Sunday, December 16, 2012

December 16, 2012 - 11th Sunday of Luke

FEASTS AND SAINTS CELEBRATED TODAY:

11th Sunday of Luke
The Holy Prophet Aggaeus (Haggai)
Modestos, Archbishop of Jerusalem
Our Righeous Mother Blessed Empress Theophania
Nicholas, Patriarch of Constantinople
Memnonus, Archbishop of Ephesus

Κυριακή: ΙΑ΄ ΛΟΥΚΑ.
Τῶν Ἁγίων Προπατόρων.
Τοῦ Ἁγίου Προφήτου Ἀγγαίου, τοῦ ἐν Ἁγίοις Πατρός ἡμῶν Μοδέστου, Ἀρχιεπισκόπου Ἱεροσολύμων.
Τῆς Ὁσίας Μητρός ἡμῶν Θεοφανοῦς τῆς Βασιλίσσης, Κτητορίσσης τῆς ἐν Χαλκιδικῇ Ἱερᾶς Πατριαρχικῆς καί Σταυροπηγιακῆς Μονῆς τῆς Ἁγίας Ἀναστασίας τῆς Φαρμακολυτρίας (883).
112 Τοῦ ἐν Ἁγίοις Πατρός ἡμῶν Νικολάου, Πατριάρχου Κωνσταντινουπόλεως τοῦ Χρυσοβέργη καί Μέμνωνος, Ἀρχιεπισκόπου Ἐφέσου.

READINGS FROM THE BIBLE:

The Gospel of Luke 24:36-53
At that time, Jesus, having risen from the dead, stood in the midst of his disciples and said to them, "Peace to you." But they were startled and frightened, and supposed that they saw a spirit. And he said to them, "Why are you troubled, and why do questionings rise in your hearts? See my hands and feet, that it is I myself; handle me, and see; for a spirit has not flesh and bones as you see that I have." And when he said this, he showed them his hands and his feet. And while they still disbelieved for joy, and wondered, he said to them, "Have you anything here to eat?" They gave him a piece of broiled fish, and he took it and ate before them.
Then he said to them, "These are my words which I spoke to you, while I was still with you, that everything written about me in the law of Moses and the prophets and the psalms must be fulfilled. Then he opened their minds to understand the scriptures, and said to them, "Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead, and that repentance and forgiveness of sins should be preached in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things. And behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you; but stay in the city, until you are clothed with power from on high."
Then he led them out as far as Bethany, and lifting up his hands, he blessed them. While he blessed them, he parted from them, and was carried up into heaven. And they worshiped him, and they returned to Jerusalem with great joy, and were continually in the temple blessing God.

Κατὰ Λουκᾶν 24.36-53
Τῷ καιρῷ ἐκείνῳ,ὁ ᾿Ιησοῦς ἔστη ἐν μέσῳ αὐτῶν καὶ λέγει αὐτοῖς· εἰρήνη ὑμῖν. πτοηθέντες δὲ καὶ ἔμφοβοι γενόμενοι ἐδόκουν πνεῦμα θεωρεῖν. καὶ εἶπεν αὐτοῖς· τί τεταραγμένοι ἐστέ, καὶ διατί διαλογισμοὶ ἀναβαίνουσιν ἐν ταῖς καρδίαις ὑμῶν; ἴδετε τὰς χεῖράς μου καὶ τοὺς πόδας μου, ὅτι αὐτὸς ἐγώ εἰμι· ψηλαφήσατέ με καὶ ἴδετε, ὅτι πνεῦμα σάρκα καὶ ὀστέα οὐκ ἔχει καθὼς ἐμὲ θεωρεῖτε ἔχοντα. καὶ τοῦτο εἰπὼν ἐπέδειξεν αὐτοῖς τὰς χεῖρας καὶ τοὺς πόδας. ἔτι δὲ ἀπιστούντων αὐτῶν ἀπὸ τῆς χαρᾶς καὶ θαυμαζόντων εἶπεν αὐτοῖς· ἔχετέ τι βρώσιμον ἐνθάδε; οἱ δὲ ἐπέδωκαν αὐτῷ ἰχθύος ὀπτοῦ μέρος καὶ ἀπὸ μελισσίου κηρίου, καὶ λαβὼν ἐνώπιον αὐτῶν ἔφαγεν. εἶπε δὲ αὐτοῖς· οὗτοι οἱ λόγοι οὓς ἐλάλησα πρὸς ὑμᾶς ἔτι ὢν σὺν ὑμῖν, ὅτι δεῖ πληρωθῆναι πάντα τὰ γεγραμμένα ἐν τῷ νόμῳ Μωϋσέως καὶ προφήταις καὶ ψαλμοῖς περὶ ἐμοῦ. τότε διήνοιξεν αὐτῶν τὸν νοῦν τοῦ συνιέναι τὰς γραφάς, καὶ εἶπεν αὐτοῖς ὅτι οὕτω γέγραπται καὶ οὕτως ἔδει παθεῖν τὸν Χριστὸν καὶ ἀναστῆναι ἐκ νεκρῶν τῇ τρίτῃ ἡμέρᾳ, καὶ κηρυχθῆναι ἐπὶ τῷ ὀνόματι αὐτοῦ μετάνοιαν καὶ ἄφεσιν ἁμαρτιῶν εἰς πάντα τὰ ἔθνη, ἀρξάμενον ἀπὸ ῾Ιερουσαλήμ. ὑμεῖς δέ ἐστε μάρτυρες τούτων. καὶ ἰδοὺ ἐγὼ ἀποστέλλω τὴν ἐπαγγελίαν τοῦ πατρός μου ἐφ᾿ ὑμᾶς· ὑμεῖς δὲ καθίσατε ἐν τῇ πόλει ῾Ιερουσαλὴμ ἕως οὗ ἐνδύσησθε δύναμιν ἐξ ὕψους.
᾿Εξήγαγε δὲ αὐτοὺς ἔξω ἕως εἰς Βηθανίαν, καὶ ἐπάρας τὰς χεῖρας αὐτοῦ εὐλόγησεν αὐτούς. καὶ ἐγένετο ἐν τῷ εὐλογεῖν αὐτὸν αὐτοὺς διέστη ἀπ᾿ αὐτῶν καὶ ἀνεφέρετο εἰς τὸν οὐρανόν. καὶ αὐτοὶ προσκυνήσαντες αὐτὸν ὑπέστρεψαν εἰς ῾Ιερουσαλὴμ μετὰ χαρᾶς μεγάλης, καὶ ἦσαν διὰ παντὸς ἐν τῷ ἱερῷ αἰνοῦντες καὶ εὐλογοῦντες τὸν Θεόν. ἀμήν.

