Friday, October 31, 2014

Cleopas, Apostle of the 70

October 30

Apolytikion in the Third Tone
O Holy Apostles, intercede to our merciful God, that He may grant our souls forgiveness of sins.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

Thursday, October 30, 2014

St Helen of Serbia

Commemorated on October 30

Saint Helen, a pious mother to her sons Stephen Milutin and Dragutin, devoted her whole life to pious deeds after the death of her husband. She built a shelter for the poor, and a monastery for those who wished to live in purity and virginity. Near the city of Spich, she built the Rechesk monastery and endowed it with the necessities.

Before her death, St Helen received monastic tonsure and departed to the Lord on February 8, 1306.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Anastasia the Martyr of Rome

October 29

Saint Anastasia, who was young in age and lived in a convent, was seized by the impious. Confessing Christ openly and with boldness and enduring manifold torments, she was beheaded in the year 256, during the reign of Valerian.

Kontakion in the Third Tone
Made most pure, O righteous one, with chaste virginity's waters, and washed in martyric blood, O Anastasia, thou grantest unto those in need the healing of every illness, and to those who come with love thou grantest salvation; for the well-spring of unfailing grace, even Christ God, bestoweth power on thee.



SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Martyr Africanus and 39 others of Carthage

Commemorated on October 28


 Bound together by natural bonds / And clothed with the might of faith, / You walked the path of martyrdom with your seven children. / O holy Martyrs Terrence and Neonilla, / Pray that those who honor your contest may receive forgiveness of their sins.


Today the memory of the martyrs / Is bringing gladness to all the faithful. / Let us fervently ask them for healing, / For they received this grace from the Spirit / To heal the infirmities and sickness of our souls.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Venerable Athanasius of Medikion Monastery

Saint Athanasius of Medikion Monastery (+ ca. 814) loved the monastic life and secretly left his parental home, but was forcibly returned by his father. After a certain time Athanasius entered the Medikion monastery in Bithynia with his father’s consent.

He was a companion of St Nicetas (April 3) and he died about the year 814. A cypress tree grew up on his grave; from which occurred many healings, by the grace of God.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

Saturday, October 25, 2014

St Tabitha the Widow, raised from the dead by the Apostle Peter

Commemorated on October 25

Saint Tabitha, the widow raised from the dead by the Apostle Peter, was a virtuous and kindly woman, belonged to the Christian community in Joppa. Being grievously ill, she suddenly died. At the time, the Apostle Peter was preaching at Lydda, not far from Joppa. Messengers were sent to him with an urgent request for help. When the Apostle arrived at Joppa, Tabitha was already dead. On bended knee, St Peter made a fervent prayer to the Lord. Then he went to the bed and called out, “Tabitha, get up!” She arose, completely healed (Acts 9:36).

St Tabitha is considered the patron saint of tailors and seamstresses, since she was known for sewing coats and other garments (Acts 9:39).


With the flow of the many-streamed river of almsgiving / You watered the dry earth of the needy. / Showering alms on the widows and the poor, / You shone with the light of your works / And were radiant with grace, O Tabitha. / Glory to Christ who loves you! / Glory to Christ who has blessed you! / Glory to Christ whom you followed as a true disciple and a spotless lamb!


You served the Savior in holiness / By your God-fearing deeds, / And were a model of love as his disciple. / O Tabitha, we praise your memory!



SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

Friday, October 24, 2014

St Athanasius the Patriarch of Constantinople

Saint Athanasius I, Patriarch of Constantinople (1289-1293; 1303-1311), in the world Alexius, was from Adrianopolis. While still in his youth, thriving upon the knowledge of the wisdom of Christ, he left his home and went to Thessalonica, where he was tonsured in one of the monasteries with the name Acacius. He soon withdrew to Mount Athos and entered the brethren of the Esphigmenou monastery, where for three years he served in the trapeza. In his works and his ascetic deeds he acquired the gift of tears, and by his virtuous acts he won the overall goodwill of the brethren.

Shunning praise, Acacius humbly left Mt. Athos at first for the holy places in Jerusalem, and then to Mount Patra, where for a long time he lived ascetically as an hermit. From there the ascetic transferred to the Auxention monastery, and then to Mount Galanteia to the monastery of Blessed Lazarus, where he accepted the great angelic schema with the name Athanasius, was ordained a priest and became ecclesiarch (monk in charge of the sacred relics and vessels in the church). Here the saint was granted a divine revelation: he heard the Voice of the Lord from a crucifix, summoning him to pastoral service.

Wishing to strengthen his spirit still more in silence and prayer, St Athanasius again settled on Mount Athos after ten years. But because of disorders arising there he returned to Mount Galanteia. Here also he was not long to remain in solitude. Many people thronged to him for pastoral guidance, and so he organized a women’s monastery there.

