Daily Readings

We believe in one God, God the Father, the Almighty, Who created heaven and earth,
and all things, seen and unseen.


The Sixteenth Day of the Blessed Month of Mesore


Vespers Gospel

Stand in the fear of God and listen to the Holy Gospel. A reading from the Gospel according to our teacher Saint Luke the Evangelist. May His Blessings be with us all. From the Psalms of our teacher David the prophet. May his blessings be with us all.
Psalms 5:6,11

You shall destroy those who speak falsehood; The LORD abhors the bloodthirsty and deceitful man. But let all those rejoice who put their trust in You; Let them ever shout for joy, because You defend them; Let those also who love Your name Be joyful in You.

Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord. Our Lord God, Savior, and King of us all, Jesus Christ, the Living Son of God to whom be glory forever. Amen.
Luke 11:27-36

And it happened, as He spoke these things, that a certain woman from the crowd raised her voice and said to Him, “Blessed is the womb that bore You, and the breasts which nursed You!” But He said, “More than that, blessed are those who hear the word of God and keep it!” And while the crowds were thickly gathered together, He began to say, “This is an evil generation. It seeks a sign, and no sign will be given to it except the sign of Jonah the prophet. For as Jonah became a sign to the Ninevites, so also the Son of Man will be to this generation. The queen of the South will rise up in the judgment with the men of this generation and condemn them, for she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and indeed a greater than Solomon is here. The men of Nineveh will rise up in the judgment with this generation and condemn it, for they repented at the preaching of Jonah; and indeed a greater than Jonah is here. “No one, when he has lit a lamp, puts it in a secret place or under a basket, but on a lampstand, that those who come in may see the light. The lamp of the body is the eye. Therefore, when your eye is good, your whole body also is full of light. But when your eye is bad, your body also is full of darkness. Therefore take heed that the light which is in you is not darkness. If then your whole body is full of light, having no part dark, the whole body will be full of light, as when the bright shining of a lamp gives you light.”
And Glory be to God forever


Matins Gospel

Stand in the fear of God and listen to the Holy Gospel. A reading from the Gospel according to our teacher Saint Luke the Evangelist. May His Blessings be with us all. From the Psalms of our teacher David the prophet. May his blessings be with us all.
Psalms 14:1,2

LORD, who may abide in Your tabernacle? Who may dwell in Your holy hill? He who walks uprightly, And works righteousness, And speaks the truth in his heart;

Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord. Our Lord God, Savior, and King of us all, Jesus Christ, the Living Son of God to whom be glory forever. Amen.
Luke 24:1-12

Now on the first day of the week, very early in the morning, they, and certain other women with them, came to the tomb bringing the spices which they had prepared. But they found the stone rolled away from the tomb. Then they went in and did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. And it happened, as they were greatly perplexed about this, that behold, two men stood by them in shining garments. Then, as they were afraid and bowed their faces to the earth, they said to them, “Why do you seek the living among the dead? He is not here, but is risen! Remember how He spoke to you when He was still in Galilee, saying, The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again.” And they remembered His words. Then they returned from the tomb and told all these things to the eleven and to all the rest. It was Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and the other women with them, who told these things to the apostles. And their words seemed to them like idle tales, and they did not believe them. But Peter arose and ran to the tomb; and stooping down, he saw the linen cloths lying by themselves; and he departed, marveling to himself at what had happened.
And Glory be to God forever

Divine Liturgy

Pauline Epistle

Paul, the servant of our Lord Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, appointed to the Gospel of God. A reading from the Epistle of our teacher Paul to the Romans. May his blessings be upon us. Amen
Romans 16:17-20

Now I urge you, brethren, note those who cause divisions and offenses, contrary to the doctrine which you learned, and avoid them. For those who are such do not serve our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly, and by smooth words and flattering speech deceive the hearts of the simple. For your obedience has become known to all. Therefore I am glad on your behalf; but I want you to be wise in what is good, and simple concerning evil. And the God of peace will crush Satan under your feet shortly. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Amen.
The grace of God the Father be with you all. Amen.

