July 9 The Holy Martyr Pancratius, Bishop of Toarmina

Bulletin as of July 8 2024

The hieromartyr Pancratius, Bishop of Taormina, was born when our Lord Jesus Christ yet lived upon the earth. The parents of Pancratius were natives of Antioch. Hearing the good news of Jesus Christ, Pancratius’ father took his young son with him to Jerusalem to see the greater Teacher for himself. It was during this period that the young Pancratius got to know the Apostle Peter. After the Ascension of our Lord, one of the apostles came to Antioch and baptized the parents of Pancratius together with all the household. When his parents died, Pancratius left behind his inherited possessions and went to Pontus and began living in a cave. He spent his days in prayer and deep contemplation. The holy Apostle Peter, while passing through those parts, visited Pancratius at Pontus. He took him along to Antioch, and then to Sicily, where the holy Apostle Paul then was. There, Saints Peter and Paul made St. Pancratius the bishop of Taormina in Sicily.  



Like an arrow on fire, you were aimed at Taormina to kill the godless and to bring light to the faithful. You strengthened them in the faith by your preaching, and you finished your work by spilling your blood. O martyred priest Pancratius, pray for your flock and for all who cherish your memory. 



You appeared to the people of Taormina as a star, and you became a priest-martyr for Christ, O Pancratius. As you stand before Him, pray for us who love you. 



1st Corinthians 10: 5-12

Brothers and sisters: We know that God was not pleased with most of [our fathers], for “they were struck down in the desert.”

These things happened as an example to keep us from wicked desires such as theirs. Do not become idolators, as some of them did. Scripture says, “The people sat down to eat and drink, and arose to take their pleasure.” let us not indulge in lewdness as some of them did, so that in one day twenty-three thousand perished. Let us not test the Lord as some of them did, only to be destroyed by snakes. Nor are you to grumble as some of them did, to be killed by the destroying angel. The things that happened to them serve as an example. They have been written as a warning to us, upon whom the end of the ages has come. For all these reasons, let anyone who thinks he is standing upright watch out lest he fall!



Matthew 16: 6-12

The Lord said to his disciples: “Be on the lookout against the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.” They could think only, “This is because we have brought no bread.” Jesus knew their thoughts and said, “Why do you suppose it is because you have no bread? How weak your faith is! Do you still not understand? Do you not remember the five loaves among the five thousand and how many baskets-full you picked up? Or the seven loaves among the four thousand and how many hampers-full you retrieved? Why is it you do not see that I was not speaking about bread at all but warning you against the yeast of the Pharisees?” They finally realized he was not issuing a warning against yeast used for bread but against the teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees. 


Icon courtesy of Jack Figel, Eastern Christian Publications – ecpubs.com


Monday, July 8 –

  • 5:00 PM