Saturday, September 30, 2017

Saint Michael, First Metropolitan of Kiev and All Russia (+ 992)

St. Michael I, Metropolitan of Kiev and All Rus (Feast Day - September 30 & June 15)

Saint Michael the first Metropolitan of Kiev, according to the Joakimov Chronicle, was a Syrian by birth, but according to other chronicles, he was a Bulgarian or Serb or Greek. In the year 989, he arrived at Korsun with other clergy following the baptism of Prince Vladimir (July 15) in 988. Prince Vladimir had requested from Constantinople after his baptism that clergy be sent to Russia to shed the light of Christ among the people entrenched in the superstition of idolatry. Ecumenical Patriarch Nicholas II Chrysoberges therefore chose Michael to lead the people of Russia, on account of his wisdom and blameless and holy way of life. He was accompanied by six bishops and a large number of clergy to assist him in his mission. From Korsun Prince Vladmir brought Michael to Kiev, the capital of Russia at the time, for the illumination of the people of Kiev.

Saints and Feasts of September 30


On the thirtieth Gregory died in Great Armenia.

Holy Hieromartyr Gregory the Illuminator, Bishop of Great Armenia

Saint Gregory the Illuminator Resource Page


Holy Martyrs Rhipsimia and Gaiana and the Thirty-Two Virgin-Martyrs With Them

Holy Martyrs Rhipsimia and Gaiana of Armenia together with their Companions


Holy Seventy Martyrs

Holy Martyrs Rhipsimia and Gaiana of Armenia together with their Companions


Holy Two Venerable Women Martyrs

Holy Martyrs Rhipsimia and Gaiana of Armenia together with their Companions


Saint Michael I, Metropolitan of Kiev and All Russia

Saint Michael, First Metropolitan of Kiev and All Russia (+ 992)



Saint Gregory the Illuminator Resource Page

St. Gregory the Illuminator of Armenia (Feast Day - September 30)

Verses

Knowing the "be watchful" of God the Word,
You were seen to be watchful Father to the call of God.
On the thirtieth Gregory died in Great Armenia.

Saint Gregory the Illuminator of Armenia

History of Saint Gregory the Illuminator and the Conversion of Armenia

Friday, September 29, 2017

An Offering of Praise to Holy Abba Isaac the Syrian (Photios Kontoglou)

Sketch of St. Isaac the Syrian by the hand of Photios Kontoglou

ENCOMIUM

An Offering of Praise to Holy Abba Isaac the Syrian,
Inadequate for the Sublimity of Its Subject,
but Written With Much Love

Photios Kontoglou

Athens, 1944

'The man to whom wisdom has been given knows 
the inward essences of immaterial things and what 
is the origin and consummation of the world.'
- Thalassios the Lybian
(Century 1:47)

He who wishes to praise the holy Isaac should hold an Archangel's trumpet, and not this sinful pen I have here in my hand.

Who will weave an unfading garland for his head? With what melodious praise could any human being laud this man who is hymned by the very angels? With the harmonious art of the tongue, come now, let us extol this humble wildflower of Syria, this gold-spangled fountain of immortality, this salt of the earth, this honeybee of virtue, this gold-stringed lute which ravishes the heart, this divinely-fashioned intellect, this glory of the Orient, this tremendous ocean, this enchanted light shining to unfathomed depths, this blessed child of God, and whatever else our tongue may call him, accustomed as it is to speak of trivialities.

The Monk Who Searched for the True Faith


By St. John Moschos

(The Spiritual Meadow, Chapt. 26)

The Life of brother Theophanes and his Marvellous Vision, and of Communicating with Heretics

There was an old man of great merit in God’s eyes called Kyriakos, who belonged to the Lavra of Calamon near the River Jordan. A pilgrim brother called Theophanes from the region of Dora came to him for counsel about his thoughts of fornication. The old man encouraged and instructed him with advice about modesty and chastity, which greatly edified the brother.

Saint Cyprian of Ustiug (+ 1276)

St. Cyril of Ustiug (Feast Day - September 29)

Saint Cyprian of Ustiug was a rich landowner, but turning from the vanities of the world, he received the angelic schema with the name Cyprian at the Monastery of the Holy Trinity at Gledeno.

The inhabitants of the newly-established city of Ustiug begged Saint Cyprian to build a monastery somewhere near the city. Saint Cyprian went about the city and observed its layout, then chose a place near shallow lakes at the Ostrozh falls and he started to construct a cell.

Uncovering of the Relics of Saint John Maximovitch in 1993

Uncovering of the Relics of St. John Maximovitch (Feast Day - September 29)

In the fall of the 1993 the Synod of Bishops charged the Archbishop of Western America and San Francisco, together with a commission comprised of two other archpastors, to examine Saint John's remains. In the evening of September 28, 1993 (o.s.), after a pannykhida served in the sepulcher by members of the commission, Archbishop Anthony gave a brief homily, calling all participants of this holy work to be reconciled and himself asking forgiveness of everyone, blessed those present to open the tomb. Having removed the lid of the sarcophagus, the participants withdrew the metal coffin of the Saint and noticed that in many places it had completely rusted through. With the fear of God and with prayer, they opened the coffin. The face of the Saint was covered and everyone immediately turned their attention to his white, incorrupt hands. Having prayed, Archbishop Anthony removed the "aer" from the brow of Vladyka and exposed the incorrupt face of the God-glorified Saint. At this moment a kind of supernatural spiritual peace, an extraordinary reverent silence was felt. No one was amazed, no one spoke. All problems seemed to vanish, such was the Grace-filled experience of standing beside the Saint's relics.

