Communion in Prayer with the Saints

Repose of the New-Hieromartyr Cosmas of Aetolia, Equal of the Apostles

Repose of the New-Hieromartyr Cosmas of Aetolia, Equal of the Apostles

My beloved spiritual children in Christ Our Only True God and Our Only True Savior,
CHRIST IS IN OUR MIDST! HE WAS, IS, AND EVER SHALL BE. Ο ΧΡΙΣΤΟΣ ΕΝ ΤΩ ΜΕΣΩ ΗΜΩΝ! ΚΑΙ ΗΝ ΚΑΙ ΕΣΤΙ ΚΑΙ ΕΣΤΑΙ.

A PRAYER FOR DAILY PERSONAL SUPPORT
(Saint Paisios the Great)

+In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen. Lord Jesus Christ my God, today grant me a good day without sin and vain distractions. Lord, do not abandon me. Lord, do not turn away from me. Lord, extend to me a hand of assistance. Lord, support me in the fear of You. Let this fear of You but also Your love be implanted deeply into my heart. Lord, grant compunction and humility to my heart. Lord, grant me constant tears and contrition and the remembrance of death. Lord, deliver me from every temptation of the spirit and of the body. Lord, deliver me from every negligence, laziness, sorrow, forgetfulness, insensitivity, callousness and the surrender to captivity of my mind. Lord, as You know and as You want, have mercy on me and forgive all of my transgressions. Lord, having attained peace through a good repentance and a ready and full confession, I hope that You will permit my lamentable soul, in due time, to make its exodus from this body in pure and perfect faith. Amen.

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TODAY'S SYNAXARION (THE COMMEMORATION OF TODAY'S SAINTS):

On August 24th Our Holy Orthodox Christian Church commemorates, honors and entreats the holy intercessions of the following Saints, Forefathers, Fathers, Patriarchs, Prophets, Apostles, Preachers, Evangelists, Martyrs, Confessors, Ascetics, Teachers and of every righteous soul made perfect in Our Holy Orthodox Christian faith: Holy Martyr Eutyches, disciple of Saint John the Theologian and the Holy Apostle Paul; Holy Martyr Tation of Claudiopolis; our Righteous Father George the Confessor of Limnae; recovery of the sacred relics of our Father among the Saints Dionysius of Zakynthos, Archbishop of Aegina; Holy New Hieromartyr Cosmas Aitolos, the Equal of the Apostles, was perfected in martyrdom by strangling in Albania in the year 1779; Holy Virgin Martyr Sira of Persia; St. Audoenus, Bishop of Rouen; Holy Relics of our Father among the Saints Peter, Metropolitan of Kiev; our Righteous Father Arsenius of Komel; our Righteous Father Serapion the Wonderworker, Egoumenos (Abbot) of the Monastery of the Baptist in Georgia; Holy New Hieromartyr Maximus Sandovich, the Priest, who was slain by the Latins in Galicia in the year 1924; Synaxis of the Holy Sion and Petrovskaya Holy Icon of the Most Holy Mother of God.

+By the holy intercessions of Your Saints, Holy Martyrs, Holy Righteous, Holy Hieromartyrs, Holy Metropolitans, Holy Monks, Holy Nuns, Holy Mothers, Holy Wonderworkers, Holy Egoumenoi, Holy Fathers, Holy Ascetics, O Christ Our God, have mercy on us and save us. Amen.

The Holy Hieromartyr Eutyches, Disciple of Saint John the Theologian. The Translation of the Holy Relics of our Father Among the Saints Peter, Metropolitan of Moscow. Saint Cosmas of Aetolia (Aitolos), Equal to the Apostles.

Saint Eutyches was a disciple of Saint John the Theologian and a fellow laborer of the Holy Apostle Paul. He preached the Gospel in many places, pulled down the idols' temples, and suffered imprisonments and many tortures at the hands of the idolaters. He finally reposed in peace in deep old age in his native city of Sebastia, near Tarsus.

On this day we also commemorate the translation (anakomide) of the holy relics of Saint Peter, Metropolitan of Moscow, which took place in the year 1646.

Our Holy Father Cosmas the Aitolos was from the town of Mega Dendron (Great Tree) of Aetolia. At the age of twenty, he went to study at the school of the Monastery of Vatopedi on the Holy Mountain. Later, he came to the Athonite Monastery of Philotheou where he was tonsured. With the blessing of his Egoumenos (Abbot), he departed for Constantinople where he learned the art of rhetoric, and thereafter, he began to preach throughout all the regions of Northern Greece, the Ionian Islands, but especially in Albania, for the Christian people there were in great ignorance because of the enslavement and oppression and cruelty of the Muslims. Finally, in 1776, after having greatly strengthened and enlightened the faithful, working many signs and wonders (miracles) all the while, he was falsely accused by the leaders of the Jewish people and was executed by strangulation by the Muslim Turks in Albania.

