Weekly Diocesan Bulletin - Sunday, May 24, 2015

PDF | Word Document Subscribe | View HTML

wad-paypal-banner-780

Website | Calendar | Sebastian Press | Bookstore | Blog | Podcasts

eserbia  holyicon.org

WEEKLY DIOCESAN BULLETIN

Sunday, May 24, 2015


Seventh Sunday of Pascha: The Holy Fathers of the First Ecumenical Council; Saints Cyril & Methodius, Enlighteners of the Slavs


RESURRECTIONAL TROPARION - TONE SIX: The angelic powers were at Your tomb; the guards became as dead men.  Mary stood by Your grave, seeking Your most pure Body.  You did capture hell, not being tempted by it.  You did come to the Virgin, granting life.  O Lord who rose from the dead:  Glory to You!

ASCENSION TROPARION - TONE FOUR: You have ascended in glory, O Christ our God, granting joy to Your disciples by the promise of the Holy Spirit.  Through the blessing they were assured that You are the Son of God, the Redeemer of the world!

TROPARION TO THE HOLY FATHERS - TONE EIGHT: You are most glorious, O Christ our God!  You have established the Holy Fathers as lights on the earth!  Through them You have guided us to the true faith!  O greatly Compassionate One, glory to You!

TROPARION TO SAINTS CYRIL & METHODIUS - TONE FOUR: Divinely-wise Cyril and Methodius, equals to the Apostles and teachers of the Slavs, entreat the Master of all to strengthen all nations in Orthodoxy and unity of mind, to grant peace to the world and to save our souls.

RESURRECTIONAL KONTAKION - TONE SIX: When Christ God, the Giver of Life, raised all of the dead from the valleys of misery with His mighty hand, He bestowed resurrection on the human race. He is the Savior of all, the Resurrection, the Life, and God of all.

KONTAKION TO THE HOLY FATHERS - TONE EIGHT: The Apostles’ preaching and the Fathers’ doctrines have established one faith for the Church.  Adorned with the robe of truth, woven from heavenly theology; it defines and glorifies the great mystery of piety.

KONTAKION TO SAINTS CYRIL & METHODIUS - TONE THREE: Let us honor the sacred pair, who translated divine Scripture, pouring forth a fountain of divine knowledge from which we still draw today.  Now as you stand before the throne of the Most-high, we call you blessed O Cyril and Methodius, as you fervently pray for our souls.

ASCENSION KONTAKION - TONE SIX: When You fulfilled the dispensation for our sake, and unite earth to heaven:  You ascended in glory, O Christ our God, not being parted from those who love You, but remaining with them and crying:  I am with you and no one will be against you!

INSTEAD OF “IT IS TRULY MEET…”: Magnify, O my soul, Christ the Giver of Life, who has ascended from earth to heaven!  We magnify you, the Mother of God, who beyond reason and understanding gave birth in time to the Timeless One!

INSTEAD OF “WE HAVE SEEN THE TRUE LIGHT…”

ASCENSION TROPARION - TONE FOUR: You have ascended in glory, O Christ our God, granting joy to Your disciples by the promise of the Holy Spirit.  Through the blessing they were assured that You are the Son of God, the Redeemer of the world!


EPISTLE READING

The Prokimenon in the 4th Tone: Blessed are You, O Lord God of our Fathers, and praised and glorified is Your name forever!

Seventh Sunday of Pascha: Acts 20: 16-18, 28-36
In those days, it happened that Paul had decided to sail past Ephesus, so that he would not have to spend time in Asia; for he was hurrying to be at Jerusalem, if possible, on the Day of Pentecost. From Miletus he sent to Ephesus and called for the elders of the church.  And when they had come to him, he said to them, “You know, from the first day that I came to Asia, in what manner I always lived among you; therefore take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood.  For I know this, that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock.  Also from among yourselves men will rise up, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after themselves.  Therefore watch, and remember that for three years I did not cease to warn everyone night and day with tears.  So now, brethren, I commend you to God and to the word of His grace, which is able to build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified.  I have coveted no one’s silver or gold or apparel.  Yes, you yourselves know that these hands have provided for my necessities, and for those who were with me.  I have shown you in every way, by laboring like this, that you must support the weak.  And remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’”  And when he had said these things, he knelt down and prayed with them all.

