What Is the Mark of the True Christian?

by St. Anastasius the Sinaite

St. Anastasius was a priest and abbot of Mt. Sinai. His zeal for true faith led him to travel through Egypt, Arabia, and Syria to combat the errors of the Acephalites and Eutychians. His writings show not only a thorough command of Holy Scripture and a wide knowledge of the writing of the Church Fathers and other Christian writers, but also classical erudition and a solid grounding in Aristotelian philosophy. Of his prolific output the most important works are Guide Against the Acephalites and Answers to Questions. It is from the latter that the present passage is translated. St. Anastasius died in great old age in 686. [1] Διαβάστε τη συνέχεια του άρθρου »

THE VENERABLE FEMALE MACRINA (JULY 19)

Macrina_the_YoungerMacrina was the eldest sister of St. Basil the Great and St. Gregory of Nyssa. As a young virgin, Macrina was bethrothed to a nobleman. When her betrothed died, Macrina vowed never to enter into marriage saying: «It is not right for a maiden once betrothed to a young man to seek another: according to the law of nature there must be only one marriage as there is but one birth and one death.» She further justified this by her faith in the resurrection considering her bridegroom, not dead but alive in God. «It is a sin and a shame,» says Macrina, «for a wife not to safeguard her faithfulness when her husband travels to a distant land.» After this, together with her mother, Emilia, she received the monastic tonsure in a convent, where they lived a life of asceticism with other nuns. They lived from the labors of their hands devoting a greater part of their time to godly thoughts, prayer and the constant uplifting of their minds to God. In time her mother died and, afterward her brother Basil. Nine months after the death of St. Basil, Gregory came to visit with his sister and found her on her death bed. Before her death, Macrina lifted up her prayers to God: «You, O Lord, Who gives rest to our bodies in the sleep of death for a time, will again awaken them [the bodies] at the last trump. Forgive me and when my soul divests itself of its bodily attire and presents itself before You, pure and without sin, grant that it may be as incense before You.» After that she traced the sign of the cross on the forehead, eyes, face and on her heart and gave up her soul. She found rest in the Lord in the year 379 A.D.

Saint Nikolai Velimirovch , The Prologue from Ohrid

The Holy Angels

SynaxisAngels

The following is from the Minea of St Dimitry of Rostov and appeared in the November/December 1968 issue of Orthodox Life. This is taken from a reprint included in the booklet _Orthodox Teachings on the Holy Angels_ compiled by Fr Demetrius Serfes (It may still be available through St John of Kronstadt Press)

The nine orders of the angels are divided into three heirarchies, each of which is divided into three orders: the highest, the intermediate, the lower.

The first hierarch, the highest and closest to the Most Holy Trinity, consists of the SERAPHIM, CHERUBIM, and THRONES.

The God-loving six-winged SERAPHIM stand closer than all before their Creator and Maker, as the prophet Isaiah saw, saying: «And the seraphim stood around Him, each having six wings» (Isaiah 6:2). They ar fire-like since they stand before That One of Whom it is written: «For our God is a consuming fire.» (Heb 12:29); «His throne was a flame of fire» (Dan 7:9); «the appearance of the Lord was like a blazing fire» (Ex 24:17). Standing before such glory, the seraphim are fire-like, as it said: «Who maketh his angels spirits; his ministers a flaming fire» (Ps 103:4). They are aflame with love for God and kindle others to such love, as i shown by their very name, for «seraphim» in the Hebrew language means: «flaming». Διαβάστε τη συνέχεια του άρθρου »