyrdom, began to weep, not at his sufferings but at the fact that he himself was to remain behind. With these words he began to address him: "Where, father, are you going without your son? Where, holy priest, are you hastening without your deacon? Never were you wont to offer sacrifice without an attendant. What are you displeased at in me, my father? Have you found me unworthy? Prove, then, whether you have chosen a fitting servant. To him to whom you have entrusted the consecration of the Savior's blood, to whom you have granted fellowship in partaking of the Sacraments, to him do you refuse a part in your death? Beware lest your good judgment be endangered, while your fortitude receives its praise. The rejection of a pupil is the loss of the teacher; or how is it that noble and illustrious men gain the victory in the contests of their scholars rather than in their own? Abraham offered his son, Peter sent Stephen on before him! Father, show forth your courage in your son. Offer me whom you have trained, that you, confident in your choice of me, may reach the crown in worthy company."

4 Miracles of Saint Lawrence of Rome

1. The Garrulous Nun

St. Gregory the Great, in his Dialogues (Bk. 4, Ch. 51), writes:

"Felix, Bishop of Portua, a man of holy life, who was born and brought up in the province of Sabina, saith that there lived in that place a certain nun, which, though she were chaste of her body, yet had she an ungracious and foolish tongue. Having departed this life, she was buried in the church, the keeper whereof, the night following, saw her by revelation brought before the holy altar, where she was cut in two pieces, and the one half was burnt in the fire, and the other was not touched at all. Rising up in the morning, he told others what a strange vision he had seen, and showed them the very place in which she was burnt, the marble whereof appeared with the very marks and signs of a fire upon it, as though that woman had been there burnt in very deed with corporal fire. By which we may plainly see, that such as have not their sins pardoned, can reap small benefit by having their bodies after death buried in holy places."

Saint Lawrence the Fool for Christ and Wonderworker of Kaluga (+ 1515)

St. Lavrenty of Kaluga (Feast Day - August 10)

Saint Lawrence (Lavrenty) the Fool for Christ and Wonderworker of Kaluga, lived in the beginning of the sixteenth century at the distance of half a verst from old Kaluga near a forest church in honor of the Nativity of Christ, set upon a high hill.

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

The Finding of the Acheiropoieton Icon of Christ in Kamouliana (St. Gregory of Nyssa)

Finding of the Not Made With Hands Icon in Kamouliana (Feast Day - August 9)

The Finding of the Acheiropoieton and Revered Icon of Kamouliana, 
which was written by our Holy Father Gregory the Bishop of Nyssa.*


What great thing happened to you Akylina,
For you saw the great condescension of Christ?

Our Lord Jesus Christ, our righteous and only true God, inasmuch as He is invisible according to the essence of His Divinity, and invincible according to His authority, and ineffable according to His power; He, Who is according to His nature is a lover of mankind and good; the unchangeable image of the Father; Who does not repent for giving out His graces; pre-eternally and invisibly begotten of the Father, and in the latter days born seedlessly from a Virgin Mother; He once again allowed to show Himself in a holy icon by His own goodness and immeasurable compassion. While at one time through His birth and presence in the flesh He led the Magi by means of a star, now through the finding of His icon He attracted those who were infants in their minds towards perfect knowledge. O unspeakable philanthropy! O immeasurable solicitude! O ineffable gift! O incomprehensible mystery! This is an astonishing and awesome thing, brethren. That the Creator of all things can be seen by us who are made of clay with an all-revered character, and there where He arrived in the flesh, He appeared young by His birth. Now He has accepted today to be venerated with a physical icon. O great wonder! Again the Master has descended to the servants. Come therefore brethren and listen fathers, and I will narrate to all of you, who fear the Lord, what wondrous things took place in Kamouliana, the new Bethlehem, and through words will present before your eyes, I the humble Gregory, concerning the honorable and blessed woman Vassa, who was renamed Akylina, which was revealed to me the unworthy one by the Holy Spirit.

Apostle Matthias Resource Page


Going out, Judas was hoisted up by the noose,
Going in, Matthias was hoisted up by the wood.
On the ninth divine Matthias was hoisted on the wood.

Holy Apostle Matthias of the Twelve

Holy Apostle Matthias as a Model for our Lives

Three Sayings Attributed to the Apostle Matthias

1. But the begining of this is to marvel at things, as Plato says in the Theatetus and as Matthias says in the Traditions when he urges, "Marvel at what is present," laying this down as the first step toward the knowledge of things beyond.

