Thursday, September 22, 2011

September 21, 2011 - 15th Week After Pentecost (1st Week of Luke)




Apodosis of the Elevation of the Venerable and Life-Giving Cross
St. Quadratus the Apostle
Kodratos of Magnesia & the 70 Apostles
Jonah the Prophet

Τῇ ΚΑ' τοῦ αὐτοῦ μηνός, Μνήμη τοῦ Ἁγίου Ἀποστόλου Κοδράτου.
Τῇ αὐτῇ ἡμέρᾳ, Μνήμη τοῦ Ἁγίου Προφήτου Ἰωνᾶ.
Τῇ αὐτῇ ἡμέρᾳ, Μνήμη τοῦ Ὁσίου Πατρὸς ἡμῶν Ἰωνᾶ τοῦ Σαββαΐτου.
Τῇ αὐτῇ ἡμέρᾳ, Μνήμη τοῦ Ἁγίου Μάρτυρος Εὐσεβίου.
Τῇ αὐτῇ ἡμέρᾳ, Μνήμη τῶν Ἁγίων Μαρτύρων καὶ αὐταδέλφων Εὐσεβίου, Νεστάβου, καὶ Ζήνωνος.
Τῇ αὐτῇ ἡμέρᾳ Μνήμη τῶν Ἁγίων Πατέρων ἡμῶν καὶ Ἐπισκόπων Κύπρου Μελετίου καὶ Ἰσακίου.
Τῇ αὐτῇ ἡμέρᾳ, Μνήμη τοῦ Ἁγίου Μάρτυρος Πρίσκου.
Τῇ αὐτῇ ἡμέρᾳ Μνήμη τῶν Ἁγίων ς' Μαρτύρων, ὑπασπιστῶν ὄντων Μαξιμιανοῦ.

Rest from labour. A Fast is observed today, whatever day of the week it may be.



READINGS FROM THE BIBLE:

The Reading is from St. Paul's Letter to the Galatians 3:15-22
BRETHREN, to give a human example: no one annuls even a man's will, or adds to it, once it has been ratified. Now the promises were made to Abraham and to his offspring. It does not say, "And to your offsprings," referring to many; but, referring to one, "And to your offspring," which is Christ. This is what I mean: the law, which came four hundred and thirty years afterward, does not annul a covenant previously ratified by God, so as to make the promise void. For if the inheritance is by the law, it is no longer by promise; but God gave it to Abraham by a promise. Why then the law? It was added because of transgressions, till the offspring should come to whom the promise had been made; and it was ordained by angels through an intermediary. Now an intermediary implies more than one; but God is one. Is the law then against the promises of God? Certainly not; for if a law had been given which could make alive, then righteousness would indeed be by the law. But the scripture consigned all things to sin, that what was promised to faith in Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe.

Πρὸς Γαλάτας 3:15-22
Ἀδελφοί, κατὰ ἄνθρωπον λέγω· ὅμως ἀνθρώπου κεκυρωμένην διαθήκην οὐδεὶς ἀθετεῖ ἢ ἐπιδιατάσσεται. Τῷ δὲ Ἀβραὰμ ἐρρήθησαν αἱ ἐπαγγελίαι, καὶ τῷ σπέρματι αὐτοῦ. Οὐ λέγει, Καὶ τοῖς σπέρμασιν, ὡς ἐπὶ πολλῶν, ἀλλʼ ὡς ἐφʼ ἑνός, Καὶ τῷ σπέρματί σου, ὅς ἐστιν χριστός. Τοῦτο δὲ λέγω, διαθήκην προκεκυρωμένην ὑπὸ τοῦ θεοῦ εἰς χριστὸν ὁ μετὰ ἔτη τετρακόσια καὶ τριάκοντα γεγονὼς νόμος οὐκ ἀκυροῖ, εἰς τὸ καταργῆσαι τὴν ἐπαγγελίαν. Εἰ γὰρ ἐκ νόμου ἡ κληρονομία, οὐκέτι ἐξ ἐπαγγελίας· τῷ δὲ Ἀβραὰμ διʼ ἐπαγγελίας κεχάρισται ὁ θεός. Τί οὖν ὁ νόμος; Τῶν παραβάσεων χάριν προσετέθη, ἄχρι οὗ ἔλθῃ τὸ σπέρμα ᾧ ἐπήγγελται, διαταγεὶς διʼ ἀγγέλων ἐν χειρὶ μεσίτου. Ὁ δὲ μεσίτης ἑνὸς οὐκ ἔστιν, ὁ δὲ θεὸς εἷς ἐστιν. Ὁ οὖν νόμος κατὰ τῶν ἐπαγγελιῶν τοῦ θεοῦ; Μὴ γένοιτο. Εἰ γὰρ ἐδόθη νόμος ὁ δυνάμενος ζωοποιῆσαι, ὄντως ἂν ἐκ νόμου ἦν ἡ δικαιοσύνη. Ἀλλὰ συνέκλεισεν ἡ γραφὴ τὰ πάντα ὑπὸ ἁμαρτίαν, ἵνα ἡ ἐπαγγελία ἐκ πίστεως Ἰησοῦ χριστοῦ δοθῇ τοῖς πιστεύουσιν.