St. Paul's Letter to the Colossians 3:4-11
Prokeimenon. Mode 4.
Daniel 3.26,27
Blessed are you, O Lord, the God of our fathers.
Verse: For you are just in all you have done.
BRETHREN, when Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: fornication, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. On account of these the wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience. In these you once walked, when you lived in them. But now put them all away; anger, wrath, malice, slander, and foul talk from your mouth. Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have put off the old nature with its practices and have put on the new nature, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator. Here there cannot be Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave, free man, but Christ is all, and in all.

Πρὸς Κολοσσαεῖς 3:4-11
Προκείμενον. Ἦχος δ.
Δανιήλ 3.26-27
Εὐλογητὸς εἶ, Κύριε, ὁ Θεὸς τῶν Πατέρων ἡμῶν.
Στίχ. Ὅτι δίκαιος εἶ ἐπὶ πᾶσιν, οἷς ἐποίησας ἡμῖν.
Ἀδελφοί, ὅταν ὁ Χριστὸς φανερωθῇ, ἡ ζωὴ ἡμῶν, τότε καὶ ὑμεῖς σὺν αὐτῷ φανερωθήσεσθε ἐν δόξῃ. Νεκρώσατε οὖν τὰ μέλη ὑμῶν τὰ ἐπὶ τῆς γῆς, πορνείαν, ἀκαθαρσίαν, πάθος, ἐπιθυμίαν κακήν, καὶ τὴν πλεονεξίαν, ἥτις ἐστὶν εἰδωλολατρεία, διʼ ἃ ἔρχεται ἡ ὀργὴ τοῦ θεοῦ ἐπὶ τοὺς υἱοὺς τῆς ἀπειθείας· Ἐν οἷς καὶ ὑμεῖς περιεπατήσατέ ποτε, ὅτε ἐζῆτε ἐν αὐτοῖς. Νυνὶ δὲ ἀπόθεσθε καὶ ὑμεῖς τὰ πάντα, ὀργήν, θυμόν, κακίαν, βλασφημίαν, αἰσχρολογίαν ἐκ τοῦ στόματος ὑμῶν· μὴ ψεύδεσθε εἰς ἀλλήλους, ἀπεκδυσάμενοι τὸν παλαιὸν ἄνθρωπον σὺν ταῖς πράξεσιν αὐτοῦ, καὶ ἐνδυσάμενοι τὸν νέον, τὸν ἀνακαινούμενον εἰς ἐπίγνωσιν κατʼ εἰκόνα τοῦ κτίσαντος αὐτόν· ὅπου οὐκ ἔνι Ἕλλην καὶ Ἰουδαῖος, περιτομὴ καὶ ἀκροβυστία, βάρβαρος, Σκύθης, δοῦλος, ἐλεύθερος· ἀλλὰ τὰ πάντα καὶ ἐν πᾶσιν Χριστός.

The Gospel of Luke 14:16-24; Matthew 22:14
The Lord said this parable: "A man once gave a great banquet, and invited many; and at the time of the banquet he sent his servant to say to those who had been invited, 'Come; for all is now ready.' But they all alike began to make excuses. The first said to him, 'I have bought a field, and I go out and see it; I pray you, have me excused.' And another said, 'I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I must go to examine them; I pray you, have me excused.' And another said, 'I have married a wife, and therefore I cannot come.' So the servant came and reported this to his master. Then the householder in anger said to his servant, 'Go out quickly to the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in the poor and maimed and blind and lame.' And the servant said, 'Sir, what you commanded has been done, and there is still room.' And the master said to the servant, 'Go out to the highways and hedges, and compel people to come in, that my house may be filled. For I tell you, none of those men who were invited shall taste my banquet. For many are called, but few are chosen.'"

