August 31, 2014

Saints and Feasts of August

The Month of August in the Orthodox Church

Martyrology of the Month of August (Fresco)

First Sunday of August - Saints and Feasts of the First Sunday of August

1 - Saints and Feasts of August 1

What I Looked For and Found in the Orthodox Church

By His Eminence Metropolitan Nicholas
of Mesogaia and Lavreotiki

In the Church I met rare people, with virtue and authenticity, mature, cultured, true Christians, gentle souls. I met, dare I say, saints. I did not meet such people generally in my life. These Christians stood out differently from other people. I have to admit, I never saw signs or miracles. They were not needed.

August 30, 2014

Hieromartyr Kosmas the Aitolos (+ 1779) [1 of 2]

St. Kosmas Aitolos (Feast Day - August 24)

By Monk Moses the Athonite

The great Equal to the Apostles, the enlightener of the enslaved Nation, the wondrous, holy, glorious and beloved by the people Hieromartyr, was born in the village of Mega Dendron of Aitolia in 1714. Specifically he was from between the villages of Mega Dendron and Taxiarchae of the Trichonida Mountains in a district called Apokouro. His parents were from Epirus: "The parents of a pious son, by whom he was brought up and educated in the education and admonition of the Lord, as the Apostle says."

How One Is Led From Unbelief To Belief

By Elder Teofil Paraian

I don't know if anyone can say that they led someone else to faith by their own power.

I have followed cases, as much as I am able, where people were led to the knowledge of God back in the olden days and in our time now. As many cases as I was able to follow I learned from.

August 29, 2014

Saint John the Baptist Resource Page

September 5 - Holy Prophet Zechariah and his Wife Elizabeth 
September 23 - Conception of Saint John the Forerunner 
January 6 - Theophany

January 7 - Synaxis of Saint John the Forerunner


February 24 - 1st and 2nd Finding of the Head of St. John the Forerunner
May 25 - 3rd Finding of the Head of Saint John the Forerunner

June 24 - Nativity of Saint John the Forerunner

August 29 - Beheading of Saint John the Forerunner

Relics and Miracles of Saint John the Forerunner




Shrines of Saint John the Forerunner



The Attributes of the Honorable Forerunner and Baptist John

By His Eminence Metropolitan Hierotheos
of Nafpaktos and Agiou Vlasiou

When the priest, my beloved brethren, does the dismissal of the Divine Liturgy and every other service, he commemorates after Christ various saints in the following order, namely the Panagia and Mother of Christ, the Honorable Cross, the Angels, the Honorable Forerunner and Baptist, the Apostles, the Martyrs, the venerable Fathers, the saints of the day and lastly all the saints. It thus seems clear that the Honorable Forerunner has a high position, between the Panagia and the Apostles. And this shows the great importance the Church gives to the person of the Honorable Forerunner.

August 28, 2014

A Conversation With Elder Ephraim of Arizona

The following conversation was recorded by monastic spiritual children from Greece of Elder Ephraim of Arizona, formerly of Philotheou, who visited him in May 2014 at the Sacred Monastery of Saint Anthony the Great in Arizona.

August 27, 2014

When the Panagia Wept Before World War I and World War II in Rhodes

By John Sanidopoulos

Panagia Katholiki was built over the ruins of an ancient Byzantine church, and according to an inscription over the door of the narthex it was built in 1839. The epithet "Katholiki" implies that she is universally venerated.

Last week a strange phenomenon took place in Kremasti, Rhodes in the Cathedral of Panagia Katholiki a few days before its feast, which celebrates annually on August 23rd in honor of the Apodosis of the Dormition of the Theotokos. An oil lamp hanging in front of the icon of the Panagia began to swing without ceasing, causing hundreds of Rhodians and beyond to come and witness the strange phenomenon and venerate the Panagia.

The Life and Lore of Saint Phanourios

St. Phanourios the Great Martyr and Newly Revealed (Feast Day - August 27)

By Dr. Helen Rossidou-Koutsou (Philologist - Byzantinist)

Little and vague is our knowledge from written tradition concerning the life of Saint Phanourios (as shown by his synaxarion).

His holy icon was found accidentally on August 27th sometime after 1350, in the ruins of a church in Rhodes. Since then it was established to celebrate the Saint on the day of the discovery of his icon.