The Reading is from Luke 4:1-15
At that time Jesus returned from the Jordan, and was led by the Spirit for forty days in the wilderness, tempted by the devil. And he ate nothing in those days; and when they were ended, he was hungry. The devil said to him, "If you are the Son of God, command the stone to become bread." And Jesus answered him, "It is written, 'Man shall not live by bread alone.'" And the devil took him up, and showed him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time, and said to him, "To you I will give all this authority and their glory; for it has been delivered to me, and I will give it to whom I will. If you, then, will worship me, it shall all be yours." And Jesus answered him, "It is written, 'You shall worship the Lord your God, and him only shall you serve.'"
And he took him to Jerusalem, and set him on the pinnacle of the temple, and said to him, "If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down from here; for it is written, 'He will give his angels charge of you, to guard you,' and 'On their hands they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone.'" And Jesus answered him, "It is said, 'You shall not tempt the Lord your God.'" And when the devil had ended every temptation, he departed from him until an opportune time. And Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit into Galilee, and a report concerning him went out through all the surrounding country. And he taught in their synagogues, being glorified by all.

Κατὰ Λουκᾶν 4.1-15
Τῷ καιρῷ ἐκείνῳ, ὑπέστρεψεν ὁ Ἰησοῦς ἀπὸ τοῦ ᾽Ιορδάνου, καὶ ἤγετο ἐν τῷ Πνεύματι εἰς τὴν ἔρημονἡμέρας τεσσαράκοντα πειραζόμενος ὑπὸ τοῦ διαβόλου, καὶ οὐκ ἔφαγεν οὐδὲν ἐν ταῖς ἡμέραις ἐκείναις· καὶ συντελεσθεισῶν αὐτῶν ὕστερον ἐπείνασε.καὶ εἶπεν αὐτῷ ὁ διάβολος· εἰ υἱὸς εἶ τοῦ Θεοῦ, εἰπὲ τῷ λίθῳ τούτῳ ἵνα γένηται ἄρτος.καὶ ἀπεκρίθη ὁ ᾿Ιησοῦς πρὸς αὐτὸν λέγων· γέγραπται ὅτι οὐκ ἐπ᾿ ἄρτῳ μόνῳ ζήσεται ἄνθρωπος, ἀλλ᾿ ἐπὶ παντὶ ῥήματι ἐκπορευομένῳ διὰ στόματος Θεοῦ.Καὶ ἀναγαγὼν αὐτὸν ὁ διάβολος εἰς ὄρος ὑψηλὸν ἔδειξεν αὐτῷ πάσας τὰς βασιλείας τῆς οἰκουμένης ἐν στιγμῇ χρόνου,καὶ εἶπεν αὐτῷ ὁ διάβολος· σοὶ δώσω τὴν ἐξουσίαν ταύτην ἅπασαν καὶ τὴν δόξαν αὐτῶν, ὅτι ἐμοὶ παραδέδοται, καὶ ᾧ ἐὰν θέλω δίδωμι αὐτήν.σὺ οὖν ἐὰν προσκυνήσῃς ἐνώπιόν μου, ἔσται σου πᾶσα.καὶ ἀποκριθεὶς αὐτῷ εἶπεν ὁ ᾿Ιησοῦς· ὕπαγε ὀπίσω μου, σατανᾶ· γέγραπται γάρ, Κύριον τὸν Θεόν σου προσκυνήσεις καὶ αὐτῷ μόνῳ λατρεύσεις.Καὶ ἤγαγεν αὐτὸν εἰς ῾Ιεροσόλυμα, καὶ ἔστησεν αὐτὸν ἐπὶ τὸ πτερύγιον τοῦ ἱεροῦ καὶ εἶπεν αὐτῷ· εἰ υἱὸς εἶ τοῦ Θεοῦ, βάλε σεαυτὸν ἐντεῦθεν κάτω·γέγραπται γὰρ ὅτι τοῖς ἀγγέλοις αὐτοῦ ἐντελεῖται περὶ σοῦ τοῦ διαφυλάξαι σε, καὶ ὅτι ἐπὶ χειρῶν ἀροῦσί σε, μήποτε προσκόψῃς πρὸς λίθον τὸν πόδα σου. καὶ ἀποκριθεὶς εἶπεν αὐτῷ ὁ ᾿Ιησοῦς ὅτι εἴρηται, οὐκ ἐκπειράσεις Κύριον τὸν Θεόν σου.Καὶ συντελέσας πάντα πειρασμὸν ὁ διάβολος ἀπέστη ἀπ᾿ αὐτοῦ ἄχρι καιροῦ. Καὶ ὑπέστρεψεν ὁ ᾿Ιησοῦς ἐν τῇ δυνάμει τοῦ Πνεύματος εἰς τὴν Γαλιλαίαν· καὶ φήμη ἐξῆλθε καθ᾿ ὅλης τῆς περιχώρου περὶ αὐτοῦ.καὶ αὐτὸς ἐδίδασκεν ἐν ταῖς συναγωγαῖς αὐτῶν δοξαζόμενος ὑπὸ πάντων.



