Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Apostle James, the Son of Alphaeus

Commemorated on June 30

The Synaxis of the Glorious and All-Praiseworthy Twelve Apostles of Christ appears to be an ancient Feast. The Church honors each of the Twelve Apostles on separate dates during the year, and has established a general commemoration for all of them on the day after the commemoration of the Glorious and First-Ranked among the Apostles Peter and Paul.

The holy, glorious, all-laudable Apostle James, the son of Alphaeus, is also commemorated on October 9.

For lists of the Apostles’ names, see: Mt.10:2, Mark 3:14, Luke 6:12, Acts 1:13, 26.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2014(with 2013's link here also and further:, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and even 2008!):

Monday, June 29, 2015

The Holy Glorious and All-Praised Leaders of the Apostles, Peter and Paul

Commemorated on June 29

Sermon of Saint Augustine, Bishop of Hippo

Today the Holy Church piously remembers the sufferings of the Holy Glorious and All-Praised Apostles Peter and Paul.

St. Peter, the fervent follower of Jesus Christ, for the profound confession of His Divinity: "Thou art the Christ, the Son of the Living God," was deemed worthy by the Savior to hear in answer, "Blessed art thou, Simon ... I tell thee, that thou art Peter [Petrus], and on this stone [petra] I build My Church" (Mt.16:16-18). On "this stone" [petra], is on that which thou sayest: "Thou art the Christ, the Son of the Living God" it is on this thy confession I build My Church. Wherefore the "thou art Peter": it is from the "stone" [petra] that Peter [Petrus] is, and not from Peter [Petrus] that the "stone" [petra] is, just as the Christian is from Christ, and not Christ from the Christian. Do you want to know, from what sort of "rock" [petra] the Apostle Peter [Petrus] was named? Hear the Apostle Paul: "Brethren, I do not want ye to be ignorant," says the Apostle of Christ, "how all our fathers were all under the cloud, and all passed through the sea; and all were baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea; and did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ" (1 Cor.10: 1-4). Here is the from whence the "Rock" is Peter.

Our Lord Jesus Christ, in the final days of His earthly life, in the days of His mission to the race of man, chose from among the disciples His twelve Apostles to preach the Word of God. Among them, the Apostle Peter for his fiery ardor was vouchsafed to occupy the first place (Mt.10:2) and to be as it were the representative person for all the Church. Therefore it is said to him, preferentially, after the confession: "I will give unto thee the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth, shall be bound in the heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth: shall be loosed in heaven" (Mt.16: 19). Therefore it was not one man, but rather the One Universal Church, that received these "keys" and the right "to bind and loosen." And that it was actually the Church that received this right, and not exclusively a single person, turn your attention to another place of the Scriptures, where the same Lord says to all His Apostles, "Receive ye the Holy Spirit" and further after this, "Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them: and whose soever sins ye retain, are retained" (John 20: 22-23); or: "whatsoever ye bind upon the earth, shall be bound in Heaven: and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth, shall be loosened in heaven" (Mt.18:18). Thus, it is the Church that binds, the Church that loosens; the Church, built upon the foundational cornerstone, Jesus Christ Himself (Eph 2:20), doth bind and loosen. Let both the binding and the loosening be feared: the loosening, in order not to fall under this again; the binding, in order not to remain forever in this condition. Therefore "Iniquities ensnare a man, and everyone is bound in the chains of his own sins," says Wisdom (Prov 5:22); and except for Holy Church nowhere is it possible to receive the loosening.

After His Resurrection the Lord entrusted the Apostle Peter to shepherd His spiritual flock not because, that among the disciples only Peter alone was pre-deserved to shepherd the flock of Christ, but Christ addresses Himself chiefly to Peter because, that Peter was first among the Apostles and as such the representative of the Church; besides which, having turned in this instance to Peter alone, as to the top Apostle, Christ by this confirms the unity of the Church. "Simon of John" -- says the Lord to Peter -- "lovest thou Me?" -- and the Apostle answered: "Yea, Lord, Thou knowest that I love Thee"; and a second time it was thus asked, and a second time he thus answered; being asked a third time, seeing that as it were not believed, he was saddened. But how is it possible for him not to believe That One, Who knew his heart? And wherefore then Peter answered: "Lord, Thou knowest all; Thou knowest that I love Thee." "And sayeth Jesus to him" all three times "Feed My sheep" (John 20:15-17).

Besides this, the triple appealing of the Savior to Peter and the triple confession of Peter before the Lord had a particular beneficial purpose for the Apostle. That one, to whom was given "the keys of the kingdom" and the right "to bind and to loose," bound himself thrice by fear and cowardice (Mt.26:69-75), and the Lord thrice loosens him by His appeal and in turn by his confession of strong love. And to shepherd literally the flock of Christ was acquired by all the Apostles and their successors. "Take heed, therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock," the Apostle Paul urges church presbyters, "over which the Holy Spirit hath made you overseers, to feed the Church of God, which He hath purchased with His own blood" (Acts 20:28); and the Apostle Peter to the elders: "Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof not by constraint, but willingly: not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind: neither as being lords over God's heritage, but being examples to the flock. And when is appeared the Prince of pastors, ye will receive unfading crowns of glory" (1 Pet. 5:2-4).

It is remarkable that Christ, having said to Peter: "Feed My sheep," did not say: "Feed thy sheep," but rather to feed, good servant, the sheep of the Lord. "Is Christ divided? was Paul crucified for you? or were ye baptized in the name of Paul?" (1 Cor.1:13). "Feed My sheep". Wherefore "wolfish robbers, wolfish oppressors, deceitful teachers and mercenaries, not being concerned about the flock" (Mt.7:15; Acts 20:29; 2 Pet 2:1; John 10:12), having plundered a strange flock and making of the spoils as though it be of their own particular gain, they think that they feed their flock. Such are not good pastors, as pastors of the Lord. "The good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep" (John 10:11), entrusted to Him by the chief Shepherd Himself (1 Pet 5:4). And the Apostle Peter, true to his calling, gave his soul for the very flock of Christ, having sealed his apostleship by a martyr's death, is now glorified throughout all the world.

The Apostle Paul, formerly Saul, was changed from a robbing wolf into a meek lamb. Formerly he was an enemy of the Church, then is manifest as an Apostle. Formerly he stalked it, then preached it. Having received from the high priests the authority at large to throw all Christians in chains for execution, he was already on the way, he breathed out "threatenings and slaughter against the disciples of the Lord" (Acts 9:1), he thirsted for blood, but "He that dwells in the Heavens shall laugh him to scorn" (Ps 2:4). When he, "having persecuted and vexed" in such manner "the Church of God" (1Cor.15:9; Acts 8:5), he came near Damascus, and the Lord from Heaven called to him: "Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou Me?" and I am here, and I am there, I am everywhere: here is My head; there is My body. There becomes nothing of a surprise in this; we ourselves are members of the Body of Christ. "Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou Me; it is hard for thee to kick against the goad" (Acts 9:4-5). Saul, however, "trembling and frightened", cried out: "Who art Thou, Lord?" The Lord answered him, "I am Jesus Whom thou persecutest."

