Orthodox Calendar

July 20, 2023
Thursday of the 7th week after Pentecost

No Fast


  • Ven. Thomas of Mt Maleon
  • Holy Martyr Kyriake of Nicomedia (289)

Scripture Readings (KJV)

1 Corinthians 7.24-35 (Epistle)

24Brethren, let every man, wherein he is called, therein abide with God.

25Now concerning virgins I have no commandment of the Lord: yet I give my judgment, as one that hath obtained mercy of the Lord to be faithful. 26I suppose therefore that this is good for the present distress, I say, that it is good for a man so to be. 27Art thou bound unto a wife? seek not to be loosed. Art thou loosed from a wife? seek not a wife. 28But and if thou marry, thou hast not sinned; and if a virgin marry, she hath not sinned. Nevertheless such shall have trouble in the flesh: but I spare you. 29But this I say, brethren, the time is short: it remaineth, that both they that have wives be as though they had none; 30And they that weep, as though they wept not; and they that rejoice, as though they rejoiced not; and they that buy, as though they possessed not; 31And they that use this world, as not abusing it: for the fashion of this world passeth away. 32But I would have you without carefulness. He that is unmarried careth for the things that belong to the Lord, how he may please the Lord: 33But he that is married careth for the things that are of the world, how he may please his wife. 34There is difference also between a wife and a virgin. The unmarried woman careth for the things of the Lord, that she may be holy both in body and in spirit: but she that is married careth for the things of the world, how she may please her husband. 35And this I speak for your own profit; not that I may cast a snare upon you, but for that which is comely, and that ye may attend upon the Lord without distraction.

Matthew 15.12-21 (Gospel)

12Then came his disciples, and said unto him, Knowest thou that the Pharisees were offended, after they heard this saying? 13But he answered and said, Every plant, which my heavenly Father hath not planted, shall be rooted up. 14Let them alone: they be blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch. 15Then answered Peter and said unto him, Declare unto us this parable. 16And Jesus said, Are ye also yet without understanding? 17Do not ye yet understand, that whatsoever entereth in at the mouth goeth into the belly, and is cast out into the draught? 18But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man. 19For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies: 20These are the things which defile a man: but to eat with unwashen hands defileth not a man.

21Then Jesus went thence, and departed into the coasts of Tyre and Sidon.


St Thomas of Mt Maleon (10th c.)

He was a renowned general, known for his great size and courage, his many victories against barbarian enemies, and his considerable wealth. But, forsaking wealth and reputation to follow Christ, he retired to the desert to live in asceticism. The Prophet Elias appeared to him and, accompanied by a pillar of fire, led him to Mount Maleon, near the Holy Mountain. There he lived in solitude, giving his days and nights to prayer. Like so many who seek to hide their holiness from the world, he was discovered, and people began to come to him for healing of their ailments and those of their loved ones. The saint healed countless ailments, drove out demons, cured the blind, and made water to pour forth from barren earth. In prayer he appeared as a pillar of fire. He reposed in peace, and his relics continued to be a powerful source of healing.

Holy Martyr Kyriake of Nicomedia (289)

Dorotheos and Eusebia, a devout, aging Christian couple who lived in Anatolia, had no children. After many years, their fervent prayers for a child were answered, and they were blessed with a daughter, whom they named Kyriake (‘Sunday’ in Greek) because she was born on the Lord’s day. The child grew up beautiful in body and soul and, though she had many suitors, chose to consecrate herself entirely to God and remain single. One of her suitors, angered at her refusal, denounced her and her parents to the Emperor Diocletian. Dorotheos and Eusebia were subjected to cruel tortures, then sent into exile, where they died under further torture. Kyriake was sent to Maximian, Diocletian’s son-in-law, for trial. By his orders, she was subjected to a horrifying series of torments; but Christ Himself appeared to her in prison, healing and comforting her. Many pagans came to believe in Christ when they saw her miraculously saved from death by fire or from wild beasts; all of these were beheaded. Kyriake told Apollonius, the general who supervised her tortures: ‘There is no way that you can turn me from my faith. Throw me into the fire — I have the example of the Three Children. Throw me to the wild beasts — I have the example of Daniel. Throw me into the sea — I have the example of Jonah the Prophet. Put me to the sword — I will remember the honored Forerunner. For me, to die is life in Christ.’ Apollonius then ordered that she be beheaded. At the place of execution, she raised her hands in prayer and gave up her soul to God before the executioner could take her life.

Note: St Kyriake is also known as Dominica or Nedelja, Latin and Slavonic words for ‘Sunday’.