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Sunday, 21st May 2017 --- 13 Bashans 1733


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Readings for Sunday, 21st May 2017 --- 13 Bashans 1733


Vespers

Vespers Psalm

From the Psalms of our teacher David the prophet.
May his blessings be with us all.

Psalms 135 : 6,21

Chapter 135

6Whatever the LORD pleases He does, In heaven and in earth, In the seas and in all deep places.
21Blessed be the LORD out of Zion, Who dwells in Jerusalem! Praise the LORD!

Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord. Our Lord God, Savior, and King of us all, Jesus Christ, the Living Son of God to whom be glory forever.
Amen.

Vespers Gospel

Stand in the fear of God and listen to the Holy Gospel.
A reading from the Gospel according to our teacher Saint John the Evangelist.
May His Blessings be with us all.

John 14 : 21 - 25

Chapter 14

21He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me. And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and manifest Myself to him."
22Judas (not Iscariot) said to Him, "Lord, how is it that You will manifest Yourself to us, and not to the world?"
23Jesus answered and said to him, "If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him.
24He who does not love Me does not keep My words; and the word which you hear is not Mine but the Father's who sent Me.
25"These things I have spoken to you while being present with you.

And Glory be to God forever.


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Matins

Matins Psalm

From the Psalms of our teacher David the prophet.
May his blessings be with us all.

Psalms 135 : 19 - 20

Chapter 135

19Bless the LORD, O house of Israel! Bless the LORD, O house of Aaron!
20Bless the LORD, O house of Levi! You who fear the LORD, bless the LORD!

Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord. Our Lord God, Savior, and King of us all, Jesus Christ, the Living Son of God to whom be glory forever.
Amen.


Matins Gospel

Stand in the fear of God and listen to the Holy Gospel.
A reading from the Gospel according to our teacher Saint John the Evangelist.
May His Blessings be with us all.

John 15 : 4 - 8

Chapter 15

4Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me.
5"I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.
6If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned.
7If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you.
8By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples.

And Glory be to God forever.


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Liturgy

Paulines Epistle

Paul, the servant of our Lord Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, appointed to the Gospel of God.
A reading from the Epistle of our teacher Paul to the Hebrews .
May his blessings be upon us.
Amen.

Hebrews 10 : 19 - 38

Chapter 10

19Therefore, brethren, having boldness to enter the Holiest by the blood of Jesus,
20by a new and living way which He consecrated for us, through the veil, that is, His flesh,
21and having a High Priest over the house of God,
22let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water.
23Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.
24And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works,
25not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.
26For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins,
27but a certain fearful expectation of judgment, and fiery indignation which will devour the adversaries.
28Anyone who has rejected Moses' law dies without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses.
29Of how much worse punishment, do you suppose, will he be thought worthy who has trampled the Son of God underfoot, counted the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified a common thing, and insulted the Spirit of grace?
30For we know Him who said, "Vengeance is Mine, I will repay," says the Lord. And again, "The LORD will judge His people."
31It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.
32But recall the former days in which, after you were illuminated, you endured a great struggle with sufferings:
33partly while you were made a spectacle both by reproaches and tribulations, and partly while you became companions of those who were so treated;
34for you had compassion on me in my chains, and joyfully accepted the plundering of your goods, knowing that you have a better and an enduring possession for yourselves in heaven.
35Therefore do not cast away your confidence, which has great reward.
36For you have need of endurance, so that after you have done the will of God, you may receive the promise:
37"For yet a little while, And He who is coming will come and will not tarry.
38Now the just shall live by faith; But if anyone draws back, My soul has no pleasure in him."

The grace of God the Father be with you all.
Amen.


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Catholic Epistle

A Reading from Epistle 1 of St. Peter .
May his blessing be upon us.
Amen.

1 Peter 4 : 6 - 14

Chapter 4

6For this reason the gospel was preached also to those who are dead, that they might be judged according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the spirit.
7But the end of all things is at hand; therefore be serious and watchful in your prayers.
8And above all things have fervent love for one another, for "love will cover a multitude of sins."
9Be hospitable to one another without grumbling.
10As each one has received a gift, minister it to one another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.
11If anyone speaks, let him speak as the oracles of God. If anyone ministers, let him do it as with the ability which God supplies, that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belong the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.
12Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you;
13but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ's sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy.
14If you are reproached for the name of Christ, blessed are you, for the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you. On their part He is blasphemed, but on your part He is glorified.

