SS. Peter and Paul Orthodox Church
Orthodox Church in America
25636 North Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA
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Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 

Rev. Daniel Mathewson – Rector           Lord’s Day – August 7th,  2016                     Parish phone: 814-734-3801

Afterfeast of the Transfiguration. Martyr Dometius of Persia and two disciples (363).

Glory to Jesus Christ!         Glory Forever!

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior. Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would if you would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel. 

 

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

The Newly Illumined…Ignatius and Barnabus Rachocki, Those in need.. Fr. Nicholas, Fr. Paul, Fr. George, Mat. Suzanne, James, Karen, Alexandra, Rick, David, Stavros, Timothy, Vernon, Mary, Paul, George, Theodore, Valentina,, Peter, Constantine, Marina, William, Thomas, Melissa, Christina, Alexandra, Evan,, Patricia, Robert, Donna, Harry, Timothy, Thomas, Alan, Kathleen, Rick, Lynne, James, Mary, Randy, Connie, Jeremiah, Joel, James, Renee, David, Paul The Homebound… Vincent, Tanya, Michael, Mary-Louise, Helen, John, Irene, Ruth, Pete, Donna, John, Josephine, Ann, Andy, William, Claudia… Catechumens …June, Inquirers… Matthew, James, Jen, Kim, David, Sue, Isaac,, special requests…Daleen, Penni, James, Angela …Cheryl, Nina, Lois, Lindsey, Sarah, Alyssa, Catherine Military servers…Greg Hargett … Travelers… Steve and Lisa, George …Departed Orthodox…Mary Ann, Timothy

 

 FOCA ANNUAL GOLF OUTING

MEADVILLE ~ AUGUST 18-20

 

MISSIONS TEAM Fundraiser

for House of Hope Friday August 19th 6-9pm

Art Auction, food, Bands- 5$ cover ~VooDoo Brewery ~ Meadville

Please bring a friend!

 

Announcements for 2016:

 

-Today Adult Sunday School – The Book of Job

-MISSIONS TEAM MEETING- Next Sunday, August 14th  

-Sunday School Teachers meeting – Sunday, August 21st

-Altar Server Retreat- Sat. August 27th 2pm – 9pm (with Camp fire)

-Catechumens and Inquires Class- Sunday, Sunday August 29th, Sunday, Sept. 4th, Sunday Sept 11th Edinboro Highland Games – Sept. 10th 9am-4pm (Parish Booth)

-100th Year Anniversary of the Archdiocese – Celebration November 12th, 2016

 7th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 6. Afterfeast of the Transfiguration. Martyr Dometius of Persia and two disciples (363). Finding of the Relics of St. Mitrophanes, first Bishop of Voronezh (1832). Ven. Pimen (Pœmen) the Much-ailing, of the Kiev Caves (Near Caves—1110). Ven. Pimen, Faster, of the Kiev Caves (Far Caves— 13th-14th c.). St. Mercurius, Bishop of Smolensk (Kiev Caves—Near Caves—1239). Martyrs Marinus the soldier and Asterius the Senator, at Cæsarea in Palestine (260). Ven. Hor (Horus) of the Thebaïd (Egypt—ca. 390). Virgin Potamia the Wonderworker. Ven. Dometius of Philotheou on Mt. Athos (16th c.). The “VALAAM” Icon of the Most-holy Theotokos (1897).

Romans 15:1-7 (Epistle)

We then who are strong ought to bear with the scruples of the weak, and not to please ourselves. Let each of us please his neighbor for his good, leading to edification. For even Christ did not please Himself; but as it is written, “The reproaches of those who reproached You fell on Me.” For whatever things were written before were written for our learning, that we through the patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope. Now may the God of patience and comfort grant you to be like-minded toward one another, according to Christ Jesus, that you may with one mind and one mouth glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore receive one another, just as Christ also received us, to the glory of God.

 Matthew 9:27-35 (Gospel)

When Jesus departed from there, two blind men followed Him, crying out and saying, “Son of David, have mercy on us!” And when He had come into the house, the blind men came to Him. And Jesus said to them, “Do you believe that I am able to do this?” They said to Him, “Yes, Lord.” Then He touched their eyes, saying, “According to your faith let it be to you.” And their eyes were opened. And Jesus sternly warned them, saying, “See that no one knows it.” But when they had departed, they spread the news about Him in all that country. As they went out, behold, they brought to Him a man, mute and demon-possessed. And when the demon was cast out, the mute spoke. And the multitudes marveled, saying, “It was never seen like this in Israel!” But the Pharisees said, “He casts out demons by the ruler of the demons.” Then Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every sickness and every disease among the people.


Cherubic Hymn – The Hymn sung at Divine Liturgy just before the Great Entrance, broken off during the Entrance and finished when the priest has placed the chalice and paten on the altar. “Let us who mystically represent the Cherubim, and chant the thrice-holy hymn to the life creating Trinity, lay aside all earthly cares.” (After the Great Entrance) “That we may raise on high the King of all, who comes invisibly upborne by the Angelic Hosts. Alleluia.”

 Antiphon- Verses from the Psalms with anthems after each, sung at the Divine Liturgy on Great Holy Days after each of the first three litanies.

 Beatitudes – The eight blessings given by the Jesus Christ at the beginning of the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5:3-12). The Beatitudes are sung at the Divine Liturgy at the time of the Little Entrance in place of the third Antiphon. The word beatitude means perfect joy or happiness.

 

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 Rev. Daniel Mathewson – Rector           Lord’s Day – July 24th  2016                        Parish phone: 814-734-3801

Royal Passion Bearers Boris and Gleb

Glory to Jesus Christ!         Glory Forever! 

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior. Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would if you would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel. 

 PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

The Newly Illumined…Ignatius and Barnabus Rachocki, Those in need.. Fr. Nicholas, Fr. Paul, Fr. George, Mat. Suzanne, James, Lois, Karen, Alexandra, , Rick, David, Stavros, Timothy, Vernon, Mary, Paul, George, Theodore, Valentina, , Peter, Constantine, Marina, William, Thomas, Melissa, Christina, Alexandra, Evan, Michael, Dana, Patricia, Robert, Donna, Harry, Timothy, Thomas, Alan, Kathleen, Rick, Lynne, James, Mary, Randy, Connie, Jeremiah, Joel, James,  Renee, David, Evelyn  The Homebound… Vincent, Tanya, Michael, Mary-Louise, Helen, John, Irene, Ruth, Pete, Donna, John, Josephine, Ann, Andy, William, Claudia… Catechumens …June, Inquirers… Matthew, James, Jen, Kim, David, Sue, Isaac,, special requests…Daleen, Penni, James, Angela …Cheryl, Nina, Lois, Lindsey, Sarah, Alyssa, Catherine Military servers…Greg Hargett … Travelers… many… as you hear …Departed Orthodox…Mary Ann, Timothy

Blessing of Vehicles today following Liturgy

 PARISH YOUTH LEAVE FOR CAMP TODAY- Please pray for their safety and spiritual life!

 

PARISH CHICKEN BBQ DINNER

SUNDAY JULY 31st 12noon-3:00pm (See Kathy for Raffle Tickets)

 

FOCA ANNUAL GOLF OUTING

MEADVILLE ~ AUGUST 18-20 MISSIONS TEAM Fundraiser

for House of Hope Friday August 19th 6-9pm

Art Auction, food, Bands- 5$ cover ~VooDoo Brewery ~ Meadville

 

Announcements for 2016:

MISSIONS TEAM MEETING- Sunday, August 14th  

-Pilgrimage to Holy Transfiguration Monastery- August 6th 9am- 3pm Elwood City, Pennsylvania

  • Liturgy 9:00am ~ Lunch ~ Service of Healing 2:00pm

-Altar Server Retreat- Sat. August 27th 2pm – 9pm

-Edinboro Highland Games – Sept. 10th 9am-4pm (Parish Booth)

-100th Year Anniversary of the Archdiocese – Celebration November 12th, 2016

-Last Day for our Children's clothing swap is TODAY.

 

5th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 4. Holy Martyrs and Passionbearers Boris and Gleb, in Baptism Roman and David (1015). Martyr Christina of Tyre (ca. 300). Ven. Polycarp, Archimandrite of the Kiev Caves (1182).


Romans 6:18-23 (Epistle)

Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is that they may be saved. For I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge. For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and seeking to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted to the righteousness of God. For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes. For Moses writes about the righteousness which is of the law, “The man who does those things shall live by them.” But the righteousness of faith speaks in this way, “Do not say in your heart, ‘Who will ascend into heaven?’ “ (that is, to bring Christ down from above) or, “ ‘Who will descend into the abyss?’ “ (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead). But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith which we preach): that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

 

Romans 8:28-39 (Epistle, Saints)

And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren.Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified.What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?Who shall bring a charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies.Who is he who condemns? It is Christ who died, and furthermore is also risen, who is even at the right hand of God, who also makes intercession for us.Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?As it is written: “For Your sake we are killed all day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.”Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come,nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

 

Matthew 8:28-9:1 (Gospel)

When He had come to the other side, to the country of the Gergesenes, there met Him two demon-possessed men, coming out of the tombs, exceedingly fierce, so that no one could pass that way.And suddenly they cried out, saying, “What have we to do with You, Jesus, You Son of God? Have You come here to torment us before the time?”Now a good way off from them there was a herd of many swine feeding.So the demons begged Him, saying, “If You cast us out, permit us to go away into the herd of swine.”And He said to them, “Go.” So when they had come out, they went into the herd of swine. And suddenly the whole herd of swine ran violently down the steep place into the sea, and perished in the water.Then those who kept them fled; and they went away into the city and told everything, including what had happened to the demon-possessed men.And behold, the whole city came out to meet Jesus. And when they saw Him, they begged Him to depart from their region.So He got into a boat, crossed over, and came to His own city.

 

John 15:17-16:2 (Gospel, Saints)

These things I command you, that you love one another. If the world hates you, you know that it hated Me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. Remember the word that I said to you, ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you. If they kept My word, they will keep yours also.

But all these things they will do to you for My name’s sake, because they do not know Him who sent Me. If I had not come and spoken to them, they would have no sin, but now they have no excuse for their sin. He who hates Me hates My Father also. If I had not done among them the works which no one else did, they would have no sin; but now they have seen and also hated both Me and My Father. But this happened that the word might be fulfilled which is written in their law, ‘They hated Me without a cause.’ But when the Helper comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify of Me. And you also will bear witness, because you have been with Me from the beginning. These things I have spoken to you, that you should not be made to stumble. They will put you out of the synagogues; yes, the time is coming that whoever kills you will think that he offers God service.

 

Announcements for 2016:

Graduation Sunday - Next Week-Marley Godfrey (Edinboro) Jake Kirzmanich (Penn State), Alexi Alberti (General McLane), Elisabeth and Ashley Gall (N. C.)

Thursday June 9th – Holy Ascension – Divine Liturgy – 9:30am

Baptism of August Rachocki – Saturday, June 25th

100th Year Anniversary of the Archdiocese – Celebration November 12th, 2016

Mom’s Group Brunch Thursday at 10am – Bring something to share…

PARISH COUNCIL MTG.-

 

Orthodox Day at PNC PARK Pirates v. Giants

Tuesday, June 23rd ~ 7:05pm 23$ Deadline to reserve extended

(Call text or email John Shultz 304-748-1223)

 

Saints Peter and Paul Parish Picnic

Wednesday, June 29th 4pm-9pm

Vespers, Music, Games and activities for the Children

(Pig Roast- local neighbors will be invited - Bring a salad or side to pass)

 

2016 Small Parish Forum

 Thursday, July 14th @3pm to Saturday, July16th to 12:00noon.  

Sessions will take place at Canton’s Holy Assumption Church.  A block of rooms will be reserved at local hotels.  A $100.00 per person registration fee will include meals, breaks, a hospitality reception and Forum materials.  Attendees from the Archdiocese of Pittsburgh and the Diocese of the Midwest are eligible for tuition rebates and grants to assist with travel costs. Craft beer tasting on Friday evening.

See Fr. Daniel if interested.

 

Summer Archdiocesan Missions Trip

To Beavertown PA ~ HOLY SPIRIT MISSION

JULY 18-20TH (See Fr. Daniel if you would like to attend)

 

Orthodox Family Day

Archdiocesan Center - Cranberry

Sunday, August 21st 4-8pm

 

FOCA ANNUAL GOLF OUTING
MEADVILLE, PA

AUGUST 18-20 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Rev. Daniel Mathewson – Rector

May 29th, 2016

Parish phone: 814-734-3801

 

Christ is Risen!

Indeed He is Risen!

 

www.orthodoxcrossingville.org

 

 

The Samaritan Woman –

St. Photini

 

 

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior. Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would if you would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

 

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

Fr. Nicholas, Fr. Paul, Fr. George, Mat. Suzanne, Alexandra, Thomas, Rick, Tamara, Angela, Matthew, David, Stavros, Diane, Eugene, Timothy, Vernon, Mary, Valentina, Paul, George, Theodore, Fr. George, Penni, James, Lois, Daleen, Constantine, Marina, William, Melissa, Michael, Christina, Alexandra, Evan … Inquirers and Catechumens August Rachocki, June MaGuire, Jen, Kim, David, Sue, Isaac…the Homebound… Tanya, Michael, Mary-Louise, Helen, John, Irene, Ruth, Pete, Donna, John, Josephine, Ann, Andy, William, Andy, Military servers…Greg Hargett … Travelers…,Newly Departed…Helen, Mary Ann, Timothy

 

 

Services this week: Wednesday, June 1st, Daily Vespers 6pm

                                    Saturday, 4th- Great Vespers – 6pm

                       

 

MANY YEARS TO ANN STICKNER CELEBRATING HER 90TH  !!

 

 

 

 Tone 4           Troparion      (Resurrection)

 

When the women Disciples of the Lord

learned from the Angel the joyous message of the Resurrection,

they cast away the ancestral curse

and elatedly told the Apostles:

“Death is overthrown!

Christ God is risen,//

granting the world great mercy!”

 

Tone 8            Troparion    (Midfeast)

 

In the middle of the feast, O Savior,

fill my thirsting soul with the waters of piety,

as Thou didst cry to all: “If anyone thirst, let him come to

Me and drink!”//

O Christ God, Fountain of our life, glory to Thee!

 

Tone 8            Kontakion  (Pentecostarion)

 

The Samaritan Woman came to the well in faith;

she saw Thee, the Water of wisdom and drank abundantly.//

She inherited the Kingdom on high, and is ever glorified!

 

Tone 4            Kontakion     (Midfeast)

 

Christ God, the Creator and Master of all,

cried to all in the midst of the feast of the Law:

“Come and draw the water of immortality!”

We fall before Thee and faithfully cry://

Grant us Thy mercies, for Thou art the Fountain of our life!

 

 

___________

 

 

 

5th SUNDAY OF PASCHA — Tone 4. Samaritan Woman. Virgin Martyr Theodosia of Tyre (307-308). Repose of Bl. John of Ustiug, Fool-for-Christ (1494). Virgin Martyr Theodosia, Nun, of Constantinople (726-730). Icon of the Most-holy Theotokos, “SURETY OF SINNERS”.

 

Acts 11:19-26, 29-30 (Epistle)

Now those who were scattered after the persecution that arose over Stephen traveled as far as Phoenicia, Cyprus, and Antioch, preaching the word to no one but the Jews only.

But some of them were men from Cyprus and Cyrene, who, when they had come to Antioch, spoke to the Hellenists, preaching the Lord Jesus. And the hand of the Lord was with them, and a great number believed and turned to the Lord. Then news of these things came to the ears of the church in Jerusalem, and they sent out Barnabas to go as far as Antioch. When he came and had seen the grace of God, he was glad, and encouraged them all that with purpose of heart they should continue with the Lord. For he was a good man, full of the Holy Spirit and of faith. And a great many people were added to the Lord. Then Barnabas departed for Tarsus to seek Saul. And when he had found him, he brought him to Antioch. So it was that for a whole year they assembled with the church and taught a great many people. And the disciples were first called Christians in Antioch.Then the disciples, each according to his ability, determined to send relief to the brethren dwelling in Judea. This they also did, and sent it to the elders by the hands of Barnabas and Saul.

 

John 4:5-42 (Gospel)

So He came to a city of Samaria which is called Sychar, near the plot of ground that Jacob gave to his son Joseph. Now Jacob’s well was there. Jesus therefore, being wearied from His journey, sat thus by the well. It was about the sixth hour. A woman of Samaria came to draw water. Jesus said to her, “Give Me a drink.” For His disciples had gone away into the city to buy food. Then the woman of Samaria said to Him, “How is it that You, being a Jew, ask a drink from me, a Samaritan woman?” For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans. Jesus answered and said to her, “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, ‘Give Me a drink,’ you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water.” The woman said to Him, “Sir, You have nothing to draw with, and the well is deep. Where then do You get that living water? Are You greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well, and drank from it himself, as well as his sons and his livestock? Jesus answered and said to her, “Whoever drinks of this water will thirst again, but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life. The woman said to Him, “Sir, give me this water, that I may not thirst, nor come here to draw.” Jesus said to her, “Go, call your husband, and come here.” The woman answered and said, “I have no husband.” Jesus said to her, “You have well said, ‘I have no husband,’ for you have had five husbands, and the one whom you now have is not your husband; in that you spoke truly. The woman said to Him, “Sir, I perceive that You are a prophet. Our fathers worshiped on this mountain, and you Jews say that in Jerusalem is the place where one ought to worship. Jesus said to her, “Woman, believe Me, the hour is coming when you will neither on this mountain, nor in Jerusalem, worship the Father. You worship what you do not know; we know what we worship, for salvation is of the Jews. But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth. The woman said to Him, “I know that Messiah is coming” (who is called Christ). “When He comes, He will tell us all things.” Jesus said to her, “I who speak to you am He.” And at this point His disciples came, and they marveled that He talked with a woman; yet no one said, “What do You seek?” or, “Why are You talking with her?”

The woman then left her waterpot, went her way into the city, and said to the men, Come, see a Man who told me all things that I ever did. Could this be the Christ? Then they went out of the city and came to Him. In the meantime His disciples urged Him, saying, “Rabbi, eat.” But He said to them, “I have food to eat of which you do not know.”

Therefore the disciples said to one another, “Has anyone brought Him anything to eat?”

Jesus said to them, “My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me, and to finish His work.

Do you not say, ‘There are still four months and then comes the harvest’? Behold, I say to you, lift up your eyes and look at the fields, for they are already white for harvest! And he who reaps receives wages, and gathers fruit for eternal life, that both he who sows and he who reaps may rejoice together. For in this the saying is true: ‘One sows and another reaps.’ I sent you to reap that for which you have not labored; others have labored, and you have entered into their labors. And many of the Samaritans of that city believed in Him because of the word of the woman who testified, “He told me all that I ever did.”

So when the Samaritans had come to Him, they urged Him to stay with them; and He stayed there two days. And many more believed because of His own word. Then they said to the woman, “Now we believe, not because of what you said, for we ourselves have heard Him and we know that this is indeed the Christ, the Savior of the world.”

 

The Prayers for today…

We glorify Thy Resurrection on the third day, O Christ God,

by always honoring Thy life-creating Cross;

by it Thou hast renewed the corrupted nature of man,

O almighty One.

By it Thou hast renewed our entrance to heaven,

for Thou art good and the Lover of man.

The righteous will surround me; for Thou wilt deal bountifully with me.

Thou didst loose the Tree’s verdict of disobedience, O Savior,

by being voluntarily nailed to the tree of the Cross.

By descending to hell, O almighty God,

Thou didst break the bonds of death.

Therefore, we adore Thy Resurrection from the dead, singing in joy:

Glory to Thee, O all powerful Lord!

Out of the depths I cry to Thee, O Lord. Lord, hear my voice!

Thou didst smash the gates of hell, O Lord,

and by Thy death Thou didst demolish the kingdom of death.

Thou didst deliver the race of men from corruption,

granting the world life, incorruption, and great mercy.

Let Thine ears be attentive to the voice of my supplications!

Come, O people,

let us sing of the Savior’s Resurrection on the third day!

By it, we have been freed from the unbreakable bonds of hell.

By it, we have received life and incorruption.

Save us by Thy Resurrection!

O life-creating and almighty Savior, glory to Thee!

If Thou, O Lord, shouldest mark iniquities, Lord, who could stand? But there is forgiveness with Thee.

The middle of the days has come,

beginning with the Savior’s Resurrection,

and sealed by the holy Pentecost.

The first and the last glisten with splendor.

We rejoice in the union of both feasts,

as we draw near to the Lord’s Ascension:

the sign of our coming glorification.

For Thy name’s sake have I waited for Thee, O Lord, my soul has waited for Thy word; my soul has hoped on the Lord.

Be glad, O Zion!

Hear the announcement of Christ’s Resurrection!

Let her faithful sons rejoice!

The filth of the daughter of Zion is washed away.

Jerusalem, stained with the blood of God’s murder, is cleansed by the

Spirit. With songs of joy she celebrates the middle of the feast.

From the morning watch until night, from the morning watch, let Israel hope on the Lord!

As it is written,

the abundant outpouring of divine gifts is drawing near.

The chosen day of the Spirit is halfway come.

The true promise of Christ to the Disciples

after His death, burial, and Resurrection,

heralds the coming of the Comforter.

For with the Lord there is mercy and with Him is plenteous redemption, and He will deliver Israel from all his iniquities.

The Fountain of miracles came to the well at noon

to ensnare the daughter of Eve.

Once, Eve had been driven out of Paradise by the serpent’s guile;

now a woman of Samaria came to draw water.

The Savior saw her and said to her:

“Give me water to drink,

and I will fill thee with the waters of eternal life!”

She ran to the town and proclaimed to the crowd:

“Come and see Christ the Lord!

He is the Savior of our souls!”

Praise the Lord, all nations! Praise Him, all peoples!

The Lord of compassion came to the well

and conversed with a woman of Samaria.

She said: “Give me Thy water that I may never thirst again!

I will drink from the fountain of joy and redemption.”

O Life-giving Lord, glory to Thee!

For His mercy is abundant towards us; and the truth of the Lord endureth for ever.

The Word of the Father,

the co-eternal Son without beginning,

came and sat by the well, though He is the Fountain of healing.

A Samaritan woman came to draw water;

when the Savior saw her, He said to her:

“Give me water to drink! 

Go, call thy husband!”

She thought she was speaking not to God, but to a man.

Trying to evade Him, she said: “I have no husband.”

But the Teacher replied: “Thou speakest the truth,

for thou hast had five husbands,

and the one living with thee now is not thy husband.”

She was amazed by His words and ran back to the town.//

She said to the crowd: “Come and see Christ,

Who grants the world great mercy!”

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

Jesus met the Samaritan woman by Jacob’s well.

He wraps the earth in clouds,

yet He asks for water from her.

Oh, the wonder!

He Who rides on the cherubim speaks with an adulterous woman.

He Who suspended the earth on the waters asks for a drink.

He Who causes the lakes and springs to overflow is weary with thirst.

Truly He desires to set the woman free from the Enemy’s snares,

drowning her sins in the waters of life,//

for He alone is the compassionate Lover of man.

Now and ever, and unto ages of ages. Amen.

The Prophet David was a Father of the Lord through thee,

O Virgin.

He foretold in songs the One Who worked wonders in thee:

“At Thy right hand stood the Queen,”

Thy Mother, the mediatrix of life,

since God was freely born of her without a father.

He wanted to renew His fallen image, made corrupt in passion,

so He took the lost sheep upon His shoulder

and brought it to His Father, joining it to the heavenly pow’rs.//

Christ who has great and rich mercy has saved the world, O Theotokos.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit,

now and ever, and unto ages of ages. Amen.

 

Today let heaven and earth rejoice exceedingly,

for Christ is made manifest, incarnate as a man,

that He might deliver Adam and all his race from the curse;

and He is magnified by miracles when He comes to Samaria!

He Who is clothed in the waters of a cloud,

approaches a woman, seeking water.

Therefore, O faithful, let us all worship Him,//

Who of His own will became poor for our sakes in His

compassionate counsel!

Pascha of beauty,

the Pascha of the Lord,

A Pascha worthy of honor has dawned for us.

Oh, Pascha!

Let us embrace each other joyously!

Pascha, ransom from affliction!

For today, as from a bridal chamber,

Christ has shown forth from the tomb,

and filled the women with joy saying:

“Proclaim the glad tidings to the Apostles!”

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.

 

In Thine inexpressible dispensation,

Thou didst appear on earth, O Christ our God.

When the woman of Samaria heard Thy words, O Lover of man,

she left her jar at the well and ran to the town.

She said: “Come and see Him Who knew every secret hidden in my heart!

Could He be the long-awaited Messiah,//

Who will grant us great mercy?”

Now and ever, and unto ages of ages. Amen.

This is the day of resurrection!

Let us be illumined by the feast!

Let us embrace each other!

Let us call brothers even those that hate us,

and forgive all by the resurrection,

and so let us cry:

Christ is risen from the dead, trampling down death by death, and upon those in the tombs bestowing life! 

 

Learning Like a Saint by Fr. Stephen Freeman

 

            The preparation for Baptism in the early Church often lasted as long as three years. Of deep significance is the fact that during that three-year period, many basic doctrines were not explored. The “mystagogical catechesis” (instruction in the sacramental mysteries of the Church) did not begin until after Baptism. What, we may wonder, were they doing for those first three years, and on what basis were individuals making lifetime conversion decisions? If you read a classic set of catechetical instructions such as those of St. Cyril of Jerusalem, you will discover that the point of almost all the instructions prior to Baptism were moral – the point being to repent from sin and to keep the commandments of Christ.

            CS Lewis’ conversion represents a contemporary example of the ancient path. His questions were relatively simple: Is there a God and, if so, is Jesus Christ truly God-become-man? The story of his conversion, in the autobiographical, Surprised By Joy, relates in great detail the inner and outer workings of those questions. But once those questions were answered for Lewis, he turned to the matter at hand: “Now that I am a Christian, what do Christians believe?” He never treated the Christian faith as something to be formed and shaped according to his own private opinion, nor to be weighed and measured for its relative merit. He described what he called “Mere Christianity,” meaning, those things universally believed by Christians across time. His instinct for this was spot on. It is also worth noting that Lewis did not set himself the task of writing and explaining mere Christianity until some years after his conversion.

What is jarring about this is how counter-intuitive it seems to our consumer-information culture. We assume that the right way to go about doing anything is to collect information, study it, weigh it and then make a reasoned decision. There are however, a good number of false assumptions in that model.

            The first false assumption is that human beings are more or less neutral collectors and judges of information. There is no room for the role of character in this process. For example, if I were to tell someone, say an inquirer, that they were not morally competent to have a valid Christian opinion on a certain topic, they would doubtlessly be offended and leave. But this is generally the case for most people: we lack the character required to know the goal. We understand this with regard to children. There are situations that are morally and intellectually beyond their means of understanding or deciding. The early Church took this for granted. It began a process of moral teaching and formation precisely because the candidates for Baptism were not capable of saying yes to God in a proper manner.

            A second false assumption is that making decisions is largely an intellectual activity. Imagine that I set two servings of food in front of you. You are not allowed to taste or smell either one. But you are told that you must choose one or the other, and that the choice you make will be your food for the next month. The fact is, you cannot make a competent decision. You can make a guess, but, really, you’re just being asked to roll the dice and take a chance. Information and decisions are properly the work of the whole person.

            I have been approached (or rather reproached) more than once over the question of the Orthodox Church’s ordination of only males in the priesthood. For outsiders, the question seems clear, and the Church seems bigoted, patriarchal and stubborn. Most often, I explain that I cannot even discuss the question with them if they are not Orthodox, because they lack the experience required to understand what we are doing. We certainly are not doing what they think we are doing, but they have no basis for me to explain that to them. For example, I believe that unless and until you have a long working experience of the Church’s veneration of the Theotokos and the other saints, you cannot begin to understand the nature of the priesthood and the role that male and female play within the Church.

            Most people in our culture have had their minds and their character formed and shaped by the practices of the modern consumer state. The role of human beings is understood to be production and consumption. There is an accompanying extreme value placed on the illusion of free-choice and a good life defined by self-fulfillment (meaning being pleased with myself for the choices I have made). In our world we are taught to ask, “What do I want to be when I grow up?” and mean by it, “What do I want to do when I grow up?” But the more proper question for a Christian is, “What kind of person do I want to be when I grow up?” and, “How is that possible?”

One of the primary benefits of the early catechumenate was humility. If you are told it will take three years of formation before you are Baptized, the message is clear: you are not ready. What is not ready cannot be hurried. In Orthodoxy, the most important mode of learning is doing. Learning to pray is not an intellectual exercise, and thinking that it is reveals that we do not yet understand prayer. Prayer is formed in the heart and the heart is formed in the crucible of action.

            The great wilderness experiences in the Tradition point to this formation. Moses must leave Egypt and find God in the wilderness. The children of Israel are made to wander forty years in the Sinai. Christ Himself symbolically spends forty days fasting in the wilderness (and we can only wonder if that were the first or only time). It is believed that St. Paul, after His conversion, spent years in the desert (Galatians 1:17). The Church bids us to a forty day fast twice a year (Advent and Lent). The realization that I not only do not know something, but am not yet capable of knowing it, is a humility rarely found in the contemporary world. If I don’t know it, then I simply haven’t found the right book yet.

            It is strange that our culture acknowledges that our inner experience shapes our perception of the outer world, but then goes on to assume that we are capable of knowing and deciding everything in our lives. This notion, interestingly, is believed by a large number of contemporary Christians. The idea of “soul competency” holds that every soul is capable of reading the Scriptures and understanding them through the Holy Spirit. It is a bedrock notion behind many schemes of Sola Scriptura. The resulting chaos of Christian thought is ample evidence that this is patently untrue.

            I am not here advocating a return to the three-year catechumenate of antiquity – our culture cannot bear such humility. But learning how to learn should be a fundamental aspect of the spiritual life. I noticed recently a complaint that the Holy and Great Council, set to meet at Pentecost this year, needed the “voice of women” in order to do its work. It is the cry of modernity. It assumes a sort of “native competency,” much like the modern ideas within our democracies. What Councils actually need are the “voices of the holy,” regardless of anything else. The tower of Babel is the worldly version of Pentecost. However, at Pentecost, those who spoke did so by the Holy Spirit, not by virtue of their biology.

            Being formed into the image of Christ is not primarily the product of choice or decision. It is the work of the Holy Spirit as we keep the commandments. Being formed in the image of Christ is not the same thing as forming an opinion. Orthodoxy is not just something you think, it is mostly something you do. You pray. You pray in this way. If you do not pray these prayers, then it is because you have learned to pray prayers like them. We learn to use our bodies. We subject them to disciplines of fasting, vigils and self-control. We give alms. We learn not to be consumers but givers of thanks. “In patient endurance you acquire your souls” (Luke 21:19)

And it takes a while.

Announcements for March 13th, 2016:

 

+ Forgiveness Vespers will follow Liturgy today

 

+Parish Cleaning Week will be March 14-19This year we are expanding to a “Week of Cleaning” so more people can contribute. One Idea is to come a few hours before the Great Canon of St. Andrew and work then pray. But you maycome on any day or time and contribute to the needs of the parish- see list in hall for more details.  As a member of the parish you should be contributing to the life and health of the parish and its grounds. Through your regular attendance of sevices, your financial support, and by your time and work to maintain our common worship space you fullfill “your reasonable service” as St. Paul says (Rom. 12:2).  

 

+A NOTICE TO ALL MEMBERS: This parish financially functions solely on your pledges and gifts, please maintain your weekly/monthly pledge. As you may or may not know, of the pledges given to the parish, 10% are given to the Archdiocese of Western Pennsylvania to support our local Hierarch and the National Administration. So, for example, if you give 100$ to the parish, only 80$ stays here at Sts. Peter and Paul for our local use. Keep this in mind as you give. Also, remember that as we pray and fast we must also give alms for those who are in need, and this must come from the heart. Both Supporting your parish and Alms are a sacrifice and as the famous Mother Teresa once said: ”If you give what you do not need, it isn’t giving.” Our Ladies Altar Society and Parish Council also have fundraisers from time to time and they donate 10% of their proceeds to a charity as well. Fr. Daniel maintains the Alms Box and distributes these alms to the needy.

 

+ Our Archbishop Melchisidek will make his annual visit on Sunday March 20th, which is the First Sunday of Great and Holy Lent let’s make it our goal to “Pack the House” to show our love for our Bishop!! Please bring your family icon or patron saint to carry in the procession. We greet the Bishop with the words: “Master Bless!” with our hands together palms up, right over left…He blesses and we kiss the hand of the bishop. The hand of the bishop is the hand of Christ.

 

 Services this Week:  

Forgiveness Sun. vespers following- No Sunday School

Great Canon of St. Andrew – March 14th -17th 6pm

1st Pre-Sanctified Liturgy- Friday March18th

Vigil for Orthodoxy Sunday- Sat. March 19th 5pm

Orthodoxy Sunday (with His Eminence Melchesidek) Mar. 20th – Hours begin at 9am -- Divine Liturgy following. A Luncheon in honor of our Archbishop will follow.

 

SUNDAY SCHOOL youth and children's RETREAT

Saturday, March 26th, 2pm-6pm.

 

ADULT PARISH LENTEN RETREAT

Saturday, April 3rd – Memorial Liturgy 9:30am - Brunch11am –Retreat 11:30am-1:30pm

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 

Rev. Daniel Mathewson - Rector

February 21st, 2016

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801

25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 Christ is in Our Midst!

He is and Always shall Be!

 Sunday of the Publican and the Pharisee

 

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior. Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would if you would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel. 

 

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

Adaline, Matthew, David, Stavros, Diane, Eugene Danko, Fr. Nicholas, Timothy Alberti, Vernon and Mary Baldwin, Valentina Emelianow, Paul, George, Theodore, Fr. George, Penni, James, Daleen Matya, Mary Gall, Tamara, Boris, Constantine, Marina, William, Melissa … Inquirers and Catechumens David Angelini, Becky Pineo, (Eli, Sawyer)…. the homebound… Tanya Ferra, Michael Gresh, Mary-Louise Gall, Helen Miller, Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko, military servers…Greg Hargett … Newly born August Ignatius, Departed…(Newly)Mary Ann Onest, Timothy Gidus, Evelyn Van Zanten, Karen Sanford

Services this Week:  (House Blessings continue)

Great Vespers Sat. Feb. 27th  6pm

Divine Liturgy Sun. Feb. 28th - 9:30am (Hours 9:15) Sunday of the Publican and Pharisee (This marks the 1st official week of our preparation for Great and Holy Lent)

 Memorial Saturday Liturgy- Mar. 5th – 9:30am

 TODAYS HYNMS AND SCRIPTURE

Tone 5            Troparion     (Resurrection)

 

Let us, the faithful, praise and worship the Word,

co-eternal with the Father and the Spirit,

born for our salvation from the Virgin;

for He willed to be lifted up on the Cross in the flesh,

to endure death,

and to raise the dead//

by His glorious Resurrection.

 

Tone 4 Kontakion   (from the Lenten Triodion)

 

Let us flee from the pride of the Pharisee!

Let us learn humility from the Publican's tears!

Let us cry to our Savior:

“Have mercy on us,//

O only merciful One!”

 

SUNDAY OF THE PUBLICAN AND THE PHARISEE — Tone 5. Beginning of the Lenten Triodion. Ven. Timothy of Symbola in Bithynia (9th c.). St. Eustathius (Eustace), Archbishop of Antioch (377). St. George, Bishop of Amastris on the Black Sea (802-811). The “KOZEL’SHCHANSKAYA” Icon of the Most-holy Theotokos (1881).

2 Timothy 3:10-15 (Epistle)

But you have carefully followed my doctrine, manner of life, purpose, faith, longsuffering, love, perseverance, persecutions, afflictions, which happened to me at Antioch, at Iconium, at Lystra – what persecutions I endured. And out of them all the Lord delivered me. Yes, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution. But evil men and impostors will grow worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived. But you must continue in the things which you have learned and been assured of, knowing from whom you have learned them, and that from childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.

 

Luke 18:10-14 (Gospel)

Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, ‘God, I thank You that I am not like other men – extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this tax collector.

’I fast twice a week; I give tithes of all that I possess.’ And the tax collector, standing afar off, would not so much as raise his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me a sinner!’ I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.

Announcements for 2016:

+Sunday School Resumes today

+TODAY Youth Bowling Party – Sun. Feb. 21st, 2016 Mt Leb. 4-6p (This event is open to families and youth and children- if you would like to attend see Fr. Daniel.)

+Mom’s Group this Thursday - 9:30-11:30 @Parish Hall (Weather Permitting)

+ Potato Peeling for Pierogies TODAY Tomorrow 9am pinching…Please join us!!

+Beginning of Lent – Mon. March 14th

+ Our Archbishop Melchisidek will make his annual visit on Sunday March 20th, which is the First Sunday of Great and Holy Lent let’s make it our goal to “Pack the House” to show our love for our Bishop!!

+Great and Holy Pashca May1st

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Rev. Daniel Mathewson - Rector

February 7th, 2016

Parish phone: 814-734-3801

25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 

Christ is in Our Midst!

                   He is and Always shall Be!

 

Afterfeast of the Meeting. St. Parthenius, Bishop of Lampsacus on the Hellespont

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

David, Stavros, Diane, Eugene Danko, Fr. Nicholas, Timothy Alberti, Vernon and Mary Baldwin, Valentina Emelianow, Paul, George, Theodore, Fr. George, Penni, James, Daleen Matya, Mary Gall, Tamara, Boris, Constantine, Marina, William, Melissa … Inquirers and Catechumens David Angelini, Becky Pineo, (Eli, Sawyer)…. the homebound… Tanya Ferra, Michael Gresh, Mary-Louise Gall, Helen Miller, Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko, military servers…Greg Hargett … With Child…Anna Rachocki, Departed… Timothy Gidus, Evelyn Van Zanten, Karen Sanford, John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White, Nikolai Emelianow, Mark Perino, Rodger, Rita, Nina.

 Tone 3           Troparion     (Resurrection)

Let the heavens rejoice!

Let the earth be glad!

For the Lord has shown strength with His arm.

He has trampled down death by death.

He has become the first born of the dead.

He has delivered us from the depths of hell,

and has granted to the world// great mercy.

 

Tone 1  Troparion(The Meeting of our Lord)

Rejoice, O Virgin Theotokos, Full of Grace!

From thee shone the Sun of Righteousness, ^Christ our God,

enlightening those who sat in darkness.

Rejoice and be glad, O righteous Elder,

thou didst accept in thine arms the ^Redeemer of our souls, Who grants us the Resurrection!

 

Tone 4            Troparion (SS Parthenius and Luke)

O God of our Fathers,

always act with kindness towards us;

take not Thy mercy from us,

but guide our lives in peace//

through the prayers of Thy saints!

 

Tone 3               Kontakion (Resurrection)

On this day Thou didst rise from the tomb, O Merciful One,

leading us from the gates of death.

On this day Adam exults as Eve rejoices;

with the Prophets and Patriarchs//

they unceasingly praise the divine majesty of Thy power.

 

Tone 1                 Kontakion                        (The Meeting of our Lord)     

By Thy Nativity Thou didst sanctify the Virgin’s womb

and didst bless Simeon’s hands, ^O Christ God.

Now Thou hast come and saved us through love.

Grant peace to all Orthodox Christians,  O only Lover of Man!

 

 36th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 3. Afterfeast of the Meeting. St. Parthenius, Bishop of Lampsacus on the Hellespont (4th c.). Ven. Luke of Hellas (ca. 946). The 1,003 Martyrs of Nicomedia (303).

Holy Scripture:

 1 Timothy 1:15-17 (Epistle)

This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am chief. However, for this reason I obtained mercy, that in me first Jesus Christ might show all longsuffering, as a pattern to those who are going to believe on Him for everlasting life. Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, to God who alone is wise, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen.

 Matthew 15:21-28 (Gospel)

Then Jesus went out from there and departed to the region of Tyre and Sidon. And behold, a woman of Canaan came from that region and cried out to Him, saying, “Have mercy on me, O Lord, Son of David! My daughter is severely demon-possessed.” But He answered her not a word. And His disciples came and urged Him, saying, “Send her away, for she cries out after us.” But He answered and said, “I was not sent except to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.” Then she came and worshiped Him, saying, “Lord, help me!”

But He answered and said, “It is not good to take the children’s bread and throw it to the little dogs.” And she said, “Yes, Lord, yet even the little dogs eat the crumbs which fall from their masters’ table.” Then Jesus answered and said to her, “O woman, great is your faith! Let it be to you as you desire.” And her daughter was healed from that very hour.

 

The soul that loves God has its rest in God and in God alone. In all the paths that men walk in in the world, they do not attain peace until they draw nigh to hope in God.

(St. Isaac the Syrian, Homily 56, 89)

Announcements for 2016:

  • Panakhida Today – (No Sunday Church School today)
  • Today Parish Council meeting  
  • Mom’s Group this Friday 9:30-11:30 Parish Hall
  • Missions Team Meeting Sun. Feb 21st
  • Youth Bowling Party – Sun. Feb. 21st, 2016 Mt Leb. 4-6p
  • Beginning of Lent – Mon. March 14th
  • Great and Holy Pashca May1st

*Special memorial donations are being accepted for beautification:

  1.   Carved wooden liturgical fans (set 1200$)
  2.   Lampadas for icons in the nave and vestibule.
  3.   Tetrapod Icon set with case  (999$)

 

 Wise Words From the Fathers

 

With all your power, ask the Lord for humility and brotherly love, because God freely gives His grace for love towards one's brother. Do an experiment on yourself: one day ask God for love towards your brother, and another day - live without love. You will see the difference.

(St. Silouan the Athonite, Writings, XVI.8)

 

Adorn yourself with truth, try to speak truth in all things; and do not support a lie, no matter who asks you. If you speak the truth and someone gets mad at you, don't be upset, but take comfort in the words of the Lord: Blessed are those who are persecuted for the sake of truth, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven (Matt. 5:10).  (St. Gennadius of Constantinople, The Golden Chain, 26,29).

 

Let there always be a preponderance of mercy with you, even though you don't feel such mercy in yourself, as God has for the world ... A cruel and merciless heart is never purified. A merciful man is the doctor of his own soul, because as it were a by a strong wind from is heart he drives out the darkness of the passions. (St. Isaac the Syrian, Homilies, 41)

 

If we were not passionately inclined to money or to vainglory, then we would not fear death or poverty. We would not know enmity or hatred, and we would not suffer from the sorrows of ourselves or others.

(St. John Chrysostom, To those at Enemity, 3.19)

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 Rev. Daniel Mathewson - Rector

January 31st, 2016

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801

 25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 Find us on the web:

 

Christ is in Our Midst! 

He is and Always shall Be!

 

Unmercinary saints Cyrus and John

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

Steve, David, Diane, Eugene Danko, Fr. Nicholas, Timothy Alberti, Vernon and Mary Baldwin, Valentina Emelianow, Paul, George, Theodore, Fr. George, Penni, James, Daleen Matya, Mary Gall, Tamara, Boris, Constantine, Marina  … Inquirers and Catechumens David Angelini, Becky Pineo, (Eli, Sawyer)…. the homebound… Tanya Ferra, Michael Gresh, Mary-Louise Gall, Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Evelyn, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko, military servers…Greg Hargett … With Child…Anna Rachocki, Departed… Evelyn Van Zanten, Robert, Rita, Nina, Karen Sanford, John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White, Nikolai Emelianow, Mark Perino

Tone 2           Troparion     (Resurrection)

 

When Thou didst descend to death, O Life immortal,

Thou didst slay hell with the splendor of Thy Godhead.

And when from the depths Thou didst raise the dead,

all the powers of heaven cried out://

“O Giver of life, Christ our God, glory to Thee!”

 

Tone 4           Troparion      (New Martyrs of Russia)

 

Today the Church of Russia forms a chorus in joy,

praising her new martyrs and confessors;

hierarchs and priests, royal passion-bearers, right-believing princes and

princesses,

venerable men and women, and all Orthodox Christians.

Having laid down their life for faith in Christ during the days of

godless persecution,

they preserved the truth by the shedding of blood.//

By their protection, O long-suffering Lord, preserve our land in Orthodoxy

till the end of the age.

 

Tone 2           Kontakion      (Resurrection)

 

Hell became afraid, O almighty Savior,

seeing the miracle of Thy Resurrection from the tomb!

The dead arose! Creation, with Adam, beheld this and rejoiced with

Thee,//

and the world, my Savior, praises Thee forever.

 

            Tone 3           Kontakion     (New Martyrs of Russia) (Today the Virgin)

 

Today the new martyrs of Rus’ stand in white robes before the Lamb of

God, and with the angels they sing to God the hymn of victory:

“Blessing, and glory, and wisdom, and praise, and honor,

and power, and strength be to our God

unto the ages of ages. Amen.”

 

35th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 2. Holy Wonderworkers and Unmercenaries Cyrus and John, and with them Martyrs Athanasia and her daughters: Theoctiste, Theodotia, and Eudoxia, at Canopus in Egypt (311). Ven. Nikita of the Kiev Caves, Bishop of Novgorod (1108). Martyrs Victorinus, Victor, Nicephorus, Claudius, Diodorus, Serapion, and Papias, of Egypt (251). Martyr Tryphænes at Cyzicus. St. Arsenios of Paros (1877).

Holy Scripture:

 

Colossians 3:12-16 (Epistle)

Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do. But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection. And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.

 

Matthew 25:14-30 (Gospel)

For the kingdom of heaven is like a man traveling to a far country, who called his own servants and delivered his goods to them. And to one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one, to each according to his own ability; and immediately he went on a journey. Then he who had received the five talents went and traded with them, and made another five talents. And likewise he who had received two gained two more also. But he who had received one went and dug in the ground, and hid his lord’s money. After a long time the lord of those servants came and settled accounts with them.

So he who had received five talents came and brought five other talents, saying, ‘Lord, you delivered to me five talents; look, I have gained five more talents besides them.’ His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’ He also who had received two talents came and said, ‘Lord, you delivered to me two talents; look, I have gained two more talents besides them.’ His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you have been faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’ Then he who had received the one talent came and said, ‘Lord, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you have not sown, and gathering where you have not scattered seed. ’And I was afraid, and went and hid your talent in the ground. Look, there you have what is yours.’ But his lord answered and said to him, ‘You wicked and lazy servant, you knew that I reap where I have not sown, and gather where I have not scattered seed. ’So you ought to have deposited my money with the bankers, and at my coming I would have received back my own with interest. ’Therefore take the talent from him, and give it to him who has ten talents. ’For to everyone who has, more will be given, and he will have abundance; but from him who does not have, even what he has will be taken away. ’And cast the unprofitable servant into theouter darkness. There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

Announcements for 2016:

  • Today Sunday Church School continues for all ages. (Adults will meet in the hall)
  • Today Ladies Altar Society meeting Sun. Jan. 31st - During Coffee Hour
  • Youth Bowling Party – Sun. Feb. 21st, 2016 Mt Leb. 4-6p
  • Parish Council Meeting – Sunday Feb. 7th -Divine Liturgy
  • Pancake breakfast – Sunday Feb. 28th
  • Beginning of Lent – Mon. March 14th
  • Great and Holy Pashca May1st

Saint Cyrus was a noted physician in the city of Alexandria, where he had been born and raised. He was a Christian and he treated the sick without charge, not only curing their bodily afflictions, but also healing their spiritual infirmities. He would say, “Whoever wishes to avoid being ill should refrain from sin, for sin is often the cause of bodily illness.” Preaching the Gospel, the holy physician converted many pagans to Christ. During the persecution by Diocletian (284-305), St Cyrus withdrew into Arabia, where he became a monk. He continued to heal people by his prayer, having received from God the gift to heal every sickness.

In the city of Edessa at this time lived the soldier John, a pious Christian. When the persecution started, he went to Jerusalem and there he heard about St Cyrus. He began to search for him, going first to Alexandria and then to Arabia. When St John finally found St Cyrus, he remained with him and became his faithful follower.

They learned of the arrest of the Christian woman Athanasia and her three young daughters. Theoctiste was fifteen; Theodota, was thirteen; and Eudoxia, was eleven. Sts Cyrus and John hastened to the prison to help them. They were concerned that faced with torture, the women might renounce Christ.

Sts Cyrus and John gave them courage to endure what lay before them. Learning of this, the ruler of the city arrested Sts Cyrus and John, and seeing their steadfast and fearless confession of faith in Christ, he brought Athanasia and her daughters to witness their torture. The tyrant did not refrain from any form of torture against the holy martyrs. The women were not frightened by the sufferings of Sts Cyrus and John, but courageously continued to confess Christ. They were flogged and then beheaded, receiving their crowns of martyrdom.

At the same place they executed the Holy Unmercenaries Cyrus and John. Christians buried their bodies in the church of the holy Evangelist Mark. In the fifth century the relics of Sts Cyrus and John were transferred from Canopis to Manuphin. Later on their relics were transferred to Rome, and from there to Munchen (Munich) (another account is located under June 28).

Sts Cyrus and John are invoked by those who have difficulty in sleeping.

 

Saint John, a pious Christian soldier, lived in Edessa during the persecution by Diocletian (284-305). When the persecution started, he went to Jerusalem and there he heard about St Cyrus. He began to search for him, going first to Alexandria and then to Arabia. When St John finally found St Cyrus, he remained with him and became his faithful follower.

They learned of the arrest of the Christian woman Athanasia and her three young daughters. Theoctiste was fifteen; Theodota, was thirteen; and Eudoxia, was eleven. Sts Cyrus and John hastened to the prison to help them. They were concerned that faced with torture, the women might renounce Christ.

Sts Cyrus and John gave them courage to endure what lay before them. Learning of this, the ruler of the city arrested Sts Cyrus and John, and seeing their steadfast and fearless confession of faith in Christ, he brought Athanasia and her daughters to witness their torture. The tyrant did not refrain from any form of torture against the holy martyrs. The women were not frightened by the sufferings of Sts Cyrus and John, but courageously continued to confess Christ. They were flogged and then beheaded, receiving their crowns of martyrdom.

At the same place they executed the Holy Unmercenaries Cyrus and John. Christians buried their bodies in the church of the holy Evangelist Mark. In the fifth century the relics of Sts Cyrus and John were transferred from Canopis to Manuphin. Later on their relics were transferred to Rome, and from there to Munchen (Munich) (another account is located under June 28).

Sts Cyrus and John are invoked by those who have difficulty in sleeping.

Announcements for 2016:

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 Rev. Daniel Mathewson - Rector

January 24st, 2016

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801

 25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 Find us on the web:

 

Christ is in Our Midst!

He is and Always shall Be!

 

St Anthony the Great

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior. Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel. 

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

Diane, Eugene Danko, Fr. Nicholas, Timothy Alberti, Vernon and Mary Baldwin, Valentina Emelianow, Paul, George, Theodore, Fr. George, Penni, James, Daleen Matya, Mary Gall, Tamara, Boris, Konstantinos, Marina … Inquirers and Catechumens  David Angelini, Becky Pineo, (Eli, Sawyer)…. the homebound… Tanya Ferra, Michael Gresh, Mary-Louise Gall, Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Evelyn, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko, military servers…Greg Hargett … With Child…Anna Rachocki, Departed… Rodger, Rita, Nina, Karen Sanford, John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White, Nikolai Emelianow, Mark Perino

 

 Tone 8            Troparion         (Resurrection)

 

Thou didst descend from on high, O Merciful One!

Thou didst accept the three day burial to free us from our sufferings!//

O Lord, our Life and Resurrection, glory to Thee!

           

Tone 4Troparion        (Venerable Father Anthony the Great)

 

Thou didst imitate the ways of zealous Elijah,

and didst follow the straight path of John the Baptist.

Thou becamest a desert-dweller,

strengthening the world by thy prayers.//

O Father Anthony, intercede with Christ God that our souls may be saved!

 

Tone 8             Kontakion        (Resurrection)

 

By rising from the tomb, Thou hast raised the dead and resurrected Adam.

Eve exults in Thy Resurrection,

and the world celebrates Thy rising from the dead, O greatly

Merciful One!

 

Tone 2Kontakion        (Venerable Father Anthony the Great)

 

Thou didst reject the tumult of this life

living thy life to the end in solitude, imitating the Baptist

in every way.

With him we honor thee, most venerable Anthony,//

thou foundation of the Fathers.

 

33rd SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 8. Venerable and Godbearing Father Anthony the Great (356). Ven. Anthony of Dymsk (Novgorod—ca. 1224). Ven. Anthony of Chernoezérsk (16th c.).

 

Holy Scripture:

 

Colossians 1:12-18 (Epistle)

giving thanks to the Father who has qualified us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in the light. He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love, in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins. He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.

For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist. And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence.

 

Hebrews 13:17-21 (Epistle, Saint)

Obey those who rule over you, and be submissive, for they watch out for your souls, as those who must give account. Let them do so with joy and not with grief, for that would be unprofitable for you.Pray for us; for we are confident that we have a good conscience, in all things desiring to live honorably.But I especially urge you to do this, that I may be restored to you the sooner.Now may the God of peace who brought up our Lord Jesus from the dead, that great Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant,make you complete in every good work to do His will, working in you what is well pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.

 

Luke 18:18-27 (Gospel)

Now a certain ruler asked Him, saying, “Good Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?”  So Jesus said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. You know the commandments: ‘Do not commit adultery,’ ‘Do not murder,’ ‘Do not steal,’ ‘Do not bear false witness,’ ‘Honor your father and your mother.’ And he said, “All these things I have kept from my youth.” So when Jesus heard these things, He said to him, “You still lack one thing. Sell all that you have and distribute to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.” But when he heard this, he became very sorrowful, for he was very rich. And when Jesus saw that he became very sorrowful, He said, “How hard it is for those who have riches to enter the kingdom of God! For it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God. And those who heard it said, “Who then can be saved?” But He said, “The things which are impossible with men are possible with God.”

 

Luke 6:17-23 (Gospel, Saint)

And He came down with them and stood on a level place with a crowd of His disciples and a great multitude of people from all Judea and Jerusalem, and from the seacoast of Tyre and Sidon, who came to hear Him and be healed of their diseases,as well as those who were tormented with unclean spirits. And they were healed.And the whole multitude sought to touch Him, for power went out from Him and healed them all.Then He lifted up His eyes toward His disciples, and said: Blessed are you poor, for yours is the kingdom of God.

Blessed are you who hunger now, for you shall be filled. Blessed are you who weep now, for you shall laugh. Blessed are you when men hate you, and when they exclude you, and revile you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of Man’s sake. Rejoice in that day and leap for joy! For indeed your reward is great in heaven, for in like manner their fathers did to the prophets.

 

Today Sunday Church School continues for all ages.

Today Missions Team Meeting -during Coffee Hour

Mom’s Group this Friday 9:30-11:30 Parish Hall

Ladies Altar Society meeting Sun. Jan. 31st During Coffee Hour

Men’s Fellowship Meeting Sun., Jan. 24th

Ice Skating at PPG Rink – Sun. Jan. 31st 3:30-5:30pm

Youth Bowling Party – Sun. Feb. 21st, 2016 Mt Leb. 4-6p

Beginning of Lent – Mon. March 14th

Great and Holy Pashca May1st

 

The Sayings of St. Anthony:

1. When the holy Abba Anthony lived in the desert he was beset by accidie (depression), and attacked by many sinful thoughts. He said to God, “Lord, I wand to be saved but these thoughts do not leave me alone; what shall I do in my affliction? How can I be saved?” A short while afterwards, when he got up to go out, Anthony saw a man like himself sitting at his work, getting up from his work to pray, then sitting down again and plaiting a rope, then getting up again to pray. It was an angel of the Lord sent to correct and reassure him. He heard the angel saying to him, “Do this and you will be saved.” At these words, Anthony was filled with joy and courage. He did this, and he was saved. --From the sayings of the Desert Fathers

2. When the same Abba Anthony thought about the depth of the judgments of God, he asked, “Lord, how is it that some die when they are young, while others drag on to extreme old age? Why are there those who are poor and those who are rich? Why do wicked men proper and why are the just in need? He heard a voice answering him, “Anthony, keep your attention on yourself; these things are according to the judgment of God, and it is not to your advantage to known anything about them.”

3. Someone asked Abba Anthony, “What must one do in order to please God?” The old man replied, “Pay attention to what I tell you: whoever you may be, always have God before your eyes, whatever you do, do it according to the testimony of the holy Scriptures; in whatever place you live, do not easily leave it. Keep these three precepts and you will be saved.”

     

Announcements for 2016:

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 Rev. Daniel Mathewson - Rector

January 24st, 2016

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801

 25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 Find us on the web:

 

Christ is in Our Midst!

He is and Always shall Be!

 

St Anthony the Great

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior. Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel. 

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

Diane, Eugene Danko, Fr. Nicholas, Timothy Alberti, Vernon and Mary Baldwin, Valentina Emelianow, Paul, George, Theodore, Fr. George, Penni, James, Daleen Matya, Mary Gall, Tamara, Boris, Konstantinos, Marina … Inquirers and Catechumens  David Angelini, Becky Pineo, (Eli, Sawyer)…. the homebound… Tanya Ferra, Michael Gresh, Mary-Louise Gall, Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Evelyn, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko, military servers…Greg Hargett … With Child…Anna Rachocki, Departed… Rodger, Rita, Nina, Karen Sanford, John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White, Nikolai Emelianow, Mark Perino

 

 Tone 8            Troparion         (Resurrection)

 

Thou didst descend from on high, O Merciful One!

Thou didst accept the three day burial to free us from our sufferings!//

O Lord, our Life and Resurrection, glory to Thee!

           

Tone 4Troparion        (Venerable Father Anthony the Great)

 

Thou didst imitate the ways of zealous Elijah,

and didst follow the straight path of John the Baptist.

Thou becamest a desert-dweller,

strengthening the world by thy prayers.//

O Father Anthony, intercede with Christ God that our souls may be saved!

 

Tone 8             Kontakion        (Resurrection)

 

By rising from the tomb, Thou hast raised the dead and resurrected Adam.

Eve exults in Thy Resurrection,

and the world celebrates Thy rising from the dead, O greatly

Merciful One!

 

Tone 2Kontakion        (Venerable Father Anthony the Great)

 

Thou didst reject the tumult of this life

living thy life to the end in solitude, imitating the Baptist

in every way.

With him we honor thee, most venerable Anthony,//

thou foundation of the Fathers.

 

33rd SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 8. Venerable and Godbearing Father Anthony the Great (356). Ven. Anthony of Dymsk (Novgorod—ca. 1224). Ven. Anthony of Chernoezérsk (16th c.).

 

Holy Scripture:

 

Colossians 1:12-18 (Epistle)

giving thanks to the Father who has qualified us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in the light. He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love, in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins. He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.

For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist. And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence.

 

Hebrews 13:17-21 (Epistle, Saint)

Obey those who rule over you, and be submissive, for they watch out for your souls, as those who must give account. Let them do so with joy and not with grief, for that would be unprofitable for you.Pray for us; for we are confident that we have a good conscience, in all things desiring to live honorably.But I especially urge you to do this, that I may be restored to you the sooner.Now may the God of peace who brought up our Lord Jesus from the dead, that great Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant,make you complete in every good work to do His will, working in you what is well pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.

 

Luke 18:18-27 (Gospel)

Now a certain ruler asked Him, saying, “Good Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?”  So Jesus said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. You know the commandments: ‘Do not commit adultery,’ ‘Do not murder,’ ‘Do not steal,’ ‘Do not bear false witness,’ ‘Honor your father and your mother.’ And he said, “All these things I have kept from my youth.” So when Jesus heard these things, He said to him, “You still lack one thing. Sell all that you have and distribute to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.” But when he heard this, he became very sorrowful, for he was very rich. And when Jesus saw that he became very sorrowful, He said, “How hard it is for those who have riches to enter the kingdom of God! For it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God. And those who heard it said, “Who then can be saved?” But He said, “The things which are impossible with men are possible with God.”

 

Luke 6:17-23 (Gospel, Saint)

And He came down with them and stood on a level place with a crowd of His disciples and a great multitude of people from all Judea and Jerusalem, and from the seacoast of Tyre and Sidon, who came to hear Him and be healed of their diseases,as well as those who were tormented with unclean spirits. And they were healed.And the whole multitude sought to touch Him, for power went out from Him and healed them all.Then He lifted up His eyes toward His disciples, and said: Blessed are you poor, for yours is the kingdom of God.

Blessed are you who hunger now, for you shall be filled. Blessed are you who weep now, for you shall laugh. Blessed are you when men hate you, and when they exclude you, and revile you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of Man’s sake. Rejoice in that day and leap for joy! For indeed your reward is great in heaven, for in like manner their fathers did to the prophets.

 

Today Sunday Church School continues for all ages.

Today Missions Team Meeting -during Coffee Hour

Mom’s Group this Friday 9:30-11:30 Parish Hall

Ladies Altar Society meeting Sun. Jan. 31st During Coffee Hour

Men’s Fellowship Meeting Sun., Jan. 24th

Ice Skating at PPG Rink – Sun. Jan. 31st 3:30-5:30pm

Youth Bowling Party – Sun. Feb. 21st, 2016 Mt Leb. 4-6p

Beginning of Lent – Mon. March 14th

Great and Holy Pashca May1st

 

The Sayings of St. Anthony:

1. When the holy Abba Anthony lived in the desert he was beset by accidie (depression), and attacked by many sinful thoughts. He said to God, “Lord, I wand to be saved but these thoughts do not leave me alone; what shall I do in my affliction? How can I be saved?” A short while afterwards, when he got up to go out, Anthony saw a man like himself sitting at his work, getting up from his work to pray, then sitting down again and plaiting a rope, then getting up again to pray. It was an angel of the Lord sent to correct and reassure him. He heard the angel saying to him, “Do this and you will be saved.” At these words, Anthony was filled with joy and courage. He did this, and he was saved. --From the sayings of the Desert Fathers

2. When the same Abba Anthony thought about the depth of the judgments of God, he asked, “Lord, how is it that some die when they are young, while others drag on to extreme old age? Why are there those who are poor and those who are rich? Why do wicked men proper and why are the just in need? He heard a voice answering him, “Anthony, keep your attention on yourself; these things are according to the judgment of God, and it is not to your advantage to known anything about them.”

3. Someone asked Abba Anthony, “What must one do in order to please God?” The old man replied, “Pay attention to what I tell you: whoever you may be, always have God before your eyes, whatever you do, do it according to the testimony of the holy Scriptures; in whatever place you live, do not easily leave it. Keep these three precepts and you will be saved.”

     

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 Rev. Daniel Mathewson - Rector

January 10th, 2016

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801

 25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 

 Christ is in Our Midst!  He is and Always shall Be!

 After Feast of Theophany St Gregory of Nyssa, St Theophan the Recluse, St Theosebia

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

Diane, Eugene Danko, Fr. Nicholas, Timothy Alberti, Vernon and Mary Baldwin, Valentina Emelianow, Paul, George, Theodore, Fr. George, Penni, James, Daleen Matya, Mary Gall, Tamara, Boris, Konstantinos, Jen, Kate, Marina  … Inquirers and Catechumens David Angelini, Becky Pineo, (Eli, Sawyer)…. the homebound… Tanya Ferra, Michael Gresh, Mary-Louise Gall, Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Evelyn, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko, military servers…Greg Hargett … With Child…Anna Rachocki, Departed… Rita, Nina, Karen Sanford, John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White, Nikolai Emelianow, Mark Perino

 

 Tone 7            Troparion         (Resurrection)

 

By Thy Cross Thou didst destroy death.

To the thief Thou didst open Paradise.

For the Myrrhbearers Thou didst change weeping into joy,

and Thou didst command Thy disciples, O Christ God,

to proclaim that Thou art risen,//

granting the world great mercy.

 

Tone 1Troparion of the Feast

 

When Thou, O Lord, wast baptized in the Jordan,

the worship of the Trinity was made manifest.

For the voice of the Father bore witness to Thee,

and called Thee His beloved Son;

and the Spirit in the form of a dove

confirmed the truthfulness of His word.

O Christ our God, Who hast revealed Thyself//

and hast enlightened the world, glory to Thee.

 

Tone 4    * Troparion (SS Gregory and Dometian)

 

O God of our Fathers,

always act with kindness towards us;

take not Thy mercy from us,

but guide our lives in peace//

through the prayers of the hierarchs Gregory and Dometian!

Tone 7Kontakion        (Resurrection)  

 

The dominion of death can no longer hold mankind captive,

for Christ descended, shattering and destroying its powers.

Hell is bound, while the Prophets rejoice and cry:

“The Savior has come to those in faith;//

enter, you faithful, into the Resurrection!”

 

Tone 1             Kontakion        (St Gregory)

 

Thou didst keep watch with the eyes of thy soul, O holy bishop,

revealing thyself as a watchful pastor for the world.

With the staff of thy wisdom and thy fervent intercession,

thou drovest away all ^heretics like wolves,//

and didst preserve thy flock free from harm, O most wise Gregory.

 

 

32nd SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 7. Afterfeast of the Theophany. Sunday after Theophany. St. Gregory, Bishop of Nyssa (4th c.). St. Dometian, Bishop of Melitene (601). St. Marcian, Presbyter, of Constantinople (5th c.). Ven. Paul, Abbot of Obnora (Vologdá—1429). Ven. Macarius, Abbot, of Pisma (14th c.). Bl. Theosebia the Deaconess, sister of Ss. Basil the Great and Gregory of Nyssa (385). Ven. Antipas the Athonite (1882). St. Theophan the Recluse, Bishop of Tambov (1894).

 

Ephesians 4:7-13 (Epistle, Sunday After)

But to each one of us grace was given according to the measure of Christ’s gift.Therefore He says: “When He ascended on high, He led captivity captive, And gave gifts to men.”(Now this, “He ascended” – what does it mean but that He also first descended into the lower parts of the earth?  He who descended is also the One who ascended far above all the heavens, that He might fill all things.)And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers,for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ,till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ;

 

Matthew 4:12-17 (Gospel, Sunday After)

Now when Jesus heard that John had been put in prison, He departed to Galilee.

And leaving Nazareth, He came and dwelt in Capernaum, which is by the sea, in the regions of Zebulun and Naphtali, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Isaiah the prophet, saying: The land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, By the way of the sea, beyond the Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles: The people who sat in darkness have seen a great light, And upon those who sat in the region and shadow of death Light has dawned.” From that time Jesus began to preach and to say, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”

Blessed Theosebia the Deaconess, sister of Sts Basil the Great and Gregory of Nyssa  Commemorated on January 10

           

            Saint Theosebia the Deaconess was the sister of Sts Basil the Great, Gregory of Nyssa, and Peter, Bishop of Sebaste. She was a virgin and served the Holy Church as a deaconess, caring for the sick, distributing food to vagrants, raising orphans and preparing women for holy Baptism.

                  When her brother, St Gregory of Nyssa, was in exile for three years, St. Theosebia was with him and she shared in all the tribulations of a life of wandering. St. Theosebia died in 385, and St Gregory the Theologian praised her in a eulogy.

 

Other Announcements --

 

Parish Youth Group Meeting – Saturday, Jan. 16th 3pm-Vespers

Planning of yearly events and meetings – Art project

 

Ice Skating at PPG Rink – Sun. Jan. 31st 3:30-5:30pm

 

Youth Bowling Party – Sun. Feb. 21st, 2016 Mt Leb. 4-6p

 

 The Abbes and sisters of the Transfiguration Monastery invite you to the 25th Anniversary of the Repose of Mother Alexandra

Thursday, January 21st

9:30 Divine Liturgy

11:00 Memorial Service

Noon: Luncheon

 

PRO-LIFE BREAKFAST

January 16, 2016  ...  9:00 a.m. Bayfront Convention Center 1 Sassafras Pier Erie

            The Pro-Life Breakfast will feature another nationally recognized speaker: Steven Mosher, the President of the Population Research Institute.

Steven Mosher is an internationally recognized authority on China and population issues, as well as an acclaimed author, speaker. He has worked tirelessly since 1979 to fight coercive population control programs and has helped hundreds of thousands of women and families worldwide over the years.

            The Pro-Life Breakfast will be held at Erie's Bayfront Convention Center, 1 Sassafras Pier, on Saturday, January 16. The doors will open at 8 a.m. and the program will begin at 9 a.m. Come early and browse our information and merchandise displays.

            Free babysitting with entertaining activities for children of all ages will be available during the speaking portion of the program. Parents are encouraged to take advantage of this service so they are better able to devote their full attention to all of the speakers while the kids are also enjoying themselves.Blessing of Homes

      

“There is no question about that which is bred in the uterus, both growing, and moving from place to place. It remains, therefore, that we must think that the point of commencement of existence is one and the same for body and soul.”

— St. Gregory of Nyssa

 

Announcements for 2016:

  • Today Sunday Church School continues for all ages.
  • Today Parish Council Meeting Sun. Jan. 10th Following Coffee Hour
  • Missions Team Meeting Sun. 17th during Coffee Hour
  • Ladies Altar Society meeting Sun. Jan.24th During Coffee Hour
  • Men’s Fellowship Meeting Sun., Jan. 31st
  • Ice Skating at PPG Rink – Sun. Jan. 31st 3:30-5:30pm
  • Youth Bowling Party – Sun. Feb. 21st, 2016 Mt Leb. 4-6p
  • Beginning of Lent – Mon. March 14th
  • Great and Holy Pashca May1st
  • Missions Team Trip to Alaska July 1st -11th (Tentative date)

 St. Theophan the Recluse  On his life … “Beginning in 1872, he cut off all relationships with people (except for his confessor) and no longer left his cell to attend church. He built a small chapel in his quarters and dedicated it to the Lord’s Baptism. For ten years he served there on Sundays and Feast Days. For the last eleven years of his life he served every day by himself.     Sometimes he would sing, and sometimes he kept completely silent.       Whenever anyone visited him on business, Bishop Theophan would reply with as few words as possible, then immerse himself in prayer. If anyone sent him money, he would distribute it to the poor, keeping only a small portion to purchase books.

                  Whenever he was not occupied with writing or praying, the reclusive bishop worked at carpentry or painting icons. He received from twenty to forty letters each day, and he answered all of them. He was able to discern each writer’s spiritual condition, then give detailed answers to the questions of those who were struggling for the salvation of their souls.

            He once wrote…”Refuse to listen to the devil when he whispers to you: give me now, and you will give tomorrow to God. No, no! Spend all the hours of your life in a way pleasing to God; keep in your mind the thought that after the present hour you will not be given another and that you will have to render a strict account for every minute of this present hour.”

-St Theophan the Recluse from Unseen Warfare and oca.org

 

“When God revealed himself, he united himself with our mortal nature in order to deify humanity through this close relation with deity. Since this is so, through his flesh, constituted by bread and wine, he implants himself in all believers.”

— St. Gregory of Nyssa, Catechetical Oration

                        

Why we bless our homes…

                  We, as Christians, are engaged in a spiritual and physical struggle to reclaim fallen nature for the Kingdom of God. We often talk about this in terms of our own salvation, but the Church, addressing all of creation in a wholistic manner, also reaches out and reclaims a bit here and a bit there of creation in general. We do this in order that we might restore the usefulness of creation for working out our own salvation. Hence we bless anything that might help us in our salvation - and by blessing it we reclaim it for the Kingdom of God.

 

            There are few things more vital to our lives than our homes. In our homes we pray, we work, we talk to others, we order our lives, we work out our marriages, etc. What more important place to reclaim for the Kingdom of God - or is it better to continue living in a place which is occupied by the enemy? For the most effective working out of our salvation, we must drive the enemy out of our homes, and keep him at bay by our prayers, our righteous life, and the annual sprinkling by Holy Water at Theophany.