And Saul suddenly undergoes a change: "What wantest Thou me to do?" -- he cries out. And suddenly for him there is the Voice: "Arise, and go to the city, and it shall be told thee what thou must do" (Acts 9:6). Here the Lord sends Ananias: "Arise and go into the street" to a man, "by the name of Saul," and baptize him, "for this one is a chosen vessel unto Me, to bear My name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel" (Acts 9: 11, 15, 18). This vessel must be filled with My Grace. "Ananias, however, answered: Lord, I have heard from many about this man, how much evil he hath done to Thy saints in Jerusalem: and here he hath authority from the chief priests to bind all who call on Thy Name" (Acts 9:13-14). But the Lord urgently commands Ananias: "Search for and fetch him, for this vessel is chosen by Me: for I shall show him what great things he must suffer for My name's sake" (Acts 9:11, 15-16).

And actually the Lord did show the Apostle Paul what things he had to suffer for His Name. He instructed him the deeds; He did not stop at the chains, the fetters, the prisons and shipwrecks; He Himself felt for him in his sufferings, He Himself guided him towards this day. On a single day the memory of the sufferings of both these Apostles is celebrated, though they suffered on separate days, but by the spirit and the closeness of their suffering they constitute one. Peter went first, and Paul followed soon after him. Formerly called Saul, and then Paul, having transformed his pride into humility. His very name (Paulus), meaning "small, little, less," demonstrates this. What is the Apostle Paul after this? Ask him, and he himself gives answer to this: "I am," says he, "the least of the Apostles... but I have labored more abundantly than all of them: yet not I, but the grace of God, which was with me" (1 Cor.15:9-10).

And so, brethren, celebrating now the memory of the holy Apostles Peter and Paul, remembering their venerable sufferings, we esteem their true faith and holy life, we esteem the innocence of their sufferings and pure confession. Loving in them the sublime quality and imitating them by great exploits, "in which to be likened to them" (2 Thess 3: 5-9), and we shall attain to that eternal bliss which is prepared for all the saints. The path of our life before was more grievous, thornier, harder, but "we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses" (Heb 12: 1), having passed by along it, made now for us easier, and lighter, and more readily passable. First there passed along it "the author and finisher of our faith," our Lord Jesus Christ Himself (Heb 12: 2); His daring Apostles followed after Him; then the martyrs, children, women, virgins and a great multitude of witnesses. Who acted in them and helped them on this path? He Who said, "Without Me ye can do nothing" (John 15: 5).

Troparion - Tone 4

First-enthroned of the apostles,
teachers of the universe:
Entreat the Master of all
to grant peace to the world,
and to our souls great mercy!

Kontakion - Tone 2

O Lord, You have taken up to eternal rest
and to the enjoyment of Your blessings
the two divinely-inspired preachers, the leaders of the Apostles,
for You have accepted their labors and deaths as a sweet-smelling sacrifice,
for You alone know what lies in the hearts of men.

Kontakion - Tone 2

Today Christ the Rock glorifies with highest honor
The rock of Faith and leader of the Apostles,
Together with Paul and the company of the twelve,
Whose memory we celebrate with eagerness of faith,
Giving glory to the one who gave glory to them!


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2014(with 2013's link here also and further:, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and even 2008!):

Sunday, June 28, 2015

St Paul the Physician of Corinth

Saint Paul the Physician, from the city of Corinth, in his youth took monastic tonsure at one of the monasteries. Here the saint toiled much and became an experienced ascetic.

Once Paul through demonic malice was slandered by a woman. She came to the monastery with a newborn infant and said that St. Paul was the father. The Elder with humility and joy endured the slander; he did not deny it and he took the infant as though it were his own son. When they began to reproach the saint for breaking his monastic vows, St. Paul said, “Brethren, let us ask the infant who his father is!” The newborn, pointing his hand at the blacksmith, said, “Here is my father and not the monk Paul.” Seeing this miracle, people bowed down to the Elder, asking forgiveness. From this time St. Paul received from God the gift of healing the sick, whereby he received the name physician. St. Paul died at age 70.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2014(with 2013's link here also and further:, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and even 2008!):

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Hieromartyr Kirion II, Catholicos-Patriarch of All Georgia

Commemorated on June 27

The holy Hieromartyr Kirion II (known in the world as George Sadzaglishvili) was born in 1855 in the village of Nikozi in the Gori district. His father was a priest.

He enrolled at the parochial school in Ananuri, then at the theological school in Gori, and finally at Tbilisi Seminary.

In 1880 he graduated from the Kiev Theological Academy and was appointed assistant dean of the Odessa Theological Seminary. From 1883 to 1886 St. Kirion was active in the educational life of Gori, Telavi, Kutaisi, and Tbilisi. In 1886 he was appointed supervisor of the Georgian monasteries and dean of the schools of the Society for the Renewal of Christianity in the Caucasus. He directed the parochial schools, established libraries and rare book collections within them, and published articles on the history of the Georgian Church, folklore and literature under the pseudonyms Iverieli, Sadzagelov, and Liakhveli (the Liakhvi River flows through his native region of Shida [Inner] Kartli, the central part of eastern Georgia).

In 1886 God’s chosen, George, was tonsured a monk with the name Kirion, and he was enthroned as abbot of Kvabtakhevi Monastery. Kirion continued his scholarly pursuits and intensified his spiritual labors. He collected folklore and ethnographic materials and studied artifacts from ancient Georgian churches. He generously donated the reliquaries and rare manuscripts he found to the antiquities collections at the Church Museum of Tbilisi and the Society for the Propagation of Literacy among the Georgians.

In 1898 Kirion published a description of the historical monuments of Liakhvi Gorge. His publication is an important resource for scholars and historians, since most of the monuments he describes were toppled by Georgia’s ideological and national enemies in subsequent years. (Kirion would later join the Moscow Archaeological Society.)

In August of 1898 Archimandrite Kirion was consecrated bishop of Alaverdi.

St. Kirion began at once to rebuild Alaverdi Church, and he offered his own resources for this momentous task. At the same time, he began to study the ancient artifacts of Kakheti and Hereti in eastern Georgia. Among the manuscripts he turned over to the Church Museum of Tbilisi was a Holy Gospel from the year 1098, unknown to scholars until that time.

Bishop Kirion was a tireless researcher, with a broad range of scholarly interests. To his pen belong more than forty monographs on various themes relating to the history of the Georgian Church and Christian culture in Georgia. He compiled a short terminological dictionary of the ancient Georgian language and, with the linguist Grigol Qipshidze, a History of Georgian Philology.

Kirion fought the appropriation of Georgian churches by the Armenian Monophysites. He sent a detailed memorandum to the Russian exarch in Georgia demanding that the confiscated Orthodox
churches be returned.

In 1901 Kirion was installed as bishop of Gori. By that time it had become clear to the Georgian exarchate that the educated and progressive clergymen were endorsing the holy hierarch Kirion and contesting the abolition of the autocephaly of the Georgian Church. But the government found a way out of this “dangerous situation” by frequently reassigning St. Kirion to serve in different parts of the Russian Empire: in 1903 he was reassigned to Cherson, in 1904 to Orel, and in 1906 to Sokhumi. In Sokhumi St. Kirion exerted every effort to restore and revive the historical Georgian churches and monasteries, though he would soon be reassigned to the Kovno diocese.

