May 12 Our Fathers among the saints Epiphanius, Bishop of Cyprus and Germanus, Patriarch of Constantinople

Bulletin as of May 11 2023

Our holy father Epiphanius, Bishop of Cyprus, “a last relic of ancient piety,” as St. Jerome calls him, lived during the fourth century in Phoenicia. The Roman empress Honoria was his sister. He was of Jewish descent, and in his youth he received a fine education. He was converted to Christianity after seeing how a monk named Lucian gave away his clothing to a poor person. Struck with the monk’s compassion, Epiphanius asked to be instructed in Christianity. 

Our holy father Germanus, Patriarch of Constantinople, was born at Constantinople in the seventh century. His father, a prominent senator, was killed by order of the emperor Constantine Pogonatos (668-685). Because of the sanctity of his life, Germanus was made bishop in the city of Cyzicus. St. Germanus rose up in defense of the Orthodox Faith against the iconoclast heretics. He was later made patriarch of Constantinople. St. Germanus continued to stand up against the iconoclasts and to their spokesman, the heretical emperor Leo III the Isaurian (717-741). He went to a monastery, where he spent the remainder of his life. The holy Patriarch Germanus died in the year 740, at age ninety-five, and was buried in the Chora monastery in Constantinople. Afterwards, his relics were transferred to France.



O God of our ancestors, You always deal with us according to your everlasting compassion, take not your mercy away from us; but through the prayers of our ancestors, guide our lives along the ways of peace. 



O faithful, let us sing a worthy hymn of praise in honor of the two glorious bishops, Epiphanius and Germanus. They enlightened the minds of those without faith, and to the faithful they presented God’s great mysteries, explaining true belief with great wisdom.



Acts 15: 5-12

In those days, some of the converted Pharisess then got up and demanded that such Gentiles be circumcised and told to keep Mosaic law. The apostles and the presbyters accordingly convened to look into the matter. After much discussion, Peter took the floor and said to them: “Brothers, you know well enough that from the early days God selected me from your number to be the one whose lips the Gentile would hear the message of the gospel and believe. God, who reads the hearts of men, showed his approval by granting the Holy Spirit to them just as he did to us. He made no distinction between them and us, but purified their hearts by means of faith also. Why, then, do you put God to the test by trying to place on the shoulders of these converts a yoke which neither we nor our fathers were able to bear? Our belief is rather that we are saved by the favor of the Lord Jesus and so are they.” At that the whole assembly fell silent. They listened to Barnabas and Paul as the two described all the signs and wonders God had worked among the Gentiles through them. 



John 10: 17-28

The Lord said to the people coming to him: “The Father loves me for this: that I lay down my life to take it up again. No one takes it from me; I lay it down freely. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it up again. This command I received from my Father.”

Because of these words, the Jews were sharply divided once more. Many were claiming: “He is possessed by a devil – out of his mind! Why pay attention to him?” Others maintained: “These are not the words of a madman. Surely a devil cannot open the eyes of the blind!”

It was winter, and the time came for the feast of the Dedication in Jerusalem. Jesus was walking in the temple area, in Solomon’s Portico, when the Jews gathered around him and said, “How long are you going to keep us in suspense? If you really are the Messiah, tell us so in plain words.” Jesus answered: “I did tell you, but you do not believe. The works I do in my Father’s name give witness in my favor, but you refuse to believe because you are not my sheep. My sheep hear my voice. I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish.”


Icon courtesy of Jack Figel, Eastern Christian Publications –


Thursday, May 11 –

  • 4:00 PM