Orthodox Calendar 2017
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Old Style
June 24
New Style
July 7
5th Week after Pentecost. Tone 3.
Fast of the Holy Apostles.
Wine and oil allowed.

Совершается всенощное бдениеNativity of St. John the Baptist.

Martyrs Orentius, Pharnacius, Eros, Firmus, Firminus, Cyriacus, and Longinus, near Lazica (4th c.). St. Anthony, founder of Dymsk Monastery (Novgorod) (1224). Righteous Youths John and James, of Meniugi (Novgorod) (1566-1569). St. Michael, great prince of Tver (1318). St. John, monk, of Yaransk (Solovki) (1561). St. Gerasimus (Dobroserdov), bishop of Astrakhan and Enotaeva (1880).

St. Nicetas, bishop of Remesiana (Bela Palanka) (ca. 414). St. John the Hermit, of Bohemia (904). Translation of the relics of Great-martyr John the New to Suceava, Romania (1492). New Martyr Panagiotes of Caesarea, at Constantinople (1765). St. Athanasius of Paros (1813). Synaxis of the Righteous Zachariah and Elizabeth, parents of St. John the Forerunner.


The Nativity of St. John the Forerunner and Baptist of Christ

Six months before his appearing to the most holy Virgin Mary in Nazareth, the great Gabriel, archangel of the Lord, appeared to Zacharias the High Priest in the Temple in Jerusalem. Before he revealed the miraculous conception by a virgin who had not known a man, the archangel revealed the wondrous conceiving by an old and barren woman.

The Nativity of Saint John the Baptist

St. John of Shanghai

Being born exactly half a year before Christ, John the Forerunner by the exact time of his birth depicted his mission of preparing the way for the Lord. He was born at the time of the year (June 24) when the day begins to grow shorter after the summer solstice, whereas the Nativity of Christ occurs (December 25) when the day begins to grow longer after the winter solstice. These facts are an embodiment of the words spoken later, by the Forerunner, after the beginning of Christ's preaching: He must increase, but I must decrease (John 3:30).

Homily on the Feast of the Beheading of St John, the Glorious Prophet, Forerunner and Baptist of the Lord

St. Justin Popovic

What is this? Could it be that this world has become a madhouse? People do not want God, they do not want the greatest Righteous One in the whole world. Whom do you want? Whom would you prefer? Whom would you set in Christ’s stead? With whom would you replace St. John the Baptist? With yourselves?! О moth! О, tiny mortal insects! Yes, when people become maddened by pride, when out of egotistical pride they lose their reason, they have no need of God, they have no need of God’s Truth. They declare themselves to be gods. They present their petty, shallow, false likeness of truth as the great and salvific Truth.

The Untold Story of the Head of St. John the Baptist

Priest Maxim Massalitin

Unfortunately, few of the faithful have recourse to the help of such a lamp of grace as the precious head of St. John the Baptist, “the first among martyrs in grace”.[2] Many Orthodox Christians come to France, but not all of them know how many holy relics there are still on French soil despite the outrages committed against them during the French Revolution and subsequent forgetfulness of France’s Christian past.

Nativity of St John the Forerunner

God has given us the greatest of prophets, to show us how we should prepare ourselves to greet the Lord. Like John, we are to continue to remind ourselves of the prophetic words which awakens our barren soul from the slumber of sin. Like John, we are called to direct our lives toward repentance by which we are drawn into the embrace of the Giver of Life.

The Beheading of the Holy Prophet and Forerunner John the Baptist

Archpriest Andrew Phillips

Our Lord Himself said that St. John was the greatest prophet “among those born of women” (Luke 7, 28). Some hearing these words are surprised. They ask: Surely, Christ Himself is the greatest man born of women? However, Christ was not born of a woman (i.e. a married female), he was born of a Virgin. Therefore, in obedience to our Lords words, that St. John is the greatest born of women, the Church duly honors him.

The Life of St. John the Baptist

St. Sebastian Dabovich

This John was called by God to be the forerunner of his Divine Son, to usher Him into the world, and to prepare mankind by repentance to receive the Redeemer, whom the prophets had foretold at a distance through every age from the beginning of the world, never ceasing to instill in the people of God faith and hope in Him by whom alone they were to be saved.

Homily on the Feast of the Beheading of St. John the Baptist

St. Justin Popovic

Today is a little Great Friday, a second Great Friday. For today the greatest man among those born of women, John, the Holy Forerunner and Baptiser of the Lord, is murdered.

Nativity of the Holy Glorious Prophet, Forerunner and Baptist, John

Holy Fathers in Praise of St. John the Baptist

And as they departed, Jesus began to say unto the multitudes concerning John, What went ye out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken with the wind? But what went ye out for to see? A man clothed in soft raiment; behold, they that wear soft clothing are in kings’ houses. But what went ye out for to see? A prophet? yea, I say unto you, and more than a prophet.

The Beheading of the Holy Glorious Prophet, Forerunner, and Baptist John

The Beheading of the Prophet, Forerunner of the Lord, John the Baptist: The Evangelists Matthew (Mt.14:1-12) and Mark (Mark 6:14-29) provide accounts about the martyric end of John the Baptist in the year 32 after the Birth of Christ.

Commentary of St. John Chrysostom on the Beheading of the Precious Forerunner

St. John Chrysostom

But not without a purpose doth the evangelist signify the time, but to make thee observe also the haughtiness of the tyrant, and his thoughtlessness, in that not at the beginning did he inform himself about Christ, but after a very long time. For such are they that are in places of power, and are encompassed with much pomp, they learn these things late, because they do not make much account of them.

Third Finding of the Honorable Head of the Holy Glorious Prophet, Forerunner and Baptist John

The Third Discovery of the Venerable Head of the Holy Prophet, Forerunner and Baptist John occurred in about the year 850.

Martyr Orentius, one of the seven martyred brothers in Georgia

Martyr Pharnacius, one of the seven martyred brothers in Georgia

Martyr Eros, one of the seven martyred brothers in Georgia

Martyr Firmus, one of the seven martyred brothers in Georgia

Martyr Firminus, one of the seven martyred brothers in Georgia

Martyr Cyriacus, one of the seven martyred brothers in Georgia

Martyr Longinus, one of the seven martyred brothers in Georgia

Venerable Anthony of Dymsk, Novgorod

Once in church he heard the words of Christ: “If anyone would come after Me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow Me” (Mt.16:24), the saint resolved to leave the world and receive monastic tonsure under Saint Barlaam of Khutyn (November 6) at his monastery.

Righteous John the Youth of Meniugi, Novgorod

Righteous James the Youth of Meniugi, Novgorod

St Athanasius Parios

Saint Athanasius Parios, the distinguished theologian and great teacher of the Greek nation, was born in the village of Kostos on the island of Paros around 1721—1722. His father, Apostolos Toulios, was from Siphnos, and his mother was a native of Paros.