- Clement of Alexandria, Stromata

Synaxarion of the Holy Ten Martyrs at the Chalke Gate

Holy Ten Martyrs of Chalke (Feast Day - August 9)

On this day we commemorate the Holy Ten Martyrs, who contested on behalf of the holy icon of our Savior Jesus Christ at the Chalke Gate: Julian, Marcian, John, James, Alexios, Demetrios, Photios, Peter, Leontios and Maria the Patrician.


To the Nine Martyrs.
Nine men killed the enemy of God,
Becoming friends of God by the sword.

To Maria.
Receive O Savior the blood from my throat,
Maria declared as when Maria lamented.

Saint Constantine I, Patriarch of Constantinople (+ 677)

St. Constantine I of Constantinople (Feast Day - August 9)

Saint Constantine I succeeded John V as Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople in the year 675. Prior to this he was Deacon and Skevofylax of the Great Church of Christ. Constantine is referred to as a traveler of Thrace and Macedonia, and is characterized as a great man and prudent clergy. He is especially honored for fighting against the heresy of Monothelitism. He reposed in the year 677.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Saint Myron of Crete Resource Page

St. Myron of Crete (Feast Day - August 8)


The divinely virtuous Myron sent forth an odor of myrrh,
A fragrant scent pleasing to the Lord.

Saint Myron the Wonderworker of Crete

After 16 Centuries the Relics of St. Myron are Wondrously Uncovered in Crete

17 Miracles of Saint Myron the Wonderworker and Bishop of Crete

St. Myron of Crete (Feast Day - August 8)

Hundreds of books could be written about the miracles of Saint Myron of Crete alone, going back many centuries. Below are just a few from the past hundred years or so.

1. In 1930, Lambros Zacharis, the director of the magazine "Family Life", was healed through the miraculous grace of the holy water of the Saint, who at the time served as a preacher of the Metropolis of Rethymnon and Mylopotamos. He suffered from a serious eye problem and had lost much of his vision. Having heard of the miracles of Saint Myron, he went to his grave, prayed, washed his eyes with holy water, and immediately became well. Since then he would often return to thank Saint Myron for the miracle.

The Veneration of Saint Aimilianos of Cyzicus in Greece

Though Saint Aimilianos the Confessor and Bishop of Cyzicus has been the primary Saint celebrated on August 8th for many centuries, there are only three shrines dedicated to his honor in all of Greece. The first is a church in the coastal area of Kallimasia on the island of Chios, the second is also a church in the neighborhood of Tarampoura in the city of Patras, and the third is a chapel in the village of Tripotamos on the island of Tinos. It should be noted that the Parish Church of Saint Aimilianos on Skouze Hill in Athens and the chapels dedicated to Saint Aimilianos in Porto Heli, Kea, Symi and Antipaxos all honor a different Saint Aimilianos who was a martyr and is celebrated on July 18th.

Holy New Martyr Spaso (Anastasios) of Rodovis in Bulgaria (+ 1794)

St. Spaso of Rodovis (Feast Day - August 8)


The body of Anastasios was bound to torments,
Finding the lot entirely free of pain.

Saint Spaso, also called Anastasios, was born in the village of Rodovis that was situated in the Strumitza district of Bulgaria. At the age of twenty he went to Thessaloniki, where he worked as a clerk in a clothing store.

Monday, August 7, 2017

Documentary on the Miracle of the Snakes of the Panagia in Kefallonia from the 1960's

Synaxarion of the Holy Martyr Dometios of Persia and his Two Disciples

St. Dometios of Persia (Feast Day - August 7)


You swiftly trained your initiates Father,
In all things your fellow contestants by stones.
On the seventh your two initiates were covered Dometios.

Saint Dometios was born during the reign of Constantine the Great in the year 318. He was from Persia. Having been catechized by a Christian named Abar and taught the faith of Christ, he abandoned his ancestral impiety and every other attachment to his relatives. Therefore he went to the city called Nisibis, which is found at the border between the land of the Romans and the land of the Persians. There the Saint entered a monastery, was baptized, was dressed in the monastic schema, and took on every struggle and asceticism.

Sayings of Holy Abba Hyperechios

Holy Abba Hyperechios (Feast Day - August 7)


Although Hyperechios lies hidden in a grave,
He has been put forth as an equal among the choirs of Angels.

1. Abba Hyperechios said, 'As the lion is terrible to wild asses, so is the experienced monk to desires.'

2. He also said, 'Fasting is a check against sin for the monk. He who discards it is like a rampaging stallion' (cf. Jer. 5.8).

