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Thursday, 22nd March 2012 --- 13 Baramhat 1728

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Readings for Thursday of fifth week of Great Lent


Isaiah 42 : 5 - 16 Proverbs 4 : 20 - 27 Job 29 : 2 - 20 1 Samuel 3 : 1 - 20

Isaiah 42 : 5 - 16

Chapter 42

5Thus says God the LORD, Who created the heavens and stretched them out, Who spread forth the earth and that which comes from it, Who gives breath to the people on it, And spirit to those who walk on it:
6"I, the LORD, have called You in righteousness, And will hold Your hand; I will keep You and give You as a covenant to the people, As a light to the Gentiles,
7To open blind eyes, To bring out prisoners from the prison, Those who sit in darkness from the prison house.
8I am the LORD, that is My name; And My glory I will not give to another, Nor My praise to carved images.
9Behold, the former things have come to pass, And new things I declare; Before they spring forth I tell you of them."
10Sing to the LORD a new song, And His praise from the ends of the earth, You who go down to the sea, and all that is in it, You coastlands and you inhabitants of them!
11Let the wilderness and its cities lift up their voice, The villages that Kedar inhabits. Let the inhabitants of Sela sing, Let them shout from the top of the mountains.
12Let them give glory to the LORD, And declare His praise in the coastlands.
13The LORD shall go forth like a mighty man; He shall stir up His zeal like a man of war. He shall cry out, yes, shout aloud; He shall prevail against His enemies.
14"I have held My peace a long time, I have been still and restrained Myself. Now I will cry like a woman in labor, I will pant and gasp at once.
15I will lay waste the mountains and hills, And dry up all their vegetation; I will make the rivers coastlands, And I will dry up the pools.
16I will bring the blind by a way they did not know; I will lead them in paths they have not known. I will make darkness light before them, And crooked places straight. These things I will do for them, And not forsake them.

Proverbs 4 : 20 - 27

Chapter 4

20My son, give attention to my words; Incline your ear to my sayings.
21Do not let them depart from your eyes; Keep them in the midst of your heart;
22For they are life to those who find them, And health to all their flesh.
23Keep your heart with all diligence, For out of it spring the issues of life.
24Put away from you a deceitful mouth, And put perverse lips far from you.
25Let your eyes look straight ahead, And your eyelids look right before you.
26Ponder the path of your feet, And let all your ways be established.
27Do not turn to the right or the left; Remove your foot from evil.

Job 29 : 2 - 20

Chapter 29

2"Oh, that I were as in months past, As in the days when God watched over me;
3When His lamp shone upon my head, And when by His light I walked through darkness;
4Just as I was in the days of my prime, When the friendly counsel of God was over my tent;
5When the Almighty was yet with me, When my children were around me;
6When my steps were bathed with cream, And the rock poured out rivers of oil for me!
7"When I went out to the gate by the city, When I took my seat in the open square,
8The young men saw me and hid, And the aged arose and stood;
9The princes refrained from talking, And put their hand on their mouth;
10The voice of nobles was hushed, And their tongue stuck to the roof of their mouth.
11When the ear heard, then it blessed me, And when the eye saw, then it approved me;
12Because I delivered the poor who cried out, The fatherless and the one who had no helper.
13The blessing of a perishing man came upon me, And I caused the widow's heart to sing for joy.
14I put on righteousness, and it clothed me; My justice was like a robe and a turban.
15I was eyes to the blind, And I was feet to the lame.
16I was a father to the poor, And I searched out the case that I did not know.
17I broke the fangs of the wicked, And plucked the victim from his teeth.
18"Then I said, "I shall die in my nest, And multiply my days as the sand.
19My root is spread out to the waters, And the dew lies all night on my branch.
20My glory is fresh within me, And my bow is renewed in my hand.'