During this time the throne of the Church of Constantinople fell vacant after the disturbances and disorder of the period of the Patriarch John Bekkos. At the suggestion of the pious emperor Andronicus Paleologos, a council of hierarchs and clergy unanimously chose St Athanasius to the Patriarchal throne of the Church in 1289.

Patriarch Athanasius began fervently to fulfill his new obedience and did much for strengthening the Church. His strictness of conviction roused the dissatisfaction of influential clergy, and in 1293 he was compelled to resign the throne and to retire again to his own monastery, where he lived an ascetic life in solitude. In 1303 he was again entrusted with the staff of patriarchal service, which he worthily fulfilled for another seven years. In 1308 St Athanasius established St Peter as Metropolitan of Kiev and All Rus (December 21).

Again, because of some sort of dissatisfaction, and not wanting to be the cause of church discord, St Athanasius resigned the governance of the Church in 1311. He departed to his own monastery, devoting himself fully to monastic deeds.

Toward the end of his life, the saint was again found worthy to behold Christ. The Lord reproached him because Athanasius had not carried out his pastoral duty to the end. Weeping, the saint repented of his cowardice and received from the Lord both forgiveness and the gift of wonderworking. St Athanasius died at the age of 100.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

Thursday, October 23, 2014

James (Iakovos) the Apostle, brother of Our Lord

October 23

According to some, this Saint was a son of Joseph the Betrothed, born of the wife that the latter had before he was betrothed to the Ever-virgin. Hence he was the brother of the Lord, Who was also thought to be the son of Joseph (Matt. 13: 55). But some say that he was a nephew of Joseph, and the son of his brother Cleopas, who was also called Alphaeus and Mary his wife, who was the first cousin of the Theotokos. But even according to this genealogy, he was still called, according to the idiom of the Scriptures, the Lord's brother because of their kinship.

This Iakovos is called the Less (Mark 15:4) by the Evangelists to distinguish him from Iakovos, the son of Zebedee, who was called the Great. He became the first Bishop of Jerusalem, elevated to this episcopal rank by the Apostles, according to Eusebius (Eccl. Hist., Book II: 23), and was called Obliah, that is, the Just, because of his great holiness and righteousness. Having ascended the crest of the Temple on the day of the Passover at the prompting of all, he bore testimony from there concerning his belief in Jesus, and he proclaimed with a great voice that Jesus sits at the right hand of the great power of God and shall come again upon the clouds of heaven. On hearing this testimony, many of those present cried, "Hosanna to the Son of David." But the Scribes and Pharisees cried, "So, even the just one hath been led astray," and at the command of Ananias the high priest, the Apostle was cast down headlong from thence, then was stoned, and while he prayed for his slayers, his head was crushed by the wooden club wielded by a certain scribe. The first of the Catholic (General) Epistles written to the Jews in the Diaspora who believed in Christ was written by this Iakovos.

Apolytikion in the Fourth Tone
As the Lord's disciple, O righteous One, you received the Gospel, as Martyr, you have unwavering courage, as the Lord's brother, you have forthrightness, as Hierarch, intercession. Intercede with Christ our God, that our souls may be saved.

Kontakion in the Fourth Tone
O wondrous Iakovos, God the Logos, only-begotten of the Father, who dwelt among us in latter days, declared you, the first shepherd and teacher of Jerusalem, and faithful steward of the spiritual mysteries. Wherefore, we all honor you, O Apostle.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

St Alexander the Bishop and Heraclius the Soldier with the Women Martyrs Anna, Elizabeth, Theodota and Glyceria at Adrianopolis

Commemorated on October 22

The Martyrs Alexander the Bishop, Heraclius the Soldier, and Women Martyrs Anna, Elizabeth, Theodota and Glyceria at Adrianopolis were killed during the third century at Adrianopolis for their confession of Christ. This century is noted as a time of the spread of Christianity among the pagans. Despite the persecutions against the Christians, Bishop Alexander fearlessly converted and baptized many pagans into the holy saving faith.

The governor of the region where the saint lived, ordered his soldiers to use torture to force Bishop Alexander to deny Christ. The saint patiently endured terrible tortures. Struck by this, the soldier Heraclius believed in Christ, for Whom the saint suffered. And after him, the Women Martyrs Anna, Elizabeth, Theodota and Glyceria confessed themselves to be Christians.

