Holy Prophet Zachariah and Righteous Elizabeth, parents of St. John the Forerunner (1st c.). Martyrdom of St. Athanasius, abbot, of Brest-Litovsk, by the Latins (1648).
Virgin-martyr Rhais of Alexandria (ca. 308). Martyrs Juventinus and Maximinus, soldiers, at Antioch (361-363). Martyrs Urban, Theodore, Medimnus, and 77 companions, at Nicomedia (370). Hieromartyr Abdas, bishop of Hormidz-Ardashir, and Martyrs Hormizd and Sunin, of Persia (ca. 420). Martyrdom of the Holy Passionbearer Gleb of Russia, in holy baptism David (1015). Martyrs Sarbelus (Thathuil) and his sister Bebaia, of Edessa (98- 138).
New Hieromartyr Alexis (Belkovsky), archbishop of Great Ustiug (1937).
Appearance of Apostle Peter to Emperor Justinian at Athira, near Constantinople (6th c.).
Repose of Priest Hilarion Felea of Romania (1961).
Monday. [Gal. 4:28-5:10; Mark 6:54-7:8]
The Lord rebukes the Pharisees not for
their external routines and rules of conduct, but for
partiality toward them—for limiting themselves to
external worship of God, with no concern for what was in
the heart. It is impossible to be without externals. The
highest internal things require the external as their
expression and garment. In reality, internal things are
never alone, but are always united with the outer; only in
false theories are they separated. But again it is obvious
that externals alone are nothing; their worth comes from
the presence of the internal things contained in them.
Thus, once the internal ceases to be, the external might
as well not be there. Meanwhile, we have a weakness for
outward appearances in which the internal is depicted and
takes definite form, to such an extent that we are
satisfied with fulfilling them alone, without even
thinking that there might be internal things. And since
the internal is harder to attain than the external, it is
quite natural to get stuck on the latter, not striving for
the former. What can we do? We must govern ourselves and
keep the internal things in mind, always pushing ourselves
toward them through the externals, only considering a work
to be real when the internal and external are united in
it. There is no other way. Attentiveness toward oneself,
soberness, and vigilance are the only levers for raising
up our nature which is fat and has a penchant for lowly
things. Notice that those who possess the internal never
abandon the external, though they consider it to be of no