Sunday of the Holy Fathers of the Seventh Ecumenical Council

Twenty-FirstSunday After Petecost
October 17, 2021

Apostle LukeLuke 8:5-15 - "A sower went out to sow his seed; and as he sowed, some fell along the path, and was trodden under foot, and the birds of the air devoured it. And some fell on the rock; and as it grew up, it withered away, because it had no moisture. And some fell among thorns; and the thorns grew with it and choked it. And some fell into good soil and grew, and yielded a hundredfold." As he said this, he called out, "He who has ears to hear, let him hear."

And when his disciples asked him what this parable meant, he said, "To you it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of God; but for others they are in parables, so that seeing they may not see, and hearing they may not understand. Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God. The ones along the path are those who have heard; then the devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts, that they may not believe and be saved. And the ones on the rock are those who, when they hear the word, receive it with joy; but these have no root, they believe for a while and in time of temptation fall away. And as for what fell among the thorns, they are those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by the cares and riches and pleasures of life, and their fruit does not mature. And as for that in the good soil, they are those who, hearing the word, hold it fast in an honest and good heart, and bring forth fruit with patience. (RSV)

How deeply is the Lord rooted in you? – This good seed is worthy of admiration. Rich and well-productive land brings froth fruit a hundredfold. They say that the best soils sometimes under cultivation produce a hundredfold, so this is a mark of every fertile and productive spot. One of the holy prophets said from the mouth of God, “And all nations shall congratulate you because you are a desirable land.” (Mal 3:12) When the divine word falls upon a pure mind skillful in cleansing itself from things hurtful, it fixes its root deeply and shoots up like an ear of corn. It brings its fruit to perfection being strong in blade and beautifully flowered. (St. Cyril of Alexandria)

Readings:

- Vespers: Genesis 14:14-20, Deuteronomy 1:8-11, 15-17, Deuteronomy 10:14-21
- Matins:John 21:1-14 (Gospel 10)
- Liturgy: Galatians 2:16-20, Luke 8:5-15 (21st Sun) and Hebrews 13:7-16, John 17:1-13 (Council Fathers)

The Icon is of the Apostle Luke, whose day in the calendar is October 18th.


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Teachings of Christ

“Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I have not come to call the righteous but sinners to repentance.” (Luke 5:31-32 ESV)

Feasts & Fasts

November
8 Synaxis of the Archangel Michael and the Other Bodiless Powers
11 Veterans' Day (USA), Remembrance Day (Canada)
15 Nativity Fast Begins (Philip's Fast also known as Advent)
21 The Entry of the Most Holy Mother of God into the Temple
25 Thanksgiving Day (USA)

December
6 St Nicholas the Wonderworker and Archbishop of Myra in Lycia
9 (8) The Conception of the Most Holy Mother of God by the Righteous Anna
12 Our Lady of Guadalupe
12 Second Sunday Before Christmas (Holy Forefathers)
19 Sunday Before Christmas (Holy Fathers)
24 Christmas Eve
25 The Nativity of our Lord God and Savior, Jesus Christ
26 Synaxis of the Most Holy Mother of God, Sunday after Christmas: Commemoration of the Holy Righteous David the King, Joseph the Betrothed, and James the Brother of the Lord
27 First-Martyr and Archdeacon Stephen
28 20,000 Martyrs of Nicomedia
29 14,000 Infants (the Holy Innocents) Slain by Herod at Bethlehem

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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Entrance of the Mother of God into the Temple

Today is the prelude of the goodwill of God * and the heralding of the salvation of mankind; * the Virgin appears clearly in the temple of God * and foretells Christ to all. * Let us also with a mighty voice cry out to her: * “Rejoice, O Fulfillment of the Creator’s divine plan.” (Troparion - Tone 4)

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

The most pure Temple of the Savior, * the most precious Bridal-Chamber and Virgin, the sacred Treasury of the glory of God, * is brought today into the house of the Lord, * bringing with her the grace that is in the Divine Spirit. * The angels of God praise her in song: * “She is the heavenly tabernacle.” (Kontakion - Tone 4)

(November 21st)

Random Proverb

"Blessed is the one who finds wisdom, and the one who gets understanding, for the gain from her is better than gain from silver and her profit better than gold." (Proverbs 3:13,14 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

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

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

Adam, before the fall ... participated in ... divine illumination and resplendence, and because he was truly clothed in a garment of glory he was not naked, nor was he unseemly by reason of his nakedness. He was far more richly adorned than those who now deck themselves out with diadems of gold and brightly sparkling jewels. St. Paul calls this divine illumination and grace our celestial dwelling when he says, 'For this we sigh, yearning to be clothed in our heavenly habitation, since clothed we will not be found naked' (2 Cor. 5:2).

St. Gregory Palamas (Topics of Natural and Theological Science no. 67, The Philokalia Vol. 4 edited by Palmer, Sherrard and Ware; Faber and Faber pg. 377)