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From the book of Kings, may his holy blessings be with us all. Amen From the book of Isaiah, may his holy blessings be with us all. Amen From the book of Proverbs, may his holy blessings be with us all. Amen From the book of Job, may his holy blessings be with us all. Amen From the book of Sirach, may his holy blessings be with us all. Amen 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. From the Psalms of our teacher David the prophet. May his blessings be with us all. 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. Amen. Paul, the servant of our Lord Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, appointed to the Gospel of God. A reading from the 1 Epistle of our teacher Paul to Timothy. May his blessings be upon us. Amen A Reading from the Epistle of St. Jude. May his blessing be upon us. Amen The Acts of our fathers the apostles, may their blessings be with us. The Seventeenth Day of the Blessed Coptic Month of Paremhotep, may God make it always received, year after year, with reassurance and tranquility, while our sins are forgiven by the tender mercies of our God my fathers and brothers, Amen. 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. From the Psalms of our teacher David the prophet. May his blessings be with us all. 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. Amen.
Thursday, March 26, 2015 | Paremhotep 17, 1731
2 Kings 4:8-41
Now it happened one day that Elisha went to Shunem, where there was a notable woman, and she persuaded him to eat some food. So it was, as often as he passed by, he would turn in there to eat some food. And she said to her husband, "Look now, I know that this is a holy man of God, who passes by us regularly. Please, let us make a small upper room on the wall; and let us put a bed for him there, and a table and a chair and a lampstand; so it will be, whenever he comes to us, he can turn in there." And it happened one day that he came there, and he turned in to the upper room and lay down there. Then he said to Gehazi his servant, "Call this Shunammite woman."When he had called her, she stood before him. And he said to him, "Say now to her, Look, you have been concerned for us with all this care. What can I do for you? Do you want me to speak on your behalf to the king or to the commander of the army?"She answered, "I dwell among my own people." So he said, "What then is to be done for her?"And Gehazi answered, "Actually, she has no son, and her husband is old." So he said, "Call her."When he had called her, she stood in the doorway. Then he said, "About this time next year you shall embrace a son."And she said, "No, my lord. Man of God, do not lie to your maidservant!" But the woman conceived, and bore a son when the appointed time had come, of which Elisha had told her. And the child grew. Now it happened one day that he went out to his father, to the reapers. And he said to his father, "My head, my head!"So he said to a servant, "Carry him to his mother." When he had taken him and brought him to his mother, he sat on her knees till noon, and then died. And she went up and laid him on the bed of the man of God, shut the door upon him, and went out. Then she called to her husband, and said, "Please send me one of the young men and one of the donkeys, that I may run to the man of God and come back." So he said, "Why are you going to him today? It is neither the New Moon nor the Sabbath."And she said, "It is well." Then she saddled a donkey, and said to her servant, "Drive, and go forward; do not slacken the pace for me unless I tell you." And so she departed, and went to the man of God at Mount Carmel. So it was, when the man of God saw her afar off, that he said to his servant Gehazi, "Look, the Shunammite woman! Please run now to meet her, and say to her, Is it well with you? Is it well with your husband? Is it well with the child?"And she answered, "It is well." Now when she came to the man of God at the hill, she caught him by the feet, but Gehazi came near to push her away. But the man of God said, "Let her alone; for her soul is in deep distress, and the LORD has hidden it from me, and has not told me." So she said, "Did I ask a son of my lord? Did I not say, Do not deceive me?" Then he said to Gehazi, "Get yourself ready, and take my staff in your hand, and be on your way. If you meet anyone, do not greet him; and if anyone greets you, do not answer him; but lay my staff on the face of the child." And the mother of the child said, "As the LORD lives, and as your soul lives, I will not leave you."So he arose and followed her. Now Gehazi went on ahead of them, and laid the staff on the face of the child; but there was neither voice nor hearing. Therefore he went back to meet him, and told him, saying, "The child has not awakened." When Elisha came into the house, there was the child, lying dead on his bed. He went in therefore, shut the door behind the two of them, and prayed to the LORD. And he went up and lay on the child, and put his mouth on his mouth, his eyes on his eyes, and his hands on his hands; and he stretched himself out on the child, and the flesh of the child became warm. He returned and walked back and forth in the house, and again went up and stretched himself out on him; then the child sneezed seven times, and the child opened his eyes. And he called Gehazi and said, "Call this Shunammite woman."So he called her. And when she came in to him, he said, "Pick up your son." So she went in, fell at his feet, and bowed to the ground; then she picked up her son and went out. And Elisha returned to Gilgal, and there was a famine in the land. Now the sons of the prophets were sitting before him; and he said to his servant, "Put on the large pot, and boil stew for the sons of the prophets." So one went out into the field to gather herbs, and found a wild vine, and gathered from it a lapful of wild gourds, and came and sliced them into the pot of stew, though they did not know what they were. Then they served it to the men to eat. Now it happened, as they were eating the stew, that they cried out and said, "Man of God, there is death in the pot!"And they could not eat it. So he said, "Then bring some flour."And he put it into the pot, and said, "Serve it to the people, that they may eat."And there was nothing harmful in the pot.
