Nativity Fast

Daily Readings for 11/21/21 during the Nativity Fast

Prayer Before Reading Holy Scripture

O Master Who loves mankind, illuminate our hearts with the pure light of Your divine knowledge and open the eyes of our mind to understand the teachings of Your Gospel. Instill in us also the fear of Your blessed commandments, that we may overcome all carnal desires, entering upon a spiritual life and understanding and acting in all things according to Your holy will. For You are the enlightenment of our souls and bodies, O Christ God, and to You we give glory together with Your eternal Father and Your all-holy, gracious and life-giving Spirit, now and ever and forever. Amen.

Epistle Reading: Galatians 6:11-18

See with what large letters I have written to you with my own hand!

As many as desire to make a good showing in the flesh, these try to compel you to be circumcised, only that they may not suffer persecution for the cross of Christ.

For not even those who are circumcised keep the law, but they desire to have you circumcised that they may glory in your flesh.

But God forbid that I should glory except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.

For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, but a new creation.

And as many as walk according to this rule, peace and mercy be upon them, and upon the Israel of God.

From now on let no one trouble me, for I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus.

Brethren, the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Amen.

Epistle Reading: Hebrews 2:2-10

For if the word spoken through angels proved steadfast, and every transgression and disobedience received a just reward,

how shall we escape if we neglect so great a salvation, which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed to us by those who heard Him,

God also bearing witness both with signs and wonders, with various miracles, and gifts of the Holy Spirit, according to His own will?

For He has not put the world to come, of which we speak, in subjection to angels.

But one testified in a certain place, saying: “What is man that You are mindful of him, or the son of man that You take care of him?

You made him a little lower than the angels; You crowned him with glory and honor, and set him over the works of Your hands.

You have put all things in subjection under his feet.” For in that He put all in subjection under him, He left nothing that is not put under him. But now we do not yet see all things put under him.

But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels, for the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, that He, by the grace of God, might taste death for everyone.

For it was fitting for Him, for whom are all things and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons to glory, to make the author of their salvation perfect through sufferings.

Gospel Reading: Luke 8:41-56

And behold, there came a man named Jairus, and he was a ruler of the synagogue. And he fell down at Jesus’ feet and begged Him to come to his house,

for he had an only daughter about twelve years of age, and she was dying. But as He went, the multitudes thronged Him.

Now a woman, having a flow of blood for twelve years, who had spent all her livelihood on physicians and could not be healed by any,

came from behind and touched the border of His garment. And immediately her flow of blood stopped.

And Jesus said, “Who touched Me?” When all denied it, Peter and those with him said, “Master, the multitudes throng You and press You, and You say, ‘Who touched Me?’ “

But Jesus said, “Somebody touched Me, for I perceived power going out from Me.”

Now when the woman saw that she was not hidden, she came trembling; and falling down before Him, she declared to Him in the presence of all the people the reason she had touched Him and how she was healed immediately.

And He said to her, “Daughter, be of good cheer; your faith has made you well. Go in peace.”

While He was still speaking, someone came from the ruler of the synagogue’s house, saying to him, “Your daughter is dead. Do not trouble the Teacher.”

But when Jesus heard it, He answered him, saying, “Do not be afraid; only believe, and she will be made well.”

When He came into the house, He permitted no one to go in except Peter, James, and John, and the father and mother of the girl.

Now all wept and mourned for her; but He said, “Do not weep; she is not dead, but sleeping.”

And they laughed Him to scorn, knowing that she was dead.

But He put them all out, took her by the hand and called, saying, “Little girl, arise.”

Then her spirit returned, and she arose immediately. And He commanded that she be given something to eat.

And her parents were astonished, but He charged them to tell no one what had happened.

Gospel Reading: Luke 10:16-21

“He who hears you hears Me, he who rejects you rejects Me, and he who rejects Me rejects Him who sent Me.”

Then the seventy returned with joy, saying, “Lord, even the demons are subject to us in Your name.”

And He said to them, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven.

“Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you.

“Nevertheless do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rather rejoice because your names are written in heaven.”

In that hour Jesus rejoiced in the Spirit and said, “I praise You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that You have hidden these things from the wise and prudent and revealed them to babes. Even so, Father, for so it seemed good in Your sight.

Saints and Feasts

Synaxis of the Archangel Michael & the other Bodiless Powers: Gabriel, Raphael, Uriel, Salaphiel, Jegudiel, & Barachiel

Sayings From The Church Fathers

If you wish not to fall away from the love of God, do not let your brother go to bed feeling irritated with you, and do not go to bed yourself feeling irritated with him. Reconcile yourself with your brother, and then come to Christ with a clear conscience and offer Him your gift of love in earnest prayer (cf. Matt. 5:24).

– St. Maximos the Confessor, from First Century on Love no. 53, The Philokalia Vol. 2 edited by Palmer, Sherrard and Ware; Faber and Faber pg. 58

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