Do not love the world or the things in the world.
The world passes away, and its desires; but he who does the will of God abides forever.
Amen.


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Acts of the Apostles

The Acts of our fathers the apostles, may their blessings be with us.

Acts 9 : 1 - 20

Chapter 9

1Then Saul, still breathing threats and murder against the disciples of the Lord, went to the high priest
2and asked letters from him to the synagogues of Damascus, so that if he found any who were of the Way, whether men or women, he might bring them bound to Jerusalem.
3As he journeyed he came near Damascus, and suddenly a light shone around him from heaven.
4Then he fell to the ground, and heard a voice saying to him, "Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?"
5And he said, "Who are You, Lord?" Then the Lord said, "I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting. It is hard for you to kick against the goads."
6So he, trembling and astonished, said, "Lord, what do You want me to do?" Then the Lord said to him, "Arise and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do."
7And the men who journeyed with him stood speechless, hearing a voice but seeing no one.
8Then Saul arose from the ground, and when his eyes were opened he saw no one. But they led him by the hand and brought him into Damascus.
9And he was three days without sight, and neither ate nor drank.
10Now there was a certain disciple at Damascus named Ananias; and to him the Lord said in a vision, "Ananias." And he said, "Here I am, Lord."
11So the Lord said to him, "Arise and go to the street called Straight, and inquire at the house of Judas for one called Saul of Tarsus, for behold, he is praying.
12And in a vision he has seen a man named Ananias coming in and putting his hand on him, so that he might receive his sight."
13Then Ananias answered, "Lord, I have heard from many about this man, how much harm he has done to Your saints in Jerusalem.
14And here he has authority from the chief priests to bind all who call on Your name."
15But the Lord said to him, "Go, for he is a chosen vessel of Mine to bear My name before Gentiles, kings, and the children of Israel.
16For I will show him how many things he must suffer for My name's sake."
17And Ananias went his way and entered the house; and laying his hands on him he said, "Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus, who appeared to you on the road as you came, has sent me that you may receive your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit."
18Immediately there fell from his eyes something like scales, and he received his sight at once; and he arose and was baptized.
19So when he had received food, he was strengthened. Then Saul spent some days with the disciples at Damascus.
20Immediately he preached the Christ in the synagogues, that He is the Son of God.

The word of the Lord shall grow, multiply, be mighty, and be confirmed, in the holy Church of God.
Amen.


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Divine Psalm

Stand in the fear of God and listen to the Holy Gospel.
A reading from the Gospel according to our teacher Saint John the Evangelist.
May His Blessings be with us all. Amen.
From the Psalms of our teacher David the prophet, and the Good King.
May his blessings be with us all.

Psalms 136 : 1 - 2

Chapter 136

1Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever.
2Oh, give thanks to the God of gods! For His mercy endures forever.


Hallelujah.


Divine Gospel

Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.
Our Lord God, Savior, and King of us all, Jesus Christ, the Living Son of God to whom be glory forever.
Amen.

John 14 : 1 - 11

Chapter 14

1"Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me.
2In My Father's house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.
3And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.
4And where I go you know, and the way you know."
5Thomas said to Him, "Lord, we do not know where You are going, and how can we know the way?"
6Jesus said to him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.
7"If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also; and from now on you know Him and have seen Him."
8Philip said to Him, "Lord, show us the Father, and it is sufficient for us."
9Jesus said to him, "Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; so how can you say, "Show us the Father'?
10Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me? The words that I speak to you I do not speak on My own authority; but the Father who dwells in Me does the works.
11Believe Me that I am in the Father and the Father in Me, or else believe Me for the sake of the works themselves.


And Glory be to God forever.


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Not being read in the Church during this period.

