St. Ioannicius the Great, of Bithynia (846). Hieromartyrs Nicander, bishop of Myra, and the priest Hermas (1st c.).
St. Mercurius the Faster, of the Far Caves in Kiev (14th c.). Blessed Simon of Yurievets and Zharki, fool-for-Christ (1584). St. Nicander, founder of Gorodnoezersk Monastery (Novgorod) (1603). St. Luke, bishop of Novgorod (1059). St. Paul, metropolitan of Tobolsk (1768).
St. Sylvia, mother of St. Gregory the Dialogist (6th c.). St. John III Doukas Vataxis the Merciful, emperor of Nicaea (1254). Martyr Porphyrius the Mime, of Caesarea (361).
Repose of Schemamonk Mark of Sarov Monastery (1817).
Friday. [I Thess. 5:9-13, 24-28; Luke 12:2-12]
Be not afraid of them that kill the
body, and after that have no more that they can do. But I
will forewarn you whom ye shall fear: Fear him, which
after he hath killed hath power to cast into hell; yea, I
say unto you, Fear him. The greatest fear we have is
death. But the Lord says that the fear of God should be
above the fear of death. When circumstances come together
in such a way that it is necessary to either lose life or
to act against the suggestions of the fear of God, it is
better to die, and not go against the fear of God; because
if you go against the fear of God, then upon your bodily
death, which is nevertheless inevitable, you will meet
another death which is immeasurably worse than all of the
most terrible bodily deaths. If we always bore this in
mind, the fear of God would not weaken in us, and we would
not do any deeds contrary to the fear of God. Suppose that
passions rise up. At the moment they rise up, the
conscience, motivated by the fear of God, requires one to
defy them; a refusal of the demands of the passions seems
like a parting with life, a killing of the body.
Therefore, when disturbing feelings of this type come back
and begin to shake the conscience, hurry to raise up the
fear of God and of His judgement and its consequences.
Then fear of a most terrible death will chase away the
fear of a very weak death, and it will be easy for you to
stand firm in your duty and conscience. This is how the
wise [Solomon’s] saying is fulfilled: Remember
thy end and thou shalt not sin unto the ages.