11th Week after Pentecost. Tone one.
Today is fast-free!
2 Corinthians 2:3-15 (Monday)
And I wrote this very thing to you, lest, when I came, I should have sorrow over those from whom I ought to have joy, having confidence in you all that my joy is the joy of you all. For out of much affliction and anguish of heart I wrote to you, with many tears, not that you should be grieved, but that you might know the love which I have so abundantly for you. But if anyone has caused grief, he has not grieved me, but all of you to some extent-not to be too severe. This punishment which was inflicted by the majority is sufficient for such a man, so that, on the contrary, you ought rather to forgive and comfort him, lest perhaps such a one be swallowed up with too much sorrow. Therefore I urge you to reaffirm your love to him. For to this end I also wrote, that I might put you to the test, whether you are obedient in all things. Now whom you forgive anything, I also forgive. For if indeed I have forgiven anything, I have forgiven that one for your sakes in the presence of Christ, lest Satan should take advantage of us; for we are not ignorant of his devices. Furthermore, when I came to Troas to preach Christ’s gospel, and a door was opened to me by the Lord, I had no rest in my spirit, because I did not find Titus my brother; but taking my leave of them, I departed for Macedonia. Now thanks be to God who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and through us diffuses the fragrance of His knowledge in every place. For we are to God the fragrance of Christ among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing.
Matthew 23:13-22 (Monday)
But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you shut up the kingdom of heaven against men; for you neither go in yourselves, nor do you allow those who are entering to go in. Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you devour widows’ houses, and for a pretense make long prayers. Therefore you will receive greater condemnation. Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you travel land and sea to win one proselyte, and when he is won, you make him twice as much a son of hell as yourselves. Woe to you, blind guides, who say, ‘Whoever swears by the temple, it is nothing; but whoever swears by the gold of the temple, he is obliged to perform it.’ Fools and blind! For which is greater, the gold or the temple that sanctifies the gold? And, ‘Whoever swears by the altar, it is nothing; but whoever swears by the gift that is on it, he is obliged to perform it.’ Fools and blind! For which is greater, the gift or the altar that sanctifies the gift? Therefore he who swears by the altar, swears by it and by all things on it. He who swears by the temple, swears by it and by Him who dwells in it. And he who swears by heaven, swears by the throne of God and by Him who sits on it.
Saints and Feasts Celebrated Today
“Svensk” (“of the Kiev Caves”) (1288) Icon of the Mother of God.
Svensk-Pechersk Icon of the Mother of God has two festal celebrations: on 3
May on the day of death of the Monk Feodosii of Pechersk (Vide concerning
him under that day), and on 17 August on the day of the death of the Monk
Alypii of Pechersk, who wrote the icon. The 17 August day of celebration was
established in the year 1815 in thanksgiving for the deliverance of the city of
Bryansk (around which the icon appeared in 1288) from its invasion during the
1812 Napoleonic War.
St. Tbeli Abuseridze of Khikhuni, Adjara (13th c.) (Georgia).
The holy Father Tbeli Abuseridze lived and labored in the 13th century. His father John, the archduke of Upper Atchara, perished in a battle with the Turks. After Tbelis mother was widowed, she was tonsured a nun and given the name Katherine. Tbelis brothers, Abuseri and Bardan, were also well-known figures in their time.
St. Tbeli received an education befitting his noble rank and succeeded in fully developing his natural abilities.
St. Tbeli left an indelible mark on the history of Georgian culture as a hymnographer, an astronomer, an expert in sacred music, and a scholar of diverse interests. We know from his works that he built a church in honor of St. George in the village of Khikhani (in upper Atchara), and it has been suggested that he composed most of his works, including a chronicle of his own ancestry, in that village. He had seven children whom he brought there, and at the end of his chronicle he left a second testament, commanding that his familys future generations be brought there as well.
St. Tbeli contributed immensely to the life of Gelati Academy. Historians believe it was there that he received the broad education that allowed him to express himself in so many different fields. St. Tbelis collection of hymns to St. John the Baptist, St. John the Theologian, and St. John Chrysostom reveals his true piety and talent as a writer of the Church. The profound theological ideas, the symbolic and mystical comprehension of phenomena, the knowledge of the visible and comprehension of the invisible evident in this work paint St. Tbeli as one equally endowed as both a scholar and a theologian.