1 Samuel 3 : 1 - 20

Chapter 3

1Now the boy Samuel ministered to the LORD before Eli. And the word of the LORD was rare in those days; there was no widespread revelation.
2And it came to pass at that time, while Eli was lying down in his place, and when his eyes had begun to grow so dim that he could not see,
3and before the lamp of God went out in the tabernacle of the LORD where the ark of God was, and while Samuel was lying down,
4that the LORD called Samuel. And he answered, "Here I am!"
5So he ran to Eli and said, "Here I am, for you called me." And he said, "I did not call; lie down again." And he went and lay down.
6Then the LORD called yet again, "Samuel!" So Samuel arose and went to Eli, and said, "Here I am, for you called me." He answered, "I did not call, my son; lie down again."
7(Now Samuel did not yet know the LORD, nor was the word of the LORD yet revealed to him.)
8And the LORD called Samuel again the third time. So he arose and went to Eli, and said, "Here I am, for you did call me." Then Eli perceived that the LORD had called the boy.
9Therefore Eli said to Samuel, "Go, lie down; and it shall be, if He calls you, that you must say, "Speak, LORD, for Your servant hears."' So Samuel went and lay down in his place.
10Now the LORD came and stood and called as at other times, "Samuel! Samuel!" And Samuel answered, "Speak, for Your servant hears."
11Then the LORD said to Samuel: "Behold, I will do something in Israel at which both ears of everyone who hears it will tingle.
12In that day I will perform against Eli all that I have spoken concerning his house, from beginning to end.
13For I have told him that I will judge his house forever for the iniquity which he knows, because his sons made themselves vile, and he did not restrain them.
14And therefore I have sworn to the house of Eli that the iniquity of Eli's house shall not be atoned for by sacrifice or offering forever."
15So Samuel lay down until morning, and opened the doors of the house of the LORD. And Samuel was afraid to tell Eli the vision.
16Then Eli called Samuel and said, "Samuel, my son!" He answered, "Here I am."
17And he said, "What is the word that the LORD spoke to you? Please do not hide it from me. God do so to you, and more also, if you hide anything from me of all the things that He said to you."
18Then Samuel told him everything, and hid nothing from him. And he said, "It is the LORD. Let Him do what seems good to Him."
19So Samuel grew, and the LORD was with him and let none of his words fall to the ground.
20And all Israel from Dan to Beersheba knew that Samuel had been established as a prophet of the LORD.

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Matins Psalm

From the Psalms of our teacher David the prophet.
May his blessings be with us all.

Psalms 86 : 14 - 14

Chapter 86

14O God, the proud have risen against me, And a mob of violent men have sought my life, And have not set You before them.

Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord. Our Lord God, Savior, and King of us all, Jesus Christ, the Living Son of God to whom be glory forever.

Matins Gospel

Stand in the fear of God and listen to the Holy Gospel.
A reading from the Gospel according to our teacher Saint Luke the Evangelist.
May His Blessings be with us all.

Luke 9 : 37 - 43

Chapter 9

37Now it happened on the next day, when they had come down from the mountain, that a great multitude met Him.
38Suddenly a man from the multitude cried out, saying, "Teacher, I implore You, look on my son, for he is my only child.
39And behold, a spirit seizes him, and he suddenly cries out; it convulses him so that he foams at the mouth; and it departs from him with great difficulty, bruising him.
40So I implored Your disciples to cast it out, but they could not."
41Then Jesus answered and said, "O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you and bear with you? Bring your son here."
42And as he was still coming, the demon threw him down and convulsed him. Then Jesus rebuked the unclean spirit, healed the child, and gave him back to his father.
43And they were all amazed at the majesty of God. But while everyone marveled at all the things which Jesus did, He said to His disciples,

And Glory be to God forever.

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Liturgy Gospel

Paulines Epistle

Paul, the servant of our Lord Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, appointed to the Gospel of God.
A reading from the Epistle of our teacher Paul to the Corinthians .
May his blessings be upon us.

