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Devotional Readings for the Week of July 4th, 2010

Devotional Readings for the Week of July 4th, 2010 


Your browser may not support display of this image.  St. Andrew the Hymnographer Your browser may not support display of this image. St. Andrei Rublev 

Isaiah 66:10-14:  

      Our community, the communion by which we are joined to one another, springs from God. (Abba Horsiesios) 

      The soul should remain closed, without cares or afflictions, for He Who entered the room of His disciples bodily, while the doors were closed, and gave them peace, will enter the soul spiritually, once it has closed the doors of its intellect, memory and will to all apprehensions. He will fill them with peace, descending on them like a river of peace. In this peace He will remove all misgivings, suspicions, disturbances and darknesses that made the soul fear it had gone astray. The soul should persevere in prayer and should hope in the midst of nakedness and emptiness, for its blessings will not be long in coming. (St. John of the Cross)  

Galatians 6:14-18: 

      The Cross of Christ is every voluntary assumption of the labors, pains and reproaches by which the world is crucified to man, that is, the things of the world held in contempt by a man, and he to the world, that is, be despised and afflicted by worldly men. (Geert Grote) 

      There is one antidote for evil passions: the purification of our souls which takes place through the mystery of godliness. The chief act of faith in this mystery is to look to Him Who suffered the Passion for us. The Cross is the Passion, so that whoever looks to it is not harmed by the poison of desire. To look to the Cross means to render one's whole life dead and crucified to the world, unmoved by evil. (St. Gregory of Nyssa) 

Luke 10:1-20: 

      When St. Francis went out among men, he conformed himself to his hosts in the food he ate because of the Gospel text. But when he returned home, he kept strictly his sparse and rigid abstinence. Thus he was austere toward himself but considerate toward his neighbor. Making himself obedient to the Gospel of Christ in everything, he gave an edifying example not only when he abstained but also when he ate. (St. Bonaventure) 

      Hell is and consists of self-will. If there would be no self-will there would be no hell and no devil. When we read that the devil, Lucifer, fell from heaven and turned away from God, it means only that he was anxious to maintain his own self-will and that he did not wish to tune his will to the eternal Will. (Theologia Germanica) 

      Do not become proud when you are honored by those who are greater than yourself because of your Teacher. Even if there are many who obey you on account of His name, rejoice only if your name is written in the heaven of humility. Even if you see the demons tremble at your very shadow, do not ascribe it to yourself but only to the intercession of your Father. If you do that, they will fear you the more! (St. Symeon the New Theologian) 


Your browser may not support display of this image. St. Athanasius of Mt. Athos Your browser may not support display of this image. St. Gwen  

Hosea 2:16-22: 

      Since the soul longs so ardently for union with the Bridegroom and is aware that she finds no remedy in any creature, she turns to speak in faith, as to that which most vividly sheds light concerning her beloved, and takes it as a means toward this union. Indeed, there is no other means by which one reaches true union and spiritual espousal with God, as Hosea says: "I will espouse you to Me in faith." (St. John of the Cross) 

      The believing soul by means of the pledge of its faith is free in Christ, its Bridegroom. So He takes to Himself a glorious bride, washing her with the word of life, that is, by faith in the Word of life, righteousness and salvation. In this way He marries her in faith, steadfast love and in mercies, righteousness and justice, as Hosea says. (Martin Luther) 

Matthew 9:18-26: 

      The accursed one does not allow the eye of the heart to see the Lord or His saints. He darkens our heart in every way. He scatters faith, oppressing, burning and darkening us inwardly. We must look upon all such actions as illusions and falsehood, and break through this imaginary wall to the Lord, or to His Holy Mother, or His saints. As soon as you break through this wall you will be immediately saved. "Your faith has made you whole" (Mt. 9:22). (St. John of Kronstadt) 

      The woman with hemorrhages said very softly to herself, "If I only touch the hem of his robe I shall be healed." The secret she kept to herself. It was the secret of faith which saved her both for time and eternity. This secret you can have for yourself also when you forthrightly profess the faith, and when you lie weak on your sick-bed and cannot move a limb, when you cannot even move your tongue, you can still have this secret within you. (Soren Kierkegaard)


Your browser may not support display of this image. St. Sisoes the Great Your browser may not support display of this image. St. Monenna  

Hosea 8:4-13: 

      Anyone who disobeys God will perish through their own fault, and the crime, or the cause of destruction, cannot not be transferred to any other. (John Calvin) 

      Those reign of themselves, and not by the Will of the Supreme Ruler, who, supported by no virtues, and in no way divinely called, but inflamed by their own desire, seize rather than attain supreme rule. (St. Gregory the Great) 

Matthew 9:32-38: 

      The Lord urges you to follow Him. Go confidently with Him for you will derive the greatest benefit if you look to Him alone. (St. Symeon the New Theologian) 

      It is hardly surprising that so few are granted to see things with the pitying eyes of Jesus, for only those who share the love of His heart have been given eyes to see. And only they can enter the harvest field. (Dietrich Bonhoeffer) 


