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 Parton 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!

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.

April 2021 list
7th.   The Annunciation (Holy Veil and a Hair of the Theotokos)     
                       
12th   The Meeting of the Theotokos and Saint Elizabeth (Holy Veil and Hair of the Theotokos, and ex ossibus relics of               Saintst  Elizabeth, Zachariah and John the Baptist)  
 
14th     Saint Mary of Egypt (commemoration of her departing) (ex ossibus relic}       
 
18th     Sunday of St Mary of Egypt -5th Sunday of Lent. (ex ossibus)    
 
24th     Saint Lazarus Saturday (ex ossibus relics of Sts Lazarus, Martha and Mary}   
 
25th    Deposition of the Holy Veil and belt at the Blachernae Palace, Constantinope (Holy Veil)      
 
25th     Palm Sunday until Easter Sunday, May 2nd, the Holy Passion Reliquary will be available for veneration  during all of Holy Week: 
 
Passion reliquary

   THE HOLY PASSION WEEK RELIQUARY

During this years’ Holy Passion week, the Parish of Saint John of Shanghai will have the great spiritual blessing of being able to offer this important reliquary, for veneration by the faithful. The bronze nineteenth century reliquary contains the following sacred relics: 

The Holy Seamless Robe of Our Lord, which he wore on Palm Sunday and Good Friday

The Holy Column of the Flagellation at which the Lord was scourged

The Holy Reed/Sceptre Our Lord was forced to hold whilst mocked after His Scourging

A small portion of one of the Holy Thorns from the Crown of Thorns

The Holy Life Giving Wood of The True Cross

The Holy Titulus (from the board carrying the Inscription “Jesus of  Nazareth King of the Jews”}

A fragment of one of the Holy Nails used at the crucifixion of the Lord

A portion from the Holy Sponge, which was offered to the Lord to drink from

A fragment of the Holy Lance of Saint Longinus who pierced the side of the Lord

A portion of the Holy Shroud of Turin in which the body of the Lord was interred.

(These were previously under the guardianship of the late Bishop Franz Xaver Eberle, auxiliary Archbishop of Augsburg and Bishop of Zalliche  IN PARTIBUS IN FEDELIUM, born 1871, died 1954.)

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Our March 2021 list of relics available for veneration according to their feastdays in addition to those on long term loan mentioned above, are all available for the duration of the month of March which  means that St Patrick’s relic can also be venerated also on his Western (Gregorian Calendar) feastday, the 17th of March. 

8th.   St Polycarp, Church Father, ex ossibus
 
9th    Finding of the Head of John the Baptist (ex osibus – on long term loan)
 
19th  Finding of the Holy Cross by the Empress Saint Helena, a fragment of the True Cross (on long term loan) and an ex ossibus relic of the Empress (her reliquary also contains a single thorn from The Crown of Thorns.)
 
30th  Saint Patrick, Enlightener of Ireland and Equal of the Apostles, ex ossibus, (There will be an Akathist service to St Patrick at 5pm on this Day – all welcome)

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Our February 2021 list of relics available for veneration according to the feastdays as they occur in February when translated to the modern day calendar dates:

February 3rd.   Feast of St Maximus the Confessor (ex ossibus), Opponent of the heresy of Monothelism
 
February 6th    Feast of St Xenia of Rome (ex ossibus)
 
February 9th    Feast of the translation of St John Chrysostom, Author of the Divine Liturgy (ex ossibus)
 
February 12th   Feast of the Three Holy Hierarchs Saints Basil the Great (ex ossibus),St. Gregory the                   Theologian, St John Chrysostom (ex ossibus)
 
February 22th  Appollonia of Alexandria, martyr and patroness of dentistry (ex ossibus)

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Our January 2021 relics are available for veneration from 1 January during, after and immediately before our Sunday Readers’ Services, Vespers on Friday 9th and Divine Liturgy on Sunday 10th of January and also by appointment:

JANUARY FEASTS WHICH WILL BE ACCOMPANIED BY FIRST CLASS RELICS (ex ossibus, from the bones).

2nd.   St Ignatius the God Bearer, Bishop of Antioch, ex ossibus.
7th.    The Most Holy Feast of the Nativity of Our Lord and God and Saviour Jesus Christ (The Holy manager, the three Magi Sts Balthasar, Caspar and Melchior, ex ossibus.
9th.    St Stephen the Protomartyr, ex ossibus.
10th.  St Joseph the Betrothed, foster father of Our Lord and Protector of the All Holy Theotokos, and St James Brother of the Lord, ex ossibus.
14th   St Basil the Great, Doctor of the Church and author of the Divine Liturgy that bears his name, ex ossibus.
17th   Synaxis of the 70 Apostles. Sts Andrew the First Called, James, brother of the Lord, Jude, Luke, Matthew,Mark, Simon kinsman of the Lord,, Stephen the protomartyr,  Thomas the Confessor, ex ossibus
19th.   Baptism of Our Lord and God and Saviour Jesus Christ by Saint John the Baptist, forerunner, and  Foremost of the Prophets, ex ossibus
23rd.  St Gregory of Nyssa, brother of St Basil the Great.revealer of Divine Mysteries, ex ossibus
30th    St Anthony the Great, Father of All Monks, ex ossibus.
31st    St Athanasius the Great, Defender of the Most Holy Trinity and Pillar of Orthodoxy, ex ossibus.
 