St. Alexander the Bishop


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

Monday, October 20, 2014

Matrona the Righteous of Chios

October 20

Apolytikion in the Third Tone
[Faithfully] following the steps of Christ [our God], you left behind you all the pleasures of the world, and imitated in the flesh the lifestyle of the angels. Wherefore with the gifts bestowed by the Spirit you brightened up your homeland, the Island of Chios, O Maiden extolled by all. And therefore it cries out to you joyfully: Rejoice, O all-honorable Matrona.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Hieromartyr Sadoc (Sadoth) the Bishop of Persia and 128 Martyrs with Him

He was the hierarch of a Persian district. When the Persian emperor Sapor learned that Sadoc was preaching faith in Christ, he gave orders to arrest and imprison him together with 128 Christian believers. For several months they attempted to persuade the righteous martyrs to repudiate the holy Faith, but unable to accomplish this, they executed them.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

Saturday, October 18, 2014

St David of Serpukhov

Saint David of Serpukhov, a disciple of St Paphnutius of Borov (May 1), lived as a hermit at the River Lopasna, 23 versts from Serpukhov. In 1515, on the right bank of the river, he built a church dedicated to the Ascension, and laid the foundations of the Davidov wilderness monastery.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

Friday, October 17, 2014

Hosea the Prophet

October 17

According to some, Hosea, whose name means "God is help," was from the tribe of Issachar, or more likely, from that of Reuben; he was the son of Beeri. He is the first in order of the twelve minor Prophets and the most ancient of all. He prophesied in the days of the divided Kingdom; the Lord told him to take a harlot to wife (Hosea 1:2), and then an adulteress (ibid., 3:1). The harlot, a known sinner, was a figure of the Kingdom of Israel in Samaria, which openly worshipped idols; the adulteress, lawfully married yet sinning secretly with her lovers, was a figure of the Kingdom of Judah in Jerusalem, which, while having the Temple, and the priesthood, and the divine worship according to the Law, stealthily served the idols also. The Prophet Hosea prophesied for sixty years, and lived for some ninety years, from 810 to 720 B.C. His book is divided into fourteen chapters.

Apolytikion in the Second Tone
As we celebrate the memory of Thy Prophet Hosea, O Lord, through him we beseech Thee to save our souls.

Kontakion in the Plagal of the Fourth Tone
Initiated by divine illumination, thou wast deemed worthy of the lofty gift of prophecy and foretoldest of the promise of grace, O Prophet. O Hosea, since thou dwellest in God's glory now, do thou rescue from all manner of adversity us who cry to thee: Rejoice, thou vessel of grace divine.



SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Venerable Longinus the Gatekeeper of the Kiev Caves

Saint Longinus, the Gate-Keeper of the Kiev Caves, Far Caves, made his monastic obedience at the Kiev Caves monastery. His prayerful fervor and humble love for work were rewarded by the Lord. The venerable gatesman was granted the gift of discernment. He encouraged the people who came to the Lavra with good intent, but he denounced those inclined to wickedness and urged them to repentance. He was buried in the Far Caves.

St Longinus is also commemorated on August 28 and on the second Sunday of Great Lent.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Lucian the Martyr of Antioch

October 15

This Saint was from Samosata, the son of pious parents. He established a catechetical school in Antioch, and taught the correct doctrines of the Faith and made clear the parts of the divine Scriptures that were difficult to understand. He edited the Old Testament translation from the Hebrew tongue, and published it in an excellent edition, free from every heretical corruption and interpolation. He travelled to Nicomedia to strengthen the faithful there in their contests for Christ, and was accused before Maximinus, with whom he conversed openly. When he had made a defence of the Christian Faith, he was condemned to imprisonment where, in 311, he died of hunger and thirst.

Apolytikion in the Fourth Tone
Thy Martyr, O Lord, in his courageous contest for Thee received the prize of the crowns of incorruption and life from Thee, our immortal God. For since he possessed Thy strength, he cast down the tyrants and wholly destroyed the demons' strengthless presumption. O Christ God, by his prayers, save our souls, since Thou art merciful.

Kontakion in the Second Tone
We all gloriously acclaim thee with hymns, O Lucian, thou most brilliant luminary, who wast first illustrious in asceticism and then shonest forth in contest: Intercede unceasingly for us all.



SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Hieromartyr Silvanus of Gaza

The Holy Hieromartyr Silvanus of Gaza, was a native of the city of Gaza. He was first a soldier, then a priest. He was falsely accused of a crime and sentenced to labor in the copper mines. In spite of many tribulations, the saint did not renounce Christ. In his old age, he was beheaded together with forty other Christians.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

Monday, October 13, 2014

Martyr Florentius of Thessalonica

The Martyr Florentius was a native of Thessalonica. Zealous for the glory of God, he fearlessly unmasked the darkness of idolatry and led many to the light of true knowledge of God. He taught faith in Christ and fulfilled the will of God. For this the pagans subjected him to cruel tortures, and then burned him.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Icon of the Mother of God “Jerusalem”

Commemorated on October 12

The Jerusalem Icon of the Mother of God, by tradition, was painted by the holy Evangelist Luke fifteen years after the Ascension of the Lord at Gethsemane.