Source: http://www.orthodox.net/articles/whybless.html

 

Sanctification of the home

            The sanctification of the home takes place with prayer and the sprinkling of holy water. The priest, at this annual visit, asks God to have mercy on the house, to rid it of every evil and to fill if with every blessing. Everyone of the house prays together for the living and the dead of the family, and all who live and have lived in the house. They all sing the hymn of salvation and process from room to room while the priest blesses the house.

 

Preparation

            Traditions of the ceremony differ according to local custom, but these general guidelines should are observed:

            A candle with an icon and some holy water should be placed in a suitable place, such as kitchen or dining room table, or a home altar.

            Also, a list of first names for whom prayers are to be offered, including members of the family and all those living in the house. The list should have a clear distinction between the living an the dead.

            If it is the practice to give the priest a gift, it should not be placed with the holy objects on the table. It can be prepared in advanced, but given at the conclusion of the service.

 

The ceremony

When the priest comes, all who are present in the house should gather around the icon with the candle. They should, if they are able to join in, say theTrisagion Prayers and sing of the Troparion of the Feast of Epiphany. Then a family member leads the priest through the house with the candle. As he goes, he sprinkles holy water, and prays for a blessing upon each room and the activity that goes on there. When they have gone through the entire house, the family gathers again around the table and the priest blesses each person present.

Please sign up to get your home blessed.

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 Rev. Daniel Mathewson - Rector

December 6th, 2015         

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801 

 25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

  

Christ is in Our Midst! He is and Always shall Be!

 St Nicholas the Wonderworker

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

Eugene Danko, Fr. Nicholas, Timothy Alberti, Vernon and Mary Baldwin, Mellissa Baldwin, Michael Gresh, Mary-Louise Gall, Tanya Ferra, Valentina, Evelyn, Paul, George, Theodore, Fr. George, Penni, James, Daleen Matya, Tamara, Boris, Konstantinos, Jen, Kate, Rita, Marina  … Inquirers and Catechumens David Angelini, Becky Pineo, (Eli, Sawyer)…. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko,… military servers…Greg Hargett…. The Newly Married James and Judith LynchTristan and Mary Gall … With Child…Anna Rachocki, Departed… Karen Sanford, John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White, Nikolai Emelianow, Mark Perino

Services this Week and Next:

Wednesday, Dec. 9th - Akathist to The Mother of God 

Friday, Dec. 11th- 6th Hour Prayers - 12noon – EU Chapel

Saturday, Dec. 12th – Great Vespers for St. Herman – 6pm (Parish Choir practice to follow)

Sunday, Dec. 13th – Divine Liturgy – 9:30am  - 3rd Hour Prayers  - 9:15am

Wednesday, Dec. 16th – Great Vespers – 6pm (Holy Prophet Daniel and the 3 holy Youths)

Thursday, Dec, 17th – Divine Liturgy - 9:30 am

Saturday, Dec. 19th – Panakhida and luncheon in Memory of Nickoli Emelianow -11am

 

Announcements:

 

  • TODAY Sunday School --A Luncheon and visit from St. Nickolas.
  • Parish Choir Practice for Nativity – Sat. December 12th after Vespers.

St. Herman of Alaska Bake Sale

Sunday, December 13th, 2015

Following Divine Liturgy

(Baked Goods may be donated- See Alice or Terry)

 

TODAY St. Nicholas Day – Sunday December 6th, Divine Liturgy followed by a Luncheon sponsored by the Ladies Altar Society

 with a special visit from the St. Nic. himself!

Door Prize Quiz, Games, music, food…

 

SUNDAY SCHOOL NATIVITY RETREAT SATURDAY DECEMBER 19

3pm- Vespers

   Activities, confession, food…

 

Events Upcoming Outside the Parish:

TODAY Dec. 6th – St. Nicholas Day Decorating Party – Archbishop’s Residence – 4-6pm

Dec. 27-30 - Winter Retreat, Antiochian Village, Ligonier, PA, college students. (See Fr. Daniel for more info.)

Dec. 31 - Retreat at The Orthodox Monastery of the Transfiguration, Ellwood City, PA, - college students

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 

Rev. Daniel Mathewson - Rector

Nov. 8th , 2015         

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801

 25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 Christ is in Our Midst!  He is and Always shall Be!

 

Synaxsis of the Archangel michael

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior. Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel. 

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

 Fr. Nicholas, Timothy Alberti, Vernon  and Mary Baldwin, Mellissa Godfrey, Michael Gresh, Mary-Louise Gall, Tanya Ferra, Valentina, Evelyn, Paul, George, Theodore, Fr. George, Penni, James, … Inquirers and Catechumens David Angelini, Becky Pineo, (Eli, Sawyer)…. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko,… military servers…Greg Hargett…. The Newly Married James and Judith LynchTristan and Mary Gall … With Child…Anna Rachocki, Departed… Karen Sanford, John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White, Nikolai Emelianow, Mark Perino

 

Today’s Hymns

 Tone 6            Troparion       (Resurrection)

The angelic Powers were at Thy tomb;

the guards became as dead men.

Mary stood by Thy grave,

seeking Thy most pure body.

Thou didst capture hell not being tempted by it.

Thou didst come to the Virgin, granting life.//

O Lord, Who didst rise from the dead, glory to Thee.  

 

Troparion — Tone 4

First-enthroned of the apostles, / teachers of the universe: / Entreat the Master of all / to grant peace to the world, / and to our souls great mercy!

 

Kontakion — Tone 2

O Lord, You have taken up to eternal rest / and to the enjoyment of Your blessings / the two divinely-inspired preachers, the leaders of the Apostles, / for You have accepted their labors and deaths as a sweet-smelling sacrifice, / for You alone know what lies in the hearts of men.

 

Tone 4 Troparion          (Angels)

O Commanders of the heavenly hosts,

we who are unworthy beseech you:

by your prayers encompass us beneath the wings of your immaterial

glory,

and faithfully preserve us who fall down and cry to you://

Deliver us from all harm, for you are the Commanders

of the Powers on high!

 

Tone 6             Kontakion        (Resurrection)

When Christ God the Giver of Life,

raised all of the dead from the valleys of misery with His mighty hand,

He bestowed resurrection on the human race.//

He is the Savior of all, the Resurrection, the Life, and the God of all.

 

Tone 2Kontakion        (Angels)

Commanders of God’s armies

and ministers of the divine glory,

princes of the bodiless Angels

and guides of mankind;

ask for what is good for us, and for great mercy,//

O Supreme Commanders of the Bodiless Hosts.

 

22nd SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 5. Holy Wonderworkers and Unmercenaries Cosmas and Damian of Mesopotamia, and their mother, St. Theodota. Hieromartyrs John the Bishop and Jacob (James) the Presbyter, of Persia (ca. 345). Martyrs Cyrenia and Juliana in Cilicia (4th c.). Martyr Hermenegild the Goth of Spain (586). Martyrs Cæsarius, Dacius, Sabbas, Sabinian, Agrippa, Adrian, and Thomas, at Damascus (7th c.). Monk Martyrs Jacob, Jacob the Deacon, and Dionysius, of Prodromou (Mt. Athos—1520).

 

Ephesians 2:4-10 (Epistle) But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us,even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved),and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus,that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God,not of works, lest anyone should boast.For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.

Hebrews 2:2-10 (Epistle, Angels)

For if the word spoken through angels proved steadfast, and every transgression and disobedience received a just reward, how shall we escape if we neglect so great a salvation, which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed to us by those who heard Him, God also bearing witness both with signs and wonders, with various miracles, and gifts of the Holy Spirit, according to His own will? For He has not put the world to come, of which we speak, in subjection to angels. But one testified in a certain place, saying: “What is man that You are mindful of him, Or the son of man that You take care of him?  You have made him a little lower than the angels; You have crowned him with glory and honor, And set him over the works of Your hands. You have put all things in subjection under his feet.” For in that He put all in subjection under him, He left nothing that is not put under him. But now we do not yet see all things put under him. But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels, for the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, that He, by the grace of God, might taste death for everyone. For it was fitting for Him, for whom are all things and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons to glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.

Luke 8:41-56 (Gospel)

And behold, there came a man named Jairus, and he was a ruler of the synagogue. And he fell down at Jesus’ feet and begged Him to come to his house,for he had an only daughter about twelve years of age, and she was dying. But as He went, the multitudes thronged Him.Now a woman, having a flow of blood for twelve years, who had spent all her livelihood on physicians and could not be healed by any,came from behind and touched the border of His garment. And immediately her flow of blood stopped.And Jesus said, “Who touched Me?” When all denied it, Peter and those with him said, “Master, the multitudes throng and press You, and You say, ‘Who touched Me?’ “But Jesus said, “Somebody touched Me, for I perceived power going out from Me.”Now when the woman saw that she was not hidden, she came trembling; and falling down before Him, she declared to Him in the presence of all the people the reason she had touched Him and how she was healed immediately.And He said to her, “Daughter, be of good cheer; your faith has made you well. Go in peace.”While He was still speaking, someone came from the ruler of the synagogue’s house, saying to him, “Your daughter is dead. Do not trouble the Teacher.”But when Jesus heard it, He answered him, saying, “Do not be afraid; only believe, and she will be made well.”When He came into the house, He permitted no one to go in except Peter, James, and John, and the father and mother of the girl.Now all wept and mourned for her; but He said, “Do not weep; she is not dead, but sleeping.And they ridiculed Him, knowing that she was dead.But He put them all outside, took her by the hand and called, saying, “Little girl, arise.”Then her spirit returned, and she arose immediately. And He commanded that she be given something to eat.And her parents were astonished, but He charged them to tell no one what had happened.

Luke 10:16-21 (Gospel, Angels)

He who hears you hears Me, he who rejects you rejects Me, and he who rejects Me rejects Him who sent Me. Then the seventy returned with joy, saying, “Lord, even the demons are subject to us in Your name.” And He said to them, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you. Nevertheless do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rather rejoice because your names are written in heaven. In that hour Jesus rejoiced in the Spirit and said, “I thank You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that You have hidden these things from the wise and prudent and revealed them to babes. Even so, Father, for so it seemed good in Your sight.

            

Announcements:

TODAY Sunday Church school Continues for all ages. Children are released at the end of the Divine Liturgy. High School Students are invited to join Mr. Shontz’s class.

TODAY Ladies Alter Society will meet to elect officers for the coming year.

Parish Council Meeting - Wednesday Nov.11th, 5:30pm Panakhida Meeting follows

Sts. Peter and Paul Annual Meeting, Sunday November 15th

Parish Council positions open: 2 Trustees and the office of President, please see Rdr. Andrew or Fr. Daniel if you would like to nominate someone for these openings.

As we plan a balanced budget for the coming year we would ask that you again make a commitment pledge for the upcoming year. There is a letter and attached pledge card in the vestibule, please take one and prayerfully make your pledge for the up coming year.

Youth and Young Adult Retreat, Holy Assumption of St. Mary Orthodox Church, Southside, Pittsburgh. This is a service retreat , we will be helping with the annual Thanksgiving dinner preparation for needy families in the city. Vladyka Melchesidek will be joining us. Divine Liturgy will be served for the Feast Day at 9am with a brunch to follow. After serving we will visit the market district. Depart 7am- Return 7pm Bring cash for late lunch.

Events Upcoming Outside the Parish:

Dec. 7 - Decorating Party at the Archbishop's Residence, 3-5PM, all youth and families are welcome.

Dec. 27-30 - Winter Retreat, Antiochian Village, Ligonier, PA, college students. (See Fr. Daniel for more info.)

Dec. 31 - Retreat at The Orthodox Monastery of the Transfiguration, Ellwood City, PA, - college students.

Jan. 2, 2015 - Party with the Archbishop, Archdiocesan Center, 5-9PM, High school seniors and college students.

Jan. 25, 2015 - Winter Ice Skating Party, PPG Ice Rink, Downtown, Pittsburgh, 3-5PM – Families invited

Feb. 15, 2015 - Youth/Family Bowling Party, Mt. Lebanon Lanes, 3-5PM.

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Rev. Daniel Mathewson - Rector

Nov. 1st , 2015         

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801

 25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 

 Christ is in Our Midst!  He is and Always shall Be!

 

Unmercenaries Cosmos and Damian

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior. Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel. 

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

 

Fr. Nicholas, Timothy Alberti, Vernon  and Mary Baldwin, Mellissa Godfrey Michael Gresh, Mary-Louise Gall, Tanya Ferra, Lisa, Valentina, Evelyn, Paul, George, Theodore, Fr. George, Penni, James, … Inquirers and Catechumens David Angelini, Becky Pineo, Eli, Sawyer…. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko,… military servers…Greg Hargett…. The Newly Married …Tristan and Mary Gall … Travelers…, Departed… Karen Sanford, John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White, Nikolai Emelianow, Mark

 

Services this Week and Next:

6th Hour prayers – Fri. Nov. 6th– The Chapel at Edinboro University

Saturday Nov. 7th –NO Great Vespers 

Divine Liturgy– Sun. Nov. 8th  St. Michael and the Synaxsis of the Archangels- 9:30am – Hours 9:15

 

Today’s Hymns

 Tone 5            Troparion       (Resurrection)

Let us, the faithful, praise and worship the Word,

co-eternal with the Father and the Spirit,

born for our salvation from the Virgin;

for He willed to be lifted up on the Cross in the flesh,

to endure death,

and to raise the dead//

by His glorious Resurrection.

 Troparion — Tone 4

First-enthroned of the apostles, / teachers of the universe: / Entreat the Master of all / to grant peace to the world, / and to our souls great mercy!

 Kontakion — Tone 2

O Lord, You have taken up to eternal rest / and to the enjoyment of Your blessings / the two divinely-inspired preachers, the leaders of the Apostles, / for You have accepted their labors and deaths as a sweet-smelling sacrifice, / for You alone know what lies in the hearts of men.

 

Tone 8            Troparion      (Saints Cosmas and Damian)

O holy Unmercenaries and Wonderworkers,

O Cosmas and Damian, heal our infirmities.//

Freely ye have received; freely  ye give unto us.

 

Tone 5            Kontakion      (Resurrection)

Thou didst descend into hell, O my Savior,

shattering its gates as Almighty,

resurrecting the dead as Creator,

and destroying the sting of death.

Thou hast delivered Adam from the curse, O Lover of man,//

and we cry to Thee: O Lord, save us!

 

Tone 2            Kontakion     (Saints Cosmas and Damian)

Having received the grace of healing,

ye grant healing to those in need.

Glorious wonder-workers and healers, Cosmas and Damian,

visit us and put down the insolence of our enemies,//

and bring healing to the world through your miracles!

 22nd SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 5. Holy Wonderworkers and Unmercenaries Cosmas and Damian of Mesopotamia, and their mother, St. Theodota. Hieromartyrs John the Bishop and Jacob (James) the Presbyter, of Persia (ca. 345). Martyrs Cyrenia and Juliana in Cilicia (4th c.). Martyr Hermenegild the Goth of Spain (586). Martyrs Cæsarius, Dacius, Sabbas, Sabinian, Agrippa, Adrian, and Thomas, at Damascus (7th c.). Monk Martyrs Jacob, Jacob the Deacon, and Dionysius, of Prodromou (Mt. Athos—1520).

 Galatians 6:11-18 (Epistle)

See with what large letters I have written to you with my own hand! As many as desire to make a good showing in the flesh, these would compel you to be circumcised, only that they may not suffer persecution for the cross of Christ. For not even those who are circumcised keep the law, but they desire to have you circumcised that they may boast in your flesh. But God forbid that I should boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world. For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, but a new creation. And as many as walk according to this rule, peace and mercy be upon them, and upon the Israel of God. From now on let no one trouble me, for I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus. Brethren, the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Amen.

Luke 8:26-39 (Gospel)

Then they sailed to the country of the Gadarenes, which is opposite Galilee.And when He stepped out on the land, there met Him a certain man from the city who had demons for a long time. And he wore no clothes, nor did he live in a house but in the tombs.When he saw Jesus, he cried out, fell down before Him, and with a loud voice said, “What have I to do with You, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I beg You, do not torment me!”For He had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man. For it had often seized him, and he was kept under guard, bound with chains and shackles; and he broke the bonds and was driven by the demon into the wilderness.Jesus asked him, saying, “What is your name?” And he said, “Legion,” because many demons had entered him.And they begged Him that He would not command them to go out into the abyss.Now a herd of many swine was feeding there on the mountain. So they begged Him that He would permit them to enter them. And He permitted them.Then the demons went out of the man and entered the swine, and the herd ran violently down the steep place into the lake and drowned.When those who fed them saw what had happened, they fled and told it in the city and in the country.Then they went out to see what had happened, and came to Jesus, and found the man from whom the demons had departed, sitting at the feet of Jesus, clothed and in his right mind. And they were afraid.They also who had seen it told them by what means he who had been demon-possessed was healed.Then the whole multitude of the surrounding region of the Gadarenes asked Him to depart from them, for they were seized with great fear. And He got into the boat and returned.Now the man from whom the demons had departed begged Him that he might be with Him. But Jesus sent him away, saying,Return to your own house, and tell what great things God has done for you. And he went his way and proclaimed throughout the whole city what great things Jesus had done for him.

Announcements:

TODAY Sunday Church school Continues for all ages. Children are released at the end of the Divine Liturgy.

TODAY a Panahikda (Service for the reposed) will follow Liturgy with a short Adult Sunday School lesson after.

Today, Sunday School Teachers Meeting – (after Classes)

Parish Council Meeting - Wednesday Nov.11th, 5:30pm Vespers Meeting follows

Parish Financial Report: August - income: $7723 Expenses: 7177 Sept. - Income: $5140 Expenses: $9935 We pray that you continue to fulfill your pledge and prepare for another year of God’s blessing. God loves a cheerful giver! (We are looking for donations toward new signs for the Parish…)

Sts. Peter and Paul Annual Meeting, Sunday November 15th

Youth and Young Adult Retreat, Holy Assumption of St. Mary Orthodox Church, Southside, Pittsburgh. This is a service retreat , we will be helping with the annual Thanksgiving dinner preparation for needy families in the city. Vladyka Melchesidek will be joining us. Divine Liturgy will be served for the Feast Day at 9am with a brunch to follow. After serving we will visit the market district. Depart 7am- Return 7pm Bring cash for late lunch.

Thursday, Decemeber 17th, St. Elizabeth the New Martyr Monastery from Belarus will be visiting our parish. Divine Liturgy 9:30am. (Luncheon to follow)

Events Upcoming Outside the Parish:

Nov. 7th - Archdiocesan Assembly – Philipsburg, PA

Dec. 7 - Decorating Party at the Archbishop's Residence, 3-5PM, all youth and families are welcome.

Dec. 27-30 - Winter Retreat, Antiochian Village, Ligonier, PA, college students. (See Fr. Daniel for more info.)

Dec. 31 - Retreat at The Orthodox Monastery of the Transfiguration, Ellwood City, PA, - college students.

Jan. 2, 2015 - Party with the Archbishop, Archdiocesan Center, 5-9PM, High school seniors and college students.

Jan. 25, 2015 - Winter Ice Skating Party, PPG Ice Rink, Downtown, Pittsburgh, 3-5PM – Families invited

Feb. 15, 2015 - Youth/Family Bowling Party, Mt. Lebanon Lanes, 3-5PM.

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Rev. Daniel Mathewson - Rector

Nov. 1st , 2015         

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801

 25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 

 Christ is in Our Midst!  He is and Always shall Be!

 

Unmercenaries Cosmos and Damian

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior. Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel. 

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

 

Fr. Nicholas, Timothy Alberti, Vernon  and Mary Baldwin, Mellissa Godfrey Michael Gresh, Mary-Louise Gall, Tanya Ferra, Lisa, Valentina, Evelyn, Paul, George, Theodore, Fr. George, Penni, James, … Inquirers and Catechumens David Angelini, Becky Pineo, Eli, Sawyer…. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko,… military servers…Greg Hargett…. The Newly Married …Tristan and Mary Gall … Travelers…, Departed… Karen Sanford, John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White, Nikolai Emelianow, Mark

 Today’s Hymns

 Tone 5            Troparion       (Resurrection)

Let us, the faithful, praise and worship the Word,

co-eternal with the Father and the Spirit,

born for our salvation from the Virgin;

for He willed to be lifted up on the Cross in the flesh,

to endure death,

and to raise the dead//

by His glorious Resurrection.

 Troparion — Tone 4

First-enthroned of the apostles, / teachers of the universe: / Entreat the Master of all / to grant peace to the world, / and to our souls great mercy!

 Kontakion — Tone 2

O Lord, You have taken up to eternal rest / and to the enjoyment of Your blessings / the two divinely-inspired preachers, the leaders of the Apostles, / for You have accepted their labors and deaths as a sweet-smelling sacrifice, / for You alone know what lies in the hearts of men.

 

Tone 8            Troparion      (Saints Cosmas and Damian)

O holy Unmercenaries and Wonderworkers,

O Cosmas and Damian, heal our infirmities.//

Freely ye have received; freely  ye give unto us.

 

Tone 5            Kontakion      (Resurrection)

Thou didst descend into hell, O my Savior,

shattering its gates as Almighty,

resurrecting the dead as Creator,

and destroying the sting of death.

Thou hast delivered Adam from the curse, O Lover of man,//

and we cry to Thee: O Lord, save us!

 

Tone 2            Kontakion     (Saints Cosmas and Damian)

Having received the grace of healing,

ye grant healing to those in need.

Glorious wonder-workers and healers, Cosmas and Damian,

visit us and put down the insolence of our enemies,//

and bring healing to the world through your miracles!

 22nd SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 5. Holy Wonderworkers and Unmercenaries Cosmas and Damian of Mesopotamia, and their mother, St. Theodota. Hieromartyrs John the Bishop and Jacob (James) the Presbyter, of Persia (ca. 345). Martyrs Cyrenia and Juliana in Cilicia (4th c.). Martyr Hermenegild the Goth of Spain (586). Martyrs Cæsarius, Dacius, Sabbas, Sabinian, Agrippa, Adrian, and Thomas, at Damascus (7th c.). Monk Martyrs Jacob, Jacob the Deacon, and Dionysius, of Prodromou (Mt. Athos—1520).

 Galatians 6:11-18 (Epistle)

See with what large letters I have written to you with my own hand! As many as desire to make a good showing in the flesh, these would compel you to be circumcised, only that they may not suffer persecution for the cross of Christ. For not even those who are circumcised keep the law, but they desire to have you circumcised that they may boast in your flesh. But God forbid that I should boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world. For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, but a new creation. And as many as walk according to this rule, peace and mercy be upon them, and upon the Israel of God. From now on let no one trouble me, for I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus. Brethren, the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Amen.

Luke 8:26-39 (Gospel)

Then they sailed to the country of the Gadarenes, which is opposite Galilee.And when He stepped out on the land, there met Him a certain man from the city who had demons for a long time. And he wore no clothes, nor did he live in a house but in the tombs.When he saw Jesus, he cried out, fell down before Him, and with a loud voice said, “What have I to do with You, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I beg You, do not torment me!”For He had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man. For it had often seized him, and he was kept under guard, bound with chains and shackles; and he broke the bonds and was driven by the demon into the wilderness.Jesus asked him, saying, “What is your name?” And he said, “Legion,” because many demons had entered him.And they begged Him that He would not command them to go out into the abyss.Now a herd of many swine was feeding there on the mountain. So they begged Him that He would permit them to enter them. And He permitted them.Then the demons went out of the man and entered the swine, and the herd ran violently down the steep place into the lake and drowned.When those who fed them saw what had happened, they fled and told it in the city and in the country.Then they went out to see what had happened, and came to Jesus, and found the man from whom the demons had departed, sitting at the feet of Jesus, clothed and in his right mind. And they were afraid.They also who had seen it told them by what means he who had been demon-possessed was healed.Then the whole multitude of the surrounding region of the Gadarenes asked Him to depart from them, for they were seized with great fear. And He got into the boat and returned.Now the man from whom the demons had departed begged Him that he might be with Him. But Jesus sent him away, saying,Return to your own house, and tell what great things God has done for you. And he went his way and proclaimed throughout the whole city what great things Jesus had done for him.

Announcements:

TODAY Sunday Church school Continues for all ages. Children are released at the end of the Divine Liturgy.

TODAY a Panahikda (Service for the reposed) will follow Liturgy with a short Adult Sunday School lesson after.

Today, Sunday School Teachers Meeting – (after Classes)

Parish Council Meeting - Wednesday Nov.11th, 5:30pm Vespers Meeting follows

Parish Financial Report: August - income: $7723 Expenses: 7177 Sept. - Income: $5140 Expenses: $9935 We pray that you continue to fulfill your pledge and prepare for another year of God’s blessing. God loves a cheerful giver! (We are looking for donations toward new signs for the Parish…)

Sts. Peter and Paul Annual Meeting, Sunday November 15th

Youth and Young Adult Retreat, Holy Assumption of St. Mary Orthodox Church, Southside, Pittsburgh. This is a service retreat , we will be helping with the annual Thanksgiving dinner preparation for needy families in the city. Vladyka Melchesidek will be joining us. Divine Liturgy will be served for the Feast Day at 9am with a brunch to follow. After serving we will visit the market district. Depart 7am- Return 7pm Bring cash for late lunch.

Thursday, Decemeber 17th, St. Elizabeth the New Martyr Monastery from Belarus will be visiting our parish. Divine Liturgy 9:30am. (Luncheon to follow)

Events Upcoming Outside the Parish:

Nov. 7th - Archdiocesan Assembly – Philipsburg, PA

Dec. 7 - Decorating Party at the Archbishop's Residence, 3-5PM, all youth and families are welcome.

Dec. 27-30 - Winter Retreat, Antiochian Village, Ligonier, PA, college students. (See Fr. Daniel for more info.)

Dec. 31 - Retreat at The Orthodox Monastery of the Transfiguration, Ellwood City, PA, - college students.

Jan. 2, 2015 - Party with the Archbishop, Archdiocesan Center, 5-9PM, High school seniors and college students.

Jan. 25, 2015 - Winter Ice Skating Party, PPG Ice Rink, Downtown, Pittsburgh, 3-5PM – Families invited

Feb. 15, 2015 - Youth/Family Bowling Party, Mt. Lebanon Lanes, 3-5PM.

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 Rev. Daniel Mathewson - Rector

October 18th ,  2015        

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801

 25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

Christ is in Our Midst! He is and Always shall Be!

 Holy Apostle and Evangelist Luke

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

 Jen Lultschik, Fr. Nicholas, Margaret Suscheck, Timothy Alberti, Vernon  and Mary Baldwin,, Michael Gresh, Mary-Louise Gall, Tanya Ferra, Valentina, Evelyn, Paul, George, Theodore, Fr. George, Penni, James, … Inquirers and Catechumens David Angelini, Becky Pineo, Eli, Sawyer…. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko,… military servers…Greg Hargett…. The Newly Married …Tristan and Mary Gall … Travelers…, Departed… Karen Sanford, John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White, Nikolai Emelianow, Mark

 

               Tone 3        Troparion      (Resurrection)

Let the heavens rejoice!

Let the earth be glad!

For the Lord has shown strength with His arm.

He has trampled down death by death.

He has become the firstborn of the dead.

He has delivered us from the depths of hell,

and has granted to the world//

great mercy.

            Troparion — Tone 5 (St . Luke)

Let us praise with sacred songs the holy Apostle Luke, / the recorder of the joyous Gospel of Christ / and the scribe of the Acts of the Apostles, / for his writings are a testimony of the Church of Christ: / He is the physician of human weaknesses and infirmities. / He heals the wounds of our souls, / and constantly intercedes for our salvation!

             Tone 3          Kontakion     (Resurrection)

On this day Thou didst rise from the tomb, O Merciful One,

leading us from the gates of death.

On this day Adam exults as Eve rejoices;

with the Prophets and Patriarchs//

they unceasingly praise the divine majesty of Thy power.

 

             Tone 2          Kontakion     (Apostle Luke)

Let us praise the godly Luke;

he is the true preacher of piety,

the orator of ineffable mysteries

and the star of the Church,

for the Word, Who alone knows the hearts of men,//

chose him, with the wise Paul, to be a teacher of the Gentiles!

 

20th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 3. Holy Apostle and Evangelist Luke (1st c.). Martyr Marinus the Elder at Anazarbus (4th c.). Ven. Julian the Hermit, of Mesopotamia (4th c.).

 

Galatians 1:11-19 (Epistle)

But I make known to you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached by me is not according to man. For I neither received it from man, nor was I taught it, but it came through the revelation of Jesus Christ. For you have heard of my former conduct in Judaism, how I persecuted the church of God beyond measure and tried to destroy it. And I advanced in Judaism beyond many of my contemporaries in my own nation, being more exceedingly zealous for the traditions of my fathers. But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother’s womb and called me through His grace, to reveal His Son in me, that I might preach Him among the Gentiles, I did not immediately confer with flesh and blood, nor did I go up to Jerusalem to those who were apostles before me; but I went to Arabia, and returned again to Damascus. Then after three years I went up to Jerusalem to see Peter, and remained with him fifteen days. But I saw none of the other apostles except James, the Lord’s brother.

Colossians 4:5-9, 14, 18 (Epistle, St. Luke)

Walk in wisdom toward those who are outside, redeeming the time. Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you ought to answer each one. Tychicus, a beloved brother, faithful minister, and fellow servant in the Lord, will tell you all the news about me. I am sending him to you for this very purpose, that he may know your circumstances and comfort your hearts, with Onesimus, a faithful and beloved brother, who is one of you. They will make known to you all things which are happening here. Luke the beloved physician and Demas greet you. This salutation by my own hand – Paul. Remember my chains. Grace be with you. Amen.

Luke 8:5-15 (Gospel)

A sower went out to sow his seed. And as he sowed, some fell by the wayside; and it was trampled down, and the birds of the air devoured it. Some fell on rock; and as soon as it sprang up, it withered away because it lacked moisture. And some fell among thorns, and the thorns sprang up with it and choked it. But others fell on good ground, sprang up, and yielded a crop a hundredfold. When He had said these things He cried, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear!” Then His disciples asked Him, saying, “What does this parable mean?” And He said, “To you it has been given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God, but to the rest it is given in parables, that ‘Seeing they may not see, And hearing they may not understand.’ Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God. Those by the wayside are the ones who hear; then the devil comes and takes away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved. But the ones on the rock are those who, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, who believe for a while and in time of temptation fall away. Now the ones that fell among thorns are those who, when they have heard, go out and are choked with cares, riches, and pleasures of life, and bring no fruit to maturity. But the ones that fell on the good ground are those who, having heard the word with a noble and good heart, keep it and bear fruit with patience.

Luke 10:16-21 (Gospel, St. Luke)

He who hears you hears Me, he who rejects you rejects Me, and he who rejects Me rejects Him who sent Me. Then the seventy returned with joy, saying, “Lord, even the demons are subject to us in Your name.” And He said to them, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you. Nevertheless do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rather rejoice because your names are written in heaven. In that hour Jesus rejoiced in the Spirit and said, “I thank You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that You have hidden these things from the wise and prudent and revealed them to babes. Even so, Father, for so it seemed good in Your sight.

Announcements:

TODAY Sunday Church school Continues for all ages.

o This week Classes will share their learning with a Joint class.

Next Parish Council Meeting - Wednesday Nov.11th, 5:30pm Vespers Meeting follows

Parish Financial Report: August - income: $7723 Expenses: 7177 Sept. - Income: $5140 Expenses: $9935 We pray that you continue to fulfill your pledge and prepare for another year of God’s blessing. God loves a cheerful giver!

HARVEST FEST THIS SATURDAY OCTOBER 24TH 11-3 PM

Relax and enjoy a beautiful autumn day in the country with fellowship, food and refreshment! Featuring local accordionist : Kirk Hazma Please invite a friend Harvest Fest Final Prep After Coffee hour today we need some men to help move tables and set up for Saturday. See Karen or Marge for details. We also need volunteers to help on the 24th with waiting tables, bussing tables, clean up and tear down. Make it a day of service to your parish, Liturgy begins at 8am and we end the day with vespers at 5pm.

Halushki Making- Thurs. Oct. 23rd – 9am Sts.

Peter and Paul Annual Meeting Sunday November 15th

Events Upcoming Outside the Parish:

Nov. 7th - Archdiocesan Assembly – Philipsburg, PA

Nov. 22 - Teen Retreat, Holy Assumption of St. Mary Orthodox Church, Southside, Pgh. Leave 7am- Return 7pm

Dec. 7 - Decorating Party at the Archbishop's Residence, 3-5PM, all youth and families are welcome.

Dec. 27-30 - Winter Retreat, Antiochian Village, Ligonier, PA, college students. (See Fr. Daniel for more info.)

Dec. 31 - Retreat at The Orthodox Monastery of the Transfiguration, Ellwood City, PA, - college students.

Jan. 2, 2015 - Party with the Archbishop, Archdiocesan Center, 5-9PM, High school seniors and college students.

Jan. 25, 2015 - Winter Ice Skating Party, PPG Ice Rink, Downtown, Pittsburgh, 3-5PM – Families invited

Feb. 15, 2015 - Youth/Family Bowling Party, Mt. Lebanon Lanes, 3-5PM.

 

 

Human Tradition in a Modern World                    by:   Fr. Stephen Freeman

            Strange women lying in ponds distributing swords is no basis for a system of government. Supreme executive power derives from a mandate from the masses, not from some farcical aquatic ceremony.  – Monty Python and the Holy Grail

            The comic genius of Monty Python often shows it face when interjecting the present into the past. The charming Arthurian legend of the transmission of Excalibur from the Lady of the Lake is demolished with the prosaic treatment of modern rationalism. It is easy to imagine what they might do in the midst of the medieval pomp of the Queen’s Address to Parliament. Of course, the Queen’s address has itself become farcical in that she reads a policy statement written by whatever party is in power. Thus the Labor party can make her sound like a raging Leftist revolutionary. It is Monty Python in reality.

But the point raised by the quote is, strangely, quite germane. Where does executive power come from? Is there nothing higher than the “mandate of the masses?” It is a question that sheds much light on the nature of our modern world and the assumptions by which we live. I am part of a hierarchical Church. The “mandate of the masses” is ritualized in a ceremonial cry of “Axios” [“He is worthy”], sung at an ordination. But executive power itself is vested in the hierarchy who serve the Tradition. In point of fact, the Tradition has executive power, and the Tradition is from God.

            This contrast between the modern concept of governing and the traditional concept represents a deep division in the understanding of human life. With the rise of modernity, in the 17th and 18th centuries, the desire to “rationalize” all authority came to the forefront. “Reason” replaced tradition and was expected to yield the fruit of continual improvement. Reason allowed for standardization. Standardization allowed for greater central control. Life was transformed into an engine of prosperity and efficiency. Tradition became an obstacle to be removed.

Traditional societies are extremely messy. They do things in a manner that evolved for a great variety of reasons. An “inch,” a “foot” and a “yard” varied over a single Kingdom. A “foot” was, literally, more or less the length of a man’s foot. A traditional society was quite comfortable with measurements that were “more or less.” Efficiency and accuracy were not paramount. But just as measurements varied even within a single country, so institutions varied. Local courts and customs, even local laws might vary. The effect was a deep decentralization of life. To live in a village was quite distinctly to live in a particular village and not in a village in general. Place mattered. People mattered. History mattered.

            Obviously such complete decentralization made efficiencies impossible. The great exemplar of modernity in the 18th century was the state of Prussia (in modern Germany). It was the first state to successfully make centralization and standardization a dominant feature in its life. It became the ideal of every monarch. Even in Russia, the Tsar began to envy the Germans. Various Tsars introduced rationalizations into the highly traditional Russian life. To this day, the strict regime within the Church of “awards,” consisting in various hats, crosses and liturgical items, reflects the Tsar’s rationalizing of Church affairs. Each award or rank was the equivalent of a civil servant’s rank. Everyone knew where they stood. The goal, of course, wasn’t to make the Church rational, but to make more of society serve the goal of efficiency and productivity. And those goals were directed towards war. Historically, the Tsars imported Germans to help with this project. It is how you find Russians with names like “Schmemann” and “Meyendorff.”

            Of course, rationality brings tremendous benefits. Imagine how efficient it would be if the size and shape of people could be standardized. Clothes would not need to come in various sizes. The price of clothing would drop and no one would need be naked. One size fits all! But actual human beings are not “rational” in such a manner. They differ widely and dramatically; we treasure that difference. The rationality of the Prussian state produced an extremely powerful war machine. It eventually made possible the military success of Germany and Hitler. When Germany was developing a ruthlessly efficient army in preparation for the First World War, Generals in France were still insisting that their soldiers wear their traditional bright red pants. In 1913, the French Minister of War, Eugene Etienne, responding to the suggestion that the red pants should go, replied, “Abolish red trousers?! Never! Red trousers are France!”

            The rationality of the modern project did not stop with armies. It gradually came into almost every area of life, including the Churches. One manifestation of this standardization was the production of catechisms. The Reformers wrote small tracts with detailed organization of doctrine, capable of memorization and rapid reproduction. They were extremely effective and efficient tools for the instruction of the population. The Catholic Church responded with its first Catechism after the Council of Trent. The Orthodox eventually developed one of their own as well. (I personally feel that the Catechisms represent a low-point in the “Western Captivity” of Orthodoxy).

            These developments might seem to be innocuous or even as real improvements. But they represent a shift in the center of gravity for human life. Traditional ways of thinking, living and interacting are organic rather than purely rational. Just as the standardization of human size and shape would actually diminish humanity and human experience, so the rationalization of every area of life does the same. A catechism tends to state succinctly things that should be stated at great length, or not even stated at all. They produce a form of knowledge, but not the form that is called Tradition. We do not learn Tradition; we are formed in Tradition. In the West, generations of children were drilled in their catechisms. Completion of the catechism was then greeted with the sacrament of Confirmation. The result was a rational Christian. The unintended result was a dull, moralistic, overly rational Church (sermons became dry treatises that often lasted two hours). A predictable reaction occurred. Deeply emotional revivals such as the First and Second Great Awakenings in America, the Methodist movement, and various Pietist groups on the Continent, all sought a return to something that was actually felt and not simply thought. There is no catechism that could capture or communicate the fervor of a Methodist brush arbor revival. Of course, those emotional reactions (precursors of modern Evangelicalism) were often accompanied with a decline in doctrinal instruction. Western Christianity was fractured.

            Traditional forms of living are simply human forms of living. We are capable of assimilating highly rationalized life-styles and customs. But we love what is truly human. Who hasn’t quietly rejoiced when a bureaucrat at a counter bends a rule for their convenience and simply makes something work? Or who hasn’t cursed when greeted by a computer-generated list of choices and responses in a service call and simply begged for a human being at the other end of the line? These are components of our lives that indicate that, though we are capable of the rational, we transcend it and prefer to live above it.

            We are several hundred years into the Modern Project. Much that was once traditional has been erased and replaced by rationalized structures. The pendulum has swung many times, with rationalization and reaction producing wave after wave of change and disruption. One result of this process is the disruption of childhood and adolescence. Human beings actually learn by tradition. There is no other way. Rationalized traditions have the inherent weakness of theory. On paper, this new math ought to be a great improvement. Of course, only a generation of children can actually prove whether it is so. And, modernity being what it is, another change will have been set in place before that generation has passed. Our rationalizations fail repeatedly, only to be corrected by new rationalizations and Johnny still can’t read.

            The Church is similar. Almost no modern Christian worships in a manner similar to his grandparents (unless he is Orthodox). Does your grandmother actually like rock ‘n roll in Church? Years back, as an Anglican priest, I favored a High Church version of the Mass. We chanted and had bells, etc. One Sunday, a young Catholic couple visited, looking to explore a bit. After the service they told me that they preferred a more “traditional” service. I was dismayed, wondering what more I could do. When I questioned them more closely, they told me that they preferred a service with guitars. Post-Vatican II. Guitars are Tradition.

            The presence and life of Tradition are essential to humanity. We are an adaptable species, meaning we can tolerate a tremendous amount of nonsense. But there is a reason why there is a Christianity that has remained largely unchanged, or, at most, has evolved rather than having been reformed. It is simply the continuation of a very human way of believing. I contend that this is God’s will. Human beings live best and become more fully what they are meant to be when they are actually allowed to be human. The march of modernity continues apace. It is increasingly sweeping traditions aside. Even restrooms are no longer safe from some “rational” regulation.

God deliver us from the rationalizers.

 

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Rev. Daniel Mathewson - Rector

October 11th ,  2015        

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801

 25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 Christ is in Our Midst! He is and Always shall Be!

 

Apostle Philip of the 70 - One of the 7 deacons

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

 

Jen Lultschik, Fr. Nicholas, Margaret Suscheck, Timothy Alberti, Vernon Baldwin,, Michael Gresh, Mary-Louise Gall, Tanya Ferra, Evelyn, Paul, George, Theodore, Fr. George… Inquirers and Catechumens  David Angelini, Becky Pineo, Eli, Sawyer…. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko,… military servers…Greg Hargett…. The Newly Married …Tristan and Mary Gall … Travelers…, Ristveys..Departed… Karen Sanford, John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White, Nikolai Emelianow, Mark

Tone 2            Troparion      (Resurrection)

 

When You descended to death, O Life Immortal,

You destroyed hell with the splendor of Your Godhead.

And when from the depths You raised the dead,

all the powers of heaven cried out://

“O Giver of life, Christ our God, glory to You!”

 

Tone 8            Troparion      (Fathers)

 

You are most glorious, O Christ our God!

You have established the Holy Fathers as lights on the earth.

Through them You have guided us to the true Faith.//

O greatly compassionate One, glory to You!

 

Tone 2            Kontakion     (Resurrection)

 

Hell became afraid, O almighty Savior,

seeing the miracle of Your Resurrection from the tomb!

The dead arose!  Creation, with Adam, beheld this and rejoiced with

You,//

and the world, my Savior, praises You forever.

 

Tone 6            Kontakion     (Fathers)

 

The Son who shone forth from the Father

was ineffably born, two-fold in nature, of a woman.

Having beheld Him, we do not deny the image of His form,

but depict it piously and revere it faithfully.

Thus, keeping the True Faith,//

the Church venerates the icon of Christ Incarnate.

 19th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 2. Fathers of the 7th Ecumenical Council. Holy Apostle Philip of the Seventy, one of the Seven Deacons (1st c.). St. Theophanes the Confessor and Hymnographer, Bishop of Nicæa (ca. 850). Ven. Theophanes, Faster, of the Kiev Caves (Near Caves—12th c.). Ven. Leo of Optina (1841). Synaxis of the Optina elders. Martyrs Zenaïs (Zinaída) and Philonilla, of Tarsus in Cilicia (1st c.).

Hebrews 13:7-16 (Epistle, Fathers)

Remember those who rule over you, who have spoken the word of God to you, whose faith follow, considering the outcome of their conduct. Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. Do not be carried about with various and strange doctrines. For it is good that the heart be established by grace, not with foods which have not profited those who have been occupied with them. We have an altar from which those who serve the tabernacle have no right to eat. For the bodies of those animals, whose blood is brought into the sanctuary by the high priest for sin, are burned outside the camp. Therefore Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people with His own blood, suffered outside the gate.

Therefore let us go forth to Him, outside the camp, bearing His reproach. For here we have no continuing city, but we seek the one to come. Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name. But do not forget to do good and to share, for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.

2 Corinthians 11:31-12:9 (Epistle)

The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who is blessed forever, knows that I am not lying. In Damascus the governor, under Aretas the king, was guarding the city of the Damascenes with a garrison, desiring to arrest me; but I was let down in a basket through a window in the wall, and escaped from his hands. It is doubtless not profitable for me to boast. I will come to visions and revelations of the Lord: I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago – whether in the body I do not know, or whether out of the body I do not know, God knows – such a one was caught up to the third heaven. And I know such a man – whether in the body or out of the body I do not know, God knows – how he was caught up into Paradise and heard inexpressible words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter. Of such a one I will boast; yet of myself I will not boast, except in my infirmities. For though I might desire to boast, I will not be a fool; for I will speak the truth. But I refrain, lest anyone should think of me above what he sees me to be or hears from me. And lest I should be exalted above measure by the abundance of the revelations, a thorn in the flesh was given to me, a messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I be exalted above measure. Concerning this thing I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might depart from me. And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

John 17:1-13 (Gospel, Fathers)

Jesus spoke these words, lifted up His eyes to heaven, and said: “Father, the hour has come. Glorify Your Son, that Your Son also may glorify You,as You have given Him authority over all flesh, that He should give eternal life to as many as You have given Him.And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.I have glorified You on the earth. I have finished the work which You have given Me to do.And now, O Father, glorify Me together with Yourself, with the glory which I had with You before the world was.I have manifested Your name to the men whom You have given Me out of the world. They were Yours, You gave them to Me, and they have kept Your word.Now they have known that all things which You have given Me are from You.For I have given to them the words which You have given Me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came forth from You; and they have believed that You sent Me.I pray for them. I do not pray for the world but for those whom You have given Me, for they are Yours.And all Mine are Yours, and Yours are Mine, and I am glorified in them.Now I am no longer in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to You. Holy Father, keep through Your name those whom You have given Me, that they may be one as We are.While I was with them in the world, I kept them in Your name. Those whom You gave Me I have kept; and none of them is lost except the son of perdition, that the Scripture might be fulfilled.But now I come to You, and these things I speak in the world, that they may have My joy fulfilled in themselves.

Luke 7:11-16 (Gospel)

Now it happened, the day after, that He went into a city called Nain; and many of His disciples went with Him, and a large crowd. And when He came near the gate of the city, behold, a dead man was being carried out, the only son of his mother; and she was a widow. And a large crowd from the city was with her.When the Lord saw her, He had compassion on her and said to her, “Do not weep.”Then He came and touched the open coffin, and those who carried him stood still. And He said, “Young man, I say to you, arise.”So he who was dead sat up and began to speak. And He presented him to his mother.

Then fear came upon all, and they glorified God, saying, “A great prophet has risen up among us”; and, “God has visited His people.”

 

 

Through the Prayers of Our Holy Fathers

Fr. Stephen Freeman

It is a phrase that is heard frequently in Orthodox services: “Through the prayers of our holy fathers, have mercy on us and save us!” The meaning of that phrase is enlarged and enlightened in the writings of the Elder Sophrony. The following excerpt is from his book, St. Silouan the Athonite.

         Prayer for the whole world, for all Adam, in many instances distracts the monk from putting himself at the service of individuals. One may question whether this withdrawing from individual service means refusal of the concrete for the sake of the abstract? Not at all, for the whole Adam is not an abstraction but the most concrete fullness of the human being.

         The ontological unity of humanity is such that every separate individual overcoming evil in himself inflicts such a defeat on cosmic evil that its consequences have a beneficial effect on the destinies of the whole world. On the other hand, the nature of cosmic evil is such that, vanquished in certain humanhypostases [persons] it suffers a defeat in the significance and extent of which are quite disproportionate to the number of individuals concerned. (There aren’t many.)

          A single saint is an extraordinarily precious phenomenon for all mankind. By the mere fact of their existence – unknown, maybe, to the world but known to God – the saints draw down on the world, on all humanity, a great benediction from God.

The Staretz [St. Silouan] writes:

‘Because of these people, I believe the Lord preserves the world, for they are precious in His sight, and God always listens to His humble servants and we are all of us all right because of their prayers.’ ‘Prayer keeps the world alive and when prayer fails, the world will perish…”Nowadays,” perhaps you will say, “there are no more monks like that to pray for the whole world.”

But I tell you that when there are no more men of prayer on earth, the world will come to an end and great disasters will befall. They have already started.’ “Many think that the saints are far from us. But they are far from those who distance themselves from them, and very close to those keep the commandments of Christ and have the grace of the Holy Spirit. In the heavens, all things are moved by the Holy Spirit.  

But the Holy Spirit is on earth too. He lives in our Church. He lives in the Mysteries. He is in the Holy Scriptures. He is in the souls of the faithful. The Holy Spirit unites all things, and therefore the saints are close to us. And when we pray to them, then the Holy Spirit hears our prayers, and our souls feel that they are praying for us.”

The saints live by the love of Christ. This love is Divine strength, which created, and now upholds, the world, and this is why their prayer is so pregnant with meaning. St. Barsanuphius, for instance, records that in his time the prayers of three men preserved mankind from catastrophe. Thanks to these saints – whom the world does not know of – the course of historical, even of cosmic events, is changed. So then, every saint is a phenomenon of cosmic character, whose significance passes beyond the bounds of earthly history into the sphere of eternity. The saints are the salt of the earth, its raison d’etre. They are the fruit that preserve the earth. But when the earth ceases to produce saints, the strength that safeguards it from catastrophe will fail.

Tonight, before you go to bed, pray: “O Lord, through the prayers of our holy fathers, have mercy on us and save us!” And be grateful.

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 Rev. Daniel Mathewson - Rector

(Welcome to Fr. Dcn. Theodosius)

October 4th ,  2015        

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801

 25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

Christ is in Our Midst! He is and Always shall Be!

 

Hiero-Martyr Hierotheus

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

Fr. Nicholas, Margaret Suscheck, Timothy Alberti, Vernon Baldwin,, Michael Gresh, Mary-Louise Gall, Tanya Ferra, Evelyn, Paul, George, Theodore…  The Newly illumined Jeremiah Stump, William Shontz, Wesly Shontz… Inquirers and Catechumens  David Angelini, Becky Pineo…. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko,… military servers…Greg Hargett…. The Newly Married …Tristan and Mary Gall … Travelers…Fr.Daniel and Family, and the Filipos Family..Departed… Karen Sanford, John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White, Nikolai Emelianow, Mark

 

 Tone 1            Troparion      (Resurrection)

 

When the stone had been sealed by the Jews,

while the soldiers were guarding Your most pure ^body,

You rose on the third day, O Savior, granting life to the world.

The powers of heaven therefore cried to You, O Giver of Life:

“Glory to Your Resurrection, O Christ!

Glory to Your ^Kingdom!//

Glory to Your dispensation, O Lover of mankind!”

 

Tone 1            Troparion      (for Hieromartyr Hierotheus)*

 

We the faithful all praise Hierótheus, the disciple of Paul,

Hierarch of ^Athens,

the world’s teacher and a preacher of the Faith,

who revealed to us Christ’s Mysteries

and poured forth streams of godly ^doctrine.//

His life was well-pleasing to God, Who is greatly merciful.

 

            Tone 1            Kontakion     (Resurrection)

 

As God, You rose from the tomb in glory,

raising the world with Yourself.

Human nature praises You as God, for death has vanished.

Adam exults, O Master!

Eve rejoices, for she is freed from bondage and cries to You://

“You are the Giver of Resurrection to all, O Christ!”

 

Tone 8            Kontakion     (for Hieromartyr Hierotheus)*

 

Hierarch of Athens, we praise you for you have instructed us in

awesome and ineffable things,

and you were revealed to be a divinely-inspired writer of hymns.

Pray that we be delivered from every kind of sin, so that we may

cry to you://

“Rejoice, divinely-wise Father Hierotheus!”

 18th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 1. Hieromartyr Hierotheus, Bishop of Athens (1st c.). Uncovering of the Relics of St. Gurias, First Archbishop of Kazan, and St. Varsonúphy (Barsanuphius), Bishop of Tver’ (1595). Synaxis of the Hierarchs of Kazan’ (1976). Rt. Blv. Prince Vladimir Yaroslavich, Prince of Novgorod (1052). Ven. Helladius and Onesimus of the Kiev Caves (Near Caves—12th-13th c.). Ven. Ammon, Recluse, of the Kiev Caves (Far Caves—13th c.). Martyrs Gaius, Faustus, Eusebius, and Chæremon, of Alexandria (3rd c.). Martyr Peter of Capetolis (3rd-4th c.). Martyrs Domnina and her daughters Berenice and Prosdoce of Syria (305-306). Ven. Ammon (ca. 350) and Paul the Simple (4th c.), of Egypt. Martyr Adauctus and his daughter, St. Callisthene, of Ephesus (4th c.). St. Stephen Stiljianovich of Serbia (1515).

 Corinthians 9:6-11 (Epistle)

But this I say: He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work. As it is written: “He has dispersed abroad, He has given to the poor; His righteousness endures forever.”

Now may He who supplies seed to the sower, and bread for food, supply and multiply the seed you have sown and increase the fruits of your righteousness, while you are enriched in everything for all liberality, which causes thanksgiving through us to God.

 Luke 6:31-36 (Gospel)

And just as you want men to do to you, you also do to them likewise. But if you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners do the same. And if you lend to those from whom you hope to receive back, what credit is that to you? For even sinners lend to sinners to receive as much back. But love your enemies, do good, and lend, hoping for nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High. For He is kind to the unthankful and evil. Therefore be merciful, just as your Father also is merciful.

Announcements:

TODAY Sunday Church school Continues for all ages.

o Mat. Gail’s class (4-6th) will join Mrs. Natalie’s class

o Fr. Dcn. Theodosius will lead the Adult Class today

Orthodox Christian 6th hour Prayer Service With Meditation Every Friday 12noon @ The Ghering Health and Wellness Center 2nd Floor Edinboro University

- Parish Council Meeting - Wednesday Oct.14th, 5:30pm Vespers Meeting follows

-Archdiocesan Bonfire Sunday October 11th – 4:00 pm Vespers, Archdiocesan Center- Cranberry We will depart at 2pm Fr. Daniel would like all of your youth to attend this event if possible.

HARVEST FEST SATURDAY OCTOBER 24TH 11-3 PM

Harvest Fest Prep Pirohi Making (round 2)- Wed. Oct. 7th and Thurs.8th

– 9am Halupki Making- Mon. October 12th, Tues. 13th, Wed. 14th – 9am Halushki Making-

Thurs. Oct. 23rd – 9am

Upcoming:

Archdiocesan Assembly – Philipsburg PA - Nov. 7th

Archdiocesan Young Youth Retreat – November 14th

Archdiocesan Youth and Young adult Retreat November 21st – Pitt

 

 

Dogs Best Friend                                     by Fr. Stephen Freeman

 I would like to suggest that dogs are perhaps the greatest things humans have ever accomplished. If my understanding is correct, dogs are essentially gray wolves, or directly descended from a wolf species, beginning somewhere between 60,000 to 100,000 years ago. At some point they were domesticated by us and used as aids to hunting. It has even been suggested that the domestication of dogs gave us an edge in our competition with Neanderthals. Human beings have domesticated any number of animals, generally for purposes of food. But dogs are another matter (I’ll ignore what they do in Korea). And it is this process and its result that I mean to laud as among our finest hours.

We long ago ceased to be serious hunters, but we kept our dogs. The breeding and development of dogs for companionship seems to be a fairly recent thing. Dogs have gone from a wolf-like appearance to the myriad of shapes and sizes we now know. But it is the inner reality of this that interests me: the personality of dogs.

            Animals are without sin. Creation, St. Paul says, has been made “subject to futility” on account of our Fall (Romans 8:20), and notes that this was not done “willingly.” Their state is not their fault. God has made Creation subject to death and dissolution for our sake (it directs us towards repentance). But creation itself has no sin – it has not broken its essential relationship with God. The bread that becomes the Body of Christ does not need to first repent of its sins. Repentance belongs to humans alone.


            Another way of saying this is that various animal species always act in accordance with their nature (one of the meanings of sin is to act contrary to our nature). Dogs do dog things. Cats do cat things. Squirrels do squirrel things. Dogs do not gather nuts and climb in trees. When human beings domesticate an animal, they do not give them a new nature. At most, we breed and train in a way to accentuate certain aspects of their nature. The instinct of a dog not to soil its own nest or bed is extended by a human being such that we say a dog is “house-trained.” The whole house becomes its bed.

 

            But, my marveling and praise is over what we generally like in dogs. They are wolves and could be made to behave like wolves and be quite dangerous. In some cases, they are still trained for aggressive behavior. But, on the whole, we have chosen very affable traits for development. Dogs are kind, grateful, loyal – all of the things that we celebrate about them.

When we survey the world and creation, there are many things that stand as shameful signs of human occupation. This is particularly the case where the civilizational collapse that we call modernity has had the upper hand. The charm of an English village is the product of a different age. The mind-numbing banality of an American suburb and its strip malls is the mark of modernity. But then there are dogs.

Dogs seem to be an island that reflects not only their own natural goodness, but human goodness as well.

            Of course, there is a darker side. I am not alone in writing about animals and men. George MacDonald, perhaps one of the most profound theological minds in British history, was deeply opposed to then growing practice of experimentation on animals. CS Lewis shared his convictions and often wrote in opposition to “vivisection.” Lewis also pondered freely the meaning of human relationships with animals and suggested that we perhaps had a calling to raise animals towards a more complete and full personal existence. The talking animals in his children’s stories are not cartoon characters – they are a meditation on what Lewis saw as a uniquely human mission. He is very clear that in Narnia, the “Sons of Adam and Daughters of Eve,” rule over the animals, but in a manner that transcends our present domestication. The animals of Narnia are not pets: they are friends. I have always been taken with Lewis’ thoughts in this direction, and have found them fulfilled most nearly in our relationship with dogs (my wife keeps cats).

            Animal cruelty is revealed as true evil when we think in this manner. When animals are objectified (the opposite of personified), we turn our minds and hearts away from them and subject them to unspeakable treatment. This is itself part of the depersonalization of the world that often marks our modern lives.

            My maternal grandfather was a farmer. In the years that I remember best, his farm was given primarily to the raising of cows. It was a modest farm, with a dog or two and always a bevy of cats who lived by catching mice. But I always remember my grandfather walking slowly among his cows, like a shepherd (or cowherd). Christ Himself exalted the role of shepherd, even noting that a good shepherd “calls his sheep by name” and even “gives his life for the sheep.” David himself served such a role, killing both a lion and a bear in protection of his flock. These are images that go far beyond a mere utilitarian relationship with animals. These animals have names. Interestingly, one of the primary and early uses of dogs was the sharing of this shepherd role.

            It is interesting that Christ Himself offered no better image of His relationship with people than to compare Himself to a shepherd. There is something godlike in a proper relationship with animals.

Several years back I chose to take all of this seriously. My family had once had a dog, but it was the children’s dog, something I tolerated in the house. But during a time of reflection I declared that “I want to be the kind of man who has a dog.” I got a small puppy and began to learn the ways of the wolf. I read books (isn’t everything you need to know in a book?). I googled “house-training” (with every failure). I realized that whatever I did with this animal, the results would be there to praise me or accuse me. I wanted to be a man with a dog. I also wanted to become “the kind of man my dog thinks I am.” (I have not managed that yet).

            It has been an intense experience. He is a companion. After my heart attack I had to develop a routine of long walks. His needs forced me to take care of myself.

Human beings, at our best, are capable of pets. At our worst, we are capable of cock-fights and faceless, nameless exploitation. God has clearly given animals to us for food, but He has not given them to us for abuse.

              It is said that a society can be judged by how it treats its weakest members. I would add to that the treatment of animals. Pets are not necessarily an indulgence in sentiment. They are a movement towards something right and good. We would do well to think often about this and what it means for living rightly in God’s good world.

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Rev. Daniel Mathewson - Rector

 September 20th ,  2015        

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801

 25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

                           

Christ is in Our Midst! He is and Always shall Be!

 

Elevation of the Holy Cross (Sunday After)

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

Fr. Nicholas, Margaret Suscheck, Mary Gall, Melissa Baldwin, Timothy Alberti, Debbie Kirzmanich , Vernon Baldwin, Valentina Emelianow, Michael Gresh, Karen Raydo, Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Tanya Ferra, Claudia Sukel Evelyn, Paul, George, Theodore…  The Newly illumined Jeremiah Stump, William Shontz, Wesly Shontz… Inquirers and Catechumens  David Angelini, Becky…. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko,… military servers…Greg Hargett…. The Newly Married …Tristan and Mary Gall … Departed… Karen Sanford, John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White, Nikolas Emelianow, Mark

 

 

 Tone 7            Troparion      (Resurrection)

 

By Your Cross You destroyed death.

To the thief You opened Paradise.

For the Myrrhbearers You changed weeping into joy.

And You commanded Your disciples, O Christ God,

to proclaim that You are risen,//

granting the world great mercy.

 

Tone 1            Troparion      (Elevation of the Cross)       

 

O Lord, save Your people

and bless Your inheritance!

Grant victories to the Orthodox Christians

over their adversaries;

and by virtue of Your Cross,//

preserve Your habitation!

saving our souls from death.

 

Tone 4            Troparion      (for Greatmartyr Eustathius)

 

Your holy martyr Eustáthius and his wife and sons, O Lord,

through their sufferings have received incorruptible crowns from

You, our God.

For having Your strength, they laid low their adversaries,

and shattered the powerless boldness of demons.//

Through their intercessions, save our souls!

 

Tone 7            Kontakion     (Resurrection)

 

The dominion of death can no longer hold mankind captive,

for Christ descended, shattering and destroying its powers.

Hell is bound, while the Prophets rejoice and cry:

“The Savior has come to those in faith;//

enter, you faithful, into the Resurrection!”

 

Tone 2            Kontakion   (for Greatmartyr Eustathius)

 

Having openly imitated the Passion of Christ,

and having eagerly drunk of His cup, O Eustáthius,

you became a partaker and fellow-heir of His glory,//

receiving divine forgiveness from on high from the God of all.

 

Tone 4            Kontakion     (Elevation of the Cross)        

 

As You were voluntarily raised upon the Cross for our sake,

grant mercy to those who are called by Your Name, O Christ God;

make all Orthodox Christians glad by your power,

granting them victories over their adversaries//

by bestowing on them the invincible trophy, Your weapon of peace!

 

 

16th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 7. Afterfeast of the Elevation of the Cross. Sunday after Elevation. Greatmartyr Eustathius (Eustace) Placidas, his wife, Martyr Theopistes, and their children, Martyrs Agapius and Theopistus, of Rome (ca. 118). Holy Martyr and Confessor Michael and his councilor, Theodore, Wonderworkers of Chernigov (1245). Rt. Blv. Oleg, Prince of Briansk (ca. 1280). Monk Martyr Hilarion of St. Anne Skete (Mt. Athos—1804).

 

2 Corinthians 6:1-10 (Epistle)

We then, as workers together with Him also plead with you not to receive the grace of God in vain. For He says: In an acceptable time I have heard you, And in the day of salvation I have helped you.” Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation. We give no offense in anything, that our ministry may not be blamed. But in all things we commend ourselves as ministers of God: in much patience, in tribulations, in needs, in distresses, in stripes, in imprisonments, in tumults, in labors, in sleeplessness, in fastings; by purity, by knowledge, by longsuffering, by kindness, by the Holy Spirit, by sincere love, by the word of truth, by the power of God, by the armor of righteousness on the right hand and on the left, by honor and dishonor, by evil report and good report; as deceivers, and yet true; as unknown, and yet well known; as dying, and behold we live; as chastened, and yet not killed; as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.

 

Galatians 2:16-20 (Epistle, Sunday After)

(K)nowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law but by faith in Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, that we might be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the law; for by the works of the law no flesh shall be justified.But if, while we seek to be justified by Christ, we ourselves also are found sinners, is Christ therefore a minister of sin? Certainly not!For if I build again those things which I destroyed, I make myself a transgressor.For I through the law died to the law that I might live to God.I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.

 

Matthew 25:14-30 (Gospel)

For the kingdom of heaven is like a man traveling to a far country, who called his own servants and delivered his goods to them. And to one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one, to each according to his own ability; and immediately he went on a journey. Then he who had received the five talents went and traded with them, and made another five talents. And likewise he who had received two gained two more also. But he who had received one went and dug in the ground, and hid his lord’s money. After a long time the lord of those servants came and settled accounts with them. So he who had received five talents came and brought five other talents, saying, ‘Lord, you delivered to me five talents; look, I have gained five more talents besides them.’ His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’ He also who had received two talents came and said, ‘Lord, you delivered to me two talents; look, I have gained two more talents besides them.’ His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you have been faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’ Then he who had received the one talent came and said, ‘Lord, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you have not sown, and gathering where you have not scattered seed. ’And I was afraid, and went and hid your talent in the ground. Look, there you have what is yours.’ But his lord answered and said to him, ‘You wicked and lazy servant, you knew that I reap where I have not sown, and gather where I have not scattered seed. ’So you ought to have deposited my money with the bankers, and at my coming I would have received back my own with interest. ’Therefore take the talent from him, and give it to him who has ten talents. ’For to everyone who has, more will be given, and he will have abundance; but from him who does not have, even what he has will be taken away. ’And cast the unprofitable servant into the outer darkness. There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’

Mark 8:34-9:1 (Gospel, Sunday After)

When He had called the people to Himself, with His disciples also, He said to them, “Whoever desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel’s will save it. For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul? For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him the Son of Man also will be ashamed when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels.

And He said to them, “Assuredly, I say to you that there are some standing here who will not taste death till they see the kingdom of God present with power.”

 

The Meaning of the Holy Cross

 

              The cross is a ubiquitous symbol in our Christianized culture. Everyone from movie stars to the average child can be seen wearing one. We know that Jesus Christ was lifted up on the Roman cross, which was a gruesome and public method of execution. This cross was prefigured by Moses at the parting of the red sea, and the raising up of the cross in the desert to protect the Israelites from threatening snakes. We remember Aaron at the battle with the Amalikites as he keeps his arms raised with his staff in the sign of the cross victory is gained. This victory is the victory over death, sin and the devil. The symbol of the cross became a cultural icon when St. Constantine prayed and saw a vision of a cross ‘ "By this sign shalt thou conquer" — before his victory in the Battle of Milvian Bridge in 312AD, and this is when Constantine is said to have instituted the new standard to be carried into battle, called the labarum.’   (Orthowiki) Of course it then became part of the society later.

              The Church had already known the power of the cross in the previous centuries. The Cross was real life for many early Christians who were also crucified, like the Lord Jesus. The Lord taught His disciples that, “Whoever desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel’s will save it. The Lord went voluntarily to the Cross. He had to die to free us mortals from the power of Death, and the only way was to become death and defeat it from its origin. He taught us to, as he did, to “take up” our cross. What is our cross but our circumstances and life’s lot?  Bearing our struggles, carrying our pain, patiently waiting.

          “Everyone who loves God shows himself patient and steadfast in times of suffering. Whoever bears them bravely becomes strong and obedient to God, and whoever enters the path of following the will of God conquers his natural weakness. On the other hand, whoever does not recognize his own powerlessness is proud and not inclined to submit himself to the will of the Lord. Whoever does not submit to it and hopes only in his own power does not receive the power and help of God and, not having been strengthened in spirit, cannot become patient. But whoever does not endure misfortune and afflictions has not faith, and whoever does not have faith, does not love God.’  (St. Alexis of Senaki, Concerning Afflictions). This is our cross, to bear patiently all that comes to us in love and with love. May God bless you all.  - Fr. Daniel

 

Announcements:

 

  • TODAY Sunday Church school Continues for all ages. The High School Students will join Mrs. Natalie’s class.

                 

Orthodox Christian 6th hour Prayer Service With Meditation

Every Friday 12noon @ The Ghering Health and Wellness Center 2nd Floor

Edinboro University

-       Parish Council Meeting - Wednesday Oct.14th, 5:30pm Vespers Meeting follows

 

Archdiocesan Bonfire

Sunday October 11th

– 4:00 pm Vespers, Archdiocesan Center- Cranberry

We will depart at 2pm

Fr. Daniel would like all of your youth to attend this event if possible.

 

Harvest Fest Prep

Pirohi Making- Sun. Sept. 27th – peel and cook; Mon. Sept.28th Make, cook and pack

Holupki Making- Mon October 12th, Tues. 13th, Wed. 14th – 9am

Halushki Making- Thurs. Oct. 23rd – 9am

 

Upcoming:

Parish Leaders Day- “Facing Forward” Oct. 3rd, Black Lick PA

             (See George Wasko for more info)

Archdiocesan Assembly – Philipsburg PA -  Nov. 7th

Archdiocesan Young Youth Retreat – November 14th

Archdiocesan Youth and Young adult Retreat November 21st - Pitt

 

  

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Rev. Daniel Mathewson - Rector

September 6th,  2015        

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801

 25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 

                          Christ is in Our Midst! He is and Always shall Be!

 

Miracle of St. Michael at Colesse

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

Fr. Nicholas, Margaret Suscheck, Mary Gall, Melissa Baldwin, Timothy Alberti, Debbie Kirzmanich , Vernon Baldwin, Valentina Emelianow, Michael Gresh, Karen Raydo, Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Tanya Ferra, Claudia Sukel Evelyn, Paul, George, Theodore…  The Newly illumined Jeremiah Stump, William Shontz, Wesly Shontz… Inquirers and Catechumens  David Angelini, Becky…. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko,… military servers…Greg Hargett…. The Newly Married …Tristan and Mary Gall … Departed… Karen Sanford, John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White, Mark

Panikhida (Service for those who have fallen asleep)

will be served TODAY following Divine Liturgy

 

 Tone 5Troparion         (Resurrection)

 

Let us, the faithful, praise and worship the Word,

co-eternal with the Father and the Spirit,

born for our salvation from the Virgin;

for He willed to be lifted up on the Cross in the flesh,

to endure death,

and to raise the dead//

by His glorious Resurrection.

 

Tone 4Troparion        (Archangel Michael)

 

Michael, commander of the heavenly hosts,

we who are unworthy beseech you:

by your prayers encompass us beneath the wings of your immaterial

glory,

and faithfully preserve us who fall down and cry out to you://

“Deliver us from all harm, for you are the commanders of the Powers

on high!”

 

Tone 5Kontakion         (Resurrection)

           

You descended into hell, O my Savior,

shattering its gates as Almighty,

resurrecting the dead as Creator,

and destroying the sting of death.

You have delivered Adam from the curse, O Lover of Man,//

and we cry to You: “O Lord, save us!”

 

 Tone 2Kontakion        (Archangel Michael)

 Michael, commander of God’s armies

and minister of the divine glory,

prince of the bodiless Angels

and guide of mankind;

ask for what is good for us, and for great mercy,//

as supreme commander of the Bodiless Hosts.

 

 14th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 5. Commemoration of the Miracle of the Archangel Michael at Colossæ. Martyrs Eudoxius, Zeno, and Macarius (311-312). St. Archippus (Arkhipp) of Herapolis. Martyr Romulus, and with him many others (107-115). Hieromartyr Cyril, Bishop of Gortyna (3rd-4th c.). Martyrs Cyriacus, Faustus the Presbyter, Abibas the Deacon, and 11 others, at Alexandria (ca. 250). St. David of Hermopolis in Egypt (4th c.). Hieromartyr Priest Maksym Sandowicz of Carpatho-Rus’ (1914).

 

2 Corinthians 1:21-2:4 (Epistle)

Now He who establishes us with you in Christ and has anointed us is God,who also has sealed us and given us the Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee.Moreover I call God as witness against my soul, that to spare you I came no more to Corinth.Not that we have dominion over your faith, but are fellow workers for your joy; for by faith you stand.But I determined this within myself, that I would not come again to you in sorrow. For if I make you sorrowful, then who is he who makes me glad but the one who is made sorrowful by me?  And I wrote this very thing to you, lest, when I came, I should have sorrow over those from whom I ought to have joy, having confidence in you all that my joy is the joy of you all.For out of much affliction and anguish of heart I wrote to you, with many tears, not that you should be grieved, but that you might know the love which I have so abundantly for you.

