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Saints, Feasts, and Readings for 11/17/2012

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Prayer Corner

Midnight Office/Nocturnes

Behold the Bridegroom comes in the middle of the night, and blessed is the servant whom He shall find watching and again unworthy is he whom He shall find heedless. Therefore, O my soul, beware, unless you be weighted down with sleep, unless you be given over to death and be shut out from the kingdom.  Rouse yourself, and cry: Holy, Holy, Holy, are You, O God: through the Birthgiver of God have mercy on us.

Meditating on that terrible day, watch, O my soul keeping your lamp lit and filled with oil; for you do not know when the voice will come saying to you: "Behold the Bridegroom!" Therefore, my soul, beware, unless you fall in slumber and be left outside, knocking as the five virgins; but wakefully watch that you may dome to meet Christ with good oil, and He shall bestow on you the divine chamber of His glory.

Orthodox Reading Room

Orthodox Reading Room

The Meaning of Holy Week

Having fulfilled Forty Days... we ask to see the Holy Week of Thy Passion." With these words sung at Vespers of Friday, Lent comes to its end and we enter into the annual commemoration of Christ's suffering, death and Resurrection. It begins on the Saturday of Lazarus. The double feast of Lazarus' resurrection and the Entrance of the Lord to Jerusalem (Palm Sunday) is described in liturgical texts as the "beginning of the Cross" and is to be understood therefore, within the context of the Holy Week. The common Troparion of these days explicitly affirms that by raising Lazarus from the dead Christ confirmed the truth of general resurrection. It is highly significant that we are led into the darkness of the Cross by one of the twelve major feasts of the Church. Light and joy shine not only at the end of Holy Week but also at its beginning. All those familiar with Orthodox worship know the peculiar, almost paradoxical character of Lazarus Saturday services. Read more...

Daily Prayers

Daily Readings

"When you pray, try to let the prayer reach your heart; in other words, it is necessary that your heart should feel what you are talking about in your prayer, that it should wish for the blessing for which you are asking.... Observe, during prayer, whether your heart is in accord with that which you are saying." - St. John of Kronstadt

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Sayings From The Church Fathers

Humility is the gateway to dispassion, said St. John Klimakos; and, according to St. Basil the Great, the fuel of humility is gentleness. It is this that gives man constancy, so that he is always the same whether circumstances and thoughts are pleasant or unpleasant. He is indifferent to both honour and dishonour, joyfully accepting things sweet and painful, and remaining unperturbed.

- St. Peter of Damaskos, from Twenty-Four Discourses No. 9, The Philokalia Vol. 3 edited by Palmer, Sherrard and Ware; Faber and Faber Pgs. 237-238

Orthodox Calendar

In 2016, Holy Pascha is celebrated on May 1st.

See when the Date of Pascha falls in another year:


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