In the year 463, the icon was transferred to Constantinople. The Byzantine army carried the Jerusalem Icon into battle when they turned back an invasion of the Scythians. In 988 the icon was transferred to Korsun and given to the holy Prince Vladimir. When the people of Novgorod accepted Christianity, St Vladimir sent them this icon. In 1571, Ivan the Terrible transferred the icon to the Moscow Dormition cathedral. During the Napoleonic invasion of 1812, the original was stolen by the French and brought to Paris. An authenticated copy was placed in the Dormition cathedral.

The Jerusalem Icon is also commemorated on November 13, and on the Fifth Saturday of Great Lent.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Theophanes the Confessor, Bishop of Nicaea

October 11

Saint Theophanes, the brother of Saint Theodore the Branded, was a Palestinian by race. Both were monks at the Monastery of Saint Sabbas. They were called "the Branded" because Theophilus, the last of the Iconoclast emperors, had twelve iambic verses branded by hot irons on their foreheads and then sent them into exile, where Theodore died in the year 838. After the death of Theophilus in 842, Theophanes was elected Bishop of Nicaea. Both brothers composed many canons and hymns, thereby adorning the services of the Church.

Apolytikion in the Plagal of the Fourth Tone
You are a guide of Orthodoxy, a teacher of piety and modesty, a luminary of the world, the God inspired pride of monastics. O wise Theophanes, you have enlightened everyone by your teachings. You are the harp of the Spirit. Intercede to Christ our God for the salvation of our souls.

Kontakion in the Fourth Tone
To the Church thou hast appeared like a new daystar, for thou dost enlighten her with all thy doctrines' brilliant beams, O righteous Father Theophanes, since thou indeed art a true priest of Christ our God.



SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

Friday, October 10, 2014

Venerable Ambrose of Optina

Commemorated on October 10

Saint Ambrose of Optina

Alexander Michailovich Grenkov was born Nov. 23, 1812 in the Russian province of Tambov. His parents raised him strictly and with fervent piety. Since he was of a priestly family, it was no surprise when he entered the Tambov theological seminary in 1830. He did well in his studies and was ranked among the top students.

About a year before graduation Alexander became seriously ill. He promised that if God healed him, he would become a monk. Although his prayer was answered, Alexander seemed to forget his promise.

After graduation from the seminary he took a position as tutor to the children of a certain landowner and remained with this family for a year and a half. After this he became a teacher at the local parochial school.

One day in 1839 Alexander and a friend visited the famous hermit Father Hilarion to ask him what they should do with their lives. Alexander was surprised when he was told to go to the monastery of Optina Pustin, where they had great need of him. In September of that same year, however, he seemed to be prepared to continue with his teaching career.

One night he was invited to spend a pleasant evening with some friends. His conversation was witty and brilliant, and all his jokes and puns were on the mark. Although his hosts were amused and impressed by him, Alexander was disgusted by his own frivolity. Perhaps his unfulfilled promise to become a monk weighed on his conscience.

The next morning he quit his job and arrived at Optina in October of 1839. After a trial period he decided to remain in the monastery and dedicate his life to God. He received the monastic tonsure in 1842, and was given the name Ambrose in honor of St Ambrose of Milan (December 7). Ambrose knew the famous spiritual directors Elder Leonid and Elder Macarius. He was the cell attendant of Elder Macarius, who undoubtedly influenced the young monk’s spiritual development.

Ordained as a priest in 1845, Father Ambrose’s reverence and piety in celebrating the divine services were noticed by the other monks. His health began to decline shortly afterward, and he had to ask to be relieved of all duties. In 1846 he was so ill that the Mystery of Holy Unction was administered to him. He bore his illness without complaint and slowly regained his strength. By 1848 he was able to walk with the aid of a cane.

Father Ambrose began to help Elder Macarius with his correspondence and in preparing the Russian edition of St John Climacus’s LADDER OF DIVINE ASCENT, which was published by the monastery.

When Father Macarius had to go to Moscow in 1852, he designated Father Ambrose to take his place until his return. Father Ambrose never gave his personal opinions when he was asked for advice, but always referred people to the writings of the Fathers. If someone did not understand the text he was given to read, Father Ambrose would explain it in simple terms.

Father Macarius died in 1860 without naming anyone to succeed him as Elder. By divine providence, all the other possible candidates either died or were appointed as abbots of other monasteries. This left Father Ambrose as the undisputed spiritual director of the monastery. In his role as Elder, Father Ambrose had to receive many people each day to hear confessions and give advice. He used to say, “The Lord has arranged it so that I would have to talk to people all my life. Now I would be happy to remain silent, but I cannot.”