Matthew 22:1-14 (Gospel)

And Jesus answered and spoke to them again by parables and said: The kingdom of heaven is like a certain king who arranged a marriage for his son, and sent out his servants to call those who were invited to the wedding; and they were not willing to come. Again, he sent out other servants, saying, ‘Tell those who are invited, See, I have prepared my dinner; my oxen and fatted cattle are killed, and all things are ready. Come to the wedding.” ‘ But they made light of it and went their ways, one to his own farm, another to his business. And the rest seized his servants, treated them spitefully, and killed them. But when the king heard about it, he was furious. And he sent out his armies, destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city. Then he said to his servants, ‘The wedding is ready, but those who were invited were not worthy. ’Therefore go into the highways, and as many as you find, invite to the wedding.’ So those servants went out into the highways and gathered together all whom they found, both bad and good. And the wedding hall was filled with guests.

But when the king came in to see the guests, he saw a man there who did not have on a wedding garment. So he said to him, ‘Friend, how did you come in here without a wedding garment?’ And he was speechless. Then the king said to the servants, ‘Bind him hand and foot, take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’ For many are called, but few are chosen.

 Announcements:

Sunday School Kick off / Bonfire following Great Vespers Saturday, September 12th -Please bring a lawn chair, and a snack to share.

September 13th, 2015 Sunday Church School Begins- with a service for the beginning of the School Year.

Classes: Pre- School- Library

K-3rd- Mrs. Moutsos

4-6th – Mat. Gail

7th-9th – Mrs. Natalie

College and Career- Mr Shontz

Adult and 10th- 12th – Fr. Daniel

Monday, September 14th – Holy Day Elevation of the Holy Cross

Orthodox Christian 6th hour Prayer Service With Meditation Every Friday 12noon @ The Ghering Health and Wellness Center 2nd Floor Edinboro University

- Edinboro Highland Games- Sept 13th Our own Missions Team will have a booth outside from 9am-3pm. There are many things to do and see : Bagpipe, Fiddle, Celtic harp, Highland dance, Pro/Am Heavy Athletic Co competitions, Clan tents, vendor tents, photo contests and live painters, and much more. We will be participating in the clan gathering on Friday evening and throughout the day on Saturday offering nut rolls and Coffee and conversation about the Orthodox Faith. Come and See our new Cross…

- Parish Council Meeting - Wednesday Sept. 9th, 5:30pm Vespers Meeting follows -

Sunday School Teachers room Prep continued – Today

Upcoming: - Parish Leaders Day- “Facing Forward” Oct. 3rd, Black Lick PA

- Archdiocesan Bonfire – Sunday October 11th - 4pm Vespers, Dio Center

- Archdiocesan Assembly – Philipsburg PA - Nov. 7th

- Archdiocesan Young Youth Retreat – November 14th

- Archdiocesan Youth and Young adult Retreat November 21st - Pitt

 

 

Bishop Mardarije, Archimandrite Sebastian to be canonized September 5, 2015 ALHAMBRA, CA [OCA]

Ss. Mardarije and Sebastian. His Eminence, Archbishop Benjamin of San Francisco and the West will represent His Beatitude, Metropolitan Tikhon at the canonization of two clerics who served in North America in the late 19th and early 20th centuries—Bishop Mardarije [Uskokovic] and Archimandrite Sebastian [Dabovich]—at Saint Steven Serbian Orthodox Cathedral here September 5, 2015. His Holiness, Patriarch Irinej of Serbia, will preside at the liturgical celebration, at which many visiting hierarchs, civil dignitaries, and others will be present. “This is a wonderful blessing for all of us Orthodox Christians in America, and for the whole Orthodox Church throughout the world,” said His Grace, Bishop Maxim of the Western Diocese of the Serbian Orthodox Church. “When one thinks of the tremendous sacrifices that these two holy apostles made, and the many sorrows that they endured, one is especially gratified that they are now universally recognized as being among the Church’s luminaries.” At their regular session in Belgrade May 29, 2015, the members of the Holy Assembly of Hierarchs of the Serbian Orthodox Church announced their intention to glorify Bishop Mardarije and Archimandrite Sebastian as “preachers of the Gospel, God-pleasing servants of the holy life, and inspirers of many missionaries” for their pastoral labors in America and their homeland. The glorification came in response to a recommendation by the Episcopal Council of the Serbian Orthodox Church in North and South America. The annual commemorations of Saint Mardarije of Libertyville, Bishop of America-Canada, and Saint Sebastian of San Francisco and Jackson will be observed on November 29/December 12 and November 17/30 respectively. St. Sebastian of San Francisco and Jackson. Saint Sebastian was born Jovan Dabovich in San Francisco, CA in 1863—in the midst of the US Civil war. His parents were Serbian immigrants from Sassovae. From his early youth he was devoted to the Church and spent much of his time at the city’s Holy Trinity Cathedral, where he later served as a reader and teacher. In 1884, he was assigned to assist at Archangel Michael Cathedral, Sitka, AK. Shortly thereafter, he was sent to Russia for training and formation as a missionary priest. After completing three years of studies at the Saint Petersburg and Kyiv Theological Academies, he was tonsured to monastic rank and ordained to the diaconate in 1887. Returning to San Francisco, he served as a deacon at the cathedral and taught in the newly established pastoral school. On August 16, 1892, he was ordained to the priesthood and assigned to pursue missionary work in California and Washington. The following year, he succeeded Father [now Saint] Alexis Toth as rector of Saint Mary Church, Minneapolis, MN and taught at the Missionary School. In 1894, Father Sebastian returned to California, where he established the first Serbian Orthodox parish in the US in Jackson, CA. Two years later, he was reassigned to San Francisco’s Holy Trinity Cathedral while continuing his missionary efforts in Jackson. In recognition of his abilities, Archbishop Tikhon assigned him as part of the North American Mission’s Administration. During this time he wrote a book titled The Ritual, Services and Sacraments of the Holy Orthodox Church. In 1902, he was transferred to Alaska, where he served as Dean of the Sitka Deanery. With the development of additional Serbian parishes in the US, Archbishop Tikhon reassigned Father Sebastian to head the Serbian Mission in America in 1905. The Mission was based in Chicago, where Archimandrite Sebastian had organized and served as rector of Holy Resurrection Serbian Orthodox Church. He continued to guide the Serbian Mission through July 1910, when at his own request he returned to missionary work. With the opening of Saint Platon Seminary, Tenafly, NJ in 1913, he served as a member of the faculty and also was involved in numerous conferences and discussions with non-Orthodox Christian confessions. In these meetings, he was sympathetic and understanding, yet firm in his desire to reveal Orthodox Christianity as the fullness of truth and the Church of Christ. While Archimandrite Sebastian was obviously a candidate for the episcopacy is America, he likewise felt the calling to minister in his ancestral Serbia. He served as a chaplain to the Serbian Army during the Balkan War and World War I. In 1916, he requested a release from the North American Mission to serve in Serbia, where he ministered for the remainder of his life. He fell asleep in the Lord on November 30, 1940 and was interred in the Monastery of Zicha by his friend and Father Confessor, Bishop Nikolai [Velimirovic]. St. Mardarije of Libertyville. Saint Mardarije was born Ivan Uskokovic in Podgoritsa, Montenegro, in 1889. In 1907, he embraced monasticism at the Studenitsa Monastery and then relocated to Russia to study at the Saint Petersburg Theological Academy. After graduation, he was ordained by the Russian Orthodox Church and sent as a missionary to America. In 1919, he was one of five Serbian Orthodox priests who participated in the Second All-American Sobor, held in Cleveland, OH in February 1919, at which time it was recommended that the Serbian Church in Belgrade advance him to the episcopacy to organize a Serbian Orthodox Diocese in America. 

         Unfortunately, at this most chaotic time in the history of the Russian Orthodox Church, it was impossible to secure the written blessing of Patriarch [now Saint] Tikhon of Moscow.  Later in 1919, Archimandrite Mardarije returned to Belgrade, where he was assigned as head of the Rakovitsa Monastery and principal of its monastic school.  Subsequently, Bishop [now Saint] Nikolai [Velimirovic] of Ohrid was sent by Patriarch Dimitriye to administer the fledgling diocese.  Having likewise returned to America, Archimandrite Mardarije served as Saint Nikolai’s Deputy for two years, and continued to administer the diocese after the latter’s return to Belgrade.

On April 26, 1926, Archimandrite Mardarije was consecrated to the episcopacy in Belgrade.  Prior to his episcopal consecration, he had carried out most of the actual work of organizing the Serbian diocese.  He also served as parish priest in Chicago and purchased with his personal funds the land for Saint Sava Monastery in suburban Libertyville.

         From the moment of his return to America, Bishop Mardarije undertook a wide range of ministries.  He did not spare himself, nor did he fear work, although he knew that he was gravely ill with an advancing case of tuberculosis.  In 1927, he convened the first National Church Assembly of the Serbian Orthodox American-Canadian Diocese to address a variety of organizational issues.  At a clergy conference held in Youngstown, OH in 1931, he renewed his appeal for all to work for the unity and good of the diocese.  His kindness, patience and reluctance to use punitive measures resulted in a great measure of unity within the diocese by the time of his repose on December 12, 1935 at the age of 46 years.  He was interred at Libertyville’s Saint Sava Monastery.

 

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Rev. Daniel Mathewson - Rector

September 6th,  2015        

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801

 25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 

                          Christ is in Our Midst! He is and Always shall Be!

 

Miracle of St. Michael at Colesse

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

Fr. Nicholas, Margaret Suscheck, Mary Gall, Melissa Baldwin, Timothy Alberti, Debbie Kirzmanich , Vernon Baldwin, Valentina Emelianow, Michael Gresh, Karen Raydo, Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Tanya Ferra, Claudia Sukel Evelyn, Paul, George, Theodore…  The Newly illumined Jeremiah Stump, William Shontz, Wesly Shontz… Inquirers and Catechumens  David Angelini, Becky…. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko,… military servers…Greg Hargett…. The Newly Married …Tristan and Mary Gall … Departed… Karen Sanford, John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White, Mark

Panikhida (Service for those who have fallen asleep)

will be served TODAY following Divine Liturgy

 

 Tone 5Troparion         (Resurrection)

 

Let us, the faithful, praise and worship the Word,

co-eternal with the Father and the Spirit,

born for our salvation from the Virgin;

for He willed to be lifted up on the Cross in the flesh,

to endure death,

and to raise the dead//

by His glorious Resurrection.

 

Tone 4Troparion        (Archangel Michael)

 

Michael, commander of the heavenly hosts,

we who are unworthy beseech you:

by your prayers encompass us beneath the wings of your immaterial

glory,

and faithfully preserve us who fall down and cry out to you://

“Deliver us from all harm, for you are the commanders of the Powers

on high!”

 

Tone 5Kontakion         (Resurrection)

           

You descended into hell, O my Savior,

shattering its gates as Almighty,

resurrecting the dead as Creator,

and destroying the sting of death.

You have delivered Adam from the curse, O Lover of Man,//

and we cry to You: “O Lord, save us!”

 

 Tone 2Kontakion        (Archangel Michael)

 Michael, commander of God’s armies

and minister of the divine glory,

prince of the bodiless Angels

and guide of mankind;

ask for what is good for us, and for great mercy,//

as supreme commander of the Bodiless Hosts.

 

 14th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 5. Commemoration of the Miracle of the Archangel Michael at Colossæ. Martyrs Eudoxius, Zeno, and Macarius (311-312). St. Archippus (Arkhipp) of Herapolis. Martyr Romulus, and with him many others (107-115). Hieromartyr Cyril, Bishop of Gortyna (3rd-4th c.). Martyrs Cyriacus, Faustus the Presbyter, Abibas the Deacon, and 11 others, at Alexandria (ca. 250). St. David of Hermopolis in Egypt (4th c.). Hieromartyr Priest Maksym Sandowicz of Carpatho-Rus’ (1914).

 

2 Corinthians 1:21-2:4 (Epistle)

Now He who establishes us with you in Christ and has anointed us is God,who also has sealed us and given us the Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee.Moreover I call God as witness against my soul, that to spare you I came no more to Corinth.Not that we have dominion over your faith, but are fellow workers for your joy; for by faith you stand.But I determined this within myself, that I would not come again to you in sorrow. For if I make you sorrowful, then who is he who makes me glad but the one who is made sorrowful by me?  And I wrote this very thing to you, lest, when I came, I should have sorrow over those from whom I ought to have joy, having confidence in you all that my joy is the joy of you all.For out of much affliction and anguish of heart I wrote to you, with many tears, not that you should be grieved, but that you might know the love which I have so abundantly for you.

Matthew 22:1-14 (Gospel)

And Jesus answered and spoke to them again by parables and said: The kingdom of heaven is like a certain king who arranged a marriage for his son, and sent out his servants to call those who were invited to the wedding; and they were not willing to come. Again, he sent out other servants, saying, ‘Tell those who are invited, See, I have prepared my dinner; my oxen and fatted cattle are killed, and all things are ready. Come to the wedding.” ‘ But they made light of it and went their ways, one to his own farm, another to his business. And the rest seized his servants, treated them spitefully, and killed them. But when the king heard about it, he was furious. And he sent out his armies, destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city. Then he said to his servants, ‘The wedding is ready, but those who were invited were not worthy. ’Therefore go into the highways, and as many as you find, invite to the wedding.’ So those servants went out into the highways and gathered together all whom they found, both bad and good. And the wedding hall was filled with guests.

But when the king came in to see the guests, he saw a man there who did not have on a wedding garment. So he said to him, ‘Friend, how did you come in here without a wedding garment?’ And he was speechless. Then the king said to the servants, ‘Bind him hand and foot, take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’ For many are called, but few are chosen.

 Announcements:

Sunday School Kick off / Bonfire following Great Vespers Saturday, September 12th -Please bring a lawn chair, and a snack to share.

September 13th, 2015 Sunday Church School Begins- with a service for the beginning of the School Year.

Classes: Pre- School- Library

K-3rd- Mrs. Moutsos

4-6th – Mat. Gail

7th-9th – Mrs. Natalie

College and Career- Mr Shontz

Adult and 10th- 12th – Fr. Daniel

Monday, September 14th – Holy Day Elevation of the Holy Cross

Orthodox Christian 6th hour Prayer Service With Meditation Every Friday 12noon @ The Ghering Health and Wellness Center 2nd Floor Edinboro University

- Edinboro Highland Games- Sept 13th Our own Missions Team will have a booth outside from 9am-3pm. There are many things to do and see : Bagpipe, Fiddle, Celtic harp, Highland dance, Pro/Am Heavy Athletic Co competitions, Clan tents, vendor tents, photo contests and live painters, and much more. We will be participating in the clan gathering on Friday evening and throughout the day on Saturday offering nut rolls and Coffee and conversation about the Orthodox Faith. Come and See our new Cross…

- Parish Council Meeting - Wednesday Sept. 9th, 5:30pm Vespers Meeting follows -

Sunday School Teachers room Prep continued – Today

Upcoming: - Parish Leaders Day- “Facing Forward” Oct. 3rd, Black Lick PA

- Archdiocesan Bonfire – Sunday October 11th - 4pm Vespers, Dio Center

- Archdiocesan Assembly – Philipsburg PA - Nov. 7th

- Archdiocesan Young Youth Retreat – November 14th

- Archdiocesan Youth and Young adult Retreat November 21st - Pitt

 

 

Bishop Mardarije, Archimandrite Sebastian to be canonized September 5, 2015 ALHAMBRA, CA [OCA]

Ss. Mardarije and Sebastian. His Eminence, Archbishop Benjamin of San Francisco and the West will represent His Beatitude, Metropolitan Tikhon at the canonization of two clerics who served in North America in the late 19th and early 20th centuries—Bishop Mardarije [Uskokovic] and Archimandrite Sebastian [Dabovich]—at Saint Steven Serbian Orthodox Cathedral here September 5, 2015. His Holiness, Patriarch Irinej of Serbia, will preside at the liturgical celebration, at which many visiting hierarchs, civil dignitaries, and others will be present. “This is a wonderful blessing for all of us Orthodox Christians in America, and for the whole Orthodox Church throughout the world,” said His Grace, Bishop Maxim of the Western Diocese of the Serbian Orthodox Church. “When one thinks of the tremendous sacrifices that these two holy apostles made, and the many sorrows that they endured, one is especially gratified that they are now universally recognized as being among the Church’s luminaries.” At their regular session in Belgrade May 29, 2015, the members of the Holy Assembly of Hierarchs of the Serbian Orthodox Church announced their intention to glorify Bishop Mardarije and Archimandrite Sebastian as “preachers of the Gospel, God-pleasing servants of the holy life, and inspirers of many missionaries” for their pastoral labors in America and their homeland. The glorification came in response to a recommendation by the Episcopal Council of the Serbian Orthodox Church in North and South America. The annual commemorations of Saint Mardarije of Libertyville, Bishop of America-Canada, and Saint Sebastian of San Francisco and Jackson will be observed on November 29/December 12 and November 17/30 respectively. St. Sebastian of San Francisco and Jackson. Saint Sebastian was born Jovan Dabovich in San Francisco, CA in 1863—in the midst of the US Civil war. His parents were Serbian immigrants from Sassovae. From his early youth he was devoted to the Church and spent much of his time at the city’s Holy Trinity Cathedral, where he later served as a reader and teacher. In 1884, he was assigned to assist at Archangel Michael Cathedral, Sitka, AK. Shortly thereafter, he was sent to Russia for training and formation as a missionary priest. After completing three years of studies at the Saint Petersburg and Kyiv Theological Academies, he was tonsured to monastic rank and ordained to the diaconate in 1887. Returning to San Francisco, he served as a deacon at the cathedral and taught in the newly established pastoral school. On August 16, 1892, he was ordained to the priesthood and assigned to pursue missionary work in California and Washington. The following year, he succeeded Father [now Saint] Alexis Toth as rector of Saint Mary Church, Minneapolis, MN and taught at the Missionary School. In 1894, Father Sebastian returned to California, where he established the first Serbian Orthodox parish in the US in Jackson, CA. Two years later, he was reassigned to San Francisco’s Holy Trinity Cathedral while continuing his missionary efforts in Jackson. In recognition of his abilities, Archbishop Tikhon assigned him as part of the North American Mission’s Administration. During this time he wrote a book titled The Ritual, Services and Sacraments of the Holy Orthodox Church. In 1902, he was transferred to Alaska, where he served as Dean of the Sitka Deanery. With the development of additional Serbian parishes in the US, Archbishop Tikhon reassigned Father Sebastian to head the Serbian Mission in America in 1905. The Mission was based in Chicago, where Archimandrite Sebastian had organized and served as rector of Holy Resurrection Serbian Orthodox Church. He continued to guide the Serbian Mission through July 1910, when at his own request he returned to missionary work. With the opening of Saint Platon Seminary, Tenafly, NJ in 1913, he served as a member of the faculty and also was involved in numerous conferences and discussions with non-Orthodox Christian confessions. In these meetings, he was sympathetic and understanding, yet firm in his desire to reveal Orthodox Christianity as the fullness of truth and the Church of Christ. While Archimandrite Sebastian was obviously a candidate for the episcopacy is America, he likewise felt the calling to minister in his ancestral Serbia. He served as a chaplain to the Serbian Army during the Balkan War and World War I. In 1916, he requested a release from the North American Mission to serve in Serbia, where he ministered for the remainder of his life. He fell asleep in the Lord on November 30, 1940 and was interred in the Monastery of Zicha by his friend and Father Confessor, Bishop Nikolai [Velimirovic]. St. Mardarije of Libertyville. Saint Mardarije was born Ivan Uskokovic in Podgoritsa, Montenegro, in 1889. In 1907, he embraced monasticism at the Studenitsa Monastery and then relocated to Russia to study at the Saint Petersburg Theological Academy. After graduation, he was ordained by the Russian Orthodox Church and sent as a missionary to America. In 1919, he was one of five Serbian Orthodox priests who participated in the Second All-American Sobor, held in Cleveland, OH in February 1919, at which time it was recommended that the Serbian Church in Belgrade advance him to the episcopacy to organize a Serbian Orthodox Diocese in America. 

         Unfortunately, at this most chaotic time in the history of the Russian Orthodox Church, it was impossible to secure the written blessing of Patriarch [now Saint] Tikhon of Moscow.  Later in 1919, Archimandrite Mardarije returned to Belgrade, where he was assigned as head of the Rakovitsa Monastery and principal of its monastic school.  Subsequently, Bishop [now Saint] Nikolai [Velimirovic] of Ohrid was sent by Patriarch Dimitriye to administer the fledgling diocese.  Having likewise returned to America, Archimandrite Mardarije served as Saint Nikolai’s Deputy for two years, and continued to administer the diocese after the latter’s return to Belgrade.

On April 26, 1926, Archimandrite Mardarije was consecrated to the episcopacy in Belgrade.  Prior to his episcopal consecration, he had carried out most of the actual work of organizing the Serbian diocese.  He also served as parish priest in Chicago and purchased with his personal funds the land for Saint Sava Monastery in suburban Libertyville.

         From the moment of his return to America, Bishop Mardarije undertook a wide range of ministries.  He did not spare himself, nor did he fear work, although he knew that he was gravely ill with an advancing case of tuberculosis.  In 1927, he convened the first National Church Assembly of the Serbian Orthodox American-Canadian Diocese to address a variety of organizational issues.  At a clergy conference held in Youngstown, OH in 1931, he renewed his appeal for all to work for the unity and good of the diocese.  His kindness, patience and reluctance to use punitive measures resulted in a great measure of unity within the diocese by the time of his repose on December 12, 1935 at the age of 46 years.  He was interred at Libertyville’s Saint Sava Monastery.

 

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 Rev. Daniel Mathewson - Rector

 August 30th ,  2015        

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801

 25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

                                                     Christ is in Our Midst!  He is and Always shall Be!

 Sts. Alexander, John and Paul

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

Margaret Suscheck, Mary Gall, Melissa Baldwin, Timothy Alberti, Debbie Kirzmanich , Vernon Baldwin, Valentina Emelianow, Michael Gresh, Karen Raydo, Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Tanya Ferra, Claudia Sukel Evelyn, Paul, George, Theodore…  The Newly illumined Jeremiah Stump, William Shontz, Wesly Shontz… Inquirers and Catechumens  David Angelini, Becky…. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko,… military servers…Greg Hargett…. The Newly Married …Tristan and Mary Gall … Departed… Karen Sanford, John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White, Maggie, Mark

 

 Tone 4 Troparion        (Resurrection)

When the women Disciples of the Lord

learned from the Angel the joyous message of the Resurrection,

they cast away the ancestral curse

and elatedly told the Apostles:

“Death is overthrown!

Christ God is risen,//

granting the world great mercy!”

 

Tone 2Troparion        (St John the Baptist)

 

The memory of the righteous is celebrated with hymns of praise,

but the Lord’s testimony is sufficient for you, O Forerunner.

You were shown in truth to be the most honorable of the Prophets,

for you were deemed worthy to baptize in the steams of the Jordan Him

Whom they foretold.

Therefore, having suffered for the truth with joy,

you proclaimed to those in hell God Who appeared in the flesh,//

Who takes away the sin of the world and grants us great mercy.

 

Tone 4Troparion        (SS Alexander, John, and Paul the New)

 

O God of our Fathers,

always act with kindness towards us;

take not Your mercy from us,

but guide our lives in peace//

through the prayers of the Patriarchs Alexander, John, and Paul!

 

Tone 4Kontakion        (Resurrection)  

 

My Savior and Redeemer

as God rose from the tomb and delivered the earth-born from their chains.

He has shattered the gates of hell,

and as Master,//

He has risen on the third day!

 

Tone 8Kontakion        (SS Alexander, John, and Paul the New)

 

Set a flame by the love of Christ, O glorious ones,

you took up the yoke of His precious Cross revealing, yourselves as

            Followers in His footsteps by your way of life,

and you became partakers of His divine glory,

divinely-wise Alexander, with wonderful John and glorious Paul.

As you stand before His throne, earnestly pray for our souls!

 

Scripture Readings:

 

13th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 4.Translation of the Relics of Rt. Blv. Great Prince St. Alexander Nevsky (1724). Sts. Alexander (340), John (595), and Paul the New (784), Patriarchs of Constantinople. Repose of Ven. Alexander, Abbot of Svir (1533). Uncovering of the Relics of St. Daniel, Prince of Moscow (1652). St. Christopher of Palestine (6th c.). St. Fantinus of Calabria (9th c.). Synaxis of the Serbian Hierarchs: Ss. Sava I (1237), Arsenius I (1266), Sava II (1269), Eustathius I (ca. 1285), James (1292), Nicodemus (1325), and Daniel (1338), Archbishops; Joannicus II (1354), Spyridon (1388), Ephraim II (after 1395), Macarius (1574), Gabriel I (1659), Patriarchs; and Gregory, Bishop.

 

1 Corinthians 16:13-24 (Epistle)

 

Watch, stand fast in the faith, be brave, be strong. Let all that you do be done with love. I urge you, brethren – you know the household of Stephanas, that it is the firstfruits of Achaia, and that they have devoted themselves to the ministry of the saints – that you also submit to such, and to everyone who works and labors with us. I am glad about the coming of Stephanas, Fortunatus, and Achaicus, for what was lacking on your part they supplied. For they refreshed my spirit and yours. Therefore acknowledge such men. The churches of Asia greet you. Aquila and Priscilla greet you heartily in the Lord, with the church that is in their house. All the brethren greet you. Greet one another with a holy kiss. The salutation with my own hand – Paul’s. If anyone does not love the Lord Jesus Christ, let him be accursed. O Lord, come! The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. My love be with you all in Christ Jesus. Amen.

 

Matthew 21:33-42 (Gospel)

 

Hear another parable: There was a certain landowner who planted a vineyard and set a hedge around it, dug a winepress in it and built a tower. And he leased it to vinedressers and went into a far country. Now when vintage-time drew near, he sent his servants to the vinedressers, that they might receive its fruit. And the vinedressers took his servants, beat one, killed one, and stoned another. Again he sent other servants, more than the first, and they did likewise to them. Then last of all he sent his son to them, saying, ‘They will respect my son.’ But when the vinedressers saw the son, they said among themselves, ‘This is the heir. Come, let us kill him and seize his inheritance.’ So they took him and cast him out of the vineyard and killed him. Therefore, when the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those vinedressers?  They said to Him, “He will destroy those wicked men miserably, and lease his vineyard to other vinedressers who will render to him the fruits in their seasons.” Jesus said to them, “Have you never read in the Scriptures: ‘The stone which the builders rejected Has become the chief cornerstone. This was the LORD’s doing, And it is marvelous in our eyes’?

Announcements:

Sunday School Kick off / Bonfire following Great Vespers Saturday, September 12th -Please bring a lawn chair, and a snack to share.

September 13th, 2015 Sunday Church School Begins- with a service for the beginning of the School Year.

Classes:

Pre- School- Library

K-3rd- Mrs. Moutsos

4-6th – Mat. Gail

7th-9th – Mrs. Natalie

10th- 12th – Fr. Daniel

College and Career- Mr. Shontz

Tuesday, September 8th - Holy Day -  Birth of the Theotokos

Monday, September 14th – Holy Day Elevation of the Holy Cross

Orthodox Christian 6th hour Prayer Service With Meditation Every Friday 12noon @ The Ghering Health and Wellness Center 2nd Floor Edinboro University -

Edinboro Highland Games- Sept 12th -

Parish Council Meeting - Wednesday Sept. 9th, 5:30pm Vespers Meeting 6:00pm -

Sunday School Teachers Meeting and room Prep – Today Sunday August 30th -

Archdiocesan Bonfire – Sunday October 11th - 4pm Vespers

Mark your calendar: 2015 Harvest Fest Saturday, October 24th  

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 Rev. Daniel Mathewson - Rector

 August 23rd ,  2015        

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801

 25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 1641

 

 Christ is in Our Midst!  He is and Always shall Be!

 Leave taking of the feast of the Dormition

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

Mary Gall, Melissa Baldwin, Timothy Alberti, Debbie  Kirzmanich , Vernon Baldwin, Valentina Emelianow, Michael Gresh, Karen Raydo, Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Tanya Ferra, Claudia Sukel Evelyn, Cody, Casmere, Paul, George… The Newly illumined Jeremiah Stump, William Shontz, Wesly Shontz… Inquirers and Catechumens  David Angelini, …. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko,… military servers…Greg Hargett…. The Newly Married …Tristan and Mary Gall … Departed… Karen Sanford, John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White, Maggie, Mark

 Today’s Music:

Tone 3                   Troparion           (Resurrection)

Let the heavens rejoice!

Let the earth be glad!

For the Lord has shown strength with His arm.

He has trampled down death by death.

He has become the first born of the dead.

He has delivered us from the depths of hell,

and has granted to the world//

great mercy.

 

Tone 1            Troparion     (Dormition)

 In giving birth thou didst preserve thy virginity.

In falling asleep thou didst not forsake the world, O Theotokos.

Thou wast translated to life, O Mother of Life,//

and by thy prayers thou dost deliver our souls from death.

 

Tone 3            Kontakion      (Resurrection)

 On this day Thou didst rise from the tomb, O Merciful One,

leading us from the gates of death.

On this day Adam exults as Eve rejoices;

with the Prophets and Patriarchs//

they unceasingly praise the divine majesty of Thy power.

 

Tone 2                         Kontakion   (Dormition)

 Neither the tomb, nor death, could hold the Theotokos,

who is constant in prayer and our firm hope in her intercessions.

For being the Mother of Life,

she was translated to life //

by the One Who dwelt in her virginal womb.

 

Many rich and powerful men would pay dearly to see the Lord or His Most Pure Mother, but God does not appear in riches, but in the humble heart... Every one of the poorest men can be humbled and come to know God. It need neither money nor reputation to come to know God, but only humility.

(St. Silouan the Athonite, Writings, I.11,21)

 

12th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 3. Leavetaking of the Dormition. Martyr Lupus, slave of St. Demetrius of Thessalonica (4th c.). Hieromartyr Irenæus, Bishop of Lyons (202). St. Eutychius (ca. 540) and Florentius (547), of Nursia. St. Callinicus, Patriarch of Constantinople (705).Scripture Lessons:

 

 

1 Corinthians 15:1-11 (Epistle)

Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received and in which you stand, by which also you are saved, if you hold fast that word which I preached to you – unless you believed in vain. For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures, and that He was seen by Cephas, then by the twelve. After that He was seen by over five hundred brethren at once, of whom the greater part remain to the present, but some have fallen asleep. After that He was seen by James, then by all the apostles. Then last of all He was seen by me also, as by one born out of due time. For I am the least of the apostles, who am not worthy to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace toward me was not in vain; that I labored more abundantly than they all, yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me. Therefore, whether it was I or they, so we preach and so you believed.

 

 

Matthew 19:16-26 (Gospel)

Now behold, one came and said to Him, “Good Teacher, what good thing shall I do that I may have eternal life?”  So He said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. But if you want to enter into life, keep the commandments.” He said to Him, “Which ones?” Jesus said, “’You shall not murder,’ ‘You shall not commit adultery,’ ‘You shall not steal,’ ‘You shall not bear false witness, ’Honor your father and your mother,’ and, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ “ The young man said to Him, “All these things I have kept from my youth. What do I still lack?” Jesus said to him, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell what you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.” But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions. Then Jesus said to His disciples, “Assuredly, I say to you that it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. And again I say to you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God. When His disciples heard it, they were greatly astonished, saying, “Who then can be saved?” But Jesus looked at them and said to them, “With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”

 Announcements:

Today’s Coffee Hour is sponsored by the Missions Team – Please give cheerfully!

Sunday School Kick off / Bonfire following Great Vespers Saturday, September 12th -Please bring a lawn chair, and a snack to share.

September 13th, 2015 Sunday Church School Begins- with a service for the beginning of the School Year. Monday,

September 14th –Elevation of the Holy Cross

 

Ladies Alter Society Meeting – Today During Coffee Hour.

Parish Council Meeting - Wednesday Sept. 9th,

5:30pm Vespers Meeting 6:00pm

Sunday School Teachers Meeting and room Prep – Sunday August 30th

 

Mark your calendar:

2015 Harvest Fest

Saturday, October 24th

…Invite a friend….

Good food. Good Music. Good Fun. 

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 Rev. Daniel Mathewson - Rector

 August 9th, 2015        

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801

 25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 

                               Christ is in Our Midst!  He is and Always shall Be!

 

St Herman of Alaska

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

Megan Clayton and Family, Melissa Baldwin, Timothy Alberti, Debbie Kirzmanich , Vernon Baldwin, Valentina Emelianow, Michael Gresh, Karen Raydo, Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Tanya Ferra, Claudia Sukel Evelyn, Cody, Casmere, Paul, George…  The Newly illumined Jeremiah Stump, William Shontz, Wesly Shontz… Inquirers and Catechumens  David Angelini, …. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko,… military servers…Greg Hargett…. The Newly Married …Tristan and Mary Gall … Departed… Karen Sanford, John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White, Mark

 

 10th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 1. Afterfeast of the Transfiguration. GLORIFICATION OF VEN. HERMAN OF ALASKA, WONDERWORKER OF ALL AMERICA (1970). Apostle Matthias (ca. 63). Martyr Anthony of Alexandria. Ven. Psoï of Egypt (4th c.). Martyrs Julian, Marcian, John, James, Alexius, Demetrius, Photius (Phocas), Peter, Leontius, and Mary, of Constantinople (730).

 

Scripture Lessons:

 

1 Corinthians 4:9-16 (Epistle)

For I think that God has displayed us, the apostles, last, as men condemned to death; for we have been made a spectacle to the world, both to angels and to men. We are fools for Christ’s sake, but you are wise in Christ! We are weak, but you are strong! You are distinguished, but we are dishonored!To the present hour we both hunger and thirst, and we are poorly clothed, and beaten, and homeless.And we labor, working with our own hands. Being reviled, we bless; being persecuted, we endure;being defamed, we entreat. We have been made as the filth of the world, the offscouring of all things until now.I do not write these things to shame you, but as my beloved children I warn you.For though you might have ten thousand instructors in Christ, yet you do not have many fathers; for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the gospel.

Therefore I urge you, imitate me.

Galatians 5:22-6:2 (Epistle, Saint)

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,

gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted.Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.
Matthew 17:14-23 (Gospel)

And when they had come to the multitude, a man came to Him, kneeling down to Him and saying,Lord, have mercy on my son, for he is an epileptic and suffers severely; for he often falls into the fire and often into the water.So I brought him to Your disciples, but they could not cure him.Then Jesus answered and said, “O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? How long shall I bear with you? Bring him here to Me.”And Jesus rebuked the demon, and it came out of him; and the child was cured from that very hour.Then the disciples came to Jesus privately and said, “Why could we not cast it out?”So Jesus said to them, “Because of your unbelief; for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you.However, this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting.Now while they were staying in Galilee, Jesus said to them, “The Son of Man is about to be betrayed into the hands of men,and they will kill Him, and the third day He will be raised up. And they were exceedingly sorrowful.

Luke 6:17-23 (Gospel, Saint)

And He came down with them and stood on a level place with a crowd of His disciples and a great multitude of people from all Judea and Jerusalem, and from the seacoast of Tyre and Sidon, who came to hear Him and be healed of their diseases, as well as those who were tormented with unclean spirits. And they were healed. And the whole multitude sought to touch Him, for power went out from Him and healed them all. Then He lifted up His eyes toward His disciples, and said: Blessed are you poor, for yours is the kingdom of God. Blessed are you who hunger now, for you shall be filled. Blessed are you who weep now, for you shall laugh. Blessed are you when men hate you, and when they exclude you, and revile you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of Man’s sake. Rejoice in that day and leap for joy! For indeed your reward is great in heaven, for in like manner their fathers did to the prophets.

 

Why The Orthodox Honor Mary by Fr. Stephen Freeman

The most difficult part of my Orthodox experience to discuss with the non-Orthodox is the place and role of the Mother of God in the Church and in my life. It is, on the one hand, deeply theological and even essential to a right understanding of the Orthodox faith, while, on the other hand, being intensely personal beyond the bounds of conversation. I am convinced, as well, that the Orthodox approach to Mary is part of the apostolic deposit, and not a later accretion.

When I was doing graduate studies some decades back, I decided to concentrate my historical research on the “cult of Mary” (the veneration of Mary) in the historical Church. With that decision came a semester of intensive research, combing through materials of every sort. And throughout all of that research the question, “When did this begin?” was uppermost in my mind. I came to a surprising conclusion. It began at the beginning.

The historical evidence for Mary’s veneration is so obvious that it is simply overlooked: her place in the gospel accounts. I find much of the “historical” evidence about Christ to have a similar feature. It is amusing, and annoying, to read modern historical critics of the New Testament who come away from those documents arguing that the notion of Christ’s divinity was a later development. Somehow they manage to read the New Testament and miss the most obvious thing: the writers all believe that Jesus is divine. They fail to notice that the very existence of the “Jesus material” of the New Testament exists solely because its writers believed He was God. Every line flows from that belief.

In a similar manner, Mary’s place within the gospels carries a message of veneration. Those who do not see this obvious feature of the New Testament generally get lost in the details, reading too much into sayings such as Jesus’ “Woman what have I to do with you?” and the like.

First, the stories of Mary hold an important place in the gospel narrative. St. Mark has the least mention of her, with no birth narrative. St. Luke has the most material, and St. John perhaps the most important. Biblical critics take a “least is best” approach and will say things like, “St. Mark knows nothing of a birth narrative,” a patently overstated claim.

For me, it is the seemingly “gratuitous” material that points to veneration of Mary. St. Luke’s account has the Magnificat hymn in which Mary declares, “All generations will call me blessed.” It is a phrase that can only be compared to God’s promise to Abraham:

I will make you a great nation; I will bless you And make your name great; And you shall be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, And I will curse him who curses you; And in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.” (Gen 12:2-3)

In Mary’s encounter with her kinswoman Elizabeth (and with the child in her womb, John), the focus is on Mary herself rather than the child in her womb.

But why is this granted to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For indeed, as soon as the voice of your greeting sounded in my ears, the babe leaped in my womb for joy. (Luk 1:43-44)

Later in Luke, when the child Jesus is presented in the Temple, the elder Simeon prophesies: 

Behold, this Child is destined for the fall and rising of many in Israel, and for a sign which will be spoken against (yes, a sword will pierce through your own soul also), that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed. (Luk 2:34-35)

Here, Mary is linked to the Cross of Christ in the piercing of her soul.

I describe these stories as “gratuitous” in that they go well beyond the simple point of the Virgin Birth. Mark and John have no mention of the conception or birth of Christ (though they both include Mary in their narrative). The abundance of Marian material in Luke can only point to her veneration in the primitive Church. She is not just the Virgin who gives birth to Christ – she is also blessed by all; she is the cause of joy to the Prophet John even in his mother’s womb; she is a unique participant in the sufferings of Christ, destined herself for a mystical sword that will pierce her very soul.

This is information that points to the unique place of Mary in the first century Christian community. How can the Church not venerate one whom John the Baptist greeted with a leap of joy when he was in the womb? How can the Christian community be rightly centered on the Crucified Christ and ignore the soul-pierced Mother? The material in Luke is prima facie evidence of the primitive veneration of the Mother of God. That veneration never ceases in the Church, but matures over time as the Church considers the meaning and depth of Christ’s Incarnation, Crucifixion and Resurrection.

It is obvious that many Christians would prefer to read only Mark’s gospel and ignore the obvious implications in Luke and John.

John’s gospel seems to me to be marked with a profound understanding of the mystery of Mary. Of special note is his first mention of her. We meet her at the Wedding in Cana. John provides no introduction to her character – he presumes a prior knowledge on the part of his readers. At the Wedding, the wine runs out. And with no explanation of a practical sort, John simply relates that Mary tells Jesus, “They have no wine.”

It is profound. His disciples have seen nothing as yet. No miracles have been performed (this Wedding will be the scene of the first miracle). And yet Mary knows who He is and what He means. She is already fully initiated into the truth of His life and ministry.

Many Protestants have made much of Christ’s reply to her: “What is this between you and me?” They have treated the statement to mean: “What business is this of yours?” In fact, it simply asks, “What is this between you and me?” But St. John puts the statement in a context: “For mine hour has not yet come.” Christ says to His mother, “It’s not time. This doesn’t have to begin yet.”

They share the bond of the coming Cross. His life will be offered, a sword will pierce her soul. And once He begins, nothing can stop the movement to Golgotha. Her response is simple: “Do whatever He tells you.” It is a repetition of her earlier, “Be it unto me according to your word.” Her complete humility and self-emptying before God is a human reflection of the self-emptying of Christ on the Cross. With this new “fiat,” the inexorable journey to the Cross begins.

The mystery of her participation in Christ does not end with historical moments – for the sharing of those moments in the gospels are in no way merely concerned with the historical record. They are primarily theological moments. She holds not just a place in the history of salvation, but in its theological understanding and existential participation as well. The gospels are written for our salvation, and not as mere information.

And it is this theological and existential reality that are missing from many contemporary accounts of the Christian faith. The question is often asked, “Why do I need to venerate Mary?”

First, the Orthodox would not say, “You need to venerate Mary.” Rather, we say, “You need to venerate Mary as the Theotokos” (birth-giver of God). This is the theological title dogmatically assigned to her by the Third Ecumenical Council. She is venerated because she is Theotokos. To venerate the Theotokos is an inherent part of rightly believing in the Incarnation of the God-Man. To ignore her as Theotokos is to hold a diminished and inadequate understanding of the Incarnation.

But this is speaking in terms of mere ideas. The Incarnation is not an idea – it is a reality – both historical and now eternal. The Incarnation is the God/Man Jesus Christ. And, more fully, the Incarnation is the God/Man Jesus Christ born of the Holy Spirit and the Theotokos. This is what is asserted in the Nicene Creed.

The reality of this statement is not an idea, but a Person, both in the case of the God/Man, and in the case of the Theotokos. The act of believing in the Incarnation of Christ is made manifest in the worship that is properly directed towards Him and in the veneration that is properly directed towards the Theotokos.

And it is this that is so difficult to explain to the non-Orthodox. For doctrines are easily perceived by them as ideas, even factoids. In Orthodoxy, these doctrines are living realities. It is of little importance to acknowledge that someone is, in fact, my mother. It is of the utmost importance that I honor my mother (by Divine command) and love her. We do notthink doctrine. Doctrine is a description of the realities by which we live. We venerate the Theotokos because, knowing what we know, we cannot do otherwise.

 

Announcements:

 

We will have some special YOUTH events over the Summer…

 

  • Altar Boy Camp out – August 9-10th
  • Sunday School Teachers Training/Meeting, Sunday August 16th 12-2pm
  • Family Fun Day – Archdiocesan Center 3:30pm (raffle tickets available)
  • Sunday School Kick off- September 13th, 2015

                       

 

TODAY Altar Server Campout - August 9-10th celebrating and commemorating the Holy Martyr St Lawrence the deacon to whom our outdoor pavilion is dedicated. We will have vespers on Sunday Evening at 6pm and Divine Liturgy in the Morning at 9:30am. The boys should arrive around 5pm for set up and prep. We will have a cookout, campfire and evening activities. Following Liturgy we will offer lunch and afternoon activities. Fathers, Godfathers and Grand fathers are encouraged to join us if you are able. We will end our time at 2-3pm.

 

ArchDiocesan Family Day  

Sunday August 16, 3:30pm till ?

Diocesan Center 8641 Peters Road, Cranberry Township Pa

Music, activities, special events, games, delicious food! Come for a while! Come for the whole day! Short service of Thanksgiving celebrated by His Eminence, Archbishop Melchisedek at 3:30 p.m.

Win a Samsung Galaxy Pro Tablet (valued at $279),  Win cash and other prizes, Chinese Auction - selection of gifts for adults and young people - Don't forget to bring your baked goods

Donate food items for the St. Cyril of White Lake Food Pantry

 Questions, comments, and (especially) suggestions should be forwarded to Lory Nescott at (412) 367—8264 or lorynescott@gmajl.çom.  We're always looking for ways to make yourday better  and more entoyable! 

Carpatho-Russian Church Tour

(Bus tour beginning in Erie will tour 3 Local Parishes in the Area)

Thursday, August 20th 10am-5pm

If you are interested call Phyllis at 814-864-5232

(ASAP --There are five spots to fill)

 

Parish Council Meeting- Wednesday August 12th, 5:30pm Vespers Meeting 6:00pm

 

 

 

 

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 

Rev. Daniel Mathewson - Rector

 

July 26th, 2015        

 

Parish phone: 814-734-3801

 

25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 

 

www.orthodoxcrossingville.org

 

                               Christ is in Our Midst!  He is and Always shall Be!

 

St Jacob Enlightener of the Peoples of Alaska

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

Megan Clayton and Family, Melissa Baldwin, Timothy Alberti, Debbie Kirzmanich , Vernon Baldwin, Valentina Emelianow, Michael Gresh, Karen Raydo, Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Tanya Ferra, Claudia Sekel Evelyn, Cody, Casmere, Paul…  The Newly illumined Jeremiah Stump, William Shontz, Wesly Shontz… Inquirers and Catechumens  David Angelini, …. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko,… military servers…Greg Hargett…. The Newly Married …Tristan and Mary Gall … Departed… John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White, Mark

 8th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 7. The Repose of St. Jacob (Netsvetov), Enlightener of the Peoples of Alaska (1864). Hieromartyr Hermolaus and Martyrs Hermippus and Hermocrates at Nicomedia (ca. 305). Ven. Moses the Hungarian, of the Kiev Caves (Near Caves—ca. 1043). Martyr Parasceva of Rome (2nd c.). Ven. Gerontius of St. Anne Skete (Mt. Athos). The “EMVOLON” Icon of the Most-holy Theotokos in Constantinople.

 

Scripture Lessons:

 

Philippians 3:7-14 (Epistle, Saint)

But what things were gain to me, these I have counted loss for Christ. Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ and be found in Him, not having my own righteousness, which is from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which is from God by faith; that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death, if, by any means, I may attain to the resurrection from the dead. Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.

 

1 Corinthians 1:10-18 (Epistle)

Now I plead with you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment. For it has been declared to me concerning you, my brethren, by those of Chloe’s household, that there are contentions among you. Now I say this, that each of you says, “I am of Paul,” or “I am of Apollos,” or “I am of Cephas,” or “I am of Christ.” Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul? I thank God that I baptized none of you except Crispus and Gaius, lest anyone should say that I had baptized in my own name. Yes, I also baptized the household of Stephanas. Besides, I do not know whether I baptized any other. For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel, not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of no effect. For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.


Mark 10:29-31, 42-45 (Gospel, Saint)

So Jesus answered and said, “Assuredly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands, for My sake and the gospel’s, who shall not receive a hundredfold now in this time – houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions – and in the age to come, eternal life. But many who are first will be last, and the last first. But Jesus called them to Himself and said to them, “You know that those who are considered rulers over the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them. Yet it shall not be so among you; but whoever desires to become great among you shall be your servant. And whoever of you desires to be first shall be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.

 

Matthew 14:14-22 (Gospel)

And when Jesus went out He saw a great multitude; and He was moved with compassion for them, and healed their sick. When it was evening, His disciples came to Him, saying, “This is a deserted place, and the hour is already late. Send the multitudes away, that they may go into the villages and buy themselves food.” But Jesus said to them, “They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat.” And they said to Him, “We have here only five loaves and two fish.” He said, “Bring them here to Me.” Then He commanded the multitudes to sit down on the grass. And He took the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up to heaven, He blessed and broke and gave the loaves to the disciples; and the disciples gave to the multitudes. So they all ate and were filled, and they took up twelve baskets full of the fragments that remained. Now those who had eaten were about five thousand men, besides women and children. Immediately Jesus made His disciples get into the boat and go before Him to the other side, while He sent the multitudes away.

 

Our First Saint Born in America

 

St Jacob Enlightener of the peoples of Alaska

 

 

On October 31, 1826, he was ordained to the Holy Diaconate and assigned to serve the altar of the Holy Trinity-St Peter Church in Irkutsk. Two years later, on March 4, 1828, Archbishop Michael, who had earlier ordained Father John Veniaminov (St Innocent), elevated the godly deacon Jacob to the Holy Priesthood. 

 

When he arrived in Atka, the Church of St Nicholas had not yet been built. So, with his own hands Father Jacob constructed a large tent (Acts 18:3) in which he conducted the services. For Father Jacob the services of the Church were life: life for his people and life for himself. It was in the worship of God that he found both strength and joy. Later he would transport this tent with him on his missionary journeys, and like Moses in the wilderness, the grace of God was found wherever this tent was taken (Num 4:1 ff; 10:17 ff).

 

Father Jacob was a physician of bodies as well as souls. He often cared for the sick among his flock even to his own detriment. During the winter of 1850-1851 the saint was himself ravaged with illness. Yet he cared for the sick and dispensed medicine to them every day. Father Jacob’s preaching often brought together in the Holy Faith tribes who were traditional enemies. One example from his journal reads:

 

“Beginning in the morning, upon my invitation, all the Kol’chane and Ingalit from the Yukon and the local ones gathered at my place and I preached the word of God, concluding at noon. Everyone listened to the preaching with attention and without discussion or dissent, and in the end they all expressed faith and their wish to accept Holy Baptism, both the Kol’chane and the Ingatit (formerly traditional enemies). I made a count by families and in groups, and then in the afternoon began the baptismal service. First I baptized 50 Kol’chane and Ingalit men, the latter from the Yukon and Innoko. It was already evening when I completed the service. March 21, 1853.”

 

So it was that this apostolic man, this new Job, conducted himself during his earthly course. There are many other deeds and wonders which he performed, many known and many more known only to God. Few missionaries in history have had to endure the hardships which Father Jacob faced, yet he did so with patience and humility. His life of faith and piety are the legacy which he leaves to us, his spiritual children in America, and indeed to all Christians throughout the world.

 

More can be read online OCA.ORG

 

Announcements:

 

We will have some special YOUTH events over the Summer…

  • Camp (St Sava’s)- July 26th -- Aug.1st
  • Pilgrimage to Holy Transfiguration Monastery—August 6th
  • Altar Boy Camp out – August 9-10th
  • Sunday School Kick off- September 13th, 2015

                       

A Joyous welcome to Tristan and Mary Gall united in Holy Marriage on July 19th

They welcome you all to celebrate with them praying with them in thanksgiving immediately following the Divine Liturgy today, and then this afternoon, at 2pm for a gathering of parish and family. 

 

 Please pray for Our youth as the attend Camp this week

St Sava’s Orthodox Youth Camp July 26th-August 1st

 

We are still looking for donations to help our 18 kids go to camp, we need to raise 1700$ if you are able to make a donation every little bit counts!!

 

Carpatho-Russian Church Tour

(Bus tour beginning in Erie will tour 3 Local Parishes in the Area)

Thursday, August 20th 10am-5pm

If you are interested call Phyllis at 814-864-5232

(ASAP --There are five spots to fill)

 

 

***Please come and visit our Mission and Outreach Booth at the Crawford County Fair grounds on this Saturday, August 1st from 9-5pm. The booth will open the doors for communication about the Holy Orthodox Church and the Gospel of Christ. Put on by Northeast Rural Electric, which receives 3000+ visitors. Our booth will have fresh coffee and nutrolls, and plenty of reading material. We will offer a special prayer for the lesser blessing of water at our booth at 3pm. Please stop by the booth and support your parish!

 

Altar Server Campout - August 9-10th celebrating and commemorating the Holy Martyr St Lawrence the deacon to whom our outdoor pavilion is dedicated. We will have vespers on Sunday Evening at 6pm and Divine Liturgy in the Morning at 9:30am. The boys should arrive around 5pm for set up and prep. We will have a cookout, campfire and evening activities. Following Liturgy we will offer lunch and afternoon activities. Fathers, Godfathers and Grand fathers are encouraged to join us if you are able. We will end our time at 4pm.

 

 

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Rev. Daniel Mathewson - Rector

 

July 19th, 2015        

 

Parish phone: 814-734-3801

 25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 

                                                            Christ is in Our Midst!  He is and Always shall Be!

                                                      Today we commeorate the Relics of St Seraphim of Sarov

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

Megan Clayton and Family, Melissa Baldwin, Timothy Alberti, Debbie Kirzmanich , Vernon Baldwin, Valentina Emelianow, Michael Gresh, Karen Raydo, Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Tanya Ferra, Claudia Sekel Evelyn, Cody, Casmere…  The Newly illumined Jeremiah Stump, William Shontz, Wesly Shontz… Inquirers and Catechumens  David Angelini, …. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko,… military servers…Greg Hargett….our seminarian….Tristan Gall and his fiancée Mary… Departed…John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White.

 7th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 6. Uncovering of the Relics of Ven. Seraphim of Sarov (1903). Fathers of the 1st Six Ecumenical Councils. Ven. Macrina, sister of St. Basil the Great (380). Ven. Dius, Abbot, of Antioch (ca. 430). Rt. Blv. Román, Prince of Riazan’ (1270). Ven. Paísii of the Kiev Caves (Far Caves—14th c.). Bl. Stephen (1427), King of Serbia, and his mother, St. Militsa (1405).

 

Scripture Lessons:

 Romans 15:1-7 (Epistle)

We then who are strong ought to bear with the scruples of the weak, and not to please ourselves.Let each of us please his neighbor for his good, leading to edification.For even Christ did not please Himself; but as it is written, “The reproaches of those who reproached You fell on Me.”For whatever things were written before were written for our learning, that we through the patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope.Now may the God of patience and comfort grant you to be like-minded toward one another, according to Christ Jesus,that you may with one mind and one mouth glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.Therefore receive one another, just as Christ also received us, to the glory of God.

Hebrews 13:7-16 (Epistle, Fathers)

Remember those who rule over you, who have spoken the word of God to you, whose faith follow, considering the outcome of their conduct.Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.Do not be carried about with various and strange doctrines. For it is good that the heart be established by grace, not with foods which have not profited those who have been occupied with them.We have an altar from which those who serve the tabernacle have no right to eat.For the bodies of those animals, whose blood is brought into the sanctuary by the high priest for sin, are burned outside the camp.Therefore Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people with His own blood, suffered outside the gate.Therefore let us go forth to Him, outside the camp, bearing His reproach.For here we have no continuing city, but we seek the one to come.Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name.But do not forget to do good and to share, for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.

Matthew 9:27-35 (Gospel)

When Jesus departed from there, two blind men followed Him, crying out and saying, “Son of David, have mercy on us!” And when He had come into the house, the blind men came to Him. And Jesus said to them, “Do you believe that I am able to do this?” They said to Him, “Yes, Lord.” Then He touched their eyes, saying, “According to your faith let it be to you.” And their eyes were opened. And Jesus sternly warned them, saying, “See that no one knows it.” But when they had departed, they spread the news about Him in all that country. As they went out, behold, they brought to Him a man, mute and demon-possessed. And when the demon was cast out, the mute spoke. And the multitudes marveled, saying, “It was never seen like this in Israel!” But the Pharisees said, “He casts out demons by the ruler of the demons.”

Then Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every sickness and every disease among the people.

John 17:1-13 (Gospel, Fathers)

Jesus spoke these words, lifted up His eyes to heaven, and said: “Father, the hour has come. Glorify Your Son, that Your Son also may glorify You,as You have given Him authority over all flesh, that He should give eternal life to as many as You have given Him.And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.I have glorified You on the earth. I have finished the work which You have given Me to do.And now, O Father, glorify Me together with Yourself, with the glory which I had with You before the world was.I have manifested Your name to the men whom You have given Me out of the world. They were Yours, You gave them to Me, and they have kept Your word.Now they have known that all things which You have given Me are from You.For I have given to them the words which You have given Me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came forth from You; and they have believed that You sent Me.

I pray for them. I do not pray for the world but for those whom You have given Me, for they are Yours.And all Mine are Yours, and Yours are Mine, and I am glorified in them.Now I am no longer in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to You. Holy Father, keep through Your name those whom You have given Me, that they may be one as We are.While I was with them in the world, I kept them in Your name. Those whom You gave Me I have kept; and none of them is lost except the son of perdition, that the Scripture might be fulfilled.But now I come to You, and these things I speak in the world, that they may have My joy fulfilled in themselves.

 

No one is saved alone     by Fr. Stephen Freeman

      “If anyone falls, he falls alone. But no one is saved alone.” – Alexei Khomiakov

Roughly 25 years ago I quit smoking. I never think about it now – it has become a thing of the distant past. But I can remember a period of about 10 years in which I struggled to quit. I would make up my mind, throw things away, make a clean sweep, and be back puffing away before the day was over. I felt completely frustrated with the efforts and disappointed with myself. It was not a secret addiction, everyone who saw me could see the young tobacco addict helplessly killing himself. I made jokes about it (as I usually do about almost everything). But year after year the habit continued and every attempt at quitting failed. On a couple of occasions I managed to stay quit for as much as two weeks. Collapsing after such a herculean effort is deeply shaming.

Something changed when I was approached by a faithful Christian couple after a weekend retreat. They were grateful, they said, for the ministry I had offered that weekend and wanted to do something for me. I was flattered and assured them that they didn’t need to. But they had something serious in mind. They told me that they thought my smoking hurt my ministry. I felt the blood rushing to my face as my embarrassment mounted. I felt a lecture coming on. But none came.

They said to me that they didn’t mean to cause me any embarrassment or concern, but that they wanted to offer a fast for me. One day each week they were going to fast and pray for God to give me the grace to quit. And, they added, they absolutely did not mean to put pressure on me.

I thanked them and told them how many times I had quit and failed and said, “If God can take them away, then so be it!”

And that was the end of it, or so I thought. I heard nothing more from them (they lived in a different city). I puffed away day after day with no particular concern or care for what they were doing. But about six months later, Great Lent rolled around. And, per usual, it seemed right to “give up smoking for Lent.” Most years that meant a miserable Ash Wednesday and a guilty collapse by the end of the day. But that year I quit. One day, two days, three days. It was hard. I was miserable. I was frequently angry. Day after day for the first few weeks my will would collapse. But I didn’t smoke.

As the season went forward it was like watching someone else quitting. I was doing something and had no sense of how I was doing it. That didn’t mean it was easy. I was doing something that had always been impossible and I didn’t know how.

At some point, I remembered the couple. I couldn’t remember their names. They were just two more faces from a retreat who made an audacious promise. I never saw them again. I couldn’t remember whom to write in order to thank them. So I gave thanks to God and continue to do so.

That experience was probably my first initiation into the mystery of salvation. We are not saved alone. God delights in communion. He delights in sharing His life.

Almost every version of grace and salvation I had heard up until that time, seemed quite private and was incorrectly called “personal.” Anything that is truly personal is not at allprivate. Personal existence means to exist in the image of the Divine Persons of the Holy Trinity. The Father does not exist apart from the Son and the Holy Spirit (the name “Father” would have no meaning in such an existence). The same is true of the other Persons within the Trinity. And if this is true of the Divine Persons, how much more must it be true for us?

And if our existence is not apart from others, then how could our salvation be any different? My experience was not without effort. But neither was it the result of my effort. Some couple, whose names I had forgotten, offered up one day a week as a sacrifice and offering for my sake. Strangers quit smoking for me.

I have read descriptions from the lives of Holy Elders in which some monk labored long in fastings and prayers, in vigils and tears, praying for the salvation of the whole human race. In a few extraordinary descriptions, those prayers were offered, not with a generic sense of “everybody,” but with an overwhelming awareness of the whole human race, person by person. It is a mystical participation in the Cross of Christ.

We tell the stories of our lives centered primarily in ourselves. This happened. I read this book. I met this man. I…I…I…I. All the while some stranger prays from the depths of Hades in union with Christ for us and for our salvation. I do not know how I became Orthodox. I thought about it for twenty years. I loved it from a distance and was repelled by it up close. It was just the same when I dealt with God. Theology is wonderful from a distance.

We are not saved alone. Salvation is the will of God for everyone and everything (2 Peter 3:9). And many have united themselves already to the will of God. And like the will of God, they become part of our salvation.

“It is not good for man to be alone.” “Good” is not something that can be had “alone.” Thank God we are saved from it.

Announcements:

 We will have some special YOUTH events over the Summer…

  •             Camp (St Sava’s)- July 26th -- Aug.1st
  • Pilgrimage to Holy Transfiguration Monastery—August 6th  
  • Altar Boy Camp out – August 9-10th
  • Sunday School Kick off- September 13th, 2015

 

St Sava’s Orthodox Youth Camp July 26th-August 1st

 We are still looking for donations to help our 19 kids go to camp, we need to raise 1700$ if you are able to make a donation every little bit counts!!

 

Carpatho-Russian Church Tour

(Bus tour beginning in Erie will tour 3 Local Parishes in the Area)

Thursday, August 20th 10am-5pm

If you are interested call Phyllis at 814-864-5232

(ASAP --There are five spots to fill)

---Pray for Fr. Daniel And Mat. Gail (Our Delegate) as they attend the All American Council July 20th -24th 2015 Atlanta, Georgia. Many decisions about the future of the OCA will be made and discussed. Pray with us that the Lord will manifest His will in our sacred gathering.

 

---A Reception for Tristan and Mary will be held Next Sunday, July 26th 2015 in the parish hall beginning at 2pm. There will be a Molieben Service of Thanksgiving for the couple following Divine Liturgy.

 

--Parish Council Meeting August 12th, 2015

 

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Rev. Daniel Mathewson - Rector                   July 12, 2015         

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801

 25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 

Christ is in Our Midst!  He is and Always shall Be!

 Martyrs Proclus and Hilary of Anacyra

A Blessed Welcome to our Dean the Very Reverend Joseph Wargo!

(As Fr. Daniel is on Vacation)

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

Megan Clayton and Family, Melissa Baldwin, Timothy Alberti, Debbie Kirzmanich , Vernon Baldwin, Valentina Emelianow, Michael Gresh, Karen Raydo, Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Tanya Ferra, Claudia Sekel Evelyn, Cody, Casmere…  The Newly illumined Jeremiah Stump, William Shontz, Wesly Shontz… Inquirers and Catechumens  David Angelini, …. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko,… military servers…Greg Hargett….our seminarian….Tristan Gall and his fiancée Mary… Departed…John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White.

 6th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 5. Martyrs Proclus and Hilary of Ancyra (2nd c.). Ven. Michael of Maleinus (962). Martyrs Theodore and his son, John, of Kiev (983). Ven. Arseny of Novgorod, Fool-for-Christ (1570). Ven. Simon, Abbot of Volomsk (1641). Martyr Golinduc (in Baptism Mary), of Persia (591). Ven. John (998) and Gabriel, of the Holy Mountain (Georgian). Icon of the Most-holy Theotokos, “THE THREE HANDS.” (8th c.).

 Scripture Lessons:

 Romans 12:6-14 (Epistle)

Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith; or ministry, let us use it in our ministering; he who teaches, in teaching; he who exhorts, in exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness. Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good. Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another; not lagging in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer; distributing to the needs of the saints, given to hospitality. Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse.

 Matthew 9:1-8 (Gospel)

So He got into a boat, crossed over, and came to His own city.Then behold, they brought to Him a paralytic lying on a bed. When Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paralytic, “Son, be of good cheer; your sins are forgiven you.”And at once some of the scribes said within themselves, “This Man blasphemes!”But Jesus, knowing their thoughts, said, “Why do you think evil in your hearts?For which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven you,’ or to say, ‘Arise and walk’?

But that you may know that the Son of Man has power on earth to forgive sins – then He said to the paralytic, “Arise, take up your bed, and go to your house.” And he arose and departed to his house. Now when the multitudes saw it, they marveled and glorified God, who had given such power to men.

 The saints were people like all of us. Many of them came out of great sins, but by repentance(change) they attained the Kingdom of Heaven. And everyone who comes there comes through repentance(constant change), which the merciful Lord has given us through His sufferings. 

(St. Silouan the Athonite, Writings, XII.10)

Through the Prayers of Our Holy Fathers

By Fr. Stephen Freeman 

It is a phrase that is heard frequently in Orthodox services: “Through the prayers of our holy fathers, have mercy on us and save us!” The meaning of that phrase is enlarged and enlightened in the writings of the Elder Sophrony. The following excerpt is from his book, St. Silouan the Athonite.

                  Prayer for the whole world, for all Adam, in many instances distracts the monk from putting himself at the service of individuals. One may question whether this withdrawing from individual service means refusal of the concrete for the sake of the abstract? Not at all, for the whole Adam is not an abstraction but the most concrete fullness of the human being.

                  The ontological unity of humanity is such that every separate individual overcoming evil in himself inflicts such a defeat on cosmic evil that its consequences have a beneficial effect on the destinies of the whole world. On the other hand, the nature of cosmic evil is such that, vanquished in certain human hypostases [persons] it suffers a defeat the significance and extent of which are quite disproportionate to the number of individuals concerned.

                  A single saint is an extraordinarily precious phenomenon for all mankind. By the mere fact of their existence – unknown, maybe, to the world but known to God – the saints draw down on the world, on all humanity, a great benediction from God. The Staretz [St. Silouan] writes:

                  ‘Because of these people, I believe the Lord preserves the world, for they are precious in His sight, and God always listens to His humble servants and we are all of us all right because of their prayers.’

                  ‘Prayer keeps the world alive and when prayer fails, the world will perish…”Nowadays,” perhaps you will say, “there are no more monks like that to pray for the whole world.” But I tell you that when there are no more men of prayer on earth, the world will come to an end and great disasters will befall. They have already started.’

                  The saints live by the love of Christ. This love is Divine strength, which created, and now upholds, the world, and this is why their prayer is so pregnant with meaning. St. Barsanuphius, for instance, records that in his time the prayers of three men preserved mankind from catastrophe. Thanks to these saints – whom the world does not know of – the course of historical, even of cosmic events, is changed. So then, every saint is a phenomenon of cosmic character, whose significance passes beyond the bounds of earthly history into the sphere of eternity. The saints are the salt of the earth, its raison d’etre.  They are the fruit that preserve the earth. But when the earth ceases to produce saints, the strength that safeguards it from catastrophe will fail.

 

                  Tonight, before you go to bed, pray: “O Lord, through the prayers of our holy fathers, have mercy on us and save us!” And be grateful.

Announcements:

 We will have some special YOUTH events over the Summer… 

  • Camp (St Sava’s)- July 26th -- Aug.1st
  • Pilgrimage to Holy Transfiguration Monastery—August 6th
  • Altar Boy Camp out – August 9-10th
  • Sunday School Kick off- September 13th, 2015

 

 St Sava’s Orthodox Youth Camp July 26th-August 1st

 

(If you have not sent in your form you will need to do so as soon as possible as they are over due!)

**Also were are still looking for donations to help our 19 kids go to camp, we need to raise 1700$ if you are able to make a donation every little bit counts!!

 OUR ANNUAL CHICKEN DINNER WILL BE HELD NEXT  

SUNDAY, JULY 19th, 2015

 

PLEASE VOLUNTEER TO HELP…

See sign up sheet in the hall for more details

 

See Lisa for set up…

See Marge or Jane for food prep…

 

This year Dinners will include a dessert and drink!

$12.00 for adults and $5.00 for 10 and under.

Ala Carte items: Halushki, Halupki, etc. $6.00

Basket raffle and much more…Invite a friend!

 

 ---All American Council July 20th -24th 2015 Atlanta, Georgia (Main Hotel is sold out!) go to oca.org for more info.

 ---A Reception for Tristan and Mary will be held on Sunday, July 26th 2015 in the parish hall beginning at 2pm.

 --Parish Council Meeting August 12th, 2015

 

When God wants to have mercy on someone, He inspires someone else to pray for him, and He helps in this prayer. 

(St. Silouan the Athonite, Writings, XX.9)

 

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Rev. Daniel Mathewson - Rector

 

July 5th, 2015        

 

Parish phone: 814-734-3801

 

25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 

 

www.orthodoxcrossingville.org

 

                               Christ is in Our Midst!  He is and Always shall Be!

 

The Relics of the venerable Sergius

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

Megan Clayton and Family, Melissa Baldwin, Timothy Alberti, Debbie Kirzmanich , Vernon Baldwin, Valentina Emelianow, Michael Gresh, Karen Raydo, Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Tanya Ferra, Claudia Sekel Evelyn, Cody, Casmere…  The Newly illumined Jeremiah Stump, William Shontz, Wesly Shontz… Inquirers and Catechumens  David Angelini, …. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko,… military servers…Greg Hargett….our seminarian….Tristan Gall and his fiancée Mary… Departed…John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White.

 

"As it is impossible to verbally describe the sweetness of honey to one who has never tasted honey, so the goodness of God cannot be clearly communicated by way of teaching if we ourselves are not able to penetrate into the goodness of the Lord by our own experience. "

(St. Basil the Great, Conversations on the Psalms, 29)

 

 5th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 4. Ven. Athanasius, Founder of the Great Lavra and Cœnobitic Monasticism on Mt. Athos, and his six disciples (1000). Uncovering of the Relics of Ven. Sergius (Sérgii) of Rádonezh (1422). Martyr Anna at Rome (304) and Martyr Cyrilla, of Cyrene in Libya, a widow (304). Ven. Lampadus of Hirenopolis (10th c.). Hieromartyr Cyprian of Mt. Athos (1679).

 

 

Scripture Lessons:

 

Galatians 5:22-6:2 (Epistle, either Saint)

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another. Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted. Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.

 

Romans 10:1-10 (Epistle)

Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is that they may be saved. For I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge. For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and seeking to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted to the righteousness of God. For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes. For Moses writes about the righteousness which is of the law, “The man who does those things shall live by them.” But the righteousness of faith speaks in this way, “Do not say in your heart, ‘Who will ascend into heaven?’ “ (that is, to bring Christ down from above) or, “ ‘Who will descend into the abyss?’ “ (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead). But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith which we preach): that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

 

Luke 6:17-23 (Gospel, either Saint)

And He came down with them and stood on a level place with a crowd of His disciples and a great multitude of people from all Judea and Jerusalem, and from the seacoast of Tyre and Sidon, who came to hear Him and be healed of their diseases, as well as those who were tormented with unclean spirits. And they were healed. And the whole multitude sought to touch Him, for power went out from Him and healed them all. Then He lifted up His eyes toward His disciples, and said: Blessed are you poor, For yours is the kingdom of God. Blessed are you who hunger now, For you shall be filled. Blessed are you who weep now, For you shall laugh. Blessed are you when men hate you, And when they exclude you, And revile you, and cast out your name as evil, For the Son of Man’s sake. Rejoice in that day and leap for joy! For indeed your reward is great in heaven, For in like manner their fathers did to the prophets.

 

Matthew 8:28-9:1 (Gospel)

When He had come to the other side, to the country of the Gergesenes, there met Him two demon-possessed men, coming out of the tombs, exceedingly fierce, so that no one could pass that way.And suddenly they cried out, saying, “What have we to do with You, Jesus, You Son of God? Have You come here to torment us before the time?”Now a good way off from them there was a herd of many swine feeding.So the demons begged Him, saying, “If You cast us out, permit us to go away into the herd of swine.”And He said to them, “Go.” So when they had come out, they went into the herd of swine. And suddenly the whole herd of swine ran violently down the steep place into the sea, and perished in the water.Then those who kept them fled; and they went away into the city and told everything, including what had happened to the demon-possessed men.And behold, the whole city came out to meet Jesus. And when they saw Him, they begged Him to depart from their region.So He got into a boat, crossed over, and came to His own city.


“If you want to serve God, prepare your heart not for food, not for drink, not for rest, not for ease, but for suffering, so that you may endure all temptations, trouble and sorrow. Prepare for severities, fasts, spiritual struggles and many afflictions, for “by many afflictions is it appointed to us to enter the Kingdom of Heaven” (Acts 14,22); ‘The Heavenly Kingdom is taken by force, and the who use force seize it.’ (Matt 11:12)

+ St. Sergius of Radonezh, Life, 10

 

Announcements:

 

We will have some special YOUTH events over the Summer…

 

  • Altar Boy Camp out rescheduled for August 9th-10th
  • Pirates game Monday, July 6th (See flier on BB in Hall)
  • Camp (St Sava’s)- July 26th -- Aug.1st
  • Pilgrimage to Holy Transfiguration Monastery—August 6th
  • Sunday School Kick off- September 13th, 2015

 

St Sava’s Orthodox Youth Camp July 26th-August 1st

 

 

OUR ANNUAL CHICKEN DINNER WILL BE HELD ON

SUNDAY, JULY 19th, 2015

 

IN TWO WEEKS!!!!