1 Corinthians 10 : 14 - end

Chapter 10

14Therefore, my beloved, flee from idolatry.
15I speak as to wise men; judge for yourselves what I say.
16The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ?
17For we, though many, are one bread and one body; for we all partake of that one bread.
18Observe Israel after the flesh: Are not those who eat of the sacrifices partakers of the altar?
19What am I saying then? That an idol is anything, or what is offered to idols is anything?
20Rather, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice they sacrifice to demons and not to God, and I do not want you to have fellowship with demons.
21You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons; you cannot partake of the Lord's table and of the table of demons.
22Or do we provoke the Lord to jealousy? Are we stronger than He?
23All things are lawful for me, but not all things are helpful; all things are lawful for me, but not all things edify.
24Let no one seek his own, but each one the other's well-being.
25Eat whatever is sold in the meat market, asking no questions for conscience' sake;
26for "the earth is the LORD's, and all its fullness."
27If any of those who do not believe invites you to dinner, and you desire to go, eat whatever is set before you, asking no question for conscience' sake.
28But if anyone says to you, "This was offered to idols," do not eat it for the sake of the one who told you, and for conscience' sake; for "the earth is the LORD's, and all its fullness."
29"Conscience," I say, not your own, but that of the other. For why is my liberty judged by another man's conscience?
30But if I partake with thanks, why am I evil spoken of for the food over which I give thanks?
31Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.
32Give no offense, either to the Jews or to the Greeks or to the church of God,
33just as I also please all men in all things, not seeking my own profit, but the profit of many, that they may be saved.

1 Corinthians 11 : 1 - 1

Chapter 11

1Imitate me, just as I also imitate Christ.

The grace of God the Father be with you all.

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Catholic Epistle

A Reading from Epistle 1 of St. Peter .
May his blessing be upon us.

1 Peter 1 : 2 - 8

Chapter 1

2elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, in sanctification of the Spirit, for obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace to you and peace be multiplied.
3Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
4to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you,
5who are kept by the power of God through faith for salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.
6In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials,
7that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ,
8whom having not seen you love. Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory,

Do not love the world or the things in the world.
The world passes away, and its desires; but he who does the will of God abides forever.

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Acts of the Apostles

The Acts of our fathers the apostles, may their blessings be with us.

Acts 21 : 5 - 14

Chapter 21

5When we had come to the end of those days, we departed and went on our way; and they all accompanied us, with wives and children, till we were out of the city. And we knelt down on the shore and prayed.
6When we had taken our leave of one another, we boarded the ship, and they returned home.
7And when we had finished our voyage from Tyre, we came to Ptolemais, greeted the brethren, and stayed with them one day.
8On the next day we who were Paul's companions departed and came to Caesarea, and entered the house of Philip the evangelist, who was one of the seven, and stayed with him.
9Now this man had four virgin daughters who prophesied.
10And as we stayed many days, a certain prophet named Agabus came down from Judea.
11When he had come to us, he took Paul's belt, bound his own hands and feet, and said, "Thus says the Holy Spirit, "So shall the Jews at Jerusalem bind the man who owns this belt, and deliver him into the hands of the Gentiles."'
12Now when we heard these things, both we and those from that place pleaded with him not to go up to Jerusalem.
13Then Paul answered, "What do you mean by weeping and breaking my heart? For I am ready not only to be bound, but also to die at Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus."
14So when he would not be persuaded, we ceased, saying, "The will of the Lord be done."

The word of the Lord shall grow, multiply, be mighty, and be confirmed, in the holy Church of God.

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Day 13 of the Blessed Coptic Month of Baramhat, may God make it always received, year after year, with reassurance and tranquility, while our sins after forgiven by the tender mercies of our God my fathers and brothers.