Κατὰ Λουκᾶν 14.16-24, Matt
Εἶπεν ὁ Κύριος τήν παραβολὴν ταύτην· Ἄνθρωπός τις ἐποίησε δεῖπνον μέγα καὶ ἐκάλεσε πολλούς· καὶ ἀπέστειλε τὸν δοῦλον αὐτοῦ τῇ ὥρᾳ τοῦ δείπνου εἰπεῖν τοῖς κεκλημένοις· ἔρχεσθε, ὅτι ἤδη ἕτοιμά ἐστι πάντα. καὶ ἤρξαντο ἀπὸ μιᾶς παραιτεῖσθαι πάντες. ὁ πρῶτος εἶπεν αὐτῷ· ἀγρὸν ἠγόρασα, καὶ ἔχω ἀνάγκην ἐξελθεῖν καὶ ἰδεῖν αὐτόν· ἐρωτῶ σε, ἔχε με παρῃτημένον. καὶ ἕτερος εἶπε· ζεύγη βοῶν ἠγόρασα πέντε, καὶ πορεύομαι δοκιμάσαι αὐτά· ἐρωτῶ σε, ἔχε με παρῃτημένον. καὶ ἕτερος εἶπε· γυναῖκα ἔγημα, καὶ διὰ τοῦτο οὐ δύναμαι ἐλθεῖν. καὶ παραγενόμενος ὁ δοῦλος ἐκεῖνος ἀπήγγειλε τῷ κυρίῳ αὐτοῦ ταῦτα. τότε ὀργισθεὶς ὁ οἰκοδεσπότης εἶπε τῷ δούλῳ αὐτοῦ· ἔξελθε ταχέως εἰς τὰς πλατείας καὶ ῥύμας τῆς πόλεως, καὶ τοὺς πτωχοὺς καὶ ἀναπήρους καὶ χωλοὺς καὶ τυφλοὺς εἰσάγαγε ὧδε. καὶ εἶπεν ὁ δοῦλος· κύριε, γέγονεν ὡς ἐπέταξας, καὶ ἔτι τόπος ἐστί. καὶ εἶπεν ὁ κύριος πρὸς τὸν δοῦλον· ἔξελθε εἰς τὰς ὁδοὺς καὶ φραγμοὺς καὶ ἀνάγκασον εἰσελθεῖν, ἵνα γεμισθῇ ὁ οἶκος μου. λέγω γὰρ ὑμῖν ὅτι οὐδεὶς τῶν ἀνδρῶν ἐκείνων τῶν κεκλημένων γεύσεταί μου τοῦ δείπνου. Πολλοί γὰρ εἰσιν κλητοί, ὀλίγοι δέ ἐκλεκτοί.

READINGS FROM THE SYNAXARION:

Τῇ ις' τοῦ αὐτοῦ μηνός, Μνήμη τοῦ Ἁγίου καὶ Ἐνδόξου Προφήτου Ἀγγαίου.
Ἀγγαῖος, ἄγγος πλῆρες ὤφθη χαρίτων.
Ὡς ὑλικὸν δέ, τῷ χρόνῳ συνετρίβη.
Ἕκτῃ καὶ δεκάτῃ Ἀγγαῖον γαῖα συνέσχεν.
Τῇ αὐτῇ ἡμέρᾳ , Μνήμη τοῦ Ἁγίου Μάρτυρος Μαρίνου.
Κάραν Μαρῖνος εὐτρεπίζει τῷ ξίφει,
Ἧς ὁ στέφανος εὐπρεπὴς ἐκ Κυρίου.
Τῇ αὐτῇ ἡμέρᾳ , Οἱ Ἅγιοι Πρόβος (ἢ Πρόμος) καὶ Ἱλαρίων πυρὶ τελειοῦνται.
Χλόη τις ἡ φλὸξ ἐστιν, εἰπόντος Πρόβου,
Ἱλάριος, Ναί, φησὶ φίλτατε Πρόβε.
Τῇ αὐτῇ ἡμέρᾳ , Μνήμη τοῦ ἐν Ἁγίοις Πατρὸς ἡμῶν Μοδέστου, Ἀρχιεπισκόπου Ἱεροσολύμων.
Φέρει, Μόδεστε παμμάκαρ, καὶ σὸν τάφον,
Ἡ τὸν τάφον φέρουσα γῆ τοῦ Κυρίου.
Τὰ Ἐγκαίνια τοῦ Ναοῦ τοῦ Ἁγίου Μάρτυρος Χριστοφόρου, πλησίον τοῦ Ἁγίου Πολυεύκτου.
Τῇ αὐτῇ ἡμέρᾳ , Μνήμη τῆς Ἁγίας καὶ θαυματουργοῦ Θεοφανοῦς τῆς Βασιλίσσης, συζύγου γενομένης Λέοντος τοῦ σοφωτάτου Βασιλέως.
Ἐγγὺς Βασιλὶς Θεοφανὼ Κυρίου,
ταῖς ἀρεταῖς ἕστηκεν ἐστιλβωμένη.
Μνήμη τῶν ἐν Ἁγίοις Πατέρων ἡμῶν Νικολάου πατριάρχου Κωνσταντινουπόλεως, καὶ Μέμνονος ἀρχιεπισκόπου Ἐφέσου.
Ταῖς αὐτῶν ἁγίαις πρεσβείαις, ὁ Θεός, ἐλέησον καὶ σῶσον ἡμᾶς. Ἀμήν.




On the Sunday that occurs on or immediately after the eleventh of this month, we commemorate Christ's forefathers according to the flesh, both those that came before the Law, and those that lived after the giving of the Law.
Special commemoration is made of the Patriarch Abraham, to whom the promise was first given, when God said to him, "In thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed" (Gen. 22:18). This promise was given some two thousand years before Christ, when Abraham was seventy-five years of age. God called him and commanded him to forsake his country, parents, and kinsmen, and to depart to the land of the Canaanites. When he arrived there, God told him, "I will give this land to thy seed" (Gen. 12:7); for this cause, that land was called the "Promised Land," which later became the country of the Hebrew people, and which is also called Palestine by the historians. There, after the passage of twenty-four years, Abraham received God's law concerning circumcision. In the one hundredth year of his life, when Sarah was in her ninetieth year, they became the parents of Isaac. Having lived 175 years altogether, he reposed in peace, a venerable elder full of days.

Resurrectional Apolytikion in the Third Tone
Εὐφραινέσθω τὰ οὐράνια, ἀγαλλιάσθω τὰ ἐπίγεια, ὅτι ἐποίησε κράτος, ἐν βραχίονι αὐτοῦ, ὁ Κύριος, ἐπάτησε τῷ θανάτῳ τὸν θάνατον, πρωτότοκος τῶν νεκρῶν ἐγένετο, ἐκ κοιλίας ᾅδου ἐρρύσατο ἡμᾶς, καὶ παρέσχε τῷ κόσμῳ τὸ μέγα ἔλεος.
Let the heavens sing for joy, and let everything on earth be glad. * For with His Arm the Lord has worked power. * He trampled death under foot by means of death; * and He became the firstborn from the dead. * From the maw of Hades He delivered us; * and He granted the world His great mercy.