READINGS FROM THE SYNAXARION:

Apodosis of the Elevation of the Venerable and Life-Giving Cross
Saint Helen, the mother of Saint Constantine the Great, when she was already advanced in years, undertook, in her great piety, the hardships of a journey to Jerusalem in search of the cross, about the year 325. A temple to Aphrodite had been raised up by the Emperor Hadrian upon Golgotha, to defile and cover with oblivion the place where the saving Passion had been suffered. The venerable Helen had the statue of Aphrodite destroyed, and the earth removed, revealing the Tomb of our Lord, and three crosses. Of these, it was believed that one must be that of our Lord, the other two of the thieves crucified with Him; but Saint Helen was at a loss which one might be the Wood of our salvation. At the inspiration of Saint Macarius, Archbishop of Jerusalem, a lady of Jerusalem, who was already at the point of death from a certain disease, was brought to touch the crosses, and as soon as she came near to the Cross of our Lord, she was made perfectly whole. Consequently, the precious Cross was lifted on high by Archbishop Macarius of Jerusalem; as he stood on the ambo, and when the people beheld it, they cried out, "Lord have mercy." It should be noted that after its discovery, a portion of the venerable Cross was taken to Constantinople as a blessing. The rest was left in Jerusalem in the magnificent church built by Saint Helen, until the year 614. At that time, the Persians plundered Palestine and took the Cross to their own country (see Jan. 22, Saint Anastasius the Persian). Late, in the year 628, Emperor Heraclius set out on a military campaign, retrieved the Cross, and after bringing it to Constantinople, himself escorted it back to Jerusalem, where he restored it to its place.

