The seventeenth Sunday after Pentecost is the last of consecutive Sunday Gospel readings after Pentecost from St. Matthew. The prescribed Gospel reading for this Sunday is from St. Matthew, chapter 15, verses 21 through 28, where-in we read and hear of an encounter between our Lord and a woman of Canaan. Within this brief Gospel passage, the faith of a Gentile and Jesus’ ultimate gracious response is revealed to us.
On September 27th, the Church celebrates the feast of the Elevation of the Holy Cross. Two events connected to the Honorable Cross of our Lord are commemorated this day: first, the finding of the Cross by the Empress Helena in the Holy Land; and second, the return of the Cross from Persia to Jerusalem in the year 628.
"O Lord, save Your people, and bless You inheritance. Grant victories to the Orthodox Christians over their adversaries. And by virtue of Your Cross, preserve Your habitation."