8 August 2020 (MIA)
Macedonian Orthodox Church Calendar
The Holy Great-Martyr Paraskeva, nicknamed “Pyatnitsa,” lived in the Roman Empire, during the third century, in the city of Iconium. Her parents were Christians. They accorded great honor to Friday, the day of our Lord Jesus Christ’s suffering. When their daughter was born on that day, therefore, they named her Paraskeva, which translated from the Greek means “Friday.” Young Paraskeva loved the pure spirit of chastity with all her heart. She took a vow of chastity and worked to spread the Christian Faith among the heathen. In the year 300, a military leader charged by Emperor Diocletian to extirpate the Christians, entered the city. Because Paraskeva refused to offer sacrifice to the idols, she was submitted to torture. She was suspended from a tree, and was raked with iron nails. Barely alive, her flesh torn down to the bones, she was cast into a dungeon. God did not abandon the Holy Sufferer, and miraculously healed her. The malicious torturer was not enlightened by this miracle, and continued to torture St. Paraskeva. He ordered that she be hanged from a tree and burned with torches. Finally, she was beheaded with a sword. Christians buried St. Paraskeva’s body. The relics of the Great Martyr became a source of miracles.
Dominic de Guzman
Born of wealthy Spanish nobility. His mother was Blessed Joan of Aza who, when pregnant, had a vision that her unborn child was a dog who would set the world on fire with a torch it carried in its mouth; a dog bearing a torch in its mouth became a symbol for the Dominicans. At his baptism, his mother saw a star shining from his chest. Studied theology at Palencia. Canon of the church of Osma, priest and Augustinian. Lifelong apostle among heretics, especially Albigensians, and especially in France; worked with Blessed Peter of Castelnau. Founded the Order of Friars Preachers (Dominicans) in 1215, a group who live a simple, austere life, and an order of nuns dedicated to the care of young girls. At one point Dominic became discouraged at the progress of his mission; the heresies remained. But he received a vision from Our Lady who showed him a wreath of roses, and told him to say the rosary daily, and teach it to all who would listen. Eventually the true faith won out. Dominic is often credited with the invention of the rosary, but it predates him. Legend says that Dominic received a vision of a beggar who, like Dominic, would do great things for the Faith. Dominic met the beggar the next day. He embraced him and said, “You are my companion and must walk with me. If we hold together, no earthly power can withstand us.” The beggar was Saint Francis of Assisi.