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Here is our December Schedule of Relics
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4th.  Entry of the Most Holy Theokos into the Temple (1st class relics of her parents, St Joachim and Anne will be available for veneration)
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7th.  St Catherine/Ekaterina of Alexandria ( this relic is presently on loan to another church, but it will be available for veneration from December 18th}
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9th.  Dedication of the Church of St George in Kiev (1st class relic of St George, and St Demetrius will be available for veneration)
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13th. Saint Andrew the First Called, Patron Saint of Russia, Greece, Georgia and Scotland (a1st class relic will be available for veneration)
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17th. St Barbara the Great Martyr (1st class relic will be available for veneration from December 18th) St John of Damascus, Defender of Icons and New Theologian (relic will be available on the feast day in the evening).
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19th. St Nicholas of Myra (1st class relic will be available for veneration)
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20th. St Ambrose of Milan (1st class relic, with his friend  St John Chrysostom will be available for veneration)
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22nd. Conception by St Anne of the All Holy Theotokos (1st class relics of both parents of the Theotokos will be available for veneration)
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25th. 1st class relics of the Holy Manger and of the Three Magi, St Balthasar of Arabia, St Melchior of Persia and St Gaspar of India will be available for veneration at least until Orthodox Christmas in the JULIAN calendar in January.
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26th. St Lucy of Syracuse (1st class relic will be available, with St Xenia of Rome, for veneration)
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NOVEMBER dates of feastdays for which relics will be available for veneration during the whole month of November:
 
5th   St James , Brother of the Lord
8th  St Demetrius of Thesalonika
14th Holy Unmercenary Brothers Saints Cosmas and Damian
16th Dedication of the Church of the Great Martyr St George in Lyddia
23rd The Commemoration of the torture of the Great Martyr George
26th Saint John Chrysostom, Archbishop of Constantinople and author of the Divine Liturgy
29th Saint Matthew the Apostle and Evangelist

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During the month of October we will have relics related to the below feastdays for veneration:

4th.  Apodosis of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross
 
6th  Conception of St John the Forerunner and Baptist, and the Commemoration of the vision and speechlessness of his father Zachariah.
 
18th St Mark the Apostle and Evangelist
 
19th Protection of the All Holy Theotokos
 
20th St Thomas the Apostle
 
22nd St James son of Alphaeus
 
30th Translation of the relics of St Lazarus of Bethany
 
31st St Luke the Apostle, of the Seventy, and Evangelist
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The September schedule is as follows:

5th.   Saint Irenaeus of Lyon
14th. Beheading of St John the Baptist
18th. Saints Zacharias and Anne, Parents of the All Holy Theotokos
21st. Nativity of the All Holy Theotokos
27th. Exaltation of the Holy and Life Giving Cross
27th. Saint John Chrysostom, Archbishop of Constatinople and Author of the Divine Liturgy
30th. Saint Sophia of Rome

The following relics will be made available throughout August from the third of August, especially to coincide with the August feast days:

August 4th: Equal of the Apostles Saint Mary Magdalene
August 7th: Dormition of St Anne Mother of the All Holy Theotokos (together with St Joachim}
August 14th: Procession of the Holy and Life Giving Cross
August 15th: Translation of the Relics of the Holy Protomartyr Saint Stephen the Deacon
August 26th. Saint Maximus the Confessor
August 28th: The Dormition of the All Holy Theotokos(a lock of Her hair,PS: and the Holy Veil)

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Throughout July we will have the below listed relics (some of them are mounted together with one or two other relics) especially also to coincide with their feastdays, for which we will be happy to facilitate veneration of the relics even if there is no specific service scheduled for a particular day:

2 July: St Jude, the brother of the Lord

7 July: St John the Forerunner and Baptist of the Lord

12 July: St Peter and St Paul

13 July: (Synaxis of the Twelve Apostles): St Andrew, St James the Just, St Luke, St Mark, St Matthew, St Simon, St Thomas