Saints and Feasts of September 29


Onion-eating Kyriakos made his end on the twenty-ninth.

Venerable Kyriakos the Anchorite

Saint Kyriakos the Anchorite


Holy Martyrs Gobdelaha, Dada, Kasdios and Kasdoa of Persia

Holy Martyrs Gobdelaha, Dada, Kasdios and Kasdoa of Persia


Venerable Mary of Palestine

Saint Mary of Palestine


Venerable Theophanes the Compassionate of Gaza

Saint Theophanes the Compassionate of Gaza


Venerable Cyprian of Ustiug

Saint Cyprian of Ustiug (+ 1276)


Holy New Venerable Martyr Malachias of Rhodes

Holy New Martyr Malachias of Lindos (+ 16th cent.)


Saint Onuphrius of the St. David Gareji Monastery

Saint Onuphrius of the St. David Gareji Monastery


Holy Martyrs Massacred at Strofades

Strofades Monastery and the Massacre of 1537


Uncovering of the Relics of Saint John (Maximovitch), Archbishop of Shanghai and San Francisco (1993)

Uncovering of the Relics of Saint John Maximovitch in 1993


Thursday, September 28, 2017

Saint Eustochium, Daughter of Saint Paula

St. Eustochium (Feast Day - September 28);
Painting from the Bowes Museum at Barnard Castle, England

Saint Eustochium was born Eustochium Julia at Rome around the year 368. She was the daughter of Saint Paula and is also venerated as a saint and was an early Desert Mother. She was the third of four daughters of the Roman Senator Toxotius, for whom Jerome made a lot of fanciful claims of ancestry. After the death of her husband (ca. 380) Paula and her daughter Eustochium lived in Rome as austere a life as the Desert Fathers of Egypt. Eustochium had three sisters, Blaesilla, Paulina, and Rufina, and a brother, Toxotius.

Synaxarion of Saint Auxentios the Wonderworker of Cyprus

St. Auxentios of Cyprus (Feast Day - September 28)

Verses

Auxentios with the highest praise,
I praise, who increased the God-given talent.
On the twenty-eighth Auxentios was taken up to heaven.

Our holy father Auxentios was by race a German,* as the story concerning him shows. But of what parents, and what religion, and in what age, I cannot say precisely. What I know concerning him, this I will begin to narrate. From his earliest youth he gave himself to forays and wars and won great praise, showing himself to his enemies most terrible, and to the soldiers with him gentle, kind and most beloved. But as they tell of him, through some God-given impulse he renounced the world and its delights, and reckoning all glory as a dream, he hastened to break away from them. Hence, as some say, he opened his thoughts to those about him (for he had three hundred soldiers under his command) and found them all amenable, and even thirsting after that for which he himself thirsted: wherefore he was not heedless, but starting with this purpose he came to a certain sea shore, and there found a ship, and on this he embarked with the soldiers mentioned above, and reached the famous Cyprus, by God's guidance as I suppose, and arriving there they left the ship, and all the soldiers, one here, one there, were scattered abroad, and where each chose his dwelling-place there he followed in all strictness the life of a monk. But himself, our holy father Auxentios, reached Karpas,** a village so called which is a part of the said island, and finding a cave in a place called by the natives Loution, he dwelt therein. He gave himself up to the severest fasting and discipline, until, having cleansed his soul and body from lusts, he made it a temple of the Holy Spirit, and a receptacle of His gifts, and with unceasing prayer, and sleepless entreaty, speaking with God alone, he received from Him the gift of healing, and became a worker of not a few miracles. But the wonders wrought by him we have not set forth in this history, as it is for those for whom it must be brief, but we shall mention one only, which shall give credit to the rest.

Saints Cyril and Maria, Parents of Saint Sergius of Radonezh (+ 1337)

Sts. Cyril and Maria, Parents of St. Sergius of Radonezh (Feast Day - September 28)

Saint Cyril and his wife Maria were the parents of Saint Sergius of Radonezh (Sept. 25). They belonged to the nobility, but more importantly, they were pious and faithful Christians who were adorned with every virtue.

When the child in Maria’s womb cried out three times in church during Liturgy, people were astonished. Although frightened at first, Maria came to see this event as a sign from God that her child would become a chosen vessel of divine grace. She and her husband agreed that if the child was a boy, they would bring him to church and dedicate him to God. This child, the second of their three sons, was born around 1314. He was named Bartholomew at his baptism.

Saints and Feasts of September 28


On the twenty-eighth Chariton died in his old age.

