1 Corinthians 10:6.. I would not that ye should be ignorant, how that all our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea; and were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea; and did all eat the same spiritual meat; and did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ. But with many of them God was not well pleased: for they were overthrown in the wilderness. Now these things were our examples, to the intent we should not lust after evil things, as they also lusted. Neither be ye idolaters, as were some of them; as it is written, The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play. Neither let us commit fornication, as some of them committed, and fell in one day three and twenty thousand. Neither let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and were destroyed of serpents. Neither murmur ye, as some of them also murmured, and were destroyed of the destroyer. Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come. Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall. There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make away to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.

Saint Focus:    Saturday is the Feast of St. Aidan of Lindsfarne who was a key evangelizer of the English nation. He won the mostly Anglo-Saxon inhabitants of northern England to Christ by his loving and gentle manner in the 7th century. Even though he couldn’t speak the language (using an interpreter) his life shows that Christian love is a universal language that overcomes all obstacles.

Prayer:  O my God I firmly believe that Thou art one God in three Divine Persons, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost; I believe that Thy Divine Son became man, and died for our sins, and that he will come to judge the living and the dead. I believe these and all the truths which the Holy Catholic Church teaches, because Thou hast revealed them, who canst neither deceive nor be deceived. (Act of Faith)

**Orthodox Elders excerpts

Vladimir Basenkov Reviews the Daily Prayer Cycle… “Prayer began with Vespers, as evening was given the first place in the book of Genesis: And the evening and the morning (Gen. 1:5). The beginning of human history was joyous, but it was quickly darkened by the Fall. St. John Cassian the Roman describes Compline as a service done “after evening,” or after dinner. Initially, it was a prayer “for the coming sleep” for monks. Unsurprisingly, it became its own peculiar form of evening prayers for the laity at a later time. The rite of forgiveness with a kneeling plea to God to forgive one for all the trespasses of that day has been preserved in Compline to our day. Midnight Office recalls the imminence of the Second Coming of Christ. This service, the first to be served after sleep, became an unspoken morning prayer rule in Rus’. In Edinovertsi parish practice it’s usually read as the first service of morning worship. The events of Matins are dedicated to the appearance of Christ in the world and His Resurrection. Today, Matins is more often served in the evening in parishes. In ancient times, it could also be prayed early in the morning, when they woke up at midnight for the Midnight Office.   Continued tomorrow…


Prayer:  Having risen from sleep I hasten to Thee, O Lord, Lover of men, and by Thy loving-kindness I strive to do Thy work, and I pray to Thee:  help me at all times, in everything, and deliver me from every evil thing of the world and every attack of the devil, and lead me into Thine eternal Kingdom. For Thou art my Creator, the Giver and Provider of everything good, and all my hope is in Thee, and to Thee I send up glory, now and ever, and to the ages of ages.  Amen.
*Prayer for the next day’s morning

From yesterday….

The First Hour is dedicated to the remembrance of the judgment of Pilate and the high priests over the Lord, the Third to the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the apostles, the Sixth to the Crucifixion and sufferings of Christ on the Cross, and the Ninth to His death on the Cross. Instead of Liturgy, they would usually serve Typika in the lay rank and a moleben dedicated to the feast of the day. It should be noted that in this way, the laity would serve the full cycle more often, of course, collectively in churches and chapels, in the absence of a priest. It was a rarity at home, but that didn’t rule out the possibility. In any case, Christians tried to live in a liturgical cycle, as the Church services in Rus’ were the best school of theology—hence their length, which allowed people to immerse themselves in attentive listening to the words of the sacred texts. Today it seems nearly impossible to do the services under our home conditions. Work, family, a million cares… But we should at least try, and if we don’t pray the entire daily cycle, then at least part of it.”

Prayer:  Hail, Holy Queen, Mother of Mercy, our life, our sweetness and our hope! To thee do we cry, poor banished children of Eve. To thee do we send up our sighs, mourning and weeping in this valley of tears! Turn, then, O most gracious Advocate, thine eyes of mercy toward us, and after this, our exile, show unto us the blessed fruit of thy womb, Jesus. O clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary.
V. Pray for us, O holy Mother of God.
R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.
*Salve Regina

Elder St Paisios on Philotimo… “Our faith must have philotimo [Christ-like outlook and attitude], and that’s where the philotimo-filled struggle begins. And the more we struggle with philotimo, the more our faith will increase, and the more our love will increase. In this philotimo-filled struggle, it helps greatly to keep God’s blessings in mind. Someone who has a strong sense of philotimo does not wonder if there is Paradise, but struggles, because he believes and loves God. Whereas someone who does not have philotimo will begin to wonder, ‘Why should I even struggle? Does Paradise really exist? Will there be a Judgment Day?’ And when someone is ungrateful, no matter what you do for him, he will still be ungrateful. Whereas the man who has philotimo praises God even in a time of temptation and will gradually start being continuously grateful to God. That’s when the divine transformation comes to his soul, keeping him in constant joy and gladness. Another person may have no temptations or trials of any kind, and only have blessings, and yet will never be satisfied with anything.”