The Prophet Jonah, the son of Amathi, of the town of Geth-hopher (IV Kings 14:25), was of the tribe of Zabulon; he prophesied during the years 838-810 before Christ. God commanded him to go to Nineveh, the great city of the Assyrians, and to proclaim that its destruction was nigh at hand because of the sins of its people. But he, as a Prophet who knew the great compassion of God, feared that at his preaching the Ninevites would repent; that God, accepting their repentance in His love for man, would not fulfill Jonah' threats; and that he would be branded a false prophet. So he disobeyed the divine command, and boarded a ship and departed elsewhere. Yet, the sudden and fearful sea-storm and the revelation of Jonah' disbedience caused the sailors to cast him into the sea. A great sea-monster appeared straightway by divine providence, and swallowed him up. For three days and nights he was found in its belly and he prayed, saying the words, "I cried aloud in my affliction
unto the Lord my God..." (Jonah 2:3, the Sixth ode of the Holy Psalter). The sea-monster then vomited him up on dry land and he again heard God's command. Wherefore, he went and preached, saying, "In three days, Nineveh shall be destroyed." The people became terrified and all repented. The great, the small, babes at the breast, and even the irrational beasts themselves fasted, and thus, having found mercy from God, they were spared His wrath. Jonah' book of prophecy is divided into four chapters, and is placed fifth in order among the twelve minor Prophets. His three-day sojourn in the sea-monster's belly is an image of our Saviour's three-day burial and His life-bringing Resurrection (Matt. 12:39-40). His name means "dove."

The Holy Prophet Jonah lived in the VIII Century before the Birth of Christ and was a successor of the Prophet Elisha. The Book of the Prophet Jonah is included in the compilation of the Bible and has prophecies about the judgements on the Israelite nation, the sufferings of the Saviour, the downfall of Jerusalem, and the end of the world. Besides the prophecies, in the Book of Jonah is related, how he was sent to the Ninevites with a preaching of repentance (Jon. 3: 3-10).
Our Lord Jesus Christ, in conversation with the Scribes and the Pharisees demanding a sign from Him, said that no sign would be given, save for the sign of the Prophet Jonah: "As Jonah was in the belly of the whale three days and three nights, so also shalt the Son of Man be in the heart of the earth three days and three nights (Mt. 12: 40). From these words the Lord shows clearly the symbolic meaning of the Book of the Prophet Jonah in relation to the Death on the Cross, the Descent into Hell, and the Resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ. Reproaching the lack of penitence and recalcitrance of the Jews, the Lord said: "The Ninevites shalt rise up to judgement with this generation and wilt condemn it -- wherein that they had repented themselves from the preaching of Jonah; and here, is He greater than Jonah" (Mt. 12: 41).

The Holy Disciple from the Seventy Codratus preached the Word of God at Athens and at Magnezia (eastern peninsula of Thessaly), and was bishop of Athens. He converted many pagans to the true faith in Christ the Saviour. His preaching aroused the hatred of unswayable pagans. One time an angry mob fell upon the disciple to pelt him with stones. Preserved by God, the Disciple Codratus remained alive, and they threw him into prison, where he died from starvation. His holy body was buried in Magnezia.
In the year 126 the Disciple Codratus wrote an Apologia in defence of Christianity. Presented by him to the emperor Adrian (117-138), the Apologia thus affected the persecution of Christians, since the emperor issued a decree, prescribing not to convict anyone without proof. This Apologia was known in the IV Century to the historian Eusebios. At the present time only part of this Apologia is known, quoted by Eusebios: "The deeds of our Saviour were always witnessed, because they were true. The healings by Him and the raisings-up from the dead were visible not only when they were healed and raised up, but always. They lived not only during the existence of the Saviour upon the earth, but they remained alive sufficiently long also after His departure; some indeed have survived to our present time".

Τῇ ΚΑ' τοῦ αὐτοῦ μηνός, Μνήμη τοῦ Ἁγίου Ἀποστόλου Κοδράτου.
Λίθοις νέμειν θέλοντα μηδαμῶς σέβας,
Τὸν Κοδρᾶτον βάλλουσιν ἄφρονες λίθοις.
Εἰκάδι δὲ πρώτῃ Κοδρᾶτος στέφος εὕρατο ἄθλοις.

Τῇ αὐτῇ ἡμέρᾳ, Μνήμη τοῦ Ἁγίου Προφήτου Ἰωνᾶ.
Ἀπὸ προσώπου τοῦ Θεοῦ φεύγεις πάλαι,
Νῦν δὲ πρόσωπον, Ἰωνᾶ τούτου βλέπεις.

Τῇ αὐτῇ ἡμέρᾳ, Μνήμη τοῦ Ὁσίου Πατρὸς ἡμῶν Ἰωνᾶ τοῦ Σαββαΐτου.
Ἀφεὶς Ἰωνᾶς ἀστάτου βίου τόπον,
Ἑστῶτα καὶ βέβαιον εὑρίσκει τόπον.