Apolytikion in the Second Tone
Ἐν πίστει τοὺς Προπάτορας ἐδικαίωσας, τὴν ἐξ Ἐθνῶν δι' αὐτῶν προμνηστευσάμενος Ἐκκλησίαν. Καυχῶνται ἐν δόξῃ οἱ Ἅγιοι, ὄι ἐκ σπέρματος αὐτῶν, ὑπάρχει καρπός εὐκλεής, ἡ ἀσπόρως τεκοῦσά σε. Ταῖς αὐτῶν ἱκεσίαις, Χριστὲ ὁ Θεός, σῶσον τὰς ψυχὰς ἡμῶν.
You justified the forefathers in faith, and through them betrothed yourself, aforetime, to the Church taken from out of the Gentiles. The saints boast in glory. For from their seed, there exists a noble crop, who is she who without seed has given You birth. By their intercessions, O Christ our God, save our souls.

Seasonal Kontakion in the Third Tone
Ἡ Παρθένος σήμερον, τὸν Προαιώνιον Λόγον, ἐν Σπηλαίῳ ἔρχεται, ἀποτεκεῖν ἀπορρήτως. Χόρευε ἡ οἰκουμένη ἀκουτισθεῖσα, δόξασον μετὰ Ἀγγέλων καὶ τῶν Ποιμένων, βουληθέντα ἐποφθῆναι, παιδίον νέον, τὸν πρὸ αἰώνων Θεόν.
On this day the Virgin cometh to the cave to give birth to * God the Word ineffably, * Who was before all the ages. * Dance for joy, O earth, on hearing * the gladsome tidings; * with the Angels and the shepherds now glorify Him * Who is willing to be gazed on * as a young Child Who * before the ages is God.

Resurrectional Kontakion in the Third Tone
Η Παρθένος Εξανέστης σήμερον, από τού τάφου Οικτίρμον, καί ημάς εξήγαγες, εκ τών πυλών τού θανάτου, σήμερον Αδάμ χορεύει, καί χαίρει Εύα, άμα δέ, καί οι Προφήται, σύν Πατριάρχαις, ανυμνούσιν ακαταπαύστως, τό θείον κράτος τής εξουσίας σου.
On this day didst Thou arise out of the grave and didst lead us from the bars and gates of death, Thou Who art great in compassion. On this day, both Adam danceth and Eve rejoiceth; and with them, all of the Patriarchs and the Prophets chant unceasing hymns in praise of the godly power of Thy dominion and might.

The Prophet Aggaeus, whose name means "festive," was born in Babylon at the time of the captivity Of the Jews. He began to prophesy in Jerusalem after their return thereto, and to admonish the people to rebuild the Temple, in the days of Zorobabel, the second year of the reign of Darius Hystaspes, King of Persia, about the year 520 before Christ. His prophecy, divided into two chapters, is ranked tenth among the minor Prophets.

Apolytikion in the Second Tone
As we celebrate the memory of Thy Prophet Aggaeus, O Lord, through him we beseech Thee to save our souls.

Apolytikion in the Fourth Tone
Προφήτης θεόληπτος, οία θεράπων Θεού, τώ κόσμω ενδέδειξαι, ανακαθάρας τόν νούν, Αγγαίε πανεύφημε, όθεν εορταζόντων, ένθα πέφυκεν ήχος, ήρθης ως εορτάζων, εν Θεώ φερωνύμως, ώ πρέσβευε θεηγόρε, σώζεσθαι άπαντας.

Kontakion in the Second Tone
Καταυγασθείς τή ελλάμψει τού Πνεύματος, προφητικώς διαλάμπεις τοίς πέρασι, καί τύποις τρανώσας τά μέλλοντα, περιφανής διά βίου γεγένησαι, Αγγαίε Προφήτα θεόσοφε.
Illumined in mind with streams of light from Heaven's heights, thou brightly didst shine in prophecy throughout the world; and in manifesting types of Christ's dispensation, which was to come, thou becamest illustrious, O Prophet Aggaeus, wise in things divine.

Saint Theophania, who was born in Constantinople, was of royal lineage. Instructed in letters, and adorned with many virtues, she was united in marriage to Emperor Leo the Wise (reigned 886-912). But counting the glory of the earthly kingdom as nought, she spent her nights and days in serving God with psalms and hymns and prayers, working various good deeds until she surrendered her spirit to God in peace, while still in her youth, being, according to some, about twenty years of age, according to others, twenty-seven. Her holy relics are still preserved in the patriarchal church in Constantinople as a source of healing for those that draw nigh with faith and longing. She was also the builder of the Holy Patriarchal and Stavropigeal Monastery of St. Anastasia the Protector from Potions in Chalke (883).

Apolytikion in the Fourth Tone
Προελομένη τά ουράνια πόθω, Θεοφανώ τήν βιοτήν διεξήλθες, αγγελικώς εν γή περιπολεύουσα, όθεν κατηξίωσαι, ουρανίων χαρίτων, σύν Αγγέλων τάξεσι, καί Αγίων χορείαις, παρισταμένη τώ Παμβασιλεί, όν εκδυσώπει, ευρείν ημάς έλεος.
Preferring heavenly things unto the earthly, thou while on earth didst live the life of the Angels, raised up on godly longing, O Theophania. Wherefore, thou hast been vouchsafed Heaven's graces and visions, standing with the Angels' hosts and the Saints' fair assemblies before the King of all, Whom thou didst love; pray Him to grant us His mercy and blessedness.

