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Daily Devotional

Monday, February 6, 2023 (NS)
January 24, 2023 (OS)


Commemorations

Movable Calendar (Pascalion):

Monday of the Thirty-Fourth Week

Fixed Calendar:

24. The commemoration of our venerable Mother Xene of Rome, and our venerable Mother Xenia of St. Petersburg.


Fasting Information

No Fasting.


Scripture Readings

Movable Calendar (Pascalion):

Monday of the Thirty-Fourth Week

Epistle:

The Reading is from the Second General Epistle of Saint Peter [§ 66]. Beloved:

1 20Know this first, that every prophecy of Scripture cometh not out of private explanation, 21for prophecy was not brought about at any time by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke while borne along by the Holy Spirit.

2 1But false prophets arose among the people, as also there shall be false teachers among you, who shall introduce privily heresies of destruction, even denying the Master Who bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. 2And many shall follow their licentious acts, by reason of whom the way of truth shall be blasphemed. 3And in covetousness, they shall make merchandise of you with feigned words, for whom the judgment of old is not idle, and their destruction slumbereth not. 4For if God spared not angels who sinned, but cast them into Tartarus and delivered them to judgment with cords of darkness which have been kept for them; 5and spared not the ancient world, but preserved Noah, one of eight, a herald of righteousness, after He brought a flood upon a world of ungodly ones; 6and having burned to ashes the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah, He condemned them with destruction, having made them an example to those intending to live impiously; 7and delivered righteous Lot, who was oppressed by the licentious behavior of the lawless 8(for the righteous man, dwelling among them, tortured his righteous soul day after day by seeing and hearing their lawless works)— 9then the Lord knoweth how to deliver the pious out of temptation, and to keep the unjust who are under punishment until a day of judgment.

Gospel:

The Reading is from the Holy Gospel according to Saint Mark [§ 59]. The Lord said to His disciples:

13 9“Be taking heed to yourselves: For they shall deliver you up to councils; and ye shall be beaten in their synagogues; and ye shall be made to stand before governors and kings on account of Me, for a testimony to them. 10“And it is needful for the Gospel first to be proclaimed to all the nations. 11“But whenever they lead you away and deliver you up, cease taking thought before what ye should say, neither be meditating. But whatsoever shall be given to you in that hour, be speaking this; for ye are not the ones who speak, but the Holy Spirit. 12“Now brother shall deliver up brother to death, and a father, a child; and children shall rise up against parents, and shall put them to death. 13“And ye shall be hated by all for My name’s sake. But the one who endureth to the end, the same shall be saved.”

Fixed Calendar:

24. The commemoration of our venerable Mother Xene of Rome, and our venerable Mother Xenia of St. Petersburg.

Epistle:

For St. Xene of Rome:

The Reading is from the Epistle of Saint Paul to the Galatians [§ 213]. Brethren:

5 22The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, kindness, goodness, faith, 23meekness, self-control; against such things there is no law. 24But they who are of the Christ crucified the flesh with the passions and the lusts. 25If we live by the Spirit, let us also be walking by the Spirit. 26Let us not become vainglorious, provoking one another, envying one another.

6 1Brethren, even if a man should be overtaken in some transgression, ye, the spiritual ones, be restoring such a one in the spirit of meekness, looking out for thyself, lest thou also be tempted. 2Keep on bearing one another’s burdens, and thus fill up the law of the Christ.

For St. Xenia of St. Petersburg:

The Reading is from the Epistle of Saint Paul to the Galatians [§ 208]. Brethren:

3 23Before faith came, we were being guarded under the law, having been closed up to the faith about to be revealed. 24Therefore the law hath become our tutor until Christ, in order that we might be justified by faith. 25But faith having come, we are no longer under a tutor. 26For all are sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. 27For as many as were baptized into Christ, ye put on Christ. 28There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male and female; for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. 29And if ye are Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to promise.

