Relics

2 Kings 13 v 21 And it came to pass, as they were burying a man, that, behold, they spied a band of men; and they cast the man into the sepulchre of Elisha: and when the man was let down, and touched the bones of Elisha, he revived, and stood up on his feet.

Matthew 9 v 20 And, behold, a woman, which was diseased with an issue of blood twelve years, came behind him, and touched the hem of his garment: 21 For she said within herself, If I may but touch his garment, I shall be whole. 22 But Jesus turned him about, and when he saw her, he said, Daughter, be of good comfort; thy faith hath made thee whole. And the woman was made whole from that hour.

Acts 19 v 11 And God wrought special miracles by the hands of Paul: 12 So that from his body were brought unto the sick handkerchiefs or aprons, and the diseases departed from them, and the evil spirits went out of them. 

IMG_20180203_094440 (2)A short video by Fr Spyridon on holy relics can be found by clicking here

We are very blessed to presently have on loan from our dear Fr Paul Elliott a very rare first class relic of our Patron Saint, St John of Shanghai as mounted in the icon on the photo. We are also blessed by having a number of second class relics of St John of Shanghai in our church, not lastly an Altar cloth which was used by St John in his house chapel in San Francisco: 

altar cloth

In addition to this we now have the following first class relics on long-term loan, in the church for veneration all year round but especially also on feastdays relating to them:

St John the Baptist and Forerunner

St Elisabeth, mother of St John the Baptist

St Zachariah, father of St John the Baptist 

terence-2St Mary Magdalene, as mounted below the icon of Christ within its own embellished reliquary and within the casing of the icon and On the left of the painting, balancing the Gospel book, a red enamel cross, suspended from a Patriarchal crown, contains a crystal covering a tiny piece of Rock from the Holy Sepulchre. 

at homeA single hair from the head of the Theotokos, as mounted on her icon toward its lower edge surrounded by Citrines on a  Sapphire all within the casing of her icon.

And also a Fragment of the True and Life Giving Cross as mounted toward the upper edge of the same icon of the Theotokos behind a Cabochon Rock Crystal, adorned by Garnets, on a Emerald, and within the casing of the icon. 

Furthermore, we are in the unusual and wonderful position of being able to make different relics available for veneration at different times throughout the year. These are loaned to us on a monthly rotational basis to coincide with specific feast days. Everybody is welcome to venerate these relics.

AVAILABLE RELICS AND CORONA VIRUS

We offer a unique service these days which is to place a name of a person who you would like to bring to the attention of a saint under a relic of the month for the duration of the month. Please contact Johanna to let her know by sending a little email to the effect: johannamcb@btinternet.com

It is also still possible to come here and venerate relics even in the present climate, so long as social distancing is preserved and a visit is pre-arranged for one person at a time or immediately before/during/after services.

Where possible, please wear a face mask and make use of the hand sanitizer, both of which we provide, thank you. We will be delighted to facilitate your veneration of the relics!

Month by month rotation of relics available for veneration.

The family in our parish who are the guardians of the relics we make available for veneration has set up a monthly rotational service of making available those relics of their collection, whose feast day occurs during the month in hand.

We are very grateful for this facility and wish to convey our thanks on behalf of the parish and of all who come especially to venerate the relics.

The month-by month relic list with the list of relics you can expect to find in our church during any given month can be found by clicking here.

SAINTS DAYS and calendars:

We use the Julian calendar in our church. This is the calendar which was used at the time of Christ. The Gregorian calendar is now used as the norm in the Western world. With the passage of time it diverges further from the Julian calendar. At present there are 13 days in the difference. This can cause confusion where feast dates are concerned…. For example Christmas Day is celebrated on the 25th of December in all churches. However, the ‘new’ Gregorian calendar, which is also used by the secular world, celebrates the 25th of December 13 before the 25th of December of the Julian calendar. Hence, although our Christmas is on 25th December, it appears as though our Christmas Day falls on the 7th of January.

NB.: In order for people to come to venerate saints on their feast days according to the Julian calendar, we have noted their Gregorian calendar equivalent of the day in all listings (noting the Julian Calendar date in brackets afterwards).

~

Russian Reliquary

Russian reliquiary (2)

The “Russian Reliquary” has been given to our parish on long term loan and is available for veneration. Held in trust by a family belonging to our parish, it contains ex ossibus relics of some of the most venerated Russian born Orthodox Saints including St Seraphim of Sarov, Patron of the Imperial Tsar Martyr Nicholas II and his family. This reliquary also houses relics of the following saints: Grand Prince Andrew I of Vladimir (original owner of the world renowned the Theotokos of Vladimir icon), Grand Prince Daniel of Moscow, son of St Alexander Nevsky,  Cyril of Turov, Bazil of Ryazan, Joseph of Volotsky, Paul of Obrona, Andre Rublev the Holy Iconographer, Michael of Klopsh, Fool for Christ, Barsanuphius of Tver, Cyril of Kirillo-Belozensky, and Herman of the Sloviki monastery. These relics will of course be in addition to those housed in the Icons of our Iconostasis, and any other ones held by the parish for veneration during the month of July (see list below).

Beneath the large round cabochon rock crystal, set in filigree on the outer case, is soil from Ganina Yama, the pit in which the murderers of the Imperial family,and their household, tried to dissolve their corpses with sulphuric acid and then cremate them.  This holy soil was soaked with the blood and dissolved remains of The Holy Royal Martyrs Tsar Nicholas II, Tsarina Alexandra Feodorovna, Tsarevith Alexei, and Grand Duchesses Olga, Tatiana, Maria and Anastasia. Nor should we forget that this is also a relic of the  members of the Imperial household who perished with the Romanovs, the canonised Dr Eugene Botkin, the Empress’s maid, Anna Demidova, the Emperor’s valet, Alexei Trupp, and the family chef, Ivan Khartonov.