14 July: Sts Cosmas ans Damian the Unmercenaries

15 July: Robe of the Mother of God – Feastday of the placing of the Tunic of the Mother of God in Blanchernae

19 July: St Lucy

23 July: Holy Tunic of the Lord

31 July: St Marina of Antioch (encased together with St Catherine of Alexandria and St Barbara the Great Martyr)

We have now received the relics for June feast days, which can be venerated throughout the month of June:

St Helena, Empress (feastday 3rd of June)
St Xenia of St Petersburg (feastday 6th of June)
St John the Forerunner and Baptist (feastday of the third finding of his
head on 7 June) – we are presently in the very humbling
position of having a relic of his father and mother – St Elisabeth and
St Zacharia – as well.
St Justin the Philosopher (festday 14th June)
Sts Peter and Paul (start of the fast for their feastday on 15th of June)

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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 relics are available for this:

A

Ambrose of Milan, Dr. of the Church
Andrew, The First Called (2 relics)
Anne, Mother of the All Holy Theotokos
Anthony the Great (of the Desert)
Apollonia of Alexandria, Virgin & Martyr
Athanasius the Great, Doctor of the Church

B

Baltazar the Magi
Barbara Great Martyr
Bazil the Great

C

Caspar the Magi
Cosmas the Unmercenary
Catherine of Alexandria Great Martyr (Ekatatina)
Christopher of Lycea (Great Martyr)

D

Damian the Unmercenary
Demetrius of Thessalonika

E

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

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

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

P

Patrick, Enlightener of Ireland
Polycarp of Smyrna, Doctor of the Church

S

Simon, the Apostle, Kinsman (‘brother’) of the Lord
Sophia of Rome (mother of Faith, Hope and Love)
Stephen the Protomartyr

T

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

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;

In addition to the relic of St John of Shanghai and to the previously mentioned relics we will have the hair of the Blessed Virgin Mary for veneration during and immediately before and after the priestly services this weekend of 6/7 March, Alleluia.

For the next priestly visit 6/7 March

For the next visit of Fr Paul Elliott for Vespers on Friday 6th March evening at 19:30, and on Saturday 7th March during the Divine Liturgy and other Services in the morning we will have the following first class relics for veneration:

  • St Mary of Egypt,
  • St John the Baptist
  • St Anna the Mother of the Theotokos
  • St Peter and St Paul
  • St Stephen the Protomartyr

as well as a relic of the tunic of our Lord Jesus

All welcome to venerate these relics.

Sts Xenia

St XeniaFor the feast days of both St Xenia of Petersburg (icon on the left) and St Xenia the Righteous of Rome on Thursday,  6th of February,  we will have available for veneration a second class relic of the former saint and a first class relic of the latter. Everyone welcome. This is in addition to the following relics presently available for veneration:

– The tunic of Our Lord 
– St John the Forerunner and Baptist
– Sts Martha, Lazarus and Mary
– St Anna the mother of the Theotokos

 

Available for veneration until 3 February:

Presently the following relics are available for veneration just before, during or immediately after any of the services or by private arrangement:

– The tunic of Our Lord
– St John the Forerunner and Baptist
– Sts Martha, Lazarus and Mary
– St Anna the mother of the Theotokos

Everybody most welcome.

Relics loaned to us for veneration at the Divine Nativity Liturgy on Sunday 12th January:

– the Holy Crib of the Infant Lord
– the Magi: Balthazar, Melchior and Caspar
– the Protecting Veil of the Blessed Virgin Mary
– the Belt of St Joseph
– St Stephen
– St John the Forerunner and Baptist
– Sts Martha, Lazarus and Mary
– St Anna the mother of the Theotokos
– St Lucy of Syracuse
– St John of Shanghai

Everyone very welcome.

Upcoming dates for you diaries

For our celebration of the Feast of the Nativity on 11th and 12th January we are scheduled to make available for public veneration the relics of the Three Wise Men as well as a relic of the manger in which Our Lord Jesus had been placed.

St Stephen

From 30 December at least until his feastday on 9 January you are welcome to venerate the relic of St Stephen the first Martyr and Protodeacon at any of the scheduled services.

From now until the 8th of February the relics of Sts Martha, Lazarus and Mary are available for veneration at every scheduled service or by private arrangement.

Saturday 21st to Sunday 22nd of December 2019:

For the All Night Vigil and for the Saturday JoachimannaEvening Service at 19:30 hours as well as for the Sunday morning Readers Service, on account of the feast of the CONCEPTION OF THE THEOTOKOS BY ST ANNA, a relic of St Anna will be made available for veneration. Everyone welcome.

St AndrewFriday 13th of December 2019:

The feastday of THE HOLY APOSTLE ANDREW THE FIRST-CALLED. We will have a relic of St Andrew the First Called available for veneration for the evening service at 19:30 hours. Everybody welcome.