Kontakion in the Fourth Tone
Τήν εν τώ μέσω ανακτόρων αναλάμψασαν, ως εν ερήμω αγιότητος ταίς λάμψεσι, ως θεόφρονα τιμήσωμεν βασιλίδα. Βασιλείαν γάρ λιπούσα τήν επίγειον, τήν ουράνιον ενθέως εκληρώσατο, χαίροις λέγοντες, Θεοφανώ παμμακάριστε.
As we celebrate today thy radiant feast-day, O divine Theophania, we cry with rev'rence unto thee: Preserve thy servants, who sing thy praise, from every manner of peril and suffering.

Στην Παλαιά Διαθήκη έχομε το ηρωικό παράδειγμα των επτά Μακκαβαίων παίδων και της μητέρας των Σολομονής. Τα παιδιά ένα - ένα θανατώνονταν μπροστά στα μάτια της μητέρας των κι εκείνη, αντί να κλαίη και να δέρνεται τους έδινε θάρρος και τα προέτρεπε στο μαρτύριο. Στην ιστορία των αγίων Μαρτύρων της Εκκλησίας, μέσα σε πολλά παρόμοια, έχομε το παράδειγμα των γονέων του αγίου Μαρίνου, του οποίου σήμερα γιορτάζομε την μνήμη. Ο πατέρας κι η μητέρα του Μάρτυρος, από τους επισήμους της Ρώμης, παρακολουθούσαν το παιδί τους να πορεύεται στον θάνατο και τούδιναν θάρρος και το εμακάριζαν για την τιμή που αξιώθηκε. Σαν υπερβολικό βέβαια και σαν αφύσικο το βλέπομε, και κινδυνεύει να το θεωρήσουμε πως δεν είναι αληθινό. Κι όμως δεν είναι το μόνο, σαν ηρωική εκδήλωση της δυνάμεως της πίστεως των χριστιανών. Η πίστη σηκώνει κι ανεβάζει τον άνθρωπο πάνω από τα μέτρα της φύσεώς του.

Ὁ Προφήτης Ἀγγαῖος
Καταγόταν ἀπὸ τὴν ἱερατικὴ φυλὴ τοῦ Λευῒ καὶ εἶναι ὁ 10ος τῶν μικρῶν λεγόμενων προφητῶν. Γεννήθηκε στὴ Βαβυλῶνα, ὅταν διαρκοῦσε ἡ αἰχμαλωσία τῶν Ἰουδαίων. Ὁ Ἀγγαῖος ἦταν αὐτός, ποὺ μαζὶ μὲ τὸν προφήτη Ζαχαρία ἀναθέρμαναν τὸ ζῆλο τῶν Ἰουδαίων γιὰ τὴν ἀνοικοδόμηση τοῦ Ναοῦ τοῦ Σολομῶντος. Τὸ προφητικὸ βιβλίο τοῦ Ἀγγαίου εἶναι χωρισμένο σὲ δυὸ κεφάλαια καὶ ἔχει ἁπλὸ καὶ αὐστηρὸ ὕφος. Ἐπειδὴ ὁ Ἀγγαῖος καταγόταν ἀπὸ λευιτικὴ οἰκογένεια, ὅταν πέθανε, τάφηκε στὰ μνήματα τῶν Ἱερέων. Νὰ ὅμως καὶ τί συμβουλεύει στοὺς ἱερεῖς: «Οὕτως πάντα τὰ ἔργα τῶν χειρῶν αὐτῶν, καὶ ὃς ἐὰν ἐγγίση ἐκεῖ, μιανθήσεται ἕνεκεν τῶν λημάτων αὐτῶν τῶν ὀρθρινῶν». Ἔτσι, λέει ὁ Ἀγγαῖος, συμβαίνει μὲ ὅλα τὰ ἔργα τῶν χειρῶν αὐτῶν. Ὅποιος ἱερέας δηλαδή, εἶναι μολυσμένος ἀπὸ δωροδοκίες ποὺ πῆρε πρωί-πρωί, ἢ ἀπὸ ἄλλες ἁμαρτίες καὶ παρακοὲς ποὺ διέπραξε, ἂν ἀγγίξει τὸ θυσιαστήριο θὰ τὸ μολύνει. Ἡ προσφορά του δηλαδή, θὰ θεωρηθεῖ μολυσμός.

Ὁ Ἅγιος Μαρίνος
Ἔλαβε τὸ μαρτυρικὸ στεφάνι στὰ τέλη τοῦ 3ου μετὰ Χριστὸν αἰῶνα. Γεννήθηκε καὶ μεγάλωσε στὴ Ῥώμη καὶ πῆρε τὸ ἀξίωμα τοῦ Συγκλητικοῦ. Ἀλλὰ οἱ πολλές του ἀγαθοεργίες πρὸς τοὺς χριστιανοὺς ἐξήγειραν ἐναντίον του τὶς ὑπόνοιες τῶν συναδέλφων του, οἱ ὁποῖοι, ἀφοῦ ἐξέτασαν, ἀνακάλυψαν ὅτι ὁ Μαρίνος ἀνῆκε στὴ χριστιανικὴ Ἐκκλησία. Καὶ τότε τὸν κατήγγειλαν. Συνελήφθη μὲ αὐτοκρατορικὴ διαταγὴ καὶ ἐπειδὴ δὲν θέλησε νὰ θυσιάσει στὰ εἴδωλα, καταδικάστηκε σὲ θάνατο. Ἐνῷ τὸν ὁδηγοῦσαν στὸν τόπο τῆς ἐκτέλεσης, εἶδε μερικοὺς ἀπὸ τοὺς φίλους του νὰ κλαῖνε καὶ αὐτὸς μὲ πραότητα τοὺς εἶπε: «Γιατί κλαῖτε καὶ λυπᾶστε; μάθετε ὅτι πηγαίνω ἀπὸ τὸ σκοτάδι στὸ αἰώνιο φῶς, ἀπὸ τὸ χῶρο τοῦ σταδίου στὰ βραβεῖα, καὶ ἀπὸ τὸ θάνατο στὴν παντοτινὴ ζωή». Μετὰ ἀπὸ λίγο ἡ κεφαλή του ἔπεφτε, ἡ δὲ ψυχή του πετοῦσε στὰ σκηνώματα τῶν δικαίων.