For Saints Cyril & Methodius, Hebrews 7: 26 - 8: 2
Brethren, such a High Priest was fitting for us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and has become higher than the heavens; who does not need daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifices, first for His own sins and then for the people's, for this He did once for all when He offered up Himself.  For the law appoints as high priests men who have weakness, but the word of the oath, which came after the law, appoints the Son who has been perfected forever.  Now this is the main point of the things we are saying: we have such a High Priest, who is seated at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens, a Minister of the sanctuary and of the true tabernacle which the Lord erected, and not man.

The Alleluia VersesThe Lord, the God of gods, speaks and summons the earth from the rising of the sun to its setting! Gather to me my venerable ones, who made a covenant with me by sacrifice.

GOSPEL READING

Seventh Sunday of Pascha: John 17: 1-13
At that time, Jesus spoke these words, lifted up His eyes to heaven, and said, “Father, the hour has come.  Glorify Your Son, that Your Son also may glorify You, as You have given Him authority over all flesh, that He should give eternal life to as many as You have given Him.  And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.  I have glorified You on the earth.  I have finished the work which You have given Me to do.  And now,     O Father, glorify Me together with Yourself, with the glory which I had with You before the world was.  I have manifested Your name to the men whom You have given Me out of the world.  They were Yours, You gave them to Me, and they have kept Your word.  Now they have known that all things which You have given Me are from You.  For I have given to them the words which You have given Me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came forth from You; and they have believed that You sent Me.  I pray for them.  I do not pray for the world but for those whom You have given Me, for they are Yours.  And all Mine are Yours, and Yours are Mine, and I am glorified in them.  Now I am no longer in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to You.  Holy Father, keep through Your name those whom You have given Me, that they may be one as We are.  While I was with them in the world, I kept them in Your name.  Those whom You gave Me I have kept; and none of them is lost except the son of perdition, that the Scripture might be fulfilled.  But now I come to You, and these things I speak in the world, that they may have My joy fulfilled in themselves.”

For Saints Cyril & Methodius, Matthew 5: 14-19 
Jesus said, “You are the light of the world.  A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden.  Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house.  Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.  Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets.  I did not come to destroy but to fulfill.  For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled.  Whoever therefore breaks one of the least of these commandments, and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever does and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.”

Spiritual Articles
From The Prologue for May 11/24 by St. Nikolai Velimirovic:

Saints Cyril and Methodius, Equals to the Apostles
Saints Cyril and Methodius were brothers from Thessalonica, of distinguished and wealthy parents, Leo and Maria. The elder brother Methodius spent ten years as an officer among the Macedonian Slavs and thus learned the Slavic language. After that, Methodius withdrew to Mount Olympus and dedicated himself to monastic asceticism. It was here that Cyril (Constantine) later joined him. When the king of the Khazars, Kagan, requested preachers of the Christian Faith from Emperor Michael III, these two brothers were found and sent among the Khazars by command of the emperor. Converting King Kagan to the Christian Faith, they baptized him along with a great number of his chief assistants and an even greater number of the people. After some time they returned to Constantinople, where they compiled the Slavonic alphabet consisting of thirty-eight letters. They then proceeded to translate ecclesiastical books from Greek into Slavonic. At the request of Prince Rastislav, they traveled to Moravia, where they spread and confirmed the sacred Faith and made more copies of the books, distributing them to the priests to teach the youth. At the request of the pope, Cyril traveled to Rome. There he became ill and died, on February 14, 867. Then Methodius returned to Moravia and labored to strengthen the Christian Faith among the Slavs until his death. Following his death (he reposed in the Lord on April 6, 885) his disciples, the Five Followers, with St. Clement the bishop at their head, crossed the Danube River and traveled south into Macedonia. There, from Ohrid, they continued their labor among the Slavs, which Cyril and Methodius had begun in the north.

The Hieromartyr Mocius
Mocius was Roman by birth and a presbyter in Amphipolis, a town in Macedonia. He suffered during the reign of Diocletian. By prayer he destroyed the statue of the god Dionysius. This embittered certain pagans against him, but others he converted to the Faith. He was beheaded for Christ in the year 295.