Catholic Epistle

A Reading from the 1 Epistle of St. Peter. May his blessing be upon us. Amen
1 Peter 2:18-3:7

Servants, be submissive to your masters with all fear, not only to the good and gentle, but also to the harsh. For this is commendable, if because of conscience toward God one endures grief, suffering wrongfully. For what credit is it if, when you are beaten for your faults, you take it patiently? But when you do good and suffer, if you take it patiently, this is commendable before God. For to this you were called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps: “Who committed no sin, Nor was deceit found in His mouth”; who, when He was reviled, did not revile in return; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but committed Himself to Him who judges righteously; who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousnessby whose stripes you were healed. For you were like sheep going astray, but have now returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls. Wives, likewise, be submissive to your own husbands, that even if some do not obey the word, they, without a word, may be won by the conduct of their wives, when they observe your chaste conduct accompanied by fear. Do not let your adornment be merely outwardarranging the hair, wearing gold, or putting on fine apparel rather let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God. For in this manner, in former times, the holy women who trusted in God also adorned themselves, being submissive to their own husbands, as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord, whose daughters you are if you do good and are not afraid with any terror. Husbands, likewise, dwell with them with understanding, giving honor to the wife, as to the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life, that your prayers may not be hindered.
Do not love the world or the things in the world. The world passes away, and its desires; but he who does the will of God abides forever. Amen.

Acts of the Apostles

The Acts of our fathers the apostles, may their blessings be with us.
Acts of the Apostles 21:8-14

On the next day we who were Pauls companions departed and came to Caesarea, and entered the house of Philip the evangelist, who was one of the seven, and stayed with him. Now this man had four virgin daughters who prophesied. And as we stayed many days, a certain prophet named Agabus came down from Judea. When he had come to us, he took Pauls belt, bound his own hands and feet, and said, “Thus says the Holy Spirit, So shall the Jews at Jerusalem bind the man who owns this belt, and deliver him into the hands of the Gentiles.” Now when we heard these things, both we and those from that place pleaded with him not to go up to Jerusalem. Then Paul answered, “What do you mean by weeping and breaking my heart? For I am ready not only to be bound, but also to die at Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus.” So when he would not be persuaded, we ceased, saying, “The will of the Lord be done.”
The word of the Lord shall grow, multiply, be mighty, and be confirmed, in the holy Church of God. Amen.


The Sixteenth Day of the Blessed Coptic Month of Mesore, may God make it always received, year after year, with reassurance and tranquility, while our sins are forgiven by the tender mercies of our God my fathers and brothers, Amen.
Departure of Pope Matthew IV (1660-1675) the 102nd Patriarch of Alexandria and the See of Saint Mark
On this day also, of the year 1391 A.M. (August 15, 1675 A.D.) Pope Mattias IV (Mattheos), 102nd Patriarch, departed. He was known as Matta El-Meeri. This father was born to pious Christian parents, who were righteous, merciful and benevolent. They were of the rich people of the city of Meer, Ashmonain district, the diocese of Qousqam, which is known as El-Mouharaq. They had vast farm land and live-stock. They had three boys, one of them was this righteous Father. He was the closest to his parents, and his name was Guirguis. They raised him with prudence, and brought him up with good manners and decency. They never asked him, as they did his brothers, to work on the farm, or attend to the live-stock. Instead he dedicated himself to reading and learning until he became more informed about the Holy books than his contemporaries. He was able to explain and interpret their meanings to those who had difficulties with them.
When he grew up, he renounced this vain world and went to the monastery of St. Mary known as ‘El-Baramos’ in the wilderness of Sheahat (Scetis), where he stayed for six years. He saw in a dream that his parents were grieved over him for they thought that he was dead, since they had not found him. Immediately he informed his brothers in the monastery who advised him to go to his home-town to see his parents. He went to Meer and greeted his parents who became exceedingly happy when they saw him alive. Afterwards, they wished to wed him, but when the Saint learned from a friend what his parents intended to do, he escaped and returned again to the monastery.