Οἱ Ἅγιοι Πρόμος (ἢ Πρόβος) καὶ Ἱλάριος
Μαρτύρησαν διὰ ξίφους.

Ὁ Ἅγιος Μέμνων Ἀρχιεπίσκοπος Ἐφέσου
Ἀπεβίωσε εἰρηνικά. (Ὁρισμένοι Συναξαριστὲς λανθασμένα τὸν ἀναφέρουν σὰν ἐπίσκοπο Ἱεροσολύμων).

Ὁ Ἅγιος Μόδεστος Ἀρχιεπίσκοπος Ἱεροσολύμων
Ὅσα ἀναφέρονται γιὰ τὸν Ἅγιο αὐτὸ στοὺς περισσότερους Συναξαριστές, ἀνήκουν στὴ σφαῖρα τῆς φαντασίας καὶ μόνο. Τὸν πατέρα του Εὐσέβιο καὶ τὴν μητέρα του Θεοδούλη ἀπὸ τὴν Σεβάστεια τῆς Παλαιστίνης, τοὺς θέλουν ἐπὶ Μαξιμιανοῦ (286-305) νὰ πεθαίνουν στὴ φυλακή, ἐνῷ γνωρίζουμε ὅτι τὰ χρόνια τῆς πατριαρχίας τοῦ Ἁγίου αὐτοῦ ἦταν ἀπὸ τὸ 632 μέχρι τὸ 634. Ὁ Ἅγιος Μόδεστος ἀνακαίνισε τὰ ἱερὰ προσκυνήματα, ποὺ καταστράφηκαν ἀπὸ τοὺς Πέρσες καὶ ζήτησε τὴν συνδρομὴ τῶν χριστιανῶν ἀπὸ τὴν Ἀνατολή. Ὁσιακὰ ἀφοῦ ἔζησε καὶ πολλὰ γιὰ τοὺς Ἁγίους τόπους ἀφοῦ ἔκανε, ἀπεβίωσε εἰρηνικά.

Ὁ Ἅγιος Συμεὼν Ἀρχιεπίσκοπος Ἀντιοχείας
Ἡ μνήμη του ἀναφέρεται στὸν Συναξαριστὴ Delehaye σελ. 361, 53 συνοδευμένη μὲ αὐτὴ τοῦ Ἁγίου Μέμνονος ἐπισκόπου Ἐφέσου.

Μνήμη Ἐγκαινίων Ναοῦ Ἁγίου Χριστοφόρου κοντὰ στὸν Ἅγιο Πολύευκτο

Ἡ Ἁγία βασίλισσα Θεοφανώ, ἡ θαυματουργός, σύζυγος τοῦ βασιλιᾶ Λέοντα τοῦ σοφοῦ
Εὐσεβέστατη καὶ ἐνάρετη βασίλισσα, ποὺ ἐξυμνήθηκε πολὺ ἀπὸ τοὺς χρονογράφους τῆς ἐποχῆς ἐκείνης, γιὰ τὴν εὐαγγελική της ζωή, τὶς ἐλεημοσύνες της καὶ τὴν ἄκρα εὐσέβειά της. Ἦταν κόρη τοῦ Κωνσταντίνου τοῦ Μαρτινακίου, τοῦ Ἰλλουστρίου καὶ τῆς Ἄννας. Γεννήθηκε στὴν Κωνσταντινούπολη καὶ ἀνατράφηκε μὲ ἐπιμέλεια. Σὲ κατάλληλη ἡλικία, ὁ βασιλιὰς Βασίλειος ὁ Μακεδόνας τὴν ἔδωσε γιὰ σύζυγο στὸν γιό του Λέοντα τὸν Σοφὸ (886-912 μ.Χ.), μὲ τὸν ὁποῖο γιὰ 12 χρόνια ζοῦσε μὲ ἀφοσίωση συζυγικὴ καὶ ἀναγνωρίστηκε ἀμέσως ἀπὸ τοὺς συγχρόνους της σὰν ἁγία καὶ θαυματουργὴ γιὰ τὰ πολλὰ ἔργα ἀγάπης ποὺ ἔκανε. Ὁ σύζυγός της ἔκτισε ὡραιότατο ναό, κοντὰ στὸν ναὸ τῶν Ἁγίων Ἀποστόλων, ὅπου ἐναποτέθηκε τὸ τίμιο λείψανό της. Αὐτὸ μετακόμισε ὁ Πατριάρχης Γεννάδιος ὁ Σχολάριος, στὸ ναὸ τῶν Ἁγίων Ἀποστόλων καὶ ἀπὸ ἐκεῖ ἀργότερα μεταφέρθηκε στὸ Πατριαρχεῖο, ὅπου μέχρι σήμερα σῴζεται.

Ὁ Ἅγιος Νικόλαος ὁ Χρυσοβέργης
Ὁ Νικόλαος ὁ Β´, ὁ Χρυσοβέργης (καὶ ὄχι Γραμματικός, ὅπως τὸν ἀναφέρει ὁ Ἅγιος Νικόδημος), διαδέχτηκε στὸν Πατριαρχικὸ θρόνο τὸν παραιτηθέντα Πατριάρχη Ἀντώνιο τὸν Γ´ (984-995). Κόσμησε μὲ τὴν εὐαγγελική του ζωὴ τὸν οἰκουμενικὸ θρόνο μὲ ὁσιακὰ ἔργα καὶ ἀπεβίωσε εἰρηνικά.

