On this day, we commemorate the departure of the righteous Prophet Nahum, one the 12 Minor Prophets. He was born in the village of Elkosh (Nahum 1:1) in Galilee. He was from the Tribe of Simeon and he was the 16th Prophet after Moses. He prophesied in the days of Amos, the son of Yodae who was also called Joash, in the days of Uzziah his son.

He rebuked the children of Israel because of their worship of idols. He explained to them that although God is compassionate and abundant in mercy, He is also a zealous God and He will take vengeance on His adversaries, and He reserves wrath for His enemies (Nahum 1:2). He prophesied concerning the preaching of the Gospel and of the Apostles who would preach it by saying, "Look, there on the mountains, the feet of one who brings good news, who proclaims peace! ..." (Nahum 1:15).

He also prophesied about the destruction that would come upon the City of Ninevah. That prophecy was fulfilled when God sent an earthquake and a fire, which destroyed and burnt up the people whom went back on the way of righteousness and committed sin. As for those who were righteous, no evil nor harm befell them.

When Prophet Nahum completed his days, which were pleasing to God, he departed in peace.

On this day, also we commemorate the martyrdom of St. Victor (Boctor). He was born in a town near Assiut, east of the river Nile. He was appointed a soldier in the town of Shaw. An edict was issued by Emperor Diocletian for the people to worship and raise incense to idols. As the saint refused to obey that edict, the Governor of Shaw called him and tried to persuade him, but he failed. The Governor then cast him into prison. His parents went to him and encouraged him to face martyrdom.

Once more the Governor released him from prison and ordered him to worship idols, but he refused. Finally, the Governor was enraged and sent him to the Prince of Assiut along with some soldiers and a message informing him of what had happened.

The Prince of Assiut questioned him as to why he had disobeyed the Governor of Shaw. The Prince continued by saying, "If you listen to me I shall promote you and write to the Emperor to appoint you a Governor over one of the cities." The Saint shouted saying, "The kingdoms of the world will vanish, the gold will fade away, the clothes will wear out, the beauty of the body will degenerate and be eaten by worms in the grave. I therefore do not leave my Lord Jesus Christ the Creator of heaven and earth, and the Provider for everyone to worship idols made of stone and inhabited by devils." The prince was enraged and ordered him to be tied to the tails of horses and be dragged to the village of Ebesidia.

They asked him again to worship the idols, but he refused. The prince ordered him to be killed by throwing him in boiling water in the village of Mosha, east of the village of Ebesidia. When they took him there, he asked the soldiers to wait for him while he prayed. He extended his arms and prayed to the Lord. The angel of the Lord appeared to him and complimented him, offering him promises of everlasting blessings in the kingdom of heaven. Then St. Victor looked to the soldiers and asked them to finish what they were ordered to do. They bound him and cast him into boiling water. He endured to the end and finally received the crown of martyrdom.

Christian people came, took his body secretly and hid it until the end of the reign of Diocletian. When they revealed it, the people who saw it testified that they found the body whole with not even one hair burnt. He appeared lying peacefully like a sleeping person.

They built a great church after his name, which still exists in the village of Shaw in the Province of Assiut. Many wonders and signs appeared from his body and still appear until this day.

On this day, also we commemorate the martyrdom of St. Isidore.

The Holy Martyrs Thyrsos, Leukios and Kallinikos suffered for Christ under the emperor Decius (249-251) at Bithynian Caesarea. Saint Leukios, having reproached the governor Qumvricius for his unjust persecution of Christians, after torture was beheaded by the sword. Saint Thyrsos, sentenced to cruel tortures and torments, endured them unharmed and by the will of God he died peacefully. The pagan priest Kallinikos, having seen the bravery and the miracle involving Saint Thyrsos, believed in Christ and boldly confessed the true faith, for which he was beheaded by the sword.
The Holy Martyrs Philemon, Apollonios, Arian and Theotykhos suffered for the faith in Egypt, at the city of Antinoe, under the emperor Diocletian (284-305). Saint Arian up until his conversion to Christ was a persecutor of Christians, among which number were the martyrs Apollonios and Philemon. The Martyr Apollonios, at first fearing to face the sufferings, asked the pagan-musician Philemon to change into his clothing and make the appearance of offering sacrifice to idols for him. But unexpectedly Saint Philemon confessed himself a Christian afront the pagans. Saint Apollonios repented himself and also confessed Christ. After torture both martyrs were executed. Their torturer Arian -- his injured eye having been healed by ashes taken from the remains of Philemon -- repented and was converted to the Christian faith and baptised together with all his household and body-guards. Out of love for Christ they voluntarily went to torture and were sentenced to death. Among the body-guards the eldest was the Martyr Theotykhos, remembered together with the other saints. The Martyrs Philemon and Apollonios died on 16 March 286, and the Martyrs Arian and Theotykhos -- on 4 March 287.
Sainted Ilarion, Metropolitan of Suzdal' and Yur'ev (in the world John), was born 13 November 1631 into the family of the lower-city priest Ananii. His father, famed for his piety and reading, was one of three candidates for the Patriarchal throne, put forth together in choice with the future Patriarch Nikon (1652-1658).