Τῇ αὐτῇ ἡμέρᾳ, Μνήμη τοῦ Ἁγίου Μάρτυρος Εὐσεβίου.
Εὐσέβιον κτείνουσι δυσσεβεῖς ξίφει,
Τὸν εὐσεβῶς βιοῦντα καὶ Χριστοῦ φίλον.

Τῇ αὐτῇ ἡμέρᾳ, Μνήμη τῶν Ἁγίων Μαρτύρων καὶ αὐταδέλφων Εὐσεβίου, Νεστάβου, καὶ Ζήνωνος.
Εὐσέβιος, Νέσταβος, ἀλλὰ καὶ Ζήνων,
Δι' εὐσεβῆ θνῄσκουσι πίστιν ἐκ ξίφους.

Τῇ αὐτῇ ἡμέρᾳ Μνήμη τῶν Ἁγίων Πατέρων ἡμῶν καὶ Ἐπισκόπων Κύπρου Μελετίου καὶ Ἰσακίου.
Τῇ αὐτῇ ἡμέρᾳ, Μνήμη τοῦ Ἁγίου Μάρτυρος Πρίσκου.
Φέρων ὕδωρ ζῶν Πρίσκος ἐν τῇ καρδίᾳ,
Ἐμπρησμὸν οὐ δέδοικε τὸν τοῦ σαρκίου.

Τῇ αὐτῇ ἡμέρᾳ Μνήμη τῶν Ἁγίων ς' Μαρτύρων, ὑπασπιστῶν ὄντων Μαξιμιανοῦ.
Ὑπὲρ Θεοῦ κλίναντος ἐν ξύλῳ κάραν,
Ἓξ Μάρτυρες κλίνουσι τὴν κάραν ξίφει

Ταῖς αὐτῶν ἁγίαις πρεσβείαις, Χριστὲ ὁ Θεός, ἐλέησον ἡμᾶς. Ἀμήν.

Για τον Προφήτη Ιωνά, του οποίου σήμερα η Εκκλησία γιορτάζει την μνήμη, είναι πολύ χαρακτηριστικά και αξιοπρόσεκτα όσα λέει ο Ιησούς Χριστός στα ιερά Ευαγγέλια. "Γενεά πονηρά και μοιχαλίς σημείον επιζητεί και σημείον ου δοθήσεται αυτή ει μη το σημείον Ιωνά του προφήτου. Ώσπερ γαρ εγένετο Ιωνάς ο προφήτης εν τη κοιλία του κήτους τρεις ημέρας και τρεις νύκτας, ούτως έσται και ο υιός του ανθρώπου εν τη καρδία της γης τρεις ημέρας και τρεις νύκτας". Η ιστορία του Ιωνά, που διαβάζεται στην Εκκλησία το πρωί του Μεγάλου Σαββάτου, είναι προφητικό περιστατικό και προτύπωση της τριημέρου ταφής και αναστάσεως του Κυρίου. Γι' αυτό η Εκκλησία ψάλλει την Μεγάλη Παρασκευή το βράδυ· "Συνεσχέθη, αλλ' ου διηρέθη στέρνοις κητώοις Ιωνάς...". Δηλαδή, μέσα στην κοιλία του κήτους που τον κατάπιε, ο προφήτης Ιωνάς δεν διαλύθηκεν. Έτσι έγινε και με τον Κύριο· έμεινε στον τάφο "ακήρατος".

Ἀπολυτίκιον τῆς ἑορτῆς, Ἦχος α´.
Σῶσον Κύριε τὸν λαόν σου καὶ εὐλόγησον τὴν κληρονομίαν σου, νίκας τοῖς Βασιλεῦσι κατὰ βαρβάρων δωρούμενος καὶ τὸ σὸν φυλάττων διὰ τοῦ Σταυροῦ σου πολίτευμα.

