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Saints Days
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Lexilogio
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 04, 2011 7:28 pm    Post subject:  Reply with quote

cyberman wrote:
7th Century I think Lex


 Your right!
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Lexilogio
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 07, 2011 7:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Today is the day Catholics celebrate Saint Jean-Baptiste de La Salle, or John Baptist de La Salle (1651 - 1719). He was a priest, educational reformer and founder of the Institute of the Brothers of Christian Schools.

He is the Patron Saint of teachers.

He dedicated much of his life to the education of poor children in France.
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Lexilogio
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 13, 2011 11:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Today Catholics celebrate the life of Pope Martin 1 (Pope from 649 to 653)

Pope Martin was the only Pope in Byzantine times whose appointment did not come from Constantinople, and his time as Pope is worth reading about.

He summoned the Lateran Council to deal with the Monothelites, people who considered that Jesus had one will, but two natures (as opposed to the hierarchical doctrine that Jesus had two natures and two wills).

The Council went against the direct orders of the Emperor Constans II, who had, the previous year, issued an order forbidding any discussion on the subject of Jesus and whether he had two wills. In convening the Lateran Council, Pope Martin was the first to challenge the Roman Emperor.

In retaliation, Constans II ordered the arrest of Pope Martin, along with Maximus the Confessor. They were taken first to Naxos, and then Constantinople. He was then banished to Chersonesos Taurica (in Ukraine), and died on September 16th 653.
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 13, 2011 11:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I must say Lexi, the only saint I can ever summon any enthusiasm for is Saint Patrick - always a good excuse for a bit of good music and plenty of the black-stuff  
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 13, 2011 9:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Heretic wrote:
I must say Lexi, the only saint I can ever summon any enthusiasm for is Saint Patrick - always a good excuse for a bit of good music and plenty of the black-stuff  




Part of the reason I'm doing this is because I know so little about the saints. All these people who lived "good" lives, and we have barely heard about them. We only ever seem to hear about the nasty ones...
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 09, 2014 1:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sts Raphael, Nicholas and Irene, New-Martyrs of Lesvos



Sts Raphael, Nicholas and Irene suffered martyrdom by the Turks on the island of Lesvos (also called Mytilene) on April 9 1463 AD, ten years after the fall of Constantinople. St Raphael was the Abbot of Karyes near the village of Thermi on the island. St Nicholas was a Deacon at the monastery, and St Irene was the 12-year-old daughter of the major of Thermi. The three saints were at the monastery with the village teacher and St Irene’s father when the Turks raided it.

For centuries the people of Lesvos would go on Bright Tuesday to the ruins of a monastery near Thermi, a village northwest of the capital, Mytilene. As time passed, however, no one could remember the reason for the annual pilgrimage. There was a vague recollection that once there had been a monastery on that spot, and that the monks had been killed by the Turks.

The saints remained unknown for about 500 years after their martyrdoms during the Turkish occupation of Lesvos. In 1959 the three saints appeared to the people on Lesvos in dreams and visions. They guided excavations of their own graves, called people to repentance, and cured many kinds of diseases.

The saints revealed how they were cruelly tortured at the monastery, calling it a "second Golgotha" (in the words of St Raphael). St Raphael’s torture ended when his head was sawn off. St Nicholas died of heart failure when he was being tortured. St Irene was tortured in front of her father and burnt alive in a clay cask, where her charred bones were later found. The teacher’s head was cut off and placed between his legs when he was buried. A great deal of blood was shed at the monastery; the saints were martyred for the sake of their Christian faith.
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 10, 2014 6:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Martyrs of the Kvabtakhevi Monastery



In the 14th century, during the reign of King Bagrat V (1360-1394), Timur (Tamerlane) invaded Georgia seven times. His troops inflicted irreparable damage on the country, seizing centuries-old treasures and razing ancient churches and monasteries.

Timur’s armies ravaged Kartli, then took the king, queen, and the entire royal court captive and sent them to Karabakh (in present-day Azerbaijan). Later Timur attempted to entice King Bagrat to renounce the Christian Faith in exchange for permission to return to the throne and for the release of the other Georgian prisoners.

For some time Timur was unable to subjugate King Bagrat, but in the end, being powerless and isolated from his kinsmen, the king began to falter. He devised a sly scheme: to confess Islam before the enemy, but to remain a Christian at heart. Satisfied with King Bagrat’s decision to “convert to Islam,” Timur permitted the king to return to the throne of Kartli. At the request of King Bagrat, Timur sent twelve thousand troops with him to complete Georgia’s forcible conversion to Islam.

When they were approaching the village of Khunani in southeastern Georgia, Bagrat secretly informed his son Giorgi of everything that had happened and called upon him and his army to massacre the invaders.

The news of Bagrat’s betrayal and the ruin of his army infuriated Timur, and he called for immediate revenge. At their leader’s command, his followers destroyed everything in their path, set fire to cities and villages, devastated churches, and thus forced their way through to Kvabtakhevi Monastery.

