Scripture Readings (KJV)
6And he said, It is a light thing that thou shouldest be my servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and to restore the preserved of Israel: I will also give thee for a light to the Gentiles, that thou mayest be my salvation unto the end of the earth.
7Thus saith the LORD, the Redeemer of Israel, and his Holy One, to him whom man despiseth, to him whom the nation abhorreth, to a servant of rulers, Kings shall see and arise, princes also shall worship, because of the LORD that is faithful, and the Holy One of Israel, and he shall choose thee.
8Thus saith the LORD, In an acceptable time have I heard thee, and in a day of salvation have I helped thee: and I will preserve thee, and give thee for a covenant of the people, to establish the earth, to cause to inherit the desolate heritages;
9That thou mayest say to the prisoners, Go forth; to them that are in darkness, Shew yourselves. They shall feed in the ways, and their pastures shall be in all high places.
10They shall not hunger nor thirst; neither shall the heat nor sun smite them: for he that hath mercy on them shall lead them, even by the springs of water shall he guide them.
Genesis 31.3-16 (Vespers)
3And the LORD said unto Jacob, Return unto the land of thy fathers, and to thy kindred; and I will be with thee.
4And Jacob sent and called Rachel and Leah to the field unto his flock,
5And said unto them, I see your father’s countenance, that it is not toward me as before; but the God of my father hath been with me.
6And ye know that with all my power I have served your father.
7And your father hath deceived me, and changed my wages ten times; but God suffered him not to hurt me.
8If he said thus, The speckled shall be thy wages; then all the cattle bare speckled: and if he said thus, The ringstraked shall be thy hire; then bare all the cattle ringstraked.
9Thus God hath taken away the cattle of your father, and given them to me.
10And it came to pass at the time that the cattle conceived, that I lifted up mine eyes, and saw in a dream, and, behold, the rams which leaped upon the cattle were ringstraked, speckled, and grisled.
11And the angel of God spake unto me in a dream, saying, Jacob: And I said, Here am I.
12And he said, Lift up now thine eyes, and see, all the rams which leap upon the cattle are ringstraked, speckled, and grisled: for I have seen all that Laban doeth unto thee.
13I am the God of Beth-el, where thou anointedst the pillar, and where thou vowedst a vow unto me: now arise, get thee out from this land, and return unto the land of thy kindred.
14And Rachel and Leah answered and said unto him, Is there yet any portion or inheritance for us in our father’s house?
15Are we not counted of him strangers? for he hath sold us, and hath quite devoured also our money.
16For all the riches which God hath taken from our father, that is ours, and our children’s: now then, whatsoever God hath said unto thee, do.
Proverbs 21.3-21 (Vespers)
3To do justice and judgment is more acceptable to the LORD than sacrifice.
4An high look, and a proud heart, and the plowing of the wicked, is sin.
5The thoughts of the diligent tend only to plenteousness; but of every one that is hasty only to want.
6The getting of treasures by a lying tongue is a vanity tossed to and fro of them that seek death.
7The robbery of the wicked shall destroy them; because they refuse to do judgment.
8The way of man is froward and strange: but as for the pure, his work is right.
9It is better to dwell in a corner of the housetop, than with a brawling woman in a wide house.
10The soul of the wicked desireth evil: his neighbour findeth no favour in his eyes.
11When the scorner is punished, the simple is made wise: and when the wise is instructed, he receiveth knowledge.
12The righteous man wisely considereth the house of the wicked: but God overthroweth the wicked for their wickedness.
13Whoso stoppeth his ears at the cry of the poor, he also shall cry himself, but shall not be heard.
14A gift in secret pacifieth anger: and a reward in the bosom strong wrath.
15It is joy to the just to do judgment: but destruction shall be to the workers of iniquity.
16The man that wandereth out of the way of understanding shall remain in the congregation of the dead.
17He that loveth pleasure shall be a poor man: he that loveth wine and oil shall not be rich.
18The wicked shall be a ransom for the righteous, and the transgressor for the upright.
19It is better to dwell in the wilderness, than with a contentious and an angry woman.
20There is treasure to be desired and oil in the dwelling of the wise; but a foolish man spendeth it up.
21He that followeth after righteousness and mercy findeth life, righteousness, and honour.
Hieromartyr Basil of Ancyra (362)
St Basil labored for the Church during the reign of Julian the Apostate, who briefly attempted to return the Roman empire to paganism after the reign of St Constantine. The Saint had already suffered for the Faith as bishop of Anycra (now Ankara,the capital of Turkey), and when Julian came to power, fresh persecutions began. Basil openly denounced the Emperor’s anti-Christian policies, for which he was tortured and thrown in prison.
When the Emperor came to Ancyra, Basil was brought before him, and Julian urged the bishop to renounce the Faith, promising him wealth and position if he would do so. Basil replied, ‘I believe in my Christ, whom you have denied and who gave you this earthly kingdom, but He will shortly take this from you. How can you have no shame before the altar under which you were saved from death as an eight-year-old child when they sought to kill you? Therefore He will soon make this earthly kingdom from you, and your body shall not be buried when you have spewed forth your soul in bitter torments.’ The enraged Emperor ordered that seven strips be torn from Basil’s body every day, a torture which was carried out for seven days. When the Saint was once again brought before the Emperor, he tore off a strip of his own flesh and threw it to Julian, saying ‘Take this and eat it, Julian, if such food is sweet to you, but Christ is life for me.’ At this the Emperor ordered that red-hot iron spits be driven through Basil; and thus the holy bishop at last received the crown of martyrdom.
Martyr Drosida of Antioch, and five nuns (104)
‘The daughter of the Emperor Trajan, she was seized with five other women when they were gathering the bodies of the martyrs who had suffered for Christ by night, and was for this cruelly mutilated by the Emperor. The five women were terribly tortured and at last thrown into molten copper, where they surrendered their souls to their Lord. But Drosida remained under strict imperial guard. However, she escaped from the court and baptised herself in a river. After eight days she gave her soul into God’s hands.’ (Prologue)