Saint Nicodemus, Archbishop of Peæ
This great hierarch was a Serb by birth. He lived in asceticism on the Holy Mountain and was abbot of Hilandar Monastery. Following the death of Sava III, he was elected archbishop of “all the Serbian and coastal lands” in the year 1317. Nicodemus crowned King Milutin in the year 1321. He translated the Jerusalem Typicon into Serbian. In the introduction of this book, Nicodemus writes: “Almighty God, Who knows our weaknesses, will give us spiritual strength, but only if we first display effort.” He sincerely loved the ascetic life and labored to strengthen it throughout the Serbian land. He labored relentlessly to uproot the Bogomil heresy and to strengthen the Orthodox Faith. He reposed in the Lord in the year 1325. His miracle-working relics rest in the monastery at Peæ.

HYMN OF PRAISE: Saint Cyril
The Moslem leaders asked Cyril:
“How can there be three persons in God?

If God is one, from where are there three persons?

Our God is one, yours is three!”

Cyril replied: “It is not that way, it is not,
But it is as the shining sun which warms at noon,
Which has its own light, warmth, and circle.

But that is a pale picture of the Divine Triad,
Three Divine Persons, but One in Essence.

Through Christ, this truth is revealed.

Never will mortal man comprehend this;
God Himself revealed this; this the Church teaches.”

REFLECTION
In the Saracen encampment they asked St. Cyril: “How can Christians wage war and at the same time keep Christ’s commandment to pray to God for their enemies?” To this, St. Cyril replied: “If two commandments were written in one law and given to men for fulfilling, which man would be a better follower of the law: the one who fulfilled one commandment or the one who fulfilled both?” The Saracens replied: “Undoubtedly, he who fulfills both commandments.” St. Cyril continued: “Christ our God commands us to pray to God for those who persecute us and even to do good to them, but He also said to us, Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends (John 15:13). That is why we bear the insults that our enemies cast at us individually and why we pray to God for them. However, as a society, we defend one another and lay down our lives, so that you would not enslave our brethren, would not enslave their souls with their bodies, and would not destroy them in both body and soul.”

CONTEMPLATION
Contemplate the action of God the Holy Spirit upon the apostles:
1. How He makes the simple wise;
2. How He makes the inarticulate eloquent.

HOMILY on the irresistible will of God
I say to myself, I will not mention Him, I will speak in His name no more. But then it becomes like fire burning in my heart, shut up in my bones; I grow weary holding it in, I cannot endure it (Jeremiah 20:9).

If anyone still doubts that God spoke through the prophets, let him read this confession of the great prophet Jeremiah, and let him doubt no more. The prophet confesses that he had decided not to speak anymore in the name of the Lord. Why? Because so few paid attention to his word. If anyone heeded his word, the prophet endured reproach and derision daily (Jeremiah 20:8). But when he decided to remain silent, did he in fact remain silent? No, he could not: I grow weary holding it in, I cannot endure it! He was pressed by the irresistible power of the Spirit of God to speak, and he had to speak. Therefore, it is not the affair of the prophet whether he is going to speak or not: that is the affair of the All-powerful Spirit of God. The prophet is merely the chosen vessel of the All-powerful Spirit of God. All of Holy Scripture is written thus: not according to the will of man but according to the will of God, and not according to the mind of man but according to the mind of God.

How is the word of God felt when it enters the prophet from the Spirit of God? This the great Jeremiah explains from his personal experience:It becomes like fire burning in my heart, shut up in my bones. That is, it is an inspiration from the All-powerful Spirit of God. Under such irresistible internal pressure—like the pressure of fire shut up in the bones—holy men of God did their writing. And many of them cried out: I grow weary holding it in, I cannot endure it anymore. Who will oppose the Spirit of God without punishment and destruction? Who will withstand Him when He wills to say or do something?

O my brethren, the action of God the Holy Spirit is irresistible!

O All-powerful Spirit of God, direct us irresistibly on the path of salvation.

To Thee be glory and praise forever. Amen.

