Dedication of the Church of St. George the Great Martyr

St. George The Great Martyr

Wednesday December 9, 2020 / November 26, 2020

27th Week after Pentecost. Tone one.
Nativity (St. Philip’s Fast). Food with Oil

Venerable Alypius the Stylite of Adrianopolis (640). Dedication of the Church of St. George at Kiev (1051). Repose of St. Innocent, first bishop of Irkutsk (1731). New Hieromartyrs Nicholas, John, Gregory and Nazarius, Basil, Basil, Ilia, Basil, Daniel, Michael priests, New Hieromartyr Tikhon (1937). New Hieromartyr Peter (after 1937). Venerable James the Solitary of Syria (457). Venerable Stylianos of Paphlagonia, monk (5th – 6th c.) (Greek).

The Scripture Readings

1 Timothy 5:22-6:11
Luke 18:15-17, 26-30

The Consecration of the Church of the GreatMartyr George at Kiev

Commemorated on November 26

      The Consecration of the Church of the GreatMartyr George at Kiev: Beginning with Equal-to-the-Apostles Prince Vladimir (Comm. 15 July), there existed the pious custom among Russian princes to build a church in honour of their patron saint. Thus, Equal-to-the-Apostles Vladimir, in Baptism Vasilii (Basil) built at Kiev and also Vyshgorod temples in the name of Sainted Basil the Great (Comm. 1 and 30 January). Prince Izyaslav I (1054-1068), in Baptism Dimitrii, built at Kiev a temple and monastery in the name of the holy GreatMartyr Demetrios (Comm. 26 October). Prince Yaroslav the Wise (1019-1054), in holy Baptism Georgii, made the beginnings of a church and men’s monastery in honour of his patron saint – the GreatMartyr George (Comm. 23 April), and likewise he built a church in the name of the GreatMartyress Irene (Comm. 5 May), the patron saint of his wife. The temple in honour of the GreatMartyr George was consecrated by Saint Ilarion, Metropolitan of Kiev (Comm. 21 October), and there was established a yearly commemoration in honour of this event.

© 1996-2001 by translator Fr. S. Janos.

Prophet Obediah-Advi

Troparion — Tone 2

You were bound for good deeds, O martyr of Christ: George;by faith you conquered the torturer’s godlessness.You were offered as a sacrifice pleasing to God;thus you received the crown of victory.Through your intercessions, forgiveness of sins is granted to all.

Kontakion — Tone 1

God raised you as his own gardener, O George,for you have gathered for yourself the sheaves of virtue.Having sown in tears, you now reap with joy;you shed your blood in combat and won Christ as your crown.Through your intercessions, forgiveness of sins is granted to all.

HYMN OF PRAISE

THE VENERABLE ALYPIUS THE STYLITE

Loosed of all things, loosed from the world:
From life’s concerns and from the oppression of the passions.
Complete devotion to prayer and divine contemplation
Brought glory to St. Alypius.

On a pillar tall, he raised himself:
The farther from earth, the closer to God!
Complete devotion to prayer and divine contemplation
Brought glory to St. Alypius.

Let thunders resound, they will not strike,
The Lord directs and moves the lightning.
Utter devotion to prayer and divine contemplation
Brought glory to St. Alypius.

In prayer, he shone as the bright sun,
And his name, through the centuries, distinctly remains.
His meditations on God have made him immortal:
Wondrous Alypius the God-pleaser.

Now in the heavens a great pillar shines,
Which is the radiant soul of St. Alypius.
And now he is wholly devoted to prayer for us–
Alypius the Stylite, both yesterday and today.

Even now, evil spirits flee him,
And we rejoice in St. Alypius.


REFLECTION

Many learned pagans entered the Church of Christ and were baptized precisely because the Church preached immortal life as a proven fact and not as a speculation of human reason. St. Clement of Rome had studied all of Greek philosophy, yet his soul remained unsatisfied and empty. As a young man of twenty-four, he desired to know with all his soul if there were another, better life than this. Philosophy gave him only the thoughts of various men, but no real proof. He mourned for his lost parents and brothers and was tormented constantly by not knowing if he would be able to see them in some other life. The All-seeing God directed his footsteps and he met a man who spoke to him of Christians, and of their belief in life beyond the grave. This so stirred the young Clement that he immediately moved from Rome to Judea so that there, in the cradle of the Christian Faith itself, he might come to uncontestable knowledge regarding life beyond the grave. When he heard the preaching of the Apostle Peter, based entirely on Christ’s Resurrection from the dead, Clement despised the conjectures of philosophy and sincerely adopted the Christian Faith. He was baptized, and dedicated himself totally to the service of the Church of God. As it was then, so it is today–he who has a strong faith in the resurrected Christ, and a clear knowledge of life beyond death and judgment, easily decides to pay the price for entry into that life; that is, the fulfilling of all God’s commandments.

CONTEMPLATION

Contemplate the wondrous creation of the world (Genesis 2):

1. How the Lord God created man, and woman from man;

2. How Adam and Eve were naked and were not ashamed, for they did not yet know sin.

HOMILY

on the purpose of the apportionment of gifts, ministries and callings

… For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ (Ephesians 4:12).

This is why the Holy Spirit apportioned the gifts, and made some apostles, others prophets, others evangelists, and others pastors and teachers: that the saints, the faithful Christians, become perfected. As in a household, honor and service are apportioned, and there is honor and service appropriate to parents, honor and service appropriate to adult sons and daughters, and honor and service appropriate to young children and servants–yet all serve together for the benefit of one another; so it is in God’s house, the Holy Church: with every honor is a corresponding service, and the services of each are beneficial to all. Thus the body of Christ, God’s Holy Church, is gradually and wisely built. Each of the faithful, assisted by the others, grows and develops as a member of this body; grows and develops in holiness and purity, and in a corresponding measure and proportion to the whole great body. The whole body, from the beginning to the end of time–especially from the Incarnation of God the Word on earth until the Dread Judgment–is the Holy Church of God. The body is worthy of immortality, the building is worthy of God. The eye of man cannot see it from end to end, nor can the mind of man comprehend it. The building is of chosen materials: living stones, eyes and hearts, without roughness or ugliness, without corruption or change. Everything is in its place, everything is most beautiful in its entirety and in its parts. Here, brethren, is the goal of our journey! Here is the meaning of our burning in the furnace of suffering! Here is our life, better than all our plans and lovelier than all our desires.

O Lord Jesus, our man-loving Lord, do not cast us away as inferior material, but polish us and build us into Thine immortal body.

To Thee be glory and praise forever. Amen.