Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Glory to Jesus Christ! Glory to Him forever!
The Morning Offering
Tuesday, May 5 / April 22 (Church Calendar)
Christ is Risen! Truly He is Risen!

Saints of the Day:

April 22 / May 5. St. Theodore the Sykeote, Bishop of Anastasiopolis. St. Vitalis, monk of Gaza. Apostles Nathaniel, Luke, and Clement. Translation of the Relics of St. Vsevolod (in holy baptism Gabriel), prince of Pskov. Martyr Epipodius of Lyons. (Greek Calendar Martyr Nearchus.) Repose of Blessed Fool-for-Christ Athanasius Andreyevich of Orel (1967).

Memory Eternal:

It is with great sadness that we announce the falling asleep of the Monk Spiridon, beloved member of our holy brotherhood. A good friend of the monastery for many years, Father Spiridon had been making yearly pilgrimages from his home in Lancaster, Lancshire, England. Father Spiridon (Stuart) was born on January 8, 1932, and entered into eternal rest on Sunday, May 3rd, at the age of 77. He was tonsured a monk on December 16, 2007, in Holy Protection Monastery Church, here on Vashon Island. We'd spend the last year trying to get permission to bring him to the United States, so he could live out his life among his "American cousins".

Before becoming Orthodox, Spiridon had been Catholic, and was in fact in the final weeks of his novitiate at Ampleforth Abbey when he felt that he could no longer participate in those forms of worship. In telling me his story, he shared that the last straw for him was the casual lack of reverence that was common, even at the monastery, in preparing the bread and wine for the Mass. He saw this in comparison to the care and devotion that goes on, unseen, in Orthodox churches, (at the proskomedi), and felt that this was the way that the Eucharist ought to be treated and that this was the honour with which creation should hold its Creator. He left before taking final vows.

Yet he retained the link to monasticism, and kept a correspondence with Blessed Seraphim of Platina, for whom he had great love and respect.

Baptized into the Orthodox Church at Holy Trinity Monastery, in Jordanville, New York, he regularly made pilgrimages to Holy Trinity Monastery, Holy Cross Hermitage in West Virginia, and All-Merciful Saviour Monastery. Following the move by the monks of Saint Edward the Martyr Monastery in Brookwood, England, who left ROCOR at the time of the Unification with the Moscow Patriarchate, Spiridon decided to seek monastic tonsure in the Vashon Island monastery.

The Paschal Zadostoinik
The Angel cried unto the lady, full of grace: 'O pure Virgin, rejoice! and again I say, rejoice, for thy Son is risen from the grave on the third day. And He hath raised all the dead.' O ye people, be joyful! Shine, shine, O new Jerusalem! for the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee. Dance, now, dance and be glad, O Sion! Do thou exult, O pure Theotokos, in the Resurrection of thy Son!

Video of the Day:

The Paschal Song: Christ is Risen! Indeed He is Risen!

Scripture Readings for the Day:

Acts 8:5-17

5 Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria and preached Christ to them. 6 And the multitudes with one accord heeded the things spoken by Philip, hearing and seeing the miracles which he did. 7 For unclean spirits, crying with a loud voice, came out of many who were possessed; and many who were paralyzed and lame were healed. 8 And there was great joy in that city.
The Sorcerer's Profession of Faith
9 But there was a certain man called Simon, who previously practiced sorcery in the city and astonished the people of Samaria, claiming that he was someone great, 10 to whom they all gave heed, from the least to the greatest, saying, "This man is the great power of God." 11 And they heeded him because he had astonished them with his sorceries for a long time. 12 But when they believed Philip as he preached the things concerning the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, both men and women were baptized. 13 Then Simon himself also believed; and when he was baptized he continued with Philip, and was amazed, seeing the miracles and signs which were done.
The Sorcerer's Sin
14 Now when the apostles who were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent Peter and John to them, 15 who, when they had come down, prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit. 16 For as yet He had fallen upon none of them. They had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 17 Then they laid hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit.

John 6:27-33

27 Do not labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to everlasting life, which the Son of Man will give you, because God the Father has set His seal on Him."
28 Then they said to Him, "What shall we do, that we may work the works of God?"
29 Jesus answered and said to them, "This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He sent."
30 Therefore they said to Him, "What sign will You perform then, that we may see it and believe You? What work will You do? 31 Our fathers ate the manna in the desert; as it is written, 'He gave them bread from heaven to eat.'"
32 Then Jesus said to them, "Most assuredly, I say to you, Moses did not give you the bread from heaven, but My Father gives you the true bread from heaven. 33 For the bread of God is He who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world."

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