The Thirteenth Day of the Blessed Month of Baramhat

Departure of Abba Dionysius, the Fourteenth Pope of Alexandria

      On this day (March 8th, 264 A.D.) the great father Abba Dionysius, the fourteenth Pope of Alexandria, departed. His parents were stare worshippers of the Sun (Sabians) and they put emphasis on teaching him all the knowledge of that sect. One day a Christian old woman passed by him, who had with her some pages of a book containing an Epistle of St. Paul the apostle and offered it to him to buy it. When he read it he found in it strange sayings and unusual knowledge. He asked her: "For how much will you sell it?" She said: "For one dinar of gold." He gave her three dinars and asked her to find the rest of the pages of the book and he was willing to pay her double. She went and brought him more pages. Having read them through he found the book to be still incomplete, he asked her to search for the rest of the book. She told him: "I found these quires among my father's books. If you want to acquire the complete book, go to the church and there you can find it." He went and asked one of the priests to show him what is called the Epistles of Paul. He gave it to him, read it, and memorized it. Then he went to St. Demetrius the twelfth Pope, who taught and instructed him in the facts of the Christian faith then baptized him. He became well rehearsed in the doctrine and knowledge of the church, and Anba Demetrius appointed him a teacher for the people. When Anba Demetrius departed and Anba Heraclas (Yaroklas) was enthroned, he appointed him as a deputy to judge among the believers and entrusted him to administer the affairs of the patriarchate.

      When St. Heraclas departed, all the people agreed to appoint this father Patriarch. He was enthroned on the first of Tubah (December 28th, 246 A.D.) during the reign of Emperor Philip who was a lover of the Christians, and he shepherded his flock with the best of care, nevertheless, he suffered much tribulations. When Decius rose up against Philip and killed him, and reigned in his place, he incited persecution against the Christians. Decius slew many of the patriarchs, bishops, and believers. This father endured much suffering during that time. Decius died and Gallus reigned after him, and persecution quieted down during his reign. When Gallus died and Valerian reigned in his place, he renewed the persecution severely against the Christians, and his men seized Abba Dionysius and imprisoned him. They asked him to worship the idols but he refused saying: "We worship God the Father, and His Son Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit the One God." They threatened him, killed few men in front of him to terrify him but he was not afraid. They banished him and shortly after, they brought him back and told him: "We have been informed that you consecrate the offering secretly by yourself." He replied: "We do not forsake our prayers day or night" then he turned to the people present around him and told them: "Go and pray and if I am away from you in the body, I shall be with you in spirit." The governor became raged and returned him to exile. When Sapor king of Persia overcame Emperor Valerian and seized him, his son Gallienus, who was wise and gentle, took over the empire. He released all the believers who were in prison and brought back those who were in exile. He wrote to the Patriarch and the bishops a letter to assure their safety in opening the churches. In the days of this father, certain people arose in the Arabian countries saying: "That the soul dies with the body, and on the day of Resurrection, it shall be raised up with it." He gathered against them a council and anathematized them. When Paul of Samosata denied the Son, a Council assembled against him in Antioch, this Saint was not able to attend for his age. He wrote a letter to the council, rich with wisdom, explained in it the corruptive opinion of this heretic, and stated the true Orthodox belief. He finished his good strife, and departed in a good old age on (March 8th, 264 A.D.), having sat on the Apostolic Throne seventeen years, two month and ten days.

May His prayers be with us all. Amen.

Return of the Great Saints Anba Macarius the Great and Anba Macarius of Alexandria from Exile


On this day also is the commemoration of the return of the Great Sts. Anba Macarius the Great and Anba Macarius of Alexandria, from exile on an island in Upper Egypt. Emperor Valens the arian had exiled them to this island. The natives of this island worshipped idols, and according to the orders of Valens the two Saints were tortured severely for three years. It came to pass one day that satan entered the daughter of the pagan priest of this island and tortured her. St. Macarius the great came forward and prayed over her and the Lord healed her and subsequently the priest and the people of the island believed on the Lord Christ. The Saints taught them the facts of the Christian faith and baptized them on the eve of the feast of Epiphany, 11th. of Tubah, changed the temple into a church, and with a revelation from the Lord Christ they ordained priests and deacons for them. When they wished to return they did not know the way, so the angel of the Lord appeared to them, guided them walking, until they reached Alexandria. From there they went to the wilderness of Sheahat (Scetis). The monks of the wilderness came out to meat them, and they were at that time about fifty thousand monks among them were Anba John the short and Anba Bishoy, and they all rejoiced to meat their fathers.