An average day in St Ambrose’s life began at 4 A.M. when his cell attendant came into his cell to read the morning Rule of prayer for him. After this he would wash and have some tea, then he would dictate replies to the many letters he received every day. Visitors would be lining up even as he was having breakfast. Sometimes he would take a break after two hours, but more often he would continue seeing people until noon when he had his lunch.

After lunch he would go out into the next room and greet more visitors. People would call out questions and he would give an appropriate response. He took a short rest at 3 P.M. then talked to people until the evening. At 8 P.M. he had dinner then received more visitors until 11 P.M. At that hour the evening Rule of prayer was read, and Father Ambrose begged forgiveness of the brethren whom he may have offended by thought, word, or deed. After three or four hours of sleep it would all begin again. This routine would fatigue a strong man. It is remarkable that St Ambrose, who was often in poor health, was able to keep it up for so many years.

From all over Russia, people flocked to the venerable Elder. The writer Tolstoy visited him on at least three occasions, and left impressed by the wisdom of the holy monk. Fyodor Dostoevsky came to Optina in 1878 after the death of his son Alyosha and was profoundly affected by his meeting with St Ambrose. The novelist used Father Ambrose as a model for Starets Zosima in The Brothers Karamazov.

The saint founded Shamordino convent in 1884. This convent, which was near Optina, opened its doors to women who were poor, sickly, or even blind. Most convents were very poor and had to rely on the incomes of women who had a certain personal wealth in order to remain open. St Ambrose made it possible for any woman who wished to become a nun to follow this path of salvation.

Shamordino began to decline after the death of the first abbess, Mother Sophia. St Ambrose went there in June 1890 to straighten out the convent’s affairs. He was unable to return to Optina due to illness, then winter made it impossible for him to travel. Father Ambrose continued to see visitors at Shamordino, even though his health continued to deteriorate in 1891.

By September, it was clear that he had not long to live. He fell asleep in the Lord at 11:30 A.M. on the morning of October 10 1891. Throngs of people attended his funeral and also his burial at Optina. Fathers Joseph, Anthony, Benedict, and Anatole succeeded him as Elder until the monastery was closed after the Russian Revolution.

The Moscow Patriarchate authorized local veneration of the Optina Elders on June 13,1996. The work of uncovering the relics of Sts Leonid, Macarius, Hilarion, Ambrose, Anatole I, Barsanuphius and Anatole II began on June 24/July 7, 1998 and was concluded the next day. However, because of the church Feasts (Nativity of St John the Baptist, etc.) associated with the actual dates of the uncovering of the relics, Patriarch Alexey II designated June 27/July 10 as the date for commemorating this event. The relics of the holy Elders now rest in the new church of the Vladimir Icon of the Mother of God.

The Optina Elders were glorified by the Moscow Patriarchate for universal veneration on August 7, 2000.
St Ambrose was glorified in 1988 by the Patriarchate of Moscow as part of the Millennium celebration of the Baptism of Rus.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

Thursday, October 09, 2014

Andronicus & his wife Athanasia of Egypt

October 9

Saints Andronicus and Athanasia were from Antioch, and finished their lives in asceticism about the year 500.

Apolytikion in the Plagal of the First Tone
Ye adorned your divinely-wrought robe of chastity with the sublime varied colours of sacred virtues in God, when with one accord ye strove in the ascetic life. Wherefore, your silence on the earth was received equally with the thrice-holy hymn in heaven; O wise Andronicus, pray God, with Athanasia, that we all be saved.

Kontakion in the Plagal of the Fourth Tone
Let us the faithful crown with laurels of befitting hymns the wise Andronicus, who lived in blameless righteousness, with the godly Athanasia, his spouse in Christ God; who have shown the type of lawful wedlock to the world and became divine examples of monastic life. Let us cry to them: Rejoice, O yoke-mates in holiness.



SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

Venerable Philotheus the Patriarch of Constantinople

Saint Philotheus was a native of Thessalonica, and received the monastic tonsure at an early age. After living for a time at Mt Sinai, he went to Mt Athos and became the igumen of the Great Lavra.

In 1347 he became Metropolitan of Heraclea, Thrace. Later, he served as Patriarch of Constantinople from 1354-1355, and again from 1364-1376.

While living on the Holy Mountain and even after he left there, St Philotheus wrote religious books which reveal his great learning and spirituality. Many of his works are directed against the anti-hesychasts, and he also wrote on liturgical and hagiographical themes.

St Philotheus ordained that St Gregory Palamas (November 14) be commemorated on the second Sunday of Great Lent, presided at his glorification as a saint, and even composed the Service in his honor.