In 1905, at the demand of Georgia’s intelligentsia (under the leadership of St. Ilia the Righteous), the regime formed an extraordinary commission to formally consider the question of the autocephaly of the Georgian Church. St. Kirion delivered two lectures to the commission: one on the reasons behind Georgia’s struggle for the restoration of an autocephalous Church, and the other on the role of nationality in the life of the Church. The commission rejected the Georgian claims to autocephaly and subjected the leaders of the movement to harsh repression.

In 1907 St. Ilia the Righteous was killed, and the government forbade St. Kirion to travel to Georgia to pay his last respects. St. Kirion managed only to send a letter of condolence to St. Ilia’s loved ones. In the months that followed, the regime tightened down even more severely on St. Kirion. In 1908 he was accused of conspiring in the murder of Exarch Nikon, deprived of the rank of bishop, and arrested. This treacherous deed roused the indignation not only of the Georgian people but of the faithful of Russia as well. Even the democratic forces in Europe founded a society for the protection of the rights of Bishop Kirion and gathered signatures to demand his release from prison. The bishop himself humbly carried the cross of his persecution and consoled his sympathizers with the words of the great Georgian poet Shota Rustaveli: “‘Not a single rose is plucked from this world without thorns.’ We must bear our suffering with love, since suffering is the fruit of love and in suffering we will find our strength!”

By the year 1915 the regime had ceased to persecute St. Kirion. They restored him to the bishopric and elevated him as archbishop of Polotsk and Vitebsk in western Russia. He was not, however, permitted to return to his motherland.

In March of 1917 the Georgian Apostolic Orthodox Church declared its autocephaly restored. At the incessant demands of the Georgian people, St. Kirion finally returned to his motherland. One hundred and twenty cavalrymen met him in Aragvi Gorge (along the Georgian Military Highway) and reverently escorted him to the capital. In Tbilisi St. Kirion was met with great honor.

In September of 1917 the Holy Synod of the Georgian Orthodox Church enthroned Bishop Kirion as Catholicos-Patriarch of All Georgia. During the enthronement ceremony at Svetitskhoveli Cathedral, St. Kirion addressed the faithful: “My beloved motherland, the nation protected by the Most Holy Theotokos, purified in the furnace by tribulations and suffering, washed in its own tears: I turn to you, having been separated from you, having sought after you, having grieved over you, having sought for you and now having returned not as a prodigal son, but as your confidant and the conscience of your Church.

“I know that in your minds you are all inquiring, ‘What has he brought back with him? With what ointment will he heal his wounds? How will he comfort himself in his sadness?’ Consider my words: He came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give His life a ransom for many (Matt. 20:28). I, likewise, have come not as a hired servant, but as a faithful and obedient son!”

Soon after he was enthroned, St. Kirion sent an appeal to all the Orthodox patriarchs of the world in which he described in detail the history of the Georgian Church and requested an official recognition of her autocephaly.

On May 26, 1918, Georgia declared its independence. The next day Catholicos-Patriarch Kirion II presided during a service of thanksgiving. The chief shepherd and his flock rejoiced at the restoration of the autocephaly of the Georgian Church and the independence of the Georgian state, though from the beginning they perceived the imminence of the Bolshevik danger. The socialist revolution, now showing its true face, posed an enormous threat to the young republic and her Church.

On June 27, 1918, Catholicos-Patriarch Kirion II was found murdered in the patriarchal residence at Martqopi Monastery. The investigation was a mere formality and the guilty were never found.

Rumors were even spread that St. Kirion had shot himself. When the Holy Synod of the Georgian Apostolic Orthodox Church convened on October 17, 2002, it canonized Holy Hieromartyr Kirion and numbered him among the saints.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2014(with 2013's link here also and further:, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and even 2008!):

Friday, June 26, 2015

St Dionysius the Archbishop of Suzdal

Dionysius, Archbishop of Suzdal, in the world David, was tonsured at the Kiev Caves monastery. He arrived at the Volga with an icon of the Mother of God that he had received as a blessing from Sts Anthony and Theodosius. St Dionysius dug out a cave not far from Nizhni-Novgorod and struggled in total solitude. Brethren constantly thronged to the holy ascetic and in the year 1335 he founded a monastery in honor of the Ascension of the Lord. Among his students of St Dionysius were Sts Euthymius of Suzdal (April 1) and Macarius of Zheltovod and Unzha (July 25). In the year 1352 the holy Elder sent twelve of his brethren to “the upper cities and countryside, whom God would bless” for the spiritual enlightenment of the people and the organizing of new monasteries. The monastery of St Dionysius exerted a deep charitable influence on the inhabitants of Nizhni-Novgorod. In the year 1371 the saint tonsured into monasticism the forty-year-old widow of Prince Andrew Constantinovich, an example of how he accepted into monasticism “various dignitaries: women, widowers, and virgins.”

In the year 1374 St Dionysius was deemed worthy of the office of bishop. His years of service as bishop occurred during a remarkable period, for Russia was rising to cast off the Mongol-Tatar Yoke. On March 31, 1375 the Tatar military-chief, having been shown to the bishop’s court by the enslaved inhabitants of Nizhni-Novgorod, shot an arrow at St Dionysius, but the Lord preserved his chosen one, and the arrow struck only the bishop’s mantle. In 1377, through the blessing of St Dionysius (who may have edited the document), the Lavrentian Chronicle was compiled by St Laurence, inspiring Russia in its struggle for freedom.

In 1379, preserving the integrity of the first hierarch’s cathedra, St Dionysius was one of the bishops gathered in Moscow by order of the prince, and he came out against the election of the prince’s protegee, the ill-reputed archimandrite Mityaya as Metropolitan.

In the same year of 1379 St Dionysius journeyed to Constantinople with a protest against the choice of Mityaya on grounds of his complicity with the heretical Strigolniki. The saint made a strong impression upon the Greeks by his sublime spiritual frame of mind and his profound knowledge of Holy Scripture. Patriarch Nilus, having termed the saint “a warrior of God and a spiritual man,” wrote that he himself saw him “at fasting and charity, and vigil, and prayers, and tears, and every other virtue.” From Constantinople St Dionysius sent two copies of the Hodigitria Icon of the Mother of God to a Council at Suzdal. In 1382 the bishop received the title of archbishop from the patriarch. Returning to Russia, the saint travelled to Pskov and Novgorod to struggle against the heresy of the Strigolniki.