Κοντάκιον ἑορτῆς, Ἦχος δ´. Αὐτόμελον
Ὁ ὑψωθεὶς ἐν τῷ Σταυρῷ ἑκουσίως, τῇ ἐπωνύμῳ σου καινὴ πολιτεία, τοὺς οἰκτιρμούς σου δώρησαι, Χριστὲ ὁ Θεός, Εὔφρανον ἐν τῇ δυνάμει σου, τοὺς πιστοὺς Βασιλεῖς ἡμῶν, νίκας χορηγῶν αὐτοῖς, κατὰ τῶν πολεμίων, τὴν συμμαχίαν ἔχοιεν τὴν σήν, ὅπλον εἰρήνης, ἀήττητον τρόπαιον.

Ὁ Ἅγιος Κοδρᾶτος ὁ Ἀπόστολος «ὁ ἐν Μαγνησίᾳ»
Τὰ θεόπνευστα λόγια τοῦ Ἀποστόλου τοῦ Θεοῦ, Πέτρου, συμβουλεύουν: «Ἕτοιμοι ἀεὶ πρὸς ἀπολογίαν παντὶ τῷ αἰτοῦντι ὑμᾶς λόγον περὶ τῆς ἐν ὑμῖν ἐλπίδος μετὰ πραΰτητος καὶ φόβου», ποὺ σημαίνει, νὰ εἶστε πάντοτε ἕτοιμοι γιὰ νὰ ἀπολογηθεῖτε καὶ νὰ ὑπερασπίσετε τὴν ἀλήθεια τοῦ Εὐαγγελίου στὸν καθένα ποὺ σᾶς ζητᾷ λόγο καὶ ἀπόδειξη γι᾿ αὐτὰ ποὺ ἐλπίζετε νὰ ἀπολαύσετε στὸ μέλλον, καὶ γιὰ τὰ ὁποῖα μας περιγελοῦν oι ἄπιστοι. Νὰ ἀπολογηθεῖτε ὅμως, χωρὶς ἐξάψεις καὶ φανατισμό, ἀλλὰ μὲ πραότητα καὶ μὲ φόβο Θεοῦ. Ἕνας τέτοιος μέγας ἀπολογητὴς ἦταν καὶ ὁ ἀπόστολος Κοδράτος. Ἄνδρας σεμνός, σοφός, πολυμαθέστατος καὶ μὲ ἄριστη διαλεκτικὴ ἱκανότητα. Ἔγινε ἐπίσκοπος Ἀθηνῶν, στὴν πόλη ποὺ ἀνθοῦσαν ἀκόμα oι διάφορες φιλοσοφικὲς σχολὲς καὶ χρειαζόταν ἐπίσκοπός με μεγάλη ἀπολογητικὴ ἱκανότητα. Ὁ Κοδρατος ἔχοντας αὐτὰ τὰ προσόντα, ἐργάστηκε μὲ ζῆλο, προσευχὴ καὶ πραότητα. Ἔτσι κατάφερε νὰ φωτίσει σὲ πολλοὺς τὸ δρόμο τῆς Ἀλήθειας καὶ νὰ φιμώσει τοὺς φιλοσοφοῦντες. Αὐτοί, μὴ μπορώντας νὰ τὸν ἀντιμετωπίσουν μὲ λόγια, τὸν ἔδιωξαν μὲ τὴν βία ἀπὸ τὴν Ἀθήνα. Τὸ φρόνημα, ὅμως, τοῦ Κοδράτου δὲν κάμφθηκε. Πῆγε στὴ Μαγνησία τῆς Μ. Ἀσίας, ὅπου μὲ παρρησία κήρυξε καὶ ἐκεῖ τὸ Εὐαγγέλιο. Ἔγραψε, μάλιστα, καὶ ἀπολογία γιὰ τὸ χριστιανισμὸ στὸν Ἀδριανό. Ἡ ἀπάντηση τοῦ Ἀδριανοῦ ἦταν νὰ τὸν φονεύσει. Ἔτσι ὁ μέγας ἀπολογητὴς πῆρε τὸ στεφάνι τοῦ μαρτυρίου.