 THE CHRISTIAN
HERITAGE OF KOSOVO
AND METOHIJA

The Historical and Spiritual Heartland of the Serbian People

the chrisitan heritage of kosovo and metohija 250

View a PDF of the 
First Introductory pages 
of this monumental collection

View Introductory Video 

ORDER YOUR COPY TODAY!


css logo

Week 1: July 12 – July 18
Week 2: July 19 – July 25
Week 3: July 26 – August 1

Limited places left
for the 2015 Season
There is a waiting list
for Week Three

EARLY REGISTRATION
DEADLINE
MAY 15, 2015

REGISTER TODAY!

diocesan days 2015 sm banner

NEWEST PUBLICATIONS

ArtofSeeing

Read More...

synaxarion flyer

Read More...

festive fast

Read More...

kss brosura
The Ministry of the Circle of Serbian Sisters
Read More...

thunderbold-front-sm

THE THUNDERBOLT OF
EVER-LIVING FIRE

Read More... 


Also on Kindle 
at Amazon:
 

Our Newest Addition
The Art of Seeing
by Maximos Constas


The Thunderbolt 
of Ever-Living Fire


Man and the God-Man

The Meaning of Reality

The One and the Many

The Prologue of Ohrid

Treasures New and Old

History, Truth, Holiness


malibu-stamatis
THE DYNAMIC EARTH
Stamatis Skliris’ Vision of the Past, Present, and Future
of American Natural Treasures


http://holyicon.org/shop

VIEW CATALOGUE
 


 HELP SUPPORT 
THE WESTERN AMERICAN DIOCESE AND THE MANY ONGOING MINISTRIES...

download

 

 

Weekly Diocesan Bulletin - Sunday, May 10, 2015

PDF | Word Document Subscribe | View HTML

wad-paypal-banner-780

Website | Calendar | Sebastian Press | Bookstore | Blog | Podcasts

eserbia  holyicon.org

WEEKLY DIOCESAN BULLETIN

Sunday, May 10, 2015


Fifth Sunday of Pascha: The Samaritan Woman at the Well; Burning of the
Relics of Saint Sava on Vrachar

PASCHAL TROPARION – TONE ONE: Christ is risen from the dead, trampling down death by death, and upon those in the tombs bestowing life!

RESURRECTIONAL TROPARION - TONE FOUR: When the women disciples of the Lord learned from the angel the joyous message of Your Resurrection, they cast away the ancestral curse and elatedly told the apostles:  Death is overthrown!  Christ God is risen, granting the world great mercy!

MID-PENTECOST TROPARION - TONE EIGHT: In the middle of the Feast, O Savior, fill my thirsting soul with the waters of piety, as You cried to all: ‘If anyone thirst, let him come to Me and drink!’  O Christ God, Fountain of our life, glory to You!

KONTAKION TO THE SAMARITAN WOMAN  - TONE EIGHT: The Samaritan woman came to the well in faith; she saw You, the Water of Wisdom, and drank abundantly!  She inherited the Kingdom on high, and is ever glorified.

MID-PENTECOST KONTAKION - TONE FOUR: Christ God, the Creator and Master of all, cried to all in the midst of the feast of the law: ‘Come and draw the water of immortality!’  We fall before You and faithfully cry: ‘Grant us Your mercies, for You are the Fountain of our life!’

PASCHAL KONTAKION - TONE EIGHT: You descended into the tomb, O Immortal; You destroyed the power of death. In victory You arose, O Christ God, proclaiming “Rejoice” to the myrrh-bearing women, granting peace to Your disciples, and bestowing resurrection on the fallen.

INSTEAD OF “IT IS TRULY MEET…”: The angel cried to the Lady Full of Grace: Rejoice, O Pure Virgin!  Again I say: Rejoice!  Your Son is risen from His three days in the tomb!  With Himself He has raised all the dead!  Rejoice, all ye people!  Shine!  Shine!  O New Jerusalem!  The glory of the Lord has shone on you!  Exult now and be glad, O Zion!  Be radiant, O Pure Theotokos, in the Resurrection of your Son!

INSTEAD OF “WE HAVE SEEN THE TRUE LIGHT…”: Christ is risen from the dead, trampling down death by death, and upon those in the tombs bestowing life! (once)


EPISTLE READING


The Prokimenon in the 3rd Tone: Sing praises to our God, sing praises!  Sing praises to our King, sing praises!

