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This is the Centurion who stood at the Cross of Christ and, seeing Him breathe his last, cried out "Truly this was the Son of God" (Matthew 27:54). From that day forth he was a believer, and was soon baptized. According to some accounts, he was one of the guard at the Tomb of Christ, and was one of those whom the Judaean leaders sought to bribe not…
 
He was born in Samosata in Syria (and is sometimes referred to as "Lucian of Samosata") of noble parents. In his youth he received an excellent education. Though a privileged life was open to him, he gave all his goods away to the poor and embraced a life of asceticism, supporting himself writing and tutoring. He produced an edition of the Old Test…
 
"Born in the village of Slatina in the Meglin region [of Bulgaria], of poor peasants who had three other daughters, St Zlata was a meek and devout girl, wise with Christ's wisdom and golden ('zlata' means 'gold') not only in name but also in her God-fearing heart. When Zlata went out one day to get water, some shameless Turks seized her and carried…
 
As a young man he became a monk in the Studite Monastery in Constantinople; later he bacame abbot of the Monastery of St Mamas, also in Constantinople. After a life of great asceticism, including many trials, criticisms and afflictions, he reposed in peace. (He reposed on March 12, but since this day always falls during the Great Fast, his feast is…
 
"Hesychast controversy" was then raging, and St Philotheos became one of the firmest and most effective supporters of St Gregory Palamas (November 14) in his defense of Orthodoxy against western-inspired attacks on the doctrines of uncreated Grace and the possibility of true union with God. It was St Philotheos who drafted the Hagiorite Tome, the m…
 
"Saint Andrew came of a family of devout, unlettered peasants. He obtained an education by going to church and, on the death of his parents, became a novice at the Monastery of Galich, in the diocese of Kostroma. The Abbot, who was remarkable for his wisdom, discerned Andrew's spiritual gifts and encouraged him to undertake the unusual and difficul…
 
He was born in 1417. Stephen and his younger brother Gregory were taken captive by the Turks and blinded on the day of Pascha 1441; several years later they were ransomed back to their father. After his father's death, Stephen, though blind, ruled Serbia for a short time, but was deposed in a coup and exiled to Albania. There he met St Angelina, wh…
 
"This Saint was a prominent actress of the city of Antioch, and a pagan, who lived a life of unrestrained prodigality and led many to perdition. Instructed and baptized by a certain bishop named Nonnus (November 10), she departed to the Mount of Olives near Jerusalem, where she lived as a recluse, feigning to be a eunuch called Pelagius. She lived …
 
"These holy and wonderful martyrs and heroes of the Christian faith were at first nobles at the court of the Emperor Maximian. The Emperor himself valued them greatly for their courage, wisdom and zeal, but, when he heard that these great nobles of his were Christians, his love for them turned to fury. And once, when there was a great offering of s…
 
She was born in 1865 on the island of Kimolos. Against her own wishes, her parents married her to a sailor, but he drowned soon after their wedding. Though she grieved for him, she also took his loss as a sign that she was to follow the path that she had always most deeply desired — so she entered monastic life, receiving the name Methodia. She the…
 
"Our holy Father Ammon's parents died in his childhood. He was brought up by an uncle, who made him marry when he was still very young. On the night of his wedding, as soon as he and his wife retired to the bridal chamber, Ammon took up the holy Scriptures and read the passage in the Epistle to the Corinthians where the Apostle speaks of the disadv…
 
He is mentioned in Acts 17:19-34. He was a learned Athenian, a member of the Athenian court on Mars Hill (Areos Pagos in Greek, from which the title 'Areopagite' comes). At the time of Christ's crucifixion, he was studying in Egypt and saw the sky darkened there for three hours when Christ breathed His last. He later married and had several childre…
 
St Andrew was bought as a slave by Theognostos,a wealthy citizen of Constantinople, during the reign of the Emperor Leo the Wise. Theognostos recognized Andrew's unusual ability and taught him to read and write. Despite this, Andrew, obeying a divine revelation, took up the ascesis of folly for Christ, behaving as a madman all day and secretly pray…
 
On October 1, 911, during the reign of Emperor Leo the Wise, an all-night vigil was being held at the Blachernae Church of the Mother of God in Constantinople, with many of the faithful crowding the church. St Andrew the Fool for Christ (commemorated tomorrow, October 2) was standing at the back of the church with his disciple Epiphanius. At around…
 
When Prince Vladimir, Equal to the Apostles (July 15), received holy Baptism, he sent an embassy to Constantinople asking that clergy be sent to enlighten the Russian land and to establish Christ's Church there. Patriarch Nicolas II Chrysoberges (December 16) appointed Michael, a wise and blameless bishop, to be Metropolitan of Russia. Saint Michae…
 
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