 

PLEASE VOLUNTEER TO HELP…

(There is a sign up sheets in the hall)

 

See Lisa for set up…

See Marge or Jane for food prep…

 

This year Dinners will include a dessert and drink!

$12.00 for adults and $5.00 for 10 and under.

Ala Carte items: Halushki, Halupki, etc. $6.00

Basket raffle and much more…Invite a friend!

 

---All American Council July 20th -24th 2015 Atlanta, Georgia (Main Hotel is sold out!) go to oca.org for more info.

 

---Reception for Tristan and Mary will be held on Sunday, July 26th 2015 in the parish hall beginning at 2pm.

 

--Parish Council Meeting this Wednesday July 8th, 6pm (Daily Vespers 5:30p)

 

-Please remember in your prayers Megan Clayton and family in your prayers

 

-Please remember Melissa Baldwin as she recovers from surgery.

 

If a man has no worries about himself at all for the sake of love toward God and the working of good deeds, knowing that God is taking care of him, this is a true and wise hope. But if a man takes care of his own business and turns to God in prayer only when misfortunes come upon him, which are beyond his power, and then he begins to hope in God, such a hope is vain and false. A true hope seeks only the Kingdom of God... the heart can have no peace until it obtains such a hope. This hope pacifies the heart and produces joy within it. 
(St. Seraphim of Sarov, Works, 4)

 

 Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Rev. Daniel Mathewson                  Rector

 June 28th , 2015        

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801

 25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 www.orthodoxcrossingville.org

 

                      Christ is in Our Midst!  He is and Always shall Be!

 

Saints Cyrus and John

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

Megan Clayton and Family, Melissa Baldwin, Timothy Alberti, Debbie Kirzmanich , Vernon Baldwin, Valentina Emelianow, Michael Gresh, Karen Raydo, Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Tanya Ferra, Claudia Sekel Evelyn, Cody, Casmere…  The Newly illumined Jeremiah Stump, William Shontz, Wesly Shontz… Inquirers and Catechumens  David Angelini, …. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko,… military servers…Greg Hargett….our seminarian….Tristan Gall and his fiancée Mary… Departed…John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White.

 4th SUNDAY After Pentecost— Tone 3. Sts. Cyrus and John Holy, Ven. Sergius and Herman of Valaam. End of the Sts. Peter and Paul Fast.

 

Announcements:

 

We will have some special YOUTH events over the Summer…

 

  • Altar Boy Camp out CANCELLED- (reschedule for later in Summer)
  • Pirates game Monday, July 6th (See flier on BB in Hall)
  • Camp (St Sava’s)- July 26th -- Aug.1st
  • Pilgrimage to Holy Transfiguration Monastery—August 6th
  • Sunday School Kick off- September 13th, 2015

 

PIRATES GAME: TODAY IS THE FINAL DEADLINE IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO ATTEND ON MONDAY JULY 6th -- PLEASE LET FR. DANIEL KNOW TODAY!!

 

St Sava’s Orthodox Youth Camp July 26th-August 1st

(If you have not sent in your form you will need to do so as soon as possible as they are over due!)

 

TODAY THE LADIES ALTAR SOCIETY WILL MEET TODAY DURING COFEE HOUR

 

OUR ANNUAL CHICKEN DINNER WILL BE HELD ON

SUNDAY, JULY 19th, 2015

 

PLEASE VOLUNTEER TO HELP…

(There is a sign up sheet in the hall)

 

See Lisa for set up…

See Marge or Jane for food prep…

 

This year Dinners will include a dessert and drink!

$12.00 for adults and $5.00 for 10 and under.

Ala Carte items: Halushki, Halupki, etc. $6.00

Basket raffle and much more…Invite a friend!

 Other important announcments and reminders:

---All American Council July 20th -24th 2015 Atlanta, Georgia (Main Hotel is sold out!) go to oca.org for more info.

 ---Reception for Tristan and Mary will be held on Sunday, July 26th 2015 in the parish hall beginning at 2pm.

 --Parish Council Meeting July 8th, 6pm

 -Please remember in your prayers Megan Clayton and family as she has lost her Brother Mark in a fatal accident. May his memory be eternal!

 -Please remember Melissa Baldwin as she had emergency surgery this week and is recovering.


 

 

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Rev. Daniel Mathewson –Rector

 June 7th, 2015         

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801

25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

            Christ is in Our Midst!  He is and Always shall Be!

 All Saints

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

Timothy Alberti, Debbie  Kirzmanich , Vernon Baldwin, Valentina Emelianow, Michael Gresh, Karen Raydo, , Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Tanya Ferra, Claudia Sekel Evelyn… The Newly illumined Jeremiah Stump, William Shontz, Wesly Shontz… Inquirers and Catechumens  David Angelini, …. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko,… military servers…Greg Hargett….our seminarian….Tristan Gall and his fiancée Mary… Departed…John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White.

 8th SUNDAY OF PASCHA — Tone 7. HOLY PENTECOST: FEAST OF THE HOLY TRINITY. Translation of the Relics of the Greatmartyr Theodore Stratelates (319). St. Theodore, Bishop of Rostov and Suzdal’ (1023). Finding of the Relics of Ss. Basil and Constantine, Princes of Yaroslavl’ (13th c.). St. Ephraim, Patriarch of Antioch (545). Ven. Zosimas of Phœnicia (Syria—6th c.). Glorification of St. John of Kronstadt (1990).

 Scripture Lessons:

 Hebrews 11:33-12:2 (Epistle)

 (W)ho through faith subdued kingdoms, worked righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions,quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, became valiant in battle, turned to flight the armies of the aliens.Women received their dead raised to life again. Others were tortured, not accepting deliverance, that they might obtain a better resurrection.Still others had trial of mockings and scourgings, yes, and of chains and imprisonment.They were stoned, they were sawn in two, were tempted, were slain with the sword. They wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins, being destitute, afflicted, tormented –of whom the world was not worthy. They wandered in deserts and mountains, in dens and caves of the earth. And all these, having obtained a good testimony through faith, did not receive the promise, God having provided something better for us, that they should not be made perfect apart from us. Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Matthew 10:32-33, 37-38, 19:27-30 (Gospel)

 Therefore whoever confesses Me before men, him I will also confess before My Father who is in heaven.But whoever denies Me before men, him I will also deny before My Father who is in heaven.He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me.And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me.

Then Peter answered and said to Him, “See, we have left all and followed You. Therefore what shall we have?”  So Jesus said to them, “Assuredly I say to you, that in the regeneration, when the Son of Man sits on the throne of His glory, you who have followed Me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands, for My name’s sake, shall receive a hundredfold, and inherit eternal life. But many who are first will be last, and the last first.

           

Today’s Music

 Tone 8            Troparion      (Resurrection)

 Thou didst descend from on high, O Merciful One!

Thou didst accept the three day burial

to free us from our sufferings!//

O Lord, our Life and Resurrection, glory to thee!

 

Tone 4            Troparion       (from the Pentecostarion)

 As with fine porphyry and royal purple,

Thy Church has been adorned with Thy martyrs’ blood shed through-out all the world.

She cries to Thee, O Christ God:

Send down Thy bounties on Thy people,//

grant peace to Thy habitation and great mercy to our souls!

 

 Tone 8            Kontakion     (from the Pentecostarion)

 The universe offers Thee the God-bearing Martyrs

as the first fruits of creation, O Lord and Creator.

By their prayers keep Thy Church, Thy habitation, in abiding peace//

through the Theotokos, O most Merciful One!

 

Words of encouragement from the saints

 “The soul that loves God has its rest in God and in God alone. In all the paths that men walk in in the world, they do not attain peace until they draw nigh to hope in God.” 

--St. Isaac the Syrian, Homily 56, 89

 

“God loves us more than a father, mother, friend, or any else could love, and even more than we are able to love ourselves.”

- St. John Chrysostom

 

 The Lord loves all people, but He loves those who seek Him even more. To his chosen ones the Lord gives such great grace that for love they forsake the whole earth, the whole world, and their souls burn with desire that all people might be saved and see the glory of the Lord. 

- St. Silouan the Athonite, Writings, IX.8

 

“How mistaken are those people who seek happiness outside of themselves, in foreign lands and journeys, in riches and glory, in great possessions and pleasures, in diversions and vain things, which have a bitter end! In the same thing to construct the tower of happiness outside of ourselves as it is to build a house in a place that is consistently shaken by earthquakes. Happiness is found within ourselves, and blessed is the man who has understood this. Happiness is a pure heart, for such a heart becomes the throne of God. Thus says Christ of those who have pure hearts: "I will visit them, and will walk in them, and I will be a God to them, and they will be my people." (II Cor. 6:16) What can be lacking to them? Nothing, nothing at all! For they have the greatest good in their hearts: God Himself! 

- St. Nektarios of Aegina, Path to Happiness

 

Truth is not a thought, not a word, not a relationship between things, not a law. Truth is a Person. It is a Being which exceeds all beings and gives life to all. If you seek truth with love and for the sake of love, she will reveal the light of His face to you inasmuch as you are able to bear it without being burned. 
- St. Nicholas of Serbia, Thoughts on Good and Evil

 

It is only necessary to seek one thing: to be with Jesus. The man who remains with Jesus is rich, even if he is poor with regard to material things. Who ever desires the earthly more than the heavenly loses both the earthly and the heavenly. But whoever seeks the heavenly is Lord of the whole world. 
- St. Ignatius Brianchaninov, Patericon

Parish Announcements:

 **Today is Last Day of Sunday Church School – Picnic following Liturgy…AND

   We will have some special YOUTH events over the Summer…

  •  Missions Trip June 15th – 19th
  • Pirates game Monday, July 6th (See flier on BB in Hall)
  • Camp (St Sava’s)- July 26th -- Aug.1st
  • Pilgrimage to Holy Transfiguration Monastery—August 5th- 6th
  • Sunday School Kick off- September 13th, 2015

 If you would like to attend the Missions Trip on June 15th-19th in West Brownesville PA. please talk with Fr. Daniel if you plan to attend. Presently there are 23 youth and adults attending from the Archdiocese and the Diocese of the Midwest!

 --St Sava’s Orthodox Youth Camp July 26th-August 1st

 (Please get your camp form to Fr. Daniel to sign and stamp.)

 

 OUR ANNUAL CHICKEN DINNER WILL BE HELD ON JULY 19th , 2015

 PLEASE VOLUNTEER TO HELP…

 See Lisa for set up…

See Marge or Jane for food prep…

 

---All American Council July 20th -24th 2015 Atlanta, Georgia (Main Hotel is sold out!) go to oca.org for more info.

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Rev. Daniel Mathewson –Rector

 May 31st, 2015        

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801

25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 

www.orthodoxcrossingville.org

 

Christ is in Our Midst! He is and Always shall Be!

 

Feast of the Holy Trinity

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

Debbie Kirzmanich , Vernon Baldwin, Valentina Emelianow, Michael Gresh, Karen Raydo, , Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Timothy Alberti, Tanya Ferra, Claudia Sekel Evelyn…  The Newly illumined Jeremiah Stump, William Shontz, Wesly Shontz… Inquirers and Catechumens  David Angelini, …. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko,… military servers…Greg Hargett….our seminarian….Tristan Gall and his fiancée Mary… Departed…John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White.

Tone 8    Troparion             

Blessed are You, O Christ Our God;

For You have shown the fishermen as most wise

By sending down on them the Holy Spirit

And through them catching the world in your net.//

Glory to you, O good God who loves mankind!

 

Tone 4   Kontakion 

When He came down and confused the tongues, the Most High divided the nations;

But when He distributed the tongues of fire, He called all people to unity.//

Therefore, with one voice we glorify the most Holy Spirit.

 

Instead of the Trisagion we sing:

As many has have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. Alleluia.

 

                 

8th SUNDAY OF PASCHA — Tone 7. HOLY PENTECOST: FEAST OF THE HOLY TRINITY. Translation of the Relics of the Greatmartyr Theodore Stratelates (319). St. Theodore, Bishop of Rostov and Suzdal’ (1023). Finding of the Relics of Ss. Basil and Constantine, Princes of Yaroslavl’ (13th c.). St. Ephraim, Patriarch of Antioch (545). Ven. Zosimas of Phœnicia (Syria—6th c.). Glorification of St. John of Kronstadt (1990).

 

Acts 2:1-11 (Epistle)

When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting.Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them.And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.And there were dwelling in Jerusalem Jews, devout men, from every nation under heaven.And when this sound occurred, the multitude came together, and were confused, because everyone heard them speak in his own language.Then they were all amazed and marveled, saying to one another, “Look, are not all these who speak Galileans?And how is it that we hear, each in our own language in which we were born?  Parthians and Medes and Elamites, those dwelling in Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia,Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya adjoining Cyrene, visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes,Cretans and Arabs – we hear them speaking in our own tongues the wonderful works of God.


John 7:37-52, 8:12 (Gospel)

On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink.He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.But this He spoke concerning the Spirit, whom those believing in Him would receive; for the Holy Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.Therefore many from the crowd, when they heard this saying, said, “Truly this is the Prophet.”Others said, “This is the Christ.” But some said, “Will the Christ come out of Galilee?Has not the Scripture said that the Christ comes from the seed of David and from the town of Bethlehem, where David was? So there was a division among the people because of Him.Now some of them wanted to take Him, but no one laid hands on Him.Then the officers came to the chief priests and Pharisees, who said to them, “Why have you not brought Him?”The officers answered, “No man ever spoke like this Man!”

Then the Pharisees answered them, “Are you also deceived?Have any of the rulers or the Pharisees believed in Him?  But this crowd that does not know the law is accursed.Nicodemus (he who came to Jesus by night, being one of them) said to them,Does our law judge a man before it hears him and knows what he is doing?They answered and said to him, “Are you also from Galilee? Search and look, for no prophet has arisen out of Galilee.”Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.”

 

                 

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Rev. Daniel Mathewson –Rector

 May 30th, 2015        

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801

25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 

www.orthodoxcrossingville.org

 

Christ is in Our Midst! He is and Always shall Be!

 

Feast of the Holy Trinity

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

Debbie Kirzmanich , Vernon Baldwin, Valentina Emelianow, Michael Gresh, Karen Raydo, , Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Timothy Alberti, Tanya Ferra, Claudia Sekel Evelyn…  The Newly illumined Jeremiah Stump, William Shontz, Wesly Shontz… Inquirers and Catechumens  David Angelini, …. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko,… military servers…Greg Hargett….our seminarian….Tristan Gall and his fiancée Mary… Departed…John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White.

Tone 8    Troparion             

Blessed are You, O Christ Our God;

For You have shown the fishermen as most wise

By sending down on them the Holy Spirit

And through them catching the world in your net.//

Glory to you, O good God who loves mankind!

 

Tone 4   Kontakion 

When He came down and confused the tongues, the Most High divided the nations;

But when He distributed the tongues of fire, He called all people to unity.//

Therefore, with one voice we glorify the most Holy Spirit.

 

Instead of the Trisagion we sing:

As many has have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. Alleluia.

 

                 

8th SUNDAY OF PASCHA — Tone 7. HOLY PENTECOST: FEAST OF THE HOLY TRINITY. Translation of the Relics of the Greatmartyr Theodore Stratelates (319). St. Theodore, Bishop of Rostov and Suzdal’ (1023). Finding of the Relics of Ss. Basil and Constantine, Princes of Yaroslavl’ (13th c.). St. Ephraim, Patriarch of Antioch (545). Ven. Zosimas of Phœnicia (Syria—6th c.). Glorification of St. John of Kronstadt (1990).

 

Acts 2:1-11 (Epistle)

When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting.Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them.And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.And there were dwelling in Jerusalem Jews, devout men, from every nation under heaven.And when this sound occurred, the multitude came together, and were confused, because everyone heard them speak in his own language.Then they were all amazed and marveled, saying to one another, “Look, are not all these who speak Galileans?And how is it that we hear, each in our own language in which we were born?  Parthians and Medes and Elamites, those dwelling in Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia,Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya adjoining Cyrene, visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes,Cretans and Arabs – we hear them speaking in our own tongues the wonderful works of God.


John 7:37-52, 8:12 (Gospel)

On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink.He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.But this He spoke concerning the Spirit, whom those believing in Him would receive; for the Holy Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.Therefore many from the crowd, when they heard this saying, said, “Truly this is the Prophet.”Others said, “This is the Christ.” But some said, “Will the Christ come out of Galilee?Has not the Scripture said that the Christ comes from the seed of David and from the town of Bethlehem, where David was? So there was a division among the people because of Him.Now some of them wanted to take Him, but no one laid hands on Him.Then the officers came to the chief priests and Pharisees, who said to them, “Why have you not brought Him?”The officers answered, “No man ever spoke like this Man!”

Then the Pharisees answered them, “Are you also deceived?Have any of the rulers or the Pharisees believed in Him?  But this crowd that does not know the law is accursed.Nicodemus (he who came to Jesus by night, being one of them) said to them,Does our law judge a man before it hears him and knows what he is doing?They answered and said to him, “Are you also from Galilee? Search and look, for no prophet has arisen out of Galilee.”Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.”

 

                 

 

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Rev. Daniel Mathewson –Rector

 

May 24th, 2015        

 

Parish phone: 814-734-3801

25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 www.orthodoxcrossingville.org

 Christ is Risen!   Truly He is risen!

 SUNDAY OF THE Holy Fathers of the 1st Council

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

Sebastian Hinkler, Debbie  Kirzmanich , Vernon Baldwin Alice Suscheck, Valentina Emelianow, Michael Gresh, Karen Raydo, , Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Timothy Alberti, Tanya Ferra, Claudia Sekel Evelyn… The Newly illumined Jeremiah Stump, William Shontz, Wesly Shontz… Inquirers and Catechumens  David Angelini, …. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko,… military servers…Greg Hargett….our seminarian….Tristan Gall and his fiancée Mary… Departed…John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White.

Tone 6    Troparion              (Resurrection)

The Angelic Powers were at Thy tomb;

the guards became as dead men.

Mary stood by Thy grave,

seeking Thy most pure body.

Thou didst capture hell not being tempted by it.

Thou didst come to the Virgin, granting life.//

O Lord, Who didst rise from the dead, glory to Thee. 

 

Tone 4   Troparion  (Ascension)

Thou hast ascended in glory, O Christ our God,

granting joy to Thy Disciples by the promise of the Holy Spirit.

Through the blessing they were assured,

that Thou art the Son of God,//

the Redeemer of the world!

 

Tone 8    Troparion              (Fathers)

Thou art most glorious, O Christ our God,

Who hast established the Holy Fathers as lights on the earth.

Through them Thou hast guided us to the true Faith.//

O greatly compassionate One, glory to Thee!

 

Tone 8    Kontakion             (Fathers)

The Apostles’ preaching and the Fathers’ doctrines have established one

Faith for the Church.

Adorned with the robe of truth, woven from heavenly theology,//

It defines and glorifies the great mystery of piety.

 

                  Tone 6    Kontakion                               (Ascension)

When Thou hadst fulfilled the dispensation for our sake,

and didst unite earth to heaven:

Thou didst ascend in glory, O Christ our God,

not being parted from those who love Thee,

but remaining with them and crying://

“I am with you, and there is no one against you!”

 7th SUNDAY OF PASCHA — Tone 6. Holy Fathers of the First Ecumenical Council. Afterfeast of Ascension. Ven. Simeon the Stylite (the Younger) of the Wonderful Mountain (596). Ven. Nikita the Stylite, Wonderworker of Pereyaslavl’—Zalesskii (786). Martyrs Meletius Stratelates, Stephen, John, and 1,218 soldiers, with women and children, including Serapion the Egyptian, Callinicus the Magician, Theodore, Faustus, the women: Marciana, Susanna, and Palladia, two children: Cyriacus and Christian, and twelve Tribunes—Faustus, Festus, Marcellus, Theodore, Meletius, Sergius, Marcellinus, Felix, Photinus, Theodoriscus, Mercurius, and Didymus, all of whom suffered in Galatia (138-161). St. Vincent of Lérins.

 Acts 20:16-18, 28-36 (Epistle)

For Paul had decided to sail past Ephesus, so that he would not have to spend time in Asia; for he was hurrying to be at Jerusalem, if possible, on the Day of Pentecost. From Miletus he sent to Ephesus and called for the elders of the church. And when they had come to him, he said to them: “You know, from the first day that I came to Asia, in what manner I always lived among you, Therefore take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood.

For I know this, that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock. Also from among yourselves men will rise up, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after themselves. Therefore watch, and remember that for three years I did not cease to warn everyone night and day with tears. So now, brethren, I commend you to God and to the word of His grace, which is able to build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified. I have coveted no one’s silver or gold or apparel. Yes, you yourselves know that these hands have provided for my necessities, and for those who were with me. I have shown you in every way, by laboring like this, that you must support the weak. And remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’ And when he had said these things, he knelt down and prayed with them all.

John 17:1-13 (Gospel)

Jesus spoke these words, lifted up His eyes to heaven, and said: “Father, the hour has come. Glorify Your Son, that Your Son also may glorify You,as You have given Him authority over all flesh, that He should give eternal life to as many as You have given Him.And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.I have glorified You on the earth. I have finished the work which You have given Me to do.And now, O Father, glorify Me together with Yourself, with the glory which I had with You before the world was.I have manifested Your name to the men whom You have given Me out of the world. They were Yours, You gave them to Me, and they have kept Your word.Now they have known that all things which You have given Me are from You.For I have given to them the words which You have given Me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came forth from You; and they have believed that You sent Me.I pray for them. I do not pray for the world but for those whom You have given Me, for they are Yours.And all Mine are Yours, and Yours are Mine, and I am glorified in them.Now I am no longer in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to You. Holy Father, keep through Your name those whom You have given Me, that they may be one as We are.While I was with them in the world, I kept them in Your name. Those whom You gave Me I have kept; and none of them is lost except the son of perdition, that the Scripture might be fulfilled.But now I come to You, and these things I speak in the world, that they may have My joy fulfilled in themselves.

 

Announcements:

 Thank God for all of you who helped make our Rummage Sale a success…There are still items and baked goods for sale today. We would like help tearing down and cleaning up if you can help today.

 --Sunday June 7th – Last Day of Sunday Church School – Picnic following Liturgy

--Missions Trip- June 15th-19th in West Brownesville PA. See Fr. Daniel for more details.

--St Sava’s Orthodox Youth Camp July 26th-August 1st (Please get your camp form to Fr. Daniel to sign and stamp.)

---All American Council July 20th -24th 2015 Atlanta, Georgia

 Financial Report: January- Income: $12857.27 Expenses: $4550.17 February- Income: $4803.50 Expenses: $9502.03 March- Income: $8829.00 Expenses: $8456.79

Year Ending 2014: Income $104,631.17 Expenses: $107,260.53

 

The Cruciform Human   Fr. Stephen Freeman 

                  In my March lecture in San Francisco, I made an assertion that is worth isolating for an article. That assertion is that we are created in the image of the Crucified Christ, and that this isessential in understanding what it means to be human. I have been asked where I got such an idea. The most simple answer is: the Scriptures.

                  Arguably, the first reference to the Crucified Christ occurs in Rev. 13:5.

All who dwell on the earth will worship [the Beast], whose names have not been written in the Book of Life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. (Rev 13:8)

                  The Lamb, slain from the foundation of the cosmos (τοῦ ἐσφαγμένου ἀπὸ καταβολῆς κόσμου), is St. John’s reference to the pre-existent Christ. This is easily familiar from his description in the gospel:

                  In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God and the Word was God.  He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. (Joh 1:2-3)

                  However, in Revelation, the Word who exists before all of creation (through whom all things were made) is depicted as the slain Lamb. It is startling in what it suggests. Christ is not simply the One who will be incarnate in history and be slain for the salvation of the world, but is already the One who is slain even before the world is created.

                  Those who are married to literalism should listen quietly. This is obviously not a claim that Christ was somehow already crucified in time before He was crucified in time. Rather, it is a claim concerning the timeless Christ. The Crucifixion is not a distortion of the eternal Word of God, but a revelation of the truth of the eternal Word of God.

                  In Genesis 2, we have the story of the creation of woman. In it, God causes a deep sleep to come on the man, and He removes a rib from the man’s side, forms the woman and closes the man’s side. The Fathers consistently saw in this an image of the wounding of Christ’s side on the Cross, from which flowed blood and water (Eucharist and Baptism), being the birth of His bride, the Church. It is deeply part of the imagery of Christ as the Bridegroom,

and the Church as His Bride.

                  It is worth noting, however, that this “wounding” of Adam in Genesis 2 occurs before the Fall. It is not something that is done on account of the Fall. And, even more to the

point, in Genesis 1, where the description of human creation is recounted, both male and female are mentioned.

Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. (Gen 1:26-27 NKJ)

                  However, as both accounts are seen together (as they normally are in the Tradition), the woman of Genesis 1, presumes the “wounded” Adam of Genesis 2. “In the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.” What is this image according to which He created them (“wounded” man and “side-born” woman)? It is obviously St. John’s slain Lamb, the Crucified Christ.

                  This in no way contradicts Scripture. Rather, it explicates Scripture. But even more than that, it unmasks a common mistake and faulty assumption made by many (if not most). That common mistake is to see the Crucifixion as simply a moment in history, perhaps foreshadowed in various Old Testament figures. This pure historicization of the Cross fails to account for the language of St. John. And in doing this, it fails to rightly understand what it means to be truly human.

St. Paul says to the Corinthians:

For I determined not to know anything among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified. (1Co 2:2)

In saying this he does not mean that he is restricting himself to speaking about the historical Crucifixion and its role in salvation. Indeed, in the very passage where he makes this declaration, his topic is not the historical crucifixion but his own weakness and lack of excellence.

                  And I, brethren, when I came to you, did not come with excellence of speech or of wisdom declaring to you the testimony of God. For I determined not to know anything among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified. I was with you in weakness, in fear, and in much trembling. And my speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words of human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, that your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the power of God. (1Co 2:1-5)

                  He had earlier declared:

but we preach Christ crucified, to the Jews a stumbling block and to the Greeks foolishness, but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. (1Co 1:23-24)

                  This crucified Christ is the same Wisdom through which God has made all things (Ps. 104:24). All of this pushes us towards the mystery of the Cross and the fullness of its meaning for existence. Reducing the Cross and Christ’s death to mere atonement, a Divine arrangement to rescue man from his tragic, sinful predicament, is just that: a reduction. Of course, the Cross is all of that – but everything more. If the Crucified Christ is the Wisdom through which God created all things, then the Cross is also, somehow, at the center and meaning of all things. The Cross alone reveals things to be what they truly are.

It is in the light of this that we understand that being conformed to the image of the Crucified is the fulfillment of our true humanity and not simply a moral effort:

The cruciform human is the true human. Kenosis is theosis.

 

 

                 

            

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Rev. Daniel Mathewson –Rector

 May 17th, 2015        

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801

25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 www.orthodoxcrossingville.org

 Christ is Risen!   Truly He is risen!

 SUNDAY OF THE BLINDMAN

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel. 

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

Sebastian Hinkler, Debbie  Kirzmanich , Vernon Baldwin Alice Suscheck, Valentina Emelianow, Michael Gresh, Karen Raydo, , Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Timothy Alberti, Tanya Ferra, Claudia Sekel Evelyn…  The Newly illumined Jeremiah Stump, William Shontz, Wesly Shontz… Inquirers and Catechumens David Angelini, …. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko,… military servers…Greg Hargett….our seminarian….Tristan Gall and his fiancée Mary… Departed…John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White.

 

Tone 5    Troparion              (Resurrection)

Let us, the faithful, praise and worship the Word,

co-eternal with the Father and the Spirit,

born for our salvation from the Virgin;

for He willed to be lifted up on the Cross in the flesh,

to endure death,

and to raise the dead//

by His glorious Resurrection.

Tone 4    Kontakion             (from the Pentecostarion)

I come to Thee, O Christ, blind from birth in my spiritual eyes,

and call to Thee in repentance://

Thou art the most radiant Light of those in darkness.

Tone 8    Kontakion             (Pascha)

Thou didst descend into the tomb, O Immortal,

Thou didst destroy the power of death.

In victory Thou didst arise, O Christ God,

proclaiming, “Rejoice!” to the Myrrhbearing Women,//

granting peace to Thine Apostles, and bestowing

Resurrection on the fallen.

6th SUNDAY OF PASCHA — Tone 5. Blind Man. Apostle Andronicus of the Seventy and his fellow-laborer, Junia (1st c.). St. Euphrosyne (Princess Eudoxia) of Moscow (1407). Martyrs Solochon, Pamphamer, and Pamphalon, at Chalcedon (284-305). St. Stephen, Archbishop of Constantinople (893).

 

Acts 16:16-34 (Epistle)

Now it happened, as we went to prayer, that a certain slave girl possessed with a spirit of divination met us, who brought her masters much profit by fortune-telling. This girl followed Paul and us, and cried out, saying, “These men are the servants of the Most High God, who proclaim to us the way of salvation.” And this she did for many days. But Paul, greatly annoyed, turned and said to the spirit, “I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her.” And he came out that very hour. But when her masters saw that their hope of profit was gone, they seized Paul and Silas and dragged them into the marketplace to the authorities. And they brought them to the magistrates, and said, “These men, being Jews, exceedingly trouble our city; and they teach customs which are not lawful for us, being Romans, to receive or observe. Then the multitude rose up together against them; and the magistrates tore off their clothes and commanded them to be beaten with rods. And when they had laid many stripes on them, they threw them into prison, commanding the jailer to keep them securely. Having received such a charge, he put them into the inner prison and fastened their feet in the stocks. But at midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them. Suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken; and immediately all the doors were opened and everyone’s chains were loosed. And the keeper of the prison, awaking from sleep and seeing the prison doors open, supposing the prisoners had fled, drew his sword and was about to kill himself. But Paul called with a loud voice, saying, “Do yourself no harm, for we are all here.” Then he called for a light, ran in, and fell down trembling before Paul and Silas.

And he brought them out and said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” So they said, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household.”

Then they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all who were in his house. And he took them the same hour of the night and washed their stripes. And immediately he and all his family were baptized. Now when he had brought them into his house, he set food before them; and he rejoiced, having believed in God with all his household.

 

John 9:1-38 (Gospel)

Now as Jesus passed by, He saw a man who was blind from birth. And His disciples asked Him, saying, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?”

Jesus answered, “Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but that the works of God should be revealed in him. I must work the works of Him who sent Me while it is day; the night is coming when no one can work. As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world. When He had said these things, He spat on the ground and made clay with the saliva; and He anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay. And He said to him, “Go, wash in the pool of Siloam” (which is translated, Sent). So he went and washed, and came back seeing. Therefore the neighbors and those who previously had seen that he was blind said, “Is not this he who sat and begged?” Some said, “This is he.” Others said, “He is like him.” He said, “I am he.” Therefore they said to him, “How were your eyes opened?” He answered and said, “A Man called Jesus made clay and anointed my eyes and said to me, ‘Go to the pool of Siloam and wash.’ So I went and washed, and I received sight.” Then they said to him, “Where is He?” He said, “I do not know.” They brought him who formerly was blind to the Pharisees. Now it was a Sabbath when Jesus made the clay and opened his eyes. Then the Pharisees also asked him again how he had received his sight. He said to them, “He put clay on my eyes, and I washed, and I see.” Therefore some of the Pharisees said, “This Man is not from God, because He does not keep the Sabbath.” Others said, “How can a man who is a sinner do such signs?” And there was a division among them. They said to the blind man again, “What do you say about Him because He opened your eyes?” He said, “He is a prophet.” But the Jews did not believe concerning him, that he had been blind and received his sight, until they called the parents of him who had received his sight. And they asked them, saying, “Is this your son, who you say was born blind? How then does he now see?” His parents answered them and said, “We know that this is our son, and that he was born blind; but by what means he now sees we do not know, or who opened his eyes we do not know. He is of age; ask him. He will speak for himself. His parents said these things because they feared the Jews, for the Jews had agreed already that if anyone confessed that He was Christ, he would be put out of the synagogue. Therefore his parents said, “He is of age; ask him.” So they again called the man who was blind, and said to him, “Give God the glory! We know that this Man is a sinner.” He answered and said, “Whether He is a sinner or not I do not know. One thing I know: that though I was blind, now I see.”

Then they said to him again, “What did He do to you? How did He open your eyes?”

He answered them, “I told you already, and you did not listen. Why do you want to hear it again? Do you also want to become His disciples?” Then they reviled him and said, “You are His disciple, but we are Moses’ disciples. We know that God spoke to Moses; as for this fellow, we do not know where He is from. The man answered and said to them, “Why, this is a marvelous thing, that you do not know where He is from; yet He has opened my eyes! Now we know that God does not hear sinners; but if anyone is a worshiper of God and does His will, He hears him. Since the world began it has been unheard of that anyone opened the eyes of one who was born blind. If this Man were not from God, He could do nothing. They answered and said to him, “You were completely born in sins, and are you teaching us?” And they cast him out. Jesus heard that they had cast him out; and when He had found him, He said to him, “Do you believe in the Son of God?” He answered and said, “Who is He, Lord, that I may believe in Him?” And Jesus said to him, “You have both seen Him and it is He who is talking with you.” Then he said, “Lord, I believe!” And he worshiped Him.

The Poetry of God   by Fr. Stephen Freeman

                  Whoever wants to become a Christian must first become a poet. – St. Pophyrios of Kavsokalyvia. St. Porphyrios made this statement in the context of love and suffering:

“That’s what it is! You must suffer. You must love and suffer–suffer for the one you love. Love makes effort for the loved one. She runs all through the night; she stays awake; she stains her feet with blood in order to meet her beloved. She makes sacrifices and disregards all impediments, threats, and difficulties for the sake of the loved one. Love towards Christ is something even higher, infinitely higher.”

                  This is a rich image of the poet – or what can drive us both to poetry as well as theology. In the history of the Church, a number of the greatest theologians have also been poets. St. Gregory the Theologian, St. Gregory of Nyssa, St. John of Damascus, St. Isaac of Syria, St. Ephrem of Edessa – the list goes on and on – all joined theology to poetic endeavor. When we include the fact that the bulk of Orthodox theology is to be found in the hymns of the Church, we have to admit that the heart of the poet and the heart of the theologian are much the same thing. This is true in the manner described by St. Porphyrios – the image of the suffering poet. But it is also true of the manner in which the poet seeks to give expression:

“…nothing which we are to perceive in this world equals
the power of your intense fragility: whose texture
compels me with the color of its countries,
rendering death and forever with each breathing

(i do not know what it is about you that closes
and opens; only something in me understands
the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses)
nobody, not even the rain, has such small hands

(from e.e. cummings, “somewhere i have never travelled, gladly beyond”)

                  “I love you,” would state the simple facts. “…rendering death and forever with each breathing…,” wins the smile.

      

                  The lover speaking to the beloved is seeking words for what cannot be spoken. The very inexpressible quality of thought and emotion demands words in the irony that is poetic expression. Theology easily transcends the boundaries of romance – rightly expressed, theology always speaks the unspeakable.

                  I have railed from time to time about various “literal” and “flat” approaches to the world as well as to Scripture. “Literal” is obviously not the correct or sufficient word. When I complain about this – it is a complaint that tends to see the world in a one-to-one correspondence in the realm of reason. Prose (“just the facts, Ma’m”) is insufficient to the human experience or to the reality in which we live. The English language (to mention only the largest human language) is estimated to have around 250,000 words (though some counts go as high as a million) when far fewer would suffice for simple prose. How many times have you ever thought to yourself that the weather felt “salubrious?”

                  I have repeatedly pressed this point because I think that mystery is not only an aspect of the divine, but part of the nature of all reality. Everything is far more than it appears.

With the heart of a poet St. Gregory of Nyssa asserts, “Only wonder understands anything.” The role of wonder is (among other things) to slow us down, make us quiet, and help us pay attention. The “flat-landers” sail prosaically through life and miss most of what is true, drawing only the most obvious conclusions, even when what is obvious is incorrect. It is the things that are “out of place” that are easily ignored (they’re so bothersome!), while they are most often the clues that reveal the mystery.

                  The reduction of the world and its “history,” are the tools of those who lack the imagination and patience to find the truth. Those who prosaically analyze history and the present as the simple march of freedom (for slaves, for blacks, for women, for gays, for whoever is next-in-line) miss most of human history, its complexities and the mystery that still awaits discovery. The same reductionist model being applied to the present serves the forces of our own misery and the suicide of our culture. Any society that manages to believe the story that giving birth and nurturing children is less than the most challenging, fulfilling and noble activity of human beings does not deserve to survive. It is the society of the anti-Christ.

                  The suffering of marriage, of children, of the day-to-day tedium of existence is the poetry of the world. It rhymes with the heart-beat of every creature on the planet. Death and life and death and life are the rich contours where salvation is wrought. The entertainment culture and its demand for infinite freedom is not the home of creativity. It is anti-creative: consumers consuming consumers.

                  Evil is never creative. It is destructive and occasionally diverse in its activities. But creativity requires energy and commitment. Evil’s own entropy always reduces it to banality and boredom. It prefers prose: poetry is too much work. The cold record-keeping of the 20th century’s murderous regimes echo with the rhymes of bureaucracy. The efficiencies of 1984and Brave New World have the poet’s loathing of control and predictability.

Aldous Huxley was not a believer. But he had the heart of a poet. In his novel, Brave New World, the Savage is confronted with the cold efficiency of a comfortable regime. People need no longer suffer. He confronts the triumph of utility with a poet’s rage:

But I don’t want comfort. I want God, I want poetry, I want real danger, I want freedom, I want goodness. I want sin.

                  It is not unlike St. Porphyrios: “You must suffer. You must love and suffer–suffer for the one you love. Love makes effort for the loved one. She runs all through the night; she stays awake; she stains her feet with blood in order to meet her beloved.”

Just so.

 

– that our sin is revealed and that grace is been shown to be greater. Glory to God for all things!


           

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Rev. Daniel Mathewson –Rector

May 10th, 2015        

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801

25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 Christ is Risen!   Truly He is risen!

 St. Photini the Samaritan woman

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS:

Alice Suscheck, Valentina Emelianow, Michael Gresh, Karen Raydo, Vernon and Mary Baldwin, Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Timothy Alberti, Margaret Ristvey, Tanya Ferra, Christina Harmon, Debbie  Kirzmanich, , Evelyn, Sebastian,… The Newly illumined Jeremiah Stump, William Shontz, Wesly Shontz… Inquirers and Catechumens  David Angelini, …. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko, Claudia Sukel… military servers…Greg Hargett….our seminarian….Tristan Gall and his fiancée Mary… Departed…John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White.

 

Tone 4    Troparion              (Resurrection)

When the women Disciples of the Lord

learned from the Angel the joyous message of the Resurrection,

they cast away the ancestral curse

and elatedly told the Apostles:

“Death is overthrown!

Christ God is risen,// granting the world great mercy!”

Tone 8    Troparion              (Midfeast)

In the middle of the feast, O Savior,

fill my thirsting soul with the waters of piety,

as Thou didst cry to all: “If anyone thirst, let him come to

Me and drink!”// O Christ God, Fountain of our life, glory to Thee!

Tone 8    Kontakion  (Pentecostarion)

The Samaritan Woman came to the well in faith;

she saw Thee, the Water of wisdom and drank abundantly.//

She inherited the Kingdom on high, and is ever glorified!

Tone 4    Kontakion     (Midfeast)

Christ God, the Creator and Master of all,

cried to all in the midst of the feast of the Law:

“Come and draw the water of immortality!”

We fall before Thee and faithfully cry://

Grant us Thy mercies, for Thou art the Fountain of our life!

Tone 3    Prokeimenon

Sing praises to our God, sing praises! Sing praises to our King, sing

praises! (Ps 46/47:6)

v: Clap thy hands, all peoples! Shout to God with loud songs of joy!

(Ps 46/47:1)

5th SUNDAY OF PASCHA — Tone 4. Apostle Simeon the Zealot (1st c.).Samaritan Woman. St. Simeon, Bishop of Vladimir and Suzdal’ (Kiev Caves-Near Caves—1226). Martyrs Philadelphus, Cyprian, Alphius, Onesimus, Erasmus, and 14 others, in Sicily (3rd c.). Martyr Hesychius of Antioch (4th c.). Bl. Isidora the Fool, of Tabenna in Egypt (4th c.). Bl. Thais (Taisia) of Egypt (5th c.).

 

Acts 11:19-26, 29-30 (Epistle)

Now those who were scattered after the persecution that arose over Stephen traveled as far as Phoenicia, Cyprus, and Antioch, preaching the word to no one but the Jews only. But some of them were men from Cyprus and Cyrene, who, when they had come to Antioch, spoke to the Hellenists, preaching the Lord Jesus. And the hand of the Lord was with them, and a great number believed and turned to the Lord. Then news of these things came to the ears of the church in Jerusalem, and they sent out Barnabas to go as far as Antioch. When he came and had seen the grace of God, he was glad, and encouraged them all that with purpose of heart they should continue with the Lord. For he was a good man, full of the Holy Spirit and of faith. And a great many people were added to the Lord. Then Barnabas departed for Tarsus to seek Saul. And when he had found him, he brought him to Antioch. So it was that for a whole year they assembled with the church and taught a great many people. And the disciples were first called Christians in Antioch. Then the disciples, each according to his ability, determined to send relief to the brethren dwelling in Judea. This they also did, and sent it to the elders by the hands of Barnabas and Saul.

John 4:5-42 (Gospel)

So He came to a city of Samaria which is called Sychar, near the plot of ground that Jacob gave to his son Joseph.Now Jacob’s well was there. Jesus therefore, being wearied from His journey, sat thus by the well. It was about the sixth hour.A woman of Samaria came to draw water. Jesus said to her, “Give Me a drink.”For His disciples had gone away into the city to buy food.Then the woman of Samaria said to Him, “How is it that You, being a Jew, ask a drink from me, a Samaritan woman?” For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans.Jesus answered and said to her, “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, ‘Give Me a drink,’ you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water.”The woman said to Him, “Sir, You have nothing to draw with, and the well is deep. Where then do You get that living water?  Are You greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well, and drank from it himself, as well as his sons and his livestock?  Jesus answered and said to her, “Whoever drinks of this water will thirst again,but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life.The woman said to Him, “Sir, give me this water, that I may not thirst, nor come here to draw.” Jesus said to her, “Go, call your husband, and come here.”The woman answered and said, “I have no husband.” Jesus said to her, “You have well said, ‘I have no husband,’for you have had five husbands, and the one whom you now have is not your husband; in that you spoke truly.The woman said to Him, “Sir, I perceive that You are a prophet.Our fathers worshiped on this mountain, and you Jews say that in Jerusalem is the place where one ought to worship.Jesus said to her, “Woman, believe Me, the hour is coming when you will neither on this mountain, nor in Jerusalem, worship the Father.You worship what you do not know; we know what we worship, for salvation is of the Jews.But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him.God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth. The woman said to Him, “I know that Messiah is coming” (who is called Christ). “When He comes, He will tell us all things.” Jesus said to her, “I who speak to you am He.”

And at this point His disciples came, and they marveled that He talked with a woman; yet no one said, “What do You seek?” or, “Why are You talking with her?” The woman then left her waterpot, went her way into the city, and said to the men, Come, see a Man who told me all things that I ever did. Could this be the Christ? Then they went out of the city and came to Him.In the meantime His disciples urged Him, saying, “Rabbi, eat.”But He said to them, “I have food to eat of which you do not know.” Therefore the disciples said to one another, “Has anyone brought Him anything to eat?”Jesus said to them, “My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me, and to finish His work.Do you not say, ‘There are still four months and then comes the harvest’? Behold, I say to you, lift up your eyes and look at the fields, for they are already white for harvest!And he who reaps receives wages, and gathers fruit for eternal life, that both he who sows and he who reaps may rejoice together.For in this the saying is true: ‘One sows and another reaps.’I sent you to reap that for which you have not labored; others have labored, and you have entered into their labors.And many of the Samaritans of that city believed in Him because of the word of the woman who testified, “He told me all that I ever did.”So when the Samaritans had come to Him, they urged Him to stay with them; and He stayed there two days. And many more believed because of His own word. Then they said to the woman, “Now we believe, not because of what you said, for we ourselves have heard Him and we know that this is indeed the Christ, the Savior of the world.”

 

Announcements:

TODAY is Mothers Day - The Men's Fellowship will be sponsoring a Chicken Cacciatore

dinner for all the Mothers of the parish following Divine Liturgy that day. All Mothers eat free. Suggested Donation is: 10$ for Adults 12 and up, Children 4$, Under 3 Free.

Rummage Sale May 22-23 – We are still collecting items and bake sale food. (See Lisa) 

--Missions Trip- June 15th-19th in West Brownesville PA. See Fr. Daniel for more details.

--St Sava’s Orthodox Youth Camp July 26th-August 1st

---All American Council July 20th -24th 2015 Atlanta, Georgia

 Financial Report: January- Income: $12857.27 Expenses: $4550.17 February- Income: $4803.50 Expenses: $9502.03 March- Income: $8829.00 Expenses: $8456.79 Year Ending 2014: Income $104,631.17 Expenses: $107,260.53

Getting Back up   by Fr. Stephen Freeman

                  One of the fathers was asked, “What do you do all day in the monastery?” He replied, “We fall down and get up; fall down and get up; fall down and get up again.”

This, I think, may be the most accurate and faithful description of the Christian life that I know. We fall, and we fall repeatedly. Our very best intentions often serve to make the sting of the fall all the more painful. In my experience, many Christians harbor a quiet despair.

The world suffered a great loss recently with the death of Archimandrite Roman Braga. He was among a number of great Romanian figures who survived the terrible prison in Piteşti, during the early 1950’s. The Communist regime had decided to carry out a program of psychological and physical torture on Christians that are among the worst ever visited on the Church.

                  Fr. Roman, Fr. George Calciu, Pastor Richard Wurmbrand and others survived the ordeal. Alexander Solzhenitsyn once labeled the Piteşti prison program as “the most terrible act of barbarism in the contemporary world.”

                  The stories related by the survivors give us a window into the unimaginable.

Without relating those graphic details, I will share one common element. The program was designed for “brainwashing through torture.” The agreed account says that “everyone broke.” Everyone denied their faith under torture. Prisoners were even forced to take part in the torture of other prisoners. Suicides were common. Fr. Roman said that each day they would return from the tortures, broken and filled with self-loathing at their denial of Christ. And, every day, all of the prisoners would forgive and restore those who had been broken.

In the midst of this terrible human-created hell, a number of the prisoners clearly became saints. Stories of the uncreated light are not uncommon. Fr. Roman said that it was in the prison that he learned to pray.

                  I count it a remarkable blessing that three of the greatest confessors of the Piteşti experiment came eventually to reside in America and ended their days in this land.

I also count their experience as a teacher for our modern period. The goal of the Piteşti experiment was brain-washing, to make prisoners abandon their belief in God and to acquire a new mind – that of their Communist torturers. We live today in a very benignly constructed era of brainwashing. Never at any time in my life (61 years), have I seen such angry reactions and denunciations of Christianity as are common today. Many will point to various failings or crimes of the Church and say that Christians have only themselves to blame. But, this is itself a very sad distortion. 

                  I do not see the daily great trial of Christians coming from the extremes or being provoked by Christian mis-behavior. It is the relentless drumming of mass consumerism, mind-numbing mis-education and manipulation of sexual desires that are the most destructive of our faith. And the consequences that are most disturbing are not found in the extremes, but in the quiet despair of average, well-intentioned believers. The lure of secularism is its claim and pretensions to “normalcy.” Secularism (the claim that either there is no God, or that if there is, He belongs to a “religious” sphere) is the default position of our culture. The exclusion of God from daily life is simply seen as normal.

                   The result is that repeated falls in Christian struggles are met with, “Why bother?” One insidious perversion of Christian teaching suggests that once a person has accepted Christ as savior, nothing else matters. Salvation can thus be the gateway into a secularized Christian life in which religious devotion is simply numbed into non-existence.

                  Judging by the “Post-Christianity” of the modern West, this numbing secularization is far more successful in suppressing Christianity than the flagrant persecutions in the Communist East. Christianity is trending upward in those countries, in stark contrast to the West.

                  The martyrs and confessors of Piteşti stand as witnesses to those who fall each day. For the most remarkable witness of their experience is that they got back up. Not only did they get back up, but their fellow-sufferers restored them, forgave them, and welcomed them back into their lives. Individuals got back up, but with every act of forgiveness and restoration, the entire community got back up.

                  The Christians of Piteşti, in their patient endurance and quiet generosity, overthrew “the most terrible act of barbarism in the contemporary world,” and did so on a daily basis. Learning to “get back up,” is perhaps the greatest requirement of the Christian life in the modern world. I have several specific thoughts in this regard:

1. Know where you are.

You live in a highly secularized world. It is not a “neutral zone,” but a setting that is quietly hostile to most of Christian believing. As the fathers said, “Prayer is a struggle to a man’s dying breath.” Expect nothing different.

2. Trust in mercy above all else.

God is on your side and has not given you this life in order to test you or to condemn you. St. Isaac of Syria said that all of the world’s sin was nothing more than a grain of sand compared to the ocean of God’s mercy.

3. You are saved by your weakness, not by your strength.

The teaching of the Scriptures are quite clear: we are saved by our weakness, not in spite of our weakness. (2 Cor. 12:9) God made Christ to be sin that we might be made the righteousness of God. (2 Cor. 5:21)

4. Get back to work.

St. Paul tells us that “where sin increases, grace increases even more.” But warns us not to use this as an excuse. We simply dust ourselves off, and get back to our spiritual struggle. This is especially true of our prayers. People frequently avoid their prayers after a fall of one sort or another. They feel somehow unworthy or incapable. This is utter nonsense. We should rush to our prayers after a fall – the sooner the better. It is good for us, and the devil hates it.

5. Never judge another.

We are all aware that we should not judge. But we take this to be a moral teaching. It is far more than that. We do not judge because it is not possible for us to judge rightly. This even applies to our own lives. Not until all things are revealed at the end of days will judgment be possible. We must learn to be agnostic about the sins of others. We simply do not know.

6. Give thanks in all things.

To give thanks in all things (and for all things) is a primary, foundational aspect of the Christian life. We must learn in the end, to give thanks even for our falls. For though in our falls, sin is revealed, grace is revealed to be even greater. And so we give thanks – that our sin is revealed and that grace is been shown to be greater. Glory to God for all things!

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Rev. Daniel Mathewson –Rector

 April 26th, 2015        

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801

25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 www.orthodoxcrossingville.org

 Christ is Risen!   Truly He is risen!

 

Sunday of the Myrrh-bearing women

 

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel. 

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS: Valentina Emelianow, Michael Gresh, Karen Raydo, Vernon and Mary Baldwin, Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Timothy Alberti, Margaret Ristvey, Tanya Ferra, Christina Harmon, Debbie  Kirzmanich, , Evelyn… The Newly illumined Jeremiah Stump, William Shontz, Wesly Shontz… Inquirers and Catechumens  David Angelini, …. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko, Claudia Sukel… military servers…Greg Hargett….our seminarian….Tristan Gall and his fiancée Mary… Departed…John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White.

 

Etiquette continued… Other Orthodox Pious Customs….

• Crossing oneself—It is always appropriate to cross oneself at the mention of the Holy Trinity—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit; whenever entering or leaving the church; at the beginning of the Liturgy; when passing in front of the altar; when venerating an icon, the Gospel, or the cross; and at times for personal petitions. It is not necessary to cross oneself when the priest is giving a blessing or censing the congregation. Instead, one should bow to receive the blessing.

• Bowing—Orthodox Christians bow when the Theotokos and Christ are petitioned. They also bow to the priest at his blessing, and when he asks forgiveness before the Great Entrance and again before Holy Communion. It is traditional for the Orthodox faithful to bow and cross themselves when they enter and leave the church (turning to the altar), and when they pray before the icons.

• Kneeling—In our Orthodox tradition there are times when kneeling is a pious practice in the Liturgy during week days at the Lord’s Prayer at the end of the Service. However, kneeling is prohibited during Sunday Divine Liturgies and the Paschal season, from Pascha to Pentecost, in honor of the Resurrection a festal not penitential celebreation.

• Touching the priest’s vestments—It is a tradition in some parishes to touch the hem of the priest’s vestment or phelonion as he passes by in the Great Entrance with the Holy Gifts. This custom imitates the woman who was healed by touching the hem of Christ’s robe. When touching the hem of the priest’s phelonion, one should be careful not to step in front of the procession, to pull or tug on the garment, or to push anyone away.

3rd SUNDAY OF PASCHA — Tone 2. Myrrhbearing Women. Hieromartyr Basil, Bishop of Amasea (ca. 322). St. Stephen, Bishop of Perm (1396). Righteous Virgin Glaphyra (322). St. Joannicius of Devich in Serbia (13th c.).

 

Acts 6:1-7 (Epistle)

Now in those days, when the number of the disciples was multiplying, there arose a complaint against the Hebrews by the Hellenists, because their widows were neglected in the daily distribution. Then the twelve summoned the multitude of the disciples and said, “It is not desirable that we should leave the word of God and serve tables. Therefore, brethren, seek out from among you seven men of good reputation, full of the Holy Spirit and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business; but we will give ourselves continually to prayer and to the ministry of the word. And the saying pleased the whole multitude. And they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and the Holy Spirit, and Philip, Prochorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolas, a proselyte from Antioch, whom they set before the apostles; and when they had prayed, they laid hands on them. Then the word of God spread, and the number of the disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priests were obedient to the faith.

 

Mark 15:43-16:8 (Gospel)

Joseph of Arimathea, a prominent council member, who was himself waiting for the kingdom of God, coming and taking courage, went in to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus. Pilate marveled that He was already dead; and summoning the centurion, he asked him if He had been dead for some time. So when he found out from the centurion, he granted the body to Joseph. Then he bought fine linen, took Him down, and wrapped Him in the linen. And he laid Him in a tomb, which had been hewn out of the rock, and rolled a stone against the door of the tomb. And Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of Joses observed where He was laid. Now when the Sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices that they might come and anoint Him. Very early in the morning, on the first day of the week, they came to the tomb when the sun had risen. And they said among themselves, “Who will roll away the stone from the door of the tomb for us?” But when they looked up, they saw that the stone had been rolled away – for it was very large. And entering the tomb, they saw a young man clothed in a long white robe sitting on the right side; and they were alarmed. But he said to them, “Do not be alarmed. You seek Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He is risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid Him. But go, tell His disciples – and Peter – that He is going before you into Galilee; there you will see Him, as He said to you. So they went out quickly and fled from the tomb, for they trembled and were amazed. And they said nothing to anyone, for they were afraid.

THE LAST BANQUET      Fr. Stephen Freeman

Since we’re thinking about heaven and hell…

                  Once a week I teach a class at a local alcohol and drug treatment program. It is on the “spirituality of recovery.” Recently I shared Marmaladov’s speech from Crime and Punishment (at the end of this article). There were tears in the room. For many, the version of the gospel they have heard only condemns. Most of the men I meet want to get well, to get sober. Not all of them believe that God is actually on their side. Marmaladov’s speech is wonderfully “over the top.” Do we dare believe that God will be (is) so kind?

                  As He passed by, He saw Levi the son of Alphaeus sitting at the tax office. And He said to him, “Follow Me.” So he arose and followed Him. Now it happened, as He was dining in Levi’s house, that many tax collectors and sinners also sat together with Jesus and His disciples; for there were many, and they followed Him. And when the scribes and Pharisees saw Him eating with the tax collectors and sinners, they said to His disciples, “How is it that He eats and drinks with tax collectors and sinners?”

                  When Jesus heard it, He said to them, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance.” (Mark 2:14-17)

                  What struck me as I listened to it was a unique quality of Christ as God incarnate: everywhere He goes the icon of the Kingdom forms around Him. In this particular gospel passage, the image is that of the banquet at the end of the ages, the Messianic banquet. And as Christ warned others, the harlots and sinners have gotten there ahead of them (Matt. 21:31).

Every meal that Christ shares in the gospels, because of who He is, cannot help but be the Messianic Banquet. Every table becomes an altar, every meal, the Eucharist.

                  Before approaching the Holy Cup at Divine Liturgy, Orthodox Christians say in unison: I believe, O Lord, and I confess, that Thou art truly the Christ, the Son of the Living God, who camest into the world to save sinners, of whom I am first…

It is not unlike the beautiful communion prayer of the Anglican reformer, Thomas Cranmer: “We are not worthy so much as to gather up the crumbs under Thy table…”

                  It is the true image of the great banquet – a gathering of the unrighteous with the Righteous One, the unworthy with Only Worthy. This is the other side of the “Narrow Door.” Here the difficult path is not marked by asceticism, but by a humility, indeed a humility wrought by a broken life. I have encountered such humility many times, and have frequently found my own “religious” accomplishments soundly rebuked. I do not need anyone to remind me that 1 Corinthians 6:10 says that “drunkards” will not inherit the Kingdom. But, O strange wonder, many of them will be found in the Kingdom while others are thrust out! Dostoevsky’s Marmeladov explains why.

Marmeladov’s Vision…

                  …”And He will judge and will forgive all, the good and the evil, the wise and the meek…And when He has done with all of them, then He will summon us, ‘You too come forth,’ He will say, ‘Come forth, ye drunkards, come forth, ye weak ones, come forth, ye children of shame!’ And we shall all come forth without shame and shall stand before Him. And He will say unto us, ‘Ye are swine, made in the image of the Beast and with his mark; but come ye also!’ And the wise ones and those of understanding will say, ‘O Lord, why dost Thou receive these men?’ And He will say,’This is why I receive them, O ye wise, this is why I receive them, O ye of understanding, that not one of them believed himself to be worthy of this.’ And He will hold out His hands to us and we shall fall down before Him…and we shall weep…and we shall understand all things! Then we shall understand all!…and all will understand, Katerina Ivanovna even…she will understand…Lord, Thy kingdom come!” And he sank down on the bench exhausted and helpless, looking at no one, apparently oblivious of his surroundings and plunged in deep thought. His words had created a certain impression; there was a moment of silence; but soon laughter and oaths were heard again.

Announcements:

 

If you have been supporting our seminarian Tristan Gall over the last few years…thank God for all your contributions! This is Tristan’s last semester. He will be graduating from St. Vladimir’s in May. We are asking for one final push for Tristan so he can finish out his time out of debt. Any donation made by our parish will be matched by scholarships at the Seminary. God bless you fro this important part of our parish life. Tristan and his new bride Mary will be here on July 26th (St Jacob Enlightener of the peoples of Alaska) for a reception. All from the parish are invited.

 

TODAY Youth and Family Bowling Mt. Lebonon PA 4-7pm

 

Next Week May 3rd …Mission Team Meeting during Coffee hour

 

Mothers Day - May 10th The Men's Fellowship will be sponsoring a dinner for all the Mothers and daughters of the parish following Divine Liturgy that day.

 

Parish Rummage Sale—MAY 22-23rd –We will be collecting items and baked goods for sale. You may bring items to the hall any time. We are looking for cookies, pies, and other goodies.

 

--Missions Trip- June 15th-19th in West Brownesville PA. See Fr. Daniel for more details.

 

--St Sava’s Orthodox Youth Camp July 26th- August 1st

 

---All American Council July 20th -24th 2015 - Atlanta, Georgia (in conjunction w/FOCA Convention)

 

- Please Sign up to serve for Coffee Hour in the hall or see Marie Angelini

- Parish Council Meeting May 13th

    The Perfect Person's Rule of Life:

  • The perfect person does not only try to avoid evil. Nor does he do good for fear of punishment, still less in order to qualify for the hope of a promised reward.
  • The perfect person does good through love.
  • His actions are not motivated by desire for personal benefit, so he does not have personal advantage as his aim. But as soon as he has realized the beauty of doing good, he does it with all his energies and in all that he does.
  • He is not interested in fame, or a good reputation, or a human or divine reward.
  • The rule of life for a perfect person is to be in the image and likeness of God.        —St. Clement of Alexandria

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Rev. Daniel Mathewson –Rector

April 19th, 2015        

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801

25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 www.orthodoxcrossingville.org

 

Christ is Risen!   Truly He is risen!

 

St. Thomas Sunday

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS: Valentina Emelianow, Michael Gresh, Karen Raydo, Vernon and Mary Baldwin, Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Timothy Alberti, Margaret Ristvey, Tanya Ferra, Christina Harmon, Debbie  Kirzmanich, , Evelyn… The Newly illumined Jeremiah Stump, William Shontz, Wesly Shontz… Inquirers and Catechumens  David Angelini, …. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko, Claudia Sukel… military servers…Greg Hargett….our seminarian….Tristan Gall and his fiancée Mary… Departed…John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas Hopko, Fr. Paul White.

 

Lighting of Candles

It is a pious Orthodox tradition to light candles for personal petitions and intercessions when entering the church. Most parishes have designated candle stands or holders for these candles. It is not proper to light candles at certain times during the service—generally the same times when you should not enter the church, such as during the Little and Great Entrances, when the priest is censing the icons and congregation or giving the homily, or during the reading of the Epistle or Gospel. The candles should be allowed to burn all the way down without being extinguished early, since the burning candle symbolizes our prayers rising to heaven and the light of Christ in our midst. Please do not allow young children to light candles alone, for safety reasons. It is customary to make a donation for each candle.

 

Venerating Icons

The Orthodox Church teaches that it is proper to venerate, not worship, icons. The acceptable way to do this is to kiss either the hands or feet of the saint depicted in the icon, or the scroll, the Gospel book, or the hand cross a saint is holding, Please do not wear lipstick when kissing the icons since the residue will ruin them.

 

ANTIPASCHA. 2nd SUNDAY OF PASCHA — Tone 1. St. Thomas Sunday.Ven. John of the Ancient Caves in Palestine (8th c.). Martyrs Christopher, Theonas, and Anthony, at Rome (303). Hieromartyr Paphnutius of Jerusalem. St. George the Confessor, Bishop of Antioch in Pisidia (9th c.). St. Tryphon, Patriarch of Constantinople (933). Ven. Nicephorus, Abbot of Catabad. Monk Martyr Agathangelos of Esphigmenou (Mt. Athos—1819). Ven. Simeon of Philotheou (Mt. Athos—16th c.).

 

Acts 5:12-20 (Epistle)

And through the hands of the apostles many signs and wonders were done among the people. And they were all with one accord in Solomon’s Porch. Yet none of the rest dared join them, but the people esteemed them highly. And believers were increasingly added to the Lord, multitudes of both men and women, so that they brought the sick out into the streets and laid them on beds and couches, that at least the shadow of Peter passing by might fall on some of them. Also a multitude gathered from the surrounding cities to Jerusalem, bringing sick people and those who were tormented by unclean spirits, and they were all healed. Then the high priest rose up, and all those who were with him (which is the sect of the Sadducees), and they were filled with indignation, and laid their hands on the apostles and put them in the common prison. But at night an angel of the Lord opened the prison doors and brought them out, and said, Go, stand in the temple and speak to the people all the words of this life.

 

John 20:19-31 (Gospel)

Then, the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in the midst, and said to them, “Peace be with you.” When He had said this, He showed them His hands and His side. Then the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord. So Jesus said to them again, “Peace to you! As the Father has sent Me, I also send you.” And when He had said this, He breathed on them, and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained. Now Thomas, called the Twin, one of the twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. The other disciples therefore said to him, “We have seen the Lord.” So he said to them, “Unless I see in His hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and put my hand into His side, I will not believe.” And after eight days His disciples were again inside, and Thomas with them. Jesus came, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, “Peace to you!” Then He said to Thomas, “Reach your finger here, and look at My hands; and reach your hand here, and put it into My side. Do not be unbelieving, but believing.” And Thomas answered and said to Him, “My Lord and my God!” Jesus said to him, “Thomas, because you have seen Me, you have believed. Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” And truly Jesus did many other signs in the presence of His disciples, which are not written in this book; but these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name.


THE WORK THAT SAVES….  By Fr. Stephen Freeman

                  Do we cooperate in our salvation? Do our efforts make a difference?

These questions lie at the heart of a centuries-old religious debate in Christianity. Classically, the Protestant reformers said, “No,” to these questions, arguing that we are saved solely and utterly by God’s grace, His unmerited favor. The Catholic Church replied that “faith without works” is dead and that faith alone is insufficient.

                  This debate, with various twists and turns, has continued down through the centuries of Christian culture. At one point, there were complaints of “cheap grace,” where the exaltation of pure grace over works led to a very complacent and lazy Christianity. There were also periods of extreme reaction, with guilt-driven excesses of devotion.

                  Eastern Orthodoxy is a late-comer to this debate, but it is not a stranger. Contemporary Orthodox are quick to latch on to the doctrine of “synergy” and take sides against the cheap grace of Protestant Evangelicalism. Classically, Orthodox thought holds both that we are saved through the action of God (grace), but that we necessarily cooperated in that work (synergy=cooperation). For many converts, this balance has seemed attractive and a needed corrective to the feel-good theology of contemporary Christian culture. But it has a dark side.

                  That dark side is found in the echoes of the guilt-ridden specters of works-righteousness. How much cooperation is enough? For it is obvious that we do not pray as we should or give as we should – or do anything as we should. If our cooperation is required, are we failing? For many in our culture the answer is inevitably, “Yes.” They never do enough, anywhere at any time. Their lives are haunted with disapproval and shame, well-worn paths that rarely let them venture into joy.

But it is a mistake to embrace synergy as part of the classical Protestant/Catholic debate. It was an answer to a question asked in a very different context and in centuries that long-predated the modern conversation. Synergy is not a talking-point within the grace-versus-works debate.

                  Synergy is certainly an affirmation of the human role in salvation. Its most famous example is found in the ‘yes’ of the Mother of God in the Incarnation of Christ. Her acceptance and embrace of the heavenly announcement are seen as necessary components in God-becoming-man. God does not impose Himself upon human freedom. Our free response is required for the life of true Personhood that is the hallmark of salvation.

                  Synergy is properly seen as response rather than work. The whole life of salvation is marked by grace and is gracious in all its aspects. Consider this statement in St. Paul:

Now to him who works, the wages are not counted as grace but as debt. But to him who does not work but believes on Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is accounted for righteousness…(Rom 4:4-5).

There is a kind of work that has no wages and does not belong to the world of debt described by St. Paul. And it is this sort of work that is encompassed in the term synergy. That work can be described as gracious response. It is worth noting two instances in which the work of our spiritual lives is described:

Then they said to Him, “What shall we do, that we may work the works of God?”
Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He sent.” (Joh 6:28-29)

and

                  Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. (1Th 5:16-18)

                  In the first case, “work” is equated with believing. It means that the work we do is to love Christ and to keep His commandments. In the second case, the “will of God” is fulfilled in giving thanks for all things. The dynamic of saving grace in our lives is marked by becoming like God. God gives graciously and freely. We receive graciously and freely by giving thanks for all things.

                  In this manner, our own “work” is itself marked by a kind of grace. We cannot hear the meaning of grace in English, but in the Greek, it also carries the meaning of “gift” (it’s the same word). Gifts are never given with an expectation of return – they are gracious and free. But they are only rightly received with thanksgiving. This is true of the life of grace in the believer.

                  There is a highly moralized version of synergy, in which God is seen to give us grace, but we must do something in our lives to make it effective. In this model we are always judging the “results” of our “cooperation” with grace, and assuming that the lousy outcomes we see are simply our fault. This experience becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy of failure and remorse. It is a distortion of grace-filled synergy.

                  I have written (and been criticized for it) about the “unmoral Christian.” My intention has been to unmask and disarm this false notion of synergy. We indeed are not saved through the “works” that Protestants tend to criticize. The “work” we do is largely a state of heart from which all subsequent grace-empowered actions flow. That state of heart is best described as “grateful thanksgiving.” The Eucharistic life is the true existence of the Christian. The giving of thanks is the first of all works and the sine qua non of the spiritual life. Everything that proceeds from the giving of thanks works to our salvation. That which does not proceed from the giving of thanks tends to work to our destruction.

                  There has grown up a virtual cottage industry of Orthodox commentary (particularly on the internet where all of us can self-publish). This commentary (including that by some priests) is often marked by poor theological training or understanding, by argument and debate, and by an extreme lack of experience in the actual guidance of souls towards healing and salvation. That is to say – much of it is worthless and some of it is actually damaging.

                  This can especially be true in discussions of synergy. The wrong treatment of such pastoral matters can produce despair and distrust in naive readers whose expectations have been raised through the reading of the lives of the saints and yet whose experience is marked by the same repeated moral failures that they have always known. Well-intentioned but ignorant writers argue that what is needed is yet more moral goading. I have been criticized for possibly lightening the moral load or suggesting that all moral effort is of no use.

                  One form of moral effort (the most common) is indeed of no use. It belongs to the same category as the works criticized by Protestant theology. We pray, with no understanding, laboring to complete a prayer rule that amounts to little more than “going through the motions.” We fast as though every slip were a matter of sin in need of confession. Some go so far as to carefully search through the labels on every grocery product, seeking for tale-tell signs of “milk products,” having invented for themselves a new yoke of bondage that turns Orthodox fasting into a new version of kosher. In short, there is a form of asceticism that is ill-taught and ill-practiced and produces either despairing Christians or oppressive Pharisees (sometimes in one and the same person).

                  The grounding of the Christian life is thanksgiving. If you cannot fast with thanksgiving, your fast will be of little use. The same extends to all Christian practices and commandments. The essential work of the Christian life is grateful thanksgiving. It is for this reason that Fr. Alexander Schmemann wrote: “Anyone capable of thanksgiving is capable of salvation.”

                  There are very deep forms of asceticism, but even these are rightly rooted in the giving of thanks. In the 20th century, perhaps no saint is better known for his ascetical achievements than St. Silouan of Athos. He is known to have endured some 15 years of the experience of hell in his prayers. At its depth, he heard Christ say, “Keep your mind in hell and despair not.” His interpreter and biographer, the Elder Sophrony of Essex, however, is reported to have said, “If you will give God thanks always and for all things, you will fulfill the saying, ‘Keep your mind in hell and despair not.’”

                  The first duty of a spiritual father is to lead a soul into the practice of giving thanks. In this manner they will acquire the Spirit of Peace and be able to sustain the Christian life. But without thanksgiving, they will only fall into despair or delusion. Thanksgiving is the foundation of the Christian life. When this is understood and in place, other things can be properly understood.

                  For example, it is common to read in the spiritual writings of Orthodoxy (and to hear in the services) terms such as “self-loathing.” This is quite common, for example, in the Elder Sophrony’s work. It is very easily taken in the wrong way and those without a proper foundation will likely come away with a terrible distortion.

                  “Self-loathing,” in the sense that it is used, is not brought about by the contemplation of our sins (a moral condemnation and disgust with the self). It is rather brought about by the contemplation of God’s love and His fullness of being. It is only as we see ourselves in the light of God Himself, that we can “achieve” the “self-loathing” that Sophrony describes. But even this is joyful, because it takes place in the gracious presence of the grace-giving God.

                  Thanksgiving, as gracious gift, draws us into the very life of the Trinity. For it is that Life that is described by St. John Chrysostom in his Liturgy:

                  The priest prays: “…but account me, Your sinful and unworthy servant, worthy to offer gifts to You. For You are the Offerer and the Offered, the Receiver and the Received, O Christ our God, and to You we ascribe glory, together with Your Father, Who is without beginning, and Your all-holy, good, and life-creating Spirit, now and ever and unto ages of ages.”