He visited Constantinople a second time in 1383 for discussion with the patriarch on questions about the governance of the Russian metropolitanate. In the year 1384 St Dionysius was made “metropolitan for Russia” by Patriarch Nilus. But upon his return to Kiev the saint was arrested on orders of the Kiev prince Vladimir Olgerdovich and subjected to imprisonment, where he died on October 15, 1385. The burial of the saint was in “the Kiev Cave of the Great Anthony.” St Dionysius is commemorated on June 26 because it is the Feast of his patron saint, St David of Thessalonica, whose name he was given in Baptism. In the Synodikon of the 1552 Nizhni-Novgorod Caves monastery, St Dionysius is called a “wonderworking monk”.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2014(with 2013's link here also and further:, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and even 2008!):

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

The Seven Martyred Brothers Orentius, Pharnacius, Eros, Firmus, Firminus, Cyriacus and Longinus in Georgia

The Seven Martyred Brothers Orentius, Pharnacius, Eros, Firmus, Firminus, Cyriacus and Longinus were Roman soldiers. During the reign of Maximian (284-305) the Scythians attacked the Greeks. St Orentius was ordered to fight against the Scythian champion Marothom, who was distinguished for his special strength of body. He was also a strong and brave warrior. Orentius was a Christian, as were his six brothers, who were also serving in the imperial army. Calling on the Lord for help, St Orentius defeated Marothom and so stopped the invasion of the Scythians.

The emperor intended to offer sacrifice to the pagan gods for this victory and he invited the victor, St Orentius, to participate. The saint refused, explaining that he was a Christian, and said that he vanquished the enemy by the power of the Lord Jesus Christ. Neither the promise of honors and riches, nor threats of punishment could induce the saint to renounce Christ. The fierce and ungrateful emperor gave orders to banish both the saint and his six brothers to the Caucasus. During the journey all seven brothers died from hunger or torture.

The first to die was St Eros on June 22 at Parembol; after him St Orentius suffered martyrdom. They tied a stone around his neck and cast him into the sea. The Archangel Raphael took him from the water to dry land at Riza, on the south shore of the Black Sea, where the holy martyr surrendered his soul to God. St Pharnacius went to the Lord on July 3 at Kordila.

Sts Firmus and Firminus died on July 7 at Aspara, on the eastern shore of the Black Sea. St Cyriacus departed this transitory life at Ziganeia on July 14, and St Longinus died on the ship on July 28. Battered by a storm, the ship went aground at Pitindeia (Pitsunda), where the body of the holy martyr was buried.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2014(with 2013's link here also and further:, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and even 2008!):

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Icon of the Mother of God “Tenderness” of the Pskov Caves

Commemorated on June 23

The “Tenderness” Icon of the Most Holy Mother of God was found in the monastery of the caves in 1521, and was transferred to the city of Pskov by the pious Christians Basil and Theodore. The Icon is particularly renowned for the deliverance of Pskov and the Pskov Caves monastery from the army of Stephen Bathory (1533-1586) in 1581. It is commemorated on May 21, June 23, August 26, October 7, and on the Seventh Sunday of Pascha.

The Tenderness Icon of the Mother of God is of the Eleousa (Umilenie) type, and is regarded as the patroness of the city of Pskov.

The October 7 commemoration was established in thanksgiving for the deliverance of Pskov from the invading army of Napoleon in 1812. The Pskov Caves Icon of the Most Holy Mother of God, named the “Tenderness” (1542), is famous particularly for the defense of Pskov and the Pskov Caves monastery from the army of Stephen Bathory in 1581. Its celebration is also on May 21, August 26 and October 7.

The Tenderness Icon of the Mother of God of the Pskov Lavra of the Caves is of the Eleousa (Umilenie) type.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2014(with 2013's link here also and further:, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and even 2008!):

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Blessed Prince Gleb Andreevich the Son of St Andrew Bogoliubsky

Holy Prince Gleb of Vladimir, named George in holy Baptism, was a younger son of the holy Prince Andrew Bogoliubsky (July 4). Under the influence of his pious parents he grew up with a deep faith, and from twelve years of age he led a solitary spiritual life. The parents did not hinder their son and even assisted him in spiritual growth. The prince especially loved the reading of holy books, he esteemed the clergy and he was charitable to all. Despite his young age, he chose for himself the exploit of strict fasting and prayerful vigilance. Prince Gleb died in the year 1174, at age nineteen.

His incorrupt relics were preserved and glorified by miracles. In the year 1238, during the time of the incursion of Batu upon the Russian Land, the Tatars burned the cathedral at Vladimir. In this conflagration perished Bishop Metrophanes, Great-princess Agatha, wife of Great-prince George Vsevolodovich (+ 1238), and many inhabitants of the city of Vladimir, who were locked in the cathedral church. The fire, however, did not even touch the tomb of St Gleb. Years later, in July 1410, Tatars again descended upon Vladimir. In plundering the city, they began to sack the cathedral church treasury, having murdered the door-keeper Patrick. Supposing that treasure was hidden in the saint’s tomb, they set about to break it open. Just as the Tatars touched the stone crypt of St Gleb, flames shot forth from it, and the Tatars fled the city in terror.

Through the prayers of the holy prince the city was saved from an incursion of Polish-Lithuanian plunderers in 1613.

The celebration of St Gleb was established in the year 1702, and then also a service was written to him, and somewhat later, a Life. His relics rest in the Dormition cathedral in Vladimir. In the year 1774 the south chapel of the cathedral was dedicated to him. Prince Gleb is revered as the special patron and defender of the city of Vladimir.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2014(with 2013's link here also and further:, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and even 2008!):

Friday, June 19, 2015

Païsius the Great of Egypt

June 19

Our righteous Father Païsius the Great was born in Egypt about the year 300 and was consecrated to God as a monk at a young age. He together with Saint John the Short (commemorated Nov. 9) was trained in the ascetical life in Scete by the great Abba Pambo (July 18). He practiced extreme fasting and vigil beyond the limits of human strength, and received many revelations of mysteries. The Saviour often appeared to him; once He appeared to him with two Angels, as He had to Abraham, and allowed him to wash His immaculate feet. When he was asked which virtue was the highest of all, he would answer, "That which is done in secret." He reposed in peace in deep old age; his relics are found in the monastery of Amba Bishoy in Wadi Natrun (the ancient Nitria of Egypt), and to the present day they work healings and miracles.

Apolytikion of Païsius the Great in the Fourth Tone
The incarnate Angel, and the boast and summit of monks, the bodiless man, the citizen of Heaven, the great God-bearing Païsius celebrateth with us in divine jubilation, granting grace to all them that extol him with rev'rence. With fervour let us honour this day, off'ring him songs of praise.

Kontakion of Païsius the Great in the Plagal of the Fourth Tone
With godly anthems, come, ye faithful, let us all acclaim the godly-wise and truly ven'rable Païsius, the true citizen and ornament of the desert, the most noble peer of Angels, the true friend of Christ, and the glory of monastics and ascetic Saints. Let us cry to him: Rejoice, O Father Païsius.



SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2014(with 2013's link here also and further:, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and even 2008!):

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Icon of the Mother of God “the God Loving”

Commemorated on June 18

The Bogolub Icon of the Mother of God, one of the most ancient wonderworking icons of Russia, was painted in the twelfth century at the request of Prince Andrew Bogolubsky (July 4), in memory of an appearance to him by the Mother of God.