Venerable Chariton the Confessor

Saint Chariton the Confessor

The Rebirth of the First Monastery in the Holy Land - The Lavra of Saint Chariton

A Pilgrim Visits Saint Chariton Monastery in the Judean Desert


Righteous Prophet Baruch

Holy and Righteous Prophet Baruch


Holy Martyrs Alexander, Alpheios and Zosimas the Brothers

Holy Martyrs of Pisidia During the Reign of Diocletian


Holy Martyr Mark the Shepherd

Holy Martyrs of Pisidia During the Reign of Diocletian


Holy Martyrs Nikon, Neon, Heliodoros, and other Virgins and Children

Holy Martyrs of Pisidia During the Reign of Diocletian


Venerable Isaac the Syrian

Saint Isaac the Syrian Resource Page


Venerable Auxentios the Wonderworker of Cyprus

Synaxarion of Saint Auxentios the Wonderworker of Cyprus


Finding of the Sacred Relics of the Venerable Neophytos the Recluse of Cyprus

Saint Neophytos the Recluse of Cyprus (+ 1219)

Saint Neophytos the Recluse as a Model for our Lives

Why St. Neophytos the Recluse Wrote His "Hexaemeron" ("Six-Days of Creation")

Writings of Saint Neophytos Presented At Conference


Saint Eustochium, Daughter of Saint Paula

Saint Eustochium, Daughter of Saint Paula


Saint Faustus, Bishop of Riez

Saint Faustus, Bishop of Riez (+ 495)

John Cassian, Vincent of Lerins and Faustus of Riez Were Not Semi-Pelagians


Saints Cyril and Maria, Parents of Saint Sergius of Radonezh

Saints Cyril and Maria, Parents of Saint Sergius of Radonezh (+ 1337)


Holy Martyr Wenceslas the Prince of the Czechs

Holy Martyr Wenceslas the Prince of the Czechs

Good King Wenceslas

The Original Words to the Song "Good King Wenceslas"

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Synaxarion of Saint Ignatios, Abbot of Vatheos Ryakos (+ 975)

St. Ignatios of Vatheos Ryakos (Feast Day - September 27)

Verses

Ignatios received a celestial monastery,
Having beforehand led a monastery as a friend of God.

Saint Ignatios was from the second eparchy of Cappadocia, during the reigns of Nikephoros Phokas (963-969) and John Tzimiskes (969-976). At a young age he was dedicated to God like another Samuel, and went to the monastery known as Vatheos Ryakos, where he learned ascetic precision from Saint Basil, who was the abbot and founder of this monastery. Having arrived at the pinnacle of virtue, he was ordained in steps as a Reader, Subdeacon, Deacon and Presbyter. Because he was a good administrator, he increased the monastery by both bringing in more revenue and making improvements. He also built various churches, such as one to the Commander Michael, another to the God-Seeing Elias, and another to the Holy Apostles near the monastery. He also built a wall for the nuns that were there, which was strong and beautiful.

Feasts and Saints of September 27


On the twenty-seventh Kallistratos from here was taken.

Holy Martyr Kallistratos and the Forty-Nine Martyrs With Him

Saint Kallistratos and the 49 Martyrs With Him

Saint Kallistratos and the 49 Martyrs With Him as Models for our Lives


Holy Martyr Epicharis of Rome

Saint Epicharis the Martyr of Rome


Venerable Ignatios, Abbot of Vatheos Ryakos

Synaxarion of Saint Ignatios, Abbot of Vatheos Ryakos (+ 975)


Holy New Martyr Akylina of Thessaloniki

Holy New Martyr Akylina of Thessaloniki (+ 1764)

Metropolitan Nikodemos of Ierissos and the Discovery of the Relics of St. Akylina

After 249 Years, the Relics of St. Akylina Return to Her Homeland


Holy New Hieromartyr Anthimos, Metropolitan of Wallachia

Holy New Hieromartyr Anthimos, Metropolitan of Wallachia (+ 1716)

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Saint Nilus the Younger of Calabria (+ 1002)

St. Nilus of Calabria (Feast Day - September 26)

By William Palmer

St. Nilus was born in Calabria, of Greek parentage, in the tenth century. His natural abilities were carefully cultivated by study in his youth. He read holy Scripture continually, and delighted in the lives of the fathers: but when he was in the flower of his youth he fell into sins, from which he was after a time delivered by the grace of God operating on his conscience during his recovery from a violent fever. He then resolved to devote himself wholly to the worship and service of God, and to all the exercises of the religious life; and with this mind he entered a monastery in Calabria, where he was joyfully received; but wishing for more quiet than he found there, he retired to a cavern near at hand, where he spent his days between prayer, copying psalters and other religious books, singing the psalms, and studying holy Scripture and the fathers. In the evening he left his cell to walk abroad and refresh himself, and meditate on some passages of the fathers, without ever forgetting God, whom he contemplated in all the works of creation. After sunset he took his frugal meal, and in the night he slept but for a short time, and then recited the psalms till daylight. His fasts were frequent and long.

Saints and Feasts of September 26


On the twenty-sixth the child of thunder departed unto God.

Metastasis of the Holy, Glorious, Apostle and Evangelist John the Theologian

Saint John the Theologian Resource Page


Righteous Gideon, the Judge of Israel

Righteous Gideon, the Judge of Israel


Venerable John the Cave-Dweller, Who Lived in Asceticism in Sia of Cyprus

Saint John the Cave-Dweller, Who Lived in Asceticism in Sia of Cyprus


Saint Nilus the Younger of Calabria

Saint Nilus the Younger of Calabria (+ 1002)


Translation of the Honorable Head of the First-Called Apostle Andrew

The Translation of the Honorable Skull of the Apostle Andrew to Patras

The Return of the Skull of the Apostle Andrew to Patras in 1964 as Reported in the New York Times

Monday, September 25, 2017

Synaxarion of Saint Euphrosyne, Daughter of Saint Paphnutios of Egypt

St. Euphrosyne of Alexandria (Feast Day - September 25)

Verses

To Euphrosyne.
In a manly way you hid your femininity Euphrosyne,
And secretly you beheld the Master who sees.
On the twenty-fifth Euphrosyne submitted to death.

