Feast Of St Basil


Greece in January gets off to a sacred start with January 1st, the Feast of St. Basil the Great, an early founder of the Greek Orthodox Church.

St. Basil was an authority on the monastic life. He formulated the rules and regulations for the monks of his day, and these rules still prevail in most of the Christian monasteries of the world. St. Basil prepared the Divine Liturgy and although the Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom is used 42 Sundays a year in our Church, it is based on the slightly longer Divine Liturgy of St. Basil. He loved children and always assisted the sick and the homeless. He was the first bishop to establish orphanages and hospitals and old age homes. He first directed the attention of the Church to these unfortunate victims of society.

Why was St. Basil given the name "Great"? St. Basil was called "Great" because he conquered the hearts and souls of men for Jesus Christ. His whole life was dedicated to Jesus and the message of Christianity. He died in the Lord on January 1, 379 AD.

Basil's Life

St. Basil was born in the year 330 AD in the city of Caesarea, Asia Minor. He was one of six children who all became saints in the Church; his brothers and sister became priests, bishops, and nuns; his father was a famous rhetor and mother both known for great piety; his maternal grandfather was a Christian martyr, executed in the years prior to Constantine I's conversion. St. Basil studied in Constantinople and Athens. He was ordained Bishop of Caesarea on June 14, 370 AD.