Your browser may not support display of this image. St. Cyriaca, Virgin-Martyr  

Hosea 10:1-12: 

      The Lord forbears in inflicting punishments. He does not execute sinners with the utmost rigor; for as soon as he lays on a few stripes, he withholds his hand. But how do they act who are thus moderately chastised? As soon as they can recruit their spirits, they are carried away by a more headstrong inclination, and grow insolent against God. We see this evil prevalent in the world even in our day, as it has been in all ages. (John Calvin) 

      The Spirit speaks through the prophet: "Sow for yourselves righteousness," where the pledge of salvation is revealed. Then reap the hope of life where the vital force of the Spirit is received. (St. Bernard of Clairvaux) 

Matthew 10:1-7: 

      A kind and merciful Lord and Master does not envy His servants and disciples a share in His powers. As He had cured every sickness and disease, He imparted the same power to His Apostles. But there is a wide difference between having and imparting, between giving and receiving. Whatever He does He does with the power of a master, whatever they do it is with confession of their own weakness. (St. Jerome) 

      All the activity of the disciples is subject to the clear precept of their Lord. They are not left free to choose their own methods or adopt their own conception of their task. Their work is to be Christ-work, and therefore they are absolutely dependent on the will of Jesus. Happy are they whose duty is fixed by such a precept, and who are therefore free from the tyranny of their own ideas and calculations. (Dietrich Bonhoeffer) 


Your browser may not support display of this image. St. Procopios, Great-Martyr Your browser may not support display of this image. St. Kilian  

Hosea 11:1-9: 

      The Lord said, "I will draw them to Me by the bonds of My love." Therefore, my brothers, rejoice, be prepared and hold to the confession of hope until the end. (St. Pachomius) 

      God intended in this place (Hos. 11:9) to leave to the godly some hope of salvation. He adds what may confirm this hope; for we know that when God denounces wrath, with what difficulty trembling consciences are restored to hope. Ungodly men laugh to scorn all threatening; but those in whom there is any seed of piety dread the vengeance of God. (John Calvin) 

Matthew 10:7-15: 

      One day when St. Francis was devoutly hearing a Mass of the Apostles, the Gospel was read in which Christ sends forth His disciples to preach and explains to them the way of life according to the Gospel: that they "should not keep gold or silver or money in their belts, nor have a wallet for their journey, nor two tunics, nor shoes, nor staff". When he heard this, he grasped its meaning and committed it to memory. This lover of apostolic poverty was then filled with an indescribable joy and said: "This is what I want. This is what I long for with all my heart." He immediately took off his shoes from his feet, put aside his staff, cast away his wallet and money as if accursed, was content with one tunic and exchanged his leather belt for a rope. He directed all his heart's desire to carry out what he had heard and to conform in every way to the rule of right living given to the apostles. (St. Bonaventure) 

      As we have received love freely and generously from God's goodness, so ought we to give to everyone who humbly asks, lovingly and freely, and with a generous heart, moved by love for God's honor and the salvation of souls. (St. Catherine of Siena) 


Your browser may not support display of this image. St. Pancratius, Bishop of Tauromina, Martyr Your browser may not support display of this image. St. Urith  

Hosea 14:2-10: 

      God becomes a Father to us, and regards us as his children, even when He abolishes our sins, and also when he freely admits us to the enjoyment of his love. This truth ought to be carefully observed; for the world ever imagines that they come to God and bring something by which they can turn or incline him to love them. Nothing can be more inimical to our salvation than this vain fancy. (John Calvin) 

      All who are destitute of strength in themselves, and destitute of help from others; all who are sensible of their own helpless condition, look for it from God, Who has power, mercy, and wisdom to help. (John Wesley) 

Matthew 10:16-23: 

      No one knows how to say anything about what the true end of our life is. Yet, he who would like to know may walk the right path toward it, namely Christ's life. (Theologia Germanica) 

      "He who endures to the end will be saved." Not only will he be saved, but he will receive help, at first without perceiving it; later he will perceive it, and soon he will receive it in the illumination that comes from Almighty God. (St. Symeon the New Theologian) 


Isaiah 1:10-17: 

      All our struggles, fasts, deprivations and labors which are without the prior cleansing of the heart, which are without the striving of the soul and mind toward the one God, which are not complete, not perfect, but done with a divided heart – not only can these not be pleasing to God, but they are even repulsive to Him. (Abbess Thaisia) 

      Let us offer ourselves as sacrificial gifts and holocausts to the Lord, who has no desire for senseless animals. (St. Dorotheos of Gaza) 

Matthew 10:24-33: 

      We should not grumble with faintheartedness about food and drink. (St. Symeon the New Theologian) 

      Away with skeptics and academics from the company of us Christians. Let us have men who will assert; men twice as inflexible as true Stoics. Christ says, "Whoever confesses Me before men, him will I confess before My Father." (Martin Luther) 
 Via Brother Alexandros

Released by Primus Pilus
Legio Christi-Ecclesia Militans
"Let us therefore follow after the things which make for peace, and things wherewith one may edify another" [St. Paul's Epistle to the Romans 14:19]


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