To Paphnutios.
Abating the flesh Paphnutios,
Lived in the Spirit, and is seen as a great light.

Saint Sergius the Wonderworker, Abbot of Radonezh (+ 1392)

St. Sergius of Radonezh (Feast Day - September 25)

Saint Sergius of Radonezh was born in the village of Varnitsa, near Rostov, on May 3, 1314. His parents were the pious and illustrious nobles Cyril and Maria (September 28). The Lord chose him while still in his mother’s womb. In the Life of Saint Sergius it is reported that even before the birth of her son, Saint Maria and those praying heard the thrice-repeated cry of the infant at the Divine Liturgy: before the reading of the Holy Gospel, during the Cherubic hymn, and when the priest pronounced: “Holy Things are for the Holy.”

Saints and Feasts of September 25


On the twenty-fifth Euphrosyne submitted to death.

Venerable Euphrosyne, Daughter of Saint Paphnutios of Egypt

Synaxarion of Saint Euphrosyne, Daughter of Saint Paphnutios of Egypt

Saint Euphrosyne as a Model for our Lives


Venerable Paphnutios, Father of Venerable Euphrosyne

Synaxarion of Saint Euphrosyne, Daughter of Saint Paphnutios of Egypt

Saint Euphrosyne as a Model for our Lives


Holy Venerable Martyr Paphnutios of Jerusalem

Saint Paphnutios of Jerusalem as a Model for our Lives


Commemoration of the Great Earthquake and the Snatching Up of the Child in the Air

Commemoration of the Great Earthquake of 447 and the Snatching Up of the Child in the Air

The Miracle of the Trisagion ("Thrice-Holy Hymn")

Earthquakes in the Synaxarion of the Orthodox Church


Venerable Sergius the Wonderworker, Abbot of Radonezh

Saint Sergius the Wonderworker, Abbot of Radonezh (+ 1392)

The Appearance of the Most Holy Theotokos to St. Sergius of Radonezh

The Testimony of St. Sergius of Radonezh at the Council of Florence

3 Ancient Icons and Relics of St. Sergius of Radonezh Stolen in Moscow


Venerable Dositheos the Recluse of the Kiev Caves Lavra

Saint Dositheos, the Hermit of Kiev (+ 1776)

Sunday, September 24, 2017

On the Love of Enemies: The Teaching of St. Silouan


By Jean-Claude Larchet

Although it is natural and usual to love those who love us and to do good to those who do good to us (Mt 5:46-47; Lk 6:32-33), to love our enemies is distasteful to our nature. One can say that it isn’t in our power but is an attitude that can only be the fruit of grace, given by the Holy Spirit. This is why St. Silouan the Athonite writes, "The soul that has not known the Holy Spirit does not understand how one can love one’s enemies, and does not accept it."

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


Sixteenth Sunday after Pentecost (or First Sunday of Luke)
The Miraculous Catch of Fish and the First Disciples

Luke 5:1-11

From The Explanation of the Gospel of St. Luke

By Blessed Theophylact, Archbishop of Ochrid and Bulgaria

1-11. And it came to pass, that, as the multitude pressed against Him to hear the word of God, He stood by the lake of Gennesaret, and saw two boats standing by the lake, but the fishermen were gone out of them, and were washing their nets. And He entered into one of the boats, which was Simon's, and prayed him that he would thrust out a little from the land. And He sat down, and taught the people out of the boat. Now when He had left speaking, He said unto Simon, "Launch out into the deep, and let down your nets for a catch." And Simon answering said unto Him, "Master, we have toiled all the night, and have taken nothing: nevertheless at Thy word I will let down the net." And when they had done this, they enclosed a great multitude of fishes, and their net broke. And they beckoned unto their partners, which were in the other boat, that they should come and help them. And they came, and filled both the boats, so that they began to sink. When Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus knees, saying, "Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord." For he was astonished, and all that were with him, at the catch of the fishes which they had taken; and so were also James, and John, the sons of Zebedee, who were partners with Simon. And Jesus said unto Simon, "Fear not; from henceforth thou shalt catch men." And when they had brought their boats to land, they forsook all, and followed Him.

Saints and Feasts of September 24


On the twenty fourth a rock received Thekla.

Holy Protomartyr and Equal to the Apostles Thekla

Synaxarion of the Holy Protomartyr and Equal to the Apostles Thekla

The Defile and Tomb of St. Thekla in Maaloula, Syria

The Hand of St. Thekla in Sarajevo


Venerable Kopris, Disciple of St. Theodosios the Coenobiarch

Synaxarion of Saint Kopris, Disciple of St. Theodosios the Coenobiarch


Venerable Silouan the Athonite

Saint Silouan the Athonite Resource Page


Synaxis of All Saints of Alaska

Saint Herman of Alaska Resource Page

Saint Innocent (Veniaminov), Metropolitan of Moscow and Missionary to Alaska

Saint Jacob Netsvetov, the Enlightener of the Peoples of Alaska

Holy New Martyr Peter the Aleut


Synaxis of Panagia Myrtidiotissa in Kythera and the Remembrance of the Healing of the Paralytic

Panagia Myrtidiotissa ("Of the Myrtle Tree") of Kythera


Synaxis of Panagia Pantanassa at Vatopaidi

A Hymn to Panagia Pantanassa By Elder Joseph of Vatopaidi

A Miracle of Panagia Pantanassa at Porto Lagos in 2005


Synaxis of Panagia Vourniotissa in Tinos

Synaxis of Panagia Vourniotissa in Tinos



Saturday, September 23, 2017

Synaxarion of the Holy Martyrs Andrew, John, Peter and Anthony of Syracuse

Sts. Andrew, John, Peter and Anthony the Martyrs (Feast Day - September 23)

Verses

To Andrew.