"Thus says the LORD to His anointed, To Cyrus, whose right hand I have held To subdue nations before him And loose the armor of kings, To open before him the double doors, So that the gates will not be shut: I will go before you And make the crooked places straight; I will break in pieces the gates of bronze And cut the bars of iron. I will give you the treasures of darkness And hidden riches of secret places, That you may know that I, the LORD, Who call you by your name, Am the God of Israel. For Jacob My servants sake, And Israel My elect, I have even called you by your name; I have named you, though you have not known Me. I am the LORD, and there is no other; There is no God besides Me. I will gird you, though you have not known Me, That they may know from the rising of the sun to its setting That there is none besides Me. I am the LORD, and there is no other; I form the light and create darkness, I make peace and create calamity; I, the LORD, do all these things. "Rain down, you heavens, from above, And let the skies pour down righteousness; Let the earth open, let them bring forth salvation, And let righteousness spring up together. I, the LORD, have created it. "Woe to him who strives with his Maker! Let the potsherd strive with the potsherds of the earth! Shall the clay say to him who forms it, What are you making? Or shall your handiwork say, He has no hands? Woe to him who says to his father, What are you begetting? Or to the woman, What have you brought forth?"
Wisdom has built her house, She has hewn out her seven pillars; She has slaughtered her meat, She has mixed her wine, She has also furnished her table. She has sent out her maidens, She cries out from the highest places of the city, "Whoever is simple, let him turn in here!"As for him who lacks understanding, she says to him, "Come, eat of my bread And drink of the wine I have mixed. Forsake foolishness and live, And go in the way of understanding. "He who corrects a scoffer gets shame for himself, And he who rebukes a wicked man only harms himself. Do not correct a scoffer, lest he hate you; Rebuke a wise man, and he will love you. Give instruction to a wise man, and he will be still wiser; Teach a just man, and he will increase in learning. "The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom, And the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding. For by me your days will be multiplied, And years of life will be added to you.
Moreover Elihu answered and said: "Do you think this is right? Do you say, My righteousness is more than Gods? For you say, What advantage will it be to You? What profit shall I have, more than if I had sinned? "I will answer you, And your companions with you. Look to the heavens and see; And behold the clouds They are higher than you. If you sin, what do you accomplish against Him? Or, if your transgressions are multiplied, what do you do to Him? If you are righteous, what do you give Him? Or what does He receive from your hand? Your wickedness affects a man such as you, And your righteousness a son of man. "Because of the multitude of oppressions they cry out; They cry out for help because of the arm of the mighty. But no one says, Where is God my Maker, Who gives songs in the night, Who teaches us more than the beasts of the earth, And makes us wiser than the birds of heaven? There they cry out, but He does not answer, Because of the pride of evil men. Surely God will not listen to empty talk, Nor will the Almighty regard it. Although you say you do not see Him, Yet justice is before Him, and you must wait for Him. And now, because He has not punished in His anger, Nor taken much notice of folly, Therefore Job opens his mouth in vain; He multiplies words without knowledge."
Have mercy on me, O LORD! Consider my trouble from those who hate me, You who lift me up from the gates of death,
Then He began to tell the people this parable: "A certain man planted a vineyard, leased it to vinedressers, and went into a far country for a long time. Now at vintage-time he sent a servant to the vinedressers, that they might give him some of the fruit of the vineyard. But the vinedressers beat him and sent him away empty-handed. Again he sent another servant; and they beat him also, treated him shamefully, and sent him away empty-handed. And again he sent a third; and they wounded him also and cast him out. "Then the owner of the vineyard said, What shall I do? I will send my beloved son. Probably they will respect him when they see him. But when the vinedressers saw him, they reasoned among themselves, saying, This is the heir. Come, let us kill him, that the inheritance may be ours. So they cast him out of the vineyard and killed him. Therefore what will the owner of the vineyard do to them? He will come and destroy those vinedressers and give the vineyard to others."And when they heard it they said, "Certainly not!" Then He looked at them and said, "What then is this that is written: The stone which the builders rejected Has become the chief cornerstone? Whoever falls on that stone will be broken; but on whomever it falls, it will grind him to powder." And the chief priests and the scribes that very hour sought to lay hands on Him, but they feared the peoplefor they knew He had spoken this parable against them.
And Glory be to God forever
1 Timothy 2:1-3:4
Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time, for which I was appointed a preacher and an apostleI am speaking the truth in Christand not lyinga teacher of the Gentiles in faith and truth. I desire therefore that the men pray everywhere, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting; in like manner also, that the women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with propriety and moderation, not with braided hair or gold or pearls or costly clothing, but, which is proper for women professing godliness, with good works. Let a woman learn in silence with all submission. And I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man, but to be in silence. For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression. Nevertheless she will be saved in childbearing if they continue in faith, love, and holiness, with self-control. This is a faithful saying: If a man desires the position of a bishop, he desires a good work. A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, temperate, sober-minded, of good behavior, hospitable, able to teach; not given to wine, not violent, not greedy for money, but gentle, not quarrelsome, not covetous; one who rules his own house well, having his children in submission with all reverence
The grace of God the Father be with you all. Amen.
These are sensual persons, who cause divisions, not having the Spirit. But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit, keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life. And on some have compassion, making a distinction; but others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire, hating even the garment defiled by the flesh. Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, And to present you faultless Before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy, To God our Savior, Who alone is wise, Be glory and majesty, Dominion and power, Both now and forever. Amen.
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. Amen.
Acts of the Apostles
Acts of the Apostles 27:16-20
And running under the shelter of an island called Clauda, we secured the skiff with difficulty. When they had taken it on board, they used cables to undergird the ship; and fearing lest they should run aground on the Syrtis Sands , they struck sail and so were driven. And because we were exceedingly tempest-tossed, the next day they lightened the ship. On the third day we threw the ships tackle overboard with our own hands. Now when neither sun nor stars appeared for many days, and no small tempest beat on us , all hope that we would be saved was finally given up.
The word of the Lord shall grow, multiply, be mighty, and be confirmed, in the holy Church of God. Amen.
Departure of Saint Lazarus the Beloved of Christ Whom our Lord Raised From Dead and Bishop of Cyprus
On this day the righteous Lazarus, the beloved of the Lord Christ, departed. He was the brother of Martha and Mary who anointed the Lord with fragrant oil and wiped His feet with her hair. When Lazarus fell sick the sisters sent to the Lord Christ saying: 'Lord, behold, he whom You love is sick.' When Jesus heard that, He said, 'This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God may be glorified through it.' Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus. So, when He heard that he was sick, He stayed two more days in the place where He was' to magnify the miracle. Then after this He said to the disciples, 'Let us go to Judea again.' The disciples told Him, 'Rabbi, lately the Jews sought to stone You, and are You going there again?' Jesus answered, 'Are there not twelve hours in the day? If anyone walks in the day, he does not stumble, because he sees the light of this world. 'But if one walks in the night, he stumbles, because the light is not in him.' These things He said, and after that He said to them, 'Our friend Lazarus sleeps, but I go that I may wake him up.' Then His disciples said, 'Lord, if he sleeps he will get well.' However, Jesus spoke of his death, but they thought that He was speaking about taking rest in sleep. Then Jesus said to them plainly, 'Lazarus is dead. And I am glad for your sakes that I was not there, that you may believe. Nevertheless let us go to him.'
When the Lord came to Bethany, which is nearby Jerusalem, He stood before the tomb and said: 'Take away the stone.' Martha, the sister of him who was dead, said to Him, 'Lord, by this time there is a stench, for he has been dead four days.' Jesus said to her, 'Did I not say to you that if you would believe you would see the glory of God?' Then they took away the stone from the place where the dead man was lying. And Jesus lifted up His eyes and prayed then he cried with a loud voice, 'Lazarus, come forth!' And he who had died came out bound hand and foot with grave-clothes, and his face was wrapped with a cloth. Jesus said to them, 'Loose him, and let him go.' (John 11:1-45) That was to manifest the reality of his death, so no one would think that this was deception with previous arrangement, for that the miracle was magnified and many believed.
May the prayers of this righteous be with us. Amen.
Commemoration of Saint George the Ascetic, Saint Belasius the Martyr, and Saint Joseph the Bishop
On this day also the church celebrates the commemoration of the Saints George the ascetic, Belasius the martyr, and Anba Joseph the bishop.
May their prayers be with us. Amen.
Departure of Saint Basil the Bishop of Jerusalem
On this day also of the year 1615 A.M. (March 26th, 1899 A.D.) the great father Anba Basilius, Metropolitan of Jerusalem, departed. This father was born in the village of El-Dabah, Farshout County, the province of Quena, for righteous parents. They nursed him with the milk of righteousness since his young age, as they taught him reading and writing, so he grew on loving perfection and moral excellence. When he was twenty-five years old he went to the monastery of St. Antonios and put on the monastic garb in the year 1559 A.M. He persevered in worshipping and ascetism and because he was adorned with righteousness and piety they ordained him priest in the year 1565 A.M. and archpriest (Hegumen) in the year 1568 A.M., then they appointed him an Abott for the monastery. He managed the monastery well with gentleness, wisdom and meekness that made the blessed Anba Kyrellos IV to ordain him Metropolitan for Jerusalem and the parishes that were attached to him: El-Kaliobia, El-Sharkia, El-Dakahlia, El-Gharbia, Suez, Domiat, and Port-Said. He had shown prudence in managing the affairs of these parishes that made him the center of admiration and pride to the Copts. All his efforts were dedicated for the building of churches all over his parish, buying and renovating properties in Jaffa and Jerusalem. He was loved by all the people of Syria and Palestine, regardless of their religion or political persuasion, especially the rulers of Jerusalem, for his wise policy and straight morals. During his days a dispute aroused from the Ethiopians where they claimed their ownership for the monastery of El-Sultan in Jerusalem. Because of this father and his vigilance they could not establish an ownership for the monastery. He attended the enthronement of Pope Demetrius II, the hundred eleventh, and Pope Kyrellos V, the hundred twelfth. He spent his days in continuous effort for what was good for his people and departed in peace.
May his prayers be with us. Amen.
Martyrdom of Saint Sedhom Bishay of Domiate
On this day also the church commemorates the martyrdom of Sedhom Bishay in Domiat on the 17th of Baramhat year 1565 A.D. (March 25th, 1844 A.D.). He endured the torture for the Name of the Lord Christ and his martyrdom made the rising of the Cross during the Christian funeral processions openly, for it was forbidden before. This martyr was a clerical employee in the government of the port of Domiat during the days of Mohammed Ali Basha the Governor of Egypt. A revolt of mobs in the port arose, they seized Sidhom Bishay and accused him falsely that he cursed Islam and witnessed against him before the religious judge a low uncivilized person and a donkey driver. The judge decided either he would forsake his faith or be killed, he whipped him and then sent him to the Governor of the city. After the Governor had examined his case he issued the same judgement against him as the judge did. Sidhom was steadfast in his Christian faith, not caring to be killed. They whipped, dragged him on his face down the stairs in the Governor palace, then they put him on a buffalo facing the tail and went around with him in the streets of the city insulting and degrading him. The Christians in the city became afraid and locked themselves in their houses.