Fifth Sunday of Pascha: Acts 11: 19-26; 29-30  
In those days, those who were scattered after the persecution that arose over Stephen traveled as far as Phoenicia, Cyprus and Antioch, preaching the word to no one but the Jews only.  But some of them were men from Cyprus and Cyrene, who, when they had come to Antioch, spoke to the Hellenists, preaching the Lord Jesus.  And the hand of the Lord was with them, and a great number believed and turned to the Lord. Then news of these things came to the ears of the church in Jerusalem, and they sent out Barnabas to go as far as Antioch.  When he came and had seen the grace of God, he was glad, and encouraged them all that with purpose of heart they should continue with the Lord.  For he was a good man, full of the Holy Spirit and of faith.  And a great many people were added to the Lord.  Then Barnabas departed for Tarsus to seek Saul.  And when he had found him, he brought him to Antioch.  So it was that for a whole year they assembled with the church and taught a great many people.  And the disciples were first called Christians in Antioch.  Then the disciples, each according to his ability, determined to send relief to the brethren dwelling in Judea.  This they also did, and sent it to the elders by the hands of Barnabas and Saul.

The Alleluia Verses: 
Go forth and prosper and reign, because of truth and meekness and righteousness.  You love righteousness and hate iniquity.

GOSPEL READING

Fifth Sunday of Pascha: John 4: 5-42 
At that time, Jesus came to a city of Samaria which is called Sychar, near the plot of ground that Jacob gave to his son Joseph.  Now Jacob’s well was there. Jesus therefore, being wearied from His journey, sat thus by the well.  It was about the sixth hour.  A woman of Samaria came to draw water.  Jesus said to her, “Give Me a drink.”  For His disciples had gone away into the city to buy food.  Then the woman of Samaria said to Him, “How is it that You, being a Jew, ask a drink from me, a Samaritan woman?”  For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans.  Jesus answered and said to her, “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, ‘Give Me a drink’, you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water.”  The woman said to Him, “Sir, You have nothing to draw with, and the well is deep.  Where then do You get that living water?  Are You greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well and drank from it himself as well as his sons and his livestock?”  Jesus answered and said to her, “Whoever drinks of this water will thirst again, but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst.  But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life.”  The woman said to Him, “Sir, give me this water, that I may not thirst, nor come here to draw.”  Jesus said to her, “Go, call your husband, and come here.”  The woman answered and said, “I have no husband.”  Jesus said to her, “You have well said, ‘I have no husband’, for you have had five husbands, and the one whom you now have is not your husband; in that you spoke truly.”  The woman said to Him, “Sir, I perceive that You are a prophet.  Our fathers worshiped on this mountain, and you Jews say that in Jerusalem is the place where one ought to worship.”  Jesus said to her, “Woman, believe Me, the hour is coming when you will neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem, worship the Father.  You worship what you do not know; we know what we worship, for salvation is of the Jews.  But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him.  God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”  The woman said to Him, “I know the Messiah is coming” (who is called Christ).  “When He comes, He will tell us all things.”  Jesus said to her, “I who speak to you am He.”  And at this point His disciples came and they marveled that He talked with a woman; yet no one said, “What do You seek?” or, “Why are You talking with her?”  The woman then left her waterpot, went her way into the city, and said to the men, “Come, see a Man who told me all things that I ever did.  Could this be the Christ?”  Then they went out of the city and came to Him.  In the meantime His disciples urged Him, saying, “Rabbi, eat.”  But He said to them, “I have food to eat of which you do not know.”  Therefore the disciples said to one another, “Has anyone brought Him anything to eat?”  Jesus said to them, “My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me, and to finish His work.  Do you not say, ‘There are still four months and then comes the harvest?’  Behold I say to you, lift up your eyes and look at the fields, for they are already white for harvest!  And he who reaps receives wages, and gathers fruit for eternal life, that both he who sows and he who reaps may rejoice together.  For in this the saying is true: ‘One sows and another reaps.’  I sent you to reap that for which you have not labored; others have labored, and you have entered into their labors.”  And many of the Samaritans of that city believed in Him because of the word of the woman who testified, “He told me all what I ever did.”  So when the Samaritans had come to Him they urged Him to stay with them; and He stayed there two days.  And many more believed because of His own word.  Then they said to the woman, “Now we believe, not because of what you said, for we ourselves have heard Him and we know that this is indeed the Christ, the Savior of the world.”

