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St. Nikiphoros the Martyr of Antioch & Forgiveness Sunday

St. Nikiphoros the Martyr of Antioch & Forgiveness Sunday

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.

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Blessed Feast of Theophany

Blessed Feast of Theophany

“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

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Put on the Armor of God: Commentary on Ephesians 6

Put on the Armor of God: Commentary on Ephesians 6

“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.

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Death and the Death of Sin

Death and the Death of Sin

Death is not the catharsis of self, “death is the catharsis of sin”. Fr. Josiah Trenham in his message The Art of Dying.

Never before have so many people (particularly in middle-class America) been faced with the idea of death. While I had thought that Christians have a better grip on this ultimate reality, I have been proven oh, so wrong.

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