May The prayers of these Saints be with us. Amen.

Martyrdom of the Forty Martyrs of Sebastia


On this day also the holy forty martyrs of the city of Sebastia were martyred. Emperor Constantine the great had appointed his friend Lecius ruler for the east and commanded him to treat the Christians well. When he arrived to his headquarter, he ordered his subordinate to worship the idols but they refused and cursed his idols. That night some of the soldiers and their children, from the city of Sebastia, made an agreement among themselves to go to the governor confessing their faith. While they were sleeping the angel of the Lord appeared to them, strengthened them and comforted their hearts. In the morning they stood before the Governor and confessed their faith in the Lord christ, he threatened them but they were not afraid. He commanded his men to stone them, but the stones came back upon those who stoned them. He ordered to throw them in a nearby lake, which was icy. Their organs were severed because of the excessive cold. One of them whose strength was weakened, went out of the icy water and entered the bath house nearby the lake. The heat in the bath house melted the ice that was on him but he died quickly, and lost his reward.

      One of the guards saw angels descending from the heaven and in their hands crowns, they placed them over the heads of the thirty nine martyrs and remained one crown in the hand of the angel. The guard went down into the lake shouting "I am christian...I am christian." He took the crown that was in the hand of the angel and was counted among the martyrs. Among the martyrs, were young men, whose mothers encouraged and strengthened them. Because they remained in the lake for a long time and they did not die, the Governor wished to break their legs, but the Lord took their souls and reposed them. He ordered to burn their bodies and to cast them after that into the sea. As they were carrying them out of the lake, they found a young man alive, so they left him. His mother took him and tried to threw him on the wagon with his mates but they put him off the wagon again for he was still alive. His mother took him and he died in her bosom so she put him back on the wagon. They took them outside the city and cast them into the fire which did not harm them, then they casted them into the river. On the third day those holy martyrs appeared to the Bishop of Sebastia in a vision and told him: "Go to the river and take our bodies." He went with the priests, deacons and the people to the river and found the bodies. They carried the bodies with great honor and placed them in a beautiful shrine, and their strife was heard in all the countries.

May their prayers be with us and Glory be to God forever. Amen.

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Divine Psalm

Stand in the fear of God and listen to the Holy Gospel.
A reading from the Gospel according to our teacher Saint John the Evangelist.
May His Blessings be with us all. Amen.
From the Psalms of our teacher David the prophet, and the Good King.
May his blessings be with us all.

Psalms 86 : 17 - 17

Chapter 86

17Show me a sign for good, That those who hate me may see it and be ashamed, Because You, LORD, have helped me and comforted me.


Divine Gospel

Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.
Our Lord God, Savior, and King of us all, Jesus Christ, the Living Son of God to whom be glory forever.

Luke 13 : 10 - 17

Chapter 13

10Now He was teaching in one of the synagogues on the Sabbath.
11And behold, there was a woman who had a spirit of infirmity eighteen years, and was bent over and could in no way raise herself up.
12But when Jesus saw her, He called her to Him and said to her, "Woman, you are loosed from your infirmity."
13And He laid His hands on her, and immediately she was made straight, and glorified God.
14But the ruler of the synagogue answered with indignation, because Jesus had healed on the Sabbath; and he said to the crowd, "There are six days on which men ought to work; therefore come and be healed on them, and not on the Sabbath day."
15The Lord then answered him and said, "Hypocrite! Does not each one of you on the Sabbath loose his ox or donkey from the stall, and lead it away to water it?
16So ought not this woman, being a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has bound--think of it--for eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the Sabbath?"
17And when He said these things, all His adversaries were put to shame; and all the multitude rejoiced for all the glorious things that were done by Him.

And Glory be to God forever.

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