Great and Holy Wednesday

April 17, 2017

Bridegroom ChristMatthew 26:6-16 - Now when Jesus was at Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, a woman came up to him with an alabaster flask of very expensive ointment, and she poured it on his head as he reclined at table. And when the disciples saw it, they were indignant, saying, "Why this waste? For this could have been sold for a large sum and given to the poor." But Jesus, aware of this, said to them, "Why do you trouble the woman? For she has done a beautiful thing to me. For you always have the poor with you, but you will not always have me. In pouring this ointment on my body, she has done it to prepare me for burial. Truly, I say to you, wherever this gospel is proclaimed in the whole world, what she has done will also be told in memory of her."

Then one of the twelve, whose name was Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests and said, "What will you give me if I deliver him over to you?" And they paid him thirty pieces of silver. And from that moment he sought an opportunity to betray him. (ESV)

Are You free? - The woman acknowledges Jesus as Lord and anoints Him to prepare Him for burial. Judas seeks to betray the Master. Which one was set free? Which one condemned himself? What about us? Do our daily lives embrace Christ and choose the forgiveness He offers? Or do we betray Christ and crucify Him?

Today we also continue the readings from the Prophecy of Ezekiel (the Call of the Prophet), Exodus (the Passion, Death and Resurrection of our Lord prefigured in the journey of the Israelites from slavery in Egypt into the Promised Land) and Job (his tenacious faith in God).

This evening many parishes celebrate the Sacrament of Holy Anointing, offered on Great and Holy Wednesday for the healing of soul and body and for the forgiveness of sins.

Scripture

  • Wednesday - Ezekiel 2:3-3:3, Exodus 2:11-22, Job 2:1-10, Matthew 26:6-16

The icon is a detail of the Extreme Humility of Christ.


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Teachings of Christ

“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.” (Matthew 22:37-40 ESV)

Scripture

July 14, 2019
Fifth Sunday After Pentecost
- Matins: Luke 24:12-35 (Gospel 5)
- Liturgy: Romans 10:1-10, Matthew 8:28-9:1

Fathers of the First Six Ecumenical Councils
- Vespers: Genesis 17:15-17, 19; 18:11-14; 21:1-7, Judges 13:2-8, 13-14, Composite 19 (EOT)
- Liturgy: Hebrews 13:7-16, John 17:1-12

Sixth Week After Pentecost
- Monday: Romans 16:17-24, Matthew 13:10-23
- Tuesday: 1 Corinthians 1:1-9, Matthew 13:24-30
- Wednesday: 1 Corinthians 2:9-3:8, Matthew 13:31-36
- Thursday: 1 Corinthians 3:18-23, Matthew 13:36-43
- Friday: 1 Corinthians 4:5-8, Matthew 13:44-54
- Saturday: Romans 9:1-5, Matthew 9:18-26

July 20, 2019
Holy Prophet Elias
- Vespers: 1) 1[3] Kings 17:1-23, 2) 1[3] Kings 18:1, 17, 41, 42, 45-46, 19:1-16, 3) 1[3] Kings 19:19-21
- Matins: Luke 4:22-30
- Divine Liturgy: James 5:10-20, Luke 4:22-30

July 21, 2019
Sixth Sunday After Pentecost
- Matins: Luke 24:36-53 (Gospel 6)
- Liturgy: Romans 12:6-14, Matthew 9:1-8

Seventh Week After Pentecost
- Monday: 1 Corinthians 5:9-6:11, Matthew 13:54-58
- Tuesday: 1 Corinthians 6:20-7:12, Matthew 14:1-13
- Wednesday: 1 Corinthians 7:12-24, Matthew 14:35-15:11
- Thursday: 1 Corinthians 7:24-35, Matthew 15:12-21
- Friday: 1 Corinthians 7:35-8:7, Matthew 15:29-31
- Saturday: Romans 12:1-3, Matthew 10:37-11:1

July 28, 2019
Seventh Sunday After Pentecost
- Matins: John 20:1-10 (Gospel 7)
- Liturgy: Romans 15:1-7, Matthew 9:27-35

Feasts & Fasts

July
1 Canada Day (Canada)
4 Independence Day (USA)
14 Sunday of the Holy Fathers of the First Six Ecumenical Councils
20 Holy, Glorious Prophet Elijah

August
1-14 Dormition Fast
6 Transfiguration of Our Lord, God and Savior, Jesus Christ
15 The Dormition of our Most Holy Lady, the Mother of God and Ever-Virgin Mary
29 Beheading of St. John the Baptist

Please pray!

"They were stoned, they were sawn in two, they were killed with the sword...." (Hebrews 11:37a)

Please lift up in prayer all those who are persecuted and deprived of liberty, everywhere in the world. Please especially remember the peoples of Iraq, Syria, Egypt, Niger - the whole Middle East and Africa - who are literal martyrs for Christ. Also the peoples of Ukraine. They are our brothers, for all are one in Christ.

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Pentecost

Blessed are You, O Christ our God, * Who has shown the fishermen to be all wise, * by sending down to them the Holy Spirit, * and through them You have caught the whole world in Your net. * O Lover of Mankind, glory to You. (Troparion - Tone 8)

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever, and to the ages of ages. Amen.

When the Most High descended, confusing tongues, * He divided the nations; * but when He distributed the tongues of fire, * He called all to unity; * and, with one voice, * we glorify the Most Holy Spirit. (Kontakion - Tone 8)

Random Proverb

For the Lord gives wisdom; from his mouth come knowledge and understanding. (Proverbs 2:6 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

Do all in your power not to fall, for the strong athlete should not fall. But if you do fall, get up again at once and continue the contest. Even if you fall a thousand times because of the withdrawal of God's grace, rise up again each time, and keep on doing this until the day of your death. For it is written, 'If a righteous man falls down seven times' - that is, repeatedly throughout his life - 'seven times shall he rise again' [Prov. 24:16].

John of Karpathos