17th Week after Pentecost.
Wine and oil allowed.
Apodosis of the Nativity of the Theotokos. Hieromartyr Autonomus, bishop, in Italy (313). St. Athanasius, disciple of St. Sergius of Radonezh and first abbot of the Vysotsk Monastery in Serpukhov, and his disciple St. Athanasius (1395).
St. Coronatus, bishop of Nicomedia (Iconium) (249-259). Martyr Julian of Galatia, and 40 martyrs with him (4th c.). St. Bassian of Tiksna (Vologda) (1624-1633). Translation of the relics of Righteous Symeon of Verkhoturye (1704). Martyr Theodore of Alexandria. Hieromartyr Dositheus, metropolitan of Tbilisi, Georgia (1795).
New Martyr Alexis, fool-for-Christ, of Elnat and Zharki, near Kineshma (1937).
Martyrs Macedonius, Tatian, and Theodulus, in Phrygia (4th c.). St. Ailbhe (Elvis) of Emly (527). St. Sacerdos, bishop of Lyons (551). St. Molaise of Devenish (563). St. Eanswythe, abbess, of Folkestone (ca. 640). St. Daniel, monk, of the island of Thasos (ca. 843). St. Andronicus of Atroa (9th c.).
Thoughts for Each Day of the Year
According to the Daily Church Readings from the Word of God
By St. Theophan the Recluse
Saturday. [I Cor. 14:20-25; Matt. 25:1-13]
The parable of the ten virgins is read.
Saint Macarius portrays the meaning of it thus: “The
five wise virgins, in sobriety, hastening toward what was
unusual to their nature, taking the oil in the vessel of
their heart, that is the grace of the Spirit granted from
above, could enter with the Bridegroom into the heavenly
bridal chamber. The other foolish virgins, remaining in
their own nature, did not become sober, did not try while
they were still in the flesh to take in their vessels the
oil of joy, but due to carelessness or self-conceit over
their own righteousness, gave themselves over as if to
sleep. Because of this they were not admitted into the
bridal chamber of the kingdom, and were unable to please
the heavenly Bridegroom. Restrained by earthly bonds and
earthly so-called love, they did not dedicate all of their
love and devotion to the heavenly Bridegroom, and did not
bring oil. While the souls who have sought out the sacred
gift of the Spirit unusual to their nature are attached to
the Lord with all of their love, walk with Him, turn away
from everything, concentrate their prayers and thoughts
toward Him, and are made worthy to receive the oil of
heavenly grace. The souls remaining in their nature creep
with their thoughts along the earth, think about the
earth, and their mind dwells on the earth. They think of
themselves as belonging to the Bridegroom and are adorned
with justifications of the flesh; but not having received
the oil of joy, they have not been reborn through the
Spirit from above (Discourse 4:6).”
Friday. [Eph. 4:17-25; Mark 12:1-12]
In the parable about the vineyard is
depicted the Old Testament Church and God’s care for
it. The New Testament Church succeeded the Old, and so
this parable can be applied to it as well. Since each
Christian is also a living church of God, it can be
applied to him as well. The latter is more needful for us.
What is the vineyard? It is the soul that has received
remission of sins, the grace of rebirth, the gift of the
Holy Spirit as a promise of the heritage of the eternal
kingdom, the word of God, the holy mysteries, a guardian
angel. Who are the husbandmen? Consciousness and freedom.
They receive the gifts and give a commitment to cultivate
them and bear fruit to the Lord. Who are the careless
husbandmen? Those who want to use the advantages of being
a Christian as befits the external order of their lives,
but do not bring worthy spiritual fruits to the Lord. Who
are those sent from the Lord? The conscience and the fear
of God, the word of God, teachers and pastors by whom the
Lord wants to give understanding to the careless. Those
who do not want to change themselves do not heed them;
some drive them away and try to muffle their voice. Others
even start to war against the Lord Himself, when they
reject faith in Him in various forms. In the end, they
will be miserably destroyed (cf. Mt. 21:41).