The monks welcomed him back with great joy. He lived with these holy men in love and faithful service, so they nominated him to the monastic rank. Then he was ordained a priest for the monastery, and after a short time, he wore the Eskeem. He exhausted himself with vigilance, prayers, worships, and kneeling more than was required from the other monks. He fasted from sunset to the sunset of the
next day and in the winter he fasted two days at a time. He kept this manner all the days of his life until he realized the favor of God, because of his good deeds, acceptable worship, and asceticism. When Pope Marcos VI, 101St Patriarch, departed, the bishops, priests, and the lay leaders sought a new righteous shepherd to ordain in his place. They asked the monks of the wilderness and the
monasteries to guide them to one fit for this position. The monks guided them to this father. When they asked him to come to Misr (Cairo), he refused to comply with their request. So they were forced to send a soldier from the government, who seized him, and brought him to Misr. Meanwhile the people of Misr (Cairo) seized another righteous priest called John, and wanted to ordain him Patriarch, and as a result of that a conflict developed. The governor apprehended the two
candidates and imprisoned them for forty days. When the matter prolonged, the bishops met and decided to cast an altar lot which was done before all the congregation. The soldiers also cast among them another lot in the government building. Each time they drew the lot it fell on Guirguis. One night the soldiers of the governor saw a burning candle hovering over Father Guirguis’ head while he was in prison. Finally they nominated this father after the considerable contention, and all the congregation was pleased. He was ordained on Sunday, 30th of Hatour, 1377 A.M. (Dec. 6th, 1660 A.D.) during the reign of the Ottoman Sultan, Mohammed IV. The celebration of his ordination was a splendid and grand celebration which was attended by many of the other Christian denominations. When he was enthroned as the Patriarch in the Patriarchal cell at
Haret-Zewailah, he considered marital and family matters, and church affairs in stern, just and fair judgments. He was meek and humble, disliked attention and exaltedness, so he never sat on a chair in the church, but stood beside it until the end of the service. He visited widows, orphans, and prisoners, and cared for the monks in the monastery, fulfilling their needs. He cherished the monasteries and the churches, as he lived a simple life as those monks lived in the wilderness. During his papacy the church was in peace and tranquility and the church was enlightened with his grace. In the year 1387 A.M. (1671 A.D.), a grievous plague befell Egypt, which perished many. He ordained two successive metropolitans for Ethiopia after the departure of its Metropolitan Youanis the Thirteenth. The first was Anba Khristozollo II, who remained on the chair from 1665 to 1672 A.D., during the reign of King Wasilidis. The second was Anba Shenouda I, who remained on the chair from 1672 to 1694 A.D. during the time of John I.

Pope Mattias IV, was the last to dwell in the patriarchal cell at Haret-Zewailah for he moved his residency to Haret-El-Roum in 1660 A.D. just after his ordination. During his papacy Pope Mattias endured some hardships:

+ The devil entered the heart of a Christian man and motivated him to go to the tax collector to over tax the Christians, which put a great burden on them. They complained to the Pope, who sent for the tax collector. The Pope forbade him, but he did not cease his wicked act. The Pope ex-communicated him, and the man died a horrible death.
+ Another time, a woman came to the pope complaining that her husband had divorced her and married another woman. The Pope sent for him and asked him to come with his second wife. When this man came, the Pope ordered them to be separated, but the second wife refused saying, ‘How can that be while I am pregnant with his child?’ Then the Pope said, ‘The Lord Christ will judge between the two marriages.’ Just as the second woman left the Pope’s cell, she aborted and the fetus came out of her womb. A great fear transpired because of this incident. The man separated from her and returned to his first wife. Pope Mattias became respected, honored, and revered by his people.
+ Another time, some infidels wanted to demolish St. Marcurius’ ‘of the two swords,’ Church at old Cairo. They went to the governmental office and appointed someone in charge of this matter. When the Pope heard about their intentions, he grieved much and spent that night’s vigil beseeching God, and interceding with St. Marcurius to annul their conspiracy and save the church from destruction. While the soldiers were asleep around the church, a wall fell on them. They all died, and the news spread around the city. The wicked conspiracy was annulled and everyone glorified God.

During Pope Mattias’ days, the enemy of good, stirred up the unbelievers against the Christians. But Christ, to Whom is the Glory, always vanquished their council and perished them through the prayers of Pope Mattias, for he shepherded the flock of Christ faithfully. When the time of his departure drew near, he went to the tomb of the Patriarchs in Misr and said to it, ‘Open and receive me so I can dwell with my righteous brothers.’ After he returned to his residence,
he fell sick with the illness of death. He called the bishops and priests and commended them on the flock of Christ. He also called the Abbess of the convent and gave her all he had, and asked her to hand them to his successor, as they were the property of the church. Then he departed in peace at a good old age, after he had remained on the chair of St. Mark for fourteen years, eight months, and nine days. He was seventy-five years old and was buried in the tomb of the Patriarchs in the church of St. Marcurius in Old Cairo. The chair remained vacant after him for seven months.
May his prayers be with us and Glory be to our God forever. Amen.