                  It is this gifting life of the Offerer and the Offered, the Receiver and the Received that we enter as we rightly give thanks always for all things. This is our work, our true synergy, without which we cannot be saved.

Announcements:

-Blessing of Graves Today at Parish Cemetery

Today: Men’s Fellowship Meeting During Coffee Hour

-Mission Team Meeting May 3rd

Mothers Day - May 10th The Men's Fellowship will be sponsoring a Spagettii dinner for all the Mothers and daughters of the parish following Divine Liturgy that day. (All Men of the parish, we will have a planning meeting on April 19th at coffee hour.

-Youth and Family Bowling Rescheduled for NEXT Sunday April 28th Mt. Lebonon PA 4-7pm

--Missions Trip- June 15th-19th in West Brownesville PA. See Fr. Daniel for more details.

--St Sava’s Orthodox Youth Camp July 26th-August 1st

---All American Council July 20th -24th 2015 Atlanta, Georgia (in conjunction w/FOCA Convention)             

 

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Rev. Daniel Mathewson –Rector

 

April 5th, 2015        

 

Parish phone: 814-734-3801

25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 

www.orthodoxcrossingville.org

 

Christ is in our midst!...He is and always shall be!

 

Entry of the Lord into Jerusalem

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS: The Valentina Emelianow, Michael Gresh, Karen Raydo, Vernon and Mary Baldwin, Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Timothy Alberti, Margaret Ristvey, Tanya Ferra, Christina Harmon, Debbie  Kirzmanich, , Evelyn… The Newly illumined Jeremiah Stump, William Shontz, Wesly Shontz… Inquirers and Catechumens  David Angelini, …. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko, Claudia Sukel… military servers…Greg Hargett….our seminarian….Tristan Gall and his fiancée Mary… Departed…John Wasko, Raymond Corbin, Maggie Clayton, Fr. Thomas, Fr. Paul.

Entering the Church

The Orthodox Divine Liturgy begins when the priest intones, “Blessed is the Kingdom of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit.” We need to arrive early enough to receive this blessing. Arriving later causes a distraction for others who are praying. If an occasional problem occurs and you have to come in late, enter the church reverently and quietly. The times in which you must stay in the back of the church, or the narthex, before entering include: when the Little or Great Entrance is taking place, when the priest is censing the icons and congregation or giving the homily, and when the Epistle or Gospel is being read. If you are unsure when is the best time to enter the church, ask one of the ushers for guidance.

We come to the church on time, as if to a great banquet, and with reverence, because we are partaking of the very Body and Blood of Christ, our Savior. Coming to vespers the night before and hours (or Matins) before the Divine Liturgy will ensure that you will be settled in plenty of time to pray without distraction. It is a good habit to pray the “prayers before holy communion” in the back of the Liturgy books.

Standing in Church

It is the custom of most Orthodox Christians to stand throughout the Divine Liturgy, as well as during other services. If you choose to stand in a church that has pews, please do so near the back or sides so that the view of the altar is not blocked for those who are seated. If you must sit during the Divine Liturgy it is permissible to sit during the Homily and when the Holy Doors are closed, or when you are instructed to by the priest. Whenever a hierarch (Bishop) is visiting the parish, out of respect follow his example and stand and sit when he does.

ENTRY OF OUR LORD INTO JERUSALEM. PALM SUNDAY. Martyrs Agathopodes the Deacon, Theodulus the Reader, and those with them, at Thessalonica (ca. 303). Ven. Publius of Egypt (4th c.). Ss. Theonas, Simeon and Phorbinus, of Egypt (4th c.). Ven. Mark the Anchorite, of Athens (400). St. Plato the Confessor, of Studion (814). Ven. Theodora of Thessalonica (892). Translation of the Relics of St. Job, Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia (1652).

 

Philippians 4:4-9 (Epistle)

Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice! Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand. Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy – meditate on these things. The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you.

 

John 12:1-18 (Gospel)

Then, six days before the Passover, Jesus came to Bethany, where Lazarus was who had been dead, whom He had raised from the dead. There they made Him a supper; and Martha served, but Lazarus was one of those who sat at the table with Him. Then Mary took a pound of very costly oil of spikenard, anointed the feet of Jesus, and wiped His feet with her hair. And the house was filled with the fragrance of the oil. But one of His disciples, Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, who would betray Him, said, Why was this fragrant oil not sold for three hundred denarii and given to the poor? This he said, not that he cared for the poor, but because he was a thief, and had the money box; and he used to take what was put in it. But Jesus said, “Let her alone; she has kept this for the day of My burial. For the poor you have with you always, but Me you do not have always. Now a great many of the Jews knew that He was there; and they came, not for Jesus’ sake only, but that they might also see Lazarus, whom He had raised from the dead. But the chief priests plotted to put Lazarus to death also, because on account of him many of the Jews went away and believed in Jesus. The next day a great multitude that had come to the feast, when they heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem, took branches of palm trees and went out to meet Him, and cried out: Hosanna! ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the LORD!’ The King of Israel!” Then Jesus, when He had found a young donkey, sat on it; as it is written: Fear not, daughter of Zion; Behold, your King is coming, Sitting on a donkey’s colt.” His disciples did not understand these things at first; but when Jesus was glorified, then they remembered that these things were written about Him and that they had done these things to Him. Therefore the people, who were with Him when He called Lazarus out of his tomb and raised him from the dead, bore witness. For this reason the people also met Him, because they heard that He had done this sign.

 

GET OUT OF HELL FREE  by Fr. Stephen Freeman

The Saturday before Palm Sunday is known as Lazarus Saturday among the Orthodox, and they celebrate Christ raising him from the dead just prior to His entrance into Jerusalem (gospel of John). It is a feast that offers something of a preview of Christ’s resurrection, and a foretaste of the General Resurrection at the End of the Age. Some years back I sat in a cave that is purported to be the grave of Lazarus. I could not help but think of him – but of him in Hades rather than the tomb. It is said in the Fathers that when Christ raised him from the dead, it was necessary for Him to say, “Lazarus, come forth!” For had He only said, “Come forth!” all of the dead would have risen before their time. It’s a thought that I like a lot.

 It is also, however, a thought that has occurred to Hades itself, at least in the hymnody of the Church: I implore you, Lazarus, said Hell, Rise up, depart quickly from my bonds and be gone. It is better for me to lament bitterly for the loss of one, rather than of all those whom I swallowed in my hunger.

Why do you delay, Lazarus? cried Hell. Your Friend stands calling to you: ‘Come out.’ Go, then, and I too shall feel relief. For since I swallowed you, all other food is loathsome to me.

 O Lazarus, why do you not rise up swiftly? cried Hell below, lamenting. Why do you not run immediately from this place? Lest Christ take prisoner the others, after raising you. (From the Canon of Lazarus Saturday)

                   It is as if when Christ says, “Come forth!” Hell cries, “Get out!”

 Most of the Orthodox hymns surrounding Christ’s death and resurrection (and Lazarus’ as well) center on the notion of the “Harrowing of Hell.” The object of the Cross is not the wrath of God, but the death and confinement of man. It is the virtual non-existence that holds us in death that is trampled down by the death of Christ.

The punishment theories of the atonement have a way of mixing moral themes into Christ’s death and resurrection. They are about Christ’s payment for the moral debt of our sins. Somehow, something is terribly askew in such meditations. The utter graciousness and even gratuitous character of Christ’s victory is overlooked.

                  I am aware of the Biblical passages that speak of the resurrection to damnation as well as the coming judgment. But I always have the sense that those who dwell on such things are somehow afraid that Christ might accidentally forgive someone who should not have been forgiven. Be careful! Someone might get away with something!

                  When I ponder the atonement, the work accomplished by Christ’s death and resurrection, I tend to think of the imagery of a prison break – a really BIG prison break. When the doors are opened every fellow-prisoner is your friend. You make a run for it because it’s your chance and the sudden generosity that has found you is likely to spill over to everyone and everything. It is like the childhood cry that ends the game of Hide and Seek: “Olly, Olly, Oxen free!”

                  In truth, despite all of our responsibility for sin, we are largely its victims. We do not begin our lives in Paradise, but in a world in which everyone is broken and distorted. Those who carry out crimes are most likely to have been victims first. We do to others what has been done to us. And sometimes it goes to horrendous extremes. We are psychopaths and sociopaths, addicts and sinners, the children of a world gone wrong.

And though there is help, even salvation for us in this life, many never seem to find it, or being found by it, fail to understand its significance. And now they lie among the dead, bound in their sins, brought down to Hades for their crimes.

It is this fellowship of criminals and sinners that the good bishop, Melito of Sardis, seems to have had in mind when he penned a Paschal homily around the year 160 ad. It is wonderfully primitive in its vision, speaking with a concern that continues to echo in the language of the Orthodox faith. It is hopeful and bold, though perhaps discouraging for those who fear that someone might get off too lightly. He says of Christ in Hades:

 

“[Christ] rose up from the dead, and cried aloud with this voice: “Who is he who contends with me? Let him stand in opposition to me. I set the condemned man free; I gave the dead man life; I raised up the one who had been entombed. Who is my opponent?”

“I,” He says, “am the Christ. I am the one who destroyed death, and triumphed over the enemy, and trampled Hades under foot, and bound the strong one, and carried off man to the heights of heaven. “I,” he says, “am the Christ.” “Therefore, come, all families of men, you who have been befouled with sins, and receive forgiveness for your sins. I am your forgiveness. I am the passover of your salvation. I am the lamb which was sacrificed for you. I am your ransom. I am your light. I am your Savior. I am your resurrection. I am your king. I am leading you up to the heights of heaven. I will show you the eternal Father. I will raise you up by my right hand.” This is the one who made the heavens and the earth, and who in the beginning created man, who was proclaimed through the law and prophets, who became human through the virgin, who was hanged upon a tree, who was buried in the earth, who was resurrected from the dead, and who ascended to the heights of heaven, who sits at the right hand of the Father, who has authority to judge and to save everything, through whom the Father created everything from the beginning of the world to the end of the age.

This is the alpha and the omega. This is the beginning and the end–an indescribable beginning and an incomprehensible end. This is the Christ. This is the king. This is Jesus. This is the general. This is the Lord. This is the one who rose up from the dead. This is the one who sits at the right hand of the Father. He bears the Father and is borne by the Father, to whom be the glory and the power forever. Amen.

Amen. Indeed.

Announcements:

-Today: Please sign up to help with the agape meal – see hall bulletin board

-SEE THE UPDATED Lenten Schedule online orthodoxcrossingville.org

-The Sunday School has Orthodox pendants available to raise funds for camp (see table at entrance of hall).

-TODAY Chocolate 3-bar crosses from Romolos are here 3$ each-- proceeds benefit the Lenten alms box- See Jane Cap

-The Bookstore has several different Pascha cards as well as egg wraps. (see Jane)

-Youth and Family Bowling Rescheduled for Sunday April 28th Mt. Lebonon PA 4-7pm

-Mission Fundraiser – May 22nd 7-11pm Voodoo Brewery

 

Missions Trip- June 15th-19th

in West Brownesville PA.

See Fr. Daniel for more details.

 

St Sava’s Orthodox Youth Camp July 26th-August 1st

 

All American Council July 20th -24th 2015

Atlanta, Georgia (in conjunction w/FOCA Convention)

 

 

HOLY WEEK SCHEDULE

Holy Monday April 6th

PreSanctified Liturgy (Discussion on the Bodiless Powers of Heaven)          9:30am

Bridegroom Matins                                                                                         6:00pm

 

Holy Tuesday April 7th

PreSanctified Liturgy     (Discussion on St John the forerunner)                   9:30am

Bridegroom Matins                                                                                             6:00pm

 

Holy Wednesday April 8th

PreSanctified  Liturgy (Discussion on the Betrayal of the Lord)                      9:30am

 

Holy Thursday April 9th

Vesperal Liturgy of St. Basil the Great                                                          9:30am

The Holy Passion of the Lord      (With reading of the 12 Gospels)          6:00pm

                                        

Holy Friday April 10th Strict Fast Day

Royal Hours                                                                                     9:00am

Vespers and the procession of the Burial Cloth of the Lord                           4:00pm

Matins of Holy Saturday (Lamentations)                                                       6:00pm

 

Holy Saturday April 11th

Vesperal Liturgy of St. Basil the Great                                                 9:30am

Midnight Office                                                                                  11:30pm

 

GREAT AND HOLY PASHCA

Matins                                                                                               12:00mid

Pashcal Divine Liturgy, Blessing of Baskets, Agape Feast                            1:00am                                                                        

Pashcal Vespers                                                                                                   4:00pm

 

Bright MONDAY

Divine Liturgy                                                                                  9:30 am

 

 

 

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Rev. Daniel Mathewson –Rector

March 29th, 2015        

 

Parish phone: 814-734-3801

25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 

www.orthodoxcrossingville.org

 

Christ is in our midst!...He is and always shall be!

 Sunday of St Mary of Egypt

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS: Valentina Emelianow, Michael Gresh, Karen Raydo, Vernon and Mary Baldwin, Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Timothy Alberti, Margaret Ristvey, Tanya Ferra, Christina Harmon, Debbie  Kirzmanich, Megan and Sean Clayton River, Gabriel, Adaline, Evelyn… Inquirers and Catechumens David Angelini, Jeremiah Stump, William Shontz, Wesly Shontz…. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko, Claudia Sukel… military servers…Greg Hargett….our seminarian….Tristan Gall and his fiancée Mary… Departed…John Wasko, Raymond, Maggie.

 

Welcome Archbishop Melchesidek

Eis pollá etē, Déspota!

(Many years to you, Master!)

                  Greeting Clergy in Person. When we address Deacons or Priests, we should use the title "Father." Bishops we should address as "Your Grace." Though all Bishops (including Patriarchs) are equal in the Orthodox Church, they do have different administrative duties and honors that accrue to their rank in this sense. Thus, "Your Eminence" is the proper title for Bishops with suffragans or assistant Bishops, Metropolitans, and most Archbishops (among the exceptions to this rule is the Archbishop of Athens, who is addressed as "Your Beatitude"). "Your Beatitude" is the proper title for Patriarchs (except for the Œcumenical Patriarch in Constantinople, who is addressed as "Your All—Holiness"). When we approach an Orthodox Presbyter or Bishop (but not a Deacon), we make a bow by reaching down and touching the floor with our right hand, place our right hand over the left (palms upward), and say: "Bless, Father" (or "Bless, Your Grace," or "Bless, Your Eminence," etc.). The Priest or Bishop then answers, "May the Lord bless you," blesses us with the Sign of the Cross, and places his right hand in our hands. We kiss then his hand.

                  We should understand that when the Priest or Bishop blesses us, he forms his fingers to represent the Christogram "ICXC" a traditional abbreviation of the Greek words for "Jesus Christ" (i.e., the first and last letters of each of the words "IHCOYC XRICTOC"). Thus, the Priest's blessing is in the Name of Christ, as he emphasizes in his response to the believer's request for a blessing. Other responses to this request are used by many clergy, but the antiquity and symbolism of the tradition which we have presented are compelling arguments for its use. We should also note that the reason that a lay person kisses the hand of a Priest or Bishop is to show respect to his Apostolic office. More importantly, however, since both hold the Holy Mysteries in their hands during the Divine Liturgy, we show respect to the Holy Eucharist when we kiss their hands. In fact, Saint John Chrysostomos once said that if one were to meet an Orthodox Priest walking along with an Angel, that he should greet the Priest first and kiss his hand, since that hand has touched the Body and Blood of our Lord. For this latter reason, we do not normally kiss the hand of a Deacon. [98] While a Deacon in the Orthodox Church holds the first level of the Priesthood (Deacon, Presbyter, Bishop), his service does not entail blessing the Mysteries. When we take leave of a Priest or Bishop, we should again ask for a blessing, just as we did when we first greeted him.

       In the case of married clergy, the wife of a Priest or Deacon is also informally addressed with a title “little Mother”. Since the Mystery of Marriage binds a Priest and his wife together as "one flesh," the wife shares in a sense her husband's Priesthood. This does not, of course, mean that she has the very Grace of the Priesthood or its office, but the dignity of her husband's service certainly accrues to her.  The various titles used by the national Churches are listed below. The Greek titles, since they have English correspondents, are perhaps the easiest to use in the West: Greek: Presbytera (Pres—vee——ra)
Russian:
 Matushka (—toosh—ka)
Serbian: Papadiya (Pa——dee—ya)
Ukrainian:
 Panimatushka (Pa—nee——toosh—ka), or Panimatka (Pa—nee—mát—ka)

 

FIFTH SUNDAY OF LENT — Tone 1. St Mary of Egypt. Hieromartyr Mark, Bishop of Arethusa, Martyr Cyril the Deacon, of Heliopolis, and others who suffered under Julian the Apostate (ca. 364). Ven. John, Anchorite, of Egypt (4th c.). St. Eustathius the Confessor, Bishop of Bithynia (9th c.).

 

Hebrews 9:11-14 (Epistle)

But Christ came as High Priest of the good things to come, with the greater and more perfect tabernacle not made with hands, that is, not of this creation.Not with the blood of goats and calves, but with His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption.For if the blood of bulls and goats and the ashes of a heifer, sprinkling the unclean, sanctifies for the purifying of the flesh,how much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?

 

Galatians 3:23-29 (Epistle, Saint)

But before faith came, we were kept under guard by the law, kept for the faith which would afterward be revealed.Therefore the law was our tutor to bring us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith.But after faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor.For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.


Mark 10:32-45 (Gospel)

Now they were on the road, going up to Jerusalem, and Jesus was going before them; and they were amazed. And as they followed they were afraid. Then He took the twelve aside again and began to tell them the things that would happen to Him:Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be betrayed to the chief priests and to the scribes; and they will condemn Him to death and deliver Him to the Gentiles;and they will mock Him, and scourge Him, and spit on Him, and kill Him. And the third day He will rise again.Then James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came to Him, saying, “Teacher, we want You to do for us whatever we ask.”And He said to them, “What do you want Me to do for you?”  They said to Him, “Grant us that we may sit, one on Your right hand and the other on Your left, in Your glory.”But Jesus said to them, “You do not know what you ask. Are you able to drink the cup that I drink, and be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with?”  They said to Him, “We are able.” So Jesus said to them, “You will indeed drink the cup that I drink, and with the baptism I am baptized with you will be baptized;but to sit on My right hand and on My left is not Mine to give, but it is for those for whom it is prepared.And when the ten heard it, they began to be greatly displeased with James and John. But Jesus called them to Himself and said to them, “You know that those who are considered rulers over the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them. Yet it shall not be so among you; but whoever desires to become great among you shall be your servant. And whoever of you desires to be first shall be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.

 

Luke 7:36-50 (Gospel, Saint)

Then one of the Pharisees asked Him to eat with him. And He went to the Pharisee’s house, and sat down to eat.And behold, a woman in the city who was a sinner, when she knew that Jesus sat at the table in the Pharisee’s house, brought an alabaster flask of fragrant oil,and stood at His feet behind Him weeping; and she began to wash His feet with her tears, and wiped them with the hair of her head; and she kissed His feet and anointed them with the fragrant oil.Now when the Pharisee who had invited Him saw this, he spoke to himself, saying, “This Man, if He were a prophet, would know who and what manner of woman this is who is touching Him, for she is a sinner.”And Jesus answered and said to him, “Simon, I have something to say to you.” So he said, “Teacher, say it.”There was a certain creditor who had two debtors. One owed five hundred denarii, and the other fifty.And when they had nothing with which to repay, he freely forgave them both. Tell Me, therefore, which of them will love him more?Simon answered and said, “I suppose the one whom he forgave more.” And He said to him, “You have rightly judged.”Then He turned to the woman and said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I entered your house; you gave Me no water for My feet, but she has washed My feet with her tears and wiped them with the hair of her head.You gave Me no kiss, but this woman has not ceased to kiss My feet since the time I came in.You did not anoint My head with oil, but this woman has anointed My feet with fragrant oil.Therefore I say to you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven, for she loved much. But to whom little is forgiven, the same loves little.Then He said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.”And those who sat at the table with Him began to say to themselves, “Who is this who even forgives sins?”  Then He said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you. Go in peace.”

 

Announcements:

*Today a dinner will be held in honor of our beloved Archbishop following the Divine Liturgy

-Today - Pysanky Egg Making continues during Coffee Hour

-SEE THE UPDATED Lenten Schedule online orthodoxcrossingville.org

-The Sunday School has Orthodox pendants available to raise funds for camp (see table at entrance of hall).

-Chocolate 3-bar crosses from Romolos will be here on Palm Sunday. 3$ each-- proceeds benefit the Lenten alms box. 

-The Bookstore has several different Pascha cards as well as egg wraps. (see Jane)

-Youth and Family Bowling Rescheduled for Sunday April 28th Mt. Lebonon PA 4-7pm

-Flowers today are given in memory of Maggie Clayton. May her Memory be eternal!

-Mission Fundraiser – May 22nd 7-11pm Voodoo Brewery

 

Missions Trip- June 15th-19th

in West Brownesville PA.

See Fr. Daniel for more details.

 

St Sava’s Orthodox Youth Camp July 26th-August 1st

 

All American Council July 20th -24th 2015

Atlanta, Georgia (in conjunction w/FOCA Convention)

 

 

UPDATED SAINTS PETER AND PAUL ORTHODOX CHURCH

LENTEN SCHEDULE FOR 2015

 

 

Week 5                           ST. MARY OF EGYPT

 

Sun. Mar. 29th Divine Liturgy with His Eminence Melchesidek     9:00am

 

Holy Unction-  St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral (Allison Park)     6:00pm

Wed. Apr. 1st   Presanctified Liturgy (Discussion on Hagiography) 6:00pm

Sat. Apr.4th LAZARUS SATURDAY LITURGY (with Baptisms and Chrismations)  9:30am

                    Great Vespers - w/ Blessing of palms and willows                         6:00pm

Sunday April 5th

The Lord’s Entrance into Jerusalem (Sunday of the Palms)

Hours 9:15 - Liturgy 9:30am


 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Rev. Daniel Mathewson –Rector

March 22nd, 2015         

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801

25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 www.orthodoxcrossingville.org

 Christ is in our midst!... He is and always shall be!

 

Sunday of St John of the Ladder

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS: Valentina Emelianow, Michael Gresh, Karen Raydo, Vernon and Mary Baldwin, Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Timothy Alberti, Margaret Ristvey, Tanya Ferra, Christina Harmon, Debbie  Kirzmanich, Megan and Sean Clayton and family, Evelyn… Inquirers and Catechumens David Angelini, Jeremiah Stump, Bill and William Shontz and family…. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko, Claudia Sukel… military servers…Greg Hargett….our seminarian….Tristan Gall and his fiancée Mary… Departed…John Wasko, Raymond, Maggie Clayton.

 TODAY"S SCRIPTURE

Hebrews 6:13-20 (Epistle) 

For when God made a promise to Abraham, because He could swear by no one greater, He swore by Himself,saying, “Surely blessing I will bless you, and multiplying I will multiply you.”And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise.For men indeed swear by the greater, and an oath for confirmation is for them an end of all dispute.Thus God, determining to show more abundantly to the heirs of promise the immutability of His counsel, confirmed it by an oath,that by two immutable things, in which it is impossible for God to lie, we might have strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold of the hope set before us.This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast, and which enters the Presence behind the veil,where the forerunner has entered for us, even Jesus, having become High Priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek. 

Ephesians 5:9-19 (Epistle, Saint)

(for the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness, righteousness, and truth), finding out what is acceptable to the Lord. And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them. For it is shameful even to speak of those things which are done by them in secret. But all things that are exposed are made manifest by the light, for whatever makes manifest is light. Therefore He says: “Awake, you who sleep, Arise from the dead, And Christ will give you light.” See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is. And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord,

 Mark 9:17-31 (Gospel)

Then one of the crowd answered and said, “Teacher, I brought You my son, who has a mute spirit. And wherever it seizes him, it throws him down; he foams at the mouth, gnashes his teeth, and becomes rigid. So I spoke to Your disciples, that they should cast it out, but they could not. He answered him and said, “O faithless generation, how long shall I be with you? How long shall I bear with you? Bring him to Me.” Then they brought him to Him. And when he saw Him, immediately the spirit convulsed him, and he fell on the ground and wallowed, foaming at the mouth. So He asked his father, “How long has this been happening to him?” And he said, “From childhood. And often he has thrown him both into the fire and into the water to destroy him. But if You can do anything, have compassion on us and help us. Jesus said to him, “If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes.” Immediately the father of the child cried out and said with tears, “Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!” When Jesus saw that the people came running together, He rebuked the unclean spirit, saying to it: “Deaf and dumb spirit, I command you, come out of him and enter him no more!” Then the spirit cried out, convulsed him greatly, and came out of him. And he became as one dead, so that many said, “He is dead.” But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him up, and he arose. And when He had come into the house, His disciples asked Him privately, “Why could we not cast it out?” So He said to them, “This kind can come out by nothing but prayer and fasting.” Then they departed from there and passed through Galilee, and He did not want anyone to know it. For He taught His disciples and said to them, “The Son of Man is being betrayed into the hands of men, and they will kill Him. And after He is killed, He will rise the third day.”

 Matthew 4:25-5:12 (Gospel, Saint) 

Great multitudes followed Him – from Galilee, and from Decapolis, Jerusalem, Judea, and beyond the Jordan. And seeing the multitudes, He went up on a mountain, and when He was seated His disciples came to Him. Then He opened His mouth and taught them, saying: Blessed are the poor in spirit, For theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, For they shall be comforted. Blessed are the meek, For they shall inherit the earth. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, For they shall be filled. Blessed are the merciful, For they shall obtain mercy. Blessed are the pure in heart, For they shall see God. Blessed are the peacemakers, For they shall be called sons of God. Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, For theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake. Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

On Wednesday March 18th    -  Fr. Thomas Hopko Reposed in the Lord.   May his Memory be eternal!

 

Announcements: Today! – William and Wesly Shontz will be received into the                                                                                                Catechumenate before the service. Please welcome them.

-Today - Pysanky Egg Making continues during Coffee Hour

-Today- Cemetery Committee Meeting (meet in Library)

-A short Parish Council Meeting will be held today- about the ACC (Next regular mtg. Apr. 22nd)

-SEE THE UPDATED Lenten Schedule online orthodoxcrossingville.org

-The Sunday School has Orthodox pendants available to raise funds for camp (see table at entrance of hall).

-Chocolate 3-bar crosses from Romolos will be here on Palm Sunday. 4$ each-- proceeds benefit the Lenten alms box. 

-The Bookstore has several different Pascha cards as well as egg wraps. (see Jane)

-The deadline to submit your child(ren’s) name for Camp this year will be TODAY March 22, 2015. Please contact Suzanne Natalie. 

-Youth and Family Bowling Rescheduled for Sunday April 28th

-Maggie Clayton's (Margaret Susan Clayton's) Funeral Mass and Memorial will be held Friday the 27th of March at 11am at Saint Anthony's Church in Cambridge Springs. A luncheon will follow at Saints Peter and Paul OCA Church Hall. All are welcome. Thank you everyone for your diligent prayers for Maggie.

 

UPDATED SAINTS PETER AND PAUL ORTHODOX CHURCH

LENTEN SCHEDULE FOR 2015

 Week 4                                        ST. JOHN OF THE LADDER                

 Sun. Mar. 22nd    Panakhida in Memory of Fr. Thomas Hopko Elwood City-           5:00pm

Tues. Mar. 24th  Vesperal Liturgy - Annunciation of the Mother of God                    6:00pm

Fri. Mar. 27th PreSanctified Liturgy /Bring a dish to pass (Church History class)      6:00pm

Sat. Mar. 28th     Great Vespers                                                                                 6:00pm

Week 5                                      ST. MARY OF EGYPT

 Sun. Mar. 29th  Divine Liturgy with His Eminence Melchesidek                            9:00am

     *We will have a pot luck dinner in his honor with the Sunday School Children greeting him in the hall. Fr. Daniel will be presenting him with a special gift at the end of the Divine Liturgy.

   Holy Unction-  St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral (Allison Park)                            6:00pm

Wed. Apr. 1st   Presanctified Liturgy (Discussion on Hagiography) 6:00pm

 

Protopresbyter Thomas Hopko

March 18, 2015

ELLWOOD CITY, PA [OCA]

Protopresbyter Thomas Hopko, Dean Emeritus of Saint Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary, Crestwood, NY, and noted Orthodox Christian priest, theologian, preacher, and speaker, fell asleep in the Lord on the afternoon of March 18, 2015.
                  Father Thomas was the beloved husband of Matushka Anne [Schmemann] Hopko. They were married on June 9, 1963. Together, Father Thomas and Anne are the parents of five children, sixteen grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren.
                  Thomas John Hopko was born in Endicott, NY, on March 28, 1939, the third child and only son of John J. Hopko and Anna [Zapotocky] Hopko. He was baptized and raised in Saint Mary’s Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Greek Catholic Church and educated in Endicott public schools, graduating from Union-Endicott High School in 1956.
                  Father Thomas graduated from Fordham University in 1960 with a bachelor’s degree in Russian studies. He graduated with a theological degree from Saint Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary in 1963, from Duquesne University with a master’s degree in philosophy in 1969, and earned his doctorate degree in theology from Fordham University in 1982.
                  Ordained to the Holy Priesthood in August 1963, Father Thomas served the following parishes as pastor: Saint John the Baptist Church, Warren, OH (1963–1968); Saint Gregory the Theologian Church, Wappingers Falls, NY (1968–1978); and Saint Nicholas Church, Jamaica Estates, NY (1978–1983). Father Thomas was honored with the clerical rank of Archpriest in 1970 and the rank of Protopresbyter in 1995.
                  Beginning in 1968, Father Thomas began his long service to Saint Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary. Over the years, Father Thomas held the following positions: Lecturer in Doctrine and Pastoral Theology, 1968–1972; Assistant Professor of Dogmatic Theology, 1972–1983; Associate Professor of Dogmatic Theology, 1983–1991; Professor of Dogmatic Theology, 1991–1992; Dean, Rector of Three Hierarchs Chapel, and Professor of Dogmatic Theology, 1992–2002.
                  During his years of priestly ministry, Father Thomas authored numerous books and articles. Most well known of these publications is The Orthodox Faith: An Elementary Handbook on the Orthodox Church. A prolific speaker and preacher, he spoke at conferences, retreats, public lectures, and Church gatherings of all kinds, many of which were recorded. Father Thomas performed countless duties on behalf of the Orthodox Church in America, including representing the Church at intra-Orthodox gatherings and ecumenical meetings.
                  Upon retirement, Father Thomas and Anne moved to Ellwood City, PA, where they lived near the Orthodox Monastery of the Transfiguration, and Father Thomas began a new ministry: internet-based Orthodox Christian radio talks. Since 2008, Father Thomas had produced well over 400 podcasts for Ancient Faith Radio.
                  Father Thomas exercised untiring and loving pastoral care on behalf many who sought him out for spiritual guidance. His greatest desire was that every person would respond to these words of Jesus Christ: “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28).
                  Father Thomas is survived by his wife, Matushka Anne, and their five children: Archpriest John Hopko and his wife Macrina, of Terryville, CT; Juliana and husband Gregory Thetford, of Ellwood City, PA; Catherine and husband Raymond Mandell, of Clearfield, PA; Mary and husband Archpriest Nicholas Solak, of East Stroudsburg, PA; and Alexandra and husband Joseph Sedor, of Ellicott City, MD. He is also survived by two sisters, Mary Ann Macko of Endwell, NY, and Barbara McPherson of Sayre, PA and Frostproof, FL. Additionally, Father Thomas is survived by 16 grandchildren and three great-grandchildren, as well as many, many other dear relatives, colleagues, and friends.
                  All services and visitations will be at the Orthodox Monastery of the Transfiguration, Ellwood City, PA. Father Thomas’ body will be ushered into the monastery church at 10:00 a.m. on Friday morning, March 20. The Liturgy of the Presanctified Gifts will be celebrated at 11:00 a.m. Visitation will continue throughout the day on Friday, with the celebration of Matins for the Departed at 6:00 p.m. followed by a Panikhida at 7:30 p.m. Visitation will close at 9:00 p.m. that evening.
                  On Saturday, March 21, the Memorial Divine Liturgy will be celebrated at 9:00 a.m. followed by a Panikhida. Visitation will continue throughout the day. The Vigil on Saturday evening will begin at 5:30 p.m.  Visitation will close at 9:00 p.m. that evening.
                  On Sunday, March 22, the Divine Liturgy will be celebrated at 9:30 a.m. followed by visitation throughout the afternoon. Vespers will be celebrated at 5:00 p.m. followed by a Panikhida at 6:00 p.m., with visitation continuing until 9:00 p.m.
                  On Monday, March 23, the Funeral Service for a Priest will be celebrated at 10:00 a.m., followed by interment in the monastery cemetery and a memorial meal. 
                  Father Thomas’s family wishes to thank all those who ministered to him so lovingly during his long final illness. Special thanks are extended to Mother Christophora, Abbess, and the entire sisterhood of the Orthodox Monastery of the Transfiguration for their constant support and help, Archpriest Michael and Matushka Susanne Senyo; Protodeacon Michael Wusylko, M.D.; and Good Samaritan Hospice.
                  In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be given to Saint Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary, Crestwood, NY; the Orthodox Monastery of the Transfiguration, Ellwood City, PA; Ancient Faith Radio and Good Samaritan Hospice of Concordia, Wexford, PA.

May Father Thomas’ memory be eternal!

From the Ladder of Divine Ascent:

Some people living carelessly in the world have asked me: ‘We have wives (and husbands) and are beset with social cares, and how can we lead the solitary life?’ I replied to them: ‘Do all the good you can; do not speak evil of anyone; do not steal from anyone; do not lie to anyone; do not be arrogant towards anyone; do not hate anyone; do not be absent from the divine services; be compassionate to the needy; do not offend anyone; do not wreck another person's domestic happiness, and be content with what your own wives (or husbands) can give you. If you behave in this way, you will not be far from the Kingdom of Heaven.’” (Step 1, Section 21) –

“A servant of the Lord is he who in body stands before men, but in mind knocks at Heaven with prayer.” (Step 4, Section 102)

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Rev. Daniel Mathewson –Rector

March 15th, 2015         

 

Parish phone: 814-734-3801

25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 

www.orthodoxcrossingville.org

 

Christ is in our midst!...

He is and always shall be!

Sunday of the Blessed Cross

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel.

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS: Valentina Emelianow, Michael Gresh, Karen Raydo, Vernon and Mary Baldwin, Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Timothy Alberti, Margaret Ristvey, Tanya Ferra, Christina Harmon, Debbie  Kirzmanich, Megan and Sean Clayton and family, Evelyn… Inquirers and Catechumens David Angelini, Jeremiah Stump, Bill and Shonlee Shontz and family…. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Suscheck, Andy Yurasko, Claudia Sukel… military servers…Greg Hargett….our seminarian….Tristan Gall and his fiancée Mary…Our newly Illumined… Jessica (Anna), Olivia (Helen), Nikolas, and Natalia…Our Newly Wed…James and Natalia (Tuktik) Gall…Departed…John Wasko, Maggie Clayton.

 

Announcements:

  • Today! – Mission Vespers- St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral - 5:00pm
  • Today - Pysanky Egg Making begins during Coffee Hour
  • Next Saturday… Sunday School Youth Retreat 2-5pm
  • Cemetery Committee Meeting Mar. 22 (meet in Library)
  •  SEE THE UPDATED Lenten Schedule online orthodoxcrossingville.org
  • The Sunday School has Orthodox pendants available to raise funds for camp (see table at entrance of hall).
  • The deadline to submit your child(ren’s) name for Camp this year will be March 22, 2015. Please contact Suzanne Natalie. 
  • No Parish Council Meeting this month (Next mtg. Apr. 22nd)
  • Youth and Family Bowling Rescheduled for Sunday April 28th
  • Maggie Clayton's (Margaret Susan Clayton's) Funeral Mass and Memorial will be held Friday the 27th of March at 11am at Saint Anthony's Church in Cambridge Springs. A luncheon will follow at Saints Peter and Paul OCA Church Hall. All are welcome. Thank you everyone for your diligent prayers for Maggie ~ It always gave her so much encouragement to know that the people of our parish were praying for her continually.

Hebrews 4:14-5:6 (Epistle)

Seeing then that we have a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need. For every high priest taken from among men is appointed for men in things pertaining to God, that he may offer both gifts and sacrifices for sins. He can have compassion on those who are ignorant and going astray, since he himself is also subject to weakness. Because of this he is required as for the people, so also for himself, to offer sacrifices for sins. And no man takes this honor to himself, but he who is called by God, just as Aaron was. So also Christ did not glorify Himself to become High Priest, but it was He who said to Him: “You are My Son, Today I have begotten You.” As He also says in another place: “You are a priest forever According to the order of Melchizedek”.

 

Mark 8:34-9:1 (Gospel)

When He had called the people to Himself, with His disciples also, He said to them, “Whoever desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel’s will save it.For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul?Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him the Son of Man also will be ashamed when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels.And He said to them, “Assuredly, I say to you that there are some standing here who will not taste death till they see the kingdom of God present with power.”

 

UPDATED SAINTS PETER AND PAUL ORTHODOX CHURCH

LENTEN SCHEDULE FOR 2015

Week 3                                 THE VENERABLE HOLY CROSS

 Sun. Mar. 15th              Mission Vespers- St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral  -4:00pm

Wed. Mar. 18th   Presanctified Liturgy (Discussion of the Holy Psalter ) 6:00pm

Fri. Mar. 20th               Akathist to the Lord                               10:00am

Sat. Mar. 21st     Sunday School Youth Retreat 2:00pm w/Great Vespers 5pm

                                  (Fr. Will hear confessions)

 

 

Week 4                                 ST. JOHN OF THE LADDER                

 Sun. Mar. 22nd    Mission Vespers- St. John the Baptist Church  (NewKe) 4:00pm                                                             

Tues. Mar. 24th Vesperal Liturgy - Annunciation of the Mother of God    6:00pm

Fri. Mar. 27th PreSanctified Liturgy /Bring a dish to pass (Church History class) 6:00pm

Sat. Mar. 28th    Great Vespers                                                                            6:00pm

 

 Week 5                               ST. MARY OF EGYPT

 Sun. Mar. 29th   Divine Liturgy with His Eminence Melchesidek             9:00am

     *We will have a pot luck dinner in his honor with the Sunday School Children greeting him in the hall. Fr. Daniel will be presenting him with a special gift at the end of the Divine Liturgy.

             Holy Unction-  St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral (Allison Park)    4:00pm

Wed. Apr. 1st   Presanctified Liturgy (Discussion on Hagiography)           6:00pm

 Can You Forgive Someone Else’s Enemies?  By Fr. Stephen Freeman                 

  •                   I have written from time to time about the concept expressed in Dostoevsky’s Brothers Karamazov, “Forgive everyone for everything.” It is a quote taken from the fictional Elder Zosima, but it is certainly a sentiment well within the bounds of Orthodox thought. I have recently been challenged in several places by people arguing that we cannot forgive those who have not sinned against us – that this right belongs only to the victims involved. I believe this is profoundly untrue. But to understand why, it is necessary to look deeply into the meaning and function of forgiveness.

                      What happens when we forgive? A very important example is found in St. Mark’s gospel:

                      Then they came to Him, bringing a paralytic who was carried by four men. And when they could not come near Him because of the crowd, they uncovered the roof where He was. So when they had broken through, they let down the bed on which the paralytic was lying. When Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paralytic, “Son, your sins are forgiven you.” And some of the scribes were sitting there and reasoning in their hearts, “Why does this Man speak blasphemies like this? Who can forgive sins but God alone?” But immediately, when Jesus perceived in His spirit that they reasoned thus within themselves, He said to them, “Why do you reason about these things in your hearts? “Which is easier, to say to the paralytic, ’Your sins are forgiven you,’ or to say,’ Arise, take up your bed and walk’? “But that you may know that the Son of Man has power on earth to forgive sins”– He said to the paralytic, “I say to you, arise, take up your bed, and go to your house.”  (Mar 2:3-11)

                      What sin did Jesus have in mind when he forgave the paralytic? Had the man done something wrong to bring a punishment of paralysis upon himself? There is no such indication. Indeed when Christ healed the man born blind He was asked who had sinned, the man or his parents such that he was born that way. Christ says, “Neither.” But it would seem clear from the greater context of the gospels that Christ could have said to the man, “Your sins are forgiven,” and he would have received his sight. There is a simple conclusion to be drawn from this: forgiveness is not, strictly speaking, the remission of a legal debt or wrong that has been done. It is far greater.

    There are parallel passages in the gospels regarding the forgiveness of sins:

     

                      If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained. (Jn. 20:23 NKJ)

                      and

                      Whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven. (Mat 16:19 NKJ)

                     

                      Forgiving is “loosing.” Refusing to forgive is “binding.” The imagery of loosing and binding helps move the imagination away from a legal construction. When we sin, or even when we are involved in sin, we become bound. There is a binding that occurs because we ourselves were the cause of the sin. There is a binding that occurs because we ourselves were the victim of a sin. There is a binding that occurs because we simply witness the sin. There is even a form of binding that occurs to the whole of humanity because of the diminishment of even one of its members. If everyone were somehow only responsible for their own actions the world would be quite different. As it is, the action of one involves the binding of all. Adam’s sin has left us bound ever since. We are not being held legally responsible for Adam’s action. We are existentially and ontologically bound by Adam’s sin. Through his sin, death enters the world, and all men die (Ro. 5:12).

                      And just as there is a binding that occurs in each of these things, so there is a loosing that is appropriate to each. Obviously, the injury that a victim suffers binds them far tighter to their enemy than someone who is at a remove. And such a loosing is greater and represents a greater spiritual effort. But that effort is itself impeded by the refusal of all around to share in the loosing. And just as the refusal of all around impedes the loosing, so the participation of others makes the loosing easier.

    These things are difficult to understand if we insist that all of reality is, at best, psychological or legal. But the death of Adam is not shared in a merely psychological or legal manner: we all die. And the resurrection of the Second Adam is shared in a manner that encompasses the whole of creation. The Paschal Canon contains the verse: “Let us call brothers even those that hate us, and forgive all by the resurrection.” It is a perfectly strange thing to sing unless we understand the true nature of forgiveness – and how it is that the Resurrection of Christ makes it possible for us to forgive everyone for everything.

                      Of course it jars us to hear that someone dares to forgive the killer of a child. “Only the child could offer such forgiveness!” These words were spoken by Ivan Karamazov as he professed his refusal of God’s mercy. He demanded justice for an injured child. Forgiveness that works by justice is no forgiveness at all. Forgiveness is not the child saying, “What you did to me is ok.” It is loosing the bonds that are forged in sin.

                      We often think that not forgiving someone is only destructive for them. But the lack of forgiveness is often equally devastating for their victim as well. I had opportunity some years ago to be involved with a Victim-Offenders Reconciliation Program. In it, mediators helped work to bring restitution and reconciliation for various crimes. I eventually became involved with efforts of ministry with families that had suffered a murder (as had my family). The darkness of the crime extends mercilessly beyond the victim alone. Forgiveness is the only way forward.

    It is striking how utterly central forgiveness was to the ministry of Christ. It dominates almost everything He did. Many observe that He kept company with “sinners.” But He first and foremost forgave them. Their loyalty and devotion to Him flowed from the spiritual loosing that they found in Him. A woman “who was a sinner,” bathes Christ’s feet with her tears and anoints them with fragrant spices. Those around Him are offended. But He says:

                      Therefore I say to you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven, for she loved much. But to whom little is forgiven, the same loves little. (Luk 7:47 NKJ)

                     

                      I cannot make your enemy be reconciled to you, nor can I do for you what you alone must do. Your enemy is yours to forgive. But he is mine as well, and the bond of unforgiven sin that links my life to his is still mine to loose. It is for this reason that we are bidden in the wisdom of the Fathers to forgive everyone for everything. Anything less is a bondage of destruction. Forgive all by the resurrection.

                                                         

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Rev. Daniel Mathewson –Rector                  March 1st,  2015         

Parish phone: 814-734-3801

25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

  Christ is in our midst!... He is and always shall be!    Glory to Jesus Christ!...  Glory Forever!

Sunday of ORTHODOXY

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel. 

 FIRST SUNDAY OF LENT — Tone 5. Sunday of Orthodoxy. Martyr Eudoxia of Heliopolis (ca. 160-170). Ven. Martyrii (Martyrius) of Zelenétsk (Pskov—1603). Martyrs Nestor and Tribimius (3rd c.). Martyr Antonina of Nicæa in Bithynia (3rd-4th c.). Martyrs Marcellus and Anthony. Virgin Domnina of Syria (ca. 450-460). Ven. Agapius of Vatopedi (Mt. Athos).

Hebrews 11:24-26, 32-12:2 (Epistle)

By faith Moses, when he became of age, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God than to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin, esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt; for he looked to the reward. And what more shall I say? For the time would fail me to tell of Gideon and Barak and Samson and Jephthah, also of David and Samuel and the prophets: who through faith subdued kingdoms, worked righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, became valiant in battle, turned to flight the armies of the aliens. Women received their dead raised to life again. Others were tortured, not accepting deliverance, that they might obtain a better resurrection. Still others had trial of mockings and scourgings, yes, and of chains and imprisonment. They were stoned, they were sawn in two, were tempted, were slain with the sword. They wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins, being destitute, afflicted, tormented – of whom the world was not worthy. They wandered in deserts and mountains, in dens and caves of the earth. And all these, having obtained a good testimony through faith, did not receive the promise, God having provided something better for us, that they should not be made perfect apart from us. Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

John 1:43-51 (Gospel)

The following day Jesus wanted to go to Galilee, and He found Philip and said to him, “Follow Me.” Now Philip was from Bethsaida, the city of Andrew and Peter. Philip found Nathanael and said to him, “We have found Him of whom Moses in the law, and also the prophets, wrote – Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.” And Nathanael said to him, “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” Philip said to him, “Come and see.” Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward Him, and said of him, “Behold, an Israelite indeed, in whom is no deceit!” Nathanael said to Him, “How do You know me?” Jesus answered and said to him, “Before Philip called you, when you were under the fig tree, I saw you.” Nathanael answered and said to Him, “Rabbi, You are the Son of God! You are the King of Israel!” Jesus answered and said to him, “Because I said to you, ‘I saw you under the fig tree,’ do you believe? You will see greater things than these.” And He said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, hereafter you shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of Man.”

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS: Michael Gresh, Karen Raydo, Vernon and Mary Baldwin, Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Timothy Alberti, Maggie Clayton, Margaret Ristvey, Tanya Ferra, Christina Harmon, Fr. Michael Senyo, Thomas and Eliza Kirzmanich, George and Leona Vulkmer,… Inquirers and Catechumens Jeremiah Stump, Bill and Shonlee Shontz, and family…. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Yurasko, Claudia Sukel, Paul Krause,…those traveling….... military servers…Greg Hargett….our seminarian….Tristan Gall and his fiancée Mary…Our newly Illumined… Jessica (Anna), Olivia (Helen), Nikolas, and Natalia Our Newly Wed…James and Natalia (Tuktik) Gall.

Announcements:

  •       Today- Procession of Icons at the end of Divine Liturgy
  •       Parish Choir practice Saturday, Mar.7th - following vespers.
  •        SEE THE UPDATED Lenten Schedule below- there are a lot of changes
  •       The Sunday School has Orthodox pendants available to raise funds for camp (see table at entrance of hall).
  •       Missions Team 2015 fundraiser will be held on May 22nd 2015.
  •       Pysanky Egg Making begins Today after Coffee Hour
  •       No Parish Council Meeting this month (Next mtg. Apr. 22nd)
  •       Youth and Family Bowling Rescheduled for Sunday April 28th

UPDATED  

SAINTS PETER AND PAUL ORTHODOX CHURCH

 LENTEN SCHEDULE FOR 2015

                                

Week 1                                    ORTHODOXY SUNDAY  

Sun. Mar. 1st                 Mission Vespers- Holy Cross ChurchMt. Lebanon, PA    4:00pm

Wed. Mar. 4th    Presanctified Liturgy (Discussion of The Art of Prayer)          6:00pm

Fri. Mar. 6th   Presanctified Liturgy /Bring a Lenten dish to pass with Family Games 6:00pm  

 

 

Week 2                               ST. GREGORY PALAMAS

Sun. Mar.8th                    Mission Vespers-                                            TBA

Sat. Mar. 14th          Memorial Saturday Liturgy                               8:00am

                  LENTEN RETREAT – (Adult Sunday School)

Morning Prayers, Opening Lenten Reflection and Meditation 10:00am

Lunch- Parish hall - women prepare - men clean up               12:00noon

Film- The War Within, Discussion and a time of Stillness         1p-3:30pm

     Confession/ Great Vespers                                                      4:00 pm                        

 

 Week 3                               THE VENERABLE HOLY CROSS

Sun. Mar. 15th     Mission Vespers- St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral  (Allison Park) -4:00pm

Wed. Mar. 18th    Presanctified Liturgy (Discussion of the Holy Psalter )     6:00pm

Fri. Mar. 20th               Akathist to the Lord                               10:00am

Sat. Mar. 21st     Sunday School Youth Retreat 1:00pm w/Great Vespers 6pm

                                  (Fr. Will hear confessions)

 

Week 4                             ST. JOHN OF THE LADDER       

Sun. Mar. 22nd    Mission Vespers- St. John the Baptist Church  (NewKe)             4:00pm                                                            

Tues. Mar. 24th Vesperal Liturgy - Annunciation of the Mother of God    6:00pm

Fri. Mar. 27th  PreSanctified Liturgy /Bring a dish to pass (Church History class)    6:00pm

Sat. Mar. 28th    Great Vespers                                                                                 6:00pm

 

Week 5                           ST. MARY OF EGYPT

Sun. Mar. 29th  Divine Liturgy with His Eminence Melchesidek              9:00am

                       *We will have a pot luck dinner in his honor with the Sunday School                  

                            Children greeting him in the hall. Fr. Daniel will be presenting him

                              with a special gift at the end of the Divine Liturgy.

                                 Holy Unction- St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral        4:00pm

Wed. Apr. 1st     Presanctified Liturgy (Discussion on Hagiography)          6:00pm

                                                    HOLY WEEK 2015

Sat. Apr.4th LAZARUS SATURDAY LITURGY (with Baptisms and Chrismations)  9:30am

                    Great Vespers - w/ Blessing of palms and willows                          6:00pm

 Sunday April 5th

The Lord’s Entrance into Jerusalem (Sunday of the Palms)

Hours 9:15 - Liturgy 9:30am

 

Holy Monday April 6th

PreSanctified Liturgy (Discussion on the Bodiless Powers of Heaven)     9:30am

Bridegroom Matins                                                                                       6:00pm

 

Holy Tuesday April 7th

PreSanctified Liturgy     (Discussion on St John the forerunner)                9:30am

Bridegroom Matins                                                                                     6:00pm

 

Holy Wednesday April 8th

PreSanctified Liturgy (Discussion on the Betrayal of the Lord)               9:30am

 

Holy Thursday April 9th

Vesperal Liturgy of St. Basil the Great                                                      9:30am

The Holy Passion of the Lord      (With reading of the 12 Gospels)           6:00pm

                                                    

 Holy Friday April 10th Strict Fast Day

Royal Hours                                                                                                                    9:00am

Vespers and the procession of the Burial Cloth of the Lord            4:00pm

Matins of Holy Saturday (Lamentations)                                             6:00pm

 

Holy Saturday April 11th

Vesperal Liturgy of St. Basil the Great                                                           9:30am

Midnight Office                                                                                              11:30pm

 GREAT AND HOLY PASHCA

 Matins                                                                                                          12:00mid

Pashcal Divine Liturgy, Blessing of Baskets, Agape Feast                                                                                                   

Pashcal Vespers                                                                                            4:00pm

Bright MONDAY

Divine Liturgy                                                                                                  9:30am

 

SAINTS PETER AND PAUL ORTHODOX CHURCH

                   LENTEN SCHEDULE FOR 2015

                                

Feb. 23rd- 26th           The Great Canon of St. Andrew                                               6:00pm

Fri. Feb. 27th     Presanctified Liturgy /Bring a Lenten dish to pass                     6:00pm

 

Week 1                                    ORTHODOXY SUNDAY  

Sun. Mar. 1st                      Mission Vespers-                                               TBA(Generally 4pm)

Wed. Mar. 4th            Presanctified Liturgy                                                                6:00pm

Fri. Mar. 6th         Presanctified Liturgy /Bring a Lenten dish to pass                 6:00pm                  

Week 2                              ST. GREGORY PALAMAS

Sun. Mar.8th               Mission Vespers-                                        TBA

Wed. Mar. 11th         Presanctified Litury                                   6:00pm                              

Fri. Mar. 13th             Presanctified Liturgy /Bring a

                                             Lenten dish to pass                            6:00pm

Sat. Mar. 14th     LENTEN RETREAT – (Adult Sunday School)

                                Morning Prayers, Opening Lenten Reflection                       10:00am

                              Lunch- Parish hall - women prepare - men clean up..            12:00n

                             Women -  Parish House for discussion and fellowship         1:00pm                                                       

                              Men  - Parish Hall for discussion and fellowship

                             Confession/ Great Vespers                                                            4:00 pm                        

 

Week 3                               THE VENERABLE HOLY CROSS

Sun. Mar. 15th            Mission Vespers-                  TBA

Wed. Mar. 18th         Presanctified Liturgy                              6:00pm

Fri. Mar. 20th               Akathist to the Lord                               6:00pm

Sat. Mar. 21st              Memorial Saturday Liturgy                9:30am

       Youth Retreat 2:00pm w/Great Vespers (Note Time Change) 5:00pm

Week 4                              ST. JOHN OF THE LADDER      

Sun. Mar. 21st  Mission Vespers-                                                               TBA

Wed. Mar. 24th Vesperal Liturgy - Annunciation of the Mother of God    6:00pm Thu. Mar. 25th The Canon of St. Andrew- w/Life of St. Mary of Egypt   6:00pm

Sat. Mar. 26th    Akathist to the Mother of God                                             10:00am

                          Great Vespers                                        6:00pm

 

Week 5                           ST. MARY OF EGYPT

Sun. Mar. 29th Divine Liturgy with His Eminence Melchesidek   9:00am

                                    Mission Vespers-                                                        TBA

Wed. Apr. 1st     Presanctified Liturgy                                                                     6:00pm

Fri. Apr. Presanctified Liturgy (Last Day of Great Lent)                 6:00pm

                                                    

 

HOLY WEEK 2015

 

Sat. Apr.4th          LAZARUS SATURDAY LITURGY    (with Baptisms…)         9:30am

            Great Vespers - w/ Blessing of palms and willows                                 6:00pm

 

Sunday April 5th

The Lord’s Entrance into Jerusalem (Sunday of the Palms)

Hours 9:15 - Liturgy 9:30am

Bridegroom Matins                                                                                                6:00pm

 

Holy Monday April 6th

(Monday evening) Bridegroom Matins                                                     6:00pm

 

 

Holy Tuesday April 7th

Presanctified Liturgy                                                                                  9:30am

 

 

Holy Wednesday April 8th

Holy Unction Service                                                                                                          TBA

 

 

Holy Thursday April 9th

Vesperal Liturgy of St. Basil the Great                                                       9:30am

The Holy Passion of the Lord     (With reading of the 12 Gospels)    6:00pm

                                                    

 

Holy Friday April 10th Strict Fast Day

Royal Hours                                                                                                            9:00am

Vespers and the procession of the Burial Cloth of the Lord    4:00pm

Matins of Holy Saturday (Lamentations)                                       6:00pm

 

 

Holy Saturday April 11th

Vesperal Liturgy of St. Basil the Great                                                 9:30am

Midnight Office                                                                                                   11:30pm

 

GREAT AND HOLY PASHCA

 

Matins                                                                                                                 12:00mid

Pashcal Divine Liturgy, Blessing of Baskets, Agape Feast                                                                                                   

Pashcal Vespers                                                                                            4:00pm

 

 

Bright MONDAY

Divine Liturgy                                                                       9:30 am

 

 

 

LENTEN THOUGHTS FOR CONTEMPLATION…

 

"My poor soul! Sigh, pray and strive to take upon you the blessed yoke of Christ, and you will live on earth in a heavenly manner. Lord, grant that I may carry the light and goodly yoke, and I shall be always at rest, peaceful, glad and joyous; and I shall taste on earth of crumbs which fall from the celestial feast, like a dog that feeds upon the crumbs which fall from the master's table." —St. Tikhon of Voronezh

"I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser. Every branch of mine that bears no fruit, he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit. You are already made clean by the word which I have spoken to you. Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in me, and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing. If a man does not abide in me, he is cast forth as a branch and withers; and the branches are gathered, thrown into the fire and burned. If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you will, and it shall be done for you. By this my Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit, and so prove to be my disciples. As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you; abide in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father's commandments and abide in his love.  These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full. "This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.      —The Gospel of St. John the Theologian 15:1-12ff.

Having God, fear nothing, but cast all of your care upon Him, and He will take care of you. Believe undoubtingly, and God will help you according to His mercy. 
-St. Barsanuphius the Great, Instructions, 166

If a man has no worries about himself at all for the sake of love toward God and the working of good deeds, knowing that God is taking care of him, this is a true and wise hope. But if a man takes care of his own business and turns to God in prayer only when misfortunes come upon him which are beyond his power, and then he begins to hope in God, such a hope is vain and false. A true hope seeks only the Kingdom of God... the heart can have no peace until it obtains such a hope. This hope pacifies the heart and produces joy within it. 
-St. Seraphim of Sarov, Works, 4

A man becomes spiritual insofar as he lives a spiritual life. He begins to see God in all things, to see His power and might in every manifestation. Always and everywhere he sees himself abiding in God and dependent on God for all things. But insofar as a man lives a bodily life, so much he does he do bodily things; He doesn't see God in anything, even in the most wondrous manifestations of His Divine power. In all things he sees body, material, everywhere and always - "God is not before his eyes." (Ps. 35:2) -St. John of Kronstadt, My Life in Christ, I.5

If you want to attain salvation, learn and keep in your heart all that the holy Church teaches and, receiving heavenly power from the mysteries of the Church, walk the path of Christ's commandments, under the direction of lawful pastors, and you will undoubtedly attain the Heavenly Kingdom and be saved. All of this is naturally necessary in the matter of salvation, necessary in it entirety and for all. Whoever rejects or neglects any part of it has no salvation. 
(St. Theophan the Recluse, Five Teachings on the Path to Salvation, 3)

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Rev. Daniel Mathewson –Rector

February 15th, 2015        

 

Parish phone: 814-734-3801

25636 Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

 

Christ is in our midst!...

He is and always shall be!

Sunday of the Last Judgment

A Blessed welcome to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach the priest Fr. Daniel. 

Services this week and Next: Sat. Feb. 21st Panahida will be served for the Reposed 10am Great Vespers 6PM. Sunday Feb. 22nd Divine Liturgy 9:30am (Hours 9:15)

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS: Michael Gresh, Karen Raydo, Vernon and Mary Baldwin, Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Timothy Alberti, Maggie Clayton, Margaret Ristvey, Tanya Ferra, Christina Harmon, Fr. Michael Senyo, Elizabeth Skindell, Thomas and Eliza Kirzmanich, George Vulkmer, Regis Schneider, Raymond… Inquirers and Catechumens Jeremiah Stump, Bill and Shonlee Shontz, and family, Scott and Sharon Beery and family…. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Yurasko, Claudia Sukel, Paul Krause,…those traveling….... military servers…Greg Hargett….our seminarian….Tristan Gall and his fiancée Mary…Our newly Illumined… Jessica (Anna), Oilivia (Helen), Nikolas, and Natalia Our Newly Wed…James and Natalia (Tuktik) Gall.

“Grant Rest and Eternal Memory” to John Wasko who passed away in the Lord on Sunday Feb. 8th. John was 94 years old and one of the founding members of the parish. Remember John in your prayers this week.

  • Parish Council Meeting this week Tuesday, Feb. 17th (vespers 5:30pm) 6pm
  • Parish Choir practice Saturday, Feb. 21st following vespers.
  • The Bowling outing to Pittsburgh is cancelled for today.
  • The Sunday School has orthodox pendants available to raise funds for camp.
  • Missions Team 2015 fundraiser will be held on May 22nd 2015.

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 

Rev. Daniel Mathewson – Rector 

February 1st,  2015

Parish phone: 814-734-3801

 

25636 N. Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412        

 

www.orthodxcrossingville.org

 

SUNDAY OF THE PUBLICAN AND THE PHARISEE Tone1  Forefeast of the Meeting. Beginning of the Lenten Triodion. Martyr Tryphon of Campsada near Apamea in Syria (250). Martyrs Perpetua, a woman of Carthage, and the Catechumens: Saturus, Revocatus, Saturninus, Secundulus and Felicitas (202-203). Ven. Peter Galata, Hermit, near Antioch in Syria (429). Ven. Vendemianus (Bendemianus), Hermit, of Bithynia (ca. 512). Ven. Bridget (Brigid) of Ireland (523).

 

A BLESSED WELCOME to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach our priest Fr. Daniel after the service or at coffee hour in the parish hall.

   * Please follow along in the Divine Liturgy Book in the Pew beginning on page 29. We are glad you are here, we do not practice “open” communion, which means you must be a baptized Orthodox Christian who is under a spiritual father confessor, making confession regularly in order to partake of the Holy Mysteries of Christ.

 

 

 

SERVICES THIS WEEK:

TODAY- - Festal Great Vespers - 4pm

Monday, Feb. 2nd – Meeting of the Lord in the Temple – Divine Liturgy

                                       9:30am (Hours 9:15)

Sunday, Feb. 8th - Divine Liturgy -9:30am (Hours 9:15am)

 

2 Timothy 3:10-15 (Epistle)

But you have carefully followed my doctrine, manner of life, purpose, faith, longsuffering, love, perseverance,persecutions, afflictions, which happened to me at Antioch, at Iconium, at Lystra – what persecutions I endured. And out of them all the Lord delivered me. Yes, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution. But evil men and impostors will grow worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived. But you must continue in the things which you have learned and been assured of, knowing from whom you have learned them, and that from childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.

Luke 18:10-14 (Gospel)

Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, ‘God, I thank You that I am not like other men – extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this tax collector.’I fast twice a week; I give tithes of all that I possess.’ And the tax collector, standing afar off, would not so much as raise his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me a sinner!’ I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.

 

PLEASE INCLUDE THESE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN YOUR DAILY PRAYERS: Michael Gresh, Vernon and Mary Baldwin, Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Timothy Alberti, Maggie Clayton, Margaret Ristvey, Tanya Ferra, Christina Harmon, Fr. Michael Senyo, Elizabeth Skindell, Thomas and Eliza Kirzmanich, George Vulkmer, Regis Schneider, Raymond…  Inquirers and Catechumens Jeremiah Stump, Bill and Shonlee Shontz, and family, Scott and Sharon Beery and family…. the homebound… Helen Miller, Richard and Maryann Onest, John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Ruth and Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy Yurasko, John Wasko, Claudia Sukel, Paul Krause,…those traveling…Steve and Lisa Danko, and others.... military servers…Greg Hargett….our seminarian….Tristan Gall and his fiancée Mary…Our newly Illumined… Jessica (Anna), Oilivia (Helen), Nikolas, and Natalia Our Newly Wed…James and Natalia (Tuktik) Gall.

 

"I would like an abundance of peace. I would like full vessels of charity. I would like rich treasures of mercy. I would like cheerfulness to preside over all."

- St. Brigid of Kildare (451 - 523)

 

Great Lent begins on February 23rd

Announcements

  • Today Sunday School…
  • We will continue to collect food for the Edinboro Food Pantry- see bin in the hall
  • Mom’s Group – This Friday, Feb. 6th 9:30am-11:30 am in the Hall- (Child care provided)
  • Ladies Altar Society Meeting – Meeting Next Sunday Feb. 8th during coffee hour.
  • Choir Practice (Following Vespers)– Feb. 14th
  • Please pick up your Envelopes if you have not already, also if you have not filled out a purple pledge form please do so- they are available in the vestibule.
  • House Blessings will continue this week. Fr. Daniel will be contacting you to set up a visit.
  • Next Parish Council Meeting will be held Tuesday, Feb.17th  following daily vespers at 5:30pm.

 

UPCOMING YOUTH AND FAMILY EVENTS IN THE ARCHDIOCESE:

 

Saturday Feb. 7th, 2015 --Great Vespers 6pm

(For anyone interested: St Tikhon’s Seminary Choir- Holy Ghost OCA – Ambridge 4:30pm dinner to follow. )

Sunday, Feb. 15, 2015 – Archdiocesan Youth/Family Bowling Party, Mt. Lebanon Lanes, 3-5PM.

 

Pysanky Egg Making – March 8th, 15th, 22nd and 29th following Sunday School -All are welcome to participate.

 

FOCA National Basketball Tournament May 15-17, 2015

Hosted by Cap City O Club  - Held at Independence OH
Hotel: Embassy Suites Cleveland-Independence at Rockside
3 age categories. If we have enough interested we can form our own team, or join on other teams established. Please sign up in the Hall.

 

 

St. John of the Ladder – On the Definitions of HOLY HUMILITY

 

1. HUMILITY IS THE CONSTANT FORGETFULNESS OF ONE’S OWN ACHEIVEMENTS.

  

                  “a God-given protection against seeing our own achievements. It is an abyss of self-abasement to which no thief (the demons) can gain entry.”

 

                  “ Should thoughts of self praise, of self-satisfaction, occur to you, remind yourself  that your are nothing , and that all that is good in you is accomplished by the grace of God.” – St John of Kronstadt

 

2. HUMILITY IS THE ADMISSIONTHAT IN ALL THE WORLD ONE IS THE LEAST IMPORTANT PERSON AND IS ALSO THE GREATEST SINNER.

  

                 “Pride shows itself particularly in the fact that  the man who is infected with it makes himself equal to all, or at any rate to many, who surpass him in age, strength, and ability, and cannot bear to be considered beneath them. If a proud man is a subordinate, he does not respect his superior as he ought, does not like to greet him properly, and does not respect his orders, but fulfills them unwillingly, and only out of fear. He makes himself equal to better educated people, and does not acknowledge anyone to be superior to himself, or else acknowledges the superiority of only very few indeed. If he is a learned—or even an unlearned—son, he does not pay due respect to his parents and benefactors, particularly those who are simple and rough folk, considering himself equal to or even above them.” -St John of Kronstadt

 

3. HUMILITY IS THE MINDS AWARENESS THAT ONE IS WEAK AND HELPLESS.

   “Without Me you can do nothing” –Jesus   St. John15:5

 

4. HUMILITY IS TO FORESTALL ONE’S NEIGHBOR AT A CONTENTIOUS MOMENT AND TO BE THE FIRST TO END A QUARREL.

        

                  “Blessed are the peacemakers, For they shall be called sons of God. –Jesus St. Matt. 5:9

 

                  “ The man who carries strife in his breast is rearing a poisonous snake in his bosom…It is as if a mountain weighs you down; you cannot breathe, lightly and freely, You feel like a captive and even worse than that… The spirit is bound with chains of satanic strife, and the body also feels weakened because of this…If strife is a work of the Devil , reconciliation is the work of God. Peace is one of the most precious of God’s gifts. With the arrival of reconciliation, darkness disappears for the souls of those who until then have been filled with spite; and the peace of God, the light of God, and the joy of God settle there. God’s grace descends on the reconciled, and they feel as if they were in Paradise” – Archimandrite Seraphim

 

5. HUMILITY IS THE ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF DIVINE GRACE AND DIVINE MERCY.

 

                  First Corinthians 10:13 reads, “God is faithful and will give us an escape so that we may endure.” Matthew the Poor tells us that, “the way of escape is through the speedy, sure and faithful intervention of the Holy Spirit to lift man above his own level and minister to those who are tempted. If only we had complete confidence that just as the devil ONLY makes war on the believers who are filled with the Holy Spirit, so also the Holy Spirit could not possibly abandon believers who have each been led to the Holy Spirit and loved Him, clinging to Him and acquiring Him as truth and life.”  However the Holy Spirit will not intervene without our invitation. St. James teaches us, “You do not have because you do not ask” (St James 4:2) James assurs us, “God resists the proud but gives grace to the humble. Therefore submit to God. Resist the Devil and he will flee from you” (4:7). One who is humble will acknowledge God’s grace at work and will submit to God’s will.

 

6. HUMILITY IS THE DISPOSITION OF A CONTRITE SOUL AND THE ABDICATION OF ONE’S OWN WILL.

            “O My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from Me…nevertheless, not as I will, but as You will” –Jesus (St. Matthew 26:39).

 

                  Behold the maidservant of the Lord! Let it be to me according to your word” --The Theotokos (St Luke 1:2638)

 

 

 

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 

Rev. Daniel Mathewson – Rector 

January 25th  2015

Parish phone: 814-734-3801

 

25636 N. Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412        

 

www.orthodxcrossingville.org

 

33rd SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 8. St. Gregory the Theologian, Archbishop of Constantinople (389). Sunday of Zacchaeus. St. Moses, Archbishop of Novgorod (1362). Martyrs Felicitas of Rome, and seven sons: Januarius, Felix, Philip, Silvanus, Alexander, Vitalis and Martial (ca. 164). Ven. Publius, Ascetic, of Syria (ca. 380). St. Mares the Singer, of Syria (ca. 430). Icons of the Most-holy Theotokos, “ASSUAGE MY SORROW” (translation to Moscow in 1640), and “THE UNEXPECTED JOY.”.

 

A BLESSED WELCOME to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection. This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach our priest Fr. Daniel after the service or at coffee hour in the parish hall.

   * Please follow along in the Divine Liturgy Book in the Pew beginning on page 29. We are glad you are here, we do not practice “open” communion, which means you must be a baptized Orthodox Christian who is under a spiritual father confessor, making confession regularly in order to partake of the Holy Mysteries of Christ.

SERVICES THIS WEEK:

House Blessings…

Saturday, Jan. 31st – Great Vespers 6:00pm

Sunday, Feb. 1st - Divine Liturgy  (With His Eminence Melchesidek)   9:30am (Hours 9:15am)  - Festal Great Vespers – 7pm

Monday, Feb. 2nd – Meeting of the Lord in the Temple – Divine Liturgy

                                       9:30am (Hours 9:15)

1 Timothy 4:9-15 (Epistle)

This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptance. For to this end we both labor and suffer reproach, because we trust in the living God, who is the Savior of all men, especially of those who believe. These things command and teach. Let no one despise your youth, but be an example to the believers in word, in conduct, in love, in spirit, in faith, in purity. Till I come, give attention to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine. Do not neglect the gift that is in you, which was given to you by prophecy with the laying on of the hands of the eldership. Meditate on these things; give yourself entirely to them, that your progress may be evident to all.

1 Corinthians 12:7-11 (Epistle, Saint)

But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all:for to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, to another the word of knowledge through the same Spirit,to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healings by the same Spirit,

to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another discerning of spirits, to another different kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues.But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually as He wills.

Luke 19:1-10 (Gospel)

Then Jesus entered and passed through Jericho. Now behold, there was a man named Zacchaeus who was a chief tax collector, and he was rich. And he sought to see who Jesus was, but could not because of the crowd, for he was of short stature. So he ran ahead and climbed up into a sycamore tree to see Him, for He was going to pass that way. And when Jesus came to the place, He looked up and saw him, and said to him, “Zacchaeus, make haste and come down, for today I must stay at your house.” So he made haste and came down, and received Him joyfully. But when they saw it, they all complained, saying, “He has gone to be a guest with a man who is a sinner.” Then Zacchaeus stood and said to the Lord, “Look, Lord, I give half of my goods to the

 

 

poor; and if I have taken anything from anyone by false accusation, I restore fourfold.” And Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, because he also is a son of Abraham; for the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.

