Commemorations for Tout 16

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The Commemoration of the Consecration of the Sanctuaries of the church of Resurrection in Jerusalem.
The Translocation of the Relics of St. John Chrysostom (of the Golden Mouth).

1. The Commemoration of the Consecration of the Sanctuaries of the church of Resurrection in Jerusalem.

Today we celebrate the consecration of the sanctuaries of the church of Resurrection in Jerusalem in the year 326 A.D. In the twentieth year of the reign of Emperor Constantine and after the meeting of the Holy Council at Nicea, the saint Queen Helena told her son Constantine that she had vowed to go to Jerusalem to receive the blessings of the holy places and to search for the wood of the life-giving Cross. He rejoiced at this, gave her much money, and sent her in the company of a large number of soldiers.

When she arrived there and received the blessings of the holy places, she searched for the wood of the Cross and found it after much toil. She praised it with great veneration and paid to it much reverence and honor. She commanded the building of the sanctuaries of the Resurrection, the Golgotha, Bethlehem and the manger, the upper room of Zion, Gethsemane and other sanctuaries, and that they be inlaid with pearl and covered with gold and silver.

There was in Jerusalem a saintly bishop who advised her not to do that, saying, "After a while foreign people will come and seize this place and destroy it and take the precious stones and the silver and the gold. But it is preferable to construct the buildings well and give the remainder of the money to the poor and the needy." She accepted his advice, gave him the money and set him in charge of the work.

When she returned to her son and told him what she had done, he rejoiced, and sent large sums of money and commanded to pay the workers their wages in full so they would not complain. When the building of the holy places was finished in the thirtieth year of the reign of Emperor Constantine, he sent vessels and precious vestments for the altars. He sent word to the Archbishop of Constantinople and to St. Athanasius, Pope of Alexandria, to take their bishops and to go to Jerusalem where they would meet the Archbishop of Antioch and the Bishop of Jerusalem, to consecrate these sanctuaries.

They tarried there until the sixteenth of the month of Tute, when they consecrated all the altars that had been built. On the seventeenth day they marched with the Honorable Cross around all the holy places where they worshipped God, offered the offerings, and venerated the Cross and honored it. Then they returned to their chairs.

Their prayers be with us to the last breath. Amen.

2. The Translocation of the Relics of St. John Chrysostom (of the Golden Mouth).

On this day also the church commemorates the transfer of the relics of St. John Chrysostom (of the Golden Mouth) from the city of Komanah, where he departed in exile, to Constantinople, 30 years (1) after his departure. That was in the year 437 A.D. during the reign of Emperor Theodosius II.

His intercession be with us, and Glory be to our God, forever. Amen.

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(1)1 His biography and the commemoration of his departure is mentioned on the 17th day of the blessed month of Hatour.




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