Assumption of the Body of Holy Virgin Theotokos Saint Mary
On this day, was the assumption of the body of our pure Lady St. Mary, the Mother of God. While she was keeping vigil, praying in the Holy Sepulcher, and waiting for the happy minute of her liberation from the bonds of the flesh, the Holy Spirit informed her of her forthcoming departure from this vain world. When the time drew near, the disciples and the virgins of the Mt. of Olives (Zeiton) came and the Lady was lying on her bed. Our Lord, surrounded by thousands and thousands of angels, came to Her. He consoled her, and announced her with the everlasting joy which was prepared for Her. She was happy, and she stretched out her hands, blessed the Disciples, and the Virgins. Then, she delivered up her pure soul in the hand of her Son and God, Jesus Christ, Who ascended her to the higher habitations. As of the pure body, they shrouded it and carried it to Gethsemane. On their way, some of the Jews blocked the way in the face of the disciples to prevent the burial. One of them seized the coffin. His hands were separated from his body, and remained hanging until he believed and repented for his mischievous deed. With the prayers of the holy disciples, his hands were
reattached to his body as they had been before. St. Thomas was absent at the time of St. Mary’s departure, but he came after the burial. On his way back to Jerusalem, St. Thomas saw angels carrying St. Mary’s pure body and ascending with it to heaven, and one of the angels said to him, ‘Hurry and kiss the pure body of St. Mary.’ When he arrived to the disciples, they informed him about St. Mary’s departure. He told them, ‘I will not believe, unless I see her body, as you all know how I did doubt the Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ before.’ They took him to the tomb, to uncover the body but they did not find it, and they were perplexed and amazed. St. Thomas told them how he saw the pure body ascending to heaven, carried by angels. The Holy Spirit then told them, ‘The Lord did not Will to leave Her Holy body on earth.’ The Lord had promised his pure apostles that they would see her in flesh another time. They were waiting for the fulfillment of this truthful promise, until the sixteenth day of the month of Misra, when the promise of seeing her was fulfilled. They saw her sitting on the right hand of her Son and her Lord, surrounded by the angelic Host, as David prophesied and said, ‘At your right hand stands the queen.’ (Psalm 45:9) St. Mary’s life on earth was sixty years. She spent twelve years of them in the temple, thirty years in the house of the righteous St. Joseph, and fourteen years in the care of St. John the Evangelist, as the Lord commanded her saying, ‘Woman behold your Son,’ and to St. John, ‘Behold your Mother.’
May Her intercession be with us. Amen.

Divine Liturgy Gospel

Stand in the fear of God and listen to the Holy Gospel. A reading from the Gospel according to our teacher Saint Mark the Evangelist. May His Blessings be with us all. From the Psalms of our teacher David the prophet. May his blessings be with us all.
Psalms 27:2,7,6

Hear the voice of my supplications When I cry to You, When I lift up my hands toward Your holy sanctuary. The LORD is my strength and my shield; My heart trusted in Him, and I am helped; Therefore my heart greatly rejoices, And with my song I will praise Him. Blessed be the LORD, Because He has heard the voice of my supplications!

Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord. Our Lord God, Savior, and King of us all, Jesus Christ, the Living Son of God to whom be glory forever. Amen.
Mark 3:22-35

And the scribes who came down from Jerusalem said, “He has Beelzebub,”and, “By the ruler of the demons He casts out demons.” So He called them to Himself and said to them in parables: “How can Satan cast out Satan? If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. And if a house is divided against itself, that house cannot stand. And if Satan has risen up against himself, and is divided, he cannot stand, but has an end. No one can enter a strong mans house and plunder his goods, unless he first binds the strong man. And then he will plunder his house. “Assuredly, I say to you, all sins will be forgiven the sons of men, and whatever blasphemies they may utter; but he who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit never has forgiveness, but is subject to eternal condemnation” because they said, “He has an unclean spirit.” Then His brothers and His mother came, and standing outside they sent to Him, calling Him. And a multitude was sitting around Him; and they said to Him, “Look, Your mother and Your brothers are outside seeking You.” But He answered them, saying, “Who is My mother, or My brothers?” And He looked around in a circle at those who sat about Him, and said, “Here are My mother and My brothers! For whoever does the will of God is My brother and My sister and mother.”
And Glory be to God forever