Ὁ Προφήτης Ἰωνᾶς
Ἔζησε ἐπὶ τῶν βασιλέων Ἀμασίου καὶ Ἱεροβοάμ. «Ἦταν γιὸς τοῦ Ἄμαθι καὶ εἶχε πατρίδα τὴν Γεχθοφέρ, τῆς φυλῆς Ζαβουλῶν. Ὁ Ἰωνᾶς ἦταν αὐτός, ποὺ μὲ θεία νεύση ἐνθάρρυνε τὸν Ἱεροβοὰμ σὲ πόλεμο κατὰ τοῦ ἄρχοντα τῆς Συρίας, ποὺ κατέληξε σὲ νίκη τοῦ Ἰσραὴλ καὶ ἀποκατάσταση τῶν συνόρων του. Ὁ Ἰωνᾶς φέρεται στὴν Παλαιὰ Διαθήκη, πέμπτος μεταξὺ τῶν μικρῶν λεγόμενων προφητῶν. Βρίσκουμε δὲ γι᾿ αὐτὸν στὸ ὁμώνυμο βιβλίο, ποὺ κυρίως τὸν ἔκανε γνωστὸ λόγω τῆς ἱερῆς δραματικότητός του. Ὁ Κύριος τὸν εἶχε διατάξει νὰ πάει στὴ Νινευή, ἕδρα πλάνης μάταιων καλλωπισμῶν καὶ ὀργίων, γιὰ νὰ κηρύξει σ᾿ αὐτὴ καὶ νὰ προφητέψει τὴν καταστροφή της. Ὁ Ἰωνᾶς ὅμως, ἀποφάσισε νὰ λησμονήσει τὴν διαταγὴ τοῦ Θεοῦ, καὶ ἔκρινε καλὸ νὰ πάει σὲ μία ἄλλη πόλη στοὺς Θαρσεῖς. Ξεκίνησε λοιπὸν τὸ ταξίδι του μὲ πλοῖο, ἀλλὰ στ᾿ ἀνοιχτὰ ἔπιασε μεγάλη τρικυμία. Τότε ἔριξαν κλῆρο, γιὰ νὰ δοῦν ποιὸς εἶναι ὑπεύθυνός τοῦ κακοῦ ποὺ τοὺς βρῆκε. Καὶ ὁ κλῆρος ἔπεσε στὸν Ἰωνᾶ, ποὺ εἶχε παρακούσει τὴν διαταγὴ τοῦ Θεοῦ. Τότε τὸν ἔριξαν στὴ θάλασσα καὶ ἡ τρικυμία σταμάτησε. Ἀλλὰ καὶ τὸν Ἰωνᾶ, τὸν κατάπιε ἕνα μεγάλο κῆτος χωρὶς νὰ τὸν φάει καὶ μετὰ τρεῖς μέρες καὶ νύκτες τὸν ἔβγαλε στὴν ξηρὰ σῶο καὶ ἀβλαβῆ. Τότε ὁ Ἰωνᾶς πῆγε στὴ Νινευή, προφήτεψε ὅ,τι τοῦ εἶπε ὁ Θεὸς καὶ οἱ Νινευίτες μετάνιωσαν, νήστεψαν 40 μέρες καὶ ἔτσι ἡ πόλη τους σώθηκε ἀπ᾿ τὴν καταστροφή. Διότι ἡ μετάνοια φέρει τὴν ἀγαθότητα τοῦ Θεοῦ, πάνω ἀπὸ τὴν δικαιοσύνη Του. Ὁ Ἰωνᾶς πέθανε στὴ γῆ Σαραάρ, κοντὰ στὴ βελανιδιὰ τῆς Δεβόρας καὶ τάφηκε μέσα σὲ σπηλιά. Βέβαια ἄλλα γεγονότα τῆς ζωῆς του μαθαίνουμε στὴν Π.Δ.

Ὁ Ὅσιος Ἰωνᾶς ὁ Σαβαΐτης
Ἦταν Πρεσβύτερος τὸ ἔτος 829 μ.Χ. καὶ πατέρας τῶν Ὁσίων Ὁμολογητῶν Πατέρων Θεοδώρου (27 Δεκεμβρίου) καὶ Θεοφάνους (11 Ὀκτωβρίου) τῶν Γραπτῶν, τῶν ὁποίων τὰ πρόσωπα χαράκωσε ὁ εἰκονομάχος Θεόφιλος. Ὁ Ὅσιος λοιπὸν αὐτὸς Ἰωνᾶς, ἀφοῦ πῆγε στὴ Λαύρα τοῦ Ἁγίου Σάββα καὶ ἔγινε μοναχός, ἀπέκτησε ἄκρα εὐλάβεια πρὸς τὸν Θεὸ καὶ κατόρθωσε ὅλες τὶς χριστιανικὲς ἀρετές. Ἔτσι ἔφτασε σὲ βαθιὰ γεράματα καὶ ἀπεβίωσε εἰρηνικά.

