Successful membership in a health club requires exercise and commitment
Health clubs make much of their profit from people who decide to join because they want to get in shape, but after a few sessions with the weights, drop out. Membership in the Church, like the health club, requires that we put effort into it, lest we find ourselves dropping out for lack of spiritual growth.
Working out with weights does little for our overall health if we limit our time in the gym to an hour a week. Building muscular fitness takes effort, commitment, and time. Building a healthy relationship with God requires effort, commitment, and time. Like building up a healthy body, the health of the soul requires attention and commitment on our part. The end result is well worth the effort, for our eternal life depends on it.
Love in Christ,
Wednesday November 4, 2020 / October 22, 2020
22nd Week after Pentecost. Tone four.
Fast. Food with Oil
The Kazan Icon of the Most Holy Theotokos, commemorating the deliverance from the Poles in 1612.
Holy Equal-to-the-Apostles Abercius, bishop and wonderworker of Hierapolis (167).
7 Holy Youths (“7 Sleepers”) of Ephesus: Maximilian, Iamblichus, Martinian, Dionysius, Antoninus, Constantine (Hexakustodianos), and John (250).
New Hieromartyrs Seraphim archbishop of Uglich and with him German archimandrite, Vladimir, Alexander, Basil, Alexander priests and Martyrs Herman and Menas (1937).
New Hieromartyrs Nicholas, Nicholas priests and Martyr Gregory (1937).
Uncovering of the relics of Hieromartyr Nikodim, bishop of Belgorod (2012).
Martyrs Alexander the bishop, Heraclius, Anna, Elizabeth, Theodota and Glyceria, at Adrianopolis (2nd-3rd c.).
“Andronikos” and “Jacobshtad” (17th c.) Icons of the Mother of God.
Venerable Lot of Egypt (5th c.).
Venerables Theodore and Paul, abbots, of Rostov (1409).
Venerable James of Luga and Omutch, disciple of Theophilus of Omutch.
St. Mellon, bishop of Rouen.
Martyr Zachariah (Greek).
Venerable Rufus of the Paradise (Greek).
The Scripture Readings
Mary Visits Elizabeth
39 Now Mary arose in those days and went into the hill country with haste, to a city of Judah, 40 and entered the house of Zacharias and greeted Elizabeth. 41 And it happened, when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, that the babe leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. 42 Then she spoke out with a loud voice and said, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! 43 But why is this granted to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? 44 For indeed, as soon as the voice of your greeting sounded in my ears, the babe leaped in my womb for joy. 45 Blessed is she who believed, for there will be a fulfillment of those things which were told her from the Lord.”
The Song of Mary
46 And Mary said:
“My soul magnifies the Lord,
47 And my spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior.
48 For He has regarded the lowly state of His maidservant;
For behold, henceforth all generations will call me blessed.
49 For He who is mighty has done great things for me,
And holy is His name.
56 And Mary remained with her about three months, and returned to her house.
The Humbled and Exalted Christ
5 Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, 6 who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, 7 but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. 8 And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. 9 Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, 10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, 11 and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
Mary and Martha Worship and Serve
38 Now it happened as they went that He entered a certain village; and a certain woman named Martha welcomed Him into her house. 39 And she had a sister called Mary, who also sat at Jesus’ feet and heard His word. 40 But Martha was distracted with much serving, and she approached Him and said, “Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Therefore tell her to help me.”
41 And Jesus answered and said to her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. 42 But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.”
Keeping the Word
27 And it happened, as He spoke these things, that a certain woman from the crowd raised her voice and said to Him, “Blessed is the womb that bore You, and the breasts which nursed You!”
28 But He said, “More than that, blessed are those who hear the word of God and keep it!”