Our Holy Father Gregory of Decapolis (842)
He was born in Irenopolis, one of the “Ten Cities” of Asia Minor. Though his parents wanted him to marry, he entered monastic life as a young man, and struggled for many years, living in reclusion under the guidance of a wise spiritual father. One day, while in prayer, he was carried away to Paradise and experienced the blessedness that the redeemed will know at the general Resurrection. The vision seemed to him only to last for an hour, but he learned from his disciple that he had been in ecstasy for four days.
Aware that the Enemy can appear as an angel of light, and that we should be suspicious of seeming revelations, he sought the counsel of his Abbot, who reassured him, and told him to give thanks to God by continuing in his ascetic labors.
Soon, he was told by revelation that he was to go forth into the world, living without an earthly home, to uphold the Orthodox faith, which was then under attack by the Iconoclasts. He traveled through Ephesus, Constantinople, Corinth, Rome, Sicily, Thessalonica, and Constantinople again, laboring in defense of the Faith and working many miracles. Usually he would stay with poor people who welcomed him into their houses, though it was forbidden by law to receive an Orthodox monk (that is, one who defended the Icons). In his last few years, afflicted by illness, he settled in Constantinople, where he reposed in peace in 832, just before the end of iconoclasm and the restoration of Orthodoxy. Since 1490, his incorrupt relics have dwelt at the Monastery of Bistritsa in Romania, where they continue to be a source of miracles for the many pilgrims who come to venerate them.
Our Holy Father Proclus, Archbishop of Constantinople (447)
He was a disciple and scribe of St John Chrysostom. About the year 426 he was ordained Bishop of Cyzicus, but was unable to take up his see because another had been unlawfully elected in his place, so he remained in Constantinople. Around 428, Nestorius was made Patriarch of Constantinople, and almost immediately began teaching his blasphemous doctrine that the holy Virgin could not be called Theotokos, “God-bearer,” but only Christotokos, “Christ-bearer.” Proclus resisted this teaching forcefully, once giving a sermon in the presence of the heretical Patriarch, defending the Orthodox teaching concerning the Theotokos. Proclus was elevated to the throne of Patriarch of Constantinople in 434, after Nestorius had been deposed and the Orthodox teaching clearly proclaimed in an Ecumenical Council. It was Proclus who persuaded the Emperor Theodosius the Younger to have the holy relics of his teacher St John Chrysostom returned to Constantinople, and who received them on their triumphal return to the city. He reposed in peace in 447.