August 26, 2014

Pouqueville on Greek Fasting Practices in 1798

Francois Pouqueville in front of Ioannina (Collection du Chateau de Versailles)

When Francois Pouqueville was held hostage by the Turks in Ottoman Greece in 1798, he gained the respect of the Turks and Greeks alike as a physician, treating and curing the people who were unaware of French medical techniques. One of the practices of the impoverished and enslaved Greeks that made him question their sanity was their rigorous faithfulness and honor of the fasts of the Orthodox Church, despite having practically nothing to eat otherwise. The following is taken from his book Travels in Greece and Turkey (ch. 12):

August 25, 2014

Thoughts and Opinions on Peace from Orthodox Christian Youth

The Association of Orthodox Youth of the Sacred Metropolis of Ierissos, with the prayers of His Eminence Metropolitan Theoklitos, organized the 12th Functional Youth Meeting at the Sacred Shrine of Megali Panagia in Halkidiki, titled "Peace in our Troubled World", in August 2014.

There they studied peace with God, peace with themselves, peace with others and peace in the Church. There were also extensive discussions.

Some thoughts and opinions were very important. We have written them down, offered them and distributed them for the youth of our age.

August 24, 2014

Sunday as the Lord's Day According to St. Kosmas the Aitolos

Sacred Metropolis of Gortynos and Megalopoleos
Dimitsana - Megalopolis

Sunday 24 August 2014

A Sermon of the Metropolitan

1. Today, my Christian brethren, the 24th of August, our holy Church celebrates the memory of a great Saint, that of the Holy Hieromartyr and Equal to the Apostles Kosmas the Aitolos. He was an Athonite Hieromonk who was pained when he heard that many Christians in our enslaved Greek nation were uncatechized, and thus they changed their beliefs. This is why, with the blessing of his Elder, he left the Monastery and went on an apostolic journey, which brought him to be martyred for the love of Christ.

The Panagia is Making Her Presence Known in Rhodes

On Wednesday, 20 August 2014, Orthodox faithful in the Sacred Church of Panagia Katholiki in Kremasti, Rhodes were speaking of a miracle they all witnessed.

More specifically and according to what has so far become known, a tall woman dressed in the black of an employee at a security company entered the church on Wednesday night. She went to the central oil lamp hanging before the icon of the Panagia and gave it a swing, then she left the church and disappeared without being noticed by those in attendance.

August 23, 2014

Icon of St. Innocent of Moscow Begins Weeping at Khabarovsk Orthodox Seminary

On August 20th a strange phenomenon was witnessed in Khabarovsk when it was observed that the icon of the patron of the Theological School in the region, Saint Innocent (Veniaminov) of Moscow and missionary to Alaska, began weeping. This icon is in the chapel of the seminary.

August 22, 2014

The Unique Fresco of the Smiling Panagia in Cappadocia

A unique fresco from the 11th century in the Central Anatolian Gumusler Monastery, also called Eski Gumus (Old Silver) Monastery, depicts the Virgin Mary and the Christ Child smiling. This famous rock-cut Monastery was only rediscovered in 1963 and the smile may have been added during the restoration process.

The Place of the Theotokos in the Orthodox Church (2 of 2)

Question: The Fathers, speaking the language of theology with inspiration, have established "She Who is Wider Than the Heavens" (Πλατυτέρα των Ουρανών) as being between that which is created and that which is uncreated. What does this mean?

August 21, 2014

That the Qualities of the Soul Exist by the Grace of God

By St. John of Damascus

The soul, accordingly, is a living essence, simple, incorporeal, invisible in its proper nature to bodily eyes, immortal, reasoning and intelligent, formless, making use of an organized body, and being the source of its powers of life, and growth, and sensation, and generation, nous being but its purest part and not in any wise alien to it; (for as the eye to the body, so is the nous to the soul); further it enjoys freedom and volition and energy, and is mutable, that is, it is given to change, because it is created. 

The Place of the Theotokos in the Orthodox Church (1 of 2)

The following is taken from an interview on a Cypriot radio station in May of 1989 with Archimandrite Vasilios of Iveron.

Question: A famous hymn of our Church calls the Panagia "heaven": "She showed herself to be the heaven and temple of divinity" (Αὕτη γὰρ ἀνεδείχθη οὐρανὸς καὶ ναὸς τῆς θεότητος). Fr. Vasilios, would you like to discuss a little the place of "She Who is Wider Than the Heavens" (Πλατυτέρα των Ουρανών) in our Orthodox Church?

August 20, 2014

Eldress Anastasia and the Monastery of Our Lady of the Angels in Kerkyra

The Monastery of Our Lady of the Angels is in the village of Riglades in the southern part of the island of Corfu (Kerkyra).

An inscription in the Monastery indicates it was constructed in 1656, but sources say it was built between 1696-1700 by the family of Barlaam Kapodistrias to honor the Panagia who saved his sons from drowning.

