The Universal Exaltation of the Precious and Life-giving Cross.
Repose of St. John Chrysostom, archbishop of Constantinople (407).
Uncovering of the relics (2000) of Sts. Alexandra (1789), Martha (1829), and Helen (1832), of Diveyevo.
Lesna Icon of the Most Holy Theotokos (1683).
Martyr Papas of Lycaonia (305). St. Placilla the Empress, wife of St. Theodosius the Great (400). St. Maria of Tarsus (607). New Martyr Macarius of Thessalonica (Mt. Athos), disciple of St. Niphon, patriarch of Constantinople (1527). Holy Fathers of the Sixth Ecumenical Council (680-681).
Repose of Bishop Arsenius (Zhadanovsky) of Serpukhov, Archpriest Sergius Siderov of Kiev, and Priest Michael Shik of Moscow (1937).
[Eph. 5:20-26; Luke 3:23-4:1]
The honourable cross is brought out for
veneration in the middle of Great Lent in order to inspire
those who toil in fasting to patiently bear the yoke they
have taken to the end. Why is this done in September? Is
it accidental? But there are no accidents for the
Providential Wisdom that arranges all things. This is why:
[in Russia], at least, in September the harvest is taken
from the field. And so that some of the Christians might
not feel too satisfied and say: “Soul, thou hast
much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat,
drink, and be merry!” and so that others might not
fall in spirit because of scarcity, the elevated cross is
brought before all. It reminds the former that the support
of well being is not possessions, but their bearing of the
cross in a Christian, inner way, should God’s
goodness bring external plenitude; and it inspires the
latter to possess their souls in patience, through the
certainty that they will go from the cross directly to
heaven. Therefore, may some endure, knowing, that they are
travelling a smooth path to the heavenly kingdom; and may
the others enjoy external comforts with fear, not sealing
the entrance to heaven against themselves.