New handrails installed.
New bookcases and a display case.
Saints of the Day
Holy Protomartyr and Equal-to-the-Apostles Thecla [II Tim 3:10-15; Matt 25:1-13]. St. Coprius of Palestine. St. Nicander, hermit of Pskov. St. Abramius, abbot of Mirozh (Pskov). Martyrdom of St. Galacteon, monk of Vologda. Saints Stephen (in monasticism Simon), David and Vladislav of Serbia. St. Dorothy of Kashin. Icons of the Most Holy Theotokos of Mirozh and of the Myrtle Tree. Repose of Schema-archimandrite Gabriel of Pskov-Eleazar Monastery (1915).
Quote of the Day
Reasons to Fast
byArchpriest Alexander Lebedeff
God Himself established fasting. In the Old Testament, preparation for a special holy occasion included fasting and prayer. The New Testament often mentions fasting. Our Lord fasted Himself for 40 days before going out to preach. Fasting is clearly not optional inasmuch as Our Lord said, regarding fasting When you fast (Matt. 6:16), rather than If you fast. Our Lord, speaking of His disciples, said that after His departure, they would fast: when the bridegroom shall be taken from them, and then they shall fast.
Our Lord also said that we can overcome the devil only through prayer and fasting. When His disciples reported to Him that they had been unable to cast out a demon, Our Lord explained to them that this kind [the devil and his foul spirits] goeth not out but by prayer and fasting. If we are given but two weapons–prayer and fasting– in our battle against the demonic powers, we should not cast one of these weapons aside and ignore it What soldier who knows only two weapons work against a particular enemy would throw one away?
Apostolic writings also mention fasting. St. Paul’s first Letter to the Corinthians, speaking about marriage, counsels that husbands and wives not deny one another except it be for a time, that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer, and come together again. Clearly, fasting and praying together are a part of Christian marriage, according to the Apostle.
It is amazing to me, that most Protestants ignore fasting although it is documented in the Scriptures. So much for sola scriptura. They neglect fasting, no matter how many times the Scriptures mention it. The Church has established fasting periods that actually total up to about half of the year, averaging about 180 days, when you add them all together. Each of the seasons has its particular fasting period: the winter fast before Christmas; the spring fast of Great Lent; the summer Apostles fast; and the fall Dormition fast. Throughout the rest of the year, two more days a week–Wednesday and friday–are assigned to fasting, with individual special fast days connected with feasts, as well, such as the Eve of Theophany, the Beheading of St. John the Baptist, and the Elevation of the Holy Cross.
Apart from being a spiritual discipline, fasting is also very healthy. Everyone should avoid meat and dairy products two days per week, in order to help keep animal fats and related cholesterol problems under control. Contemporary physicians are making no great discovery, of what the Church has known for thousands of years. The original commandment that God gave to our ancestors Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden was a fasting commandment: eat of the fruit of all the trees but this one. If the fall of mankind and the loss of paradise were the result of breaking a fasting commandment, we should probably not ignore the fasts.
The finished laundry room.
Photo of the Day
We’ve attached the new handrails to the trapeza stairs, and acquired new bookcases, and a display case, for our Way of a Pilgrim Bookstore. We’ve also completed the laundry room.
Scripture Readings for the Day
All for Christ
1 Finally, my brethren, rejoice in the Lord. For me to write the same things to you is not tedious, but for you it is safe.
2 Beware of dogs, beware of evil workers, beware of the mutilation! 3 For we are the circumcision, who worship God in the Spirit, rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh, 4 though I also might have confidence in the flesh. If anyone else thinks he may have confidence in the flesh, I more so: 5 circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of the Hebrews; concerning the law, a Pharisee; 6 concerning zeal, persecuting the church; concerning the righteousness which is in the law, blameless.
7 But what things were gain to me, these I have counted loss for Christ. 8 Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ
17 And this report about Him went throughout all Judea and all the surrounding region.
John the Baptist Sends Messengers to Jesus
18 Then the disciples of John reported to him concerning all these things. 19 And John, calling two of his disciples to him, sent them to Jesus, saying, “Are You the Coming One, or do we look for another?”
20 When the men had come to Him, they said, “John the Baptist has sent us to You, saying, ‘Are You the Coming One, or do we look for another?’” 21 And that very hour He cured many of infirmities, afflictions, and evil spirits; and to many blind He gave sight.
22 Jesus answered and said to them, “Go and tell John the things you have seen and heard: that the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, the poor have the gospel preached to them. 23 And blessed is he who is not offended because of Me.”
24 When the messengers of John had departed, He began to speak to the multitudes concerning John: “What did you go out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken by the wind? 25 But what did you go out to see? A man clothed in soft garments? Indeed those who are gorgeously appareled and live in luxury are in kings’ courts. 26 But what did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I say to you, and more than a prophet. 27 This is he of whom it is written:
‘Behold, I send My messenger before Your face,
Who will prepare Your way before You.’
28 For I say to you, among those born of women there is not a greater prophet than John the Baptist; but he who is least in the kingdom of God is greater than he.”
29 And when all the people heard Him, even the tax collectors justified God, having been baptized with the baptism of John. 30 But the Pharisees and lawyers rejected the will of God for themselves, not having been baptized by him.
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