Homily on the Prophet Samuel, the Fruit of Noetic Prayer (Metr. Hierotheos of Nafpaktos)

Holy Prophet Samuel (Feast Day - August 20)

By Metropolitan Hierotheos of Nafpaktos and Agiou Vlasiou

The person of the Prophet Samuel, who we celebrate today, holds a great place in the Old Testament, as well as in the Church of Christ. He is one of those people who paved the way for the incarnation of the Son and Word of God and was obedient in all things to the will of God throughout his life. In today's homily we will highlight some points of his life.

"The Seer: The Life of the Prophet Samuel and its Relevance Today" (New Book by Metr. Hierotheos of Nafpaktos)

The Seer describes the life and work of the Prophet Samuel, called ‘the Seer’ and ‘the man of God’ by his contemporaries, who lived in the period of the Old Testament and is a saint of our Church (Aug. 20).

The author examines the fascinating life of the Prophet and uses events from it to illustrate the relationships between parents and children, spiritual fathers and their disciples, and rulers and those they rule from a theological perspective.

August 19, 2014

An Eye-Witness Testimonial About the Annual Bright Cloud of Mount Tabor

Every year on August 6th according to the Julian Calendar followed by the Patriarchate of Jerusalem, a bright cloud descends on Mount Tabor during the All-Night Vigil Service for the Feast of the Holy Transfiguration of Christ.

The following testimony comes from an older couple who travelled to the Holy Land a few years ago, and the husband was moved when he recounted his experience on Mount Tabor.

Saint Kosmas Aitolos Honored in the Village of Tsouka Where He Preached

To celebrate the 300th anniversary of the birth of the great missionary and martyr St. Kosmas the Aitolos, the village of Tsouka in western Fthiotida took the opportunity to honor him on Sunday August 17th. 

200 People Baptized Orthodox in the Nyamazi River of Rwanda

Georges Mana
August 18, 2014

News from the Orthodox Diocese of Burundi and Rwanda:

Today on 17th August 2014, His Grace Bishop Innocentios Byakatonda has baptized 200 people in the Nyamazi River located in the Kirehe District of the Eastern Province of Rwanda. After the baptism His Grace Bishop Innocentios conducted the Divine Liturgy in that valley where over 800 people were present.

August 18, 2014

Rocket Dropped in Orthodox Church in Ukraine Does Not Explode (photos)

Porphyry D. Staphyla
August 17, 2014
Dimpe News

On the night of the 16th into the 17th of August, the Church of the Holy Apostles Peter and Paul in the town of Mospyne in the region of Dontesk was hit by a rocket 1.5 meters in length by a Grad missile launcher. It entered the church after a strange orbit.

First Divine Liturgy Since 1922 Takes Place in the Last Surviving Orthodox Church in Smyrna

Stratis Balaskas
August 18, 2014

A historic moment was experienced on Sunday morning in Smyrna (Izmir) for those who attended the first Divine Liturgy since 1922 in the renovated Church of Saint Boukolos (Ayavukla). This church is dedicated to the patron saint of Smyrna and is the only Orthodox Christian Church to not burn in the catastrophe of 1922. It is located in the district of Basmane and was recently renovated by the City of Izmir. From 1922 until the renovation it was used as a warehouse then as a classical music concert hall and opera house, and later initially as an archaeological museum and then as a repository of antiquities, until it was repaired.

Saints Floros and Lavros as Models for our Lives

Sts. Floros and Lavros (Feast Day - August 18)

By Protopresbyter Fr. George Papavarnavas

Saints Floros and Lavros were twin brothers. They entered life on the same day and they also departed it on the same day, after giving their testimony for Christ and sealing it with the blood of their martyrdom. They lived in the first Christian centuries during a period of persecution, however it is unknown exactly when. They came from Byzantium and were catechized in the faith of Christ by Saints Proclus and Maximus, who were also martyred for Christ. Also, from these Saints they were also taught the art of stonemasonry, which they practiced and made their livelihood with. After the martyrdom of their teachers they left for Illyria and settled in the city of Ulpiana, where they continued practicing their trade. The prefect admired their skills and gave them a blueprint and the required money to build a temple to idols. The Saints distributed the money to the poor and when they built the temple - by the Grace of God and with the help of an angel, who helped and served them - they demolished the idols with the poor, and they consecrated the temple and dedicated it to the worship of the true God.