The mob continued to insult him and tortured him in different ways until he was about to deliver his soul; so they brought him to the door of his house and left him there. His family went out and brought him inside and five days later he departed to heaven. His departure was a great martyrdom, and the Christians counted him among the holy martyrs. They gathered regardless of their denomination and joined in his funeral in a celebration that there was nothing like it before. The Christians carried their arms and the priest put on their vestments headed by the Archpriest Yousef Michael who was the head of the Coptic congregation in Domiat and accompanied by the priests of the other denominations. They marched in his funeral in the streets of the city and in front of him the deacons carrying the banners of the Cross, and they arrived to the church where they prayed the funeral rites. The people went on objecting this reprehensible and painful incident and talking about the patience and endurance of the different kinds of torture in silence and the steadfastness of Sidhom the martyr. The prominent people of the Christian community in Domiat deliberated as how to avoid these incidents in the future. They decided to ask the consuls of the foreign countries to mediate with the ruler of the country and the Pope the Patriarch of the Copts and sent to them detailed reports. Mr. Mikhail Sorour the official representative of seven countries in Domiat was in charge of this mediation. The ruler of Egypt was concerned about this incident and sent two official representatives to examine the case. So they reopened the inquiry and they realized the injustice and the ill-treatment that befell the great martyr and convicted the judge and the governor for their wrong doing, stripped them from their honor then exiled them. They asked, as a good will and to comfort the people, to allow the raising of the Cross publicly before the Christian funerals, and the ruler allowed that in Domiat. This was allowed later on all over the country during the Papacy of Pope Kyrellos IV.
May the blessings of this great martyr be with us and glory be to God forever. Amen.
Divine Liturgy Gospel
Have mercy on me, O LORD! Consider my trouble from those who hate me, You who lift me up from the gates of death, That I may tell of all Your praise In the gates of the daughter of Zion. I will rejoice in Your salvation.
Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me has everlasting life. I am the bread of life. Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and are dead. This is the bread which comes down from heaven, that one may eat of it and not die. I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever; and the bread that I shall give is My flesh, which I shall give for the life of the world." The Jews therefore quarreled among themselves, saying, "How can this Man give us His flesh to eat?" Then Jesus said to them, "Most assuredly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in you. Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For My flesh is food indeed, and My blood is drink indeed. He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in Me, and I in him. As the living Father sent Me, and I live because of the Father, so he who feeds on Me will live because of Me. This is the bread which came down from heavennot as your fathers ate the manna, and are dead. He who eats this bread will live forever." These things He said in the synagogue as He taught in Capernaum. Therefore many of His disciples, when they heard this, said, "This is a hard saying; who can understand it?" When Jesus knew in Himself that His disciples complained about this, He said to them, "Does this offend you? What then if you should see the Son of Man ascend where He was before? It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life. But there are some of you who do not believe."For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were who did not believe, and who would betray Him. And He said, "Therefore I have said to you that no one can come to Me unless it has been granted to him by My Father." From that time many of His disciples went back and walked with Him no more. Then Jesus said to the twelve, "Do you also want to go away?" But Simon Peter answered Him, "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. Also we have come to believe and know that You are the Christ, the Son of the living God." Jesus answered them, "Did I not choose you, the twelve, and one of you is a devil?" He spoke of Judas Iscariot, the son of Simon, for it was he who would betray Him, being one of the twelve.
And Glory be to God forever
From the book of Kings, may his holy blessings be with us all. Amen
From the book of Isaiah, may his holy blessings be with us all. Amen
From the book of Proverbs, may his holy blessings be with us all. Amen
From the book of Job, may his holy blessings be with us all. Amen
From the book of Sirach, may his holy blessings be with us all. Amen
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. From the Psalms of our teacher David the prophet. May his blessings be with us all.
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. Amen.
Paul, the servant of our Lord Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, appointed to the Gospel of God. A reading from the 1 Epistle of our teacher Paul to Timothy. May his blessings be upon us. Amen
A Reading from the Epistle of St. Jude. May his blessing be upon us. Amen
The Acts of our fathers the apostles, may their blessings be with us.
The Seventeenth Day of the Blessed Coptic Month of Paremhotep, may God make it always received, year after year, with reassurance and tranquility, while our sins are forgiven by the tender mercies of our God my fathers and brothers, Amen.
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. From the Psalms of our teacher David the prophet. May his blessings be with us all.
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. Amen.