Life and Sayings of Holy Abba Or of Nitria

Holy Abba Or (Feast Day - August 7)


"From the earth Or departed to me," said grace,
"On behalf of Or begotten by you O law."


Or, one of the early monks in Nitria, associated with Theodore and Sisoes, died about A.D. 390.

Holy Hieromartyr Narcissus, Patriarch of Jerusalem (+ c. 216)

St. Narcissus of Jerusalem (Feast Day - August 7)


Your pleasant scent, Narcissus, more than a narcissus,
Gives fragrance to the land of Eden.

Of Greek origin, tradition holds that Narcissus was born in the year 99 and was at least 80 when he was made the thirtieth bishop of Jerusalem. More than a century had then elapsed since the city was destroyed by the Romans, and it had since been rebuilt as Aelia Capitolina by the Emperor Hadrian.

In the year 195, Narcissus, together with Theophitos or Theoktistos, bishop of Caesarea in Palestine, presided over a synod held by the bishops of Palestine in Caesarea, and it was decreed that Easter was to be always kept on a Sunday, and not with the Jewish Passover.

Discourse on the Transfiguration (St. Gregory of Sinai)

The following discourse was translated by David Balfour from the first critical edition of the text. The Greek text and an introduction with analysis of it can be read here.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

The Snakes of the Panagia Have Made Their Appearance in Kefallonia (2017)

Just as every year, from the feast of the Transfiguration of Christ till the feast of the Dormition of the Theotokos, or from August 6th to 15th, snakes appear in a wondrous manner in two villages of Kefallonia with chapels dedicated to the Dormition of the Theotokos, in Markopoulo and Arginia, that appear to worship among the pilgrims who flock to these chapels, and venerate of their own accord the icon of the Panagia.

Elder Paisios in the Light of the Transfiguration

By Dionysios Farasiotis

One day, when I was leaving Elder Paisios’s cell, I recalled something that was troubling me and I mentioned it to him: “Elder, that yogi, Niranjan, was able to produce a light.” “What kind of light?” he asked. “Once, when we were all sitting around him, his body suddenly started to give off a golden-yellowish light in the form of a continually expanding sphere, which eventually engulfed us all. I wasn’t the same afterwards – it altered my way of thinking. What was that light?”

The Transfiguration of our Lord, God and Savior Jesus Christ (St. Nikolai Velimirovich)

By St. Nikolai Velimirovich


In the third year of His preaching, the Lord Jesus often spoke to His disciples of His approaching passion but at the same time of His glory following His suffering on the Cross. So that His impending passion would not totally weaken His disciples and that no one would fall away from Him, He, the All-wise, wanted to partially show them His divine glory before His passion. For that reason, He took Peter, James and John with Him and, with them, went out at night to Mt. Tabor and there was transfigured before them: "And His face shone as the sun and His garments became white as snow" (Matt. 17:2). There appeared alongside Him, Moses and Elijah, the great Old Testament prophets. And, seeing this, His disciples were amazed. Peter said: "Lord, it is good for us to be here: if You will, let us make here three tabernacles; one for You, one for Moses and one for Elijah" (Matt. 17:4). While Peter still spoke, Moses and Elijah departed and a bright cloud overshadowed the Lord and His disciples and there came a voice from the cloud saying: "This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased; hear Him" (Matt. 17:5). Hearing the voice, the disciples fell to the ground on their faces as though dead and remained that way, lying in fear, until the Lord came near to them and said: "Arise and be not afraid" (Matt. 17:7). 

On the Transfiguration of Christ (St. John of Damascus)

By St. John of Damascus

A bright cloud overshadowed them, and seeing within it Jesus the Savior with Moses and Elijah, the disciples were filled with great fear.

Of old when Moses saw God he experienced the divine darkness, indicating the symbolic nature of the law; for as Paul has written, the law contained only a shadow of the things to come, not the reality itself. In the past Israel could not look at the transient glory on the face of Moses; but we, beholding the glory of the Lord with unveiled faces, are being transformed from one degree of glory to another by the Lord who is the Spirit. The cloud, therefore, that overshadowed the disciples was not one of threatening darkness but of light; for the mystery hidden from past ages has been revealed to show us perpetual and eternal glory. Moses and Elijah, representing the law and the prophets, stood by the Savior because he whom the law and the prophets proclaimed was present in Jesus, the giver of life.