While the Word was stabbed once with a spear,
Andrew bore the stabs of two spears.

To John.

By the delusion of the enemy you were slaughtered and buried John,
Thus slaughtering the enemy together with delusion.

To Peter and Anthony.

Anthony and Peter were as firm as rocks,
Remaining steadfast even when their members were cut off.

Saints and Feasts of September 23


On the twenty-third the Forerunner appeared and received the womb.

The Conception of the Holy Prophet, Forerunner and Baptist John

Saint John the Baptist Resource Page


Holy Martyrs Andrew, John and his two sons Peter and Anthony

Synaxarion of the Holy Martyrs Andrew, John, Peter and Anthony of Syracuse


Holy Martyr Rhais the Virgin

Holy Virgin Martyr Rhais of Egypt


Venerable Sisters Xanthippe and Polyxene of Spain

Synaxarion of Saints Xanthippe and Polyxene of Spain

Saints Xanthippe and Polyxene as Models for our Lives


Holy New Martyr Nicholas the Huckster from Karpenisi

Holy New Martyr Nicholas the Huckster from Karpenisi (+ 1672)


Holy New Martyr John of Konitsa, Formerly a Muslim

Holy New Martyr John of Konitsa, formerly a Muslim (+ 1814)

Friday, September 22, 2017

Saint Maurice and the Theban Legion

St. Maurice and the Theban Legion (Feast Day - September 22)

Towards the end of the third century (c. 285), the Roman Emperor Maximian Herculius summoned a select legion from Thebes (in Upper Egypt) to go to Switzerland to strengthen his western front by defeating a revolt by the bagaudae. The legion was composed of Christian warriors whose ardor in battle was matched by an equally ardent faith. The Theban Legion was dispatched with orders to clear the Great St. Bernard Pass in Switzerland across Mont Blanc. Before going into battle, they were instructed to offer sacrifices to the pagan gods and pay homage to the emperor. Maurice pledged his men’s military allegiance to Rome. He stated that service to God superseded all else. To engage in wanton slaughter was inconceivable to Christian soldiers he said. He and his men refused to worship Roman deities.

Saint Jonah the Abbot of Yashezersky (+ early 17th cent.)

St. Jonah of Yashezersky (Feast Day - September 22)

Saint Jonah of Yash Lake was born in the village of Shoksha, sixteen versts from the monastery later established by him. In his youth he heard of the exploits of Saint Alexander of Svir, and desired to imitate his way of life by becoming one of his last disciples at the Monastery of the Holy Trinity at the Svir River. Saint Alexander foresaw the great grace of God in Jonah and accepted him as one of his spiritual children. Shortly before Alexander's death in 1533, Jonah received from him the blessing to live an ascetic life in the forest near his homeland. There he found the remains of an ancient pagan temple, where he planted a cross and chose as the place of his abode.

Saints and Feasts of September 22


On the twenty-second Phocas was killed in a bath.

Holy Hieromartyr Phocas the Wonderworker, Bishop of Sinope

Saint Phocas the Wonderworker, Bishop of Sinope

Chrysostom's Homily On Saint Phocas of Sinope


Holy Martyr Phocas the Gardner of Sinope

The Life and Veneration of Holy Martyr Phocas the Gardener of Sinope


Venerable Kosmas of Zographou

Saint Kosmas of Zographou Monastery (+ 1323)


Holy Twenty-Six Venerable Martyrs of Zographou

26 Holy Martyrs of Zographou Monastery

The Holy 26 Martyrs of Zographou as Models for our Lives


Saint Maurice and the Theban Legion

Saint Maurice and the Theban Legion


Venerable Jonah the Abbot of Yashezersky

Saint Jonah the Abbot of Yashezersky (+ early 17th cent.)


Holy Hieromartyr Teodosie of Brazi

Holy Hieromartyr Teodosie of Brazi (+ 1694)


Venerable Paraskeva (Pasha of Sarov) the Fool for Christ of Diveyevo

Saint Paraskeva (or Pasha) Ivanovna of Sarov - Diveyevo (+ 1915)


Thursday, September 21, 2017

Discovery of the Relics of Saint Dimitri the Metropolitan of Rostov


In 1702, Saint Dimitri, Metropolitan of Rostov, arrived at the Rostov Cathedral and also visited the Monastery of Saint James, Bishop of Rostov.

He served Liturgy at the Cathedral Church of the Conception of the Most Holy Theotokos, after which he indicated to those present the site of his future burial on the right side of the temple. “Behold my resting place,” he said, “here I will settle for eternity.” Saint Dimitri reposed on October 28, 1709.

Contrary to the Saint’s wishes, which he expressed in his will, the clergy and people of Rostov asked the locum tenens of the patriarchal throne, Metropolitan Stephen Yavorsky of Ryazan, who had come for the funeral, to conduct the burial at the cathedral church of the city.

Burial place of St. Dimitri in the Cathedral Church of the Conception of the Theotokos

Metropolitan Stephen insisted on burying the body of his deceased friend beside Saint Joasaph, who was Saint Dimitris’s predecessor. However, a grave was not prepared until the arrival of Metropolitan Stephen, even though about a month had elapsed since the Saint’s death.