August 17, 2014

Fr. John Romanides Resource Page

"My good friend, the most pious Presbyter John Romanides, is not an ordinary theologian. He learned theology in two or three Universities and with the help of asceticism which illumined his soul. He knows four languages and is deeply educated. He is literally a monk, fed by the Holy Fathers and the holy liturgical life of the Orthodox Church, singing hymns to God 'seven times a day'."

- Elder Theoklitos Dionysiatis (Athonite Flowers, 1962)

"Take every class you can from Fr. John Romanides. He teaches the truth."

- Elder Aimilianos of Simonopetra (advice to a theology student)


Theology in Greece in the 1960's

Eldress Eulambia Romanides (+ 1980)

Saint Paisios the Athonite and the Clairvoyant Eldress Eulambia Romanides


The Repose of Fr. John Romanides (+11/01/2001)

Recordings and Eulogies from the Funeral of Fr. John Romanides (November 6, 2001)

The Relationship and Correspondence Between Fr. George Florovsky and Fr. John Romanides

My Teacher Fr. John Romanides and my Spiritual Father Fr. George Florovsky

Not A Licensed Theologian

Talking About The Devil

New Book About Fr. John Romanides' Orthodox Dogmatics Presented In Athens

The Theological Legacy of Fr. John Romanides Ten Years After His Repose

Metropolitan Hierotheos of Nafpaktos Lecture on Fr. John Romanides (video)

The Recent Repose of the Lay Theologian Athanasios Sakarellos


The Theological Works of Fr. John Romanides

Contemporary Theological Movements in Orthodoxy (Metr. Hierotheos of Nafpaktos)

Prophetic Themes in the Orthodox Ecclesiology of Fr John Romanides

The Application of Orthodox Theology

The Polemical Nature of Theology

The Orthodox Approach to Apologetics and Theological Knowledge

A Question Concerning the Knowledge of God and Orthodox Gnosiology

Can We Know God Through Mathematics?

The Faith of the Mind and the Faith of the Heart

How To Interpret Holy Scripture as an Orthodox Theologian

Fr. John Romanides, the Angel of Great Counsel, and Iconography

The Messiah in the Old and New Testaments

Theosis in the New Testament is called "Glorification"

The Term 'Kingdom of God' Is Not In the New Testament

"That They All May Be One" Patristically Explained

Salvation According to Saint Paul

Salvation and Ethics in St. Ignatius of Antioch

Purification, Illumination and Glorification Are EVERYTHING in Orthodoxy (1 of 3)

Purification, Illumination and Glorification Are EVERYTHING in Orthodoxy (2 of 3)

Purification, Illumination and Glorification Are EVERYTHING in Orthodoxy (3 of 3)

Does Baptism Really Make a Person the Temple of God?

Who Can Receive Holy Communion Every Sunday?

The Criterion for Whether of Not the Church is in a Good State

What are the Criteria for an Ecumenical Synod?

The Myth of Only Seven Ecumenical Councils

The Basis of the Acceptance of the Tome of Leo (Fr. John Romanides)

God and the Devil

Justin Martyr and the Fourth Gospel

Why We Read the Gospel of John After Pascha and Not Before

"The Life in Christ" by Fr. John Romanides

"On the Church" by Fr. John Romanides

The Ecclesiology of St. Ignatius of Antioch

Apostolic Tradition and Apostolic Succession in the Mystery of the Church

The Purpose of Man According to the Greek Fathers

The Theological School of the Apostolic Church

Who Is A Saint? (Fr. John Romanides)

That the Qualities of the Soul Exist by the Grace of God

What is the Difference Between Orthodox Christians and Heretics?

Is Saint Augustine of Hippo A Father of the Church?

A Response To Errors About Fr. John Romanides in the Book "Orthodox Readings of Augustine"

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

Saint Patrick and Unceasing Prayer of the Heart

The Areopagite in 20th Century Orthodoxy

Dialogue Between A Scholastic Theologian and an Orthodox Theologian

"Mystical" Theology or "Secret" Theology

Why The Filioque Is A Heresy

Protopresbyter John Romanides's Teaching on Creation

Do the Saints Have Unerring Knowledge of Scientific Matters?