On the Transfiguration of Christ (St. Anastasios of Sinai)

By St. Anastasios of Sinai

Upon Mount Tabor, Jesus revealed to his disciples a heavenly mystery. While living among them he had spoken of the kingdom and of his second coming in glory, but to banish from their hearts any possible doubt concerning the kingdom and to confirm their faith in what lay in the future by its prefiguration in the present, he gave them on Mount Tabor a wonderful vision of his glory, a foreshadowing of the kingdom of heaven. It was as if he said to them: “As time goes by you may be in danger of losing your faith. To save you from this I tell you now that some standing here listening to me will not taste death until they have seen the Son of Man coming in the glory of his Father." Moreover, in order to assure us that Christ could command such power when he wished, the evangelist continues: "Six days later, Jesus took with him Peter, James and John, and led them up a high mountain where they were alone. There, before their eyes, he was transfigured. His face shone like the sun, and his clothes became as white as light. Then the disciples saw Moses and Elijah appear, and they were talking to Jesus."

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Saint John Jacob the Chozebite (+ 1960)

St. John Jacob of Romania (Feast Day - August 5)

Saint John Jacob was born in Romania on 23 July 1913, in Crainiceni village, Horodistea commune, former Dorohoi county, to a family of religious peasants, Maxim and Aikaterina, having been the only child of his parents. He was baptised Elijah and turned out to be a child chosen and blessed by God.

Saint Euthymios I, Patriarch of Constantinople (+ 917)

St. Euthymios of Constantinople (Feast Day - August 5);
miniature from the Madrid Skylitzes depicts the Ordination of Euthymios as Patriarch of Constantinople.

Our Holy Father Euthymios was born in Seleucia of Isauria around 834, and became a monk at an early age. According to his funeral oration, composed by Arethas of Caesarea, he was a relative of the wonderworker Gregory of Dekapolis. Following stints at the monastic community of Mount Olympus and a monastery near Nicomedia, Euthymios came to the Roman capital, Constantinople, where he entered the Monastery of Saint Theodore, in the capital's outskirts. Euthymios had a relationship with the Patriarch Ignatios, whom he alludes to as his master, and it is probably during Ignatios' second tenure on the patriarchal throne (867–877) that he was appointed as the spiritual father of the prince Leo, the eldest son of Emperor Basil I the Macedonian (r. 867–886) and future emperor known as Leo VI the Wise (r. 886–912). It has been argued that Euthymios was possibly the spiritual father of all of Basil's sons. Euthymios supported Leo in his conflict with his father over his affair with Zoe Zaoutzaina. He helped Leo survive his imprisonment in 883–886, while the young prince constantly requested his advice, forcing him to stay in Constantinople rather than his monastery.

Holy Hieromartyr Fabian I, Pope of Rome (+ 250)

St. Fabian of Rome (Feast Day - August 5)


Fabian the sacrificer of Christ lies dead,
Brought before Christ as a new sacrifice by the sword.

Eusebius of Caeasarea writes the following concerning the election of Fabian, also known as Fabianus, as Bishop of Rome (Church History, 6, 29):

"Gordianus succeeded Maximinus as Roman emperor; and Pontianus, who had been bishop of the church at Rome for six years, was succeeded by Anteros. After he had held the office for a month, Fabianus succeeded him.

Friday, August 4, 2017

A Church to Saint Paisios the Athonite Being Built by Elder Euthymios in Kapsala of Mount Athos

A church is in the process of being built in Kapsala of Mount Athos dedicated to Saint Paisios the Athonite by the brotherhood of Elder Euthymios.

The First Greek Parish Dedicated to Saint Paisios the Athonite

The first parish church dedicated to Saint Paisios is located in New Ephesus of Pieria in Central Macedonia, Greece. It was consecrated on July 11, 2015.

Father Grigorios, the Last Inhabitant and Monk of Strofades, Has Reposed

Father Grigorios was a Greek Orthodox monk who lived 38 years of his life, almost alone, in the medieval Monastery of the Savior on the small Ionian islands of Strofades.

Father Grigorios passed away on Monday, 31 July, at his home village of Agala, Zakynthos where he returned in 2014 due to ill health.

The Patient Impassioned Suffering of the Seven Sleepers of Ephesus (St. Gregory of Tours)

By St. Gregory of Tours

(Glory of the Martyrs)

1. With Christian persecutions and idol worship the world over, seven noblemen were in the palace of the King at whose petty sins of ordering God to be worshipped through lifeless images they felt divine remorse and converted; after their baptism were they renamed. When Decius came to Ephesus, he ordered that Christians be persecuted to the elimination, if possible, of their faith. He burned them amidst their pleas and fear. They burned victims and the whole city went dark with fumes. The seven champions for Christ fell crying with dust pouring over their head, begging pity of God looking down from heaven that he not, in being conquered, let his people die like this.

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