St. Tbeli was fascinated by the science of chronology, and he compiled a work called Chronicles: Complete Commentaries and Rules to address some of the problems related to chronology. Combining a solid understanding of astronomy and history, this work conveys the cosmic meaning of the Julian calendar and Christian eschatology. St. Tbelis famous hagiographical work The New Miracle of Great-martyr George contains valuable historical information about the Abuseridze familys efforts to revive Georgian culture during the ancient feudal epoch.
While pursuing his literary and scholarly interests, St. Tbeli also labored as a holy and God-fearing pastor. (Scholars believe that the saint was a bishop of Tbeti, from which he received his appellation Tbeli.) The Georgian Apostolic Church has numbered our Holy Father Tbeli Abuseridze among the saints in recognition of the countless good deeds he performed on behalf of the Church and its people.
Martyr Myron of Cyzicus (250).
The Holy Martyr
Myron was a presbyter in Achaeia (Greece), and lived during the III
Century. He suffered in the year 250 under the emperor Decius (249-251). The
presbyter was gentle and kind to people, but he was also courageous in the
defense of his spiritual children. One time, on the feast of the Nativity of
Christ, he was celebrating Divine-services. The local governor Antipater came
into the church with soldiers so as to arrest those praying there and to
subject them to torture. Seeing this, Saint Myron began heatedly to plead for
his flock, denouncing the governor for his cruelty. The saint was delivered
over to torture, they took him and struck at his body with iron rods. They
then threw the presbyter into a red-hot oven, but the Lord preserved the martyr
at the very moment when about 150 men at a nearby pagan temple were scorched
by the oven fire. The governor then began to demand the martyr to worship
idols. Having received from Saint Myron a firm refusal, Antipater ordered the
leather thongs to be cut from his skin. Saint Myron took one of the leather
thongs and threw it in the face of his tormentor. Falling into a rage,
Antipater gave orders to strike Saint Myron all over his stripped body, and
then to deliver the martyr over to wild beasts for devouring. But the beasts
would not touch him. Perceiving himself defeated, Antipater in his blind rage
committed suicide. They then took Saint Myron to the city of Kizika, where he
was beheaded by the sword (+ 250).
Venerable Alypius the Iconographer of the Kiev Caves (1114).
The Monk Alypii of
Pechersk, one of the first and finest of Russian iconographers, was a
monastic novice of the Monk Nikon (Comm. 23 March), and from his youthful years
pursued asceticism at the Kievo-Pechersk monastery. He studied the iconography
of the Greek masters, and from the year 1083 beautifying the Pechersk church of
the Uspenie (Dormition) of the MostHoly Mother of God. The Monk Alypii wrote
icons gratis. If he learned that in some church the icons had become worn, he
took them with him and unmercenarily restored them. If it so happened that they
paid him for his work, the monk disbursed one part for the obtaining of
iconographic materials, the second part he distributed to the poor, and only
the third did he keep for himself. The Monk Alypii was never famous, and he did
the iconography only so as to serve God. He was raised to the dignity of
priestmonk and was known for a gift of wonderworking while still alive: the
Monk Alypii healed a Kievan man suffering from leprosy and decay of the body by
anointing the wounds of the sick man with paints, prepared for the writing of
icons. Many icons done by the monk were glorified by wonderworking. A
particular instance is known, when Angels of God helped him in the holy task of
writing icons. A certain Kievan man, having built a church, entrusted two Pechersk
monks to commission the icons for it. The monks concealed the money and said
nothing to the Monk Alypii. Having waited a long time for the carrying out of
the commission, the Kievan man turned to the hegumen with a complaint against
the monk, and here only did they discover that he had not heard of the
commission. When they brought the boards given by the customer, it turned out
that on them already were done beautiful images. And when the church built for
the icons was consumed by fire, all of the icons remained unharmed. One of
these icons ( the Uspenie of the MostHoly Mother of God) having received the
title Vladimir-Rostovsk (celebrated 15 August), was taken by GreatPrince
Vladimir Monomakh (1113‑1125) to a Rostov church built by him.