Apolytikion (Dismissal) Hymn of St. Eutyches. Fourth Tone

As a sharer of the ways and a successor to the throne of the Apostles, O inspired of God, thou foundest discipline to be a means of ascent to the divine vision. Wherefore, having rightly divided the word of truth, thou dist also contest for the Faith even unto blood, O Hieromartyr Eutyches. Intercede with Christ our God that our souls be saved.

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Apolytikion (Dismissal) Hymn of Saint Cosmas. Fourth Tone

With odes let us acclaim the renowned Cosmas, who gloriously excelled among the choirs of the martyrs, priests, and ascetics, and let us gather; for he dispenseth healing to them that have recourse to him with faith, since, as an equal of the Apostles, he hath boldness before Christ.

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TODAY'S SACRED SCRIPTURAL READINGS ARE THE FOLLOWING:

Holy Epistle Lesson: II Corinthians 8:7-15
Holy Gospel Lesson: St. Mark 3:6-12

INSPIRING WORDS FROM THE HOLY ASCETICS, HOLY MOTHERS AND HOLY FATHERS OF THE CHURCH:

"The very harmony of creation, its preservation and governing, teach us that there is a God Who have put all this together and keeps it together, ever maintaining it and providing for it" (St. John of Damascus).

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COMMUNION IN PRAYER WITH THE SAINTS
(Source: Orthodox Dogmatic Theology by Father Michael Pomazansky)

The Church prays for all who have died in the faith, asking forgiveness for their sins. For there is no man without sin, "if he have lived even a single day upon earth" (Job 14:5, Septuagint). "If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us" (1 John 1:8). Therefore, no matter how righteous a man might be, when he departs from this world, the Church accompanies his departure with prayer for him to the Lord. "Brethren, pray for us," the Holy Apostle Paul asks his spiritual children (1 Thes. 5:25).

At the same time, when the common voice of the Church testifies to the righteousness of the reposed person, Christians, apart from prayer for him, are taught by the good example of his life to place him as an example to be imitated.

And when, further, the common conviction of the sanctity of the reposed person is confirmed by special testimonies, such as martyrdom, fearless confession, self-sacrificing service to the Church, the gift of healing, and especially when the Lord confirms the sanctity of the reposed person by miracles after his death when he is remembered in prayer--then the Church glorifies him in a special way. How can the Church not glorify those whom the Lord Himself calls His "friends?" "You are My friends…I have called you friends" (St. John 15:140-15), whom He has received in His heavenly mansions in fulfillment if the words: "Where I am, there you may be also" (St. John 14:3). When this happens, prayers for the forgiveness of the sins of the departed one and for his repose cease; they give way to other forms of Church communion with him, namely: (a) the praising of his struggles in Christ, since "neither do men light a candle and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house" (St. Matthew 5:15); (b) petitions to him that he might pray for us, for the remission of our sins, for our moral advancement, and that he might help us in our spiritual needs and in our sorrows.

It is said: "Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth" (Rev. 14:13); and we indeed bless them.

It is said: "And the glory which Thou gavest Me, I have given them" (St. John 17:22); and we indeed give them this glory, according to the Savior's commandment.

Likewise the Savior said" "He that receiveth a prophet in the name of a prophet shall receive a prophet's reward; and he that he receiveth a righteous man in the name of a righteous man shall receive a righteous man's reward" (St. Matthew 10:41). "Whosoever shall do the will of My Father which is in heaven, the same is My brother, and sister, and mother" (St. Matthew 12:50). Therefore, we also should receive a righteous man as a righteous man. If he is a brother for the Lord, then he should be such for us also. The Saints are our spiritual brothers, sisters, mothers, fathers, and our love for them is expressed by communion in prayer with them.

The Apostle John wrote to the Christians: "That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship prayer of the Saints in heaven for their earthly brethren. The witnesses of the martyric death of Saint Ignatius the God-Bearer with tears, we had the all-night vigil...Then, after sleeping a little, some of us suddenly saw blessed Ignatius standing and embracing us, and others likewise saw him praying for us." Similar records, mentioning the prayers and intercessions for us of the martyrs, are to be found in other accounts form the epoch of persecutions against Christians.

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MY BLESSING TO ALL OF YOU

The Grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God and Father, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you. Amen.

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Glory Be To GOD For All Things!

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With sincere agape in His Holy Diakonia,
The sinner and unworthy servant of God

+Father George