Holy Prophet Haggai (~520 BC)
He was born in Babylon, of the priestly tribe of Levi, during the captivity of the Jews. After their return to Jerusalem, the Jews began to rebuild the Temple and to worship there according to the Law, but were discouraged by opposition from the local population (many of them Jews who had not gone into captivity). So God raised up the holy Prophets Haggai and Zechariah (February 8) to stir the people to complete their sacred work. Haggai's prophecies reveal that the drought that the Hebrews were suffering was brought about by their failure to complete the rebuilding of Jerusalem, and would only end when they rededicated themselves to their work. He is ranked tenth among the minor Prophets.

Holy Empress and Wonderworker Theophano (893)
She was born to noble parents in Constantinople. Beautiful and pious, she was chosen by the Emperor Basil (867-886) to be the bride of his son Leo VI the Wise. When Leo ascended the throne, the Empress showed no attraction to the honors and pleasures of the royal life, but devoted her days to prayer and almsgiving. She fulfilled all the duties of her Imperial station while living a life of austerity whenever out of the world's sight. Beneath her rich garments she wore coarse haircloth, and kept fasts and vigils as if she were living the monastic life. She was humble and respectful to all, and would address even her servants as 'Master' or 'Mistress.' At night, after her servants had left her alone, she would leave her fine bed and sleep on a mat on the floor, rising often during the night to pray.
  After her daughter Eudocia died in 892, she wished to leave the world and enter a monastery, but her spiritual father St Euthymius (August 5) would not give his blessing. Nonetheless, her time in the world was not long: only three years later she died, before she had reached the age of thirty. Immediately after her funeral in the Church of the Holy Apostles, her holy relics became the source of many miracles and healings, and are venerated to this day in the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Constantinople.

Menologion 3.0
The Holy Prophet Aggei (Haggai) -- was the 10th of the Twelve Minor Prophets. He was of the Tribe of Levi and he prophesied during the times of the Persian emperor Darius Hystaspis (prior to 500 B.C.). Upon the return of the Jews from the Babylonian Captivity, he persuaded the people to build the Second Jerusalem Temple and he proclaimed, that in this Temple was to "appear the Word Without-Beginning in the finality of times".

The Martyr Marinus suffered in Rome in about the year 283 (other sources suggest the years 217-218). Refusing to offer sacrifice to idols, Saint Marinus was beheaded after cruel tortures.

The Blessed Empress Theophania (Theophano) was the first spouse of the emperor Leo VI the Wise (886-911). She was slandered as having lived together with a man, being with him even after ascending the throne, and she was locked away in prison for three years. Receiving her freedom, she spent her life in prayer and fasting. Her gentleness, charity and heartfelt contrition for sins glorified her name among her contemporaries. Theophania died in either the year 893 or 894.

The Nun Sophia, in the world Solomonia, a great-princess, was the daughter of the boyar-noble Yurii Konstantinovich Saburov. In the year 1505 she was chosen as bride by the heir to the throne, the future great-prince Vasilii Ioannovich. Their marriage was unhappy, because Solomonia remained childless. In order to have an heir, great-prince Vasilii Ioannovich decided to wed a second time (to Elena Glinsky) and on 25 November 1525 he ordered Solomonia to be tonsured a nun. Forcibly monasticised with the name Sophia, Solomonia was sent under guard to the Suzdal' Pokrov-Protection convent, where by ascetic deeds she banished from her heart worldly thoughts, and totally dedicated herself to God. Prince Kurbsky calls the blessed princess "a Nun Martyress". In the manuscripts of the Saints she is termed as "the holy Righteous Princess Sophia the Monastic, for she did dwell at the Pokrov monastery convent, a wonderworker". Under tsar Feodor Ioannovich they esteemed her as a saint. Tsaritsa Irina Feodorovna sent to Suzdal', "to Great-Princess Solomonida, in other regards Sophia, a velvet veil with depiction of the Saviour and other saints". Patriarch Joseph wrote to the Suzdal' archbishop Serapion about the singing over Sophia of panikhidas and moliebens. The Nun Sophia reposed to God in the year 1542. In the descriptions by the Suzdal' sacristan Ananii there occur several instances of miraculous healings at the grave of the Nun Sophia.

THE PROLOGUE FROM ORCHID:

1. The Holy Prophet Haggai
Haggai was born in Babylon during the time of the captivity of Israel. He was of the tribe of Levi and prophesied about 470 years before Christ. As a youth, he visited Jerusalem. He urged Zerubbabel and Joshua the priest to restore the Temple of the Lord in Jerusalem, prophesying for this Temple greater glory than the former Temple of Solomon, The glory of this latter house shall be greater than of the former, saith the Lord of Hosts (Haggai 2:9), for the Lord and Savior was to appear in this new temple. He lived long enough to see one part of the temple built by Zerubbabel. He died in old age and joined his ancestors.

2. Saint Nicholas Chrysoverges, Patriarch of Constantinople
Nicholas governed the Church from 980 until 995. He ordained the great Simeon the New Theologian a presbyter when this spiritual giant was elected abbot of the Monastery of the Holy Martyr Mamas in Constantinople. During his times, a miraculous appearance of the Archangel Gabriel took place at Karyes [Mount Athos]. On this occasion, the archangel taught the monks to praise the Most-holy Theotokos with the hymn "It Is Truly Meet," writing this hymn on a stone in a chapel of one of the kellia, which from that time has been called "It Is Truly Meet" (June 13). As an eminent and great hierarch, he peacefully entered into rest and took up his habitation in the Kingdom of God.