Another time, an
Angel wrote an icon in honour of the Uspenie (Dormition) of the MostHoly Mother
of God, when the Monk Alypii lay in a pre-death illness. And in this the Angel
accepted the soul of the Monk Alypii (he died on 17 August not earlier than the
year 1114). He was buried in the Nearer Caves (Comm. Sobor 28 September). Of
the right hand of the Monk Alypii the first three fingers were folded perfectly
alike, and the last two were bent to the palm in such prayerful manner of
signing himself with the sign of the cross did the monk die. One of the icons
of the Monk Alypii the MostHoly Mother of God with the Infant-Saviour,
surviving from the time of the Monks Antonii and Feodosii of Pechersk is now
preserved in the State Tretyakov Gallery (named the Svensk, and celebrated 3
May and 17 August).
Martyrs Paul and his sister Juliana of Syria (273).
The Holy Martyrs
Paul and his sister Juliania were executed under the emperor Aurelian
(270-275) in the Phoenician city of Ptolemaida. One time the emperor had
occasion to journey to Ptolemaida. Among those meeting him was Paul, who signed
himself with the Sign of the Cross, and this was noticed. They arrested him and
threw him in prison. On the following day, when they brought him to trial, he
openly and boldly confessed his faith in Christ, for which he was subjected to
fierce tortures. Juliania, seeing the suffering of her brother, began in front
of everyone to denounce the emperor for his injustice and cruelty, for which
she was likewise subjected to torture. They beat the martyrs, tore at their
bodies with iron hooks, scorched them over red-hot grates, but they were not
able to break the wondrous endurance of the Lord’s confessors. Three soldiers
torturing the saints were struck by the magnanimous spirit of the martyrs, and
they in turn believed in Christ. These newly chosen of God were named Quadratus,
Acacius and Stratonicus, and they were immediately executed. The tormentor
tried to seduce Saint Juliania with a promise to take her in marriage, if she
were to renounce Christ, but the saint refused the offer of the tempter and
remained steadfast. By order of the emperor they gave the martyress over to an
house of ill repute for defiling, but the Lord preserved her there also: anyone
who tried to touch the saint lost their sight. Then the enraged emperor
commanded that they again burn at the bodies of the saints. The people crowding
about and seeing the suffering of the saints began to murmur loudly, and
Aurelian gave orders to behead the martyrs immediately. With gladdened face the
brother and sister went to execution singing: “For Thou (Lord) hath saved
us from the vexatious and hath shamed those hating us” (Ps. 43 : 7).
Martyrs Thyrsus, Leucius , and Coronatus , with others at Caesarea in Bithynia (250).
Therses, Leucius, Coronatus and their Companions suffered in Bythnian
Caesarea and Apollonia under the emperor Decius (249-251). (It is possible that
Coronatus is the same person as Cornutus, whose commemoration is on 12
Martyr Patroclus of Troyes (3rd c.) ( Gaul ).
Patrocles lived during the III Century under the emperor Aurelian
(270-275). It is known, that he was a native of the city of Tricassinum (now
the city of Troyes in France) and led a pious Christian life: he loved to pray,
to read the Holy Scriptures, to fast and to be charitable to the poor. For this
the Lord sent down upon him the gift of wonderworking. The emperor Aurelian
summoned Saint Patrocles to himself and commanded him to worship idols,
promising for this great honours and riches. The saint disdained idol-worship
saying that the emperor himself was a beggar. “How canst thou term me, the
emperor, a beggar?” questioned Aurelian. The saint answered: “Thou
dost possess many earthly treasures, but thou hast not Heavenly treasures,
because thou believest not in Christ and in the future life thou shalt not
receive paradisical blessedness therefore thou art poor”. Aurelian in
answer sentenced him to beheading by the sword. Soldiers led him to the banks
of the River Sequanum (now the Seine), but suddenly their eyes were beclouded,
and Saint Patrocles at this time went across the river on the water and began
to pray on an hill on the other river-bank. Coming to themselves, some of the
soldiers were astounded at the disappearance of the martyr and they glorified
God, but others attributed the miracle to magic. A pagan woman pointed out to
the soldiers that Saint Patrocles was situated on the other bank of the river.
Crossing over there, the soldiers killed the martyr (+ c. 275). His body was
buried by night by the priest Eusebius and deacon Liberius.