In the year 1155 holy Prince Andrew, having resettled from Vishgorod to the Suzdal region, brought with him a wonderworking icon of the Mother of God, painted by the Evangelist Luke (this afterwards was called the Vladimir Icon). At seven versts distance from Vladimir by horse, the cart carrying the wonderworking icon stopped and could not be moved from the place. Holy Prince Andrew asked the priest Nicholas, who accompanied him, to serve a Molieben before the Icon. For a long time Andrew prayed with tears before the venerable image. Later he went into his tent and continued his fervent prayer. The Most Holy Theotokos appeared to him with a small scroll in Her hand and commanded the pious prince that the icon he brought from Vishgorod should remain at Vladimir, and that on the site of Her miraculous appearance a church and holy monastery should be built. She then prayerfully raised Her hand to Heaven, and received a blessing from Christ the Savior. Then the vision ended.

In fulfilling the command, holy Prince Andrew built a stone church in honor of the Nativity of the Most Holy Theotokos, and also a monastery. Afterwards the holy prince commissioned talented iconographers and asked that the Mother of God be depicted such as he had seen Her in the vision, in full stature, with the scroll in Her right hand, and Her face turned towards the Savior. When the church was completed, the icon was placed in it and a yearly celebration in honor of the appearance of the Mother of God was established on June 18. The monastery, and the city which formed around the monastery, was named Bogolub by St Andrew, because in his own words, "the Mother of God loves this place," and the prince himself came to be called Bogolub or "God-lover." The wonderworking icon of the Mother of God, brought from Vishgorod, was afterwards transferred from the Bogoub monastery to Vladimir into the Dormition cathedral, but the icon of the Appearance remained at Bogolub and was called the Bogolub (at the present time [1978] the icon is in the Vladimir-Suzdal Museum collection).

The icon of the Bogolub Mother of God was glorified by innumerable miracles, and over the span of many centuries manifest its grace-filled help to the believers of the Russian nation. The fame of the miracles and signs wrought by the icon inspired believers in many places in Russia to make copies of the venerable image, some of which were also miraculous.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2014(with 2013's link here also and further:, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and even 2008!):

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Manuel, Sabel, & Ishmael the Martyrs of Persia

June 17

The holy Martyrs Manuel, Sabel, and Ishmael, Persians by race and brethren according to the flesh, were sent by the Persian King as ambassadors to Julian the Apostate to negotiate a peace treaty. While with him at a place near Chalcedon, they refused to join him in offering sacrifice to his idols. Scorning the immunity universally accorded ambassadors, he had them slain in the year 362. This was a cause of the war with Persia in which Julian perished miserably the following year.

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

Kontakion of Martyrs Manuel, Sabel & Ismael in the Second Tone
Pierced through in your hearts with faith in Christ, O blessed ones, ye drank of His cup with faith, and ye hurled to the ground all the impudence of the Persians and their vaunting idolatry; and ye intercede for us all, ye equal in number to the Trinity.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2014(with 2013's link here also and further:, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and even 2008!):

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Tychon the Wonderworker

June 16

This Saint was born of pious Christian parents and flourished in the fifth century. Because of his piety and purity of life he was ordained deacon by the Bishop of Amathus, and later was made Bishop of Amathus by the great Epiphanius (see May 12). He worked many signs and wonders and turned many from the worship of idols unto Christ. Once he planted a vine in the ground and it wondrously sprouted and brought forth ripe grapes. After his death, on his annual feast-day on June 16, it being yet early in the season, that vine would be laden with unripe grapes, as is natural; but as the Divine Liturgy began, the grapes would begin to darken, and by the end of it, they would be fully ripened. The third of the Vespers stichera in the Menaion service to Saint Tychon alludes to this yearly miracle.

Apolytikion of Tychon the Wonderworker in the First Tone
Thou didst prove to be a citizen of the desert, an angel in the flesh, and a wonderworker, O Tychon, our God-bearing Father. By fasting, vigil, and prayer thou didst obtain heavenly gifts, and thou healest the sick and the souls of them that have recourse to thee with faith. Glory to Him that hath given thee strength. Glory to Him that hath crowned thee. Glory to Him that worketh healings for all through thee.

Kontakion of Tychon the Wonderworker in the Third Tone
Shining in ascetic toils belov'd of God, O Saint Tychon, from on high didst thou receive the Holy Comforter's power to destroy the wicked idols of gross delusion and to save imperilled peoples, to cast out demons, and to heal the sick, O blest one; wherefore, we honour thee as a true friend of God.



SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2014(with 2013's link here also and further:, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and even 2008!):

Monday, June 15, 2015

Martyr Crescentia at Lucania

Commemorated on June 15

Saint Crescentia suffered for Christ during the reign of Emperor Diocletian (284-305) with the holy martyrs Vitus and Modestus. She was the governess of St Vitus, and tried to save the boy when his father wanted to kill him because he would not abandon his faith in Christ.

St Crescentia and the boy’s tutor St Modestus, who were Christians, secretly took him from his parental home. They found a boat at the river, and an angel entered the boat with them. They reached the Italian district of Lucanium, where the saints lived quietly, hiding from those who would persecute them. The holy youth continued to heal the sick and convert pagans to Christianity. His fame soon spread throughout the region.

Sts Vitus and Modestus were arrested and thrown into prison, then Diocletian had them tortured. St Crescentia came out of the crowd of spectators and confessed herself a Christian. She reproached the emperor for his cruelty, and he also sentenced her to torture.

St Vitus called out to God, “O God, save us by Thy power and deliver us.” Then an earthquake struck, and many pagans perished beneath the collapsed buildings. Diocletian fled to his chambers in fear. An angel released the martyrs from the pillars and took them to Lucanium.

St Vitus prayed that God would accept their souls in peace and not deprive those who kept their memory of His benefaction. A Voice came from Heaven, “Thy prayer is heard.” Then the saints joyfully surrendered their souls to God.

St Crescentia is also commemorated on May 16.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2014(with 2013's link here also and further:, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and even 2008!):

Friday, June 12, 2015

Venerable Arsenius the Abbot of Konevits

Commemorated on June 12

Saint Arsenius of Konevits was a native of Novgorod, a coppersmith by trade. The saint accepted tonsure at the Lisich monastery near Novgorod, where he spent eleven years. He went to Mount Athos in 1373, and there he spent three years, dwelling in prayer and making copper vessels for the brethren.

In the year 1393, St Arsenius returned to Russia and brought with him an icon of the Mother of God, which was later called the Konevits Icon. St Arsenius went with this icon to the island of Konevets on Lake Ladoga, where he spent five years in solitude.

In 1398, with the blessing of Archbishop John of Novgorod, St Arsenius laid the foundations of a cenobitic monastery dedicated to the Nativity of the Most Holy Theotokos. He visited Athos a second time, and asked the holy Fathers for their prayers and a blessing for his monastery.

In 1421 the lake flooded, destroying the monastery structures. This forced St Arsenius to relocate the monastery to a new site on the island. St Arsenius died in 1447, and was buried in the monastery church. His Life was written in the sixteenth century by Igumen Barlaam of Konevits. The Life of Saint Arsenius was published in 1850, together with the Service and Akathist in his honor.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2014(with 2013's link here also and further:, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and even 2008!):

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Icon of the Mother of God “It Is Truly Meet”

Commemorated on June 11

During the reign of the emperors Basil and Constantine Porphyrogenitos, and the patriarchate of St Nicholas Chrysoberges (984-995), a certain Elder and his disciple lived near Karyes, the administrative center of the Holy Mountain.