Scientific Progress as Related to Frankish Civilization and Romanity

Scientific Progress, Frankish Civilization and Romanity

Fr. John Romanides on the Creation of the World and Man (1 of 6)

Fr. John Romanides on the Creation of the World and Man (2 of 6)

Fr. John Romanides on the Creation of the World and Man (3 of 6)

Fr. John Romanides on the Creation of the World and Man (4 of 6)

Fr. John Romanides on the Creation of the World and Man (5 of 6)

Fr. John Romanides on the Creation of the World and Man (6 of 6)

Christian Perfection and the Mystery of the Cross (1 of 3)

Christian Perfection and the Mystery of the Cross (2 of 3)

Christian Perfection and the Mystery of the Cross (3 of 3)

The Mystery of Pentecost According to Fr. John Romanides

Two Introductory Books on Modern Orthodox Spirituality Recommended by Fr. John Romanides


Fr. John Romanides as a Historian

The Term "Romiosini" According to Fr. John Romanides

Orthodoxy as the Official Religion of the Roman State

The Days of the Schism of 1054 (1 of 6)

The Days of the Schism of 1054 (2 of 6)

The Days of the Schism of 1054 (3 of 6)

The Days of the Schism of 1054 (4 of 6)

The Days of the Schism of 1054 (5 of 6)

The Days of the Schism of 1054 (6 of 6)

The Donation of Constantine

Fr. John Romanides on Robin Hood and Orthodoxy

Scientific Progress, Frankish Civilization and Romanity

A Greek or a Roman Revolution?

The Revival of Romiosini in the Thought of Romanides and Yannaras


A Greek Orthodox View of Ecumenism (1 of 2)

A Greek Orthodox View of Ecumenism (2 of 2)

Fr. John Romanides and Neo-Barlaamism

The Prophetic Letter of Fr. John Romanides to Fr. Theoklitos Dionysiatis

Elder Ephraim of the Holy Mountain and Arizona

Fr. John Romanides' Encounter With the Zoe Brotherhood

The Three Hierarchs and the Greek Emphasis on Hellenism

Fr. John Romanides On Moralism

Is Orthodoxy a Religion?

The Birth of Christ Celebrates the End of the Sickness of Religion

Fr. John Romanides on Extraterrestrial Alien Life

"For the Sake of the World: The Spirit of Buddhist and Christian Monasticism" (Book Review by Fr. John Romanides)

On So-Called Neo-Chalcedonianism

A Critique of the Holy Synod in Resistance

On the Application of the Term "Theologoumenon"

Gregory Palamas in Eastern and Western Theological Thought: A Summary

Neopatristic, Postpatristic and Contextual "Theology"

The Dangers of Parisian Theology

Nationalism in the Conflict Between Muslims and Romans

On Conservatives and Liberals

National Healthcare and the Church-State Relationship in Byzantium

The Diplomatic Potential of Romanity in the 21st Century

August 16, 2014

Life and Veneration of Saint Stamatios of Volos (+ 1680)

St. Stamatios of Volos (Feast Day - August 16)

Biography and Martyrdom

Information about the life of Saint Stamatios come from three sources: his contemporary John Kariophyllis, who wrote a short account about the Neomartyr, Saint Nikodemos the Hagiorite also wrote about him in his New Martyrology, in which he refers to his source John Kariophyllis but also indicates a different date for his martyrdom, and the Athonite monk Iakovos Kophos of New Skete, who along with the martyrdom also wrote a Service of Praise in his honor in 1860.

A Tenth Century Icon of the Holy Mandylion from Sinai

By Hierodeacon Silouan Peponakis

In the Old Testament, in the books of 1 and 2 Deuteronomy, there is clear reference to the prohibition of the worship of other gods, as well as a prohibition against the depiction of divine images as a prerequisite to the realization of this divine commandment given to the chosen people for their entrance into the Land of Promise. The Promised Land is a prefigurement, an image of the Kingdom of God (Leonid Ouspensky, The Theology of the Icon in the Orthodox Church).

August 15, 2014

Dormition of the Theotokos Resource Page


That the world-saving Maiden died is no marvel,
Since, in the flesh, the world’s Maker died also.
God’s Mother lives forever, though she died on the fifteenth.
The Holy Cross (August 1-15)
August 1 - Synaxis of Panagia Tavriotissa
August 6 - Transfiguration of Christ
August 12 - Annunciation of the Metastasis of the Theotokos
About the Feast of the Dormition   
Homilies on the Dormition 
Liturgical Services of the Dormition
August 15th Celebrations On Mount Athos
August 15th Celebrations In Cyprus
August 15th Celebrations In Asia Minor
August 15th Celebrations In the Holy Land
August 15th Celebrations In Bulgaria
August 15th Celebrations in Serbia
August 15th Celebrations In Romania
August 15th Celebrations In Russia
August 15th Celebrations In Georgia 
August 18 - Panagia Pantanassa (Celebrated this day in Russia)
August 19 - Donskoi Icon of the Mother of God
August 23 - Apodosis of the Feast of the Dormition
August 31 - The Placement of the Holy Zoni of the Theotokos