The Feastday of the Holy Hieromartyr Haralambos

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.

Apolytikion (Dismissal) Hymn. Fourth Tone

An unshaken pillar of the Church of Christ God art thou, an ever-resplendent lamp, O Haralambos most wise, which shineth throughout the earth; in martyric contest thou hast shined on the whole world, and thou has dispelled the moonless night of the idols. Now boldly intercede thou with Christ that we may all be saved.

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Kontakion Hymn. Fourth Tone

Thou didst rise up in the East, a luminary that enlightened faithful men with thy bright shafts of miracles, O Haralambos, hence we revere thy godly contest, O Martyr of sacred fame.

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

On the 10th of February 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 Hieromartyr Haralambos of Magnesia; Saint Anastasios, Patriarch of Jerusalem; Saints Porphyrios and Baptos the Monk-Martyrs, the former torturers of Saint Haralambos, who were perfected in martyrdom by the sword; the Three Holy Women who believed through Saint Haralambos and were perfected in martyrdom by the sword; Holy Martyrs and Virgins Ennatha, Valentina, and Paul in Caesaria of Palestine; our Righteous Father Zeno the Imperial Courtier, from Caesaria in Cappadocia, who led the ascetical life in Antioch; Holy Virgin-Martryr Soteris of Rome; our Righteous Mother Scholastica, sister of St. Benedict; our Fathers among the Saints Joachim, Luke, Germanos, Arcadios, Gregory, Martyrios, Anthony, Basil, and Symeon, Archpastors of Novgorod; our Righteous Mother Anna, Princess of Novgorod; our Righteous Father Prochoros of the Kiev Caves; our Righteous Father Longinus of Koryazhema; Synaxis of our Most Holy Lady the Theotokos in Areobindos.

+By the holy intercessions of Your Saints, Holy Hieromartyrs, Holy Martyrs, Holy Women, Holy Ascetics, Holy Archpastors, Holy Virgin-Martyrs, Holy Fathers, Holy Mothers, Holy Confessors, O Christ our God, have mercy on us and save us. Amen.

THE HIEROMARTYR CHARALAMBOS (HARALAMPUS). This great Saint was bishop in Magnesia, and suffered for Christ at the age of 113. When a violent persecution broke out under the Emperor Septimus Severus, the aged Haralambos did not hide from his persecutors, but freely and openly preached the Christian faith. He endured all tortures as though not in the body, and when they flayed the living flesh from him, the godly Saint said to the Emperor's soldiers: "Thank you, my brethren, for scraping off the old body and renewing my soul for new and eternal life." He performed many Wonders (Miracles) and brought many to the Faith. Even the Emperor's daughter, Gallina, repudiated the paganism of her father and became a Christian. Condemned to death and led to the place of execution, Saint Haralambos raised his arms to heaven and prayed for all men, that God would give them bodily health and salvation of soul, and that He would grant them the fruits of the earth in abundance: "Lord, thou knowest that men are flesh and blood; forgive them their sins and pour out thy blessing on all." After praying thus, the saintly elder gave his soul to God before the executioner had laid his sword to his neck. He suffered in 202 A.D. Galina took his body and buried it.

FOR CONSIDERATION

Many of the great infirmities to which man is subject have their origin, known or unknown, in the past. The origins of these great infirmities, such as madness for example, are none other than violations of the moral law of God. While Saint Haralambos was undergoing martyrdom, the royal torturer learned of his wonder-working power and ordered that a madman be brought before him, to find out if Haralalmbos could heal him. The devil had tormented this man for 35 years, driving him into the deserts and mountains and casting him into mires and abysses. When this madman drew near to Saint Haralambos, the demon smelled the fragrance of the holy man and cried out: 'I beg thee, O servant of God, do not torment me before the time, but order me and I will come out; and, if thou desirest, I will tell thee how I entered into the man.' And the Saint ordered him to speak. The demon said: 'This man desired to rob his neighbor, and thought within himself: 'If I don't first kill the man, I shall not be able to take all his goods.' So he went and killed his neighbor. Catching him in such an act, I entered into him and have been residing here these 35 years.' Hearing this, the Saint of God ordered the demon to come out of the man at once and leave him in peace, and the man was healed and became calm. (Source: The Prologue from Ochrid)

TODAY'S SACRED SCRIPTURAL READINGS ARE THE FOLLOWING:

Holy Epistle Lesson: II Timothy 2:1-10
Holy Gospel Lesson: St. John 15:17-27; 16:1-2

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

"A brother visiting Abba (Father) Poimen asked him: "My Father, how will I defend myself against the influence of thoughts?" Abba Poimen replied: "A person may have fire to his right and a vessel of water to his left. So, when the fire gains strength, let him take water from the vessel to extinguish it. By the fire, I mean the see of the Enemy (Satan), that is, a shameful thought; by water, I mean the capability of throwing ourselves before God and seeking His help."

(From the "Evergetinos")

Tuesday, February 10th Divine Services:

Orthros (Matins) at 9:00 a.m.
Divine Liturgy at 10:00 a.m.

Place: Saint Nektarios Chapel

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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 all. 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