One Saturday evening, the Elder decided to go to Karyes to participate in the Vigil service for Sunday. He left, instructing his disciple to remain behind and read the service in their cell. As it grew dark, the disciple heard a knock on the door. When he opened the door, he saw an unknown monk who called himself Gabriel, and he invited him to come in. They stood before the icon of the Mother of God and read the service together with reverence and compunction. During the Ninth Ode of the Canon, the disciple began to sing “My soul magnifies the Lord...” with the Irmos of St Cosmas the Hymnographer (October 14), “More honorable than the Cherubim....”

The stranger sang the next verse, “For He has regarded the low estate of His handmaiden....” Then he chanted something the disciple had never heard before, “It is truly meet to bless Thee, O Theotokos, ever-blessed and most pure, and the Mother of our God...” Then he continued with, “More honorable than the Cherubim....”

While the hymn was being sung, the icon of the Theotokos shone with a heavenly light. The disciple was moved by the new version of the familiar hymn, and asked his guest to write the words down for him. When the stranger asked for paper and ink, the disciple said that they did not have any.

The stranger took a roof tile and wrote the words of the hymn on its surface with his finger. The disciple knew then that this was no ordinary monk, but the Archangel Gabriel. The angel said, “Sing in this manner, and all the Orthodox as well.” Then he disappeared, and the icon of the Mother of God continued to radiate light for some time afterward.

The tile was taken to Constantinople when St Nicholas Chrysoberges (December 16) was Patriarch.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2014(with 2013's link here also and further:, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and even 2008!):

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

St John Maximovitch the Metropolitan of Tobolsk

Commemorated on June 10

Saint John, Metropolitan of Tobolsk and All Siberia, the Wonderwonder, in the world was named John Maximovitch, and he was born in the city of Nezhino in 1651. His father Maxim Vasil’evich and mother Euphrosyne had seven sons, of which John was the eldest. Upon his completion of the Kiev-Mogilyansk College (afterwards the Kiev Spiritual Academy), the future hierarch emerged from it as a teacher of the Latin language. Thereafter, in 1680, he accepted monasticism at the Kiev Caves monastery and became absorbed in inner spiritual activity. With the general consent of the brethren, the young monk was given the obedience of preaching. From this period he demonstrated an exceptional eloquence. He attached a special significance to inner religious knowledge. The chief theme of his life can be defined at a stroke as, “How ought man to conform his will with the will of God?” He developed this theme both in his preachings, and in his subsequent missionary service. In answer to it appeared the work, published towards the end of his long ascetic life, and entitled “Heliotropion” or “Sunflower,” or Conforming the Human Will to the Divine Will.” Of the many works of the holy Fathers of the Orthodox Church, this work gives a very thorough answer to this great question of Christian soteriology.

In 1658 they sent him on a mission to Moscow. There he was appointed by Patriarch Joachim (1674-1690) as vicar of the Briansk-Svensk monastery, which was then under the Kiev Caves Lavra.

St Theodosius, Archbishop of Chernigov, in 1695 shortly before his own death (February 5) appointed Hieromonk John as Archimandrite of the Chernigov Eletsk monastery, and designated him as his successor as bishop. (St John revered the memory of St Theodosius, believing in the power of his prayerful intercession before the Lord. Because of his faith, he received healing from a serious illness through the prayers of St Theodosius. At the very height of the sickness, St Theodosius appeared to him and said, “Serve tomorrow, you will be well.” On the following day St John, completely well and to the amazement of everyone, served the Divine Liturgy. This miracle of St John’s healing marked the beginning of the veneration of St Theodosius as a grace-bearing saint of God.)

On January 10, 1697 Patriarch Adrian of Moscow and All Rus (1690-1700) consecrated Archimandrite John as Bishop of Chernigov, in the Dormition cathedral of the Moscow Kremlin.

Upon entering into the administration of the diocese, Bishop John created a Collegium near the archbishop’s cathedral, similar to the Kiev Academy, which the saint intended should serve as an “Athens at Chernigov,” a school of pious enlightenment.

In view of its high level of theological education and training, St John’s school received wide renown. In essence, this was the first seminary in Russia. Seminaries on the model of this one began opening in other dioceses of the Russian Church.

The saint also later opened a printing press, at which he and his successors published many works of spiritual and moral content.

The life of St John was illumined by lofty virtues, and especially humility. It is reflected also in his works, “The Moral-Didactic Reflector” (Chernigov, 1703 and 1707); “The Alphabet, with Rhymes Added” (1705); “The Virgin Mother of God” (1707); “The Theatre, or Moral-Didactic Disgrace” (1708); “Excursus on Psalm 50” (Chernigov, 1708); “Excursus on the “Our Father” and “The Eight Gospel Beatitudes” (1709); “The Royal Way of the Cross” (Chernigov, 1709); “Thoughts on God to the Benefit of Right-Belief” (1710 and 1711); “Synaxarion Commemoration on the Victory of Poltava” (1710); “The Pilgrim” (in manuscript); “Spiritual Thoughts” (Moscow, 1782).

At Chernigov in 1714 the saint also first published his chief work, written in the Latin language. It was a peculiarity of the graduates of the Kiev school was that they wrote their works in classical Latin. Professor I. A. Maximovich in 1888 translated the “Heliotropion” into the modern Russian language and published it at first in parts in the “Chernigov Diocesan Newsletter”, and later on in a separate book (Kiev, 1896). With his name is connected also “The Latin-Greek-Russian Lexicon.”

Saint John was known to have connections with Mount Athos. He had a special interest in the fate of Russian inhabitants on the Holy Mountain, and sent them substantial material aid during these difficult years. His archbishopal grammota to the Russian monastery of St Panteleimon has been preserved, and it testifies to his concern for those on Mount Athos.

On August 14, 1711, after his elevation to the dignity of metropolitan, St John arrived at the see of Tobolsk and All Siberia. The saint concerned himself constantly with the enlightening of his diocese. There he continued with his work, started at Chernigov. He improved the school which had been opened by his predecessor, the renowned missionary Metropolitan Philotheus (Leschinsky, + 1727), and he continued the apostolic preaching among the pagans of Siberia, converting many thousands to Christ. In 1714 St John set off to Peking to head a mission with Archimandrite Hilarion (Lezhaisky). At Tobolsk he again undertook publishing activity, using the printing press he set up at Chernigov. To this time belongs also the publication by Metropolitan John of the “Heliotropion” in the Slavonic-Russian language (1714), so that the Siberians could also understand it.

The chronicler describes the life of the saint in Siberia: “He was quiet and unpretentious, graciously considerate, sympathetic to the poor, and merciful.” He often helped people secretly, and sometimes in the garb of a simple monk, he would bring generous alms to the homes of the needy saying, “Accept this in the Name of Jesus Christ.” His home at Tobolsk was always open to all those in need of help or a word of comfort. Even on the day he died, June 10, 1715, after Divine Liturgy St John had set up a dining-hall at his home for the clergy and the impoverished, and he himself served at table. Later on, having taken his leave of everyone, the saint withdrew to his chambers. When the church bells rang for Vespers, he died at prayer on his knees. The saint was buried in the chapel of St John Chrysostom at the Tobolsk Dormition-Sophia cathedral.