John 10:9-16 (Gospel, Saint)

I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly. I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep. But a hireling, he who is not the shepherd, one who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees; and the wolf catches the sheep and scatters them. The hireling flees because he is a hireling and does not care about the sheep. I am the good shepherd; and I know My sheep, and am known by My own. As the Father knows Me, even so I know the Father; and I lay down My life for the sheep. And other sheep I have which are not of this fold; them also I must bring, and they will hear My voice; and there will be one flock and one shepherd.


Announcements

  • Today Sunday School RESUMES…
  • We will continue to collect food for the Edinboro Food Pantry- see bin in the hall
  • Mom’s Group – Friday, Feb. 6th 9:30am-11:30 am in the Hall- (Child care provided)
  • Ladies Altar Society Meeting – Today, Jan. 25th during coffee hour
  • Choir Practice (Following Vespers)– Feb. 14th
  • Please pick up your Envelopes if you have not already, also if you have not filled out a purple pledge form please do so- they are available in the vestibule.
  • House Blessings will continue this week. Fr. Daniel will be contacting you to set up a visit.
  • Next Parish Council Meeting will be held Tuesday Feb.17th following daily vespers at 5:30pm.

 

UPCOMING YOUTH AND FAMILY EVENTS IN THE ARCHDIOCESE:

 

Saturday Feb. 7th, 2015 St Tikhon’s Seminary Choir- Holy Ghost OCA – Ambridge 4:30pm dinner to follow. We will not have vespers here.

Sunday, Feb. 15, 2015 - Youth/Family Bowling Party, Mt. Lebanon Lanes, 3-5PM.

 

Pysanky Egg Making – March 8th, 15th, 22nd and 29th following Sunday School  -All are welcome to participate.

 

FOCA National Basketball Tournament May 15-17, 2015

Hosted by Cap City O Club  - Held at Independence OH
Hotel: Embassy Suites Cleveland-Independence at Rockside
3 age categories. If we have enough interested we can form our own team, or join on other teams established. Please sign up in the Hall.

Abraham at the End of the World

Fr. Stephen Freeman 

This is an exercise in the Orthodox reading of the Scriptures. My thoughts frequently return to this story and this line of thought. This article is greatly expanded from an earlier version.

 

The habits of modern Christians run towards history: it is a lens through which we see the world. We see a world of cause and effect, and, because the past is older than the present, we look to the past to find the source of our present. Some cultures have longer memories than others (America’s memory usually extends only to the beginning of the present news cycle). This same habit of mind governs the reading of Scripture. For many, the Scriptures are a divinely inspired account of the history of God’s people. That history is read as history, believed as history, and applied to the present by drawing out the lessons of history. Any challenge to the historical character of an account is seen, therefore, as an assault on the authority and integrity of the Scriptures themselves. But this radical historicalization of the Scriptures is relatively new: there are other ways of

reading that often reveal far more content of the mystery of God. There is an excellent example in St. Paul’s letter to the Galatians. He establishes a point of doctrine through an allegorical or typological reading of the story of Sarah and Hagar. We might ask, “How can you say that Hagar is Mount Sinai in Arabia? Where did you get all this?”

                  His points are clearly not found within the historical account. Their meaning lies in theshape of the story itself, Christ’s Pascha being the primary interpretative element. Christ is the Child of Promise, the first-born son who is offered, and the ram who replaced him. Abraham’s efforts to create his own version of a fulfilled covenant (having a child by Hagar), is thus seen as unfaithfulness, the rejection of Christ (Gal. 4:21-31).

                  I am here offering a similar meditation on the story of the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah – a non-historical reading that offers insight into the mystery of Christ and the way of salvation.

Remove Sodom and Gomorrah from the realm of historical speculation. Instead see with me, Genesis 18 as a parable of the end of the age (which includes our time as well). For, as Christ Himself notes, the end of the age will be “like the days of Sodom and Gomorrah.”  God appears to Abraham as three angels (the account moves strangely between singular and plural references – the Fathers saw this as a foreshadowing of the Trinity). In the course of His visit God speaks:

“Shall I hide from Abraham what I am doing, since Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him? For I have known him, in order that he may command his children and his household after him, that they keep the way of the LORD, to do righteousness and justice, that the LORD may bring to Abraham what He has spoken to him.” And the LORD said, “Because the outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah is great, and because their sin is very grave, I will go down now and see whether they have done altogether according to the outcry against it that has come to Me; and if not, I will know.” Then the men turned away from there and went toward Sodom, but Abraham still stood before the LORD.

Abraham’s intercession for Sodom and Gomorrah begins:

And Abraham came near and said, “Would You also destroy the righteous with the wicked? Suppose there were fifty righteous within the city; would You also destroy the place and not spare it for the fifty righteous that were in it? Far be it from You to do such a thing as this, to slay the righteous with the wicked, so that the righteous should be as the wicked; far be it from You! Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right? So the LORD said, “If I find in Sodom fifty righteous within the city, then I will spare all the place for their sakes.” Then Abraham answered and said, “Indeed now, I who am but dust and ashes have taken it upon myself to speak to the Lord: Suppose there were five less than the fifty righteous; would You destroy all of the city for lack of five?” So He said, “If I find there forty-five, I will not destroy it.” (Gen 18:17-28)

The conversation continues until the Lord promises to spare the cities even if only ten righteous are found.

The cities of Sodom and Gomorrah are the world in which we live. They are very similar to the description of the world in the Genesis account of Noah:

Then the LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And the LORD was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart. So the LORD said, “I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth, both man and beast, creeping thing and birds of the air, for I am sorry that I have made them.” (Gen 6:5-7)

Just as Christ compares the world of Noah to the world at the end of the age (Luke 17), so he also compares the end of the age to the days of Sodom and Gomorrah. But in the story of this Divine visitation we not only see the Trinity pre-figured, but the Church as well. There are the Oaks at Mamre, always understood as a type of the Cross. There is a Eucharistic meal, in which three loaves of bread and a calf (cf. the “fatted calf”) are prepared and set before these Divine visitors. There is also the Mother of God, prefigured in Sarah, who will bear a child even though she is beyond the years for such a thing. So, gathered there beneath the Tree, God sits down with man and sups with him (Rev. 3:20).

As the mystery continues to unfold, two of the three strangers go on towards Sodom (which represents the world in its fallen state). Historical interpreters laugh at the “primitive” character of the story when they hear God saying that He is going to Sodom to see for Himself whether what He has heard is true. But we see a deeper mystery. The Father sends the Son and the Spirit into the world for judgment:

And when He has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: (John 16:8)

Modern critics see this visit as primitive. It is more accurately seen as an expression of the inherently personal work of God. He does not see and judge us from afar, but comes among us as His own.

And we see the nature of the Church in its relationship with God. For the Lord says to Himself:

Shall I hide from Abraham what I am doing, since Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation…

The Church is not ignorant of God’s work in the world and His hidden purposes. Rather, He leads us into all truth (John 16:13).

                  But the greatest mystery in this story unfolds as Abraham takes up the priestly ministry of the Church and intercedes before God. This is by far the most astounding manifestation of the righteousness of the great Patriarch.

Though two of the angels have turned away, Abraham “stands before the Lord” (the essential work of the priesthood). And there he begins his prayers. While he prays, the judgment of Sodom and Gomorrah waits – it hangs in a balance. Will the Lord spare the cities for the sake of 50 righteous? 45? 40? 30? 20? 10? It is with fear and trembling that Abraham is bold to bargain with God. It is with fear and trembling that he asks, “Will the Lord destroy the righteous with the wicked?” In this intercession, Abraham takes up the role of mediator, something that Job longed to see as recorded in the Greek translation of the Old Testament (LXX):

Would that our mediator were present, and a reprover, and one who should hear the cause between both.’ (Job 9:33)

                  The Elder Sophrony saw in this verse the description of the essential work of the priestly Christ, the very work that is given to us in our priesthood.

Abraham’s intercession reveals the very heart of the Church’s prayer. The righteous man lives side-by-side with the wicked, but he doesn’t despise them or pray for their destruction. Instead, he recognizes the coinherence and communion of all humanity – “Will the Lord destroy the righteous with the wicked?” We are with the wicked. We do not have a life apart from them, for we are with them. And this presence becomes the fulcrum for the salvation of the world. “I will be with you,” Christ promises (Matt. 28:20). Or as we remember in the services of the Church:

God is with us! Understand you nations and submit yourselves for God is with us!

It is interesting in our day and time that many Christians number themselves among those who call for the destruction of the wicked. Surrounded by evil, our fears lash out with violent thoughts. We refuse to be with the wicked. And though Abraham and Lot had gone their separate ways, Abraham didn’t set himself as being above him – nor even above the wicked who dwelt in the cities. For though his prayer is for the righteous – he pleads through them for the wicked.

                  This is not only the prayer of the Church, it is the ministry of the Church as well. We are called to be the righteous-with-the-wicked. Our lives in their midst are for their salvation. This principle can be extended. For the wicked is something of a relative category. Even within the Church, some of us must always admit that our lives are more like those of the wicked than the righteous. But the principle is that the wicked are always being saved by the righteous. This “pyramid of salvation” extends throughout the world up to the supreme and primary example in which Christ, the only righteous One, saves the wicked, which is us all. We are taught to pray for our enemies not as a moral requirement, but so that we might be like our heavenly Father, or in this case, like our father Abraham, who was like our heavenly Father

But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: (Luke 6:35)

This patterned principle is essential to a right understanding of the faith and our life in the world. Like the account of Abraham and God in Genesis 18, the Church is a Eucharistic Community. Gathered under the healing shadow of the Cross, in union with the most Holy Mother of God, the Church shares in the banquet that is our very life. And there we learn God’s most intimate plans, and by union with His compassion, we learn to pray for the whole world and share in the mediating priesthood of Christ. This is what love looks like.

 

Many Orthodox services conclude with the petition: O Lord, through the prayers of our holy fathers, have mercy on us, and save us! May God number us among such holy fathers!

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 Rev. Daniel Mathewson –Rector January 18TH 2015

Parish phone: 814-734-3801

 25636 N. Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412        

 32nd SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 7. Ss. Athanasius the Great (373) and Cyril (444), Archbishops of Alexandria. Ven. Afanásii (Athanasius), Abbot of Syandémsk (Vologdá—16th c.). Righteous Afanásii of Novolótsk, Monk (16th-17th c.). Ven. Marcian of Cyrrhus in Syria (ca. 388).

 

A BLESSED WELCOME to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection.This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior. Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach our priest Fr. Daniel after the service or at coffee hour in the parish hall.

   * Please follow along in the Divine Liturgy Book in the Pew beginning on page 29. We are glad you are here, we do not practice “open” communion, which means you must be a baptized Orthodox Christian who is under a spiritual father confessor, making confession regularly in order to partake of the Holy Mysteries of Christ.

 

 

SERVICES THIS WEEK:

Wednesday, Jan.21st Daily vespers 5:30pm (PC Mtg. following)

Saturday, Jan. 24th – Great Vespers 6:00pm

Sunday, Jan. 25th - Divine Liturgy 9:30am (Hours 9:15am)

Sunday, Feb . 1st -  Archbishop Melchesidek  will make his annual visit to our parish .

 

1 Timothy 1:15-17 (Epistle)

This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am chief.

However, for this reason I obtained mercy, that in me first Jesus Christ might show all longsuffering, as a pattern to those who are going to believe on Him for everlasting life. Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, to God who alone is wise, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen.


Luke 18:18-27 (Gospel)

Now a certain ruler asked Him, saying, “Good Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” So Jesus said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. You know the commandments: ‘Do not commit adultery,’ ‘Do not murder,’ ‘Do not steal,’ ‘Do not bear false witness,’ ‘Honor your father and your mother.’ And he said, “All these things I have kept from my youth.” So when Jesus heard these things, He said to him, “You still lack one thing. Sell all that you have and distribute to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.” But when he heard this, he became very sorrowful, for he was very rich. And when Jesus saw that he became very sorrowful, He said, “How hard it is for those who have riches to enter the kingdom of God! For it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God. And those who heard it said, “Who then can be saved?” But He said, “The things which are impossible with men are possible with God.”

 

Announcements

 

  • Today Sunday School will be joint Children and Adults.
  • We will be continuing to collect food for the Edinboro Food Pantry- see bin in the hall
  • Mom’s Group – Friday, Feb. 6th 9:30am-11:30 am in the Hall- (Child care provided)
  • Mission Team Meeting – Today, Jan. 18th during coffee hour
  • Choir Practice (Following Vespers)– Jan. 24th, Feb. 14th
  • Please pick up your Envelopes if you have not already, also if you have not filled out a purple pledge form please do so- they are available in the vestibule.
  • House Blessings will continue this week. Fr. Daniel will be contacting you to set up a visit.
  • Parish Council Meeting will be held this Wednesday Jan. 21st following daily vespers at 5:30pm.

 

UPCOMING YOUTH AND FAMILY EVENTS IN THE ARCHDIOCESE:

 

Sunday, Jan. 25, 2015 - Winter Ice Skating Party, PPG Ice Rink, Downtown, Pittsburgh, 3-5PM
Saturday Feb. 7th, 2015 St Tikhon’s Seminary Choir- Holy Ghost OCA – Ambridge 4:30pm dinner to follow.
Sunday, Feb. 15, 2015 - Youth/Family Bowling Party, Mt. Lebanon Lanes, 3-5PM.

 

FOCA National Basketball Tournament May 15-17, 2015

Hosted by Cap City O Club  - Held at Independence OH
Hotel: Embassy Suites Cleveland-Independence at Rockside
$93.00 a night + tax Suites sleep 6 /Complimentary cooked to order breakfast. Sign up in hall if you are interested – --3 age categories. If we have enough interested we can form our own team, or join on other teams established.

 

THE PROBLEM OF GOODNESS

Fr. Stephen Freeman 

                  Though many struggle with the so-called “Problem of Evil,” the greater moral problem is that of goodness. How do we account for goodness in the world – particularly self-sacrificing heroic goodness?

                  It is not uncommon for a person in a dangerous situation to place their own life at risk in order to save the life of another. It is by no means universal (some act first to save themselves or are paralyzed by fear) but it is not at all uncommon. People also frequently act in a manner that ignores their own self-interest and values the well-being and interest of others. And these situations are often done in a manner that simply baffles all moral consideration.

                  Morality is the practice of following the rules. For Christians, those rules are the commandments of God. But even atheists will have some sense of what they consider to be right and wrong and will struggle to act accordingly. Families and cultures strive to inculcate morality in the young – helping them discern between right and wrong and helping them learn to choose the right. I have written (with some noted protests from others) that I think there is very little moral progress in human lives – that our internalized sense of right and wrong and our relationship with acting morally – is largely formed very early in life and undergoes very little change. A corollary of this assertion is that salvation (theosis), being united with God and conformed to the image of Christ, is not something that comes at the end of or as a result of moral progression.

                  I do not mean to imply that moral teaching is useless or even that it should be neglected. The formation of the young is a precious responsibility that should never be neglected. I do not think, however, that our moral suasion will be of much benefit to adults. I think they will be just about as good or bad as their character will allow and will likely feel guilt or shame as a result of moral failings, but character is by far the most reliable means of predicting and understanding behavior.

                  Character is something of a habit – or a set of habits. In the normal course of a human life it is shaped by many, many things both in the realm of nature and nurture. Many of the most important elements in a human life are set at a very early age. Character is also shaped by any number of unintended things – abuse, neglect, violence, shame, etc. Everyone you meet is broken in some manner and will likely discover patterns of brokenness that baffle their moral intentions. More moral instruction will not correct something whose deficiency was not caused by a lack of instruction.

                  Some of the best thought on the topic of character sets its formation within the realm ofpractices. Stanley Hauerwas has written that character is formed in much the same way a young apprentice learns to lay brick. We learn such skills by working with someone else who has those skills (a master brickmason). Probably the single greatest moral failing of the modern culture is the absence of apprenticeship. We foolishly take young people at the age of apprenticeship (today called “adolescence”) and place them in a social setting surrounded by others needing apprenticeship. Adolescents are not able to teach one another the skills that form and shape character. As a result, most adults are simply emotionally and morally immature, poorly shaped survivors of a broken culture that has forgotten how to make them into adults. Upon entering public school, children are launched into a “free-market” moral world in which character will be shaped by children. Why is “bullying” considered an epidemic today? Because our children are growing up on an island in the Lord of the Flies. Bullying is simply moderately successful behavior in the free market of adolescence. As a culture, we are insane.

                  All of that describes and even predicts our behavior to a great extent. We are about as good as our character will allow, only a little less so. So where does the character of goodness, of heroic goodness come from?

You can search in vain for the practices that produce heroic goodness. Despite the fantasy of Jedi Knights and the like, there are no schools for heroes. At best, we have video games by which we train the next generation of drone soldiers. But heroic goodness exists.

                  Earlier I mentioned the extreme cases that occur in the midst of physical danger. One stranger carries another down 12 flights of stairs during the collapse of the World Trade Center (there are many such cases). But there are also other far more mundane examples. A simple act of kindness, in the right circumstances, easily rises to the level of heroic goodness – particularly when it comes at personal cost. And these occur all the time. And those that I have in mind are not the product of virtue dictated by character. I have seen self-sacrificing goodness in the life of drug addicts, prostitutes and felons. Were such goodness able to be produced by any method known to man – then the book should be written and read by all.

Instead, we have serendipitous goodness – unlooked for, unpredictable, inexplicable.                I would even go so far as to suggest that such goodness alone accounts for the survival of our species. For were our moral character alone required to carry the burden of civilization, we would have perished long ago.

                  There is a word for such goodness – it is grace. The Orthodox speak of grace not as God’s favor, but as God’s own Life. It is His Divine Energies. And the goodness that I am describing has all of the hallmarks of such Divinity. It cannot be described as the product of human study or effort. It is something at which we can only marvel. It rightly moves us to tears and draws joy from the depths of our hearts. For it is the gratuitous gift of God erupting in our midst. And its presence in the world is a sign of the Kingdom.

                  Such goodness should give us pause to wonder. What role does it play in the life of salvation? If we are truly saved by grace, how are we to understand the role of such goodness in the moral struggle?

                  It is the position of this unaccountable goodness and its relationship to moral character that points to the “unmoral” nature of salvation that I have described in earlier articles. This goodness lies hidden, unknown, unpredictable, unable to be inculcated, taught or produced by human effort. It is not the product of a moral scheme nor even of character formation. Having said that, I do not think it is merely accidental nor without a cause. It is grace.

                  In the gospels we have recorded the account of the “good thief.” We can presume, based on the gospel itself, that he was a thief, legitimately tried, convicted and executed. He is not a keeper of the commandments. But in the moment of his extremity, he rises to defend an innocent man. At the same time, he acknowledges his own crime and accepts the justice of his own punishment. It is a clarifying moment, though in no way predictable. Turning to the man being crucified to his left, he says, “Remember me when you come into your kingdom,” and with that finds paradise. It is grace.

                  There is the story of another man convicted of a crime, treason in his case. On December 22, 1849, as part of a group of 20, he was led to a place of execution. Several were stripped and tied to poles where they faced a firing squad. At the last moment, word came from the Tsar that their sentences were to be changed. This man, Fyodor Dostoevsky, experienced a rebirth, though the commuted sentence included 8 years of prison and punishment.

Later that day he wrote his brother:  “I did not whimper, complain and lose courage. Life, life is everywhere, life is inside us… There will be people beside me, and to be a man among people is to remain a man forever… that is life, that is the task of life…” It was a moment of grace that created one of the most unique voices of the 19th century.

                  We are being saved by grace. The entrance of Christ into the world did not come in answer to a human project nor as a result of human struggle and effort. It was gratuitous. When it came it was not in any way according to expectation. The grace of God as incarnate flesh was simply not the long-expected Messiah. He was the Christ no one expected.

                  The grace of salvation is much the same – perhaps exactly the same. What it requires of us is thanksgiving. The eucharistic life that is given us in Christ is one of gratuitous grace and grateful response. For the Divine Life that is the end of salvation is not a crowning achievement of our disciplined efforts. It is the transformed heart of the grateful child. It is only such gratitude that forgives enemies (no moral calculus ever makes this possible). It is only such gratitude that sells everything and gives it to the poor (moral justice would reject it).

                  And while morality continues its mediocre course of success and failure – goodness, unbidden and unexpected, continues to manifest itself, teasing us towards the feast of thanksgiving at the Messiah’s last banquet. At that table there will be only grateful hearts at the gratuitous meal. The moral will have excused themselves in order to marry wives and buy cows.

 


To the Venerable Hierarchs, Reverend Clergy, Monastics, and Faithful of the Orthodox Church in America:

 

Dearly beloved,

                  Today has been designated by the Orthodox Church in America as “Sanctity of Life Sunday,” a day on which we re-affirm our faithfulness to the eternal value of human life and re-commit ourselves to the defense of the lives of the unborn, the infirm, the terminally ill and the condemned.

                  Our proclamation of life is offered in the context of a world in dismay at the terrorist attacks that recently shook Paris, the latest in a series of seemingly endless tragedies throughout the world that unnecessarily claim many innocent lives. Following this latest tragedy, Christians, Muslims, Jews and non-believers have engaged in discussion and debate about a range of issues, from human dignity to the responsibilities of political cartoonists, from freedom of expression to humanity’s capacity for tolerance. Unfortunately, much of this debate is framed in an atmosphere of ideological violence, whether this be a “war on infidels” or “war on terrorism.” In such divisive engagements, there are rarely any victors but only more victims.

                  As Orthodox Christians, who hold dear the revealed truth that the life of “all mankind” is sacred, we might reflect, along with St. Nikolai of Zhicha, on the paschal victory of Christ over death and corruption:

 

“Christ’s victory is the only victory in which all humanity can rejoice, from the first-created to the last. Every other victory on earth has divided, and still divides, men from one another. When an earthly king gains the victory over an another earthly king, one of them rejoices and the other laments. When a man is victorious over his neighbor, there is singing under one roof and weeping under the other. There is no joyful victory on earth that is not poisoned by malice: the ordinary, earthly victor rejoices both in his laughter and in the tears of his conquered enemy. He does not even notice how evil cuts through joy.”

                 

                  Our world is so full of these joyless and dark victories that we might despair of being able to put forward the hope and light of the Gospel message. We would do well to heed the words of St. Nikolai and keep our hearts and minds focused on our Lord, God and Savior Jesus Christ, in Whom alone can solace, hope and joy be found in any meaningful and lasting way.

                  Indeed, Christ did not say: “I offer one of many complimentary paths”; He said: I am the Way. Christ did no say: “I hold to the correct philosophical principles;” He said: I am the Truth. Christ did not say: “I subscribe to the only viable political agenda;” He said: I am the Life.

                  It is only possible to attain to this Way, this Truth and this Life through Christ and through the light that He bestows to those who strive to allow even a small beam of that light to enter their hearts and illumine their path. As St. Nikolai writes: “Christ’s victory alone is like a sun that sheds bright rays on all that are beneath it. Christ’s victory alone fills all the souls of men with invincible joy. It alone is without malice or evil.”

Let us therefore make every effort to offer this “victory of light and life” to those who are surrounded by darkness and death. Let us be bold in our adding our Orthodox voices in support of the value of every human person, born or unborn; let us offer consolation to the mothers who have undergone abortions and offer our prayers to them and to all who have been affected by this tragedy; let us affirm our Orthodox understanding of the human person as created in the image and likeness of God and yet in need of healing in Christ.

 

Let us, together with St. Nikolai, proclaim the great victory of Christ:

 

A mysterious victory, you will say? It is; but it is at the same time revealed to the whole human race, the living and the dead.

A generous victory, you will say? It is, and more than generous. Is not a mother more than generous when she, not once or twice, saves her children from snakes but, in order to save them for all time, goes bravely into the snakes’ very nest and burns them out?

A healing victory, you will say? It is, healing and saving for ever and ever. This gentle victory saves men from every evil and makes them sinless and immortal. Immortality without sinlessness would mean only the extending of evil’s reign, and of that of malice and wickedness, but immortality with sinlessness gives birth to unconfined joy, and makes men the brethren of God’s resplendent angels.”

 

With love in the Lord,

 

+TIKHON
Archbishop of Washington
Metropolitan of All America and Canada

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 

Rev. Daniel Mathewson –Rector January 4TH 2015

Parish phone: 814-734-3801                      

 

25636 N. Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412        

 

www.orthodxcrossingville.org

 

30th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 5. Forefeast of the Theophany. Sunday before Theophany. Synaxis of the Seventy Apostles: James (Jacob), the brother of the Lord; Mark the Evangelist; Luke the Evangelist; Cleophas, the brother of Joseph the Betrothed; Simeon, the son of Cleophas; Barnabas; Justus; Thaddæus; Ananias; Stephen the Archdeacon; Philip, Prochorus, Nicanor, Timon, and Parmenas of the Seven Deacons; Timothy; Titus; Philemon; Onesimus; Epaphras; Archippus; Silas; Silvanus; Crescens; Crispus; Epenetus; Andronicus; Stachys; Amplias; Urban; Narcissus; Apelles; Aristobulus; Herodion; Agabus; Rufus; Asyncritus; Phlegon; Hermes; Patrobus; Hermas; Linus; Gaius; Philologus; Lucius; Jason; Sosipater; Olympas; Tertius; Erastus; Quartus; Euodius; Onesiphorus; Clement; Sosthenes; Apollos; Tychicus; Epaphroditus; Carpus; Quadratus; Mark, called John; Zenas; Aristarchus; Pudens; Trophimus; Mark; Artemas; Aquila; Fortunatus; and Achaicus. (1st c.). Ven. Theoctistus, Abbot at Cucomo, in Sicily (800). Repose of St. Eustathius I, Archbishop of Serbia (ca. 1285). St. Aquila, Deacon, of the Kiev Caves (Far Caves—14th c.). Martyrs Zosimus the Hermit and Athanasius the Commentarisius (Superintendent of Prisoners), Anchorites, of Cilicia (3rd-4th c.). Ven. Euthymius and twelve other Monks, martyred at Vatopedi (Mt. Athos—1285). Ven. Onuphrius of Chilandari (Mt. Athos), Martyr (1818).


A BLESSED WELCOME to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection.This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach our priest Fr. Daniel after the service or at coffee hour in the parish hall.

* Please follow along in the Divine Liturgy Book in the Pew beginning on page 29. We are glad you are here, we do not practice “open” communion, which means you must be a baptized Orthodox Christian who is under a spiritual father confessor, making confession regularly in order to partake of the Holy Mysteries of Christ.

 

SERVICES THIS WEEK:

 

Monday Jan. 5th – Royal Hours- 9:00am

                             - Vigil for Theophany- 7pm (with the Great Blessing of Waters)

Tuesday, Jan. 6th – St. John's Divine Liturgy – 9:30am (With blessing of waters- our parish well) Blessing of Homes begins…Please sign up.

Friday, Jan. 9th – Baptism of Nathanthai Sangsuk (Jim Gall’s Fiancée’)– 6:00pm

Saturday, Jan. 10th -  Wedding of Jim and Natalia  - 4:00pm

                                         - Great Vespers  6:00pm

 

2 Timothy 4:5-8 (Epistle, Sunday Before)

But you be watchful in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry. For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing.

 

Mark 1:1-8 (Gospel, Sunday Before)

The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.

As it is written in the Prophets: “Behold, I send My messenger before Your face, Who will prepare Your way before You.” The voice of one crying in the wilderness: ‘Prepare the way of the LORD; Make His paths straight.’ “ John came baptizing in the wilderness and preaching a baptism of repentance for the remission of sins. Then all the land of Judea, and those from Jerusalem, went out to him and were all baptized by him in the Jordan River, confessing their sins. Now John was clothed with camel’s hair and with a leather belt around his waist, and he ate locusts and wild honey. And he preached, saying, “There comes One after me who is mightier than I, whose sandal strap I am not worthy to stoop down and loose. I indeed baptized you with water, but He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.

 

Announcements:

 

  • Today Sunday School will be joint Children and Adults.
  • Sunday School Teachers will have a brief meeting during Coffee Hour in the Library.
  • We are still accepting donations toward our Seminarian Tristan Gall- any gifts given will be matched by the Seminary, this is Tristan’s last year. Keep him in your prayers.
  • Mom’s Group – Thursday, Jan. 15th 9:30am-11:30am in the Hall- (Child care provided)
  • Men’s Fellowship meeting – Sun. Jan. 11th during coffee hour
  • Choir Practice (Following Vespers)– Jan. 24th, Feb. 14th
  • Please pick up your Envelopes if you have not already, also if you have not filled out a purple pledge form and survey please do so- they are available in the vestibule.

 

UPCOMING YOUTH AND FAMILY EVENTS IN THE ARCHDIOCESE:

 

Sunday, Jan. 25, 2015 - Winter Ice Skating Party, PPG Ice Rink, Downtown, Pittsburgh, 3-5PM

Sunday, Feb. 15, 2015 - Youth/Family Bowling Party, Mt. Lebanon Lanes, 3-5PM.

 

Erie Pro-Life Breakfast  January 17, 2015  9:00 a.m.
Bayfront Convention Center
1 Sassafras Pier
Erie, Pennsylvania
Reservations ... $14  Ages 3-12 ... $7
Under 3 Years ... Free Free child care with fun activities
SPECIAL GUEST SPEAKER 
Paul Kengor - Professor of Political Science and Executive Director of The Center for Vision and Values at Grove City College---Dr. Kengor's Topic: Death’s Progress: How did it get this bad? Will it continue to get worse?

 

 

FOCA National Basketball Tournament May 15-17, 2015
Hosted by Cap City O Club Columbus OH
Held at Independence OH
Hotel: Embassy Suites Cleveland-Independence at Rockside
$93.00 a night + tax Suites sleep 6 /Complimentary cooked to order breakfast

Sign up in hall if you are interested

 

Theophany House blessings: 10 Things

 

1. Houses are traditionally blessed with "Theophany water" each year. A house can be blessed at any time, but the usual season for yearly blessings is from Theophany until the beginning of the Lenten Triodion, which begins four Sundays before Great Lent begins. This is not a hard and fast rule, but a good rule of thumb.

 

2. Some people place great importance on "Theophany water". This is just water that has been blessed with the Great Blessing of the Waters service on Theophany. Another name for this water is simply "Holy Water". We can bless water any time of the year that there is a need for it. In Moscow, for example, there is a huge vat of holy water that the faithful partake of regularly. On  regular basis, the vat is refilled with water when it becomes empty, and this new water is blessed. The water blessed in for instance, August is no more and no less "holy" than the water blessed on Theophany.

 

3. Water is blessed using the “Great Blessing of the Waters” service two distinct times during Theophany: after Vespers on the Eve of Theophany and after the Divine Liturgy on Theophany. The blessings are identical, and the water is identical. 

 

4. In many places, it is traditional to bless water in lakes or rivers. In Russia, clergy often go to such a place, and bless the cold water after a hole has been cut in the ice. Many people will take a dip in the water after it is blessed.

 

5. When a home is blessed, the priest brings everything needed for the blessing:

Holy water

A "krupilla" (brush for flinging the holy water)

 

Each family should supply a bowl, candle and the family Theophany icon.

 

The family should provide the priest with a list of all family members, living and deceased.

 

The bowl and icon should be placed on a clean table with a cloth on it, preferably near the family icon corner. It is good for candles to be lit. The house should be clean, with all radios and televisions off.

 

The priest will bless all rooms of the house except the bathrooms. In homes with children, it is always good for the little ones to carry a candle or a small cross and "lead" the priest throughout the house. An elder member of the house may also do this.

 

6. The basic order for a simple home blessing is as follows.

 

a. The bowl of water, icon and lit candles are placed on a clean table. IF there is a censer, it may be lit.  

 

b. The priest begins the service with a blessing and the Trisagion prayers (O heavenly King through the "Our Father".) It is always preferable that the eldest of another member of the family say the Trisagion prayers.

 

c. After this the entire home is blessed, with the family walking with the priest holding candles and the Theophany icon while the Theophany Troparion is sung over and over:

 

Tone 1:  O Lord , when Thou, was baptized in the Jordan, ,

the worship of the Trinity was made manifest;

for the voice of the Father bare witness to Thee, 

calling Thee His beloved Son.

And the Spirit in the form of a dove

confirmed the truthfulness of His word.

O Christ our God, Who hast revealed Thyself

and hast enlightened the world, glory to Thee.

 

It is a very good idea for the family to sing this troparion, and know it by heart. Otherwise, of the priest has many houses to bless, his voice will get tired!

 

d. Upon finishing blessing the house, the family gathers again at the table, and a short litany is said for the welfare of the family. The priest should have been provided a list of all family members, including those who are ill.

 

e. After this a short prayer, and the service is ended.

 

f. It is entirely appropriate the deceased loved ones of the family be commemorated from a list provided to the priest.

 

g. Sometimes the family wants to give the priest a little something to eat; depending on the time the priest has, he may stay and visit.

 

7. When a priest visits, it is NEVER required that the family gives him money. The scripture tells us "Freely you have received, freely give".

 

It is a pious custom among some to give the priest a donation at this time, but this should never be though of as a requirement. The priest comes to the home because he wants God's blessing to be upon it, and to know those in his flock better and to be available to them.

 

 Living with a Calendar- Fr. Stephen Freeman

            The human relationship with time is a strange thing. The upright stones of neo-lithic human communities stand as silent reminders of our long interest in seasons and the movement of the heavens. Today our light-polluted skies shield many of us from the brilliant display of the night sky and rob us of the stars. The modern world is not only shielded from the stars, but from many aspects of time itself. Artificial lighting has made the setting of the sun into an unremarkable event and extended daylight into whatever hour we might wish. And though the seasons are worth noting, it is primarily their effect on clothing choices that seem important – foods have become omni-seasonal (for a price).

            With all of that, the Church’s calendar becomes an intrusion and a disruption almost an antique artifact. On the secular calendar, days of the week are but markers for which television shows are showing,  a fact which itself is increasingly irrelevant in the digital world of delivery-on-demand. Days and years have importance only for writing a check correctly (something that is itself disappearing). But the Church calendar colors days, marking some for fasting and others for feasting and makes of time a complication that demands attention.

            The Church calendar was once described to me as the “sanctification of time.” In this part of the modern world I would describe it not only as the sanctification of time, but the insistence that there even be time.

            This is a common pattern within Orthodox Christianity. To outsiders, the calendar may seem exotic – but it represents nothing more outlandish than an affirmation of what it means to be a human being. Our humanity is a tradition. I can only learn what it is to be a human being from another human being, someone who has successfully fulfilled that reality. Animals are no different. Birds do not suddenly fly – their flight is traditioned to them. Human beings learn to walk in a traditioned manner as well. Your computer or your phone will not teach you how to be a human being.

            So many things that modern people see as strange or unusual within the traditional life of Orthodox Christianity are no more than the encounter with living memory of what it is to be human. And time in its traditional form is one of them.

            What is time? Science describes time as a function of space. Space describes an expanse and time locates something within that expanse. And although this description of time is not “traditional,” it nevertheless works. Time helps us to locate ourselves. To be human includes time and space. I cannot be human everywhere – but only at a particular place and a particular time (which are the same thing). It is this aspect of our humanity that our jettisoning of time seeks to ignore.

            As we entertain ourselves to death, we become more and more abstracted from both space and time. Wandering in a digital world we have forgotten how to return to ourselves and simply be present to a particular point. Tragically, that particular point is always (and only) the place where we meet God. The calendar is thus something like an “appointment device.” This feast, this day, this time in my life, if I will keep the appointment, I can meet God.

            The feasts on the calendar are not appointments with memorials, the recollection of events long past. They are invitations to present tense moments in the liturgical life of the world. In those moments there is an intersection of the present and the eternal. They are theophanies into which we may enter.

            The events in Christ’s ministry that are celebrated (to use one example) are of little importance if viewed in a merely historical manner. It is not enough to say and remember that Christ died. The Christian faith is that I must become a partaker of Christ’s death. Christ is Baptized, but I must be a partaker of His Baptism. This is true of all the feasts and is the reason for our liturgical celebrations. The Church is not a memorial society – it is the living presence of Christ in the world and the primary means by which we may share in His presence.

            There is no time like the present for only in the present does time open its riches to us and bestow its gifts. Only at the present moment do the doors to eternity offer us union with what would otherwise seem lost.

            For He says: “In an acceptable time I have heard you, And in the day of salvation I have helped you.” Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation. (2Co 6:2).

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Fr. Daniel Mathewson - Rector  November 30th, 2014

Welcome to our humble parish. If you are visiting with us this week please join us for Coffee Hour in the Hall following the Divine Liturgy. Children are encouraged to attend Church School.


25th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 8. Holy and All-praised Apostle Andrew the First-callled (62). St. Frumentius, Archbishop of Abyssinia (Ethiopia—ca. 380).


Services this Week:

Wed. Dec. 3rd- Daily Vespers 6pm

Friday Dec. 5th Great Vespers 6pm

Sat. Dec. 6th – (Baptismal) Divine Liturgy 8am

Great Vespers 6pm   

Sun. Dec. 7th – Divine Liturgy 9:30 am Hours 9:15am

Ephesians 4:1-6 (Epistle)

I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called, with all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love, endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.

1 Corinthians 4:9-16 (Epistle, Apostle)

For I think that God has displayed us, the apostles, last, as men condemned to death; for we have been made a spectacle to the world, both to angels and to men. We are fools for Christ’s sake, but you are wise in Christ! We are weak, but you are strong! You are distinguished, but we are dishonored! To the present hour we both hunger and thirst, and we are poorly clothed, and beaten, and homeless. And we labor, working with our own hands. Being reviled, we bless; being persecuted, we endure; being defamed, we entreat. We have been made as the filth of the world, the offscouring of all things until now. I do not write these things to shame you, but as my beloved children I warn you. For though you might have ten thousand instructors in Christ, yet you do not have many fathers; for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the gospel. Therefore I urge you, imitate me.

Luke 13:10-17 (Gospel)

Now He was teaching in one of the synagogues on the Sabbath. And behold, there was a woman who had a spirit of infirmity eighteen years, and was bent over and could in no way raise herself up. But when Jesus saw her, He called her to Him and said to her, “Woman, you are loosed from your infirmity.” And He laid His hands on her, and immediately she was made straight, and glorified God. But the ruler of the synagogue answered with indignation, because Jesus had healed on the Sabbath; and he said to the crowd, “There are six days on which men ought to work; therefore come and be healed on them, and not on the Sabbath day.” The Lord then answered him and said, “Hypocrite! Does not each one of you on the Sabbath loose his ox or donkey from the stall, and lead it away to water it? So ought not this woman, being a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has bound – think of it – for eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the Sabbath? And when He said these things, all His adversaries were put to shame; and all the multitude rejoiced for all the glorious things that were done by Him.

John 1:35-51 (Gospel, Apostle)

Again, the next day, John stood with two of his disciples. And looking at Jesus as He walked, he said, “Behold the Lamb of God!” The two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus. Then Jesus turned, and seeing them following, said to them, “What do you seek?” They said to Him, “Rabbi” (which is to say, when translated, Teacher), “where are You staying? He said to them, “Come and see.” They came and saw where He was staying, and remained with Him that day (now it was about the tenth hour). One of the two who heard John speak, and followed Him, was Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother. He first found his own brother Simon, and said to him, “We have found the Messiah” (which is translated, the Christ). And he brought him to Jesus. Now when Jesus looked at him, He said, “You are Simon the son of Jonah. You shall be called Cephas” (which is translated, A Stone). The following day Jesus wanted to go to Galilee, and He found Philip and said to him, “Follow Me.” Now Philip was from Bethsaida, the city of Andrew and Peter. Philip found Nathanael and said to him, “We have found Him of whom Moses in the law, and also the prophets, wrote – Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.” And Nathanael said to him, “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” Philip said to him, “Come and see.” Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward Him, and said of him, “Behold, an Israelite indeed, in whom is no deceit!” Nathanael said to Him, “How do You know me?” Jesus answered and said to him, “Before Philip called you, when you were under the fig tree, I saw you.” Nathanael answered and said to Him, “Rabbi, You are the Son of God! You are the King of Israel!” Jesus answered and said to him, “Because I said to you, ‘I saw you under the fig tree,’ do you believe? You will see greater things than these.” And He said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, hereafter you shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of Man.”


Announcements:


Sunday School Today will be Joint Adults and Children.


Next Sunday Dec. 7th and Dec. 14th Sunday School Children and Youth will be practicing their annual Christmas Play during their time together.


The Sunday School Christmas Play will be held Sunday Deceember 21st.


Volunteers are needed for our St Nicholas Day bake sale preparations. Please see Karen for more details. Sale will begin at 11am and end at 3pm. Divine Liturgy will be celebrated for St Nicholas before the sale.


Saturday Dec. 13th the Men will meet for a short study over coffee, then we will have a work day around the parish: Leaves, branches, and general winterizing. Let Fr. Daniel know if you plan to attend.


Sunday school St Nicholas day retreat Dec. 6th from 4-7pm Confession of all Children and Youth will be available.


We welcome The Reader Eusebius (Don Wescott) and his wife Sally, Fr. Daniel and Matushka Gailś God Parents.


Please join us next week Saturday at 8:00am for the Reception of new members Nikolas and Olivia through Holy Baptism, and the Holy Crismation of Jess Davenport (Darren Hargett’s Fiance).


Missions Team is still collecting Coats and winter wear for the needy. Please clean our your closet and give to help other during these cold months.


We are also accepting donation to the Edinboro Food pantry, which directly helps the needy at the college and in the Edinboro Area. There is a box in the hall. Please no expired food.


Parish Council Meeting will be held on December 10th at 5:30pm with Vespers to begin.


Choir: See Barb for Choir practice times for Nativity.

What Happens When We Play (Pray)

In my previous article I compared children’s use of play to the place of ritual words and actions in the life of the Church. I absolutely did not mean to imply that one thing is like the other. I mean to say clearly that they are very much the same thing. And I say this both to change how we understand play as well as how we understand ritual words and action. Play is far more serious than people imagine – and ritual words and actions are more playful than they dare conceive.

The similarities are very instructive. Both have a structure behind them. Play, though sometimes spontaneous and purely creative, still has a reality behind it. Something is being enacted, whether it is a formal game or simply an exercise in imagination. The structure contained within play is part of its fun – it is never meaningless in its movements and actions.

As a young boy I enjoyed toy soldiers. I spent quiet hours creating battles and various scenarios of conflict. Occasionally these war games would involve another child and would last the better part of the day. There were rules to what we did, even if they were rarely spoken. Tanks and bazookas have a particular role and place within the order of battle, for example. Their placement would be critical to the outcome of the imaginary scene that was about to unfold.

I have sometimes tried to remember in my adulthood how we agreed that one side won and the other lost. There was a quiet agreement to allow the tragedy of the battle to unfold. Had there been a competition, a requirement to win, the game could not have gone forward. The game was the battle itself and its possible heroic actions. But the outcome could not be foreseen. Heroism remained, even for the vanquished.

Children who were no fun to play with were those who could not lose. Those who must win are frequently dangerous as well. They are bullies on the playground. And those who could not lose somehow mistook the game for something it was not. It was the something being enacted, a reality beneath and behind the game that mattered. It was this greater something that gave meaning to the actions and preserved the dignity of both winner and loser. For most games need winner and loser. If you are not willing to be the loser, you make yourself greater than the game. And so you cannot play. These are children who, sadly, have become literalists, robbed of the glory of their childhood and prematurely lacking in joy. They are anxious like adults whose lack of faith in the game itself makes it impossible for them to bear losing.

Ritual words and actions share this quality of something beneath and beyond. There is a holy game behind every word, every action. Something within the reality of salvation is shown forth and made present in the sacred play of worship. As the priest stands at the altar saying, “This is my body…this is my blood…” everyone agrees that what matters is that something beyond and beneath is also there. And for a time this man stands in the place of God, this sinner in the place of the Savior. And everyone joins in by proclaiming, “Amen.”

But there are those who will not come into the play. They have become literalists and grumble that “it is only bread and wine…nothing more.” They have forgotten their childhood and the wonder that is the world of play.

The games of children are not silly or full of nonsense. They are probably the most serious activities undertaken by human beings. For in their games, children are searching for the deeper pattern and learning to walk in unseen paths. They are engaging in transcendent activity and becoming ever so much more than they might be otherwise. A child becomes a man, a hero, a dragon.

And this most instinctive of human activities is a gift of God. It is a divine template placed in the mind and heart of a child, an unspoken knowledge that there is a deeper game, a set of rules that may be found and lived, a greater pattern discerned and mastered. Children know that they were born to be more and they seek it with every moment of the day.

It is the forgetfulness of this greatest gift that turns a man into something less than human. When we no longer look for the pattern and forget the way of the game we cease to be what we are created to be. One of the Fathers declared that man is mud who is called to become God. And so children play their muddy games and are not surprised that mud should have such a destiny.

The ritual words and actions that are the liturgical world are the holy game, the game of man and God. Before the world was created the Lamb was slain. And the game of slaying the Lamb would be played again and again. Abel and Noah knew the game and took the innocent from the flock, bound him and offered his life. And the blood of that life was smeared on the doorposts in the game of Passover where the slaves rose up and the masters’ firstborn fell. And the waters drowned the glory of Egypt.

But all of this was the play of children. All of the lambs were the first lamb and the last. Mary had a little lamb and took him to the Temple. And there she heard the ritual words:

“Behold, this Child is destined for the fall and rising of many in Israel, and for a sign which will be spoken against (yes, a sword will pierce through your own soul also), that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed.” (Luk 2:34-35)

And the words are spoken again with rite and ritual, children plunged into the death of the Lamb and clothed in white robes. And like a children’s game of ring around the roses, a priest leads the child around the font singing, “As many as have been Baptized into Christ have put on Christ!”

The difficulty comes for the adults who cannot bear the Game. They cease to see the deeper pattern or believe that something unseen is greater than what is seen. The Game becomes but a game and they mock the ritual as empty and without value. But it is the life devoid of the Game that has no value. The life that is not rooted in the deeper pattern is a life that has lost its shape. There is no song to be sung for such a shapeless thing, no dance that steadies its gait.

The Lamb slain from the foundation of the world continues to shape the world that is formed for His presence. Everything is Pascha. It is Word made flesh and flesh made Word and emptiness and fullness and redemption. Children continue to play and priests chant and sing and dance and say the words that must be said.

And a little child shall lead them.

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 November 16th,  2014

 Rev. Daniel Mathewson

Rector

Parish phone: 814-734-3801                      

 25636 N. Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412        

 

www.orthodxcrossingville.org

 

23rd SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 6. Holy Apostle and Evangelist Matthew (60 A.D.). St. Fulvianus, Prince of Ethiopia, in      Baptism Matthew (1st c.).

 

A BLESSED WELCOME to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection.This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach our priest Fr. Daniel after the service or at coffee hour in the parish hall.

* Please follow along in the Divine Liturgy Book in the Pew beginning on page 29. We are glad you are here, we do not practice “open” communion, which means you must be a baptized Orthodox Christian who is under a spiritual father confessor, making confession regularly in order to partake of the Holy Mysteries of Christ.

 

SERVICES THIS WEEK:

Thursday Nov. 20th – Great Vespers - 6:00pm (Confession available)

Fri. Nov. 21st The Entrance of the Theotokos (One of the 12 Holy Feast Days)

Sat. Nov. 22nd - NO Great Vespers

Sun. Nov. 23rd - Divine Liturgy – 9:30am - Hours 9:15am

UPCOMING SERVICES:

Wed. Nov. 26th –Akathist “Glory to God for all Things”- 7:00pm

Sat. Nov. 29th – Great Vespers- 6:00pm (Confession available)

Sun. Nov. 30th – Divine Liturgy (St. Andrew) 9:30am– Hours 9:15

Wed. Dec. 3rd- Daily Vespers- 6:00pm

Fri. Dec. 5th- Great Vespers – (St Nicholas) 6:00pm

Sat. Dec. 6th – Churching/Baptisms Divine Liturgy- (St Nicholas) 8:00am

                          - Great Vespers- 6:00pm (Confession available)

Sun. Dec. 7th – Divine Liturgy- 9:30am – Hours 9:15am

 

Ephesians 2:4-10 (Epistle)

 

But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.


Luke 10:25-37 (Gospel)

 

And behold, a certain lawyer stood up and tested Him, saying, “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” He said to him, “What is written in the law? What is your reading of it?” So he answered and said, “’You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind,’ and ‘your neighbor as yourself.’ “ And He said to him, “You have answered rightly; do this and you will live.” But he, wanting to justify himself, said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” Then Jesus answered and said: “A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, who stripped him of his clothing, wounded him, and departed, leaving him half dead. Now by chance a certain priest came down that road. And when he saw him, he passed by on the other side.

Likewise a Levite, when he arrived at the place, came and looked, and passed by on the other side. But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was. And when he saw him, he had compassion. So he went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine; and he set him on his own animal, brought him to an inn, and took care of him.

On the next day, when he departed, he took out two denarii, gave them to the innkeeper, and said to him, ‘Take care of him; and whatever more you spend, when I come again, I will repay you.’ So which of these three do you think was neighbor to him who fell among the thieves?

And he said, “He who showed mercy on him.” Then Jesus said to him, “Go and do likewise.”

 ANNOUNCMENTS

 TODAY! Sunday School immediately following Divine Liturgy. Students may come up to kiss the cross and then go to the hall for a snack and class. #STSLIVINGTHEFAITH

 Ladies Altar Society Meeting will meet TODAY during Coffee Hour to discuss baking schedule for the St. Nicholas Day Bake Sale.

 ** Please visit our parish bookstore. We have many new titles and other items. New Orthodox Study Bibles have just arrived. If you would like to order the new book for Adult Sunday School please see Jane Cap.

 

** If you would like to order the Adult Sunday School Book: Wisdom for to Day from the Early Church sign up on the stand in the narthex.

 

The Beautiful St. Tikhon’s Calendars will be arriving this week if you have ordered one please put 5$ in the box on the stand.

 

Please pray for the infirmed, Homebound and those in need:

Matushka Helen Miller, Timothy Alberti, Richard and Mary-Ann Onest, Valentina Emelianow, John and Donna Novak, Raymond Corbin, John Biko, Mary-Louise Gall, Karen Raydo, Kathleen Farrah, Christine Harman, Ashlyn Hulse, Rick Hulse, Jeremiah Stump, Gordon Baldwin, John Kindle, Marge Ritsvey, Paul Krause, Patricia Martinez, John Wasko, Jess Davenport, the Newly born Nikolas, Judah Mathewson (Anyone else to add to the list call Fr. Daniel)

 Sts. Peter and Paul Missions Team is sponsoring a Coat, Hat Glove and Scarf Drive for needy families in the area. See the entryway to the hall for more details or contact Anna Rachocki.

 Please contribute to our Alms box – this is one of the ways we minister to the needy in our area. We have helped 3 needy families this year with food cards.

UPCOMING Fall EVENTS:

 Youth Service RetreatThis Saturday Nov.22nd – Holy Assumption Downtown Pittsburgh 8am-5pm -age12 and up. Depart –7:00am Return – 8:00pm  We will be prepping for the Thanksgiving meal for the homeless and needy families delivered by the local police and FBI. Following the work we will be doing some sightseeing in Pittsburgh. See Sign up sheet in the Hall.

 

Young Mom’s Group will meet on Thursday Dec. 4th from 9:30-11:30am at the parish hall – see Mat. Gail for more details. (Child care volunteers are needed).

 

St. Nicholas Day – Dec. 6th Divine Liturgy with Baptisms and Chrismations – 9:30am – BAKE SALE FOLLOWING – Nut and Poppy seed rolls, nut horns and much more…tell your friends!!

 

Men’s Work Day Saturday Dec. 13th (St. Herman) 10am-12noon – Men will be beginning study in the Psalms (Men’s Fellowship meeting. Lexan windows, leaves and general winterizing.)

 

Ladies Bible Study Saturday Dec. 13th (St Herman) 10am- 12noon

Ladies will be continuing their study of the book of James.

 

IOCC Sunday is November 23

SYOSSET, NY [IOCC]

Each year, the Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops of the United States of America designates the Sunday before U.S. Thanksgiving Day as “IOCC Sunday.” This year’s commemoration falls on Sunday, November 23.  
International Orthodox Christian Charities(IOCC), the official humanitarian aid agency of the Assembly of Bishops, is supported by generous donations from Orthodox Christians.  Since its establishment in 1992, IOCC has provided emergency relief, sustainable development and self-help programs to people in need worldwide.  Programs are active in more than 50 countries across Europe, Asia, Africa, North and South America. All assistance is provided based on need without discrimination and benefits orphans, refugees and displaced persons, the elderly, school children, families and people with disabilities.  The IOCC website has news of country programs and of the growing IOCC Emergency Response Network.
Contributions can be made on-line at www.iocc.org, by toll free call to 1-877-803-IOCC (4622), or by mail to IOCC, PO Box 17398, Baltimore, MD 21297-0429.

 

**We will take up a collection next week for IOCC at kissing of the cross following Divine Liturgy. 

 

Playing with God

By Fr. Stephen Freeman 

 

          There are things that children understand instinctively. And the things that children know and understand are worth consideration. They have much to teach us.

                Among the most natural things children do isplay. Depending on how you define play, it is among the first activities in which we engage. It comes to dominate the lives of children and is the hallmark of their existence. Play is what children do.

                It is quite interesting to read discussions about the theory of play. Why do children do it? Developmental theorists (Piaget most famously) see play as essential for children’s growth and maturation. My own observation of these theories is their drive to discover some utility for play. All of their explanations seek to find a purpose for play beyond itself. Children play in order to do or become something else.

                All of us as adults probably remember the end of childhood. Play became less and less possible as school and more “serious” activities became more demanding. Most adults have not lost their capacity for play. But they have little time for it and frequently consider it a luxury, even a frivolous waste of time.

                I would like to suggest quite the opposite. Play is among the most essential of human activities and is extremely important in our relationship with God.

We were created for play because God Himself likes to play.

 

This last statement will (obviously) require some support. I will get to that later in the article. But first, we return to children. What are children doing when they play? Clearly they are “having fun,” but their “fun” can often be quite serious. Play frequently has rules – indeed no football fan is more insisting on correct observance of the rules than a child at play.

But what is a child doing?

                In simple, straightforward terms, a child at play is a child engaging in ritual activities. Rituals have rules, meaning, purpose, even repetition. It is not childish – it is merely human.

                I first began to think about this as I watched children in Church. Unlike the nervous self-consciousness of Orthodox inquirers, children take to the ritual life of the Church as though they were born to it. They understand kissing icons, bowing, censing, pretty much the whole of a Divine Liturgy, without so much as a question (for they seem to understand it long before they are capable of speech).

                Unlike most adult activities (particularly modern adult activities) ritual is not driven so much by word as by action. Its words themselves are ritualized (not unlike a children’s rhyme). And the actions often speak for themselves.

                Many priests have noticed in their parishes young children who “play Church.” I have seen children (including a grandson) grab a small toy at the end of a string, begin to swing it and “cense.” I have served liturgies where a young child has brought his own censer to the service so he can “cense along.” Worried mothers have sometimes asked, “Is this ok?” I not only think it’s ok. I’m flattered and welcome the company.

                In our Cathedral in Dallas (I was once told) there was a teenage boy who was mentally handicapped, who would go up on the solea when the bishop was censing, and swing his own “play” censer. A number of the parishioners were alarmed, but Archbishop Dmitri (of blessed memory) assured them that everything was fine. Vladyka’s story about this gave me the assurance to be patient with children myself.

It is adults who do not understand liturgy and ritual. Some adults, having lost their true humanity, even use phrases such as “empty ritual.” Like many other enemies of tradition, they eradicate all the truly human pursuits in the name of “higher” rational activities, invented only in the last few hundred years.

                Play is a primary form of human learning, an activity in which we engage in the patterning required in our lives. Like the early babbling of a child by which they slowly learn to replicate the sounds of the adults around them, play establishes the same thing for other activities. And this form of learning apparently extends to things divine.

                Those who utter phrases such as “empty ritual” (something I’ve heard all my life) forget that it is God who first gave ritual to the people of Israel. This primary story about the faith runs counter to modern intuitions. For we presume that real things and true things are in the mind. It is thought and sentiment that we consider to hold the lofty place of the holy. But it isritual that is given this place in the Scriptures.

                In the later chapters of Exodus, we are told of Moses’ 40 days on the mountain in the presence of the Lord. During that time he is shown “the pattern” of all the furnishings of the Tabernacle. He is given the “pattern” of worship as well – the ritual of Israel. Christian understanding from the New Testament forward has always seen these patterns as a foreshadowing of Christ and His Pascha. The gospel was hidden in the patterns given to Moses.

                I will stretch this a bit and suggest that God taught Moses how to “play Pascha.” For, like a child whose games foreshadow its later life (dolls, playing house, etc.), so the rituals of Israel foreshadowed the mystery of the Kingdom revealed in the death and resurrection of Christ.

                The foreshadowing is nothing new – it is my suggestion that we place this in the category of “play” that might seem shocking. This is because we imagine “play” to be somehow of little value, a diminutive activity that reduces the importance of its subject. But this is a deep distortion of play. As the primary focus of children, play is among the most important of all human activities. We do not disparage the importance of a child’s learning to walk. Play is just as essential – and perhaps for a greater purpose than learning.

                The activity of play is falsely seen as the sole province of children. Human beings never cease to play. And though modern culture sees play as frivolous and even wasteful (productivity of things is given the highest value), we nevertheless devote a significant amount of money to play.

Not all play is equal, of course. Some play is frivolous, or even destructive of our humanity. Much of the play in our meaning-starved culture is a thin substitute for the authentic rituals of faith. It is not absurd when people observe the near religious status of public sport in many areas of the world. Such games seek to fill a deep religious need in the heart of modern culture. That they fall so far short of true transcendence, failing even to rise to the nobility of the game being played, is simply part of the tragedy of the modern world.

But the “game” of the Divine Liturgy is something else. There the presence of God is so profound that we hesitate to use the word “game” to describe the ritual play of the service. But we are indeed children, who, though having transcended the revelation given on Mt. Sinai, nevertheless continue to point beyond ourselves towards something that is mystically made present in the ritual action of the Eucharistic assembly.

St. Paul notes:

When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things. For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known. (1Co 13:11-12)

The maturity to which he refers, when childish things are at last put away, is not a phenomenon of this age – it belongs to the age to come when “we shall know just as we are known.” But in this age, we continue as children, playing at Pascha, until Pascha itself swallows us into the complete maturity of our humanity.

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 Rev. Daniel Mathewson ActingRector –

November 9th, 2014

 Parish phone: 814-734-3801                      

 25636 N. Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412        

 

www.orthodxcrossingville.org

 

22nd SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 5. Martyrs Onesiphorus and Porphyrius of Ephesus (3rd-4th c.). Ven. Matrona, Abbess, of Constantinople (ca. 492). Ven. Theoctiste of the Isle of Lesbos (881). Ven. Onísifor (Onesiphorus) the Confessor, of the Kiev Caves (Near Caves—1148). Martyr Alexander of Thessalonica (4th c.). Martyr Anthony of Apamea (5th c.). Ven. John the Short, of Egypt (5th c.). Ss. Eustolia (610) and Sosipatra (ca. 625), of Constantinople. St. Nectarios Kephalas, Metropolitan of Pentapolis (1920). Ven. Euthymius, Founder of Dochiariou Monastery (Mt. Athos—10th c.), and Ven. Neophytus, Co-founder of the Monastery. Icon of the Most-holy Theotokos, “SHE WHO IS QUICK TO HEAR”.

 

A BLESSED WELCOME to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection.This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach our priest Fr. Daniel after the service or at coffee hour in the parish hall.

* Please follow along in the Divine Liturgy Book in the Pew beginning on page 29. We are glad you are here, we do not practice “open” communion, which means you must be a baptized Orthodox Christian who is under a spiritual father confessor, making confession regularly in order to partake of the Holy Mysteries of Christ.

 

SERVICES THIS WEEK:

Wed. Nov. 12th – Daily Vespers- 6:00pm

Sat. Nov. 15th (Beginning of the Nativity Fast) Great Vespers – 6:00pm                                                                                                                                                                                         (Confession available)

Sun. Nov. 16th - Divine Liturgy – 9:30am - Hours 9:15am

 

 

Galatians 6:11-18 (Epistle)

 

See with what large letters I have written to you with my own hand!As many as desire to make a good showing in the flesh, these would compel you to be circumcised, only that they may not suffer persecution for the cross of Christ.For not even those who are circumcised keep the law, but they desire to have you circumcised that they may boast in your flesh.But God forbid that I should boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, but a new creation.And as many as walk according to this rule, peace and mercy be upon them, and upon the Israel of God.From now on let no one trouble me, for I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus.Brethren, the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Amen.

 

Luke 8:41-56 (Gospel)

 

And behold, there came a man named Jairus, and he was a ruler of the synagogue. And he fell down at Jesus’ feet and begged Him to come to his house,for he had an only daughter about twelve years of age, and she was dying. But as He went, the multitudes thronged Him.Now a woman, having a flow of blood for twelve years, who had spent all her livelihood on physicians and could not be healed by any,came from behind and touched the border of His garment. And immediately her flow of blood stopped.And Jesus said, “Who touched Me?” When all denied it, Peter and those with him said, “Master, the multitudes throng and press You, and You say, ‘Who touched Me?’ “But Jesus said, “Somebody touched Me, for I perceived power going out from Me.”Now when the woman saw that she was not hidden, she came trembling; and falling down before Him, she declared to Him in the presence of all the people the reason she had touched Him and how she was healed immediately.And He said to her, “Daughter, be of good cheer; your faith has made you well. Go in peace.”While He was still speaking, someone came from the ruler of the synagogue’s house, saying to him, “Your daughter is dead. Do not trouble the Teacher.”But when Jesus heard it, He answered him, saying, “Do not be afraid; only believe, and she will be made well.”

When He came into the house, He permitted no one to go in except Peter, James, and John, and the father and mother of the girl.Now all wept and mourned for her; but He said, “Do not weep; she is not dead, but sleeping.”And they ridiculed Him, knowing that she was dead.But He put them all outside, took her by the hand and called, saying, “Little girl, arise.”Then her spirit returned, and she arose immediately. And He commanded that she be given something to eat.And her parents were astonished, but He charged them to tell no one what had happened.

ANNOUNCMENTS

 ****Notice: Our Parish Annual Meeting will be held TODAY Sunday November 9th following Divine Liturgy.

 **Proposed By Law amendment: to Amend By-law Article VII, Section 2A from “The Council shall consist of a minimum of fifteen members and a maximum of eighteen members (with a quorum of 8).” to “The Council shall consist of a minimum of twelve members and a maximum of fifteen members (with a quorum of six).”

 

** Please visit our parish bookstore. We have many new titles and other items. New Orthodox Study Bibles have just arrived. If you would like to order the new book for Adult Sunday School please see Jane Cap.

 Please pray for the infirmed, Homebound and those in need:

Matushka Helen Miller, Timothy Alberti, Richard and Mary-Ann Onest, Valentina Emelianow, John and Donna Novak, Raymond Corbin, John Biko, Mary-Louise Gall, Karen Raydo, Kathleen Farrah, Christine Harman, Ashlyn Hulse, Rick Hulse, Jeremiah Stump, Gordon Baldwin, John Kindle, Marge Ritsvey, Paul Krause, Patricia Martinez, John Wasko, Jess Davenport, the Newly born Nikolas, Judah Mathewson (Anyone else to add to the list call Fr. Daniel)

 

Sts. Peter and Paul Missions Team is sponsoring a Coat, Hat Glove and Scarf Drive for needy families in the area. See the entryway to the hall for more details or contact Anna Rachoki.

 Anyone wishing to rake leaves or do any kind of upkeep on our property please come by anytime.

 Please contribute to our Alms box – this is how we minister to the needy in our area. We have helped 3 needy families this year with food cards.

UPCOMING Fall EVENTS:

 TODAY! For Students 4th grade and above will join the Adult Sunday School led by Fr. Daniel will follow liturgy in the Hall. #STSLIVINGTHEFAITH

 Women’s Bible Study - Saturday, Nov. 15th (continuing study of James)

 Youth Service Retreat – Saturday Nov.22nd – Holy Assumption Downtown Pittsburgh 8am-5pm -age12 and up. Depart –7:00am  Return – 8:00pm We will be prepping for the Thanksgiving meal for the homeless and needy families delivered by the local police and FBI. Following the work we will be doing some sightseeing in Pittsburgh. See Sign up sheet in the Hall.

Young Mom’s Group will meet on Thursday Dec. 4th from 9:30-11:30am at the parish hall – see Mat. Gail for more details. (Child care volunteers are needed).

 Thursday, November 13 - Clergy seminar - St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral - “Canon Law / OCA Statute Revision Seminar” - Fr. Alexander Rentel(9 AM Liturgy for St. John Chrysostom begins the day).

 St. Nicholas Day – Dec. 6th Divine Liturgy with Baptisms and Chrismations – 9:30am – BAKE SALE FOLLOWING – Nut and Poppy sed rolls, nut horns and much more…tell your friends!!

 Men’s Work Day Saturday Dec. 13th 9am-12noon – Men will be beginning study in the Psalms (Men’s Fellowship meeting. Lexan windows, leaves and general winterizing.)

 For all Veterans of Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

        On this Sunday, in lue of the up coming Veterans Day Commemoration in America on November 11th we the people of Sts. Peter and Paul honor those men and women who have served in our countries armed services. We also honor all those who served jobs and family at home and suffered many hardship and sacrifices for the sake of our country. Today we will remember them in name during the singing of Memory Eternal following the Divine Liturgy. 

 

Does It Matter How I Feel?

It is common to hear complaints about the materialism of our modern culture. For it is certainly the case that much attention is given to “things” – whether making them, purchasing them, wearing them, or simply owning them. The modern world enjoys material wealth beyond anything ever imagined in human history. But it is a mistake to describe us as materialists. Materialism professes a certain concept of material goods. Atheist materialism, for example, holds that matter is all that exists – going so far in some cases as to think of the human mind as simply a strange artifact of the material world itself – chemicals and electrons firing across the synapses of the brain yielding the illusion of a soul.

                  Classical Christianity has a form of materialism, holding that the material world is created by the good God and that it has inherent value and meaning. St. Maximus (and many others) wrote in great detail about the logoi of created things, their inner meaning and reason. These are created through the Logos, the only-begotten Son of God. Such an understanding of creation views matter as something of an icon of the mind of God. The contemplation of thelogoi of creation is one of the higher stages in the journey of salvation.

                  Our culture’s fascination with material things has almost nothing to do with a particular view of materiality. Video games can be just as satisfying as material events. What we find interesting about material things is precisely what we find interesting about all things: how they make us feel. It is our feelings and sentiments (thoughts experienced as feelings) that are the foundation of modern culture.

                  This phenomenon of sentiment applies to ideas (politics, sports, etc.) as well as material things. It is often a primary driving force behind the religious affiliation of modern believers. The constant barrage of polling and marketing samples that surround us are based on this phenomenon. Polls measure how people “feel” about things – not what they “think.” Thoughts are relatively stable – but feelings change with the wind.

                  True Christian materialism, seeing objects as possessing inherent worth and value, generally strikes modern people as “superstitious.” We prefer objects as souvenirs, reminders of what we have felt, but never as actual bearers of the holy.

                  Our modern disdain for the material world is especially displayed in our treatment of the human body.

                  Years ago, when I was a newly-ordained Episcopal deacon, I was asked to assist at a “burial” at a beach some 100 miles from the parish. Two daughters committed the ashes of their mother at a local beach they had visited together during their mother’s last months. She had told them to put her ashes there so that whenever they visited the beach they would think of her.

                  It was clear that the ashes themselves held no value for the women. Their mother herself was now a set of sentiments, a collection of memories. Her life was measured in their thoughts and feelings and nothing more. The committal was “beautiful,” filled with feeling. I am sure that the beach continues to be a place that holds a special memory for this family.

                  But this is a far remove from the Christian faith. For many modern believers, the bodies of the deceased are almost an embarrassment, a difficult and expensive inconvenience. What is valued is sentiment. The modern “celebration of life” that is increasingly replacing funerals in the US, often takes place without the remains (or “cremains”) of the departed. It is a festival of sentiment – very strongly held and deeply valued, but sentiment nonetheless.

                  All of this would be little more than a casual observation about a mere cultural phenomenon were it not also becoming the actual content of contemporary Christian believing. Sentiment has become a way of life to which no one living in our modern world is immune. Indeed, most are not only infected with its presence, but think it is normal and important.

                  To say that our culture is governed by sentiment is not at all the same thing as saying it is overly rational. There was a time when Western civilization was marked by a high degree of rationalism, but that time has long since passed. Sentiment has little, if anything, to do with rationality, or with conscious thought. Sentiment is a product of the passions.

                  The passions are passive and reactive in nature. They are not the result of consideration or rational process. They are more accurately described as how we “feel” about something rather than what we “think.” The fact that “think” and “feel” are today used almost interchangeably is a result of sentimentality replacing rationality.

                  The Christian faith cannot be acquired as a passion. That we come to have a set of feelings attached to various religious ideas or practices should not be confused with faith, nor with the process of salvation. It is little more than an expression of a temporary pleasure. It will never produce a stable spiritual life.

                  The nature of the passions, and of sentiment as their product, is rooted in the cycle of pain and pleasure. We run from pain and we seek pleasure. But in this distorted manner of living, we are entirely reactive and constantly driven by forces beyond ourselves. The nature of modern marketing (and thus of our entire consumer culture) works through this passion-driven model. Pain and pleasure in their varied forms have become the basis of our entire existence.

                  The Christian faith in its classical form sees our slavery to the passions as the mechanism of sin – it always draws us away from God and true human existence. Human life is simply not possible if it is completely given over to the passions. The need for suffering and sacrifice, for bearing pain and even embracing it in certain circumstances, is a requirement for life in this world. Were no one willing to bear pain, no child would be born, much less reach adulthood. That childbearing has come to be delayed (or rejected) is itself a testament to the power of modern sentiment.

                  Christ equated the way of salvation with the way of the Cross. His reference was not only to His own Cross, but to the voluntary and shared suffering of all. It is for this reason that Orthodox Christianity is always “ascetical.” Orthodox Christians learn to practice self-denial as a normative part of their lives. They fast, pray, give alms, practice hospitality, as part of the simple effort of learning to be truly and properly human. Orthodox services are often long and “boring” by some standards. But the “boredom” is a reflection of an event that is not centered on the production of human pleasure. The purpose of worship is to offer praise and thanksgiving to God. In the tradition of the Church, it also offers a measure of self-denial.

                  Learning to recognize sentiment for what it is and not to put it forward as a justification for our lives and actions is an essential part of Christian discipleship. How we “feel” is little more than a report on the state of dopamine in our brains. It is not without value, but it can never be the primary value. No time in human history has been as dominated by sentiment as our own age. We are thus not the wisest nor the most knowledgeable generation – we are the most gullible and the most easily manipulated. The salesmen and hucksters of our age, whether religious, political, moral or otherwise are puppet masters. And they themselves are puppets – but to a much darker and nefarious lord.

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 

Rev. Daniel Mathewson

ActingRector –

November 2nd, 2014

 

Parish phone: 814-734-3801                      

 

25636 N. Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412        

 

www.orthodxcrossingville.org

21st SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 4. Synaxis of the Holy Unmercenaries. Martyrs Acindynus, Pegasius, Aphthonius, Elpidephorus and Anempodistus, of Persia (ca. 341-345). St. Marcian of Cyprus (381-391).