Due to the urgent departure of Metropolitan Stephen from Rostov, a hastily constructed wooden frame was placed into the grave, in which the body of the Saint was buried on November 25. This circumstance, foreseen by the Providence of God, led to a quick uncovering of the relics.

In 1752 repairs were being done at the cathedral church of the monastery, and on September 21, the incorrupt body of Saint Dimitri was discovered. The place of burial had been affected by dampness, the oaken coffin and the writing on it were decayed, but the body of the Saint, and even the omophorion, sacchos, mitre and silken prayer rope were preserved undamaged.

Reliquary of St. Dimitri

After the uncovering of the holy relics many healings were worked, which were reported to the Synod, by whose order Metropolitan Sylvester of Suzdal and Archimandrite Gabriel of Simonov arrived at Rostov to examine the relics of Saint Dimitri, and to investigate the incidents of miraculous healings.

A decree was issued by the Synod on April 29, 1757 numbering Saint Dimitri, Metropolitan of Rostov among the saints, and establishing his feast days for October 28 (the day of his repose) and September 21 (the uncovering of his relics).

A healing at the tomb of St. Dimitri



How Jesus Was Greater Than Jonah (Sts. John Chrysostom & Cyril of Jerusalem)


By St. John Chrysostom

(Homilies on the Gospel of Matthew, Homily 43.3)

"Behold, a greater than Jonah is here." (Matt. 12:41)

For Jonah was a servant, but I am the Master; and he came forth from the great fish, but I rose from death. He proclaimed destruction, but I am come preaching the good tidings of the kingdom. The Ninevites indeed believed without a sign, but I have exhibited many signs. They heard nothing more than those words, but I have made it impossible to deny the truth. The Ninevites came to be ministered to, but I, the very Master and Lord of all, have come not threatening, not demanding an account, but bringing pardon. They were barbarians, but these - the faithful - have conversed with unnumbered prophets. And of Jonah nothing had been prophesied in advance, but of me everything was foretold, and all the facts have agreed with their words. And Jonah indeed, when he was to go forth, instead ran away that he might not be ridiculed. But I, knowing that I am both to be crucified and mocked, have come nonetheless. While Jonah did not endure so much as to be reproached for those who were saved, I underwent even death, and that the most shameful death, and after this I sent others again. And Jonah was a strange sort of person and an alien to the Ninevites, and unknown; but I a kinsman after the flesh and of the same forefathers.

The Flight of Jonah (St. Gregory the Theologian)


By St. Gregory the Theologian

(Excerpt from Oration 2: In Defense of his Flight to Pontus)

Jonah was fleeing from the face of God, or rather, thought that he was fleeing, but ‎he was overtaken by the sea, and the storm, and the lot, and the whale’s belly, and the ‎three days’ entombment, the type of a greater mystery. He fled from having to announce ‎the dread and awful message to the Ninevites, and from being subsequently, if the city ‎was saved by repentance, convicted of falsehood. Not that he was displeased at the ‎salvation of the wicked, but he was ashamed of being made an instrument of falsehood, ‎and exceedingly zealous for the credit of prophecy, which was in danger of being ‎destroyed in his person, since most men are unable to penetrate the depth of the Divine ‎dispensation in such cases.‎

The Great Mystery of the Prophet Jonah (St. Methodios of Olympus)


By St. Methodios of Olympus

(A Fragment of the Lost Book on the Resurrection)

The history of Jonah contains a great mystery. For it seems that the fish signifies Time, ‎which never stands still, but is always going on, and consumes the things which are made by long ‎and shorter intervals. ‎

But Jonah, who fled from the presence of God, is himself the first man who, having ‎transgressed the law, fled from being seen naked of immortality, having lost through sin his ‎confidence in the Deity. ‎

Saints and Feasts of September 21


On the twenty-first Kodratos found the crown of the contest.

Leavetaking of the Exaltation of the Honorable and Life-Creating Cross

Holy Cross Resource Page


Holy Apostle Kodratos at Magnesia

Synaxarion of the Holy Apostle Kodratos at Magnesia

Holy Apostle Kodratos as a Model for our Lives


Holy Prophet Jonah

Prophet Jonah Resource Page


Venerable Jonah the Sabbaite, Father of Theodore and Theophanes the Branded

Saint Jonah the Sabbaite, Father of Saints Theodore and Theophanes the Branded


Saints Isaac and Meletios, Bishops of Cyprus

Saints Isaac and Meletios, Bishops of Cyprus


Holy Martyr Priscus of Phrygia

Holy Martyr Priscus of Phrygia


Discovery of the Relics of Saint Dimitri the Metropolitan of Rostov

Discovery of the Relics of Saint Dimitri the Metropolitan of Rostov

Saint Dimitri of Rostov, the Chrysostom of Russia


Saint Platon Aivazidis

Saint Platon Aivazidis (+ 1921)


Synaxis of Panagia the Giatrissa in Thirasia

Synaxis of Panagia the Giatrissa in Thirasia

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Synaxis of the Panagia Voulkaniotissa in Messinia

Panagia Voulkaniotissa (Feast Day - September 20 and August 15)

Verses

Rejoice O land of Messinia,
For it is the sacred festival of Voulkaniotissa
.