St John has long been venerated in Siberia. In light of numerous miracles and the longstanding local veneration of St John, in 1916 the Church established the all-Russian celebration of the saint on June 10, the day of repose.

St John’s memory is fervently kept by Siberians and by all the believing Russian people. He at present rests in the Tobolsk cathedral of the Protection of the Mother of God. The service to him was republished, with the blessing of His Holiness Patriarch Alexis I, by Metropolitan Bartholomew (Gorodtsov) in 1947 at the city of Novosibirsk.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2014(with 2013's link here also and further:, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and even 2008!):

Tuesday, June 09, 2015

Venerable Lucian, spiritual son of St. David Gareji

Commemorated on June 9

Saint David of Gareji was Syrian by birth. The future ascetic became a disciple of St. John of Zedazeni and journeyed with him to Georgia. St. David and his spiritual son Lucian settled on a mountain above Tbilisi, the capital of Kartli.

At that time Kartli was constantly under threat of the Persian fire-worshippers. St. David would spend entire days in prayer, beseeching the Lord for forgiveness of the sins of those who dwelt in the city. When he was finished praying for the day, he would stand on the mountain and bless the whole city. Once a week Sts. David and Lucian would go down into the city to preach. A church dedicated to St. David was later built on the mountain where he labored.

St. David’s authority and popularity alarmed the fire-worshippers, and they accused him of adultery, in an attempt to discredit him in the eyes of the people. As a “witness” they summoned a certain expectant prostitute, who accused him of being the child’s father. Hoping in God, the holy father touched his staff to the prostitute’s womb and ordered the unborn child to declare the truth. From out of the womb the infant uttered the name of his true father.

Outraged at this slander, the bystanders savagely stoned the woman to death. St. David pleaded with them to stop, but he was unable to placate the furious crowd. Deeply disturbed by these events, St. David departed the region with his disciple Lucian.

The holy fathers settled in a small cave in the wilderness and began to spend all their time in prayer. They ate nothing but herbs and the bark of trees. When the herbs withered from the summer heat, the Lord sent them deer. Lucian milked them and brought the milk to St. David, and when the elder made the sign of the Cross over the milk it was miraculously transformed into cheese.

Shaken by the holy father’s miracle, Lucian told him, “Even if my body rots and wastes away from hunger and thirst, I will not permit myself to fret over the things of this temporal life.”

The fathers kept a strict fast on Wednesdays and Fridays—they ate nothing, and even the deer did not come to them on those days.

A frightful serpent inhabited a cave not far from where they lived and attacked all the animals around it. But at St. David’s command the serpent deserted that place.

Once local hunters were tracking the fathers’ deer, and they caught sight of Lucian milking them as they stood there quietly, as though they were sheep. The hunters paid great respect to St. David and, having returned to their homes, reported what they had seen.

Soon the Gareji wilderness filled with people who longed to draw nearer to Christ. A monastery was founded there, and for centuries it stood fast as a center and cornerstone of faith and learning in Georgia.

After some time St. David set off on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem. He entrusted Lucian to fulfill his responsibilities at the monastery and took some of the other brothers with him. When the pilgrims were approaching the place called the “Ridge of Grace,” from which the holy city of Jerusalem becomes visible, St. David fell to his knees and glorified God with tears. Judging himself unworthy to follow in the footsteps of Jesus Christ, he was satisfied to gaze upon the city from afar.

Then he stood at the city gates and prayed fervently while his companions entered the Holy City and venerated the holy places. Returning, St. David took with him three stones from the “Ridge of Grace.” That night an angel appeared to the patriarch of Jerusalem and informed him that a certain pious man named David, who was visiting from afar, had taken with him all the holiness of Jerusalem.

The angel proceeded to tell him that the venerable one had marched through the city of Nablus, clothed in tatters and bearing on his shoulders an old sack in which he carried the three holy stones. The patriarch sent messengers after the stranger with a request that he return two of the stones and take only one for himself. St. David returned the two stones, but he declined the patriarch’s invitation to visit him. He took the third stone back with him to the monastery, and to this day it has been full of the grace of miraculous healing.

After St. David brought the miraculous stone from Jerusalem, the number of brothers at the monastery doubled. The venerable father ministered to all of them and encouraged them. He also visited the cells of the elder hermits to offer his solace. In accordance with his will, a monastery in the name of St. John the Baptist was founded in the place called “Mravalmta” (the Rolling Mountains).

The Lord God informed St. David of his imminent departure to the Kingdom of Heaven. Then he gathered the fathers of the wilderness and instructed them for the last time not to fall into confusion, but to be firm and ceaselessly entreat the Lord for the salvation of their souls.

He received Holy Communion, lifted up his hands to the Lord, and gave up his spirit.

St. David’s holy relics have worked many miracles: approaching them, those blind from birth have received their sight. To this day, believers have been healed of every spiritual and bodily affliction at his grave.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2014(with 2013's link here also and further:, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and even 2008!):

Monday, June 08, 2015

Icon of the Mother of God of Yaroslavl

Commemorated on June 8

 Little is known of this, one of the earliest Russian icons, except that it belonged to the holy Princes Basil and Constantine (July 3). The lower chapel of the Ilinsk church in Yaroslavl was dedicated to the wonderworking icon.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2014(with 2013's link here also and further:, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and even 2008!):

Sunday, June 07, 2015

The Sunday of All Saints

June 07

Tone of the week: Plagal of the Fourth Tone

First Eothinon

Honouring the friends of God with much reverence, the Prophet-King David says, "But to me, exceedingly honourable are Thy friends, O Lord" (Ps. 138:16). And the divine Apostle, recounting the achievements of the Saints, and setting forth their memorial as an example that we might turn away from earthly things and from sin, and emulate their patience and courage in the struggles for virtue, says, "Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every burden, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us" (Heb. 12:1).

This commemoration began as the Sunday (Synaxis) of All Martyrs; to them were added all the ranks of Saints who bore witness (the meaning of "Martyr" in Greek) to Christ in manifold ways, even if occasion did not require the shedding of their blood.

Therefore, guided by the teaching of the Divine Scriptures and Apostolic Tradition, we the pious honour all the Saints, the friends of God, for they are keepers of God's commandments, shining examples of virtue, and benefactors of mankind. Of course, we honour the known Saints especially on their own day of the year, as is evident in the Menologion. But since many Saints are unknown, and their number has increased with time, and will continue to increase until the end of time, the Church has appointed that once a year a common commemoration be made of all the Saints. This is the feast that we celebrate today. It is the harvest of the coming of the Holy Spirit into the world; it is the "much fruit" brought forth by that "Grain of wheat that fell into the earth and died" (John 12:24); it is the glorification of the Saints as "the foundation of the Church, the perfection of the Gospel, they who fulfilled in deed the sayings of the Saviour" (Sunday of All Saints, Doxasticon of Vespers).

