Monday, January 02, 2017

Basil: don't neglect the community

Monday, January 2, 2017
    Feast of Basil the Great & Gregory Nazianzen, Bishops, Teachers, 379 & 389
    Commemoration of Seraphim, Monk of Sarov, Mystic, Staretz, 1833
    In those days when the number of disciples was increasing, the Grecian Jews among them complained against the Hebraic Jews because their widows were being overlooked in the daily distribution of food. So the Twelve gathered all the disciples together and said, “It would not be right for us to neglect the ministry of the word of God in order to wait on tables. Brothers, choose seven men from among you who are known to be full of the Spirit and wisdom. We will turn this responsibility over to them and will give our attention to prayer and the ministry of the word.”
    This proposal pleased the whole group. They chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Spirit; also Philip, Procorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolas from Antioch, a convert to Judaism. They presented these men to the apostles, who prayed and laid their hands on them.
    —Acts 6:1-6 (NIV)
    Do not, as is usually the case, thrust the care of the common weal upon your neighbor; then, as each one in his own thoughts makes light of the matter, all find to their surprise that they have drawn upon themselves through their neglect a personal misfortune.
    ... St. Basil the Great (330?-379), Saint Basil, the Letters, tr. Roy Joseph Deferrari, Martin Rawson, Patrick McGuire, London: William Heinemann, 1950, p. 169 (see the book)
    See also Acts 6:1-6; 2 Cor. 8:1-4; Gal. 2:10; Heb. 13:16; 1 John 3:17
Quiet time reflection:
    Lord, ensure that we remember the poor.
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