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Daily Scripture Readings, Troparion and Kontakion

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Selected quotes and teachings of the Holy Fathers

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Daily Reading:

Saturday November 14th/27th
26th Week After Pentecost

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In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit:

Illumine my heart, O Master who lovest mankind, with the pure light of Thy divine knowledge. Open Thou the eyes of my mind to the understanding of Thy Gospel teachings. Implant also in me a love for Thy blessed commandments. Grant me the grace to overcome all my carnal desires, so that I may enter more completely into a spiritual manner of living, both thinking and doing such things as are well pleasing to Thee. For Thou art the illumination of our souls and bodies, O Christ our God, and unto Thee do we ascribe glory, together with Thine all-holy, good and life-creating Spirit; now and ever and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

O Lord Jesus Christ, open Thou the eyes of my heart, that I may hear Thy word and understand and do Thy will, for I am a sojourner upon the earth. Hide not Thy commandments from me, but open mine eyes, that I may perceive the wonders of Thy law. Speak unto me the hidden and secret things of Thy wisdom. On Thee do I set my hope, O my God, that Thou shalt enlighten my mind and understanding with the light of Thy knowledge, not only to cherish those things which are written, but to do them; that in reading the lives and sayings of the Saints I may not sin, but that such may serve for my restoration, enlightenment and sanctification, for the salvation of my soul, and the inheritance of life everlasting. For Thou art the enlightenment of those who lie in darkness, and from Thee cometh every good deed and every gift. Amen.

By the intercessions of Thine All-immaculate Mother and of all Thy Saints, Lord Jesus Christ, our God, have mercy on us and save us. Amen

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Galatians 3:8-12

And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed. So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham. For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them. But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith. And the law is not of faith: but, The man that doeth them shall live in them.

Luke 9:57-62

And it came to pass, that, as they went in the way, a certain man said unto Him, "Lord, I will follow thee whithersoever thou goest". And Jesus said unto Him, "Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay his head." And He said unto another, "Follow me." But he said, "Lord, suffer me first to go and bury my father." Jesus said unto him, "Let the dead bury their dead: but go thou and preach the kingdom of God." And another also said, "Lord, I will follow thee; but let me first go bid them farewell, which are at home at my house." And Jesus said unto him, "No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God. "

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Troparion of the Holy Apostle Philip Tone 3
Thou didst receive the enlightenment of the Comforter/ and rise on the world like a star;/ with divine Light thou didst dispel the darkness of ignorance,/ O Apostle Philip. We entreat thee,/ intercede with Christ our God to grant us His great mercy.

Troparion of St Gregory of Palamas Tone 8
Light of Orthodoxy, Pillar and Teacher of the Church,/ adornment of monks and champion of theologians,/O Gregory, wonderworker, boast of Thessalonica,/ preacher of grace, pray that our souls may be saved.

Troparion of St Dyfrig Tone 1
Thou art worthily honoured as the Father of Welsh Monasticism, O Hierarch Dyfrig,/ labouring to establish true asceticism with thy brother in the Faith, Samson of Dol,/ whom thou didst raise to the dignity of the episcopate./ In thy pastoral love, O Saint,/ pray for us that despite our unspiritual lives/ Christ our God will grant us great mercy.

Troparion of St Malo Tone 1
Thy life, O Father Malo, was resplendent with many virtues./ As thou wast unwavering in thy faith to thy last breath,/ O Saint, pray that we may emulate thy virtues/ and thereby be found worthy of eternal salvation.

Kontakion of the Holy Apostle Philip Tone 8
Thy disciple and friend and imitator of thy Passion, inspired Philip, preached Thee to the world./ Through the Mother of God, keep the Church from her enemies by his prayers, O most merciful Saviour.

Kontakion of St Gregory Palamas Tone 8
Organ of wisdom, clear trumpet of theology,/ Gregory of divine speech, we praise thee./ As thou dost stand before the Primordial Mind direct our minds to Him that we may cry:/ Rejoice, O Gregory, herald of grace!

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The Holy Apostle Philip.

He was born in Bethsaida near the Sea of Galilee, as were Peter and Andrew. Instructed in the Holy Scriptures from his youth, Philip immediately responded to the call of Christ and followed Him (John 1:43). After the descent of the Holy Spirit, Philip preached the Gospel with zeal in many regions of Asia and in Greece, where the Jews sought to kill him but the Lord saved him by the might of His wonders. The Jewish leaders, whose aim it was to kill Philip, were suddenly blinded, and found themselves in total darkness. There was a great earthquake, and the earth opened and swallowed up Philip's wicked persecutors. Many other wonders were wrought, especially the healing of the sick, by which many of the pagans came to faith in Christ. In the Phrygian town of Hierapolis, St Philip worked for the Gospel with John the Theologian, his own sister Mariamna and the Apostle Bartholomew. There was in that place a dangerous snake, which the pagans fed with care and worshipped as a god. God's Apostle destroyed the snake with prayer as though with a spear. This called forth the fury of the benighted people, and the wicked pagans seized Philip and crucified him upside-down on a tree, and then crucified
Bartholomew also. At this, the earth opened and swallowed up the judge and many others with him. The terrified people ran to take the crucified apostles down, but they succeeded only in taking Bartholomew down alive; Philip had already breathed his last. Bartholomew made Stachys bishop for those baptised in the city. Stachys had been cured of blindness and baptised by Philip, having been blind for forty years. St Philip's relics were later taken to Rome. This wonderful Apostle suffered in the year 86, in the time of the Emperor Domitian.

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St Gregory Palamas, Archbishop of Salonica.

Gregory's father was an eminent official at the court of the Emperor Andronicus II Palaeologus. The gifted Gregory, completing his secular studies, did not want to go into imperial service at court, but withdrew to the Holy Mountain and became a monk, living in asceticism at Vatopedi and the Great Lavra. He waged war against the heretic Barlaam, and finally overcame him. He was consecrated Metropolitan of Salonica in 1347, being glorified both as an ascetic and a
theologian, both as a hierarch and a wonderworker. The most holy Mother of God, St John the Theologian, St Dimitrios, St Antony the Great, St John Chrysostom and angels of God all appeared to him at different times. He governed the Church in Salonica for twelve years,
of which he spent one year in slavery to the Saracens in Asia. He entered peacefully into rest in 1359, and entered into the Kingdom of Christ. His relics are preserved in Salonica, where there is a beautiful church dedicated to his name.

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St Justinian, Emperor of Byzantium.

A Slav by birth, he was probably a Serb from the Skoplje region. He succeeded his uncle Justin on the throne in 527. Justinian's great kingship is inseparably linked with his deep Orthodox faith: he believed, and lived according to his belief. In the Great Fast, he neither ate bread nor drank wine, but ate only vegetables and drank water. He made war against the barbarians of the Danube only because they castrated their captives. This reveals his high sense of love
for his fellow-men. He was successful in both his wars and his deeds, and built a great many beautiful churches, of which by far the finest, in all of Christendom was the Hagia Sophia in Constantinople. He collected and published the Laws of Rome (the term Justice comes
from the law of justinian), and himself published strict laws against immorality and licentious behaviour. He composed the hymn: 'O only- begotten Son and Word of God', which was first sung in the Liturgy in 536. He summoned the Fifth Ecumenical Council in 553, and died
peacefully on November 14th, 565, at the age of eighty, entering into the Kingdom of the heavenly King.

From The Prologue From Ochrid-
by Bishop (Saint) Nikolai Velimirovich