SPIRITUAL ARTICLES
From The Prologue for April 27/May 10
by St. Nikolai Velimirovic:


The Holy Apostle Simeon
He was the son of Cleopas, who was the brother of Joseph, the betrothed of the All-holy Mother of God. Seeing the miracles of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, Simeon believed, and was numbered among the Seventy Apostles. With great zeal and courage he preached the Gospel of Christ throughout Judea. When the iniquitous Jews killed James, the brother of the Lord and the first Bishop of the Church of Jerusalem, by hurling him from the heights of the Temple and beating him over the head with a club, then this Simeon, a cousin of James, was appointed Bishop of Jerusalem. And Simeon, as the second bishop of the Holy City, governed the Church of God with wisdom and strength unto great old age. He was over a hundred years old when he suffered. His suffering was in this manner: During the reign of Emperor Trajan, a twofold persecution began in Palestine—against the descendants of David and against the Christians. Wicked men accused Simeon of being both. St. Simeon endured harsh torture and was finally crucified, as had been the Lord, Whom he had faithfully served on earth.

The Venerable Stephen, Bishop of Vladimir
Stephen was a disciple of St. Theodosius of the Monastery of the Kiev Caves. For a while, Stephen was Abbot of the Monastery of the Caves, and he labored much in the regulation and organization of the monastic life and in the adornment of churches. Then the devil incited malice among the monks against Stephen; not only did they remove him from the abbacy but they banished him from the monastery. But God, Who does not abandon the righteous under the humiliation of the unrighteous for long, directed the life of the Venerable Stephen so that he was elected as Bishop of Vladimir. As a hierarch of God, Stephen governed the Church until old age and reposed peacefully in the Lord in the year 1094.

The Burning of the Relics of Saint Sava, Archbishop of Serbia
The body of St. Sava was buried in Mileševo Monastery. During the time of the Turkish tyranny, the Serbian people gathered around the relics of their saint to seek comfort and healing. Fearing that an insurrection against the Turks might arise from that place, Sinan Pasha of Belgrade ordered that the relics of St. Sava be brought to Belgrade and he burned them there on Vraèar hill, on April 27, 1594. But with the burning of the relics of this saint, the demon-ridden Pasha did not burn the saint, who remains alive before the throne of God in the heavens and in the hearts of his people on earth.

The Venerable John, the Confessor
John was the abbot of the Cathares Monastery. This monastery was established near Nicaea during the reign of Justin in the sixth century. Because of his veneration of icons and his defense of the veneration of icons, John suffered much at the hands of the Emperors Leo and Theophilus and died in exile, in about the year 832.

HYMN OF PRAISE: The Holy Apostle Simeon
Simeon, radiant with youth and strength,
When he drew near to the gracious Teacher,
Saw not a relative known to him according to the flesh
But the unknown God in bodily form.

And by this great light the entire world became dark to him.

When he came to himself he parted with the world,
And as a powerful eagle in lofty flight,
He raised his spirit toward heaven and the heavenly world.

Through Christ he recognized the goodness of God,
Immortal Life, immortal beauty.

Through Christ he further recognized true Man.

Thus he scorned the glory and the honor of this age,
And as a honeybee he gave himself to labor,
Not grieving over his youth, not grieving over his body,
But fulfilling the Law of Christ unto the end,
Becoming worthy of Paradise divine.

And, crucified upon a cross, the hundred-year-old elder
Felt not the sting of death,
For long ago he had resurrected in spirit;
Now he waits to resurrect in glory in the body.