Synaxarium

The Thirteenth Day of the Blessed Month of Bashans

Departure of St.Arsanius, the Tutor of the Emperor's Children

      On this day, of the year 445 A.D., the ascetic, fighter, and wise father St. Arsanius departed. He was born in Rome from a very rich Christian parents. They taught him church subjects and ordained him a deacon. He was highly knowledgeable in the Greek culture and endowed with great Christian values. When Emperor Theodosius the Great sought for a good and wise man to teach his sons Honorius and Arcadius, he could not find a better person than Arsanius. He brought him to his palace and entrusted the teaching of his sons to him. St. Arsanius taught them and admonished them, as was fitting. Since he devoted much exertion and toil in teaching them, he inflicted them once with painful beatings. When Emperor Theodosius their father died, Honorius reigned over Rome and Arcadius reigned over Constantinople. The Saint remembered that he once beat them, and that Honorius desired to do him harm. While he was thinking of this, a voice came from the Lord saying: "O Arsani, get out from this world and you shall be saved." Once he heard this voice, he did not tarry, changed his clothing, and came to the city Alexandria. Then he went to the wilderness of St. Macarius (Sheahat - Scete), where he fought a great fight with fasting, prayer and long vigils. At the beginning of his monastic life, he reviewed his thoughts to a simple monk for advice. The monks were surprised and said to him: "Does someone like Arsanius who is very well versed in Greek and Roman culture, need the advice of this simple monk?" He told them that the Coptic Alpha Beta of this monk had not been mastered by Arsanius. He meant by this the virtues of that monk. A messenger came from Rome carrying a will of one of St. Arsanius' relatives who had departed, granting all his possessions to the Saint. The Saint asked: "When did this man die?" The messenger answered: "One year ago." The Saint said: "I have died eleven years ago, and those who died to the world can not inherit others who died."

      One of the noble women of Rome came to visit him because she heard of his righteousness. After she visited with him for a short while, she asked him to remember her in his prayer. He said to her: "May God erase all your memory from my mind." She returned sorrowful and complained to the Pope in objection to this statement. Pope Theophylus clarified to her what he meant, that he was afraid, that the devil might use her memory to tempt him. When Arsanius started his monastic life, he used to select for himself the white beans for his food. When the Abbot of the monastery noticed, he gently struck the monk, who was sitting beside Arsanius saying: "It is not right that you distinguish yourself from your brethren by selecting the white beans." Arsanius said: "This stroke is directed to you, O Arsanius!" Arsanius mastered the virtue of silence. When he was asked about that, he said: "Many times I regretted that I have spoken, but I have never regretted on being silent." He was a very humble and modest man, who lived from selling the works of his hands by pleating palm leaves, and giving the rest to the poor. He put down many useful sayings and teachings. Whenever he entered the church, he hid behind a pillar of the church so no one would see him. His appearance was good, his face was bright and very cheerful. He was tall in stature, but he became bowed because of his age. He visited Jerusalem when he was seventy years old, to be blessed by the holy places, and then he returned to Sheahat. When he departed, he was ninety-five years old: He spent forty years in Rome, forty years in the wilderness of St. Macarius, ten years in Mount Torah, three years in the monasteries of Alexandria, then he returned to Mount Torah and lived there for two years.

      He had commanded his disciples to throw his body on a certain mountain, so that wild beasts and vultures would eat him. However, fear gripped him, just before his soul departed from his body and his disciples said to him: "Is someone like Arsanius fearing death?" He replied: "Since I had become a monk, I dreaded this hour." He became calm, his soul was comforted, and a peaceful look covered his face as if he was saying: " Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; For You are with me" (Psalms 23:4). He departed in peace in the year 445 A.D. When Theodosius II, the son of Arcadius, knew of his death, he brought his body to Constantinople. He built a monastery on the same place where he departed, which was known in history as the monastery of El-Kosair.
From his sayings:
An old monk was sitting in his cell, heard a voice saying to him: "Go out so I might show you the deeds of people." When he went out, he saw a man cutting wood. When he tried to carry it, he could not, and instead of reducing his load, he increased it, and tried to carry it again, but failed, and did this again and again. Then he walked away and saw another man getting water from a well and pouring it in a pot with a hole in it, and the man could not fill it. Then he saw two men riding on two horses, carrying a pole from each side. When they came to the door, their pride prevented that one would stay behind in order to get the pole in, and therefore they remained outside.

      St. Arsanius explained this vision to them, saying: "The wood cutter was a man with a multitude of sins. Instead of repenting, he added more and more to his sins. The man who wanted to fill the pot with water was a charitable man who gave alms from what he earned unjustly, and his reward was lost. The two men carrying the pole were carrying the burden of our Lord Christ, but with great pride, and therefore they both stayed outside the kingdom.

May his prayers be with us and glory be to God forever. Amen.


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Acknowledgement