Prayer:  Queen of Heaven rejoice, alleluia: For He whom you merited to bear, alleluia, Has risen as He said, alleluia. Pray for us to God, alleluia. Rejoice and be glad, O Virgin Mary, alleluia. Because the Lord is truly risen, alleluia.
Let us pray : O God, who by the Resurrection of Thy Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, granted joy to the whole world: grant we beg Thee, that through the intercession of the Virgin Mary, His Mother, we may lay hold of the joys of eternal life. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.
*Regina Coeli

Elder Ephraim of Arizona on Purity of Mind… “My child, fight the good fight of eternal life. Make a good beginning to obtain an excellent end. Keep your nous entirely engrossed in the recollection of Jesus, and He will become everything for you—joy, peace, mourning, and a multitude of life-flowing tears, which will make your soul whiter than snow and lighter than a cloud. My child, when you keep silent and say the prayer with attention—that is, when the nous pays attention to the prayer being said, without wandering off into something else other than the prayer—then your nous will begin to draw near to the sweetness of Jesus. Constantly humbling yourself will greatly help you achieve this goal. Humility is reproaching yourself always in any temptation or any matter whatsoever, and always justifying your brother. The greatest temple, in which God delights to dwell, is that which He skillfully crafted with His own hands—our entire being, our soul, as long as it is pure. Purity of heart consists in the nous being free from evil thoughts, from which evil and passionate feelings originate which cause the body to be passionately excited. For it is then that both soul and body are defiled, and to a certain degree their purity and spotlessness are lost.”

Prayer:  The Angel of the Lord declared unto Mary.   And she conceived of the Holy Ghost.
Hail Mary, full of Grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou amongst women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, mother of God, pray for us sinners now and in the hour of our death.
Behold the handmaid of the Lord.  Be it done unto me according to thy word.  (Repeat HM)

Elder Anthimos+ on a Foundation for Youth…
“Until the age of sixteen, man’s mind is imperfect, and for this reason falls into many transgressions. In this day and age, parents must bring their children up “in the discipline and admonition of the Lord” (Eph. 6:4). If children are taught the correct things by their parents and are placed on a firm footing and enter the straight and true road which safeguards the body’s health and lifts the soul to the divine likeness, then they will have constant success in their life and will live in a healthy way, because some are neuropathic from the abuses of their foolishness, and others schizophrenic. To prevent all these sick conditions we must have “life in Christ” as our model and be close to the Church, which is our common Mother. She is the Kingdom of God, the Body of Christ. We must subject ourselves to Christ, the head of our Church, just as our body is subject to the head. If young people return and submit to Christ, they will be saved, as He Himself assured, “those who return to me, I shall heal”

Prayer:  And the Word became Flesh.  And dwelt among us.
Hail Mary, full of Grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou amongst women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, mother of God, pray for us sinners now and in the hour of our death.
Pray for us, O Holy Mother of God.  That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Let us pray. Pour forth, we beseech Thee, O Lord, Thy grace into our hearts; that, we to whom the Incarnation of Christ, Thy Son, was made known by the message of an Angel, may by His Passion and Cross, be brought to the glory of His Resurrection. Through the same Christ our Lord.

Elder St Paisios on the Need for Spiritual Direction… “A young person needs a spiritual guide, someone to advise him and be eager to listen to his concerns, in order to proceed with “spiritual safety”, avoiding dangers, fears and all kinds of dead ends. All of us, as we grow older, acquire experience from our own lives and from the lives of others. But a young person lacks this experience. This is why an older person can help inexperienced youth avoid blunders. When young people refuse to take advice, they end up experimenting with their own lives. But if they follow the advice given to them, the gain will be theirs. Young men from a Christian organization visited my Kalvvi once and were boasting, full of self-confidence, “We don’t need anybody; we’ll find our own way!” Who knows why they said that? Perhaps they had been pressured too much and were rebelling. When they were about to leave, they asked me to point them in the right direction for Iveron Monastery. “Which way should we go?” they asked. ‘Wait a minute,’ I told them, ‘didn’t you hoys say that you needed no one, that you will find your own way? Didn’t you just say that? If you miss this road you’ll have only a minor inconvenience; at some point, you will run into someone, and he will show you the way. But who is going to show you the road to Heaven?’

Prayer:  May the souls of the faithful departed through the mercy of God rest in peace.