Lives of Saints - St. Leo of Rome Christianity - Books
Don't be anxious for your life, what you will eat, nor yet for your body, what you will wear.                Life is more than food, and the body is more than clothing.                Consider the ravens: they don't sow, they don't reap, they have no warehouse or barn, and God feeds them. How much more valuable are you than birds!                Which of you by being anxious can add a cubit to his height?                If then you aren't able to do even the least things, why are you anxious about the rest?                Consider the lilies, how they grow. They don't toil, neither do they spin; yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.                But if this is how God clothes the grass in the field, which today exists, and tomorrow is cast into the oven, how much more will he clothe you, O you of little faith?                Don't seek what you will eat or what you will drink; neither be anxious.                For the nations of the world seek after all of these things, but your Father knows that you need these things.                But seek God's Kingdom, and all these things will be added to you.               
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St. Leo of Rome

St. Leo the First was Pope of Rome during the fifth century. Born in Italy of devout parents, he was first archdeacon under Pope Sixtus the Third, and elected to the papal throne against his will after Sixtus’s death. When Attila the Hun drew near to Rome, preparing to ravage and burn the city, St. Leo went out to him in his episcopal vestments, tamed the wrath of the Hun leader and averted the fall of Rome. Attila was willing to be guided by St. Leo because he saw his holiness, and because he had a vision of the Apostles Peter and Paul standing behind St. Leo, threatening him with a flaming sword.

St. Leo not only saved Rome, but contributed greatly to the safeguarding of Orthodoxy against the heresy of Eutyches and Dioscorus. This heresy consisted in the merging of the divine and human natures of Christ into one, and, following from this, the denial of the existence of two wills in the Person of our Lord and Savior. This led to the summoning of the Fourth Ecumenical Council at Chalcedon, at which St. Leo’s Epistle was read. St. Leo, after writing this epistle, had placed it on the tomb of St. Peter, whereupon it had been corrected by St. Peter. As death drew near, he spent forty days in fasting and prayer by the tomb of the Apostle Peter, begging him to tell him if his sins were forgiven. The apostle appeared to him and assured him that they were, except of his sins in ordaining priests (from which it is seen how grave a sin it is to ordain an unworthy man). The saint returned to prayer until he was told that these also were wiped out. Then he gave his soul to the Lord in peace. St. Leo entered into rest in the year 461.

Troparion, Tone 3:
Thou wast the Church's instrument/ in strengthening the Church's teaching of true doctrine;/ thou didst shine forth from the West like a sun/ and didst dispel the heretics' error./ O righteous Leo, entreat Christ our God to grant us His great mercy.

Kontakion, Tone 3:
From the throne of thy priesthood, O glorious one,/ thou didst stop the mouths of the spiritual lions;/ thou didst illumine thy flock with the light of the knowledge of God/ and with the inspired doctrines of the Holy Trinity./ Thou art glorified as a divine initiate of the grace of God.


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