On the day of the feast of Theophany—the Baptism of the Lord—it is not out of place to remember another baptism: that baptism which was performed over each of us Orthodox Christians, that baptism at which each of us, by the mouth of our godparents, gave a promise to God that he would always renounce Satan and his works and would always unite himself, “join himself” with Christ.
This, I repeat, is especially fitting for this present day. The solemn rite of the Great Sanctification of Water will be performed shortly. Its center, its main part, one could say, is the majestic prayer wherein the Lord is glorified and the grace of the Holy Spirit is called down upon the water being sanctified. This prayer begins with the beautiful words: “Great art Thou, O Lord, and marvelous are Thy works, and no word sufficeth to hymn Thy wonders.” Whoever has been at a performance of the mystery of Baptism and was present attentively, knows that the prayer at the sanctification of the water in which a man will be baptized begins with these same words, and the first part of this prayer is completely the same, both at the Great Sanctification of Water and at the performance of the mystery of Baptism. And only later, in the last part, does the prayer at the performance of the mystery of Baptism change, as applicable to this mystery, when a new human soul will be baptized.
Bishop Teodosije of Raska-Prizren with the faithful welcomed Prime Minister of Serbia Mr. Aleksandar Vucic in Monastery Gracanica and consecrated the monument to King Milutin on 14 January 2015.
Bishop Teodosije, along with Serbian political representatives from Kosovo and Metochia and more than a thousand of Serbs welcomed in Grachanica monastery Prime Minister Mr. Aleksandar Vucic accompanied by six government ministers. While visiting the Kosovo Pomoravlje region, Prime Minister Vucic opened a maternity in Pasjane.
Basil was born during the reign of Emperor Constantine. While still unbaptized, Basil spent fifteen years in Athens where he studied philosophy, rhetoric, astronomy and all other secular sciences of that time. His colleagues at that time were Gregory the Theologian and Julian, later the apostate emperor. In his mature years he was baptized in the river Jordan along with Euvlios his former teacher. He was Bishop of Caesarea in Cappadocia for almost ten years and completed his earthly life fifty years after his birth. He was a great defender of Orthodoxy, a great light of moral purity, a religious zealot, a great theological mind, a great builder and pillar of the Church of God. Basil fully deserved the title "Great." In liturgical services, he is referred to as the "bee of the Church of Christ which brings honey to the faithful and with its stinger pricks the heretics.
On the eighth day after His Nativity, our Lord Jesus Christ was circumcised in accordance with the Old Testament Law. All male infants underwent circumcision as a sign of God’s Covenant with the holy Forefather Abraham and his descendants (Gen. 17:10-14, Lev. 12:3).
After this ritual the Divine Infant was given the name Jesus, as the Archangel Gabriel declared on the day of the Annunciation to the Most Holy Theotokos (Luke 1:31-33, 2:21). The Fathers of the Church explain that the Lord, the Creator of the Law, underwent circumcision in order to give people an example of how faithfully the divine ordinances ought to be fulfilled. The Lord was circumcised so that later no one would doubt that He had truly assumed human flesh, and that His Incarnation was not merely an illusion, as certain heretics (Docetists) taught.
Marking January 9th - The Statehood day of the Republic of Srpska and its Patron Saint-Day, Holy Hieromartyr and Archdeacon Stephen, began with the Holy Hierarchal Liturgy celebrated by His Holiness Irinej, Serbian Patriarch, in the church of Christ the Saviour in Banjaluka.
The Patriarch was welcomed by many citizens in front of the church. The Holy Liturgy was attended by President of the National Assembly of the Republic of Srpska Mr. Nedeljko Cubrilovic, Prime Minister Mrs. Zeljka Cvijanovic, Ministers in the Government of Republic of Srpska, members of Parliament, Serbian representatives in common institucions of BiH, as well as representatives of the Armed Forces of BiH.
His Holiness Serbian Patriarch irinej served yesterday, on the feast day of the Synaxis of the Most Holy Mother of God, the Holy Hierarchal Liturgy in the church of the Protection of the Most Holy Mother of God on Zvezdara, in Belgrade.