All Saints for January 22


The Orthodox Church possesses an inexhaustible treasure in the evidence of life after death. To note one example among many; one which at the same time witnesses that the spirit of man lives after bodily death and that voluntary obedience brings blessed immortal-ity: when St Theodosius the Great had founded a monastery, he had at first only seven monks. To establish them well in remembrance of death, he ordered them to dig a grave. When the grave was ready, Theodosius stood over it, gathered the seven of them together and said: `Well, my children; the grave is now ready! Is there among you one who is ready for death, to be buried in this grave?'One of them, a priest called Basil, fell to his knees and besought Theodosius's blessing to die. Theodosius ordered that the memorial services be held for Basil on the third, ninth and fortieth day, as is the custom for the departed. When the fortieth memorial was finished, Basil, in full health, lay down and died. And he was buried in the new grave. On the fortieth day after his burial, Basil appeared in the morning among the brethren in church and sang with them. At first only Theodosius saw him, but he prayed to God that He would open the eyes of the others. Then ell the brethren looked and saw Basil among them. One of the brethren, Letius, joyfully spread his arms wide, intending to embrace Basil, but the latter disappeared. Basil's voice was heard: `Save yourselves, my fathers and brethren, save yourselves!'


Let me ponder on the Lord Jesus's freedom from care about food and drink: 1. On His freedom from care about Himself, as He showed in His actions. 2. On the freedom from care about food and clothing that He preached to others (Matt. 6:31).


-on God's omniscience and providence.

`the very hairs of your head are all numbered' (Matt. 10:30).

The hairs of your head, also, are numbered, my brother, not to mention the days of your life! Fear not, then, that you will die before the appointed time, neither hope by some means to prolong your life for even one day beyond the will of Him who counts and mea-sures. Let this knowledge teach you meekness and the fear of God.

The hairs of your head, also, are numbered, not to mention your sufferings on earth. Fear not, then, that you will suffer more than the appointed measure. Fear even less that your sufferings will remain forgotten and uncounted by Him who sees all. This know-ledge will teach you patience and trust towards your Creator and Provider.

The hairs of your head, also, are numbered, not to mention your friends and foes upon earth. Fear not, then, that you will have too many friends or too many foes; neither fear that your foes will triumph over you or hope that your friends will defend you. Only take care to have God for your friend, and fear nothing. Lo, He is the only friend that is constant in his love.

O gracious Lord, our wise Provider, who knowest the number, the measure and the time of all things; drive far from us all fear but the fear of Thee. May we, from fear of Thee, come to a pure and holy love for Thee, our Creator and Benefactor. To Thee be glory and praise for ever. Amen.

* From "The Prologue from Ochrid", by Bishop Nikolai Velimirovic - Lazarica Press - Birmingham 1985
Four Book Edition - Translated by Mother Maria - Dates based on old church calendar.
Please see our calendar for conversion between old and new calendar dates.


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