St Philotheus fell asleep in the Lord in 1379.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

Tuesday, October 07, 2014

99 Martyred Fathers of Crete

Commemorated on October 7

These 99 martyrs were from Crete. The most prominent among them was called John, and he was known as a wonderworker. He knelt so much in prayer that he was not able to walk, and had to move about on his knees.

One day a woodsman saw him going about in this way. Thinking that it was some wild animal, he shot the saint with an arrow. It is said that the other ninety-eight Fathers also died on that same day.

It is not known when these holy ascetics lived.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

Monday, October 06, 2014

Glorification of St Innocent the Metropolitan of Moscow and Enlightener of the Aleuts, Apostle to the Americas

Commemorated on October 6

Glorification of St Innocent, Metropolitan of Moscow, Enlightener of the Aleuts and Apostle to America (in the world John Popov-Veniaminov), was born on August 26, 1797 in the village of Anginsk in the Irkutsk diocese, into the family of a sacristan. The boy mastered his studies at an early age and by age seven, he was reading the Epistle in church. In 1806 they sent him to the Irkutsk seminary. In 1814, the new rector thought it proper to change the surnames of some of the students. John Popov received the surname Veniaminov in honor of the deceased Archbishop Benjamin of Irkutsk (+ July 8, 1814). On May 13, 1817 he was ordained deacon for the Irkutsk Annunciation church, and on May 18, 1821, he was ordained priest.

The missionary service of the future Apostle of America and Siberia began with the year 1823. Father John spent 45 years laboring for the enlightenment of the peoples of Kamchatka, the Aleutian Islands, North America, Yakutsk, the Khabarov frontier, performing his apostolic exploit in severe conditions and at great risks to life. Saint Innocent baptized ten thousand people, and built churches, beside which he founded schools and he himself taught the fundamentals of the Christian life. His knowledge of various crafts and arts aided him in his work.

Father John was a remarkable preacher. During the celebration of the Liturgy, memorial services and the all-night Vigil, he incessantly guided his flock. During his time of endless travels, Father John studied the languages, customs and habits of the peoples, among whom he preached. His work in geography, ethnography and linguistics received worldwide acclaim. He composed an alphabet and grammar for the Aleut language and translated the Catechism, the Gospel and many prayers into that language. One of the finest of his works was the Indication of the Way into the Kingdom of Heaven (1833), translated into the various languages of the peoples of Siberia and appearing in more than 40 editions. Thanks to the toil of Father John, the Yakut people in 1859 first heard the Word of God and divine services in their own native language.

On November 29, 1840, after the death of his wife, Father John was tonsured a monk with the name Innocent by St Philaret, the Metropolitan of Moscow, in honor of St Innocent of Irkutsk. On December 15, Archimandrite Innocent was consecrated Bishop of Kamchatka, the Kurile and Aleutian Islands. On April 21, 1850 Bishop Innocent was elevated to the rank of archbishop.

By the Providence of God on January 5, 1868, St Innocent succeeded Metropolitan Philaret on the Moscow cathedra. Through the Holy Synod, Metropolitan Innocent consolidated the secular missionary efforts of the Russian Church (already in 1839 he had proposed a project for improving the organization of missionary service).

Under the care of Metropolitan Innocent a Missionary Society was created, and the Protection monastery was reorganized for missionary work. In 1870 the Japanese Orthodox Spiritual Mission headed by Archimandrite Nicholas Kasatkin (afterwards Saint Nicholas of Japan, (February 3) was set up, to whom St innocent had shared much of his own spiritual experience. The guidance by St Innocent of the Moscow diocese was also fruitful, by his efforts, the church of the Protection of the Most Holy Theotokos was built up into the Moscow Spiritual Academy.

St Innocent fell asleep in the Lord on March 31, 1879, on Holy Saturday, and was buried at the Holy Spirit Church of the Trinity-St Sergius Lavra. On October 6, 1977, St Innocent was glorified by the Russian Orthodox Church. His memory is celebrated three times during the year: on March 31, the day of his blessed repose, on October 5 (Synaxis of the Moscow Hierarchs), and on October 6, the day of his glorification.


O Holy Father Innocent / In obedience to the will of God / You accepted dangers and tribulations / Bringing many peoples to the knowledge of truth. / You showed us the way, / Now by your prayers help lead us into the Kingdom of Heaven.


You evangelized the northern people of America and Asia, / proclaiming the Gospel of Christ to the natives in their own tongues. / Holy Hierarch Father Innocent, / enlightener of Alaska and all America, / your ways were ordered by the Lord! / Pray to Him for the salvation of our souls in His heavenly Kingdom!


A true celebration of the providence and grace of God / Is your life, O holy father Innocent, Apostle to our land. / In hardships and dangers you toiled for the Gospel’s sake / And God delivered and preserved you unharmed. / From obscurity He highly exalted you as an example / That the Lord truly guides a man in the way he should go.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

Sunday, October 05, 2014

Hieromartyr Dionysius the Bishop of Alexandria

Commemorated on October 5

Saint Dionysius, Bishop of Alexandria, was the son of wealthy pagan parents. He converted to Christianity at a mature age, and became a pupil of Origen. Later, he was appointed as the head of Alexandria’s Catechetical School, and then became Bishop of Alexandria in the year 247.

St Dionysius devoted much effort to defend the Church from heresy, and he encouraged his flock in the firm confession of Orthodoxy during the persecution under the emperors Decius (249-251) and Valerian (253-259).

The holy bishop endured much suffering in his lifetime. When the Decian persecution broke out, St Dionysius was forced to flee Alexandria, but returned when the Emperor died. He was later exiled to Libya during the reign of Valerian.

When he was able to resume his duties in Alexandria in 261, St Dionysius had to contend with civil war, famine, plague, and other difficulties. The saint called upon his flock to tend sick Christians and pagans alike, and to bury the dead. Concerning the death of his spiritual children he wrote, “In such a manner the best of our brethren have departed this life. This generation of the dead, a deed of great piety and firm faith, is no less of a martyrdom.”

St Dionysius illumined his flock through his preaching, and with deeds of love and charity. An illness prevented him from attending the Council of Antioch (264- 265), and he fell asleep in the Lord while it was in session.

The influence of St Dionysius extended beyond the limits of his diocese, and his writings dealt with practical as well as theological subjects (“On Nature,” “On Temptations,” “On the Promises,” etc.). He was also familiar with Greek philosophy. Only fragments of his writings survive today, most of them preserved in Eusebius, who mentions him in his CHURCH HISTORY ( Book 7) and calls him “Dionysius the Great.”

Two complete letters of St Dionysius are extant, one addressed to Novatian, and the other to Basilides.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

Friday, October 03, 2014

Martyr Rusticus the Presbyter and Martyr Eleutherius the Deacon

Commemorated on October 3

Saint Rusticus and Saint Eleutherius were  disciples of St Dionysius the Areopagite. They suffered martyrdom in Athens during the persecution of the emperor Domitian (81-96).


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

Thursday, October 02, 2014

Venerable Cassian of Uglich

Saint Cassian the Greek of Uglich, in the world Constantine, was a descendant of the Greek Mangupa princes. He arrived in Moscow as part of the delegation to Great Prince Ivan III, together with the daughter of the Byzantine emperor, Sophia Paleologa.

Having decided to devote his life to the service of God, the saint declined the offer to remain at the court of the Great Prince, and he resettled near Bishop Joasaph of Rostov. When the bishop withdrew to the Therapon monastery for solitude, Constantine followed him, and he led a strict ascetic life.

He accepted monasticism after a miraculous vision by night of St Martinian, urging him to take monastic tonsure. After a certain period of time, St Cassian left the monastery going not far from the city of Uglich, near the confluence of the Volga and Uchma Rivers, where he founded a monastery in honor of the Dormition of the Mother of God.

Reports of the monk spread widely, and many people began to come to receive his blessing, to see the wilderness habitation and converse with him. St Cassian accepted everyone with love, guiding them on the way to salvation with quiet words.

The monk died in great old age on October 2, 1504. In the Uglich Chronicles many miracles of the saint were recorded. In particular, the protection of his monastery from Polish soldiers in the years 1609-1611 by his prayers.

The memory of St Cassian of Uglich is celebrated also on May 21, the day he shares with his namesake, the holy Emperor Constantine the Great.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

The Protection of our Most Holy Lady the Mother of God and Ever-Virgin Mary

Commemorated on October 1

The Protection of the Most Holy Theotokos: "Today the Virgin stands in the midst of the Church, and with choirs of Saints she invisibly prays to God for us. Angels and Bishops venerate Her, Apostles and prophets rejoice together, Since for our sake she prays to the Eternal God!"

This miraculous appearance of the Mother of God occurred in the mid-tenth century in Constantinople, in the Blachernae church where her robe, veil, and part of her belt were preserved after being transferred from Palestine in the fifth century.

On Sunday, October 1, during the All Night Vigil, when the church was overflowing with those at prayer, the Fool-for-Christ St Andrew (October 2), at the fourth hour, lifted up his eyes towards the heavens and beheld our most Holy Lady Theotokos coming through the air, resplendent with heavenly light and surrounded by an assembly of the Saints. St John the Baptist and the holy Apostle John the Theologian accompanied the Queen of Heaven. On bended knees the Most Holy Virgin tearfully prayed for Christians for a long time. Then, coming near the Bishop's Throne, she continued her prayer.