3. Saint Theophano the Empress
Theophano was born of eminent parents, Constantine and Anna, who were kin to several emperors. Her parents were childless for a long time and prayed to the Most-holy Theotokos to give them an offspring. And God gave them this daughter, Theophano. Imbued with the Christian spirit from her childhood, Theophano surpassed all her companions in all the Christian virtues. When she grew up, she entered into marriage with Leo, the son of Emperor Basil the Macedonian. She endured great hardships alongside her husband. Responding to slander-that Leo carried a knife in his boot and planned to kill his father at an opportune time-the gullible father, Basil, locked his son and daughter-in-law in prison. Thus, two innocent souls languished in prison for three years. Once, during the Feast of the Prophet Elias, the emperor summoned all his noblemen to his court for a banquet. Suddenly the emperor's parrot unexpectedly spoke these words, "Alas, alas, my Lord Leo!" and repeated these words a number of times. This brought great anxiety to all of the imperial noblemen, and they all begged the emperor to release his son and daughter-in-law. The grieved emperor did so. After his father's death, Leo became emperor and was called "the Wise." Theophano did not consider her imperial dignity as anything, but, completely devoted to God, she cared only about the salvation of her soul, fasting and praying, distributing many alms, and restoring many monasteries and churches. Neither an untrue word nor an excessive word nor, least of all, slander proceeded from her lips. Before her death she called all her closest friends, took leave of them and gave up her soul to her God in the year 892. The Emperor Leo wanted to build a church over her grave in her name, but since the patriarch objected to this, he built a church to All Saints, saying that if Theophano became a saint, she would be glorified together with the other saints. The Feast of All Saints was then instituted to be celebrated on the Sunday after the Feast of the Holy Trinity.

HYMN OF PRAISE
Saint Theophano the Empress
From a royal throne, it is better seen:
The vanity of the world, clever vanity,
And the imperial throne is mercilessly struck
By the tumultuous waves of this world.
Theophano clearly examines
The insane, open sea of this world,
And her heart, her troubled heart,
Is firmly anchored to the Living God.
The kings of this world-are they kings?
They are but many sentries on a quick rotation!
Death counts and carries out the change of these sentries-
Kings of the world: passing shadows!
Theophano, like the wise virgins,
The lamp of her heart lit by the spirit,
Illumined the path with a wonderful light,
Happily avoiding the pits of sin.
Now blessed in the Eternal Kingdom,
Among the stars, and shining like one,
Where there is no pain or change,
Theophano now reigns.

REFLECTION
The saints exerted great effort to subdue pride and selfishness in themselves and to accustom themselves to complete obedience and devotion, be it to their superiors when they had them, or to God Himself. The Monastery of St. Sava the Sanctified was distinguished by exceptional discipline, order and unmurmuring obedience. When St. John Damascene entered this monastery, not one of the eminent spiritual fathers would venture to take such a famous nobleman and writer as his novice. Then the abbot handed him over to a simple but strict elder. The elder ordered John not to do anything without his knowledge or approval. In the meantime it happened that a monk died who had a brother in this same monastery. The monk was in unspeakable grief over the death of his brother. For the sake of comforting the inconsolable brother, John wrote stichera for the departed monk-famous hymns that the Church uses even today at the funeral service. After composing them, John began to chant the hymns. When the elder heard the chanting, he became enraged and drove John away. Some of the brethren, hearing of John's banishment, dared to go to the elder to beg him to forgive John and receive him back, but the elder remained unwavering. John wept bitterly and lamented because he had transgressed his elder's command. Once again the brethren, on John's behalf, begged the elder to impose a penance on him and after that forgive him. The elder then imposed the following penance upon his disciple: to clean and wash all the lavatories of every cell in the monastery with his own hands if he desired forgiveness. The sorrowful brethren reported this to John, thinking that he would leave the monastery rather than do this. But when John heard the elder's message, he rejoiced greatly and with much joy carried out the elder's command. Upon seeing this, the elder wept, embraced John and said through his tears: "Oh, what a sufferer for Christ have I given birth to! Oh, what a true son of holy obedience this man is!"

CONTEMPLATION
Contemplate the generosity of Abraham (Genesis 13, 14):
1. How Abraham did not want to quarrel with Lot because of the strife between their herdsmen but rather suggested that they separate;
2. How, before parting, he left it to Lot to choose which direction, be it to the left or the right;
3. How Abraham, defeating the King of Sodom, refused the offered goods and would not take even a thread or sandal strap.

HOMILY
on Moses
Now the man Moses was very meek, above all the men which were upon the face of the earth (Numbers 12:3).
A chosen man, a great wonderworker, a type of the Lord Jesus Christ in his miracles, a victor in Egypt, a victor in the wilderness, the leader of a people-how could he not be proud? But if he had become proud, Moses would not have been all that he was. They become proud who think that they do their own works and not God's in this world, and who think that they work by their own power and not by God's power. But the great Moses knew that he was the doer of God's works, and that the power with which He did them was God's power and not his. That is why he did not become proud because of the awesome miracles he performed, or the great victories he obtained, or the wise laws that he gave to the people. The Lord is my strength and my song (Exodus 15:2), said Moses. Of the entire assembly of the Israelites in the wilderness, no one felt his own particular weakness as much as he, the greatest one of that assembly. In every task, in every place and in every moment, he expected help only from God. "What shall I do?" he cried to God, and he ceaselessly listened for God's reply and sought God's power. "Meek above all men on earth." For all the others considered themselves as being something, trusted themselves as being something, but he-nothing. He was completely absorbed in God, completely humbled before God. If the people needed to be fed and given drink, he turned to God; if it was necessary to do battle with his enemies, he raised his hands to heaven; if it was necessary to calm an uprising among the people, he cried to God. The meek, the all-meek Moses! And God rewarded his faithful servant with great glory and made him worthy to appear on Mount Tabor with Elias alongside the Lord Savior.
O Lord, the God of the meek, the Good Shepherd, make us also meek like Moses and the apostles.
 To Thee be glory and praise forever. Amen.