REFLECTION
The true Faith must be persecuted in this world. The Savior Himself said this clearly and openly to His apostles. St. Apollinarius of Hierapolis, in writing against the Montanist heretics, says: “Let them tell us before God: who, out of all their prophets, beginning with Montanus and his wives, was persecuted by the Jews and killed by the ungodly? No one. Who from among them was taken away for the name of Christ and was crucified on the cross? Again, no one. Have any of the women ever been flogged or stoned in the Jewish synagogues? Never and nowhere.” The Orthodox saint is saying that the true Faith, on the other hand, must be persecuted in this world. Heresies are generally closer to the worldly and demonic spirit, and thus the world and the demons do not persecute their own. To be constantly persecuted—with brief intervals in between—is a characteristic of the Faith and the Orthodox Church. This persecution has existed, either from without or within—externally from unbelievers and internally from heretics—throughout all of history.

CONTEMPLATION
Contemplate the resurrected Lord Jesus:
1. How He commanded that repentance and forgiveness of sins be preached in His name;
2. How He commanded His disciples to await the Father’s promise of the power of the Holy Spirit from on high.

HOMILY on the persecution of the godly
We must through much tribulation enter into the Kingdom of God (Acts 14:22). Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution (II Timothy 3:12).

The Lord Jesus both prophesied this and proved it true by His own example. The apostles also said this and by their example they proved it. All the God-bearing Fathers of the Church, the confessors and the martyrs also said this and proved it by their example. Therefore, is there any need to doubt that it is through a narrow door that one enters the Kingdom of God? Should we hesitate for a moment as to whether we must through much tribulation enter into the Kingdom of God? No, there is no basis or justification for doubt. Can sheep live among the wolves and not be attacked by them? Can a candle burn amidst crosswinds and not be bent to and fro? Can a fruitful tree grow alongside the road and not be disturbed by passersby? Thus, the Church of pious souls cannot but be persecuted again and again—by heathens, by idolaters, by heretics, by apostates, by passions and vices, by sin and transgressions, by the world, and by demons. Thus, not one devout soul can remain without persecution, be it external or internal, until it is separated from the body and the world. Someone may take issue with this and try to prove something different, according to his own calculation and logic. But here neither the mind nor the logic of one man is of any avail. Thousands who were crucified speak otherwise, thousands who were burned alive cry out otherwise, thousands who were beheaded prove otherwise, and thousands who were drowned witness otherwise. O my brethren, the Christian Faith is mighty not only when it agrees with sensual reasoning and sensual logic, but when (and especially when) it contradicts sensual reasoning and sensual logic.

Those who want to live a godly life will be persecuted. This the Apostle prophesied at the beginning of the Christian era, and twenty Christian centuries render a many-voiced echo to confirm the truth of the prophecy.

O resurrected Lord, grant us light, that we may be pious to the end, and give us the strength to endure persecution to the end.

To Thee be glory and praise forever. Amen.

 THE CHRISTIAN
HERITAGE OF KOSOVO
AND METOHIJA

The Historical and Spiritual Heartland of the Serbian People

the chrisitan heritage of kosovo and metohija 250

View a PDF of the 
First Introductory pages 
of this monumental collection

View Introductory Video 

ORDER YOUR COPY TODAY!


css logo

Week 1: July 12 – July 18
Week 2: July 19 – July 25
Week 3: July 26 – August 1

Only 33 places left
for the 2015 Season
There is a waiting list
for Week Three

EARLY REGISTRATION
DEADLINE
MAY 15, 2015

REGISTER TODAY!

diocesan days 2015 sm banner

NEWEST PUBLICATIONS

ArtofSeeing

Read More...

synaxarion flyer

Read More...

festive fast

Read More...

kss brosura
The Ministry of the Circle of Serbian Sisters
Read More...

thunderbold-front-sm

THE THUNDERBOLT OF
EVER-LIVING FIRE

Read More... 


Also on Kindle 
at Amazon:
 

Our Newest Addition
The Art of Seeing
by Maximos Constas


The Thunderbolt 
of Ever-Living Fire


Man and the God-Man

The Meaning of Reality

The One and the Many

The Prologue of Ohrid

Treasures New and Old

History, Truth, Holiness


malibu-stamatis
THE DYNAMIC EARTH
Stamatis Skliris’ Vision of the Past, Present, and Future
of American Natural Treasures


http://holyicon.org/shop

VIEW CATALOGUE
 


 HELP SUPPORT 
THE WESTERN AMERICAN DIOCESE AND THE MANY ONGOING MINISTRIES...

download

 

westsrbdio.org
Switch mode views: