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1. The Holy Prophet Micah the Second.

Of the tribe of Judah and from the village of Morasth, from which he took the name 'the Morasthite', he was a contemporary of the prophets Isaiah, Amos and Hosea, and the Judean kings Jotham, Ahaz and Hezekiah. He denounced the vices of his people and denounced also the prophets who prophesied 'of wine and strong drink'. He foretold the fall of Samaria, which would come about because the city's elders take a bribe and the priests teach for hire, and prophets divine for money. 'Therefore shall Sion for your sake be plowed as a field, and Jerusalem shall become heaps'. But, of all his prophecies, the most important are those of the Messiah, and especially of the place of His birth. He named Bethlehem as the birthplace of the Messiah, 'whose goings-forth have been from of old, from everlasting' (5:2). It is not known certainly whether this prophet was killed by the Jews or died peacefully (see Jeremiah 26:18-19), but it is known that he was buried in his village, and that his relics were found, together with the relics of the Prophet Habakkuk, in the time of the Emperor Theodosius the Great, by some mysterious revelation received by the Bishop of Eleutheropolis.

2. The Hieromartyr Marcellus, Bishop of Apamea.

Born in Cyprus of rich and eminent parents, he was well-educated, and married and had children. When his wife died, he withdrew to follow the monastic life in Syria, leaving his child to Providence. He became known for his compassion, meekness and spiritual learning, because of which the people of Apamea chose him as their bishop. As a bishop, he laboured with zeal to bring pagans to the Christian faith. When an idolatrous temple was burned down, the idolaters seized Marcellus and, on the pretext of his having caused it, threw him into the fire, in about 389. We find in St Marcellus's `Life' that the blessing of water is mentioned, and its use.

From The Prologue From Ochrid by Bishop Nikolai Velimirovich
© 1985 Lazarica Press, Birmingham UK