At the intersection of the mountains of Ithomi and Eva (Agios Vasilios) and between the villages Archaia Messini (Mavrommati) and Valyra of the Municipality of Ithomi, is the historic Monastery of Voulkanos, which was founded in the 17th century, and rises enormously and majestically. The name "Voulkanos" and earlier "Vourkanos", "Dorkanos" and "Voulkanis" is probably owed to a Byzantine ruler or a builder, to whom the area around Mount Ithomi belonged.

Synaxarion of the Holy Confessors Pope Martin of Rome, Maximus the Most-Wise, Theodore, Euprepios and Two Named Anastasios

Holy Pope Martin, Maximus, Theodore, Euprepios, and the two Anastasioi (Feast Day - September 20)

Verses

To Martin of Rome and Maximus the Confessor.

Maximus and Martin suffered much,
Both were made worthy of much praise.

To the Two Confessors Named Anastasios.

The two Anastasioi of the teacher,
Rejoiced standing firm as pious-minded.

To Theodore and Euprepios the Confessors.

Euprepios together with the great Theodore,
Seized the reward of the grace of orthodoxy.

Synaxarion of the Holy Confessors Ypatios the Bishop and Andrew the Presbyter

Sts. Ypatios and Andrew the Confessors (Feast Day - September 20)

Verses

On behalf of the icons all-pure Ypatios,
With Andrew were slaughtered by men of blood.

These Saints were from the land of Lydia. When they were children, they went to a certain school, and with their constant fasts and vigils and pure life, as well as with their much humility and love which the renowned ones bestowed upon all, they exceeded all the other students. Andrew was entrusted to the service of the Church. Because the Bishop of Ephesus learned of their virtuous conduct, he sent for them to be brought before him. Ypatios was then ordained a Bishop, and Andrew was ordained a Presbyter, namely a Priest.

Saints and Feasts of September 20


On the twentieth Eustathios with his wife and his sons were burned.

Holy Great Martyr Eustathios Together with his Wife Theopisti and his Two Sons Agapios and Theopistos

Saint Eustathios Plakidas Resource Page


Holy Confessors Ypatios the Bishop and Andrew the Presbyter

Synaxarion of the Holy Confessors Ypatios the Bishop and Andrew the Presbyter


Holy Confessors Martin the Pope of Rome and Maximus the Most-Wise

Synaxarion of the Holy Confessors Pope Martin of Rome, Maximus the Most-Wise, Theodore, Euprepios and Two Named Anastasios

Saint Martin the Confessor, Pope of Rome (+ 655)

Saint Maximus the Confessor Resource Page


Holy Confessors Anastasios and Anastasios, Disciples of Saint Maximus the Confessor

Synaxarion of the Holy Confessors Pope Martin of Rome, Maximus the Most-Wise, Theodore, Euprepios and Two Named Anastasios


Holy Confessors Euprepios and Theodore, Disciples of Saint Maximus the Confessor

Synaxarion of the Holy Confessors Pope Martin of Rome, Maximus the Most-Wise, Theodore, Euprepios and Two Named Anastasios


Venerable John the Stranger of Crete

Saint John the Stranger, Enlightener of Crete (+ 1031)


Saint Eustathios Kataphloros, Archbishop of Thessaloniki

Saint Eustathios Kataphloros, Archbishop of Thessaloniki (+ 1195)


Holy Venerable Martyr Hilarion the New of Crete

Holy New Martyr Hilarion the New of Crete (+ 1804)


Synaxis of the Panagia Voulkaniotissa

Synaxis of the Panagia Voulkaniotissa in Messinia


Tuesday, September 19, 2017

8 Year Old Mute Girl Spoke for First Time Before the Icon of Panagia Gorgoepikoos


By Elias Proufas

September 18, 2017

Many have been moved these past few days by a new miracle of the Panagia Gorgoepikoos (She Who is Quick to Hear) which concerns an 8 year old girl from Larisa. The incident happened last week at Panagia Theoskepastos Monastery in Sochos near Thessaloniki, which is a female dependency of the Holy Monastery of Docheiariou of Mount Athos.

Specifically, one week each year, and specifically on September 6th, the wonderworking icon of Panagia Gorgoepikoos is brought from Mount Athos to the monastery at Sochos where those who are not able to go to Docheiariou, especially women and young children, could venerate it. Thousands of people from Greece and Cyprus and other foreign countries go to the monastery and venerate the icon of the Panagia and to receive a blessing from the Abbot of the Athonite Monastery of Docheiariou, Elder Gregory.

Saint Sequanus of Mesmont (+ c. 580)

St. Sequanus of Mesmont (Feast Day - September 19)

Saint Sequanus* was born in the town of Mesmont, in Burgundy. His parents gave him an excellent education, and permitted him to embrace monasticism, to which he was inclined from childhood. After being tonsured by his priest and living as a hermit, the Bishop of Langres ordained him to the priesthood due to his holy way of life. However, he was disliked by the local clergy, so he went to the Monastery of Reome in Auxois under the direction of Abbot John, and there he studied Holy Scripture and attained all the virtues.

Holy Prince Igor of Kiev and Chernigov (+ 1147)

St. Igor of Kiev and Chernigov (Feast Day - September 19)

The Holy Prince Igor of Chernigov: The mid-twelfth century was a grievous time of incessant internecine strife over the Kiev principality between two princely factions: the Olegovichi and the Mstislavichi. They were all close relatives, they were all great-grandsons of Yaroslav the Wise. The Mstislavichi were called after their father, Saint Mstislav the Great (April 15), son of Vladimir Monomakh (from whence their other name: “Monomashichi”). The Olegovichi were called after the name of Oleg Sviatoslavich (+ 1115), known as “Gorislavich” because of his bitter [“gore”] fate. Oleg Gorislavich was the son of the Kievan prince Sviatoslav (+ 1076), who participated in the Transfer of the Relics of the holy Passion-Bearers Boris and Gleb in the year 1072 (May 2). Sviatoslav was the owner of two of the most remarkable theological collections of this time -- the “Sviatoslav Izbornik [selections from the holy Fathers] of 1073” and the “Izbornik of 1076.”

