Prologue Search

1. The Assembly of the Enlighteners and Teachers of Serbia.

On this day are commemorated, not all the saints of Serbia in general, but several archbishops and patriarchs:

St Sava, the first Archbishop of Serbia, called equal to the apostles.

Arsenius, St Sava's successor, a great hierarch and wonderworker.

Sava II, son of King Stephen the First-Crowned, who lived a long time in Jerusalem and was called 'like to Moses in meekness'.

Nicodemus, who lived in asceticism on the Holy Mountain, and was abbot of Hilandar and archbishop of 'all the Serbian and maritime lands'.

Joannicius, archbishop and then, from 1346, patriarch, who died in 1349.

Ephraim, an ascetic, chosen against his will as patriarch in the time of Prince Lazar, in 1376. He crowned Lazar and then renounced the patriarchal throne and withdrew into solitude.

Spiridon, Ephraim's successor, who died in 1388.

Macarius, who restored many old foundations, printed Church books in Skadar, Venice, Belgrade and other places, built the famous refectory in the monastery at Pec, did much for the advancement of the Church with the help of his brother, Mehmed Sokolovic, and entered into rest in 1574.

Gabriel, by birth a nobleman of the Rajic family, who took part in the Moscow Council under Patriarch Nikhon, because of which he was tortured by the Turks for treason and hanged in 1656.

As well as these, there are also commemorated Eustace, Jacob, Danilo, Sava III, Gregory, John, Maxim and Nikhon. Many of them lived the ascetic life on the Holy Mountain, and all were 'gentle and faithful servants, good labourers in the Lord's vineyard'.

2. Ss Alexander, John and Paul, Patriarchs of Constantinople.

Alexander took part in the First Ecumenical Council in Nicaea, in place of the aged Patriarch Metrophanes, whom he then succeeded. When certain philosophers tried to dispute with him about faith, he said to one of them: 'In the name of my Lord Jesus Christ, I command you to remain silent!', and the philosopher became dumb from that moment. By his prayers, also, Arius's life was shortened. Alexander died at the age of ninety-eight, in the year 340.

St John the Faster governed the Church in the days of the wicked Emperor Anastasius, an Acephalite heretic. He entered into rest in 595.

St Paul IV governed the Church for five years and eight months and renounced the throne to receive the Great Habit secretly, to repent of his sins when he first supported the iconoclasts. He was the predecessor of the great Tarasius, and entered into rest in the time of Irene and Constantine, in 784.

3. Our Holy Father Christopher.

An ascetic of the sixth century in the community of St Theodosius, he saw in a vision that the lamp of the monk who laboured was burning, and the lamp of the lazy monk was not.

4. St Eulalius, Bishop of Caesarea in Cappadocia.

One of St Basil's predecessors, he deprived his son of his priesthood for wearing clothing unsuited to his spiritual calling.

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