Gospel:

The Reading is from the Holy Gospel according to Saint Matthew [§ 104]. The Lord said this parable:

25 1“The kingdom of the heavens shall be likened to ten virgins, who took their lamps and went forth to meet the bridegroom. 2“And five of them were prudent, and five were foolish. 3“Those who were foolish took lamps for themselves and took no oil with them; 4“but the prudent took oil in their vessels with their lamps. 5“But while the bridegroom tarried, they all dozed and went on sleeping. 6“But in the middle of the night, there came to pass a cry, ‘Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him!’ 7“Then all those virgins were wakened and trimmed their lamps. 8“And the foolish said to the prudent, ‘Give us of your oil, for our lamps are going out.’ 9“But the prudent answered, saying, ‘Peradventure there might not be enough for us and you, but go rather to those who sell, and buy for yourselves.’ 10“But while they went away to buy, the bridegroom came, and they who were ready went in with him to the wedding festivities; and the door was shut. 11“And afterwards the remaining virgins came also, saying, ‘Lord, lord, open to us.’ 12“But he answered and said, ‘Verily I say to you, I know ye not.’ 13“Be watching then, for ye know not the day nor the hour in which the Son of Man cometh.”


Lives of the Saints
(Prologue)

February 6th — Civil Calendar
January 24th — Church Calendar

1. Our Holy Mother Xenia.

Born in Rome, she was the only daughter of a famous senator. Drawn by the love of Christ, she refused to marry as her parents desired. In order to escape this, she fled from her home with two of her slaves and came to the island of Kos, to a place called Mylassa, where she started a community for virgins, remaining there in asceticism till her death. Though she was a woman, she had a man’s perseverance in fasting, prayer and vigils. She often spent entire nights standing in prayer, was dressed more poorly than her sisters, and when she ate she often put ashes from the censer on her bread. At the hour of her death in 450, a wonderful sign appeared over the monastery: a wreath of stars encircling a cross more resplendent than the sun. Many of the sick were healed by her relics. Her two slave girls followed the example of their abbess in all things, and when they died, they were buried, by their wish, at the feet of blessed Xenia.

2. The Holy Martyr Babylas.

He was a Sicilian priest who suffered for Christ with two of his disciples in the third century.

3. Our Holy Father Macedonius.

He was a Syrian hermit. Only in old age did he feed himself with baked bread. Before that, he ate only barley grain soaked in water. He finished his earthly course in the year 418.

4. Our Holy Father Philo, Bishop of Cyprus.

When St Epiphanius was called to Rome to support his sister, the Empress Honoria, by his prayers he chose St Philo to be bishop. St Philo wrote a commentary on the Pentateuch and the Song of Songs. He entered peacefully into rest in the fifth century.

5. Our Holy Father Dionysius of Olympus, the Wonderworker.

He lived the ascetic life on Olympus. He received the monastic tonsure on the Holy Mountain, where he later became abbot of Philotheou. Before the end of his life, he withdrew again to the solitude of Olympus, where he entered into rest in the 16th century.

FOR CONSIDERATION

In our day, we often hear parents say that they want to insure the lives of their children. To this end they make such great efforts, amass riches (often illicit riches), educate their children for that vocation which brings the surest physical security and material help. And so-called Christians do the same. They do this because their concept of real life and real security of life is faulty. But this is how a true Christian prepares his son for real life: At her death, blessed Euphrosyne said to her son, Clement of Ancyra: ‘Do me honor, my son, and stand for Christ as a man, and confess Him with strength and steadfastness. I hope, dear heart, that the crown of martyrdom will soon flower upon you, to the salvation of many... Fear neither threats nor the sword, nor wounds nor fire. Nothing can separate you from Christ. But look into the heavens and await thence the great and eternal and rich reward of God. Fear God’s majesty, fear His judgment, tremble before His all-seeing Eye, for those who deny Him will suffer the unquenched fire and the ever vigilant worm. May this be my reward from you, my sweet son, for the pain of giving you birth and for the care of your upbringing that I may be known as the mother of a martyr. The blood that you received from me do not spare, but shed that it too may give me honor. Give your body to martyrdom, that I may rejoice at that before the Lord, as though I myself alone suffered for Him.’


Daily Scripture Readings taken from The Orthodox New Testament, translated and published by Holy Apostles Convent, Buena Vista, Colorado, copyright © 2000, used with permission, all rights reserved.

Daily Prologue Readings taken from The Prologue of Ochrid, by Bishop Nikolai Velimirovic, translated by Mother Maria, published by Lazarica Press, Birmingham, England, copyright © 1985, all rights reserved.


Archbishop Gregory
Dormition Skete
P.O. Box 3177
Buena Vista, CO 81211-3177
USA
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