In this celebration, then, we reverently honour and call blessed all the Righteous, the Prophets, Apostles, Martyrs, Confessors, Shepherds, Teachers, and Holy Monastics, both men and women alike, known and unknown, who have been added to the choirs of the Saints and shall be added, from the time of Adam until the end of the world, who have been perfected in piety and have glorified God by their holy lives. All these, as well as the orders of the Angels, and especially our most holy Lady and Queen, the Ever-virgin Theotokos Mary, do we honour today, setting their life before us as an example of virtue, and entreating them to intercede in our behalf with God, Whose grace and boundless mercy be with us all. Amen.

Resurrectional Apolytikion in the Plagal of the Fourth Tone
From on high didst Thou descend, O Compassionate One; to burial of three days hast Thou submitted that Thou mightest free us from our passions. O our Life and Resurrection, Lord, glory be to Thee.

Apolytikion of All Saints in the Fourth Tone
Your Church, O Christ our God, clothed itself in the blood of Your martyrs from throughout the world, as though it were a robe of linen and purple; through them, she cries out to You, "Send down upon Your people compassion, grant peace to Your commonwealth, and to our souls, great mercy."

Seasonal Kontakion in the Plagal of the Fourth Tone
As the first-fruits ouf our nature to the Planter of created things, the world presenteth the God-bearing martyred Saints in off'ring unto Thee, O Lord. Through their earnest entreaties, keep Thy Church in deep peace and divine tranquillity, through the pure Theotokos, O Thou Who art greatly merciful.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2014(with 2013's link here also and further:, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and even 2008!):

Saturday, June 06, 2015

Venerable Jonah the Abbot of Klimetzk

Saint Jonah of Klimetzk in the world John, became a monk, and founded the Klimetzk Trinity monastery in fulfillment of a vow.

In 1490 he had been caught by a storm on Lake Onega. When there was no hope for survival, John cried out to the Lord, entreating Him to preserve his life so he might repent and serve God. The boat was thrown onto a sandbar by the waves. There he heard the voice of the Lord commanding him to found a monastery in honor of the Life-Creating Trinity.

He miraculously discovered a holy icon on a juniper tree. The saint fulfilled the will of the Lord and built a monastery with two churches, one dedicated to the Most Holy Trinity and the other in honor of St Nicholas, protector of those who sail and those who travel.

Refusing the rank of igumen, St Jonah remained a simple monk at the monastery. He died on June 6, 1534. A church was built over his relics, and was dedicated to Sts Zachariah and Elizabeth.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2014(with 2013's link here also and further:, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and even 2008!):

Friday, June 05, 2015

1st Friday after Pentecost

Apolytikion of 1st Fri. after Pentecost in the Plagal of the Fourth Tone
Blessed are You, O Christ our God, who made fishermen all-wise, sending upon them the Holy Spirit and, through them, netting the world. O Loving One, glory to You.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2014(with 2013's link here also and further:, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and even 2008!):

Thursday, June 04, 2015

Venerable Methodius the Abbot of Peshnosha the Disciple of the Venerable Sergius of Radonezh

Saint Methodius, Igumen of Peshnosha was the founder of the Peshnosha monastery. In his youth he went to St Sergius of Radonezh and spent several years under his guidance. Later on, with the blessing of St Sergius, he withdrew to a solitary place and built himself a cell in the forest beyond the River Yakhroma. Soon several disciples came to him in this marshy place, wishing to imitate his life. St Sergius visited him and advised him to build a monastery and church. St Methodius himself toiled at the construction of the church and the cells, “on foot carrying” wood along the river, and from that time the monastery began to be called “the Peshnosha.”

In 1391 St Methodius became igumen of this monastery. At times he withdrew two versts from the monastery and struggled in prayer. Here also St Sergius came to him for spiritual conversation, therefore this spot became known as “Beseda” (“Conversation-place”).

St Methodius died in 1392 and was buried at the monastery he founded. A church dedicated to Sts Sergius of Radonezh and Methodius of Peshnosha was built over his relics in 1732. The beginning of his local veneration dates from the late seventeenth—early eighteenth centuries.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2014(with 2013's link here also and further:, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and even 2008!):

Wednesday, June 03, 2015

1st Wednesday after Pentecost

June 03

Apolytikion of 1st Wed. after Pentecost in the Plagal of the Fourth Tone
Blessed are You, O Christ our God, who made fishermen all-wise, sending upon them the Holy Spirit and, through them, netting the world. O Loving One, glory to You.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2014(with 2013's link here also and further:, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and even 2008!):

Tuesday, June 02, 2015

Postfeast of Pentecost — 3rd Day of the Trinity

Commemorated on June 2

Many of the hymns of Pentecost are repeated in the postfestal services of this week, and references to the Holy Spirit, and to fire, abound. In particular, we are reminded of the Unburnt Bush (Exodus 3:2), the zealous Prophet Elias who ascended to Heaven in a chariot of fire, the three youths in the fiery furnace, and the Lord descending on Mt. Sinai in fire (Exodus 19:18).

As we commemorate the Holy Spirit this week, we look forward to the Sunday of All Saints, those righteous men and women of all nations and in every age, who were perfected and sanctified by the same Holy Spirit.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2014(with 2013's link here also and further:, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and even 2008!):

Monday, June 01, 2015

Postfeast of Pentecost — Day of the Holy Spirit

Commemorated on June 1

On the day after every Great Feast, the Orthodox Church honors the one through whom the Feast is made possible. On the day following the Nativity of the Lord, for example, we celebrate the Synaxis of the Most Holy Theotokos (December 26). On the day after Theophany, we commemorate St John the Baptist (January 7), and so on.

Today we honor the all-Holy, good, and life-creating Spirit, Who descended upon the Apostles at Pentecost in the form of fiery tongues in fulfillment of the Lord’s promise to send the Comforter to His disciples (JN 14:16). That same Holy Spirit remains within the Church throughout the ages, guiding it “into all truth” (JN 16:13).

One of the hymns at Vespers on Saturday evening tells us that the Holy Spirit “provides all things. He gushes forth prophecy, He perfects the priesthood, ... He holds together the whole institution of the Church.”

At Vespers on the day of Pentecost, we hear that the Holy Spirit is “the Fountain of goodness, through Whom the Father is known, and the Son is glorified.” He is “the living Fountain of spiritual gifts” Who “purifies us from our sins.” It is by the Holy Spirit that “the prophets, divine Apostles, and martyrs are crowned.” He is the source of life and of sanctification.

In the services of this day, we sing the same hymns as on Pentecost, except the Canon of the Holy Spirit, which is sung at Compline. The Vigil is not prescribed for the eve of today’s feast. We sing the Great Doxology at Matins, but not the Polyeleos. The Irmos of the Ninth Ode (“Hail, O Queen, glory of mothers and virgins...”) is sung in place of the Song of the Theotokos (“My soul magnifies the Lord...”).

At the Liturgy, the priest or deacon chants the Entrance Verse (“Be exalted in Thy strength, O Lord. We will sing and praise Thy power.”) as on the day of Pentecost. “Holy God” replaces “As many as have been baptized....” The dismissal of Pentecost is also used.

This whole week is fast-free, and the Leave-taking of Pentecost occurs on Saturday.


SAINT OR FEAST POSTED THIS DATE 2014(with 2013's link here also and further:, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and even 2008!):