Monastics and laymen alike were gathered in Kvabtakhevi when the enemy came thundering in. Having forced open the gate, the attackers burst into the monastery, then plundered and seized all its treasures. They captured the young and strong, carrying them away.

The old, the infirm, and the nuns were put to the sword. As the greatest humiliation, they mocked the clergy and monastics by strapping them with sleigh bells and jumping and dancing around them.

Already drunk on the blood they had shed, the barbarians posed an ultimatum to those who remained: to renounce Christ and live or to be driven into the church and burned alive.

Faced with these terms, the faithful cried out: “Go ahead and burn our flesh—in the Heavenly Kingdom our souls will burn with a divine flame more radiant than the sun!” And in their exceeding humility, the martyrs requested that their martyrdom not be put on display: “We ask only that you not commit this sin before the eyes of men and angels. The Lord alone knows the sincerity of our will and comforts us in our righteous afflictions!”

Having been driven like beasts into the church, the martyrs raised up a final prayer to God: “In the multitude of Thy mercy shall I go into Thy house; I shall worship toward Thy holy temple in fear of Thee. O Lord, guide me in the way of Thy righteousness; because of mine enemies, make straight my way before Thee (Ps. 5:6-7) that with a pure mind I may glorify Thee forever....”

The executioners hauled in more and more wood, until the flames enveloping the church blazed as high as the heavens and the echo of crackling timber resounded through the mountains. Ensnared in a ring of fire, the blissful martyrs chanted psalms as they gave up their spirits to the Lord.

The massacre at Kvabtakhevi took place in 1386. The imprints of the martyrs’ charred bodies remain on the floor of the church to this day.
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 12, 2014 3:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Raising of Lazarus (Saturday before Holy Week)



Visible triumphs are few in the earthly life of our Lord Jesus Christ. He preached a kingdom “not of this world.” At His nativity in the flesh there was “no room at the inn.” For nearly thirty years, while He grew “in wisdom and in stature, and in favor with God and man” (Luke 2:52), He lived in obscurity as “the son of Mary.” When He appeared from Nazareth to begin His public ministry, one of the first to hear of Him asked: “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” (John I :46). In the end He was crucified between two thieves and laid to rest in the tomb of another man.

Two brief days stand out as sharp exceptions to the above—days of clearly observable triumph. These days are known in the Church today as Lazarus Saturday and Palm Sunday. Together they form a unified liturgical cycle which serves as the passage from the forty days of Great Lent to Holy Week. They are the unique and paradoxical days before the Lord’s Passion. They are days of visible, earthly triumph, of resurrectional and messianic joy in which Christ Himself is a deliberate and active participant. At the same time they are days which point beyond themselves to an ultimate victory and final kingship which Christ will attain not by raising one dead man or entering a particular city, but by His own imminent suffering, death and resurrection.

      By raising Lazarus from the dead before Thy Passion,
      Thou didst confirm the universal resurrection, 0 Christ God!
      Like the children with the palms of victory,
      we cry out to Thee, 0 Vanquisher of Death:
      Hosanna in the highest!
      Blessed is He that comes in the name of the Lord!

      (Troparion of the Feast)


In a carefully detailed narrative the Gospel relates how Christ, six days before His own death, and with particular mindfulness of the people “standing by, that they may believe that thou didst send me” (John I I :42), went to His dead friend Lazarus at Bethany outside of Jerusalem. He was aware of the approaching death of Lazarus but deliberately delayed His coming, saying to His disciples at the news of His friend’s death: “For your sake I am glad that I was not there, so that you may believe” (John 11:14).

When Jesus arrived at Bethany, Lazarus was already dead four days. This fact is repeatedly emphasized by the Gospel narrative and the liturgical hymns of the feast. The four-day burial underscores the horrible reality of death. Man, created by God in His own image and likeness, is a spiritual-material being, a unity of soul and body. Death is destruction; it is the separation of soul and body. The soul without the body is a ghost, as one Orthodox theologian puts it, and the body without the soul is a decaying corpse. “I weep and I wail, when I think upon death, and behold our beauty, fashioned after the image of God, lying in the tomb dishonored, disfigured, bereft of form.” This is a hymn of St John of Damascus sung at the Church’s burial services. This “mystery” of death is the inevitable fate of man fallen from God and blinded by his own prideful pursuits.

With epic simplicity the Gospel records that, on coming to the scene of the horrible end of His friend, “Jesus wept” (John 11:35). At this moment Lazarus, the friend of Christ, stands for all men, and Bethany is the mystical center of the world. Jesus wept as He saw the “very good” creation and its king, man, “made through Him” (John 1:3) to be filled with joy, life and light, now a burial ground in which man is sealed up in a tomb outside the city, removed from the fullness of life for which he was created, and decomposing in darkness, despair and death. Again as the Gospel says, the people were hesitant to open the tomb, for “by this time there will be an odor, for he has been dead four days” (John 11:39).

