Saint Chariton the Confessor
St Chariton the Confessor suffered at Iconium during one of the persecutions against Christians under the emperor Aurelian. The grace-bearing example of the holy Protomartyr Thekla (commemorated September 24) encouraged him in his confessor’s deed. She being a native of his city, whose memory he in particular deeply venerated. St Chariton bravely denounced the pagan gods and staunchly confessed faith in the One True God, Christ the Saviour. The holy Confessor underwent fierce tortures but, through the Providence of God, he remained alive. When the persecution abated, the Saint was set free from prison and he dedicated all his life to the service of the Lord.
Journeying to Jerusalem on pilgrimage to the holy places, he fell into the hands of robbers. They tied him up and threw him in a cave, intending to kill him later, and they hastened away on business. The Saint prayed fervently in expectation of death. He gave thanks to God and entreated him to do with him according to His will. At this time a snake crawled into the cave and began to drink wine from a vessel setting there, poisoning it with its deadly venom. Returning to the cave, the robbers drank the poisoned wine and they all perished. St Chariton gave thanks to God and began his ascetic struggles at the place of his miraculous rescue. He distributed the plundered gold of the robbers to the poor, and in the robbers cave he built a church, around which in time there formed a monastery, the renowned Pharan Lavra in Palestine.
St Chariton compiled a strict rule for his monastery. Yearning for solitude, the monk went farther into the desert, but there also he did not reject those who sought his spiritual guidance, and he founded the monasteries Jericho and the Souka, named the “Old Lavra”. At the end of his life, St Chariton struggled in a cave on a hill near the Souka monastery, but he did not cease to provide guidance for all three of the monasteries he founded.
According to Tradition, St Chariton compiled the office of taking monastic vows. The Saint died in extreme old age and was buried, in accord with his last wishes, in the Pharan monastery in the church, built on the site of the robbers’ cave.
Dismissal Hymn (Fourth Tone)
With the rivers of your tears, you have made the barren desert fertile. Through sighs of sorrow from deep within you, your labours have borne fruit a hundred-fold. By your miracles, you have become a light, shining upon the world. O Chariton, our Holy Father, pray to Christ our God, to save our souls.
Kontakion (Second Tone)
Delighting in abstinence, O godly-minded one, and reining in the desires of your flesh, you were seen to be increasing in faith. And you blossomed forth like the tree of life in the midst of Eden, O all-blessed and most sacred Chariton.
Baruch the Prophet
The Prophet Baruch was the son of Nerias, and the disciple of the Prophet Jeremias ( Jer. 39:12; 43:4 LXX). The extant prophetical book that he wrote is divided into five chapters; it was composed in the fifth year of the Babylonian Captivity of the Jews during the years of Sedekias, 583 B.C. The prophetic lection that is read on the eve of the Feast of Christ’s Nativity, which bears Jeremias’ name, is taken from the prophecy of Baruch (Bar. 3:35-4:4). His name means “blessed.”
Apolytikion of Prophet Baruch in the Fourth Tone
Thou didst foretell the Lord’s divine Incarnation when thou didst cry out to the whole world, O Prophet: This is our God, there shall be none compared to Him; He was seen upon the earth, being born of a Virgin: He hath shone upon our souls the divine light of knowledge. And He doth grant salvation unto all who sing thy praise, O divinely-inspired Baruch.
Kontakion of Prophet Baruch in the Second Tone
As thou was vouchsafed the shining rays of prophecy, thou also wast bound to Jeremias as his friend, and foretoldest of the Word’s self-abasement for our refashioning, O all-lauded Prophet Baruch. Entreat Him to save us all, who honour thee.
Also Celebrating Today:
- Our Righteous Father Alkeisonus, Metropolitan of Nicopolis; Old Epirus
- Neophytos & Auxentios the Martyrs of Cyprus
- Wenceslaus the Martyr, Prince of the Czechs