Martyrs Straton, Philip, Eutychian , and Cyprian of Nicomedia (303).
Straton, Philip, Eutykhian and Kyprian suffered at Nikomedia. Visiting the
circus, they taught people to cease with idol-worship and they converted many
pagans to Christ. The governor, observing that the people were leaving the
circus, summoned to himself the martyrs, who firmly confessed their faith in
Christ and for this they were given over to wild beasts for devouring. The
beasts did not touch them, and the martyrs were then subjected to torture and
thrown into a fire (+ c. 303).
The Armatian Icon of the Mother of God.
The Armatian Icon
of the Mother of God was situated in Constantinople at the Armatian
monastery. The place, where the monastery was located, was called
“Armation” or “of the Armatians” and received suchlike a
name from the military magister Armatias, nephew of the tyrant Basiliskos and a
contemporary of the emperor Zenon (474-491). The celebration of the
wonderworking icon was established to commemorate deliverance from the
Iconoclast heresy. The VII OEcumenical Council in the year 787 drew up dogmatic
determinations about icon-veneration based on the foundations of Holy Scripture
and Church Tradition.
Venerable Leucius, abbot of Volokolamsk (1492).
The Monk Levkii of
Volokolamsk was the founder of the Uspenie (Dormition) monastery on the
Ruza River (the monastery was located 32 versts from the city of Volokolamsk
and 2 versts from the village of Seredo-Stratilatsk). The Monk Levkii was a
disciple of the Monk Paphnutii of Borovsk (+ 1 May 1477) and associate of the
Monk Joseph of Volotsk (+ 9 September 1515). The time of the founding of the
monastery by the Monk Levkii might perhaps be determined from the remnants of
the Life of the Monk Daniel of Pereyaslavl’ (+ 7 April 1540). The monk Daniel
upon his arrival at the Borovsk monastery in the year 1466 was entrusted by the
Monk Paphnutii to the Starets (elder) Levkii as an experienced ascetic in the
spiritual life. After 10 years, i.e. in 1476, the starets and his student
settled in the Volokolamsk region, where they dwelt together for another 2
years in founding the monastery. After this the Monk Daniel went to
Pereyaslavl’. It is conjectured that the Monk Levkii was 62 years of age at the
founding of the monastery. Having raised up a monastery, he became known throughout
the surrounding region for his ascetic life. The Monk Levkii died in extreme
old age (according to tradition 17 July) at the end of the XV Century.
He was buried in the monastery founded by him.
In the Iconographic
original of the image of the monk is inscribed under 27 July: “He was
greyed, and a beard like Sergei, his hair uncovered, a schema-habit on his
shoulders, in his hands a staff, and monastic garb”.
The commemoration of
the Monk Levkii is observed both on 14 December and on 17 August on the Day
of the Holy Martyr Leucius.
Venerable Philip, monk of Sukhonsk, Yankovsk (Vologda) (1662).
The Monk Philip of
Sukhonsk was an hermit on Yankovsk hill, on the left bank of the Sukhona
River two versts from the city of Ustiug. The Ustiug inhabitants built up a
monastery at the place of his ascetic deeds, so as to learn monastic life under
his guidance, and in the year 1654 they built a church in honour of the
Znamenie (Sign) Mother of God with a chapel in the name of the then-glorified
Metropolitan of Moscow, Sainted Philip. Brethren soon gathered. The Monk
Philip, refusing no one his guidance, in his humility would not accept the
dignity of hegumen and he died at the monastery as a simple monk on 17 August
Additional Saints and Feasts Celebrated Today
Venerable Pimen, archimandrite of Ugresh (1880)
New Hieromartyr Alexis priest (1918).
New Hieromartyr Demetrius priest (1937).
Blessed Theodoretus, enlightener of the Laps (Solovki) (1571).
Venerable Ellas of Calabria (903).
St. Jeroen, hieromartyr of Noordwijk (857) (Neth.).
New Martyr Demetrius of Samarina in Epirus (1808) (Greek).
New Hieromartyr Archilleus Sirotin.
Hymns, Readings, Feast Day, and Fasting Information provided by Holy Trinity Orthodox Church.
Aggregated and Formatted by OrthoBot OC.
If you benefit from this daily content, please consider Subscribing to my Substack.