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Saints and Feasts of April 3

Friday, April 3, 2020

Saint Paul the Russian and his Wife as Models for our Lives

Holy New Martyr Paul the Russian (Feast Day - April 3)

By Protpresbyter Fr. George Papavarnavas

The neomartyr Paul was from Russia and lived in the seventeenth century. He was enslaved by the Tartars who brought him to Constantinople. There he was bought by a Christian, who then liberated him. Seeing a fellow Russian girl who had been enslaved, he bought her, liberated her, and they were married. Soon after their wedding, Paul, for an unknown reason, had epilepsy. His wife, who truly loved him, would not leave his side for even a minute. She stood by him and helped him in every possible way to heal him, without being hurt by his actions and words that he acted and said during his crisis. She brought him, with the help of her relatives, to the Church of the Theotokos known as Mouglouniou, and she supplicated her on behalf of his healing. The Panagia did not take long to answer her prayer, which was made out of love, intensity and pain, and she healed him. After Paul was healed, together with his wife, he thanked the Panagia and returned home. As soon as he left the church, however, certain fanatical Muslims, who did not forget some of the things he said during his crisis, arrested him and led him to the Turkish judge, accusing him of being a Muslim and renouncing his faith.

Saint Nektarios of Bezhetsk (+ 1492)

St. Nektarios of Bezhetsk (Feast Day - April 3)

Venerable Nektarios of Bezhetsk was a monastic of the Trinity-Sergiev Monastery. In the mid-fifteenth century he settled in a dense forest in the upper part of the Bezhetsk region, where he built himself a cell. With the strictest asceticism and ardent love of prayer, he attracted the favor of God and acquired the gift of discernment, which brought those who came to him spiritual benefit. The deeds and the spiritual wisdom of the monk attracted many to him also that wanted to live under his guidance.

Old Testament Readings for Great Lent: Day 25 - Friday

Isaiah 45:11-17

Thus says the Lord, the Holy One of Israel, and his Maker: "Will you question me about my children, or command me concerning the work of my hands? I made the earth, and created man upon it; it was my hands that stretched out the heavens, and I commanded all their host. I have aroused him in righteousness, and I will make straight all his ways; he shall build my city and set my exiles free, not for price or reward," says the Lord of hosts.

Kyra Sarakosti 2020 (Lady Lent 2020)

Thursday, April 2, 2020

"The Soap Police" (Metr. Hierotheos of Nafpaktos)

By Metropolitan Hierotheos of Nafpaktos and Agiou Vlasiou

March 2020

In confronting the coronavirus, experts point out that one of the first and most important precautions are the simple rules of hygiene, cleanliness, hand washing with soap and other liquids that kill germs and viruses.

I read an article by the Israeli author Yuval Noah Harari, in which he raises some issues related to the coronavirus, with the changes being made in all the various nations. The main point of the article is that there are two things that are the important choices we are facing today in relation to the new coronavirus. "The first is between totalitarian surveillance and citizen empowerment. The second is between nationalist isolation and global solidarity."

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