A BLESSED WELCOME to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection.This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach our priest Fr. Daniel after the service or at coffee hour in the parish hall.

* Please follow along in the Divine Liturgy Book in the Pew beginning on page 29. We are glad you are here, we do not practice “open” communion, which means you must be a baptized Orthodox Christian who is under a spiritual father confessor, making confession regularly in order to partake of the Holy Mysteries of Christ.

 

 SERVICES THIS WEEK:

 Wed. Nov. 5th – Daily Vespers- 6:00pm

Fri. Nov. 7th – Great Vespers – 6:00pm

Sat. Nov. 8th – Synaxsis of the Archangel Michael – Divine liturgy- 9:30am

                          - Great Vespers- 6:00pm  (Confession available)

Sun. Nov. 9th - Divine Liturgy – 9:30am - Hours 9:15am

 

Galatians 2:16-20 (Epistle)

knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law but by faith in Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, that we might be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the law; for by the works of the law no flesh shall be justified.But if, while we seek to be justified by Christ, we ourselves also are found sinners, is Christ therefore a minister of sin? Certainly not!For if I build again those things which I destroyed, I make myself a transgressor.For I through the law died to the law that I might live to God.I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.

1 Corinthians 12:27-13:8 (Epistle, Unmercenaries)

Now you are the body of Christ, and members individually. And God has appointed these in the church: first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, administrations, varieties of tongues. Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Are all workers of miracles?   Do all have gifts of healings? Do all speak with tongues? Do all interpret?   But earnestly desire the best gifts. And yet I show you a more excellent way. Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing. Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away.

Luke 8:26-39 (Gospel)

Then they sailed to the country of the Gadarenes, which is opposite Galilee.And when He stepped out on the land, there met Him a certain man from the city who had demons for a long time. And he wore no clothes, nor did he live in a house but in the tombs.When he saw Jesus, he cried out, fell down before Him, and with a loud voice said, “What have I to do with You, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I beg You, do not torment me!”For He had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man. For it had often seized him, and he was kept under guard, bound with chains and shackles; and he broke the bonds and was driven by the demon into the wilderness.Jesus asked him, saying, “What is your name?” And he said, “Legion,” because many demons had entered him.And they begged Him that He would not command them to go out into the abyss.Now a herd of many swine was feeding there on the mountain. So they begged Him that He would permit them to enter them. And He permitted them.Then the demons went out of the man and entered the swine, and the herd ran violently down the steep place into the lake and drowned.When those who fed them saw what had happened, they fled and told it in the city and in the country.Then they went out to see what had happened, and came to Jesus, and found the man from whom the demons had departed, sitting at the feet of Jesus, clothed and in his right mind. And they were afraid.They also who had seen it told them by what means he who had been demon-possessed was healed.Then the whole multitude of the surrounding region of the Gadarenes asked Him to depart from them, for they were seized with great fear. And He got into the boat and returned.Now the man from whom the demons had departed begged Him that he might be with Him. But Jesus sent him away, saying,Return to your own house, and tell what great things God has done for you. And he went his way and proclaimed throughout the whole city what great things Jesus had done for him.

Matthew 10:1, 5-8 (Gospel, Unmercenaries)

And when He had called His twelve disciples to Him, He gave them power over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease.These twelve Jesus sent out and commanded them, saying: “Do not go into the way of the Gentiles, and do not enter a city of the Samaritans.But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.And as you go, preach, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons. Freely you have received, freely give.

 ANNOUNCMENTS

Many years to our Elder John Sekel. John will be moving to the Pittsburgh area this week please give him your best wishes and we ask that God will continue to bless him.

 ****Notice: Our Parish Annual Meeting will be held on Sunday November 9th following Divine Liturgy.

 **Proposed By Law amendment: to Amend By-law Article VII, Section 2A from “The Council shall consist of a minimum of fifteen members and a maximum of eighteen members (with a quorum of 8).” to “The Council shall consist of a minimum of twelve members and a maximum of fifteen members (with a quorum of six).”

 **All Parish Organization Presidents need to submit a written report to Fr. Daniel or Pres. Alan Natalie by November 2nd 2014.

 Youth Service Retreat – Saturday Nov.22nd – Holy Assumption Downtown Pittsburgh 8am-5pm -age12 and up. Depart –7:00am  Return – 8:00pm We will be prepping for the Thanksgiving meal for the homeless and needy families delivered by the local police and FBI. Following the work we will be doing some sightseeing in Pittsburgh. See Sign up sheet in the Hall.

** Please visit our parish bookstore. We have many new titles and other items. New Orthodox Study Bibles have just arrived. If you would like to order the new book for Adult Sunday School please see Jane Cap.

 Please pray for the infirmed, Homebound and those in need:

Matushka Helen Miller, Timothy Alberti, Richard and Mary-Ann Onest, Valentina Emelianow, John and Donna Novak, Raymond Corbin, John Biko, Mary-Louise Gall, Karen Raydo, Kathleen Farrah, Christine Harman, Ashlyn Hulse, Rick Hulse, Jeremiah Stump, Gordon Baldwin, John Kindle, Marge Ritsvey, Paul Krause, Patricia Martinez, John Wasko, Jess Davenport, the Newly born Nicholas (Anyone else to add to the list call Fr. Daniel)

 Sts. Peter and Paul Missions Team is sponsoring a Coat etc. Drive for needy families in the area. See the entryway to the hall for more details or contact Anna Rachoki.

 Anyone wishing to rake leaves or do any kind of upkeep on our property please come by anytime

 Please contribute to our Alms box – this is how we minister to the needy in our area.

 

 UPCOMING Fall EVENTS:

 Sunday Church School continues TODAY! Students please get a blessing and depart to class after Divine Liturgy. Adult Sunday School will follow liturgy. #STSLIVINGTHEFAITH

 - Catechumens class will be held- Nov. 1st  following Great Vespers.

 -Today-Nov. 2nd for Coffee Hour the Ladies Altar Society will hold a going away dinner for John Sekel who is moving to Pittsburgh. Many Years John!

 -Youth Group – Saturday, Nov. 8th - Following Vespers- Parish Hall

 -Young Moms Group will meet on Thursday Nov. 6th from 9:30-11:30am at the parish hall – see Mat. Gail for more details. (Child care volunteers are needed).

 -Thursday, November 13 - Clergy seminar - St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral - “Canon Law / OCA Statute Revision Seminar” - Fr. Alexander Rentel(9 AM Liturgy for St. John Chrysostom begins the day).

 St. Nicholas Day – Dec. 6th Divine Liturgy with Baptisms and Chrismations – 9:30am

 Men’s Work Day Saturday Dec. 13th 9am-12noon

(Men’s Fellowship meeting. Gutter cleaning, Lexan windows, leaves and general winterizing.)

The Holy Wonderworkers and Unmercenary Physicians Cosmas and Damian

 The Holy Wonderworkers and Unmercenary Physicians Cosmas and Damian and their mother St Theodota were natives of Asia Minor (some sources say Mesopotamia). Their pagan father died while they were still quite small children. Their mother raised them in Christian piety. Through her own example, and by reading holy books to them, St Theodota preserved her children in purity of life according to the command of the Lord, and Cosmas and Damian grew up into righteous and virtuous men.

                  Trained and skilled as physicians, they received from the Holy Spirit the gift of healing people’s illnesses of body and soul by the power of prayer. They even treated animals. With fervent love for both God and neighbor, they never took payment for their services. They strictly observed the command of our Lord Jesus Christ, “Freely have you received, freely give.” (Mt. 10:8). The fame of Sts Cosmas and Damian spread throughout all the surrounding region, and people called them unmercenary physicians.

                  Once, the saints were summoned to a grievously ill woman named Palladia, whom all the doctors had refused to treat because of her seemingly hopeless condition. Through faith and through the fervent prayer of the holy brothers, the Lord healed the deadly disease and Palladia got up from her bed perfectly healthy and giving praise to God. In gratitude for being healed and wishing to give them a small gift, Palladia went quietly to Damian. She presented him with three eggs and said, “Take this small gift in the Name of the Holy Life-Creating Trinity, the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.” Hearing the Name of the Holy Trinity, the unmercenary one did not dare to refuse.

                  When St Cosmas learned what had happened, became very sad, for he thought that his brother had broken their strict vow. On his deathbed he gave instructions that his brother should not be buried beside him. St Damian also died shortly afterward, and everyone wondered where St Damian’s grave should be. But through the will of God a miracle occurred. A camel, which the saints had treated for its wildness, spoke with a human voice saying that they should have no doubts about whether to place Damian beside Cosmas, because Damian did not accept the eggs from the woman as payment, but out of respect for the Name of God. The venerable relics of the holy brothers were buried together at Thereman (Mesopotamia).

                  Many miracles were worked after the death of the holy unmercenaries. There lived at Thereman, near the church of Cosmas and Damian, a certain man by the name of Malchus. One day he went on a journey, leaving his wife all alone for what would be a long time. He prayerfully entrusted her to the heavenly protection of the holy brothers. But the Enemy of the race of mankind took on the appearance of one of Malchus’ friends, and planned to kill the woman. A certain time went by, and this man went to her at home and said that Malchus had sent him to bring her to him. The woman believed him and went along. He led her to a solitary place intending to kill her. The woman, seeing that disaster threatened her, called upon God with deep faith.

                  Two fiercesome men then appeared, and the devil let go of the woman and fled, falling off a cliff. The two men led the woman home. At her own home, bowing to them deeply she asked, “ My rescuers, to whom I shall be grateful to the end of my days, what are your names?”

                  They replied, “We are the servants of Christ, Cosmas and Damian,” and became invisible. The woman with trembling and with joy told everyone about what had happened to her. Glorifying God, she went up to the icon of the holy brothers and tearfully offered prayers of thanksgiving for her deliverance. And from that time the holy brothers were venerated as protectors of the holiness and inviolability of Christian marriage, and as givers of harmony to conjugal life. From ancient times, their veneration spread also to Russia.

                  The Unmercenary Saints Cosmas and Damian of Asia Minor should not be confused with the Unmercenary Saints Cosmas and Damian of Rome (July 1), or the Unmercenary Saints Cosmas and Damian of Arabia (October 17).

 

 Moscow, Russia: 220th Anniversary of Orthodox Christianity in North America celebrated

 On October 7, 2014, the 220th Anniversary of Orthodox Christianity in North America was celebrated at the Orthodox Church in America’s Representation Church of the Great Martyr Catherine, Moscow, Russia. Archimandrite Alexander [Pihach], parish Dean and OCA Representative to the Moscow Patriarchate, presided at the celebration of the Akathistos Hymn honoring the Saints of North America, which was celebrated in the English language. A reception followed, at which numerous researchers in the history of the Church in North America were present.


To mark the occasion, the parish’s bells were rung. Simultaneously, with the blessing of His Grace, Bishop David of Sitka and Alaska, bells were rung in parish churches across Alaska. Bells also were rung at the OCA Chancery, Syosset, NY and at the Valaam Monastery, from which Saint Herman and his fellow missionaries who arrived in Kodiak, AK in 1794 hailed.

SERVICES THIS WEEK:

 

Wed. Oct. 29th – Daily Vespers- 6:00pm

Sat. Nov. 1st  - Great Vespers- 6:00pm (Confession available)

Sun. Nov. 2nd - Divine Liturgy – 9:30am - Hours 9:15am

2 Timothy 2:1-10 (Epistle, St. Demetrius)

You therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. And the things that you have heard from me among many witnesses, commit these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also. You therefore must endure hardship as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. No one engaged in warfare entangles himself with the affairs of this life, that he may please him who enlisted him as a soldier. And also if anyone competes in athletics, he is not crowned unless he competes according to the rules. The hardworking farmer must be first to partake of the crops. Consider what I say, and may the Lord give you understanding in all things. Remember that Jesus Christ, of the seed of David, was raised from the dead according to my gospel,

for which I suffer trouble as an evildoer, even to the point of chains; but the word of God is not chained. Therefore I endure all things for the sake of the elect, that they also may obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory.

Galatians 1:11-19 (Epistle)

But I make known to you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached by me is not according to man.For I neither received it from man, nor was I taught it, but it came through the revelation of Jesus Christ.For you have heard of my former conduct in Judaism, how I persecuted the church of God beyond measure and tried to destroy it.And I advanced in Judaism beyond many of my contemporaries in my own nation, being more exceedingly zealous for the traditions of my fathers.But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother’s womb and called me through His grace,to reveal His Son in me, that I might preach Him among the Gentiles, I did not immediately confer with flesh and blood,nor did I go up to Jerusalem to those who were apostles before me; but I went to Arabia, and returned again to Damascus.Then after three years I went up to Jerusalem to see Peter, and remained with him fifteen days.But I saw none of the other apostles except James, the Lord’s brother.

John 15:17-16:2 (Gospel, St. Demetrius)

These things I command you, that you love one another.If the world hates you, you know that it hated Me before it hated you.If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.Remember the word that I said to you, ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you. If they kept My word, they will keep yours also.But all these things they will do to you for My name’s sake, because they do not know Him who sent Me.If I had not come and spoken to them, they would have no sin, but now they have no excuse for their sin.He who hates Me hates My Father also.If I had not done among them the works which no one else did, they would have no sin; but now they have seen and also hated both Me and My Father.But this happened that the word might be fulfilled which is written in their law, ‘They hated Me without a cause.’But when the Helper comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify of Me.And you also will bear witness, because you have been with Me from the beginning. These things I have spoken to you, that you should not be made to stumble.They will put you out of the synagogues; yes, the time is coming that whoever kills you will think that he offers God service.

Luke 16:19-31 (Gospel)

There was a certain rich man who was clothed in purple and fine linen and fared sumptuously every day.But there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, full of sores, who was laid at his gate,desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man’s table. Moreover the dogs came and licked his sores.

So it was that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels to Abraham’s bosom. The rich man also died and was buried.And being in torments in Hades, he lifted up his eyes and saw Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.Then he cried and said, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus that he may dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.’But Abraham said, ‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things; but now he is comforted and you are tormented.

’And besides all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed, so that those who want to pass from here to you cannot, nor can those from there pass to us.’

Then he said, ‘I beg you therefore, father, that you would send him to my father’s house,’for I have five brothers, that he may testify to them, lest they also come to this place of torment.’Abraham said to him, ‘They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.’ And he said, ‘No, father Abraham; but if one goes to them from the dead, they will repent.’But he said to him, ‘If they do not hear Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded though one rise from the dead.’

 

The Invisible Shame    Fr. Stephen Freeman

 

                  The young hobbit, Frodo, bears the terrible burden of carrying an evil ring to its destruction in Tolkien’s classic Lord of the Rings. As he travels deeper into the darkness of Mordor, he is described as becoming “thinner” and is somehow “less visible.” The Ring itself has the power to make its wearer invisible – but only to those in the world of light. It makes the wearer dangerously more visible to those who dwell in darkness. It is an invisibility with consequences.

                  Invisibility has held a long fascination for human beings. Its mysterious possibilities are explored in everything from heroic tales of antiquity to modern science fiction. But Tolkien is one of the few writers to make visibility to be a metaphor for goodness itself. In his world, goodness is synonymous with light – the primordial first light of creation. To become invisible is to be less apparent to the light – and therefore more apparent to darkness. There is no middle ground in Middle Earth.

                  It is a metaphor that holds great richness for Christian thought – for there, light is equally synonymous with goodness. But what about invisibility?

The ability to disappear may not seem to be an issue on a practical level – but it is a deep instinct within our human experience. In the story of Adam and Eve, disappearing is the first reaction to the experience of sin. It is an instinct for darkness as old as sin itself.

                  We can never become truly invisible, but the desire to hide is often the same thing. And the desire to hide is fundamentally the experience of shame – it is shame’s most profound expression. It is also a revelation of shame’s essentially dark character.

                  I find it interesting that shame is not a prominent word in modern Western culture. The march of Progress has frequently trumpeted itself as a force for the abolition of shame. Various mores and cultural norms have been overthrown in the name of removing various stigmas and forms of shame. A young college co-ed who pays her tuition by working as a porn star proudly discloses her work and claims that she finds it liberating.

                  But it is not to be believed. None of it. Shame and the drive for invisibility abound. “Progress” is largely about the cosmetic arrangements of culture – but the depths of the human soul remain unchanged.

                  Our search for invisibility takes many forms. Conformity yields a common hiding place. No age in popular culture is more shame-driven than adolescence. Children leave the security and safety of innocence and begin to step outside of themselves. They feel naked and vulnerable – unsure of their identities, they sense the stares of all around them. To belong, particularly through outward forms of fashion and behavior, is probably the dominant drive of adolescence. But our present technology has removed even the hiding place of privacy as our selfies and constant flow of information advertise the union of our shame. It is the mistake of Adam and Eve – shared shame is imagined to somehow be safer. 

                  Created and altered identities provide similar masks. Fashion, in its various forms, hides our nakedness (and thus our shame) in interesting ways. The fashions of the young often make no sense to the old (wearing your pants around your knees). And they indeed make no sense when taken as single, individual examples. It is their commonality that gives them their meaning. A Goth is known by his clothing, as is the Hipster and the myriad of other little sub-cultures that populate the world of youth. The wearer, I think, imagines that such fashion revealssomething of who they are to the world (“I am hip”). But they in fact do just the opposite. Identity is unique. Personhood is unrepeatable. I am not a Goth, or a Hipster, or a Gansta-from-the-Hood, nor a Preppie member of the club, etc. Intimate, true knowledge, can never be revealed through our efforts to belong. Only nakedness reveals to truth of our identity.

                  But the nakedness which is all too common these days is an un-nakedness. It is the human body revealed as the object of sexual desire. Immodest fashions never share the true self – they reduce the true self to near non-existence.

The nakedness that reveals the true self is something we most want to be invisible. It is the body of our shame. And this is the strange turn in the nature of our shame.

For shame is always about “who” or “what we are,” not about “what we have done.” And who we are, our true self, is generally hidden, even from our own awareness. It is the self I am afraid to know. Some fear this self because they think there may be nothing there. The various inventions that we create to serve as placeholders of the self are complete ephemera. They are like a mist that dissipates with the dawn.

But the true self remains, feared, unknown, and shrouded with shame. It is as though at the very core of our being there was a private Hades, holding the true soul imprisoned and out of communication. Rumors of its existence reach the outer world and its groans and tremors can sometimes be felt. But it is the darkness of the pit that surrounds it that holds us at bay.

                  It would seem strange that shame surrounds the true self. Surely, we imagine, the true self would be a shining reality that we would long to embrace. But this is not the case. The nakedness of the true self reveals its nothingness. It is but dust whose essence is the nothingness from which all creation was brought forth. When perceived in the Light, the fragility and ephemeral character of its existence is revealed. We behold it in shame, realizing that it shimmers for but a moment and is gone. “All flesh is as grass.”

                  It is into this Hades that the crucified Christ descends. The Orient from on High, He is the Daystar that rises in the heart. And to the true self He gives life and existence and holds it in eternal being.

                  Receiving that precious gift, however, requires that we ourselves embrace the reality of our fragile existence – despite our shame. For the gift is given to the truth of ourselves and not to any of the myriad imaginings we create as substitutes.

                  This is true humility and repentance. Our shame is not about what we have done, but about what and who we are. Our imaginary selves, clothed in pretense and woven out of illusion, are the stuff of sin. The “wages of sin is death” because sin has no substance. It is our own empty effort at self-creation. We are not and can never be self-existent.

                  The Elder Sophrony describes our awareness of this empty state within as “mindfulness of death” and names it as a great grace. For it is finally when we acknowledge the complete futility of everything in creation that we see the truth of our existence and the truth of God. The unbearableness of this naked emptiness is the fundamental shame that hides the truth of our being from us.

                  The imagery of Christ bearing our shame (Psalm 69:7) is significant. This is not at all the same thing as declaring Him to have “borne our guilt.” We do not have a legal problem (though if we had a legal problem He would bear that, too). It is not the things we have done or not done that ultimately separate us from God. It is our refusal to acknowledge the emptiness of our existence and to embrace the gift of true being from God. We seek to make ourselves invisible from the Light that would reveal the truth of ourselves.

                  But Christ has borne our shame. He not only dies on the Cross, but enters into the depths of Hades. The Hades into which He enters includes the mystical Hades of the human heart where the true self resides. And there He bears our shame. He fully unites Himself to our creatureliness – the Uncreated becomes Created. The Self-Existent unites Himself to the Contingent. God becomes Nothing.

And the shame of our nothingness is clothed in true being. When we meet Christ there – we enter into true prayer and the restoration of all things. We see the True Light and are clothed in incorruption and immortality. Our shame is swallowed up in the fullness of Life and we stand “without shame or fear” before the great Judgment Seat of Christ – which rests eternally on Golgotha.

 

ANNOUNCMENTS

 

Our Archdiocesan Assembly will be held on Saturday, November 1st, 2014 Father Daniel and one delegate will attend.

 

****Notice: Our Parish Annual Meeting will be held on Sunday November 9th following Divine Liturgy.

 

**Proposed By Law amendment: to Amend By-law Article VII, Section 2A from “The Council shall consist of a minimum of fifteen members and a maximum of eighteen members (with a quorum of 8).” to “The Council shall consist of a minimum of twelve members and a maximum of fifteen members (with a quorum of six).”

 

**All Parish Organization Presidents need to submit a written report to Fr. Daniel or Pres. Alan Natalie by November 2nd 2014.

 

Youth Service Retreat – Saturday Nov.22nd – Holy Assumption Downtown Pittsburgh 8am-5pm -age12 and up. Depart –7:00am  Return – 8:00pm We will be prepping for the Thanksgiving meal for the homeless and needy families delivered by the local police and FBI. Following the work we will be doing some sightseeing in Pittsburgh. See Sign up sheet in the Hall.

** Please visit our parish bookstore. We have many new titles and other items. New Orthodox Study Bibles have just arrived. If you would like something please contact Jane Cap.

 

** Thank God for all of you who served and gave your time to serve at our Harvest Fest. I was a great success!

 

Please pray for the infirmed, Homebound and those in need:

Matushka Helen Miller, Timothy Alberti, Richard and Mary-Ann Onest, Valentina Emelianow, John and Donna Novak, Raymond Corbin, John Biko, Mary-Louise Gall, Marilyn Filipos, Kathleen Farrah, Christine Harman, Ashlyn Hulse, Rick Hulse, Jeremiah Stump, Gordon Baldwin, John Kindle, Marge Ritsvey, Paul Krause, Patricia Martinez, John Wasko, Suzanne, Jess Davenport (Anyone else to add to the list call Fr. Daniel)

 

Sts. Peter and Paul Missions Team is sponsoring a Coat Drive for needy families in the area. See the entryway to the hall for more details or contact Anna Rachoki.

 

Anyone wishing to rake leaves or do any kind of upkeep on our property please come by anytime.

 

UPCOMING Fall EVENTS:

 

Sunday Church School continues TODAY! Students please get a blessing and depart to class after Divine Liturgy. Adult Sunday School will follow liturgy. #STSLIVINGTHEFAITH

 

- Catechumens classes will be held- Oct. 25th and Nov. 1st following Great Vespers.

 

-Ladies Bible Study (Book of James Ch. 3) Sat. Nov. 1st at 10am.

 

-Nov. 2nd for Coffee Hour the Ladies Altar Society will hold a going away dinner for John Sekel who is moving to Pittsburgh. Many Years John!

 

Young Moms Group will meet on Thursday Nov. 6th from 9:30-11:30am at the Parish house – see Mat. Gail for more details. (Child care volunteers are needed).

 

Saturday, November 8 - Pre-Advent Retreat (Laity/Clergy) - Intercession of the Holy Virgin, Carnegie.

 

Thursday, November 13 - Clergy seminar - St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral - “Canon Law / OCA Statute Revision Seminar” - Fr. Alexander Rentel(9 AM Liturgy for St. John Chrysostom begins the day).

 

Men’s Work Day Sat. Dec. 13th 9am-12noon

(Men’s Fellowship meeting. Gutter cleaning, Lexan windows, leaves and general winterizing.)

 

Please contribute to our Alms box – this is how we minister to the needy in our area.

SERVICES THIS WEEK:

Wed. Oct. 22nd – Daily Vespers- 5:30

Friday, Oct. 24th – Great Vespers 6:00pm (confession available)

Sat. Oct. 25th – Memorial Saturday Liturgy - 9AM  (Harvest Fest 11am)

                               - Great Vespers- 6:00pm (Confession available)

Sun. Oct. 26th- Divine Liturgy – 9:30am - Hours 9:15am

 

2 Corinthians 11:31-12:9 (Epistle)

The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who is blessed forever, knows that I am not lying. In Damascus the governor, under Aretas the king, was guarding the city of the Damascenes with a garrison, desiring to arrest me; but I was let down in a basket through a window in the wall, and escaped from his hands. It is doubtless not profitable for me to boast. I will come to visions and revelations of the Lord: I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago – whether in the body I do not know, or whether out of the body I do not know, God knows – such a one was caught up to the third heaven. And I know such a man – whether in the body or out of the body I do not know, God knows – how he was caught up into Paradise and heard inexpressible words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter. Of such a one I will boast; yet of myself I will not boast, except in my infirmities. For though I might desire to boast, I will not be a fool; for I will speak the truth. But I refrain, lest anyone should think of me above what he sees me to be or hears from me. And lest I should be exalted above measure by the abundance of the revelations, a thorn in the flesh was given to me, a messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I be exalted above measure. Concerning this thing I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might depart from me. And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

Luke 8:5-15 (Gospel)

A sower went out to sow his seed. And as he sowed, some fell by the wayside; and it was trampled down, and the birds of the air devoured it. Some fell on rock; and as soon as it sprang up, it withered away because it lacked moisture. And some fell among thorns, and the thorns sprang up with it and choked it. But others fell on good ground, sprang up, and yielded a crop a hundredfold. When He had said these things He cried, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear!” Then His disciples asked Him, saying, “What does this parable mean?” And He said, “To you it has been given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God, but to the rest it is given in parables, that ‘Seeing they may not see, And hearing they may not understand.’ Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God. Those by the wayside are the ones who hear; then the devil comes and takes away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved. But the ones on the rock are those who, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, who believe for a while and in time of temptation fall away. Now the ones that fell among thorns are those who, when they have heard, go out and are choked with cares, riches, and pleasures of life, and bring no fruit to maturity. But the ones that fell on the good ground are those who, having heard the word with a noble and good heart, keep it and bear fruit with patience.

Our Archdiocesan Assembly will be held on Saturday, November 1st, 2014 Father Daniel and one delegate will attend.

 

Youth Service Retreat – Saturday Nov.22nd – Holy Assumption Downtown Pittsburgh 8am-5pm -age12 and up. Depart –7:00am  Return – 8:00pm  We will be prepping for the Thanksgiving meal for the homeless and needy families delivered by the local police and FBI. Following the work we will be doing some sightseeing in Pittsburgh. See Sign up sheet in the Hall.

 

TODAY IS “College Student Sunday”- OCF

Every year, parishes across North America remember their college students a Sunday in the fall semester.  This year, the Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops of the United States of America has designated October 19 as College Student Sunday.  The Orthodox Christian Fellowship [OCF], the Assembly’s official campus ministry, has provided resources highlighting the importance of campus ministry in general and College Student Sunday in particular.

“Campus Ministry is a personal priority of His Beatitude, Metropolitan Tikhon,” stated Andrew Boyd, OCA Youth Director, “and the OCA has re-engaged with OCF in recent years to provide direct financial support, pastoral care expertise, governance, and program support.  I encourage everyone to follow His Beatitude’s example and find ways to support campus ministry in our Church.”

We are in the process of starting an OCF Chapter at Edinboro University. You may be seeing more college students around so please welcome them to our parish.

 

Other Misc.

**Proposed By Law amendment: to Amend By-law Article VII, Section 2A from “The Council shall consist of a minimum of fifteen members and a maximum of eighteen members (with a quorum of 8).” to “The Council shall consist of a minimum of twelve members and a maximum of fifteen members (with a quorum of six).”

 

**All Parish Organization Presidents need to submit a written report to Fr. Daniel or Pres. Alan Natalie by November 2nd 2014.

 

** Please visit our parish bookstore. We have many new titles and other items. New Orthodox Study Bibles have just arrived. If you would like something please contact Jane Cap.

 

**Anyone wishing to help prepare for our Harvest Fest this week, or to serve at the event  on Saturday we need:

On Saturday… 2 Waitresses to work with Theresa, 2 Kitchen Servers, 2 Dinner Ticket Sellers, 1 Bookstore Cashier, 1-2 young people to do crafts for kids, 1 Bake and Cookie sale person. Friday: Men will be needed to move tables and chairs.

 

Please pray for the infirmed, Homebound and those in need:

Matushka Helen Miller, Timothy Alberti, Richard and Mary-Ann Onest,

Valentina Emelianow, John and Donna Novak, Raymond Corbin, John Biko, Mary-Louise Gall, Marilyn Filipos, Kathleen Farrah, Christine Harman, Ashlyn Hulse, Rick Hulse, Jeremiah Stump, Gordon Baldwin, John Kindle, Marge Ritsvey, Paul Krause, Patricia Martinez, John Wasko, Suzanne, Jess Davenport (Anyone else to add to the list call Fr. Daniel)

 

UPCOMING Fall EVENTS:

 

Sunday Church School continues TODAY! Students please get a blessing and depart to class after Divine Liturgy. Adult Sunday School will follow liturgy. #STSLIVINGTHEFAITH

 

- Catechumens classes will be held- Oct. 25th and Nov. 1st following Great Vespers.

 

Harvest Festival – This Saturday, October 25th 11-3pm

(50/50 Tickets are available please see Karen or Kathleen today)

(Pierogie orders are being taken till their gone!)

** If you are interested in serving for our Harvest Fest please contact Karen Raydo-Donch

 

Saturday, November 8 - Pre-Advent Retreat (Laity/Clergy) - Intercession of the Holy Virgin, Carnegie

 

****Notice: Our Parish Annual Meeting will be held on Sunday November 9th following Divine Liturgy.

 

Thursday, November 13 - Clergy seminar - St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral - “Canon Law / OCA Statute Revision Seminar” - Fr. Alexander Rentel(9 AM Liturgy for St. John Chrysostom begins the day).

 

Men’s Work Day Sat. Dec. 13th 9am-12noon

(Men’s Fellowship meeting. Gutter cleaning, Lexan windows, leaves and general winterizing.)

 

Tomorrow October 20th is the Anniversary of the Orthodox Church in America (1970) being granted it’s Autocephaly

 

How do we grow as a parish?

From St. Tikhon

 

Putting Saint Tikhon’s words and vision into action

Posted on October 16, 2014 in Reflections 0

by Father Daniel Hubiak

 

            In 1907, the First All-American Sobor was convened at Saint John the Baptist Church, Mayfield, PA in conjunction with the Russian Orthodox Mutual Aid Society’s Convention. Because of this dual gathering, the Sobor was limited to one morning and three evening sessions primarily dedicated to establishing legal and financial structures. Therefore, the theme of the gathering found expression not in the working sessions, but in Archbishop Tikhon’s talks at the sessions and at the farewell meal with the clergy. *

As the gathering was ending, the Archbishop said, “We are strong… only in one thing – in possessing the True Orthodox Faith… the gift of God… Strengthen your brethren in the Faith and the love of Orthodoxy.”

            In his last sermon before departing for Russia, Archbishop Tikhon stated, “Guarding the Orthodox Faith sacredly and loving it is not enough. Christ the Savior said that lighting the candle, one does not put it ‘under a bushel, but on a candlestick’ (Matthew 5:15), and the light of Orthodoxy is lighted not for a small circle of people. No, the Orthodox Church is catholic; she remembers the will of her Founder: ‘Go ye into all the world and preach the Gospel to every creature, teach all nations.’ (Matthew 28:19; Mark 16:15). We ought to share our spiritual wealth, truth, and light with others…. Thus, each of us should consider this task of propagating the faith as his own task, dear to his heart.”

The Archbishop indicated that, in order to expand the mission, a three-pronged approach was needed.

  1. Thank God daily for the gift of Orthodoxy.
  2. Strengthen each other in the Faith and in the love of Orthodoxy.
  3. Propagate the Faith by living it.

In his talks, Archbishop Tikhon encouraged the convening of more gatherings to share and offer initiatives. He said, “From the beginning, I gave my colleagues wide room for initiative. As long as the work got done, it was not important to me whether it began with me or others. And the consequences of this were not slow in being told: parishes began to multiply, new churches were built, the number of parishioners grew, new institutions were established.”

The Archbishop understood that time brings change. “I think that those things in which I was useful here for a while – for which I was perhaps even sent here – have now passed and are no longer needed, that you need something different, a different worker with a different approach and character.”

Things are different today. We have instant contact and the means for instant information sharing. We must be careful not to use these means for conflict and tearing down unity. Instead, we should be working to Expand the Mission by augmenting the modern techniques for information sharing with the three points proposed by the Archbishop: Thanking God daily, strengthening each other in faith and love, and Living our faith.

In addition to instant information sharing, personal contact is of vital importance. We strengthen each other in the Faith and in the love of Orthodox Christianity by personal contact and by seeing each other as images of Christ. The kiss of peace cannot be accomplished via the internet. It is accomplished person to person, and by greeting one’s fellow parishioner or parish visitor.

The need to Expand the Mission of the Orthodox Church in America continues to be the sacred task and duty of each of us. By all means, let us use modern techniques of sharing and disseminating information and promoting programs, but let us really SEE each other, STRENGTHEN each other, LOVE each other and TALK to each other, that those around us might say, “Look how they love one another” (Apology of Tertullian).

* Saint Tikhon, Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia, Enlightener of North America. For quotes, see Orthodox America 1794-1976, pp. 97-101, andwww.antiochian.org/Bishops/tikhon.htm.

 

From Todays Lord I call verses: (For holy prophet Joel)

The Spirit of God has been poured out on us, O faithful,

as the honored Joel prophesied, moved by the same Spirit.

In prophetic words he opens the revelation of divine mysteries.We who have received his works are enlightened with divine radianceand with the grace of God.

 

(For St. Varus:)

Behold the sufferings of the truly victorious martyrs!

Filled with the boldness of God, thou didst enter the arena, O Varus.

Thou didst preach Christ, Who became a man for our sake.

Thou wast not afraid of death or the torments that lay before thee.

Therefore as thou wast wounded and mercilessly dismembered,

thou didst rejoice with perfect understanding, O wise one,

looking to the glory that abides for those who love God.

 

Teaching on the Mother of God:

The shadow of the Law passed when grace came;

as the Bush burned, yet was not consumed,

so the Virgin gave birth, yet remained a Virgin.

Instead of a pillar of flame, the Righteous Sun has risen.

Instead of Moses, Christ, the Salvation of our souls.

 

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

Rev. Daniel Mathewson –

ActingRector – October 6th, 2014         

Parish phone: 814-734-3801                      

25636 N. Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412        

 

www.orthodxcrossingville.org

17th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 8. Martyr Charitina of Amisus (304). Ss. Peter, Aleksy, Jonah, Philip, and Germogén, Metropolitans of Moscow and All Russia. Ven. Damian the Healer (1097), Jeremiah (ca. 1070), and Matthew (ca. 1085), Clairvoyants, of the Kiev Caves (Near Caves). St. Charitina, Princess of Lithuania (1281). Hieromartyr Dionysius, Bishop of Alexandria (264-264). Martyr Memelta of Persia (ca. 344). St. Gregory of Chandzoe in Georgia (861). Ven. Eudocimus of Vatopedi (Mt. Athos).


A BLESSED WELCOME to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection.This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior.  Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach our priest Fr. Daniel after the service or at coffee hour in the parish hall.

* Please follow along in the Divine Liturgy Book in the Pew beginning on page 29. We are glad you are here, we do not practice “open” communion, which means you must be a baptized Orthodox Christian who is under a spiritual father confessor, making confession regularly in order to partake of the Holy Mysteries of Christ.

 

SERVICES THIS WEEK:

 

Wed. Oct. 8th – Daily Vespers- 5:30  (PC Mtg. to follow)

Sat. Oct. 11th – Molieben  of Thanksgiving – 9:30am (Men’s Work Day to follow)

                          - Great Vespers – 6:00pm (Confession available)

Sun. Oct. 12th - Divine Liturgy – 9:30am - Hours 9:15am

TODAYS SCRIPTURE READING...

2 Corinthians 6:16-7:1 (Epistle)

And what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For you are the temple of the living God. As God has said: “I will dwell in them And walk among them. I will be their God, And they shall be My people.”

Therefore Come out from among them And be separate, says the Lord. Do not touch what is unclean, And I will receive you.”I will be a Father to you, And you shall be My sons and daughters, Says the LORD Almighty.”  Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.

 

Luke 6:31-36 (Gospel)

And just as you want men to do to you, you also do to them likewise.

But if you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them.And if you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners do the same.And if you lend to those from whom you hope to receive back, what credit is that to you? For even sinners lend to sinners to receive as much back.But love your enemies, do good, and lend, hoping for nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High. For He is kind to the unthankful and evil.

Therefore be merciful, just as your Father also is merciful.


 

Please pray for the infirmed, Homebound and those in need:

Matushka Helen, Timothy Alberti, Richard and Mary-Ann Onest,

Valentina Emelianow, John and Donna Novak, Raymond Corbin,           Tania Reynolds, Liam, Mary-Louise Gall, Marilyn Filipos, Kathleen  Farrah, Christine Harman, Ashlyn Hulse, Rick Hulse, Jeremiah Stump, Gordan Baldwin, John Kindle, Marge Ritsvey, Paul Krause, Patricia Martinez, John Wasko, Suzanne (Anyone else to add to the list call Fr. Daniel)

 

Holy Days to mark your calendar: (# days are 12 major feasts)

Memorial Saturday Divine Liturgy- Oct. 25th (Harvestfest to follow)

Synaxsis of the Archangel Michael- Divine Liturgy Nov. 8th

(3) Entrance of the Theotokos into the Temple – Divine Liturgy- Nov.21st

Akathist Service Glory to God For All Things- Nov. 26th

St Nicholas Day- Divine Liturgy- Dec. 6th

(all Divine Liturgies will have vespers the evening before at 6pm)

Dec 24th

-Royal Hours of Nativity-9:00am

-St. Basil’s Vesperal Liturgy- 1:00pm

- Grand Compline- 7:00pm

(4) Dec. 25th

- Nativity of Our Lord and Savior – Divine Liturgy – 9:30am

(5) Jan. 1st – Circumcision / St Basil’s Day – Divine Liturgy – 9:30am

Jan 5th

- Royal Hours – 9:00am

- Grand Compline – 6:00pm

(6) Jan.6th

-Theophany of Our Lord Jesus Christ- 9:30am

 

 

UPCOMING Fall EVENTS:

Sunday Church School continues TODAY! Students please get a blessing and depart to class after Divine Liturgy. Adult Sunday School will follow liturgy. #STSLIVINGTHEFAITH

 

-Men’s Fellowship Workday- October 11th 9-12p (Moliben 9:00am)

 

Catechumens classes- October 12th and 25th following Great Vespers.

 

-Missions Meeting Sunday, October 12th at coffee Hour

 

Youth Group Outing - Corn Maze- Saturday, Oct 18th after Great Vespers-12 and up

 

Harvest Festival – Saturday, October 25th 11-3pm

(50/50 Tickets are available please see Karen or Kathleen today)

(Pierogie orders are being taken till their gone!)

 

Youth Service Retreat – Saturday Nov.22nd – Holy Assumption Downtown Pittsburgh 8am-5pm -age12 and up. Depart –7:00am  Return – 8:00pm  We will be prepping for the Thanksgiving meal for the homeless and needy families delivered by the local police and FBI. Following the work we will be doing some sightseeing in Pittsburgh.

 

Other Misc.

**Parish Calendars will be ordered this week- please sign up in the narthex so we can know how many to order.

 

**When you arrive at church it is good to light a candle for your loved ones

 

**The Parish is in need of a lightweight powerful vacuum to stay in the parish.

 

** Please visit out parish bookstore. We have many new titles and other items. New Orthodox Study Bibles have just arrived. If you would like something please contact Jane Cap.

 

** If you are interested in serving for our Harvest Fest please contact Karen Raydo-Donch

 

** In the coming days Fr. Daniel will be contacting you to meet and discuss your spiritual needs and to ask you to fill out a survey about Saints Peter and Paul concerning our direction and plans as we move forward.

 

** The New Podium in the hall is donated in memory of Nikolai Emelianow.

 

** Please give a “welcome” to our new family Allan and Kathleen Irwin.

 

St John Chrysostom’s Prayer for each Hour of the Day:

1. O Lord, deprive me not of Thy heavenly blessings;

2. O Lord, deliver me from eternal torment;

3. O Lord, if I have sinned in my mind or thought, in word deed, forgive me.

4. O Lord, deliver me from every ignorance and heedlessness, from pettiness of the soul and stony hardness of heart;

5. O Lord, deliver me from every temptation;

6. O Lord, enlighten my heart darkened by evil desires;

7. O Lord, I, being a human being, have sinned; do Thou, being God, forgive me in Thy lovingkindness, for Thou knowest the weakness of my soul.

8. O Lord, send down Thy grace to help me, that I may glorify Thy holy Name;

9. O Lord Jesus Christ, inscribe me, Thy servant, in the Book of Life, and grant me a blessed end;

10. O Lord my God, even if I have done nothing good in Thy sight, yet grant me, according to Thy grace, that I may make a start in doing good.

11. O Lord, sprinkle on my heart the dew of Thy grace;

12. O Lord of heaven and earth, remember me, Thy sinful servant, cold of heart and impure, in Thy Kingdom.

13. O Lord, receive me in repentance;

14. O Lord, leave me not;

15. O Lord, save me from temptation;

16. O Lord, grant me pure thoughts;

17. O Lord, grant me tears of repentance, remembrance of death, and the sense of peace;

18. O Lord, grant me mindfulness to confess my sins;

19. O Lord, grant me humility, charity, and obedience;

20. O Lord, grant me tolerance, magnanimity, and gentleness;

21. O Lord, implant in me the root of all blessings: the fear of Thee in my heart;

22. O Lord, vouchsafe that I may love Thee with all my heart and soul, and that I may obey in all things Thy will;

23. O Lord, shield me from evil persons and devils and passions and all other lawless matters;

24. O Lord, Who knowest Thy creation and that which Thou hast willed for it; may Thy will also be fulfilled in me, a sinner, for Thou art blessed forevermore. Amen.

 

THE FIVE LANGUAGES OF LOVE:

Words of Affirmation—Actions don’t always speak louder than

words. If this is your love language, unsolicited compliments mean the

world to you. Hearing the words, “I love you,” are important—hearing

the reasons behind that love sends your spirits skyward. Insults can

leave you shattered and are not easily forgotten.

 

Quality Time—In the vernacular of Quality Time, nothing says

“I love you” like full, undivided attention. Being there for this type

of person is critical, but really being there—with the TV off, fork

and knife down, and all chores and tasks on standby—makes your

significant other feel truly special and loved. Distractions, postponed

dates, or the failure to listen can be especially hurtful.

 

Receiving Gifts—Don’t mistake this love language for materialism;

the receiver of gifts thrives on the love, thoughtfulness, and effort

behind the gift. If you speak this language, the perfect gift or gesture

shows that you are known, you are cared for, and you are prized above whatever was sacrificed to bring the gift to you. A missed birthday, anniversary, or a hasty, thoughtless gift would be disastrous—so would the absence of everyday gestures.

 

Acts of Service—Can vacuuming the floors really be an expression

of love? Absolutely! Anything you do to ease the burden of

responsibilities weighing on an Acts of Service person will speak

volumes. The words he or she most wants to hear are, “Let me do that

for you.” Laziness, broken commitments, and making more work for

them, tell those with this language their feelings don’t matter.

 

Physical Touch—This language isn’t all about the bedroom. A

person whose primary language is Physical Touch is, not surprisingly,

very touchy. Hugs, pats on the back, holding hands, and thoughtful

touches on the arm, shoulder, or face—they can all be ways to show

excitement, concern, care, and love. Physical presence and accessibility are crucial, while neglect or abuse can be unforgivable and destructive.

A Prayer to increase Love

O Christ, You bound Your apostles in a union of love, and have bound us, Your faithful servants, to Yourself with that same bond. Grant that we may fulfill Your commandments and love one another, through the the prayers of the Theotokos, for you are the Lover of mankind.

Set our hearts on fire with love for You, O Christ our God, that in its flame we may love You with all our heart, with all our mind, with all our strength, and to love our neighbor as ourselves, so that keeping Your commandments, we may glorify You, the Giver of all good gifts.

 

 

The Fathers on Love...

 

“0 Holy Love, - i.e., the Holy Spirit of God - he who knows you not has never tasted the sweetness of your mercies which only living experience can give us. But he who has known you, or who has been known by you, can never have even the smallest doubt. For you are the fulfillment of the law, you who fills, burns, inflames, embraces my heart with a measureless love. You are the teacher of the prophets, the offspring of the apostles, the strength of the martyrs, the inspiration of the fathers and masters, the perfecting of all the saints. Only you, O Love, prepare even me for the true service of God. (Saint Simeon the New Theologian, 11th c, Homily 53)

 

“A Christian must be courteous to all. His words and deeds should breath with the grace of the Holy Spirit, which abides in his soul, so that in this way he might glorify the name of God. He who regulates all of his speech also regulates all of his actions. He who keeps watch over the words he is about say also keeps watch over the deeds he intends to do, and he never goes out of the bounds good and benevolent conduct. The graceful speech of a Christian is characterized by delicateness and politeness. This fact, born of love, produces peace and joy. On the other hand, boorishness gives birth to hatred, enmity, affliction, competitiveness, disorder and wars.”
(St. Nektarius of Aegina, The Path to Happiness, 7)

 

“With all your power, ask the Lord for humility and brotherly love, because God freely gives His grace for love towards one's brother. Do an experiment on yourself: one day ask God for love towards your brother, and another day - live without love. You will see the difference.” 
(St. Silouan the Athonite, Writings, XVI.8)

 

“God gave people the word "love" so that they could call their relationship to Him by this name. When people misuse this word to refer to their relationship with earthly things, it loses its meaning.”
(St. Nicholas of Serbia, Thoughts on Good and Evil)

 

Do not say that faith in Christ alone can save you, for this is not possible if you do not attain love for Him, which is demonstrated by deeds. As for mere faith: "The demons also believe and tremble" (James, 2:19). The action of love consists in heartfelt good deeds toward one's neighbor, magnanimity, patience, and sober use of things. 
(St. Maximus the Confessor, Chapters on Love, 1.39-40)

 

"Love covers a multitude of sins," (I Pet. 4:8). That is, for love towards one's neighbor, God forgives the sins of the one who loves. 
(St. Theophan the Recluse, Letters, VI.949)

 

 

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 Rev. Daniel Mathewson - ActingRector – Sept. 28th , 2014         

Parish phone: 814-734-3801                      

25636 N. Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

                          

www.orthodoxcrossingville.org

 

16th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 7. Ven. Chariton the Confessor, Abbot of Palestine (ca. 350). Synaxis of the Saints of the Kiev Caves (Near Caves). Ven. Kharitón of Syanzhémsk (Vologdá—1509). Ven. Herodion, Abbot, of Iloezérsk (1541). Prophet Baruch (6th c. B.C.). Martyrs Alexander, Alphius, Zosimas, Mark, Nicon, Neon, Heliodorus, and 24 others in Pisidia and Phrygia (4th c.). Martyrdom of St. Wenceslaus (Viachesláv), Prince of the Czechs (935). Schema-monk Kirill and Schema-nun Maria (parents of Ven. Sergius of Rádonezh).


A BLESSED WELCOME to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection.
This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior. Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach our priest Fr. Daniel after the service or at coffee hour in the parish hall.

* Please follow along in the Divine Liturgy Book in the Pew beginning on page 29. We are glad you are here, we do not practice “open” communion, which means you must be a baptized Orthodox Christian who is under a spiritual father confessor, making confession regularly in order to partake of the Holy Mysteries of Christ.

 

Services this week:

 

Tue. Sept. 30th Festal Vespers – Protection of the Holy Theotokos 6pm

Wed. Oct.1st Divine Liturgy- Protection

Sat. Oct. 4th – Great Vespers 6pm

 

2 Corinthians 6:1-10 (Epistle)

We then, as workers together with Him also plead with you not to receive the grace of God in vain. For He says: In an acceptable time I have heard you, And in the day of salvation I have helped you.” Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation. We give no offense in anything, that our ministry may not be blamed. But in all things we commend ourselves as ministers of God: in much patience, in tribulations, in needs, in distresses, in stripes, in imprisonments, in tumults, in labors, in sleeplessness, in fastings; by purity, by knowledge, by longsuffering, by kindness, by the Holy Spirit, by sincere love, by the word of truth, by the power of God, by the armor of righteousness on the right hand and on the left, by honor and dishonor, by evil report and good report; as deceivers, and yet true; as unknown, and yet well known; as dying, and behold we live; as chastened, and yet not killed; as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.

 

Luke 5:1-11 (Gospel)

So it was, as the multitude pressed about Him to hear the word of God, that He stood by the Lake of Gennesaret,and saw two boats standing by the lake; but the fishermen had gone from them and were washing their nets.Then He got into one of the boats, which was Simon’s, and asked him to put out a little from the land. And He sat down and taught the multitudes from the boat.When He had stopped speaking, He said to Simon, “Launch out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch.”But Simon answered and said to Him, “Master, we have toiled all night and caught nothing; nevertheless at Your word I will let down the net.”And when they had done this, they caught a great number of fish, and their net was breaking.

So they signaled to their partners in the other boat to come and help them. And they came and filled both the boats, so that they began to sink.When Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, “Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord!”For he and all who were with him were astonished at the catch of fish which they had taken;and so also were James and John, the sons of Zebedee, who were partners with Simon. And Jesus said to Simon, “Do not be afraid. From now on you will catch men.”So when they had brought their boats to land, they forsook all and followed Him.


1 Corinthians 13 The Gift of Love ] If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing. ...

Isaiah 54:8 In overflowing wrath for a moment I hid my face from you, but with everlasting love I will have compassion on you, says the Lord, your Redeemer.

Deuteronomy 6:5 and you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your might.

Deuteronomy 10:12 The Essence of the Law ] “And now, Israel, what does the Lord your God require of you, but to fear the Lord your God, to walk in all his ways, to love him, to serve the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul,

Deuteronomy 30:19-20 I call heaven and earth to witness against you this day, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and curse; therefore choose life, that you and your descendants may live, loving the Lord your God, obeying his voice, and cleaving to him; for that means life to you and length of days, that you may dwell in the land which the Lord swore to your fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give them.”

Leviticus 19:18 You shall not take vengeance or bear any grudge against the sons of your own people, but you shall love your neighbor as yourself: I am the Lord.

Ruth 4:15 He shall be to you a restorer of life and a nourisher of your old age; for your daughter-in-law who loves you, who is more to you than seven sons, has borne him.”

1 Samuel 18:1 Jonathan’s Covenant with David ] When he had finished speaking to Saul, the soul of Jonathan was knit to the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul.

Psalm 5:7 But I through the abundance of thy steadfast love will enter thy house, I will worship toward thy holy temple in the fear of thee.

Psalm 33:18 Behold, the eye of the Lord is on those who fear him, on those who hope in his steadfast love,

Song of Solomon 2:4 He brought me to the banqueting house, and his banner over me was love.

1 John 3:18 Little children, let us not love in word or speech but in deed and in truth.

2 John 1:1 Salutation ] The elder to the elect lady and her children, whom I love in the truth, and not only I but also all who know the truth,

John 13:34 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; even as I have loved you, that you also love one another.

 

4 Words for Love:

 

Agape

 

 

Philia

 

 

Storge

 

 

Eros

 

 Next week the Languages of Love…

 

UPCOMING Fall EVENTS:

Sunday Church School continues TODAY! Students please get a blessing and depart to class after Divine Liturgy. Adult Sunday School will follow liturgy.

TODAY…“Lord, we give thanks for all Your mercies seen and unseen." a "Thank you for all the support this parish has given to Terri Jouver during her challenge with cancer and now that her health has been restored, Terry will sponsor a parish meal of thanksgiving for healing today for Coffee Hour. A free will donation will be taken and donated to the mission fund. Please come… we can all say Thank You together!

- Men’s Workday and Study- October 11th 9-12noon

 

-Missions Meeting October 12th at coffee Hour

 

Youth Outing - Corn Maze…Oct 18th after Great Vespers.

 

Harvest Festival - Saturday October 25th 11-3pm

(50/50 Tickets are available please see Karen or Kathleen today)

 

Youth Service Retreat - Nov.22nd – Holy Assumption Downtown Pittsburgh 8am-5pm -age12 and up. Depart – 7am  Return – 8p

 Please pray for:

Raymond             Tania

Mary-Louise       Marilyn

Kathleen              Christine

Ashlyn                   Jeremiah

Gordan                  John

Marge

Patricia

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

Saints Peter and Paul

Orthodox Church

 

Rev. Daniel Mathewson - ActingRector – Sept. 21st, 2014        

Parish phone: 814-734-3801                      

25636 N. Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

                          

www.orthodoxcrossingville.org

 

15th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 6. Leavetaking of the Elevation of the Cross. Sunday after Elevation. Apostle Quadratus of the Seventy (ca. 130). Uncovering of the Relics of St. Dimitry, Metropolitan of Rostov (1752). Ven. Daniel, Abbot of Shuzhgórsk (Novgorod—16th c.). Ven. Joseph of Zaonikiev Monastery (Vologdá—1612). Hieromartyr Hypatius, Bishop of Ephesus, and his Presbyter, Andrew (ca. 730-735). St. Isaac (Isacius) and Meletius, Bishops of Cyprus. Martyr Eusebius of Phœnicia. Martyr Priscus of Phrygia. Twenty-six Monk Martyrs of Zographou (Mt. Athos—1285). Ven. Cosmas the Bulgarian of Zographou (Mt. Athos—1323). Ss. John and George, Confessors (Georgia, 20th c.—Sept. 8th O.S.).

 

 
A BLESSED WELCOME to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection.This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior. Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach our priest Fr. Daniel after the service or at coffee hour in the parish hall.

* Please follow along in the Divine Liturgy Book in the Pew beginning on page 29. We are glad you are here, we do not practice “open” communion, which means you must be a baptized Orthodox Christian who is under a spiritual father confessor, making confession regularly in order to partake of the Holy Mysteries of Christ.

 

Services this week:

Wed. Sept. 24th – Akathist to the Holy New Martyrs -6p

Sat. Sept. 27th - Great  Vespers – 6:00pm 

Sun. Sept. 28th – Divine Liturgy - 9:30am

 

2 Corinthians 4:6-15 (Epistle)

For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us. We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed –always carrying about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body. For we who live are always delivered to death for Jesus’ sake, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh. So then death is working in us, but life in you. And since we have the same spirit of faith, according to what is written, “I believed and therefore I spoke,” we also believe and therefore speak, knowing that He who raised up the Lord Jesus will also raise us up with Jesus, and will present us with you. For all things are for your sakes, that grace, having spread through the many, may cause thanksgiving to abound to the glory of God.


Matthew 22:35-46 (Gospel)

Then one of them, a lawyer, asked Him a question, testing Him, and saying, Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?

Jesus said to him, “’You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets. While the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them, saying, “What do you think about the Christ? Whose Son is He?” They said to Him, “The Son of David.” He said to them, “How then does David in the Spirit call Him ‘Lord,’ saying: The LORD said to my Lord, Sit at My right hand, Till I make Your enemies Your footstool”’?   If David then calls Him ‘Lord,’ how is He his Son? And no one was able to answer Him a word, nor from that day on did anyone dare question Him anymore.

A Hiatus for Grief

I have been working on an article this week but with little satisfaction. On Tuesday afternoon, my newborn granddaughter, Anna Kathryn Freeman, fell asleep in the Lord after a four-day struggle in the hospital here in Knoxville. It has been a very difficult week. Our family is gathering for the funeral and to support one another. I would greatly appreciate your prayers for us all and for the repose of the holy innocent, Anna Kathryn. May her memory be eternal – her soul shall dwell with the blessed.

I will return to writing when things settle down. --Fr. Stephen Freeman

 

UPCOMING Fall EVENTS:

Sunday Church School begins TODAY! Students please get a blessing and depart to class after Divine Liturgy.

“Lord, we give thanks for all Your mercies seen and unseen."
Next Sunday as a "Thank you for all the support this parish has given to Terri Jouver during her challenge with cancer and now that her health has been restored, Terry will sponsor a parish meal of thanksgiving for healing next week Sept. 28th for Coffee Hour. 
The meal will be beef stroganoff, Tabouli salad, bread and drinks.
Anyone wishing to bring a dessert may do so. A free will donation will be taken and donated to the mission fund. Please come, we can all say Thank You together!

- Men’s Workday and Study- October 11th 9-12noon

 

Archdiocesan Youth Bond Fire October 12th at the Archdiocesan Center in Cranberry Township 4pm

 

Youth Service Retreat - Nov.22nd – Holy Assumption Downtown Pittsburgh 8am-5pm -age 12 and up.

Depart – 7am  Return – 8pm

 

Harvest Festival - Saturday October 25th 11-3pm

(50/50 Tickets are available please see Karen or Kathleen)

 

* The Parish is in need of a shop vac or the like and a working Iron if anyone would like to donate these items. Our weedeater also  needs repaired.

Those wishing to assist International Orthodox Christian Charities in its ongoing humanitarian efforts across the Middle East may do so by logging onto www.iocc.org.

 

Please if you are planning an event for the parish please verify with Fr. Daniel to make sure the parish schedule is open.

 

 

Saints Peter and Paul

Orthodox Church

 

Rev. Daniel Mathewson - ActingRector – Sept. 14th, 2014         

Parish phone: 814-734-3801                      

25636 N. Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

                          

www.orthodoxcrossingville.org

 

14th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 5. THE UNIVERSAL EXALTATION OF THE PRECIOUS AND LIFEGIVING CROSS. Repose of St. John Chrysostom (407). Monk Martyr Macarius of Dionysiou (Mt. Athos—1507). Monk Martyr Joseph of Dionysiou (Mt. Athos—1819).

 

A BLESSED WELCOME to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection.This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior. Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach our priest Fr. Daniel after the service or at coffee hour in the parish hall.

* Please follow along in the Divine Liturgy Book in the Pew beginning on page 29. We are glad you are here, we do not practice “open” communion, which means you must be a baptized Orthodox Christian who is under a spiritual father confessor, making confession regularly in order to partake of the Holy Mysteries of Christ.

 

Services this week:

 

Wed. Sept. 17th – Daily Vespers - 6PM

Sat. Sept. 20th - Great  Vespers – 6PM  (SS Bonfire)

Sun. Sept. 21st – Divine Liturgy - 9:30am

Wed. Sept. 24th – Akathist to Holy New Martyrs of Alaska 6pm

 

1 Corinthians 1:18-24 (Epistle)

For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. For it is written: Where is the wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the disputer of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of this world?  For since, in the wisdom of God, the world through wisdom did not know God, it pleased God through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe. For Jews request a sign, and Greeks seek after wisdom; but we preach Christ crucified, to the Jews a stumbling block and to the Greeks foolishness, but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.

John 19:6-11, 13-20, 25-28, 30-35 (Gospel)

Therefore, when the chief priests and officers saw Him, they cried out, saying, “Crucify Him, crucify Him!” Pilate said to them, “You take Him and crucify Him, for I find no fault in Him.” The Jews answered him, “We have a law, and according to our law He ought to die, because He made Himself the Son of God.” Therefore, when Pilate heard that saying, he was the more afraid, and went again into the Praetorium, and said to Jesus, “Where are You from?” But Jesus gave him no answer.

Then Pilate said to Him, “Are You not speaking to me? Do You not know that I have power to crucify You, and power to release You?”Jesus answered, “You could have no power at all against Me unless it had been given you from above. Therefore the one who delivered Me to you has the greater sin.”When Pilate therefore heard that saying, he brought Jesus out and sat down in the judgment seat in a place that is called The Pavement, but in Hebrew, Gabbatha.Now it was the Preparation Day of the Passover, and about the sixth hour. And he said to the Jews, “Behold your King!”But they cried out, “Away with Him, away with Him! Crucify Him!” Pilate said to them, “Shall I crucify your King?” The chief priests answered, “We have no king but Caesar!”Then he delivered Him to them to be crucified. So they took Jesus and led Him away.And He, bearing His cross, went out to a place called the Place of a Skull, which is called in Hebrew, Golgotha,where they crucified Him, and two others with Him, one on either side, and Jesus in the center.Now Pilate wrote a title and put it on the cross. And the writing was: JESUS OF NAZARETH, THE KING OF THE JEWS.Then many of the Jews read this title, for the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city; and it was written in Hebrew, Greek, and Latin.Now there stood by the cross of Jesus His mother, and His mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene.When Jesus therefore saw His mother, and the disciple whom He loved standing by, He said to His mother, “Woman, behold your son!”Then He said to the disciple, “Behold your mother!” And from that hour that disciple took her to his own home.After this, Jesus, knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the Scripture might be fulfilled, said, “I thirst!”So when Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, “It is finished!” And bowing His head, He gave up His spirit.Therefore, because it was the Preparation Day, that the bodies should not remain on the cross on the Sabbath (for that Sabbath was a high day), the Jews asked Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away.Then the soldiers came and broke the legs of the first and of the other who was crucified with Him. But when they came to Jesus and saw that He was already dead, they did not break His legs.But one of the soldiers pierced His side with a spear, and immediately blood and water came out.And he who has seen has testified, and his testimony is true; and he knows that he is telling the truth, so that you may believe.

UPCOMING Summer EVENTS:

 

~This Saturday…Sunday Church School Bonfire- Saturday Sept. 21st

Great Vespers at 6pm Bonfire to follow for Children and Parents. Sunday Church School Begins on Sept. 22nd.

Adult class will follow Liturgy each Sunday for 15-20mins.

 

- Men’s Workday and Study- October 11th 9-12noon

 

Archdiocesan Youth Bond Fire October 12th at the Archdiocesan Center in Cranberry Township 4pm

 

Youth Service Retreat - Nov.22nd – Holy Assumption Downtown Pittsburgh 8am-5pm -age 12 and up.

Depart – 7am  Return – 8pm

Harvest Festival - Saturday October 25th 11-3pm

 

Those wishing to assist International Orthodox Christian Charities in its ongoing humanitarian efforts across the Middle East may do so by logging onto www.iocc.org.

 

Ten ways to deny yourself:

  1. Not being hurt or insulted when forgotten
  2. Not being angry when mistreated.
  3. Not becoming defensive when someone disregards our advice/opinion.
  4. Lovingly and patiently bearing any disorder.
  5. Confront insensitivity in others with love and without judgmentalism.
  6. Being content with food, income, clothing, climate, service and disruptions.
  7. Not always referring to ourselves in conversation.
  8. Loving to be unknown and unrecognized.
  9. Rejoicing in others’ prosperity when your needs in that area are more desperate than theirs.
  10.  Approaching life with a general focus on the well-being of others.

 

Please if you are planning an event for the parish please verify with Fr. Daniel to make sure the parish schedule is open.

 

The Cross, The Preserver of the Universe

By St. John Maximovitch

In the prophet Ezekiel (9:6) it is said that when the Angel of the Lord was sent to punish and destroy the sinning people, it was told him not to strike those on whom the “mark” had been made. In the original text this mark is called “tau,” the Hebrew letter corresponding to the letter “T,” which is how in ancient times the cross was made, which then was an instrument of punishment.

                  And so, even then was foretold the power of the Cross, which preserves those who venerate it. Likewise by many other events in the Old Testament the power of the Cross was indicated. Moses, who held his arms raised in the form of a cross during the battle, gave victory to the Israelites over the Amalekites. He also, dividing the Red Sea by a blow of his rod and by a transverse blow uniting the waters again, saved Israel from Pharaoh, who drowned in the water, while Israel crossed over on the dry bottom (Exodus, Chs. 14, 17).

Through the laying on of his hands in the form of a cross on his grandsons, Jacob gave a blessing to his descendants, foretelling at the same time their future until the coming of the “expectation of the nations” (Genesis, Ch. 48).

By the Cross, the Son of God having become man, accomplished our salvation. He humbled Himself and became obedient unto death, even the death of the Cross (Phil. 2:8). Having stretched out His hands upon the Cross, the Saviour with them, as it were, embraced the world, and by His blood shed on it, like a king with red ink, He signed the forgiveness of the human race.

                  The Cross of the Lord was the instrument by which He saved the world after the fall into sin. Through the Cross, He descended with His soul into hell so as to raise up from it the souls who were awaiting Him. By the Cross, Christ opened the doors of paradise which had been closed after our first ancestors had been banished from it. The Cross was sanctified by the Body of Christ which was nailed to it when He gave Himself over to torments and death for the salvation of the world, and it itself was then filled with life-giving power. By the Cross on Golgotha, the prince of this world was cast out (John 12:31) and an end was put to his authority. The weapon by which he was crushed became the sign of Christ’s victory.

                  The demonic hosts tremble when they see the Cross, for by the Cross the kingdom of hell was destroyed. They do not dare to draw near to anyone who is guarded by the Cross.

The whole human race, by the death of Christ on the Cross, received deliverance from the authority of the devil, and everyone who makes use of this saving weapon is inaccessible to the demons.

                  When legions of demons appeared to St. Anthony the Great and other desert-dwellers, they guarded themselves with the Sign of the Cross, and the demons vanished.

When they appeared to Saint Symeon the Stylite, who was standing on his pillar, what seemed to be a chariot to carry him to heaven, the Saint, before mounting it, crossed himself; it disappeared and the enemy, who had hoped to cast down the ascetic from the height of his pillar, was put to shame.

One cannot enumerate all the separate examples of the manifestation of the power of the Cross in various incidents. Invisibly and unceasingly there gushes from it the Divine grace that saves the world.

                  The Sign of the Cross is made at all the Mysteries and prayers of the Church. With the making of the Sign of the Cross over the bread and wine, they become the Body and Blood of Christ. With the immersion of the Cross, the waters are sanctified. The Sign of the Cross looses us from sins. “When we are guarded by the Cross, we oppose the enemy, not fearing his nets and barking.” Just as the flaming sword in the hands of the Cherubim barred the entrance into paradise of old, so the Cross now acts invisibly in the world, guarding it from perdition.

                  The Cross is the unconquerable weapon of pious kings in the battle with enemies. Through the apparition of the Cross in the sky, the dominion of Emperor Constantine was confirmed and an end was put to the persecution against the Church. The apparition of the Cross in the sky in Jerusalem in the days of Constantius the Arian proclaimed the victory of Orthodoxy. By the power of the Cross of the Lord, Christian kings reign and will reign until Antichrist, barring his path to power and restraining lawlessness (Saint John Chrysostom, Commentary on 11 Thes. 2:6-7).

                  The “sign of the Son of Man” (Matt. 24:30), that is, the Cross, will appear in the sky in order to proclaim the end of the present world and the coming of the eternal Kingdom of the Son of God. Then all the tribes of the earth shall weep, because they loved the present age and its lusts, but all who have endured persecution for righteousness and called on the name of the Lord shall rejoice and be glad. The Cross then will save from eternal perdition all who conquered temptations by the Cross, who crucified their flesh with its passions and lusts, and took up their cross and followed their Christ.

                  But those who hated the Cross of the Lord and did not engrave the Cross in their soul will perish forever. For “the Cross is the preserver of the whole universe, the Cross is the beauty of the Church, the Cross is the might of kings, the Cross is the confirmation of the faithful, the Cross is the glory of angels and the scourge of demons” (Monday Matins).

 

Saints Peter and Paul

Orthodox Church

 

Rev. Daniel Mathewson - ActingRector – Sept. 7th, 2014         

Parish phone: 814-734-3801                      

25636 N. Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

                          

www.orthodoxcrossingville.org

 

12th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 3. The Placing of the Cincture (Sash) of the Most-holy Theotokos (395-408). Hieromartyr Cyprian, Bishop of Carthage (258). St. Gennadius, Patriarch of Constantinople (471).

 

A BLESSED WELCOME to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection.This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior. Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach our priest Fr. Daniel after the service or at coffee hour in the parish hall.

* Please follow along in the Divine Liturgy Book in the Pew beginning on page 29. We are glad you are here, we do not practice “open” communion, which means you must be a baptized Orthodox Christian who is under a spiritual father confessor, making confession regularly in order to partake of the Holy Mysteries of Christ.

 

Services this week:

 

Sun. Sept. 7th - Festal Great Vespers for the Nativity of                        the Theotokos – 6:00pm

Mon. Sept. 8th – Divine Liturgy Nativity of the                                          Theotokos - 9:30am

Wed. Sept. 10th – Daily Vespers 5:30pm (PC Meeting following)

 

UPCOMING Summer EVENTS:

 ~Women’s Bible Study/Study Group - Sept. 13th  @ the parish house 10am-12noon

 - Men’s Workday and Study- October 11th 9-12noon

 ~Sunday Church School Bonfire- Saturday Sept. 21st

Great Vespers at 6pm Bonfire to follow for Children and Parents. Sunday Church School Begins on Sept. 22nd.

Adult class will follow Liturgy each Sunday for 15-20mins.

 

Archdiocesan Youth Bond Fire October 12th at the Archdiocesan Center in Cranberry Township 4pm

 Youth Service Retreat - Nov.22nd – Holy Assumption Downtown Pittsburgh 8am-5pm -age 12 and up.

 Harvest Festival - Saturday October 25th 11-3pm

 

Those wishing to assist International Orthodox Christian Charities in its ongoing humanitarian efforts across the Middle East may do so by logging onto www.iocc.org.

 

Holy Days at Saints Peter and Paul to mark your calendar:

 

Nativity of the Theotokos- Divine Liturgy Sep. 8th

Elevation of the Holy Cross Divine Liturgy Sept 14th

Akathist Service to the New Martyrs of Alaska Sept 24th

Protection of the Theotokos- Divine Liturgy Oct. 1st.

Memorial Saturday Divine Liturgy- Oct. 25th

Synaxsis of the Archangel Michael- Divine Liturgy Nov. 8th

Entrance of the Theotokos into the Temple – DL- Nov.21st

Akathist Service Glory to God For All Things- Nov. 26th

St Nicholas Day- Divine Liturgy- Dec. 6th

Royal Hours of Nativity- St. Basil’s Vesperal Liturgy - Dec 24th

Nativity of Our Lord and Savior – Dec. 25th

 

 

Please if you are planning an event for the parish please verify with Fr. Daniel to make sure the parish schedule is open.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 Rev. Daniel Mathewson - ActingRector – Aug. 31st, 2014         

Parish phone: 814-734-3801                      

25636 N. Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

                          www.orthodoxcrossingville.org

 

12th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 3. The Placing of the Cincture (Sash) of the Most-holy Theotokos (395-408). Hieromartyr Cyprian, Bishop of Carthage (258). St. Gennadius, Patriarch of Constantinople (471).


A BLESSED WELCOME to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection.This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior. Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach our priest Fr. Daniel after the service or at coffee hour in the parish hall.

* Please follow along in the Divine Liturgy Book in the Pew beginning on page 29. We are glad you are here, we do not practice “open” communion, which means you must be a baptized Orthodox Christian who is under a spiritual father confessor, making confession regularly in order to partake of the Holy Mysteries of Christ.