After completing her prayer she took her veil and spread it over the people praying in church, protecting them from enemies both visible and invisible. The Most Holy Lady Theotokos was resplendent with heavenly glory, and the protecting veil in her hands gleamed "more than the rays of the sun." St Andrew gazed trembling at the miraculous vision and he asked his disciple, the blessed Epiphanius standing beside him, "Do you see, brother, the Holy Theotokos, praying for all the world?" Epiphanius answered, "I do see, holy Father, and I am in awe."

The Ever-Blessed Mother of God implored the Lord Jesus Christ to accept the prayers of all the people calling on His Most Holy Name, and to respond speedily to her intercession, "O Heavenly King, accept all those who pray to You and call on my name for help. Do not let them not go away from my icon unheard."

Sts Andrew and Epiphanius were worthy to see the Mother of God at prayer, and "for a long time observed the Protecting Veil spread over the people and shining with flashes of glory. As long as the Most Holy Theotokos was there, the Protecting Veil was also visible, but with her departure it also became invisible. After taking it with her, she left behind the grace of her visitation."

At the Blachernae church, the memory of the miraculous appearance of the Mother of God was remembered. In the fourteenth century, the Russian pilgrim and clerk Alexander, saw in the church an icon of the Most Holy Theotokos praying for the world, depicting St Andrew in contemplation of her.

The Primary Chronicle of St Nestor reflects that the protective intercession of the Mother of God was needed because an attack of a large pagan Russian fleet under the leadership of Askole and Dir. The feast celebrates the divine destruction of the fleet which threatened Constantinople itself, sometime in the years 864-867 or according to the Russian historian Vasiliev, on June 18, 860. Ironically, this Feast is considered important by the Slavic Churches but not by the Greeks.

The Primary Chronicle of St Nestor also notes the miraculous deliverance followed an all-night Vigil and the dipping of the garment of the Mother of God into the waters of the sea at the Blachernae church, but does not mention Sts Andrew and Epiphanius and their vision of the Mother of God at prayer. These latter elements, and the beginnings of the celebrating of the Feast of the Protection, seem to postdate St Nestor and the Chronicle. A further historical complication might be noted under (October 2) dating St Andrew's death to the year 936.

The year of death might not be quite reliable, or the assertion that he survived to a ripe old age after the vision of his youth, or that his vision involved some later pagan Russian raid which met with the same fate. The suggestion that St Andrew was a Slav (or a Scythian according to other sources, such as S. V. Bulgakov) is interesting, but not necessarily accurate. The extent of Slavic expansion and repopulation into Greece is the topic of scholarly disputes.

In the PROLOGUE, a Russian book of the twelfth century, a description of the establishment of the special Feast marking this event states, "For when we heard, we realized how wondrous and merciful was the vision... and it transpired that Your holy Protection should not remain without festal celebration, O Ever-Blessed One!"

Therefore, in the festal celebration of the Protection of the Mother of God, the Russian Church sings, "With the choirs of the Angels, O Sovereign Lady, with the venerable and glorious prophets, with the First-Ranked Apostles and with the Hieromartyrs and Hierarchs, pray for us sinners, glorifying the Feast of your Protection in the Russian Land." Moreover, it would seem that St Andrew, contemplating the miraculous vision was a Slav, was taken captive, and became the slave of the local inhabitant of Constantinople named Theognostus.

Churches in honor of the Protection of the Mother of God began to appear in Russia in the twelfth century. Widely known for its architectural merit is the temple of the Protection at Nerl, which was built in the year 1165 by holy Prince Andrew Bogoliubsky. The efforts of this holy prince also established in the Russian Church the Feast of the Protection of the Mother of God, about the year 1164.

At Novgorod in the twelfth century there was a monastery of the Protection of the Most Holy Theotokos (the so-called Zverin monastery) In Moscow also under Tsar Ivan the Terrible the cathedral of the Protection of the Mother of God was built at the church of the Holy Trinity (known as the church of St Basil the Blessed).

On the Feast of the Protection of the Most Holy Theotokos we implore the defense and assistance of the Queen of Heaven, "Remember us in your prayers, O Lady Virgin Mother of God, that we not perish by the increase of our sins. Protect us from every evil and from grievous woes, for in you do we hope, and venerating the Feast of your Protection, we magnify you."

Troparion - Tone 4

Today the faithful celebrate the feast with joy illumined by your coming, O Mother of God.  Beholding your pure image we fervently cry to you:"Encompass us beneath the precious veil of your protection; deliver us from every form of evil by entreating Christ,your Son and our God that He may save our souls."

Kontakion - Tone 3

Today the Virgin stands in the midst of the Church and with choirs of saints she invisibly prays to God for us.Angels and bishops worship,apostles and prophets rejoice together,since for our sake she prays to the pre-eternal God.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2013(with 2012's link here also and further, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and even 2007!)