~

Placing of names

We also offer you an innovative and different service: You now have the option of sending a name to us via email (johannamcb@btinternet.com) which can be placed with a relic of your choice for a chosen number of days. The following saints’ relics are available for this:

A

Abraham (Abramius) Archimandrite and Wonderworker of Smolensk
Ambrose of Milan, Dr. of the Church
Andrei Rublev, Iconographer
Andrew Bogolioubsky Grand Prince of Vladimir
Andrew, The First Called (2 relics)
Anne, Mother of the All Holy Theotokos
Anthony the Great (of the Desert)
Anthony of Kijev
Apollonia of Alexandria, Virgin & Martyr
Athanasius the Great, Doctor of the Church

B

Balthazar the Magi
Barbara Great Martyr
Barsanuphius of Tver
Basil the Great
Basil of Ryazan

C

Caspar the Magi
Cosmas the Unmercenary
Catherine of Alexandria Great Martyr (Ekatatina)
Christopher of Lycea (Great Martyr)
Cyril, abbot of the Kirillo-Belozersk (white lake) Monastery
Cyril of Turov

D

Damian the Unmercenary
Daniel of Moscow, Grand Prince, son of St Alexander Nevski
Demetrius of Thessalonika
Dimitri of Priluki, the monk and wonderworker

E

Ekatarina of Alexandria Great Martyr (Catherine)
Elizabeth, the Mother of St John the Forerunner and Baptist
Eusebia of Rome, otherwise Xenia
Eusebius of Rome, Martyr

G

George the Great Martyr
Gregory of Nyssa, Doctor of the Church

H

Helena The Empress, discoverer of the True Cross
Holy Column of the Flagellation
Holy Cross (3 relics)
Holy Lance of Saint Longinus
Holy Manger of the Lord
Holy Nail
Holy Sceptre (Reed) of the Lord
Holy Sepulchre
Holy Shroud of the Lord (Turin)
Holy Titulus of the True Cross
Holy Tunic of the Lord

I

Ignatius of Antioch, Doctor of the Church
Iraneus of Lyons, Doctor of the Church

J

James the Just (Brother of the Lord)
Joachim the father of the Theotokos
John the Forerunner otherwise called “the baptist”
John Chrysotom, Doctor of the Church
John of Damascus, Doctor of the Church
Joseph the Protector of the Lord (Belt)
Jude, called Thaddeus, brother of the Lord
Justin the Philosopher, otherwise called “the Martyr”

L

Lazarus of Bethany
Lucy of Syracuse, virgin martyr
Luke the Evangelist

M

Marcellus, Hieromartyr, bishop of Rome
Margaret of Antioch Great Martyr (Marina)
Marina of Antioch Great Martyr (Margaret)
Mark the Evangelist
Martha of Bethany
Mary of Bethany
Mary of Egypt
Mary Magdalene
Matthew the Evangelist and Apostle
Maximus the Confessor
Melchior the Magi

N

Nicholas of Myra
Nicandre of Egypt, Martyr

P

Patrick, Enlightener of Ireland (two ex ossibus relics)
Polycarp of Smyrna, Doctor of the Church
Pontian, Pope of Rome

S

Seraphim of Sarov, Wonderworker
Simon, the Apostle, Kinsman (‘brother’) of the Lord
Sophia of Rome (mother of Faith, Hope and Love)
Spyridon the Wonderworker (2nd class relic)
Stephen the Protomartyr

T

Terence of Carthage
THE ALL HOLY THEOTOKOS, a lock of Her hair
THE ALL HOLY THEOTOKOS, a piece of the Protecting Veil
Thomas the Apostle

U

Ursula, Virgin Martyr

X

Xenia of Rome, Virgin Martyr

Z

Zachariah, High Priest and Father of St John the Forerunner and Baptist

Many thanks!

Further scripture to ponder in relation to relics …

OLD TESTAMENT
Exodus 13 v 19:

19 And Moses took the bones of Joseph with him: for he had straitly sworn the children of Israel, saying, God will surely visit you; and ye shall carry up my bones away hence with you.

Exodus 13 v 33 – 34

33 And Moses said unto Aaron, Take a pot, and put an omer full of manna therein, and lay it up before the Lord, to be kept for your generations. 34 As the Lord commanded Moses, so Aaron laid it up before the Testimony, to be kept.

Deuteronomy 10 v 1 – 5

1At that time the Lord said unto me, Hew thee two tables of stone like unto the first, and come up unto me into the mount, and make thee an ark of wood. And I will write on the tables the words that were in the first tables which thou brakest, and thou shalt put them in the ark. And I made an ark of shittim wood, and hewed two tables of stone like unto the first, and went up into the mount, having the two tables in mine hand. And he wrote on the tables, according to the first writing, the ten commandments, which the Lord spake unto you in the mount out of the midst of the fire in the day of the assembly: and the Lord gave them unto me. And I turned myself and came down from the mount, and put the tables in the ark which I had made; and there they be, as the Lord commanded me.

NEW TESTAMENT
Acts 5:15

15 Insomuch that they brought forth the sick into the streets, and laid them on beds and couches, that at the least the shadow of Peter passing by might overshadow some of them.

Hebrews 9:3-4 (Old Covenant related)

And after the second veil, the tabernacle which is called the Holiest of all;

Which had the golden censer, and the ark of the covenant overlaid round about with gold, wherein was the golden pot that had manna, and Aaron’s rod that budded, and the tables of the covenant;