Prologue of Ohrid


June 21


Julian was of noble and senatorial origin. He lived in Tarsus in Cilicia and suffered during the reign of Diocletian. Even though he was only eighteen years of age when he was subjected to torture for the Faith, St. Julian was sufficiently educated and strengthened in Christian piety. The imperial deputy led him from town to town for an entire year, torturing him and all the while trying to persuade him to deny Christ. Julian's mother followed her son at a distance. When the deputy seized Julian's mother and sent her to counsel her son to deny Christ, she spoke to him for three days in prison, giving him the opposite advice, teaching him and encouraging him not to lose heart but to go to his death with thanksgiving and courage. The torturers then sewed Julian in a sack with sand, scorpions and serpents and cast the sack into the sea, and Julian's mother also died under torture. His relics were thrown onto the shore by the waves, and the faithful translated them to Alexandria and buried them honorably in the year 290 A.D. St. Julian's relics were later translated to Antioch. St. John Chrysostom himself delivered a eulogy [an oration of praise] on the holy martyr Julian. "From the mouth of the martyr," Chrysoston said, "proceeded a holy voice, and together with the voice a light emanated brighter than the rays of the sun." Further, he added: "Take anyone, be it a madman or one possessed, and bring him to the grave of this saint, where the relics of the martyr repose, and you will see how he [the demon] without fail will leap out and flee as from a burning fire." It is obvious from these words how numerous must have been the miracles that had taken place at the grave of St. Julian.


Julius and Julian were brothers from the Greek province of Mirmidonia. From childhood they were reared in Christianity with the vow that they would always live in chastity and serve the Church. Julius was a presbyter and Julian a deacon. They received a decree [grammata] from Emperor Theodosius the Younger to destroy pagan temples and build Christian churches throughout the empire. Like two apostles, these two brothers converted non-Christians into Christians in the East and in the West [of the empire] and built churches. They built more than one hundred churches during their lifetime. They reposed peacefully in the Lord near Milan. The inhabitants of Milan invoke the help of St. Julius against wolves.


Archil was the son of King Stephen and the grandson of the great Georgian King Wakahtang Gorgaslan. King Archil, a great Christian and a defender of Christianity, was tortured by the Muslims and beheaded for Christ on March 20, 744 A.D. He was eighty years old when he suffered for the Lord and took up his habitation in blessed eternity.


Luarsab's father, George X, suffered for the Faith and was poisoned by a Persian Shah. Luarsab, however, was cast into prison near Shiraz, where he languished for seven years. Then, by order of Shah Abbas I, he was hanged in prison with two of his servants on June 21, 1622 A.D. A heavenly light was seen over his grave.



When Julius and his brother Julian

Had built their ninety-ninth church

To the Most-high God,

Julian, then, a tomb constructed

For his brother, the holy Julius.

And when his brother the grave he showed,

Julius to him, meekly said:

"Prepare yourself, my brother in the flesh.

This grave, for you, was built.

Prepare yourself to God to go

Before your brother, the sinful Julius."

And God Julius designated

A hundredth church yet to build

On a certain isolated island.

As the most glorious Julius said, so it happened.

Before the older brother, the younger brother reposed,

And the older brother the hundredth church added.

And when the hundredth, on the island, he built,

Then he also in eternity took up his habitation.


When a man begins to train himself in keeping silent, silence seems to him to be lesser than speech; but when he is trained in silence, then he knows that speech is lesser than silence. A monk said to St. Sisoes: "I would like to preserve my heart but I cannot." The elder responded: "How can we preserve the heart when the gate to our heart--the tongue--stands open?" Charillos, the nephew of Lycurgus, was once asked why his uncle issued so few laws. He replied: "For those who speak little, many laws are not needed."


To contemplate the miraculous healing of the blind Bartimeus: And they came to Jericho. And as He was leaving Jericho with His disciples and a very great crowd, Bartimeus, a blind man the son of Timeus, was sitting by the wayside begging (St. Mark 10:46):

1. How Bartimeus cried out to the Lord with faith for healing, and the Lord healed him;

2. How even I, blinded in soul, sit by the road where the Lord passes by, and if I cry out to Him, He will heal me.


About sowing and reaping

"He who sows iniquity reaps calamity [misfortune]" (Proverbs 22:8).

If you commit iniquity, calamity [misfortune] may pass you by on the very day you commit the iniquity, but calamity [misfortune] has heard the voice of iniquity and unavoidably will come in its own time.

Some sowing is sweet, but the harvest is bitter. Some sowing resembles life, but the fruit and harvest of that sowing is death.

Pay attention and learn from Holy Scripture:

Eve sowed iniquity through disobedience, and pain in childbirth befell her.

Cain sowed iniquity through fratricide, and pain and sleepless wandering throughout the earth befell him.

Sodom and Gomorrah sowed iniquity, and reaped the pain of a horrible death.

The sons of Eli the High Priest sowed iniquity, for they defiled themselves near the Ark of the Covenant, and they reaped suffering, for they bitterly lost their lives in battle.

Call to mind Saul, his iniquity and his sufferings. And again, call to mind Ahab and Jezebel. And again, call to mind Herod and Judas. And again, call to mind today and yesterday and the day before yesterday and every other day gone by, and listen to the words of every day: He who sows iniquity reaps calamity [misfortune]! Is there a village in the world that does not have this teaching before its eyes? Is there a roof that does not conceal beneath it such knowledge? Is there any living man who has not witnessed this teaching in the living examples around him?

O All-wise Lord, if we did not know Your will we would be less responsible. But since You gave us to know Your will, O All-merciful One, grant us the strength to fulfill it throughout all the days of our lives.

To Thee be glory and praise forever. Amen.
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