On the Sunday closest to the 11th of this month we commemorate the 350
holy Fathers of the Seventh Ecumenical Council, which gathered in Nicaea in 787 under the holy Patriarch Tarasius and during
the reign of the Empress Irene and her son, Constantine VI, to refute the Iconoclast heresy, which had received Imperial support
beginning with the Edict issued in 726 by Emperor Leo the Isaurian. Many of the holy Fathers who condemned Iconoclasm
at this Council later died as Confessors and Martyrs for the Holy Icons during the second assault of Iconoslasm in the 9th
century, especially during the reigns of Leo the Armenian and Theophilus.
The following readings below are for Sunday, October
Today's Epistle reading [Hebrews 13.7-16]:
Remember your leaders, those who spoke to you the word of
God; consider the outcome of their life, and imitate their faith. Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and for
ever. Do not be led away by diverse and strange teachings; for it is well that the heart be strengthened by grace, not
by foods, which have not benefited their adherents. We have an altar from which those who serve the tent have no right
to eat. For the bodies of those animals whose blood is brought into the sanctuary by the high priest as a sacrifice
for sin are burned outside the camp. So Jesus also suffered outside the gate in order to sanctify the people through his own
blood. Therefore let us go forth to him outside the camp, bearing abuse for him. For here we have no lasting city,
but we seek the city which is to come. Through him then let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is,
the fruit of lips that acknowledge his name. Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices
are pleasing to God.
The Gospel reading for today
went out to sow his seed; and as he sowed, some fell along the path, and was trodde3n under foot, and the birds o fthe air
devoured it. And some fell on the rock; and as it grew up, it withered away, because it had no moisture. And some
fell among thorns; and the thorns grew with it and choked it. And some fell into good soil and grew, and yielded a hundredfold."
As he said this, he called, "he who has ears to hear, let him hear."
when his disciples asked him what this parable meant, he said, "To you it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom
of God; but for others they are in parables, so that seeing they may not see, and hearing they may not understrand. Now the
parable is this: The seed is the word of God. The ones along the path are those who have heard; then the devil
comes and takes away the word from their hearts, that they may not believe and be saved. And the ones on the rock are
those who, when they hear the word, receive it with joy; but these have no root, they believe for a while and in time of temptation
fall away. And as for what fell among the thorns, they are those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked
by the cares and riches and pleasures of life, and their fruit does not mature. And as for that in the good soil, they
are those who, hearing the word, hold it fast in an honest and good heart, and bring forth fruit with patience.