St. Sophronius, patriarch of Jerusalem (638). Hieromartyr Pionius, priest of Smyrna, and those with him: Asclepiades, Macedonia, Linus, and Sabina (250). Translation to Constantinople of the relics of Martyr Epimachus of Pelusium (250). St. George, abbot of Sinai (7th c.), brother of St. John Climacus. St. Oengus (Angus) the Culdee, bishop, of Clonenagh (Ireland) (824). Hieromartyr Eulogius, metropolitan of Cordoba (859). St. George the New, wonderworker of Constantinople (ca. 970). St. Theodora, queen of Arta, wife of Despot Michael II of Epirus (ca. 1275). St. Sophronius, recluse of the Kiev Caves (13th c.). St. Euthymius, archbishop of Novgorod (1458). St. Sophronius, bishop of Vratsa (Bulgaria) (1813). St. Alexis of Goloseyevsky Skete, Kiev Caves (1917). New Hiero-confessor Patrick (Petrov), hieromonk of Valaam (1933). (Gr. Cal.: Hieromartyrs Trophimus and Thalus, priests, of Laodicea .)
Slaying of Emperor Paul I of Russia (1801).
First Sunday of Great Lent
Sunday of Orthodoxy
Matins: (IX) John 20:19-31
Liturgy of St. Basil: Heb. 11:24-
26, 32-12:2; John 1:43-51
From the Synaxarion: “On this day
the Church of Christ celebrates the
restoration of the holy and honorable
icons, which occurred through
the holy and most blessed rulers Michael
and Theodora, and St. Methodius,
patriarch of Constantinople.”
“Cyprus” Icon of the Most Holy
Theotokos of Stromynsk (Moscow)
Wine and oil allowed
Thoughts for Each Day of the Year
According to the Daily Church Readings from the Word of God
By St. Theophan the Recluse
The First Sunday of Lent. [Heb. 11:24–26,
32–12:2; John 1:43–51]
The Sunday of Orthodoxy.
Do not forget the right word
which you spoke to God, renewing your testament with
Him which you broke through your negligence. Remember
how and why you broke it and try to avoid being
unfaithful again. Pretty words are not glorious;
faithfulness is glorious. Is it not glorious to have a
testament with a king? How much more glorious is it to
have a testament with the King of kings! But this glory
becomes your disgrace if you are not faithful to this
testament. How many great people have been glorified
since the beginning of the world! And all of them have
been glorified for their faithfulness, in which they
stood firm, regardless of great misfortunes and sorrows
as a result of this faithfulness. They had trial of
cruel mockings and scourgings, yea, moreover of bonds
and imprisonment: They were stoned, they were sawn
asunder, were tempted, were slain with the sword: they
wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins; being
destitute, afflicted, tormented; Of whom the world was
not worthy: they wandered in deserts, and in mountains,
and in dens and caves of the earth…. Wherefore,
seeing we are compassed about with so great a cloud of
witnesses, let us run with patience the race that is
set before us, looking unto Jesus the author and
finisher of our faith (Heb. 11:36–38;
The first Sunday of Great Lent is called “The
Sunday of Orthodoxy,” and celebrates the
restoration of the veneration of Icons and the victory
of Orthodoxy over the Iconoclast heresy.
“The right word” is a reference to the
meaning of the word “Orthodox” in Russian,
which is literally “rightly glorifying.”
SAINT THEOPHAN THE RECLUSE (1815–1894) was one of the most prolific and beloved spiritual writers of nineteenth-century Russia. His works, which comprise over twenty volumes, include such classics as The Path to Salvation and A Commentary on Psalm 118, as well as many volumes of letters. Although he lived the last twenty-eight years of his life as a hermit, his impact on his homeland was immense. His articles appeared in the popular spiritual journals of his time, his books were in great demand, and he personally replied to an average of thirty letters daily.
In the present book, Thoughts for Each Day of the Year, St. Theophan takes us through the yearly cycle of Gospel and Epistle readings, humbly and reverently offering us brief but powerful daily meditations on the word of God. He also addresses the problems of his day—lack of faith, coldness of heart, trust in the rational mind rather than in the revealed Truth of God—which are problems of our day as well.
Contemplating the sacred texts together with St. Theophan, the reader will learn to penetrate more deeply into Holy Scripture, and will receive answers to many dogmatic, moral, and spiritual questions which touch upon our salvation. Thoughts for Each Day of the Year can help us to more closely connect our lives with the life of Christ in His Holy Church, and to gain a better knowledge of how to fulfill His commandments. By reading St. Theophan's daily exhortations and taking them to heart, one can be changed by the grace-filled power of our Savior, in accordance with the teaching of the Apostle Paul: Be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God (Rom. 11:2).
Thoughts for Each Day of the Year is published by St. Herman of Alaska Brotherhood and Sretensky Monastery.
It is available at stherman.com/Catalog/Spiritual_Counsels/Daily_Thoughts_Book.html.
For further information on the Saint Herman Calendar contact St. Herman Press:
St. Herman Press, P.O. Box 70, Platina, CA 96076