July 6 (old calendar) / July 19 (new)
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July 6 (old calendar) / July 19 (new)

Fast

Ven. Sisoes the Great (429). Ven. Sisoës, Schema-monk, of the Kiev Caves (Far Caves—13th c.). Uncovering of the Relics of Holy Princess Juliana Ol’shánskaya (16th c.). Martyrs Marinus and Martha, and their children, Audifax and Abbachum (Habákkuk) and those with them at Rome: Cyrinus, Valentine, and Asterius the Presbyter (269). Martyrs Isaurius the Deacon, Innocent, Felix, Hermias, Basil, Peregrinus, Rufus, and Rufinus of Apollonia in Macedonia (3rd c.). Martyr Quintus of Phrygia (ca. 283). Virgin Martyr Lucy, Martyr Rixius, and those with them at Rome: Martyrs Anthony, Lucian, Isidore, Dion, Diodorus, Cutonius, Arnosus, Capicus, Saturus (Satyrus), and others (301). Synaxis of the Saints of Rádonezh.

Saint Sisoes the Great

Saint Sisoès le Grand, ascète au désert de Scété (429)

Saint Sisoes the Great (+ 429) was a solitary monk, pursuing asceticism in the Egyptian desert in a cave sanctified by the prayerful labors of his predecessor, Saint Anthony the Great (January 17). For his sixty years of labor in the desert, Saint Sisoes attained to sublime spiritual purity and he was granted the gift of wonderworking, so that by his prayers he once restored a dead child back to life.

Extremely strict with himself, Abba Sisoes was very merciful and compassionate to others, and he received everyone with love. To those who visited him, the saint first of all always taught humility. When one of the monks asked how he might attain to a constant remembrance of God, Saint Sisoes remarked, “That is no great thing, my son, but it is a great thing to regard yourself as inferior to everyone else. This leads to the acquisition of humility.” Asked by the monks whether one year is sufficient for repentance if a brother sins, Abba Sisoes said, “I trust in the mercy of God that if such a man repents with all his heart, then God will accept his repentance in three days.”

When Saint Sisoes lay upon his deathbed, the disciples surrounding the Elder saw that his face shone like the sun. They asked the dying man what he saw. Abba Sisoes replied that he saw Saint Anthony, the prophets, and the apostles. His face increased in brightness, and he spoke with someone. The monks asked, “With whom are you speaking, Father?” He said that angels had come for his soul, and he was entreating them to give him a little more time for repentance. The monks said, “You have no need for repentance, Father.” Saint Sisoes said with great humility, “I do not think that I have even begun to repent.”

After these words the face of the holy abba shone so brightly that the brethren were not able to look upon him. Saint Sisoes told them that he saw the Lord Himself. Then there was a flash like lightning, and a fragrant odor, and Abba Sisoes departed to the Heavenly Kingdom.

Troparion of the saint, tone 1

Dweller of the desert and angel in the body, / you were shown to be a wonder-worker, our God-bearing Father Sisoes. / You received heavenly gifts through fasting, vigil, and prayer: / healing the sick and the souls of those drawn to you by faith. / Glory to Him who gave you strength! / Glory to Him who granted you a crown! / Glory to Him who through you grants healing to all!

Kontakion of the saint, tone 5

From your youth you followed the angelic life / And were therefore filled with many godly gifts. / O Sisoes, emulator of the angels, / In the hour of your going forth from this life, / You shone resplendently as the sun / Revealing your glory and illuminating our souls!

Romans 16:1-16 (Epistle)

1
I commend to you Phoebe our sister, who is a servant of the church in Cenchrea,
2
that you may receive her in the Lord in a manner worthy of the saints, and assist her in whatever business she has need of you; for indeed she has been a helper of many and of myself also.
3
Greet Priscilla and Aquila, my fellow workers in Christ Jesus,
4
who risked their own necks for my life, to whom not only I give thanks, but also all the churches of the Gentiles.
5
Likewise greet the church that is in their house. Greet my beloved Epaenetus, who is the firstfruits of Achaia to Christ.
6
Greet Mary, who labored much for us.
7
Greet Andronicus and Junia, my countrymen and my fellow prisoners, who are of note among the apostles, who also were in Christ before me.
8
Greet Amplias, my beloved in the Lord.
9
Greet Urbanus, our fellow worker in Christ, and Stachys, my beloved.
10
Greet Apelles, approved in Christ. Greet those who are of the household of Aristobulus.
11
Greet Herodion, my countryman. Greet those who are of the household of Narcissus who are in the Lord.
12
Greet Tryphena and Tryphosa, who have labored in the Lord. Greet the beloved Persis, who labored much in the Lord.
13
Greet Rufus, chosen in the Lord, and his mother and mine.
14
Greet Asyncritus, Phlegon, Hermas, Patrobas, Hermes, and the brethren who are with them.
15
Greet Philologus and Julia, Nereus and his sister, and Olympas, and all the saints who are with them.
16
Greet one another with a holy kiss. The churches of Christ greet you.

Matthew 13:4-9 (Gospel)

4
And as he sowed, some seed fell by the wayside; and the birds came and devoured them.
5
Some fell on stony places, where they did not have much earth; and they immediately sprang up because they had no depth of earth.
6
But when the sun was up they were scorched, and because they had no root they withered away.
7
And some fell among thorns, and the thorns sprang up and choked them.
8
But others fell on good ground and yielded a crop: some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.
9
He who has ears to hear, let him hear!”

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About the Author

Emma Cazabonne

Emma Cazabonne

Beside an anthology on Cistercian texts, Emma Cazabonne has translated and published articles on Cistercian spirituality, the Middle Ages, and Orthodoxy. She converted to Orthodoxy in 2008. Her husband is an Orthodox priest. If you are interested in having your book translated into French, she can be contacted here https://wordsandpeace.com/contact-me/

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