 

Services this week:

 

Sat. Sept. 6th - Great Vespers @Edinboro University 4pm

Sun. Sept. 7th - Divine Liturgy 9:30 am (Hours 9:15am)

                           - Festal Great Vespers for the Nativity of the Theotokos – 6:00pm

Mon. Sept. 8th – Divine Liturgy Nativity of the Theotokos - 9:30am

 1 Corinthians 15:1-11 (Epistle)

Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received and in which you stand, by which also you are saved, if you hold fast that word which I preached to you – unless you believed in vain. For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures, and that He was seen by Cephas, then by the twelve. After that He was seen by over five hundred brethren at once, of whom the greater part remain to the present, but some have fallen asleep. After that He was seen by James, then by all the apostles. Then last of all He was seen by me also, as by one born out of due time. For I am the least of the apostles, who am not worthy to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace toward me was not in vain; but I labored more abundantly than they all, yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me. Therefore, whether it was I or they, so we preach and so you believed.

 Matthew 19:16-26 (Gospel)

Now behold, one came and said to Him, “Good Teacher, what good thing shall I do that I may have eternal life?” So He said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. But if you want to enter into life, keep the commandments.” He said to Him, “Which ones?” Jesus said, “’You shall not murder,’ ‘You shall not commit adultery,’ ‘You shall not steal,’ ‘You shall not bear false witness,’ ’Honor your father and your mother,’ and, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ “ The young man said to Him, “All these things I have kept from my youth. What do I still lack?” Jesus said to him, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell what you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.” But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions. Then Jesus said to His disciples, “Assuredly, I say to you that it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. And again I say to you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God. When His disciples heard it, they were greatly astonished, saying, “Who then can be saved?” But Jesus looked at them and said to them, “With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”

 

UPCOMING Summer EVENTS:

 This Wesnesday from 5-7pm – The Missions Team will pray and have a meeting at the Rachocki’s home for our Edinboro Parish booth. All missions team members are invited.

 THIS SATURDAY EVERYONE FROM THE PARISH IS INVITED TO VISIT OUR PARISH BOOTH AT THE Highland Games Edinboro University Saturday, Sept. 6, 2014 any time from 9-4pm We will be offering Pierogies, nutrolls, coffee, water. All profits will benefit the SPP Missions Team.

++++See Fr. Daniel or Anna Rachoki if you would like to come and spend some time at the booth to meet students and invite them to visit our parish.

 

~Women’s Bible Study/Study Group - Sept. 13th  @ the parish house 10am-12noon

 

~Sunday Church School Bonfire- Saturday Sept. 21st

Great Vespers at 6pm Bonfire to follow for Children and Parents. Sunday Church School Begins on Sept. 22nd. Adult  class will follow Liturgy each Sunday for 15-20mins.

 

Those wishing to assist International Orthodox Christian Charities in its ongoing humanitarian efforts across the Middle East may do so by logging onto www.iocc.org.

 

Holy Days to mark your calendar:

Nativity of the Theotokos- Divine Liturgy Sep. 8th

Elevation of the Holy Cross Divine Liturgy Sept 14th

Akathist Service to the New Martyrs of Alaska Sept 24th

Protection of the Theotokos- Divine Liturgy Oct. 1st.

Memorial Saturday Divine Liturgy- Oct. 25th

Synaxsis of the Archangel Michael- Divine Liturgy Nov. 8th

Entrance of the Theotokos into the Temple – DL- Nov.21st

Akathist Service Glory to God For All Things- Nov. 26th

St Nicholas Day- Divine Liturgy- Dec. 6th

Royal Hours of Nativity- St. Basil’s Vesperal Liturgy - Dec 24th

Nativity of Our Lord and Savior – Dec. 25th

 

Please if you are planning an event for the parish please verify with Fr. Daniel to make sure the parish schedule is open.

 

GOD’S BREAD….   By Fr. Stephen Freeman

Our contemporary life is often deeply removed from reality. We eat like royalty, travel like magicians, taking everything for granted. In 1991, I was serving in a parish (Anglican) that sponsored a Russian family for immigration. The Soviet Union had fallen, but little had changed in their homeland. I recall taking them to their first visit to an American grocery store with their translator. It was like a dream to them. Their first question startled me, “Is all of this for sale?” They had an idea that it might just be “for show.” I was humbled as I realized how much I took for granted.

This distance between us and the simple reality of our lives makes it difficult for us to understand the gospel. When the Scriptures speak of bread, we have no feeling for the word. Bread is just something we eat (or avoid). Today it is something we debate and fear (gluten). But it means very little to us.

The context of the Scriptures is not necessarily a context of scarcity, but it is certainly a context where drought produces famine and seasons determine what is eaten. According to paleontologists, human civilization begins with the cultivation of grain. Hunters and gatherers cannot sustain life on the level of a town. Grain was as essential as fire in the history of humanity.

This distance, it seems to me, also interferes with our comprehension of the sacraments. In my Anglican years I recall a common clergy joke about the wafers used in the liturgy. It was said that there were two acts of faith: to believe that the bread became the Body of Christ, and also to believe that the wafer was actually bread. I would extend this even to contemporary Orthodoxy. The bread is obviously bread (it is baked in the parish and is leavened). But our hearts are deeply removed from even its “breadly” reality.

Bread has been called the “staff of life.” In ancient Greece and Rome the bread ovens were often public, maintained at city expense. The baking of bread was thus something of a community event (a custom that probably stretched deep into time). It was the essential food of the ancient diet, the primary form of charity. In the early Church, members brought loaves of bread as an offering. The deacons chose the best loaves for the liturgy. The rest were shared afterwards or distributed to the poor.

In Orthodox Churches of the Russian tradition, small loaves (prosphora) are baked and given to the priest with a list of names to be remembered. The priest removes particles from the loaves and places them on the diskos along with the Eucharistic offering. The names and loaves are returned to the faithful who take them home and consume them – often as part of their morning prayers. It is a Eucharistic connection that continues throughout the week.

Few would desire to return to the dangers of famine. Nevertheless, we would do well to return to a proper attitude towards our food. We should eat slowly and thankfully, with a mind towards the goodness of God and the labor that has produced our bounty.

In my recent trip to England I was struck by the amount of farmland. Everywhere outside of villages, the land was given to farming. The wheat fields in particular were “white for the harvest.” America has seen the shrinking of its farmland over the entire course of its history. Recent decades have been especially hard. It is possible for children to grow up with no awareness of farms or where the food they eat comes from. There is clearly a diminishment of our humanity in all of this.

Eucharistic living is marked by the giving of thanks. It is also marked by the presence of bread. Bread is as essential to the Eucharist as is Christ Himself. In His great condescension, the Lord of the Harvest has united Himself with the harvest itself.

“Lord, give us this bread always.”

O God, our God, Who didst send the Heavenly Bread, the food of the whole world, our Lord and God Jesus Christ, to be our Savior, Redeemer, and Benefactor, blessing and sanctifying us:  Bless this Offering, and accept it upon Thy heavenly altar.  Remember those who offered it and those for whom it was offered, for Thou art good and lovest mankind.  Preserve us blameless in the celebration of Thy divine mysteries.  For sanctified and glorified is Thy most honorable and majestic name: of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, now and ever and unto ages of ages.  Amen.

From the Service of Preparation

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 

Rev. Daniel Mathewson - ActingRector – Aug. 17th, 2014         

Parish phone: 814-734-3801                      

25636 N. Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

                          

www.orthodoxcrossingville.org

 

10th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 1 Afterfeast of the Dormition. Martyr Myron, Presbyter, of Cyzicus (254). Ven. Alypius the Iconographer, of the Kiev Caves (Near Caves—1114). Martyrs Paul, his sister Juliana, and the rest, of Syria (ca. 273). Martyrs Thyrsus, Leucius, and Coronatus, with others, at Cæsarea in Bithynia (3rd c.). Martyr Patroclus of Troyes (3rd c.). Martyrs Straton, Philip, Eutychian and Cyprian, of Nicomedia (ca. 303). Bl. Theodoretus, Enlightener of the Lapps (Solovétsky Monastery—1571).


A BLESSED WELCOME to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection.This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior. Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach our priest Fr. Daniel after the service or at coffee hour in the parish hall.

* Please follow along in the Divine Liturgy Book in the Pew beginning on page 29. We are glad you are here, we do not practice “open” communion, which means you must be a baptized Orthodox Christian who is under a spiritual father confessor, making confession regularly in order to partake of the Holy Mysteries of Christ.

 

Services this week:

Wednesday, August 20th Daily Vespers 5:30pm

(PC Meeting 6pm)

Saturday, August 23rd Great Vespers 6pm

(Confession following

Sunday, August 24th Divine Liturgy 9:30 am

 (Hours 9:15am)

1 Corinthians 4:9-16 (Epistle)

For I think that God has displayed us, the apostles, last, as men condemned to death; for we have been made a spectacle to the world, both to angels and to men.We are fools for Christ’s sake, but you are wise in Christ! We are weak, but you are strong! You are distinguished, but we are dishonored!To the present hour we both hunger and thirst, and we are poorly clothed, and beaten, and homeless.And we labor, working with our own hands. Being reviled, we bless; being persecuted, we endure;

being defamed, we entreat. We have been made as the filth of the world, the offscouring of all things until now.

I do not write these things to shame you, but as my beloved children I warn you.For though you might have ten thousand instructors in Christ, yet you do not have many fathers; for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the gospel.Therefore I urge you, imitate me.

 

Matthew 17:14-23 (Gospel)

And when they had come to the multitude, a man came to Him, kneeling down to Him and saying,Lord, have mercy on my son, for he is an epileptic and suffers severely; for he often falls into the fire and often into the water.So I brought him to Your disciples, but they could not cure him.Then Jesus answered and said, “O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? How long shall I bear with you? Bring him here to Me.”And Jesus rebuked the demon, and it came out of him; and the child was cured from that very hour.Then the disciples came to Jesus privately and said, “Why could we not cast it out?”So Jesus said to them, “Because of your unbelief; for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you.

However, this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting.Now while they were staying in Galilee, Jesus said to them, “The Son of Man is about to be betrayed into the hands of men,and they will kill Him, and the third day He will be raised up. And they were exceedingly sorrowful.


Metropolitan Tikhon issues Pastoral Letter Concerning Violence and Extremism in the Middle East

SYOSSET, NY [OCA]

 

“We have preferred profane and material things to the commandment of love, and because we have attached ourselves to them we fight against men, whereas we ought to prefer the love of all men to all visible things and even to our own body.” (St Maximus the Confessor, The Ascetic Life, 7)

 

 

Beloved in Christ,

 

                  Our hearts have been deeply wounded by the stories and images of war and fighting throughout the world. The recent incidents of violence in the Middle East loom as tragic examples of an increasing disrespect for humanity and disregard for human life and dignity. The Orthodox Church in America joins those in the Middle East, in North America, and around the world who have raised their voices against the inhumane actions we are witnessing. We join all who condemn this blatant disregard for human dignity and life.

                  The Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Antioch and All the East, whose ministry in the Middle East consistently witnesses to the Gospel of love of Jesus Christ and the Gospel’s command to adhere to peace and non-violence, has issued a strong statement condemning the attacks against Christians in Mosul, expressed in “coercion forcing them to change their belief, pay a tax or leave their homes, while having their property confiscated.” The statement calls on “states that provide fundamentalist groups with any direct or indirect foreign support to immediately stop all forms of material, logistic, military and moral support.”

                  The Orthodox Church in America expresses its solidarity with the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Antioch in its striving for non-violence and peace. We also express our solidarity with all the suffering Christian communities of Mosul, whose expulsion is ending the Christian presence there after nearly two thousand years.

Another story of violence is unfolding yet again between Israel and the Hamas organization in Gaza. In this violence hundreds of innocent civilians have already died, some of them Israelis, most of them Palestinians. This humanitarian catastrophe in Gaza is overwhelming; hundreds of thousands of innocent people are losing their homes and struggling to survive without electricity and water.

                  Yet another narrative of violence continues in Syria. Many innocent people not involved in the fighting have lost their lives. A large proportion of the Syrian population has taken to flight, forced to live in refugee camps in the region. Millions have lost their homes, their livelihoods and their loved ones.

                  Those of us living in North America may feel a sense of helplessness when seeing and hearing of these tragedies. We ought to remember the words of St John Cassian, who writes that the “goal of peaceful improvement cannot be reached through the decisions of others, which is forever beyond our control, but is found rather in our own attitude. To be free from wrath is not dependent on the perfection of others, but stems from our own virtue, which is acquired through our own tolerance, not other people’s patience.” (Institutes, VIII.17)

                  St John is pointing to a fundamental spiritual principle: that real change only begins when we look within our own hearts. Rather than feeling helpless in the face of world tragedies, we need to recall our unity with all of mankind and to respond with prayer for the suffering and the departed. In addition, just as the ascetic struggles of the great saints, in their own time and place, have a cosmic effect, so our own effort to purify our own hearts will have an effect on the rest of the world.

                  Thus, a very concrete and practical way that we in North America can respond to the violence in the Middle East is to commit ourselves to establishing peace in our own families and communities. When the Holy Apostle James posed the question: “What causes wars, and what causes fighting among you?”, he immediately answers with a challenge for us to consider: “Is it not your passions that are at war in your members?” (James 4:1).

                  If we are truly concerned about the strife in the world today, let us begin by overcoming anger in our own hearts by striving for meekness and humility. If we are upset by the violence and destruction in the Middle East, let us direct our energy to bring peace to the conflicts within our own families. If we are horrified by images of human beings injuring and killing one another, let us offer an image of Christ by giving alms to those in need in our own neighborhood.

In this way, our deeds will be joined to our prayers, and by the action of divine grace, we will have the assurance that our merciful Lord will grant consolation to those who are suffering, will provide a place of rest for those who have departed and will bestow upon the world the peace that passes all understanding.

 

With love in Christ,

+Tikhon
Archbishop of Washington
Metropolitan of All America and Canada

 

________________________________________________________________________

UPCOMING Summer EVENTS:

 

This Saturday August 23rd at 3pm - Prosphora Making Class in the Parish hall. (Vespers follows at 6pm)

 

Sunday August 24th - Sunday Church School Teachers Meeting (End of coffee Hour)

 

TODAY Archdiocesan Family Day~ August 17th -Diocesan Center Cranberry, PA. Fun and fellowship begins at 4pm --  Fun for the Whole Family!!! See the fliers in the hall for more information. Fr. Daniel and Family will be attending and we would not like to be by ourselves!!!. PLEASE SEE Jesse Mathewson or Reader Andrew FOR RAFFLE TICKETS.

 

~ Highland Games Edinboro U- Sept.5-6 2014  (Parish Booth)

See Fr. Daniel if you would like to come and spend some time at the booth to meet students and invite them to visit our parish.

            We will also need set up and servers for any food we might like to sell, and an icon book display for the booth, and someone to oversee these as well.

 

~Women’s Bible Study/Study Group - Sept. 13th  @ the parish house 10am-12noon

 

Those wishing to assist International Orthodox Christian Charities in its ongoing humanitarian efforts across the Middle East may do so by logging onto www.iocc.org.

You Are Needed for a 2014 OCMC Mission Team!
The Orthodox Christian Mission Center (OCMC) is seeking 10 volunteers to help fill teams that will serve in Albania, Tanzania and Uganda later this year. The Albania team departing on September 17th will lead spiritual retreats for clergy wives, women lay leaders and women's groups. The Tanzania team departing on October 27th will offer theological training for the clergy of the Metropolis of Mwanza. And, the Uganda team, also departing on October 27th will offer Christian stewardship workshops to clergy and laity in various communities. Are you able to serve on one of these teams? If so, you are urgently needed! Without 10 additional volunteers these teams may not go. Please visit http://www.ocmc.org/about/open_teams.aspx, or contact OCMC’s Teams Department by e-mail at teams@ocmc.org or by phone at 1-877-463-6784 for more information and to apply. Or Talk to Anna Rachoki

 

Please if you are planning an event for the parish please verify with Fr. Daniel to make sure the parish schedule is open.

 

 

 Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 

Rev. Daniel Mathewson - ActingRector – Aug. 10th, 2014         

Parish phone: 814-734-3801                      

25636 N. Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

                          

www.orthodoxcrossingville.org

 

10th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 1 Afterfeast of the Dormition. Martyr Myron, Presbyter, of Cyzicus (254). Ven. Alypius the Iconographer, of the Kiev Caves (Near Caves—1114). Martyrs Paul, his sister Juliana, and the rest, of Syria (ca. 273). Martyrs Thyrsus, Leucius, and Coronatus, with others, at Cæsarea in Bithynia (3rd c.). Martyr Patroclus of Troyes (3rd c.). Martyrs Straton, Philip, Eutychian and Cyprian, of Nicomedia (ca. 303). Bl. Theodoretus, Enlightener of the Lapps (Solovétsky Monastery—1571).

Welcome Fr. Paul Suda

A BLESSED WELCOME to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection.This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior. Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach our priest Fr. Daniel after the service or at coffee hour in the parish hall.

* Please follow along in the Divine Liturgy Book in the Pew beginning on page 29. We are glad you are here, we do not practice “open” communion, which means you must be a baptized Orthodox Christian who is under a spiritual father confessor, making confession regularly in order to partake of the Holy Mysteries of Christ.

 

While Fr. Daniel is on vacation Aug. 4th- 13th if you have a need for a priest please contact:

Rev. Fr. Donald Valasek – St. Nicholas Orthodox Church Erie: 814 – 453 - 4902

1 Corinthians 3:9-17 (Epistle)

For we are God’s fellow workers; you are God’s field, you are God’s building. According to the grace of God which was given to me, as a wise master builder I have laid the foundation, and another builds on it. But let each one take heed how he builds on it. For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Now if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, each one’s work will become clear; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one’s work, of what sort it is. If anyone’s work which he has built on it endures, he will receive a reward. If anyone’s work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire. Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?  If anyone defiles the temple of God, God will destroy him. For the temple of God is holy, which temple you are.

 

Matthew 14:22-34 (Gospel)

Immediately Jesus made His disciples get into the boat and go before Him to the other side, while He sent the multitudes away. And when He had sent the multitudes away, He went up on the mountain by Himself to pray. Now when evening came, He was alone there. But the boat was now in the middle of the sea, tossed by the waves, for the wind was contrary. Now in the fourth watch of the night Jesus went to them, walking on the sea. And when the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, “It is a ghost!” And they cried out for fear. But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, “Be of good cheer! It is I; do not be afraid.’ And Peter answered Him and said, “Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water.” So He said, “Come.” And when Peter had come down out of the boat, he walked on the water to go to Jesus. But when he saw that the wind was boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink he cried out, saying, “Lord, save me!” And immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and caught him, and said to him, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?” And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased. Then those who were in the boat came and worshiped Him, saying, “Truly You are the Son of God.” When they had crossed over, they came to the land of Gennesaret.

 

TAKE TIME TO PRAY FOR AND REMEMBER:

The infirmed & the recovering ….John Wasko,  Joseph Tatusko, Carolyn McCartney, Mary Ann Onest Boris Demjanenko, Gordan Baldwin, Helen Miller, Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Timothy Alberti, Elizabeth Gall,Karen Sanford, Suzanne and Fr. Michael Senyo, Michael Ferra, Genevieve, Raisa Chernoff, Vincent , …. the homebound… John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy, Mary, Valentina …

Those Traveling....Theresa H., Ritsveys, Mathewsons

Military servers…Greg Hargett

Our seminarian….Tristan Gall…

Missionaries…David and Rozanne Rucker,  Mother Ines, Mother Ivonne, Mother Maria, Mother Alexandera, Children of the San Migel Hogar

 

Prayer

                  Prayer is essential to Christian life. Jesus Christ himself prayed and taught men to pray. No one who does not pray to God can be a follower of Christ.

                  In the Orthodox Church all prayer is Trinitarian. We pray in the Holy Spirit, through Jesus the Son of God, and in his name, to God the Father. We call God “our Father” because Jesus has taught us and enabled us to do so. We have the capability of addressing God as Father because we are made sons of God by the Holy Spirit (see Rom 8). In the Church we also address prayers to Christ and the Holy Spirit, the Divine Persons who are one with God the Father and exist eternally in perfect unity with him, sharing his divine being and will.

                  In the Church we also pray to the saints—not in the same way as we pray to the Persons of the Holy Trinity, but as our helpers, intercessors, and fellow-members of the Church who are already glorified with God in his divine presence. Foremost among the saints and first among the mere humans who are glorified in God’s Kingdom is Mary, the Theotokos and Queen of Heaven, the leader among our saintly intercessors before God. We can also pray to the holy angels to plead our cause before God.

                  In the traditional catechism of the Church three types of prayer are listed: asking, thanking, and praising. We can add a fourth type which can be called lamenting before God, questioning him about the conditions of life and the meaning of our existence, particularly in times of tragedy and confusion. We very often find all four kinds of prayer in the Bible.

                  Sometimes prayer is defined as a dialogue with God. T his definition is sufficient if we remember that it is a dialogue of silence, carried on in the quiet of our hearts. In the Orthodox Church a more ancient and traditional definition of prayer calls it the lifting of the mind and heart to God, the standing in his presence, the constant awareness and remembrance of his name, his existence, his power and his love. This is the kind of prayer which is also called “walking in the presence of God.”

                  The purpose of prayer is to have communion with God and to be made capable of accomplishing his Will. Christians pray to enable themselves to know God and to do his commandments. Unless a person is willing to change himself and to conform himself to Christ in the fulfillment of his commandments, he has no reason or purpose to pray. According to the saints, it is even spiritually dangerous to pray to God without the intention of responding and moving along the path that prayer will take us.

                  Praying is not merely repeating the words of prayers. Saying prayers is not the same as praying. Prayer should be done secretly, briefly, regularly, without many words, with trust in God that he hears, and with the willingness to do what God shows us to do (see Mt 6:5-15; Lk 11 and 18; Jn 14-17).

                  The Orthodox Church follows the Old Testament practice of having formal prayers according to the hours of the day. Christians are urged to pray regularly in the morning, evening and at meal times, as well as to have a brief prayer which can be repeated throughout the day under any and all circumstances. Many people use the Jesus Prayer for this purpose: “Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner!” Of course, the form of the prayer is secondary and may vary from person to person. It is the power of the prayer to bring us to God, and to strengthen us in doing his divine will that is essential.

                  The prayers of a person at home differ from those in church, since personal prayer is not the same as the communal prayer of the Church. The two types of prayer are different and should not be confused.

When we go to church to pray, we do not go there to say our private prayers. Our private prayers should be said at home, in our room, in secret, and not in church (Mt 6:5-6). This does not mean that we do not bring our personal cares, desires, troubles, questions and joys to the prayer of the Church. We certainly can, and we do. But we bring ourselves and our concerns to church to unite them to the prayer of the Church, to the eternal prayer of Christ, the Mother of God, the saints and the brothers and sisters of our own particular church community.

                  In church we pray with others, and we should therefore discipline ourselves to pray all together as one body in the unity of one mind, one heart and one soul. Once again this does not mean that our prayers in church should cease to be personal and unique; we must definitely put ourselves into our churchly prayer. In the Church, however, each one must put his own person with his own personal uniqueness into the common prayer of Christ with his Body. This is what enriches the prayer of the Church and makes it meaningful and beautiful and, we might even say, “easy” to perform. The difficulty of many church services is that they are prayers of isolated individuals who are only physically, and not spiritually, united together. The formal Church services are normally rather long in the Orthodox Church. This is so because we go to church not merely to pray. We go to church to be together, to sing together, to meditate the meaning, of the faith together, to learn together and to have union and communion together with God. This is particularly true of the Divine Liturgy of the Church. If a person wants merely to pray in the silence of his heart, he need not—and, indeed, he should not go to the church services for this purpose. The church services are not designed for silent prayer. They exist for the prayerful fellowship of all God’s people with each other, with Christ and with God.

 

 

 

UPCOMING Summer EVENTS:

 

 Prosphora Making Class Saturday August 23rd 3pm in the Parish hall.

 

 

 

~ TODAY Archdiocesan Family Day~ August 17th -Diocesan Center Cranberry, PA.  Fun for the Whole Family!!! See the fliers in the hall for more information. PLEASE SEE RDR.NATHAN or RDR. ANDREW FOR RAFFLE TICKETS.

 

 

 

~ Highland Games Edinboro U- Sept.5-6 2014   (Parish Booth)

 

 

 

~Women’s Bible Study/Study Group - Sept. 13th @ the parish house 10am-12noon

 

 

 

PARISH Bookstore… Please visit our store… We have many new titles and many new items from Guatemala. “The Tools of Spiritual Warfare” is an excellent read. “”By Way of the Desert” (365 Daily Readings) is another great title for easy daily reading for meditation and reflection. “The Life” is an excellent book for learning your faith. See Jane Cap if you would like to order a book not in our inventory.

 

 

 

You Are Needed for a 2014 OCMC Mission Team!
The Orthodox Christian Mission Center (OCMC) is seeking 10 volunteers to help fill teams that will serve in Albania, Tanzania and Uganda later this year. The Albania team departing on September 17th will lead spiritual retreats for clergy wives, women lay leaders and women's groups. The Tanzania team departing on October 27th will offer theological training for the clergy of the Metropolis of Mwanza. And, the Uganda team, also departing on October 27th will offer Christian stewardship workshops to clergy and laity in various communities. Are you able to serve on one of these teams? If so, you are urgently needed! Without 10 additional volunteers these teams may not go. Please visit http://www.ocmc.org/about/open_teams.aspx, or contact OCMC’s Teams Department by e-mail at teams@ocmc.org or by phone at 1-877-463-6784 for more information and to apply. Or Talk to Anna Rachoki

 

 

 

Please if you are planning an event for the parish please verify with Fr. Daniel to make sure the parish schedule is open.

 

 

 

When God wants to have mercy on someone, He inspires someone else to pray for him, and He helps in this prayer. 
(St. Silouan the Athonite, Writings, XX.9)

 

 

 

Do not forsake prayer, for just as the body becomes weak when it is deprived of food, so also the soul when it is deprived of prayer draws nigh to weakness and noetic death. 
(St. Gennadius of Constantinople, The Golden Chain, 44)

 

 


 Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 

Rev. Daniel Mathewson - ActingRector – Aug. 3rd, 2014         

Parish phone: 814-734-3801                      

25636 N. Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

                          

www.orthodoxcrossingville.org

 

8th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST — Tone 7. Ven. Isaac, Dalmatus, and Faustus, Ascetics of the Dalmatian Monastery at Constantinople (4th-5th c.). Ven. Anthony the Roman, Abbot, of Novgorod (1147). Martyr Razhden of Persia (Georgian—457).

 

A BLESSED WELCOME to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection.This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior. Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach our priest Fr. Daniel after the service or at coffee hour in the parish hall.

* Please follow along in the Divine Liturgy Book in the Pew beginning on page 29. We are glad you are here, we do not practice “open” communion, which means you must be a baptized Orthodox Christian who is under a spiritual father confessor, making confession regularly in order to partake of the Holy Mysteries of Christ.

 

DORMITION FAST AUGUST 1st-15th

Services this week:

Saturday, Aug. 9th NO Great Vespers

Sunday, Aug. 10th, Divine Liturgy 9:30am Hrs. 9:15

(Welcome Fr. Paul Suda!)

 

While Fr. Daniel is on vacation Aug. 4th- 13th if you have a need for a priest please contact:

Rev. Fr. Donald Valasek – St. Nicholas Orthodox Church Erie: 814 – 453 - 4902

 

1 Corinthians 1:10-18 (Epistle)

Now I plead with you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment. For it has been declared to me concerning you, my brethren, by those of Chloe’s household, that there are contentions among you. Now I say this, that each of you says, “I am of Paul,” or “I am of Apollos,” or “I am of Cephas,” or “I am of Christ.” Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul? I thank God that I baptized none of you except Crispus and Gaius, lest anyone should say that I had baptized in my own name. Yes, I also baptized the household of Stephanas. Besides, I do not know whether I baptized any other.

For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel, not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of no effect. For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.


Matthew 14:14-22 (Gospel)

And when Jesus went out He saw a great multitude; and He was moved with compassion for them, and healed their sick. When it was evening, His disciples came to Him, saying, “This is a deserted place, and the hour is already late. Send the multitudes away, that they may go into the villages and buy themselves food.” But Jesus said to them, “They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat.” And they said to Him, “We have here only five loaves and two fish.” He said, “Bring them here to Me.” Then He commanded the multitudes to sit down on the grass. And He took the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up to heaven, He blessed and broke and gave the loaves to the disciples; and the disciples gave to the multitudes. So they all ate and were filled, and they took up twelve baskets full of the fragments that remained.Now those who had eaten were about five thousand men, besides women and children. Immediately Jesus made His disciples get into the boat and go before Him to the other side, while He sent the multitudes away.

 

TAKE TIME TO PRAY FOR AND REMEMBER:

The infirmed & the recovering ….John Wasko,  Joseph Tatusko, Carolyn McCartney, Mary Ann Onest Boris Demjanenko, Gordan Baldwin, Helen Miller, Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Timothy Alberti, Elizabeth Gall,Karen Sanford, Suzanne and Fr. Michael Senyo, Michael Ferra, Genevieve, Raisa Chernoff, Vincent , …. the homebound… John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy, Mary, Valentina …

Those Traveling....Theresa H., Ritsveys, Mathewsons

Military servers…Greg Hargett

Our seminarian….Tristan Gall…

Missionaries…David and Rozanne Rucker,  Mother Ines, Mother Ivonne, Mother Maria, Mother Alexandera, Children of the San Migel Hogar

 

UPCOMING Summer EVENTS:

 Welcome back Youth of the parish! We pray you have blessed week of Camp!

 ~Holy Transfiguration services will not be held here, but we will attend the Services in Elwood City, PA at the Transfiguration Monastery on August Tuesday, 5th - 6pm Festal Great Vespers, Wednesday the 6th  -Divine Liturgy 9:30am Noon Supper and Holy Unction 2:30 pm. Three Bishops will be in attendance.

 ~Prosphora Making Class Saturday August 23rd 3pm in the Parish hall.

 ~ Archdiocesan Family Day~ August 17th -Diocesan Center Cranberry, PA   PLEASE SEE RDR.NATHAN or RDR. ANDREW FOR RAFFLE TICKETS.

 ~ Highland Games Edinboro U- Sept.5-6 2014   (Parish Booth)

 PARISH Bookstore… Please visit our store… We have many new titles and many new items from Guatemala. “The Tools of Spiritual Warfare” is an excellent read. “”By Way of the Desert” (365 Daily Readings) is another great title for easy daily reading for meditation and reflection. “The Life” is an excellent book for learning your faith. See Jane Cap if you would like to order a book not in our inventory.

 You Are Needed for a 2014 OCMC Mission Team!

The Orthodox Christian Mission Center (OCMC) is seeking 10 volunteers to help fill teams that will serve in Albania, Tanzania and Uganda later this year. The Albania team departing on September 17th will lead spiritual retreats for clergy wives, women lay leaders and women's groups. The Tanzania team departing on October 27th will offer theological training for the clergy of the Metropolis of Mwanza. And, the Uganda team, also departing on October 27th will offer Christian stewardship workshops to clergy and laity in various communities. Are you able to serve on one of these teams? If so, you are urgently needed! Without 10 additional volunteers these teams may not go. Please visit http://www.ocmc.org/about/open_teams.aspx, or contact OCMC’s Teams Department by e-mail at teams@ocmc.org or by phone at 1-877-463-6784 for more information and to apply. Or Talk to Anna Rachoki

 Please if you are planning an event for the parish please verify with Fr. Daniel to make sure the parish schedule is open.

 

On Fasting – Fr. Thomas Hopko

   Jesus Himself fasted and taught His disciples to fast.

And when you fast, do not look dismal like the hypocrites, for they disfigure their faces that their fasting may be seen by men. Truly I say to you, they have their reward. But when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face, that your fasting may not be seen by men, but your Father who is in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you. (Matthew 6:16-18)

    The purpose of fasting is to gain mastery over oneself and to conquer the passions of the flesh. It is to liberate oneself from dependence on the things of this world in order to concentrate on the things of the Kingdom of God. It is to give power to the soul so that it would not yield to temptation and sin. According to St. Seraphim, fasting is an “indispensable means” of gaining the fruit of the Holy Spirit in one’s life (cf. Conversation with Motovilov), and Jesus Himself taught that some forms of evil cannot be conquered without it (Matthew 17:21, Mark 9:29)

     Man does not fast because it pleases God if His servants do not eat, for, as the lenten hymns of the Church remind us, “the devil also never eats.” (Lenten Triodion) Neither do men fast in order to afflict themselves with suffering and pain, for God has no pleasure in the discomfort of His people. Neither do men fast with the idea that their hunger and thirst can somehow serve as a “reparation” for their sins. Such an understanding is never given in the scriptures or the writings of the saints which claim that there is no “reparation” for man’s sin but the crucifixion of Christ. Salvation is a “free gift of God” which no “works” of man can accomplish of merit. (cf. Romans 5:15-17, Ephesians 2:8-9)

     Men fast, therefore, and must fast, only to be delivered from carnal passions so that the free gift of salvation in Christ might produce great fruit in their lives. Men fast so that they might more effectively serve God who loves them and has saved them in Christ and the Spirit. Fasting without effort in virtue is wholly in vain.

Why have we fasted, and Thou seest it not? Why have we humbled ourselves, and Thou takest no knowledge of it?

Behold, in the day of your fast, you seek your own pleasure and oppress all your workers. Behold, you fast only to quarrel and fight…Fasting like yours… will not make your voice to be heard on high.

Is not this the fast that I choose: to loose the bonds of wickedness…to let the oppressed go free…is it not to share your bread with the hungry, and bring the homeless poor into your house; when you see the naked, to cover them…

Then shall your light break forth like the dawn, and your healing shall spring up speedily; your righteousness shall go before you, the glory of the Lord shall protect you. Then you shall call, and the Lord will answer; then you shall cry, and He will say: Here I am. (Isaiah 58:3-9)

“Fasting in the body, O brethren, let us also fast from sin.” This is the Church’s song in the lenten season of fasting. It is also the teaching of the saints.

...in fasting one must not only obey the rule against gluttony in regard to food, but refrain from every sin so that, while fasting, the tongue may also fast, refraining from slander, lies, evil talking, degrading one’s brother, anger and every sin committed by the tongue. One should also fast with the eyes, that is, not look at vain things…not look shamefully or fearlessly at anyone. The hands and feet should also be kept from every evil action.

When one fasts through vanity or thinking that he is achieving something especially virtuous, he fasts foolishly and soon begins to criticize others and to consider himself something great.

A man who fasts wisely…wins purity and comes to humility…and proves himself a skillful builder. (St. Abba Dorotheus, 7th c., Directions on Spiritual Training)

Saint Paul himself fasted, and in his teaching on food insists that men fast and do so in secret, without mutual inspection and judgment.

Brethren, join in imitating me, and mark those who so live as you have an example in us. For many of whom I have often told you and now tell you with tears, live as enemies of the cross of Christ. Their end is destruction, their god is their belly, and they glory in their shame, with minds set on earthly things. (Philippians 3:17-19)

All things are lawful for me, but not all things are helpful. All things are lawful for me, but I will not be enslaved by anything. Food is meant for the stomach, and the stomach for food - and God will destroy both one and the other. The body is not meant for immorality but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body. (I Corinthians 6:12-13)

Let not him who eats despise him who abstains, and let not him who abstains, pass judgment on him who eats, for God has welcomed him. Who are you to pass judgment on the servant of another?

He who observes the day, observes it in honor of the Lord. He also who eats, eats in honor of the Lord, since he gives thanks to God; while he who abstains, abstains in honor of the Lord and gives thanks to God.

Do not let what you eat cause the ruin of him for whom Christ has died… for the Kingdom of God does not mean food and drink, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit, he who thus serves Christ is acceptable to God and approved by men.

Do not for the sake of food destroy the work of God…the faith that you have keep between yourself and God…whatever does not proceed from faith (whether eating or abstaining) is sin. (cf Romans 14)

The spiritual fathers, as strictly ascetic as they were, are very clear in their teaching about fasting. They insist with the Lord and the scriptures that men must fast in order to be free from passions and lust. But they insist as well that the most critical thing is to be free from all sin, including the pride, vanity and hypocrisy which comes through foolish and sinful fasting.

...eating beyond the point of being satisfied is the door of madness through which lust enters, for the belly is the queen of passions which man serves as a slave.

But you, firm in this knowledge, choose what is best for you, according to your own powers…for the perfect person, according to Saint Paul ought both “to be full and be hungry…and do all things through Christ who strengthens (Philippians 4:12-13)

Thus a man who strives for salvation…must not allow himself to eat to fullness…but should still eat all kinds of food so that on the one hand he avoid boastful pride and on the other not show disdain for God’s creation which is most excellent…Such is the reasoning of those who are wise! (St. Gregory of Sinai, Instruction to Hesychasts)

St. Isaac of Syria says, “Meager food at the table of the pure cleanses the soul of those who partake from all passion…for the work of fasting and vigil is the beginning of every effort against sin and lust…almost all passionate drives decrease through fasting.”

For the holy fathers taught us to be killers of passions and not killers of the body. Partake of everything that is permissible with thanksgiving, to the glory of God and to avoid boastful arrogance; but refrain from every excess. (The Monks Callistus and Ignatius, 14th c., Directions to Hesychasts)

If such is the teaching to hesychast monks, it is certainly applicable to all Christians as well. The whole essence of the matter is put simply and clearly in these two short stories from the fathers of the desert.

A certain brother brought fresh loaves of bread and invited his elders. When they had eaten much, the brother, knowing their travail of abstinence, began humbly to beg them to eat more. “For God’s sake, eat this day and be filled.” And they ate another ten. Behold how these that were true monks and sincere in abstinence did eat more than they needed, for the sake of God.

Epiphanius, bishop of Cyprus, called the abbot Hilarion to see him. A portion of fowl was set be- fore them and the bishop invited the abbot to eat. The old man said, “Forgive me, Father, but since the time I took this habit I have never eaten anything that has been killed.”

And Epiphanius said to him, “And from the time I took this habit I have let no man sleep who has anything against me, and neither have I slept holding anything against anyone.”

And the old man said to him, “Forgive me, Father, for your way of life is greater than mine.” (The Sayings of the Fathers)

 

                                                                       

 

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church

 

Rev. Daniel Mathewson - ActingRector - July 27th, 2014         

Parish phone: 814-734-3801                      

25636 N. Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

                          

www.orthodoxcrossingville.org

 

Greatmartyr and Healer Panteleimon

 

A BLESSED WELCOME to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection.This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior. Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach our priest Fr. Daniel after the service or at coffee hour in the parish hall.

* Please follow along in the Divine Liturgy Book in the Pew beginning on page 29. We are glad you are here, we do not practice “open” communion, which means you must be a baptized Orthodox Christian who is under a spiritual father confessor, making confession regularly in order to partake of the Holy Mysteries of Christ.

 

Services this week:

Wednesday, Daily Vespers 6pm

Saturday, Aug. 2nd Great Vespers 6pm (Inquirers Class to follow)

Sunday, Aug. 3rd, Divine Liturgy 9:30am Hrs. 9:15

 

TAKE TIME TO PRAY FOR AND REMEMBER:

The infirmed & the recovering ….John Wasko,  Joseph Tatusko, Carolyn McCartney, Mary Ann Onest Boris Demjanenko, Gordan Baldwin, Helen Miller, Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Timothy Alberti, Elizabeth Gall,Karen Sanford, Suzanne and Fr. Michael Senyo, Michael Ferra, Genevieve, Raisa Chernoff, Vincent , …. the homebound… John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy, Mary, Valentina …

Those Traveling....Natalies, Ritsveys

Military servers…Greg Hargett

Our seminarian….Tristan Gall…

Missionaries…David and Rozanne Rucker,  Mother Ines, Mother Ivonne, Mother Maria, Mother Alexandera, Children of the San Migel Hogar

 

MONTHY PARISH FINANCIAL REPORT for JUNE 2014

Income: $7,487.50

Expenses: $5,672.31

                                                                       

*Pledge Cards will be coming out soon, please pray and consider how you will give this next year so Parish Council can compile our budget and present it. Your pledges are how the budget is formed, so please give generously so we can stay in the black for the year, as we have been running on a deficit budget for the past few years. The money in the savings account is being used for beautification and maintenance.

 

WINNER OF THE 50/50 Raffle at the Chicken Dinner was:

David Burbules

RD1

Edinboro, PA

 

UPCOMING Summer EVENTS:

 

 

~ Today St. Savas Youth Camp July 27-Aug 2 Glory to God we have 18 Campers going this year! Please pray for our young people who will attend.

 

~Holy Transfiguration services will not be held here, but we will attend the Services in Elwood City, PA at the Transfiguration Monastery on August 6th.

 

~ Archdiocesan Family Day~ August 17th -Diocesan Center Cranberry, PA  PLEASE SEE RDR. NATHAN FOR RAFFLE TICKETS.

 

~ Highland Games Edinboro U- Sept.5-6 2014   (Parish Booth)

 

PARISH Bookstore… Please visit our store… We have many new titles and many new items from Guatemala. “The Tools of Spiritual Warfare” is an excellent read. “”By Way of the Desert” (365 Daily Readings) is another great title for easy daily reading for meditation and reflection. “The Life” is an excellent book for learning your faith. See Jane Cap if you would like to order a book not in our inventory.

 

You Are Needed for a 2014 OCMC Mission Team!
The Orthodox Christian Mission Center (OCMC) is seeking 10 volunteers to help fill teams that will serve in Albania, Tanzania and Uganda later this year. The Albania team departing on September 17th will lead spiritual retreats for clergy wives, women lay leaders and women's groups. The Tanzania team departing on October 27th will offer theological training for the clergy of the Metropolis of Mwanza. And, the Uganda team, also departing on October 27th will offer Christian stewardship workshops to clergy and laity in various communities. Are you able to serve on one of these teams? If so, you are urgently needed! Without 10 additional volunteers these teams may not go. Please visit http://www.ocmc.org/about/open_teams.aspx, or contact OCMC’s Teams Department by e-mail at teams@ocmc.org or by phone at 1-877-463-6784 for more information and to apply. Or Talk to Anna Rachoki

 

Please if you are planning an event for the parish please verify with Fr. Daniel to make sure the parish schedule is open.

The Great Martyr and Healer Panteleimon

 

    The Great Martyr and Healer Panteleimon was born in the city of Nicomedia into the family of the illustrious pagan Eustorgius, and he was named Pantoleon. His mother St Euboula (March 30) was a Christian. She wanted to raise her son in the Christian Faith, but she died when the future martyr was just a young child. His father sent Pantoleon to a pagan school, after which the young man studied medicine at Nicomedia under the renowned physician Euphrosynus. Pantoleon came to the attention of the emperor Maximian (284-305), who wished to appoint him as royal physician when he finished his schooling.

     The hieromartyrs Hermolaus, Hermippus and Hermocrates, survivors of the massacre of 20,000 Christians in 303 (December 28), were living secretly in Nicomedia at that time. St Hermolaus saw Pantoleon time and again when he came to the house where they were hiding. Once, the priest invited the youth to the house and spoke about the Christian Faith. After this Pantoleon visited St Hermolaus every day.

One day the saint found a dead child on the street. He had been bitten by a great snake, which was still beside the child’s body. Pantoleon began to pray to the Lord Jesus Christ to revive the dead child and to destroy the venomous reptile. He firmly resolved that if his prayer were fulfilled, he would become a follower of Christ and receive Baptism. The child rose up alive, and the snake died before Pantoleon’s eyes.

     After this miracle, Pantoleon was baptized by St Hermolaus with the name Panteleimon (meaning “all-merciful”). Speaking with Eustorgius, St Panteleimon prepared him to accept Christianity. When the father saw how his son healed a blind man by invoking Jesus Christ, he then believed in Christ and was baptized by St Hermolaus together with the man whose sight was restored.

     After the death of his father, St Panteleimon dedicated his life to the suffering, the sick, the unfortunate and the needy. He treated all those who turned to him without charge, healing them in the name of Jesus Christ. He visited those held captive in prison. These were usually Christians, and he healed them of their wounds. In a short time, reports of the charitable physician spread throughout the city. Forsaking the other doctors, the inhabitants began to turn only to St Panteleimon.

     The envious doctors told the emperor that St Panteleimon was healing Christian prisoners. Maximian urged the saint to refute the charge by offering sacrifice to idols. St Panteleimon confessed himself a Christian, and suggested that a sick person, for whom the doctors held out no hope, should be brought before the emperor. Then the doctors could invoke their gods, and Panteleimon would pray to his God to heal the man. A man paralyzed for many years was brought in, and pagan priests who knew the art of medicine invoked their gods without success. Then, before the very eyes of the emperor, the saint healed the paralytic by calling on the name of Jesus Christ. The ferocious Maximian executed the healed man, and gave St Panteleimon over to fierce torture.

     The Lord appeared to the saint and strengthened him before his sufferings. They suspended the Great Martyr Panteleimon from a tree and scraped him with iron hooks, burned him with fire and then stretched him on the rack, threw him into a cauldron of boiling tar, and cast him into the sea with a stone around his neck. Throughout these tortures the martyr remained unhurt, and denounced the emperor.

       At this time the priests Hermolaus, Hermippus and Hermocrates were brought before the court of the pagans. All three confessed their faith in the Savior and were beheaded (July 26).

     By order of the emperor they brought the Great Martyr Panteleimon to the circus to be devoured by wild beasts. The animals, however, came up to him and licked his feet. The spectators began to shout, “Great is the God of the Christians!” The enraged Maximian ordered the soldiers to stab with the sword anyone who glorified Christ, and to cut off the head of the Great Martyr Panteleimon.

     They led the saint to the place of execution and tied him to an olive tree. While the martyr prayed, one of the soldiers struck him with a sword, but the sword became soft like wax and inflicted no wound. The saint completed his prayer, and a Voice was heard from Heaven, calling the passion-bearer by his new name and summoning him to the heavenly Kingdom.

     Hearing the Voice, the soldiers fell down on their knees before the holy martyr and begged forgiveness. They refused to continue with the execution, but St Panteleimon told them to fulfill the emperor’s command, because otherwise they would have no share with him in the future life. The soldiers tearfully took their leave of the saint with a kiss.

       When the saint was beheaded, the olive tree to which the saint was tied became covered with fruit. Many who were present at the execution believed in Christ. The saint’s body was thrown into a fire, but remained unharmed, and was buried by Christians . St Panteleimon’s servants Laurence, Bassos and Probus witnessed his execution and heard the Voice from Heaven. They recorded the life, the sufferings and death of the saint.

       Portions of the holy relics of the Great Martyr Panteleimon were distributed throughout all the Christian world. His venerable head is now located at the Russian monastery of St Panteleimon on Mt. Athos.

The veneration of the holy martyr in the Russian Orthodox Church was already known in the twelfth century. Prince Izyaslav (in Baptism, Panteleimon), the son of St Mstislav the Great, had an image of St Panteleimon on his helmet. Through the intercession of the saint he remained alive during a battle in the year 1151. On the Feast of the Great Martyr Panteleimon, Russian forces won two naval victories over the Swedes (in 1714 near Hanhauze and in 1720 near Grenham).

St Panteleimon is venerated in the Orthodox Church as a mighty saint, and the protector of soldiers. This aspect of his veneration is derived from his first name Pantoleon, which means “a lion in everything”. His second name, Panteleimon, given him at Baptism, which means “all-merciful”, is manifest in the veneration of the martyr as a healer. The connection between these two aspects of the saint is readily apparent in that soldiers, receiving wounds more frequently than others, are more in need of a physician-healer. Christians waging spiritual warfare also have recourse to this saint, asking him to heal their spiritual wounds.

       The holy Great Martyr and Healer Panteleimon is invoked in the Mystery of Anointing the Sick, at the Blessing of Water, and in the Prayers for the Sick.

The Feast of the holy Great Martyr and Healer Panteleimon is the patronal Feast of the Russian monastery on Athos. The forefeast starts eight days before the Feast. Each day after Vespers, Moliebens are sung with Canons in each of the eight tones. Thus, each day has its own particular Canon. The second day of the Feast is the monastery feastday. On this day a general Panikhida is served after Vespers in memory of the founders and benefactors of the monastery, and kollyva (kutia: wheat or rice boiled with honey) is blessed and distributed.

         The verses of the Ninth Ode of the Canon of the Great Martyr and Healer Panteleimon from the manuscript of the Athonite service are reprinted in the “Journal of the Moscow Patriarchate” insert into lives values (0, 1975, No.3, pp. 45-47).

 

News on the Monastic Synaxsis (Gathering)

Syosset, NY

 

With the blessing of their diocesan bishops, the superiors (or their representatives) of monastic communities within the Orthodox Church in America gathered at the Chancery here for a “Synaxis” July 21-23, 2014.

In addition to spiritual fellowship and mutual upbuilding and encouragement, common concerns and the emerging nature of North American monasticism were discussed.

His Beatitude, Metropolitan Tikhon, called for the Synaxis as an expression of his commitment to the strengthening of monastic life within the OCA and in an effort to identify areas of concern for the OCA’s monastic communities that could be better addressed on a wider level within the Church or by means of stronger inter-monastery cooperation.

The OCA counts some 25 men’s and women’s monastic communities in the United States, Canada and Mexico.

Metropolitan Tikhon and the gathered superiors (or their representatives) issued the following statement at the close of the Synaxis.

STATEMENT OF THE SYNAXIS OF SUPERIORS OF MONASTERIES
July 21-23, 2014

As the Synaxis of abbots and abbesses, we were grateful to be together for these days and rejoiced at our intuitive sharing with each other in the Church services, at meals and in conversations about our common monastic life.  While recognizing our shared challenges, especially in forming monasticism in North America, we can affirm the general health of monasteries in the OCA. We are committed:

  • To struggle to pray unceasingly
  • To live the values of the desert in the 21st century
  • To be witnesses and missionaries of the kingdom “that is not of this world”
  • To intercede for all people, for the Church and especially for the sick, the suffering and the departed
  • To be welcoming places of spiritual retreat and hospitality whenever possible, especially for clergy and their families
  • To continue the effort to establish a truly indigenous and organic monastic presence in North America
  • To encourage the Church at large to celebrate the diversity of monastic communities

During our wide-ranging discussions over the three days, we agreed:

  • That the nurturing and encouraging of monastic vocations should be a priority for the entire Church
  • That monastic life is a vital part of the mission of the church
  • That the formation and training of monastics should be developed more fully within each monastic community
  • That spiritual health can and must be in harmony with psychological health. We don’t have to pretend we are professional therapists, but there is value in our virtue of listening and supporting people in prayer
  • That families, parishes and monasteries are mutually dependent: healthy parishes with healthy parents produce healthy monastic candidates
  • That the monastic “mindset” (phronema) is to be conveyed to the entire Church
  • That monastics should have a strong presence at All American Councils
  • That parish awareness of monastic life ought to be encouraged, perhaps by setting aside a month or at least a Sunday devoted to connecting with monks, nuns and monasteries
  • That the emergence of authentic monasticism in North America can only come with time, effort and the grace of God

Finally, we were grateful for this opportunity to meet and pray together and agreed that such meetings would be helpful on an ongoing basis. We agreed that the next meeting of the Synaxis of monastery superiors will take place next year, October 27-29, 2015, at a monastery location to be confirmed.

 

Holy Scripture:

 

We then who are strong ought to bear with the scruples of the weak, and not to please ourselves. Let each of us please his neighbor for his good, leading to edification. For even Christ did not please Himself; but as it is written, “The reproaches of those who reproached You fell on Me.” For whatever things were written before were written for our learning, that we through the patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope. Now may the God of patience and comfort grant you to be like-minded toward one another, according to Christ Jesus, bthat you may with one mind and one mouth glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore receive one another, just as Christ also received us, to the glory of God. Rom. 15:1-7

 

 

“Son of David, have mercy on us!”

 

Saints Peter and Paul Announcements

 

Rev. Daniel Mathewson - ActingRector - July 20th, 2014         

Parish phone: 814-734-3801                      

25636 N. Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412

                          

www.orthodoxcrossingville.org

 

Holy Apostles Peter and Paul

 

A BLESSED WELCOME to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection.This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior. Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach our priest Fr. Daniel after the service or at coffee hour in the parish hall.

 

Services this week:

Wednesday, Daily Vespers 5:30

Saturday, July 26thth Great Vespers 6pm (Inquirers Class to follow)

Sunday, July 27th, Divine Liturgy 9:30am Hrs. 9:15

 

TAKE TIME TO PRAY FOR AND REMEMBER:

The infirmed & the recovering …. Joseph Tatusko, Carolyn McCartney, Mary Ann Onest Boris Demjanenko, Gordan Baldwin, Helen Miller, Christina Harmon, Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Timothy Alberti, Elizabeth Gall,Karen Sanford, Suzanne Senyo, Michael Ferra, Genevieve, Raisa Chernoff , James, …. the homebound… John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy, Mary, Vincent, Valentina …

Those Traveling....Natalies

Military servers…Greg Hargett

Our seminarian….Tristan Gall…

Our Misionary Team-

Missionaries…David and Rozanne Rucker,  Mother Ines, Mother Ivonne, Mother Maria, Mother Alexandera, Children of the San Migel Hogar

 

                                                                       

TODAY-OUR ANNUAL CHICKEN DINNER -NOON to 4p

 

Parish Council Meeting - JULY 23rd  6PM

 

PARISH Bookstore… Please visit our store… We have many new titles and many new items from Guatemala. “The Tools of Spiritual Warfare” is an excellent read. “”By Way of the Desert” (365 Daily Readings) is another great title for easy daily reading for meditation and reflection. “The Life” is an excellent book for learning your faith. See Jane Cap if you would like to order a book not in our inventory.

 

*Pledge Cards will be coming out soon, please pray and consider how you will give this next year so Parish Council can compile our budget and present it. Your pledges are how the budget is formed, so please give generously so we can stay in the black for the year, as we have been running on a deficit budget for the past few years. The money in the savings account is being used for beautification and maintenance.

 

MISSION TEAM REPORT…

Glory to God our Missions Team had a very fruitful week in Boswell PA this past week. We had 4 people from our parish serve on the trip. The team was made up of 5 different parishes from our Archdiocese the Eastern Diocese and the Midwest Diocese. We worked all week on the Parish Cemetery and parish Rectory of Sts. Peter and Paul in Boswell PA.  We painted all of the windows and doors on the Rectory, replaced the back porch with a new deck, repaired and painted the front porch, repaired and patched the roof, trimmed trees and landscaped the cemetery and put up 50ft new split rail fence. We were blessed by the hospitality of the parishioners of St. Mary’s in Central City whose Ladies Altar Society fed us each night with wonderful meals. Thank you for your support of our team here and your prayers. Olivia is doing fine and is recovering from her accident, thank you to all who prayed for her. It was a blessing to know we had powerful prayer support for all we did. The Mission team plans to continue to serve, please plan to get involve in future projects as you will be blessed as we have been.

 

UPCOMING Summer EVENTS:

 

 

~ TODAY Saints Peter and Paul BBQ Chicken Dinner

 

~ NEXT WEEK St. Savas Youth Camp July 27-Aug 2 Glory to God we have 18 Campers going this year! Please pray for our young people who will attend.

 

~Holy Transfiguration services will not be held here, but we will attend the Services in Elwood City, PA at the Transfiguration Monastery on August 6th.

 

~ Archdiocesan Family Day~ August 17th -Diocesan Center Cranberry, PA

 

~ Highland Games Edinboro U- Sept.5-6 2014   (Parish Booth)

 

 

Please if you are planning an event for the parish please verify with Fr. Daniel to make sure the parish schedule is open.

Saints Peter and Paul Announcements

Rev. Daniel Mathewson - ActingRector - July 6th, 2014         

Parish phone: 814-734-3801                      

25636 N. Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412                          

www.orthodoxcrossingville.org

 

Holy Apostles Peter and Paul

 

A BLESSED WELCOME to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection.This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior. Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach our priest Fr. Daniel after the service or at coffee hour in the parish hall.

 

Services this week and Next:

Wednesday, July 9th Daily Vespers 6:00pm

Saturday, July 12th Great Vespers 6pm

Sunday, July 13th, Divine Liturgy 9:30am Hrs. 9:15

TAKE TIME TO PRAY FOR AND REMEMBER:

The infirmed & the recovering …. Boris Demjanenko, Gordan Baldwin, Helen Miller, Christina Harmon, Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Timothy Alberti, Elizabeth Gall,Karen Sanford, Suzanne Senyo, Michael Ferra, Genevieve, Raisa Chernoff , James, Amanda, Damian, Brennan, Annabelle…. the homebound… John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy, Mary, Vincent …

Those Traveling....Natalies

Military servers…Greg Hargett

Our seminarian….Tristan Gall…

Our Misionary Team- Trip to Boswell PA

Missionaries…David and Rozanne Rucker,  Mother Ines, Mother Ivonne, Mother Maria, Mother Alexandera, Children of the San Migel Hogar

 

_____________________________________________________________________                                          JULY 20th 2014

Ss. Peter and Paul ‘s Annual CHICKEN DINNER

We need a lot of help for the Chicken Dinner in July so please volunteer.  Men….set up for the event will be on Saturday the 19th at 1pm. Please contact Karen Raydo and let her know you are available to serve.

 

Archdiocesan- Missions Trip July 14-18th 2014

TO Boswell, PA The team will be restoring an old rectory and parish cemetery Sts. Peter and Paul in Boswell PA! Our Bishop plans to make the property into a monastery.

~~If you would like to make a donation toward this please make your donation to our Mission Team fund.

                                                     

“Garden Day” JULY 13th – Sunday of next week following Coffee Hour the Sunday School Students and Anyone who would like can come and plant flowers and rake and clean up our Icon Garden. Please see Megan Clayton for more info.

 

The Ladies still need donations to buy deserts for the Dinner on the 20th. If you cannot work, but would like to donate, please see Karen Raydo or Jane Capp. Also, please sign up for a job at the dinner or to do some final cleaning.

PARISH Bookstore… Please visit our store… We have many new titles and many new items from Guatemala. “The Tools of Spiritual Warfare” is an excellent read. “”By Way of the Desert” (365 Daily Readings) is another great title for easy daily reading for meditation and reflection. “The Life” is an excellent book for learning your faith. See Jane Cap if you would like to order a book not in our inventory.

 

A biyearly newsletter for the parish will be coming out this week, if you have any information you would like published this is the final call. Please see Fr. Daniel. If you have a business and would like some free advertising please give your business card to Fr. Daniel.                    

 

Pledge Cards will be coming out soon, please pray and consider how you will give this next year so Parish Council can compile our budget and present it. Your pledges are how the budget is formed, so please give generously so we can stay in the black for the year, as we have been running on a deficit budget for the past few years. The money in the savings account is being used for beautification and maintenance.

 

Mission Team Meeting TODAY during Coffee Hour.

UPCOMING Summer EVENTS:

 

~ Archdiocesan- Missions Trip July 14-18th 2014 in Boswell, PA If you would like to attend see Fr. Daniel for more info.

~ Saints Peter and Paul BBQ Chicken Dinner and festival- Sunday, July 20th 2014 from 12-4pm (See Karen to Volunteer)

~ St. Savas Youth Camp July 27-Aug 2

 

Summer Orthodox Family movie series:

THIS WEEK!!!!   Friday, July 11th 7pm: BYOPC

“St. Nicholi the Serb”

 

~ Archdiocesan Family Day~ August 17th -Diocesan Center Cranberry, PA

 

~ Highland Games Edinboro U- Sept.5-6 2014   (Parish Booth)

 

Please if you are planning an event for the parish please verify with Fr. Daniel to make sure the parish schedule is open .

 

Beholding the Face of God by Fr. Stephen Freeman

My mind wandered back to these thoughts as I pondered the growing phenomenon of “selfies.” Even the President cannot resist making them. Of course, the “selfie” is the passion-driven distortion of the theology of the face – existence as ego. For the mystery of the face is not to look at myself, but to look at the other. You are God’s “selfie.” Ponder it.

Nothing about the human body is as intimate as the face. We generally think of other aspects of our bodies when we say “intimate,” but it is our face that reveals the most about us. It is the face we seek to watch in order to see what others are thinking, or even who they are. The importance of the face is emphasized repeatedly in the Scriptures. In the Old Testament, it is the common expression for how we rightly meet one another – and rarely – God Himself – “face to face.”

In the New Testament, St. Paul uses the language of the face to describe our transformation into the image of Christ.

The holy icons are doubtless the most abundant expression of the “theology of the face,” and perhaps among the most profound contributions of Orthodoxy to the world and the proclamation of what it truly means to be human. Every saint, from the least to the greatest, shares the same attribute as Christ in their icons. We see all of them, face to face. In the icons, no person is ever depicted in profile – with two exceptions – Judas Iscariot and the demons. For it is in the vision of the face that we encounter someone as person. It is our sin that turns us away from the face of another – our effort to make ourselves somehow other than or less than personal. It is a manifestation of our turning away from God.

In human behavior, the emotion most associated with hiding the face is shame. The feeling of shame brings an immediate and deep instinct to hide or cover the face. Even infants, confronted by embarrassment or mild shame, will cover their faces with their hands or quickly tuck their face into the chest of the one holding them. It is part of the unbearable quality of shame.

Hiding is the instinctive response of Adam and Eve. “We were naked and we hid…” is their explanation. Readers have always assumed that it is the nakedness of their intimate parts that drive the first couple to hide. I think it more likely that it was their faces they most wanted to cover.

In an extended use of the story of Moses’ encounter with God after which he veiled his face, St. Paul presents the gospel of Christ as a transforming, face-to-face relationship with Christ.

     Therefore, since we have such hope, we use great boldness of speech–unlike Moses, who put a veil over his face so that the children of Israel could not look steadily at the end of what was passing away. But their minds were blinded. For until this day the same veil remains unlifted in the reading of the Old Testament, because the veil is taken away in Christ. But even to this day, when Moses is read, a veil lies on their heart. Nevertheless when one turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. Now the Lord is the Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord. Therefore, since we have this ministry, as we have received mercy, we do not lose heart. But we have renounced the hidden things of shame, not walking in craftiness nor handling the word of God deceitfully, but by manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man’s conscience in the sight of God. But even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them. For we do not preach ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord, and ourselves your bondservants for Jesus’ sake. For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. (2Co 3:12-6 NKJ)

The veil of Moses is an image of the blindness of the heart and spiritual bondage. Turning to Christ removes this blindness and hardness of heart. With unveiled faces we behold the knowledge of the glory of God revealed in the face of Jesus Christ and are transformed into the very same image which is Christ.

In Russian, the word lik (лик) can mean face and person. Sergius Bulgakov plays with various forms of the word in his book Icons and the Name of God. It is an essential Orthodox insight. The Greek word for person (πρόσωπον) also carries this double meaning. The unveiled or unhidden face is a face without shame – or a face that no longer hides from its shame. This is perhaps the most fundamental aspect of our transformation in Christ. The self in whom shame has been healed is the self that is able to live as person.

We are restored to our essential and authentic humanity – our personhood. We behold Christ face to face, as a person would who looks into a mirror. And, as St. John says, “We shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is” (1Jo 3:2 NKJ).

The sacrament of penance boldly walks directly into the world of shame. Archimandrite Zacharias says:

… if we know to whom we present ourselves, we shall have the courage to take some shame upon ourselves. I remember that when I became a spiritual father at the monastery, Fr. Sophrony said to me, “Encourage the young people that come to you to confess just those things about which they are ashamed, because that shame will be converted into spiritual energy that can overcome the passions and sin.” In confession, the energy of shame becomes energy against the passions. As for a definition of shame, I would say it is the lack of courage to see ourselves as God sees us. (from The Enlargement of the Heart).

This is not an invitation to toxic shame – nor an invitation to take on yet more shame – it is a description of the healing from shame that is given in Christ. That healing is “the courage to see ourselves as God sees us.” It is the courage to answer like the prophet Samuel, “Here I am!” when God calls. God called to Adam who spoke from his shameful and faceless hiding.

Some of the mystical sermons of the fathers speak of Christ seeking Adam out a second time – but this time, in Hades, when Christ descended to the dead. There, Adam, hid no longer, turned to face the risen Lord. And so the traditional icon of the resurrection shows Christ taking Adam and Eve out of the smashed gates of Hades.

The gates of Hades are written in our faces – as are the gates of paradise. It is the mystery of our true self – the one that is being re-created in the image of Christ – precisely as we behold Him face to face and discover that no shame need remain. Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. Sweet liberty! http://glory2godforallthings.com/

Saints Peter and Paul Announcements

Rev. Daniel Mathewson - ActingRector - June 29th, 2014         

Parish phone: 814-734-3801                      

25636 N. Mosiertown Rd. Crossingville, PA 16412                          

www.orthodoxcrossingville.org

 

Holy Apostles Peter and Paul

 

A BLESSED WELCOME to all visitors, on this weekly celebration of the Resurrection.This is the Final Covenanted Community of Christ’s Holy Church found here in Crossingville, and found in the same communities across the world. Our joy is made complete by the unity of conviction and intention we share with fellow Orthodox Christians who worship together. We are all sinners on the journey --asking for mercy, and seeking to love others and looking for eternal life in the Holy Trinity through Christ Jesus Our Lord and Savior. Any questions you may have about the Orthodox faith or would like to speak more with someone, feel free to approach our priest Fr. Daniel after the service or at coffee hour in the parish hall.

 

Services this week and Next:

Wednesday, July 2nd Daily Vespers 6:00pm

Saturday July 5th, Great Vespers 6pm

Sunday, July 6th, Divine Liturgy 9:30am Hrs 9:15

Prayers, and Upcoming Events:

 

-Pray for: the infirm & the recovering …. Boris Demjanenko, Gordan Baldwin, Helen Miller, Christina Harmon, Theresa Jouver, Mary-Louise Gall, Timothy Alberti, Elizabeth Gall,Karen Sanford, Suzanne Senyo, Michael Ferra, Genevieve, Raisa Chernoff , James…. the homebound… John Bicko, Mary Gall, Irene Hoovler, Pete Koman, Donna & John Novak, Josephine Olynik, Ann Smith, Andy, Mary, Vincent …Those Traveling .... military servers…Greg Hargett….our seminarian….Tristan Gall…Newly departed…Nicholai, Dale

                                                     

 

JULY 20th 2014

Sts. Peter and Paul ‘s Annual CHICKEN DINNER

We need a lot of help for the Chicken Dinner in July so please volunteer.  Men, set up for the event will be on Saturday the 19th at 1pm. Please contact Karen Raydo and let her know you are available to serve.

                                                     

PARISH Bookstore… Please visit our store… We have many new titles and many new items from Guatemala. “The Tools of Spiritual Warfare” is an excellent read. “”By Way of the Desert” (365 Daily Readings) is another great title for easy daily reading for meditation and reflection. “The Life” is an excellent book for learning your faith. See Jane Cap if you would like to order a book not in our inventory.

 

A biyearly newsletter for the parish will be coming out this week, if you have any information you would like published please see Fr. Daniel. If you have a business and would like some free advertising please give your business card to Fr. Daniel.                      

 

Pledge Cards will be coming out this week please pray and consider how you will give this next year so Parish Council can compile our budget and present it. Your pledges are how the budget is formed, so please give generously so we can stay in the black for the year, as we have been running on a deficit budget for the past few years. The money in the savings account is being used for beautification and maintenance.

 

UPCOMING Summer EVENTS:

 

~ TODAY Saints Peter and Paul Patronal Feast Day Sunday, June 29th, 2014

~ Archdiocesan- Missions Trip July 14-18th 2014 in Boswell, PA If you would like to attend see Fr. Daniel for more info.

~ Saints Peter and Paul BBQ Chicken Dinner and festival- Sunday, July 20th 2014 from 12-4pm (See Karen to Volunteer)

~ St. Savas Youth Camp July 27-Aug 2

 

Summer Orthodox Family movie series:

 

Friday, July 11th 7pm: BYOPC

“St. Nicholi the Serb”

 

~ Archdiocesan Family Day~ August 17th -Diocesan Center Cranberry, PA

 

~ Highland Games Edinboro U- Sept.5-6 2014   (Parish Booth)

 

Harlots and Drunkards at the Last Banquet

By Fr. Stephen Freeman

     Once a week I teach a class at a local alcohol and drug treatment program. It is on the “spirituality of recovery.” Recently I shared Marmaladov’s speech from Crime and Punishment (at the end of this article). There were tears in the room. For many, the version of the gospel they have heard only condemns. Most of the men I meet want to get well, to get sober. Not all of them believe that God is actually on their side. Marmaladov’s speech is wonderfully “over the top.” Do we dare believe that God will be (is) so kind?

     As He passed by, He saw Levi the son of Alphaeus sitting at the tax office. And He said to him, “Follow Me.” So he arose and followed Him. Now it happened, as He was dining in Levi’s house, that many tax collectors and sinners also sat together with Jesus and His disciples; for there were many, and they followed Him. And when the scribes and Pharisees saw Him eating with the tax collectors and sinners, they said to His disciples, “How is it that He eats and drinks with tax collectors and sinners?”

     When Jesus heard it, He said to them, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance.” (Mark 2:14-17)

     What struck me as I listened to it was a unique quality of Christ as God incarnate: everywhere He goes the icon of the Kingdom forms around Him. In this particular gospel passage, the image is that of the banquet at the end of the ages, the Messianic banquet. And as Christ warned others, the harlots and sinners have gotten there ahead of them (Matt. 21:31).

Every meal that Christ shares in the gospels, because of who He is, cannot help but be the Messianic Banquet. Every table becomes an altar, every meal, the Eucharist.

     Before approaching the Holy Cup at Divine Liturgy, Orthodox Christians say in unison:

I believe, O Lord, and I confess, that Thou art truly the Christ, the Son of the Living God, who camest into the world to save sinners, of whom I am first…

       It is not unlike the beautiful communion prayer of the Anglican reformer, Thomas Cranmer: “We are not worthy so much as to gather up the crumbs under Thy table…”

     It is the true image of the great banquet – a gathering of the unrighteous with the Righteous One, the unworthy with Only Worthy. This is the other side of the “Narrow Door.” Here the difficult path is not marked by asceticism, but by a humility, indeed a humility wrought by a broken life. I have encountered such humility many times, and have frequently found my own “religious” accomplishments soundly rebuked.                        I do not need anyone to remind me that 1 Corinthians 6:10 says that “drunkards” will not inherit the Kingdom. But, O strange wonder, many of them will be found in the Kingdom while others are thrust out! Dostoevsky’s Marmeladov explains why.

Marmeladov’s Vision…

…”And He will judge and will forgive all, the good and the evil, the wise and the meek…And when He has done with all of them, then He will summon us, ‘You too come forth,’ He will say, ‘Come forth, ye drunkards, come forth, ye weak ones, come forth, ye children of shame!’ And we shall all come forth without shame and shall stand before Him. And He will say unto us, ‘Ye are swine, made in the image of the Beast and with his mark; but come ye also!’ And the wise ones and those of understanding will say, ‘O Lord, why dost Thou receive these men?’ And He will say,’This is why I receive them, O ye wise, this is why I receive them, O ye of understanding, that not one of them believed himself to be worthy of this.’ And He will hold out His hands to us and we shall fall down before Him…and we shall weep…and we shall understand all things! Then we shall understand all!…and all will understand, Katerina Ivanovna even…she will understand…Lord, Thy kingdom come!” And he sank down on the bench exhausted and helpless, looking at no one, apparently oblivious of his surroundings and plunged in deep thought. His words had created a certain impression; there was a moment of silence; but soon laughter and oaths were heard again.

 

Quotes from Sts Peter and Paul-

 

“Simon Peter answered and said, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Jesus answered and said to him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father who is in heaven.” Mt 16:16-17

 

“Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; 14 as obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance; 15 but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in allyour conduct, 16 because it is written, “Be holy, for I am holy.”

1 Peter 1:13-15

 

“For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain. “Phil. 1:21

“I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.”

                 

 

 

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