10 August 2020 (MIA)
Macedonian Orthodox Church Calendar
The Holy Apostles of the Seventy and Deacons: Prochorus, Nicanor, Timon and Parmenas
All four were of the number of the seven deacons and the seventy apostles. The other three deacons were Stephen, Philip, and Nicolas. Stephen, the first martyr, is commemorated on Dec. 27th, and Philip on Oct. 11th. Nicolas was not in the ranks of the saints because of heresy. These four are commemorated together on this day: Prochorus was consecrated by the Apostle Peter as Bishop of Nicomedia. He served for a time with St John the Evangelist and, on the island of Patmos, wrote down the Revelation he heard from St John. After that, he returned to Nicomedia, where he made great efforts to bring the people to the Faith. He died a martyr in Antioch, where he was murdered by unbelievers. Nicanor suffered in Jerusalem on the same day as St Stephen the Archdeacon, quickly followed by two hundred others, killed by the Jews. Timon was a bishop in Arabia and was crucified for Christ. Parmenas died before the eyes of the apostles, who mourned and buried him.
Third-century archdeacon of Rome and “keeper of the treasures of the church” in a time when Christianity was outlawed. On Aug. 6, 258, by decree of Emperor Valerian, Pope Saint Sixtus II and six deacons were beheaded, leaving Lawrence as the ranking Church official in Rome. While in prison awaiting execution, Sixtus reassured Lawrence he was not left behind; they would be reunited in four days. Lawrence saw this time as an opportunity to disperse the material wealth of the church before the Roman authorities could lay their hands on it. On Aug. 10 Lawrence was commanded to appear for his execution and to bring along the treasure with which he had been entrusted by the Pope. When he arrived, the archdeacon was accompanied by a multitude of Rome’s crippled, blind, sick, and indigent. He announced that these were the true treasures of the Church. Lawrence’s care for the poor, the ill, the neglected led to his patronage of them. His work to save the material wealth of the Church, including its documents, brought librarians and those in related fields to see him as a patron, and to ask for his intercession. And his incredible courage and sense of humor when grilled to death led to his patronage of cooks and comedians.