John took vows at a monastery in 1653. In 1655 he became founder and builder of the Phlorischev wilderness monastery not far from the city of Gorokhovetsa. In the doings of a monk, the saint underwent an harsh struggle with fleshly passions. When he fell down in exhaustion before the Vladimir Icon of the Mother of God and with tears besought Her for help, the Mother of God shielded him with gracious power and pacified his spirit. One time, when Saint Ilarion was serving evening song together with a monk-deacon, robbers burst into the church. They killed the monk-deacon and started to set Saint Ilarion on fire, interrogating him as to where the monastery treasure was hid. They did not believe that in the monastery there was no gold. Overcome by the pain, Saint Ilarion turned to the wonderworking icon and said: "O All-Pure Virgin Mary, Mother of our Lord Jesus Christ! If they injure me with the fire, I shall no more have the ability to always glorify Thy Son and Thee." Suddenly the robbers heard the shouts of people searching for them, and in fear they fled.

One time, Saint Ilarion in passing by the church heard a voice: "I shalt glorify thee through all the land". He trembled, and having gone into the vestibule, he found there no people; in the portico was only the Vladimir Icon of the Mother of God. The ascetic with tears fell down before the image and confessed his unworthiness.

Later on, when the saint had set about construction of a stone church, he greatly sorrowed, that concerns about the construction and disagreements among the workers were distracting him from prayer. While making services in church with the brethren, he was preoccupied by these thoughts and began to regret beginning the work. With tears he besought the Mother of God not to abandon him and to deliver him from these worries. At the finish of the prayer Saint Ilarion remained alone in church and began again to think about the construction. And so he fell asleep. In a dream the Mother of God appeared to him and said: "Transfer My image, named the Vladimir, from this hot church and put it in the newly-made stone church, and I shalt be thine Helper there". Saint Ilarion awoke and gave the command to ring the large bell. The monks immediately assembled. All set off to the hot church and, having prayed before the icon, solemnly transferred it from the portico into the temple. After making the all-night vigil, Divine Liturgy and a molieben, the saint told the brethren about his vision. Then in procession they transferred the icon to the church under construction, where they set it amidst the woods. From that time the construction went successfully and soon was finished. The saint wanted to dedicate the temple in honour of the icon. But he had a vision in which he was made to understand, that the temple was to be consecrated in honor of the Dormition [Uspenie] of the MostHoly Mother of God.

In the wilderness monastery he maintained a very strict community rule. In the year 1694 the saint sent a directive to the Phlorischev monastery talking of monastic rule, in which he reminisced about his own monastery rule at this monastery: "Under me, a sinner, no one possessed anything of his own, but all was put in common. And at present many of you remember about that former community in common. And they remember also that I consigned to the fire those belongings which, under me a sinner, would destroy that common-community."

On 11 December 1681 the saint was consecrated to the dignity of Archbishop of Suzdal' and Yur'ev, and in 1682 he was elevated to the dignity of Metropolitan and remained on the Suzdal' cathedra until February 1705. The saint died peacefully on 14 December 1707 and was buried in the Suzdal' cathedral in honour of the Nativity of the MostHoly Mother of God. The saint was known for his unceasing concern for the poor. After his death they found all of three farthings of money.

The wonderworking Icon of the Mother of God of Vladimir-Phlorischev (commemorated 26 August) was written by the reknown iconographer Ivan Andreevich Chirov in 1464 at Nizhni Novgorod under a vow of Ivan Yakovlevich Vetoshnikov.