When the stone was removed from the tomb, Jesus prayed to His Father and then cried with a loud voice: “Lazarus, come out.” The icon of the feast shows the particular moment when Lazarus appears at the entrance to the tomb. He is still wrapped in his grave clothes and his friends, who are holding their noses because of the stench of his decaying body, must unwrap him. In everything stress is laid on the audible, the visible and the tangible. Christ presents the world with this observable fact: on the eve of His own suffering and death He raises a man dead four days! The people were astonished. Many immediately believed on Jesus and a great crowd began to assemble around Him as the news of the raising of Lazarus spread. The regal entry into Jerusalem followed.

Lazarus Saturday is a unique day: on a Saturday a Matins and Divine Liturgy bearing the basic marks of festal, resurrectional services, normally proper to Sundays, are celebrated. Even the baptismal hymn is sung at the Liturgy instead of Holy God: “As many as have been baptized into Christ, have put on Christ.”

Very Rev. Paul Lazor
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 14, 2014 4:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Martyr Ardalion the Actor

The Holy Martyr Ardalion suffered for Christ under the emperor Maximian Galerius (305-311). St Ardalion was a talented actor.
The Holy Martyr Ardalion accepted death for Christ under the emperor Maximian Galerius (305-311). Saint Ardalion was a talented mimic actor. For the merriment of the crowd, his favourite role was a burlesque of martyrs for the Faith that mocked the Christians in every possible way.

One time, in role as a Christian, Ardalion was to at first refuse to offer sacrifice to idols, but later to consent to renounce Christ. Along the course of the action they suspended him upon a wooden torture device and pretended to tear at him with iron hooks. He so naturally depicted the suffering, that the spectators were delighted and loudly declared their praise of his artistry.

Suddenly the saint ordered all to be quiet and declared, that he actually was a Christian and did not renounce the Lord. The governor of the city tried to explain that Saint Ardalion was continuing to play the role, and at the end of the show he would renounce Christ and offer sacrifice to the gods. But Saint Ardalion continued to confess his faith in Christ even after the play. The governor gave orders to throw the actor onto a red-hot iron-pan where he played the role of martyr in truth and with honour gained the crown of victory.
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 16, 2014 1:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Virgin-Martyrs Agape, Irene and Chione in Thessalonica



The Holy Martyrs Agape, Irene, and Chione were sisters who lived at the end of the third century to the beginning of the fourth century, near the Italian city of Aquilea. They were left orphaned at an early age.

The young women led a pious Christian life and they turned down many offers of marriage. Their spiritual guide was the priest Xeno. It was revealed to him in a vision that he would die very soon, and that the holy virgins would suffer martyrdom. Soon what was predicted in the vision came to pass. The priest Zeno died, and the three virgins were arrested and brought to trial before the emperor Diocletian (284-305).

St Chione (“snow” in Greek) preserved the purity of her baptism according to the words of the Prophet-King David, “You will wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow” (Ps. 50/51:7).

St Irene (“peace” in Greek) preserved the peace of Christ within herself and manifested it to others, according to the Savior’s word, “My peace I give you” (John 14:27).

St Agape (“love” in Greek) loved God with all her heart, and her neighbor as herself (Mt.22:37-39).

Seeing the youthful beauty of the sisters, the emperor urged them to deny Christ and he promised to find them illustrious bridegrooms from his entourage. The holy sisters replied that their only Bridegroom was Christ, for Whom they were ready to suffer. The emperor demanded they renounce Christ, but neither the elder sisters, nor the youngest, would consent. They called the pagan gods mere idols made by human hands, and they preached faith in the true God.

By order of Diocletian the holy virgins were eventually given over to Sisinius for trial. He began with the youngest sister, Irene. Seeing that she remained unyielding, he sent her to prison and then attempted to sway Sts Chione and Agape. He also failed to make them renounce Christ, and Sisinius ordered that Sts Agape and Chione be burned. On hearing the sentence, the sisters gave thanks to the Lord for their crowns of martyrdom. In the fire, Agape and Chione surrendered their pure souls to the Lord.

When the fire went out, everyone saw that the bodies of the holy martyrs and their clothing had not been scorched by the fire, and their faces were beautiful and peaceful, as if they were asleep. On the day following, Sisinius gave orders to bring St Irene to court. He threatened her with the fate of her older sisters and he urged her to renounce Christ. Then he threatened to hand her over for defilement in a brothel. But the holy martyr answered, “Even if my body is defiled by force, my soul will never be defiled by renouncing Christ.”

When the soldiers of Sisinius led St Irene to the brothel, two luminous soldiers overtook them and said, “Your master Sisinius commands you to take this virgin to a high mountain and leave her there, and then return to him and report to him that you have fulfilled his command.” And the soldiers did so.

When they reported back to Sisinius, he flew into a rage, since he had given no such orders. The luminous soldiers were angels of God, saving the holy martyr from defilement. Sisinius went to the mountain with a detachment of soldiers and saw St Irene on the summit. For a long while they searched for the way to the top, but they could not find it. Then one of the soldiers wounded St Irene with an arrow. The martyr cried out to Sisinius, “I mock your impotent malice, and I go my Lord Jesus Christ pure and undefiled.” Having given thanks to the Lord, she lay down upon the ground and surrendered her soul to God on Easter Sunday, 304 A.D.


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