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is the difference between martyr, hieromartyr, ascetic-martyr etc. and how
should they be commemorated.
Answer to Question 2.
Taking each rank separately, when we say Forefathers we mean mainly Christ's ancestors from Adam until his incarnation in the flesh, but also all the holy men and women of the Old Testament who lived before Christ, the Righteous people like Enoch, Noah, Esdras and others.
Prophets we mean those saintly men and women who during the period before
Christ until St. John the Baptist, preached to the Jewish nation the word
of God and foretold the coming of the Messiah, as did Moses, David, Elias,
Isaiah and others. By
Apostles we mean the disciples of Christ, the 12 as Andrew and Peter and
the 70 as Cleopas and Ananias But also the first disciples of the
Apostles who also preached the Gospel as Titus and Timothy, Silas and
others. In this category belong also the Evangelists and those we call
Equal to the Apostles, in other words they were not of the Apostles, but
because they offered great services to Christianity, out of gratitude and
in recognition of their service, the Church bestowed upon the the title
Equal to the Apostles. Among these are the first Christian Emperor
Constantine, his mother Helen, Photina the Samaritan woman, Olga of
Russia, Nina of Georgia, Cyril and Methodius Apostles to the Slavs.
The rank of the Confessors also belongs to the category of the Martyrs. They were Christians who during the times of persecution were dragged to the courts of the idol worshippers and confessed their faith in Christ. They were tortured to make them deny him, but for one reason or another, they were not sentenced to death like the martyrs. Among the Confessor Saints we have Sts. Chariton and Maximos.
By Ascetics we mean the monks and nuns who lived exemplary monastic lives. They did not offer their blood, but sacrificed their lives living a daily martyrdom of the strictest disciplines and obediences thus gaining the kingdom. In this rank belong Sts. Anthony, Euthymius, Savva, Athansius of Athos, Euphrosyne and a multitude of other men and women.
By Hierarchs and Teachers we mean those great Bishops who with holiness tended like good shepherds the people of God. They taught verbally or by writings the word of truth like the great Three Hierarchs Basil the Great, John Chrysostom and Gregory the Theologian.
The title "Fathers" is given literally to all those clerics who distinguished for the holiness of their lives and correct teaching, who made an impression in the wisdom of their writings, but in general all the holy clerics and monks.
And lastly the Selfless Physician. These were men of medicine who offered their services free of charge both to the rich and the poor. In Greek they are called the Anagyri meaning without silver. God blessed their healing with miraculous powers which often caused the envy of other doctors. Some died peacefully while others were murdered out of envy or received a martyr's death.
All these saints the Church calls upon during various services as intercessors that through their prayers our petitions will be more acceptable before God. There is no service, prayer of sacrament that does not mention some of the saints. All services end with a dismissal which makes mention of a great number of the saints and to which can be added local saints and those who are commemorated on the day. For the usual dismissals, the Priest should have no problem with the correct order as these are found printed in the Priest's Liturgical Handbook. Many Priest, especially those new to the priesthood, have difficulty adding the name of the saint for the day correctly. This is not as difficult as it might seem as long as we pay attention to the rank of the saint and his/her epithet. Instructions can be found at the end of the Great Vespers service under the Hieratikon listings, which are also listed below.
Instructions on how to give the Dismissals
EVANGELIST - of the holy and all-glorious
Apostle and Evangelist…
EQUAL TO THE APOSTLES - of the holy and all-glorious and equal to the Apostles...
SELFLESS PHYSICIANS - of the holy
wonderworker and selfless physician...
to commemorate the Great martyr George we say: Of the holy and glorious
Greatmartyr George the Victory bearer. To commemorate St. Savva the
Sanctified we say: Of our holy God-bearing father Savva the Sanctified
St. Nicholas will be commemorated as: Of our father among the saints
Nicholas of Myra, for St. Basil we will say; Of our father among the
saints Basil the Great, Archbishop of Caesarea in Cappadocia.