Ὁ Ἅγιος Εὐσέβιος
Ὁ Ἅγιος αὐτὸς παρουσιάστηκε αὐθόρμητα στὸν ἄρχοντα τῆς Φοινίκης καὶ τοῦ ἔκανε δριμύτατη παρατήρηση γιὰ τὶς διώξεις του ἐναντίον τῶν χριστιανῶν. Ἐξοργισμένος ὁ ἄρχοντας, διέταξε νὰ τὸν γδάρουν καὶ νὰ τρίψουν τὶς πληγές του μὲ τρίχινα πανιά, ποὺ ἦταν ἀλειμμένα μὲ ἁλάτι. Ὁ Ἅγιος ὅμως, ἀντὶ νὰ ὑποφέρει, χαιρόταν σὰν νὰ μὴ ἔπασχε ὁ ἴδιος. Στὴν ἀπόγνωσή του ὁ ἄρχοντας τὸν ἀποκεφάλισε καὶ ἔτσι ὁ Εὐσέβιος ἔλαβε τὸ στεφάνι τοῦ μαρτυρίου.

Οἱ Ἅγιοι Εὐσέβιος, Νέσταβος καὶ Ζήνων τὰ ἀδέλφια Νέστωρ καὶ Βούσιρις
Οἱ τρεῖς πρῶτοι ἦταν ἀδέλφια μεταξύ τους καὶ ὅλοι ὑπῆρξαν στὰ χρόνια τοῦ βασιλιᾶ Ἰουλιανοῦ τοῦ Παραβάτη (360-363). Κατάγονταν δὲ ἀπὸ τὴν Γάζα. Ἐπειδὴ ἦταν χριστιανοί, συνελήφθηκαν ἀπὸ τοὺς εἰδωλολάτρες τῆς πόλης καὶ ὑποβλήθηκαν σὲ πολλὲς κακώσεις, συρόμενοι μέσα στοὺς δρόμους. Βασανίστηκαν σκληρὰ καὶ ποικιλοτρόπως. Τελικὰ συνέτριψαν τὰ κεφάλια τους μὲ πέτρες καὶ ἀφοῦ τοὺς ἔβγαλαν ἔξω ἀπὸ τὴν πόλη τοὺς ἔκαψαν μέσα σὲ καμίνι.

Ὁ Ὅσιος Ἰσαάκιος (ἢ Ἄκακιος) ἐπίσκοπος Κύπρου
Ὑπῆρξε ἐπίσκοπος τῆς Ἐκκλησίας τῆς Κύπρου, ἡ ζωή του εἶναι πανομοιότυπη μὲ αὐτὴ τοῦ ὁσίου Μελετίου ἐπισκόπου Κύπρου (20 Δεκεμβρίου). Ὁ Ἰσαάκιος κατανάλωσε τὴν ζωή του στὴ διάδοση τοῦ θείου λόγου καὶ στὴν ἐλεημοσύνη ἀπὸ τὰ ὑπάρχοντά του στοὺς φτωχοὺς καὶ τοὺς δυστυχισμένους. Ἀπεβίωσε εἰρηνικά. (Ἐσφαλμένα γράφεται ὅτι μαρτύρησε διὰ ξίφους).

Ὁ Ἅγιος Πρίσκος
Μαρτύρησε διὰ πυρός. (Ἀλλοῦ λέγεται ὅτι ἀποκεφαλίστηκε. Διίστανται οἱ ἀπόψεις).

Οἱ Ἅγιοι ἕξι Μάρτυρες
Αὐτοὶ ἦταν ὑπασπιστὲς τοῦ βασιλιᾶ Μαξιμιανοῦ (298) καὶ μαρτύρησαν διὰ ξίφους.