“The Church is the temple of God, the holy precinct, the house of prayer, the assembling together of the people, the body of Christ, His name, the bride of Christ, calling forth the peoples for repentance and prayer…St. Germanos of Constantinople
The Church is an earthly heaven, in which the heavenly God dwells and moves about.”
Let God arise, and let His enemies be scattered; and let those who hate Him flee from His face. As smoke vanishes, let them vanish; and as wax melts from the presence of fire, so let the demons perish from the presence of those who love God and who sign themselves with the Sign of the Cross and say with gladness: Hail, most precious and life-giving Cross of the Lord, for Thou drivest away the demons by the power of our Lord Jesus Christ Who was crucified on thee, went down to hell and trampled on the power of the devil, and gave us thee, His honorable Cross, for driving away all enemies. O most precious and life-giving Cross of the Lord, help me with our holy Lady, the Virgin Theotokos, and with all the Saints throughout the ages.
This Martyr, who was from Antioch in Syria, contested during the reign of Gallienus, about the year 260. Through the working of the evil one, his friendship with a certain Christian priest named Sapricius was turned to bitter hatred. Nikiphoros, repenting of his enmity, tried both through intermediaries and in person to be reconciled with Sapricius, but to no avail. Later, when the persecution broke out under Valerian and Gallienus, Sapricius was seized as a Christian. When Saint Nikiphoros learned that Sapricius had been arrested by the pagans and was enduring torments for Christ, he sent intermediaries to Sapricius, begging his forgiveness; but Sapricius would not forgive him. Later, as Sapricius was being taken to beheading, Nikiphoros, hoping that Sapricius, at his end, in such a holy hour, would at last forgive him, met him on the way, fell before him, and fervently asked his forgiveness; but Sapricius forgave him not. Wherefore, though Sapricius had passed through many sufferings, and the crown of martyrdom was now awaiting him, because he disdained the chief commandments of love and forgiveness, the grace of God, which had been strengthening him in his torments, departed from him, and he told his executioners he would sacrifice. Nikiphoros immediately confessed Christ before them, and being himself beheaded, took the crown that Sapricius had cast away.GOARCH Website
I have never much considered the importance of the wearing of ones baptism cross, but I recently ran into this quote and found it beneficial to share.(more…)
“When Thou, O Lord, wast baptized in the Jordan, worship of the Trinity wast made manifest; for
the voice of the Father bore witness to Thee, calling Thee His beloved Son. And the Spirit in the
likeness of a dove confirmed the truth of His word. O Christ our God, Who hast appeared and
enlightened the world, glory to Thee.” -Troparion of Theophany
Leyah got the coin in our Vasilopita!(more…)
I’m not really good at maintaining traditions, but I read so often about how beneficial it is to have seasonal traditions and rhythm. We don’t have many abrupt colors in our home. Our furniture and sheets are all light or neutrals, but I found this old set of beautiful garnet red sheets while going through boxes last spring.(more…)
“Herman of Alaska was a Russian Orthodox monk from Valaam Monastery in Russia who traveled with eight other monks in 1793 to bring the Gospel to the native Aleuts and Eskimos in the Aleutian Islands. As part of the Russian colonization of the Americas, Russians had been exploring and trading there since at least 1740. Thus, he marks the first arrival of Orthodox Christian missionaries in North America. He preached the love of Christ to the Aleutians and drew many to the Church through his charitable life, caring for their orphans, building a school, and frequently defending them from the injustices and exploitation of the Russian traders. He was known to them as Apa which means “Grandfather.” He lived most of his life as the sole resident of Spruce Island, a tiny wooded island near Kodiak Island.” (OrthodoxWiki)(more…)
“Let us put on the whole armor of God. Do you see how he banishes all fear? For if it be possible to do all, and to stand, his describing in detail the power of the enemy does not create cowardice and fear, but it shakes off indolence. That ye may be able, he says, to withstand in the evil day. And he further gives them encouragement too from the time; the time, he seems to say, is short; so that you must needs stand; faint not when the slaughter is achieved.(more…)
To the Alexandrians.
I have already heard of the persecution in Alexandria and the rest of Egypt, and, as might be expected, I am deeply affected. I have observed the ingenuity of the devil’s mode of warfare. When he saw that the Church increased under the persecution of enemies and flourished all the more, he changed his plan.