Holy Prince Theodore of Smolensk (+ 1299) and his Children Saints David and Constantine

Sts. Theodore, David and Constantine of Smolensk (Feast Day - September 19)

The holy right-believing Prince Theodore of Smolensk and Yaroslavl, nicknamed the “Black” [i.e. “dark” or “swarthy”], was born at a terrible time for Rus: the Mongol invasion of 1237-1239. At Baptism he was named for the holy Great Martyr Theodore Stratelates (February 8), who was particularly esteemed by the Russian warrior-princes.

Prince Theodore was famed for his military exploits. The child Theodore was not in the city when, through the prayers of the Most Holy Theotokos, the holy Martyr Mercurius (November 24) delivered Smolensk from being captured by Batu In the year 1239. They had taken him away and hidden him in a safe place during the warfare. In 1240 his father, Prince Rostislav died. He was a great-grandson of the holy Prince Rostislav of Smolensk and Kiev (March 14).

Saints and Feasts of September 19


On the nineteenth Trophimos with his two fellow athletes were cut asunder.

Holy Martyrs Trophimos, Sabbatios, and Dorymedon

Synaxarion of the Holy Martyrs Trophimos, Sabbatios, and Dorymedon

Holy Martyrs Trophimos, Sabbatios and Dorymedon as Models for our Lives


Saint Theodore of Tarsus, Archbishop of Canterbury

Saint Theodore of Tarsus, Archbishop of Canterbury (+ 690)


Holy Martyr Zosimas the Hermit of Cilicia

Saints Zosimas the Hermit and Athanasios the Notary of Cilicia


Saint Sequanus of Mesmont

Saint Sequanus of Mesmont (+ c. 580)


Holy Prince Igor of Kiev and Chernigov

Holy Prince Igor of Kiev and Chernigov (+ 1147)


Holy Prince Theodore of Smolensk and his Children Saints David and Constantine

Holy Prince Theodore of Smolensk (+ 1299) and his Children Saints David and Constantine

Monday, September 18, 2017

Paulinus of Nola and the Distribution of a Relic of the True Cross


The first documented appearances of pieces of the True Cross in the West date from the very end of the fourth century and the beginning of the fifth century. An early reference suggests how they circulated. John, Bishop of Jerusalem, gave Melania the Elder, a pious wealthy aristocrat and generous donor to the Church, a piece of the True Cross. Upon her return to Italy from Jerusalem in 402, she gave a fragment of her fragment to her friend Bishop Paulinus of Nola (354-431); he in turn, in 403, sent "an atom" of his treasure on to his colleague Sulpicius Severus.

Saint Hilarion of Optina (+ 1873)

St. Hilarion of Optina (Feast Day - September 18)

Saint Hilarion (Ponamarov) was born in Kluch on the night of Pascha, April 8-9, 1805. Nikita and Euphemia Ponamarov named their third son Rodion in honor of Saint Herodion of the Seventy. He always considered April 8, the day of his patron saint’s commemoration, as his birthday. After Rodion, a son and a daughter were born to the Ponamarovs. The daughter, however, died as a baby.

Nikita Ponamarov worked in town as a tailor, and sometimes his business took him to the homes of the local landowners. Consequently, Rodion seldom saw his father until he was fifteen years old.

Rodion was a quiet, uncoordinated child who did not play much with other children, since they made fun of his clumsiness. Even members of his own family behaved in a rude manner toward him, and seldom showed him any affection. The way he was treated made him thoughtful and introspective.

Life and Miracles of our Holy Father Romylos of Ravanica


By Gregory of Constantinople

1. Nothing is as appropriate nor as worthy of the lovers of good things as to transmit through writing the achievements and struggles of saintly men who lived their life in a holy and God­-pleasing manner, and to narrate them so that posterity may be incited to follow and imitate them. For men, especially those of us who wish to remain according to the image of God, and have kept the eye of the soul sound, desire to be familiar with all praiseworthy and honorable things and desire to acquire them. It is good to see with the eyes of the soul the struggles of good men and champions of virtue, and from these struggles to draw profit. For when the laudable things become visible, they are shown to be worth seeking, and become desirable, and those who see them are moved to acquire them. And when the story of these things is transmitted from those who know to the ears of the audience, it brings no mean profit.

Saints and Feasts of September 18


On the eighteenth Eumenios the great-hearted died.

Venerable Eumenios the Wonderworker, Bishop of Gortyna

Saint Eumenios the Wonderworker, Bishop of Gortyna

Saint Eumenios of Gortyna as a Model for our Lives


Holy Martyr Ariadne of Phrygia

Saint Ariadne of Phrygia


Venerable Romylos of Ravanica

Saint Romylos of Ravanica (+ 1375)

Life and Miracles of our Holy Father Romylos of Ravanica


Venerable Hilarion of Optina

Saint Hilarion of Optina (+ 1873)


Icon of the Mother of God the Healer

Icon of the Mother of God the Healer

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