Monday, October 3, 2016

Feasts: Fast Free


Prayer:
Constant communication with God is imperative as believers. I ask that we pray the following prayer.

O Lord, our God, please bless the leadership of our Parish, our Parish Council, Committee Chairpersons and Members of AHEPA, Building (PDI), Capital Campaign, Coffee Hour, Daughters of Penelope, Golf Tournament, Greek Festival, Legal, Stewardship and Website Committees with a sacred desire to serve with gladness and dedicated hearts. Assign a Guardian Angel to walk before them so that they grow in faith and discernment. Multiply their efforts, sanctify their work and bless all of their endeavors. Grant them well-being and health. Grant them understanding, peace and happiness in this life to help them fulfill Your will. AMEN

Saints:

John the Chozebite, Bishop of Caesaria

Rusticus and Eleutherios the Martyrs

Dionysios the Areopagite

Reading:


This Saint was from Athens, a learned man, and a member of the famous judicial court of Mars Hill (in Greek Aeros Pagos, hence the name Areopagite (see Acts 17:19-34). When Saint Paul preached in Athens, he was one of the first there to believe in Christ, and, according to some, became the first bishop of that city. Others say -- and this may be more probable--that he was the second Bishop of Athens, after Saint Hierotheus, whom Dionysios calls his friend and teacher "after Paul" (On the Divine Names, 3:2). With Saint Hierotheus he was also present at the Dormition of the most holy Theotokos; the Doxasticon of the Aposticha for the service of the Dormition is partly taken from a passage in Chapter III of On the Divine Names. According to ancient tradition, he received a martyr's end (according to some, in Athens itself) about the year 96.

Apolytikion of Dionysios the Areopagite in the Fourth Tone

Since thou hadst been instructed in uprightness thoroughly and wast vigilant in all things, thou wast clothed with a good conscience as befitteth one holy. Thou didst draw from the Chosen Vessel ineffable mysteries; and having kept the Faith, thou didst finish a like course, O Hieromartyr Dionysios. Intercede with Christ God that our souls be saved.

Kontakion of Dionysios the Areopagite in the Plagal of the Fourth Tone

In spirit, thou dist pass through Heaven's gates, instructed by the great Apostle who attained to the third Heaven's heights, and wast made rich in all knowledge of things beyond speech; and then thou, O Dionysios, didst illuminate them that slumbered in the darkness of their ignorance. Hence we all cry out: Rejoice, O universal Father.

Epistle Reading

Acts of the Apostles 17:16-34

 
Prokeimenon. Grave Mode. 
Psalm 149.5,1

The saints shall rejoice in glory.
Verse: Sing to the Lord a new song.

IN THOSE DAYS, while Paul was waiting for them in Athens, his spirit was provoked within him as he saw that the city was full of idols. So he argued in the synagogue with the Jews and the devout persons, and in the market place every day with those who chanced to be there. Some also of the Epicurean and Stoic philosophers met him. And some said, "What would this babbler say?" Others said, "He seems to be a preacher of foreign divinities" - because he preached Jesus and the resurrection. And they took hold of him and brought him to the Areopagos, saying, "May we know what this new teaching is which you present? For you bring some strange things to our ears; we wish to know therefore what these things mean." Now all the Athenians and the foreigners who lived there spent their time in nothing except telling or hearing something new. So Paul, standing in the middle of the Areopagos, said: "Men of Athens, I perceive that in every way you are very religious. For as I passed along, and observed the objects of your worship, I found also an altar with this inscription, 'To an unknown god.' What therefore you worship as unknown, this I proclaim to you. The God who made the world and everything in it, being Lord of heaven and earth, does not live in shrines made by man, nor is he served by human hands, as though he needed anything, since he himself gives to all men life and breath and everything. And he made from one every nation of men to live on all the face of the earth, having determined allotted periods and the boundaries of their habitation, that they should seek God, in the hope that they might feel after him and find him. Yet he is not far from each one of us, for 'In him we live and move and have our being'; as even some of your poets have said, 'For we are indeed his offspring.' Being then God's offspring, we ought not to think that the Deity is like gold, or silver, or stone, a representation by the art and imagination of man. The times of ignorance God overlooked, but now he commands all men everywhere to repent, because he has fixed a day on which he will judge the world in righteousness by a man whom he has appointed, and of this he has given assurance to all men by raising him from the dead." Now when they heard of the resurrection of the dead, some mocked; but others said, "We will hear you again about this." So Paul went out from among them. But some men joined him and believed, among them Dionysios the Areopagite and a woman named Damaris and others with them.

Gospel Reading

Monday of the 3rd Week

The Gospel according to Luke 6:24-30


The Lord said to the Jews who had come to him, "But woe to you that are rich, for you have received your consolation.

"Woe to you that are full now, for you shall hunger.

"Woe to you that laugh now, for you shall mourn and weep.

"Woe to you, when all men speak well of you, for so their fathers did to the false prophets.

"But I say to you that hear, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you. To him who strikes you on the cheek, offer the other also; and from him who takes away your coat do not withhold even your shirt. Give to every one who begs from you; and of him who takes away your goods do not ask them again."

Sixth Hour Prayers
O You Who on the sixth day and hour
Nailed to the cross the sin which rebellious Adam committed in Paradise,
Tear asunder also the bond of our iniquities,
O Christ our God, and save us.

Prayer of St. Basil

God, Lord of hosts and Maker of all creation, who in Your great compassion and mercy sent down Your Only-Begotten Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, for the redemption of mankind and by His precious Cross destroyed the record of our sins, triumphing over the source and power of darkness: O Lord and Lover of mankind, accept also the thanksgiving and fervent prayers of us sinners. Deliver us from every dark and harmful transgression and from all the visible and invisible enemies that seek to destroy us. Nail our flesh to the fear of You, and do not incline our hearts to deceitful words or thoughts, but wound our souls with love for You, that always looking to You, guided by Your light, and seeing You, the eternal and ineffable Light, we may give You unceasing praise and thanksgiving: to the Father without beginning, with Your Only-Begotten Son and Your all-holy, good and life-giving Spirit, now and ever and unto ages of ages. Amen.


Fr Gary's New Year's Challenge:

Educate yourself in the Word of God. A weekday, Monday - Friday, reading guide has been prepared for the year. By sticking to this plan you will read the entire New Testament (The Gospel of Matthew through Revelation) by the end of the 2016. Milestones are easily set and marked so that you do not fall behind. Reading and knowing God’s Word is essential to Christian growth.

Message from Fr Gary

Fr Gary

Hurricane Harvey


With all the tragic events happening in our world today: hurricanes earthquakes and shootings, it is comforting to know that our Orthodox Christian Church plays an active role in the recovery efforts. As a frontliner for the IOCC (International Orthodox Christian Charities) I can be deployed for any number of catastrophes to offer emotional and spiritual care (ESC). Following our deployment we are to submit a report to identify some of the work we encountered. The following is part of my incident report. The names have been changed to protect identities.

Some of the most touching visits I had with those that had lost everything were:

● Wheelchair bound woman, approximately 55 years old. Lives in 9 story building across the street. As soon as she realized that the Brown Convention Center was opened to those displaced she came over to lend a hand. Working off very little sleep. Was very emotional and shared many, many stories and encounters. The most telling was:

She took guardianship of a (total) stranger’s children (3 kids ages 7 and younger), while this stranger went into labor to deliver her fourth child.

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