THE SECOND SUNDAY OF THE GREAT FAST
ST. GREGORY PALAMAS
MARCH 8TH, 2015
Our Father among the Saints, Gregory Palamas defended Orthodox monastic practice and prayer. Attackers would deny the possibility that God would grant perception of Himself to people of intense prayer. Contrary to these attackers, we have many witnesses. Holy Prophet Moses saw the glory of God on Sinai. Holy Prophet Isaiah saw the glory of God in the temple. The Holy Apostles saw the glory of the transfigured Lord on Tabor. On the basis of these and other testimonies, St. Gregory proclaimed the witness of the holy Hesychasts to the glory of God’s energies, like what the Apostles witnessed at the Transfiguration. We have all this to put together in our minds with the promise of our Lord at the end of the Gospel of Matthew to be with us always till the end of the world, and His promise to be with us tangibly in His Body and Blood in Holy Communion. This is our Faith. We can hold it because of his love for us demonstrated on more ways than we can number.
The Orthodox Christian Fellowship, College Park chapter, meets at 5:30 PM Tuesday in the West Garden Chapel on campus for Lenten worship and Bible Study. Please keep the supporting clergy, Father Kosmas and our Father Christopher and the OCF members in your prayers.
Elizabeth Chisholm Reposed in the Lord this morning at 7 AM. Betty was with us at Holy Apostles from the beginning. She and her husband Don settled in Riderwood and have been there since. Betty supported the parish and attended services regularly as long she could. She was and is part of the tapestry of our parish life. We will serve her funeral at 7 PM Tuesday evening. A reception will follow the funeral during which we may share our memories and meet her family. “In a blessed falling asleep, grant, O Lord, eternal rest unto they newly translated handmaiden Elizabeth, and make her memory to be eternal.
The Liturgy of the Presanctified Gifts will be celebrated this Wednesday evening at 6:30 PM. Anyone who has prepared for and partaken of Holy Communion this weekend may partake, without repeating confession, of the Presanctified Gifts at this service.
Metropolitan Jonah and Archpriest John Townsend will both be with us this coming weekend for the Holy Cross, Father John from Saturday and Vladyka on Sunday. Father John and I will go together to the Clergy Lenten retreat in New Jersey, Monday the 16th through Wednesday the 18th. Please get in touch with Fr. Christopher for any pastoral needs during those days.
The Baptism of Charlotte Anne Johnson, God willing, will take place next Saturday morning at 10 AM. Since Father John will be here and is the spiritual mentor of all concerned, he will perform the Baptism. The Godparents are Joel and Paraskeva. All please come who can.
Lent-Keeping Material Offerings – as in past fasting periods, the Kalvesmaki’s (Joel and Marie-Ophelia) have prepared home roasted coffee for us of various flavors. Please take advantage of this for getting some really good coffee and supporting the church through your purchase. In addition to the coffee sales, the St. Juliana Sisterhood will hold a bake sale two weeks from today, Sunday, March 22nd (the Holy 40 Martyrs of Sebaste). We plan to have both Lenten goods for immediate use and post-Lenten treats (to be frozen until Pascha). The list of items for sale is being completed and you will be updated through all the avenues: Face book, emails and at last a flyer.
Justin and Ruth Loss have moved to Tennessee. Last Sunday was their last regular Sunday with us, although we hope to see them and hear from them from time to time. As promised, here is their contact info.
Justin and Ruth Loss
416 Rule Street
Maryville, TN 37804-3232
Orthodox Christians! – Make a Financial Pledge and Become a Member of Holy Apostles Orthodox Church – Please take a membership form from the tract rack in the back and make a pledge of financial support. The tithe, or 10% of income, is the Biblical foundation of giving and is recommended. This benefits both the parish and the giver. Please consult a pamphlet on this subject, also available in the back. God will bless you for your gift. Experience of regular and generous givers has shown that God does not leave bereft those devoted to Him, not even materially. The leap of Faith must be made.
Help with your parish’s accounting – There is a columned sheet to record purchases behind the candle stand. When you buy candles or prosphora or anything else, write down what it is, the quantity, and how much you’re paying in the designated columns.
Our sink does not have a disposal so please don’t let food go down the drain. Timeliness, the Key to the Treasure House – Any aware Orthodox person can tell us that Orthodox worship enters into the life of God wherein time is very much a variable. However, it is a corollary that we live and worship in time. Therefore, our services are at certain times. And our services are so packed with spiritual richness that to get all that God has for us in them, we should be at them, on time. Things can unavoidably impede, but among those things should not be our lack of attention to time. God bless us with everything that is here for us and for us with each other, at the times set for us. Behold, now is the accepted time.”
Vigils are Vital – Central to our Russian tradition is the Vigil service the evening before Divine Liturgy. Vigils are a primary source of our Faith and Tradition. After the Divine Liturgy, the Vigil is the important time for corporate prayer. Vigil is also a standard time for the mystery of repentance and confession. The vigil is analogous to the “pillar of fire” to guide us through the night of this life. While attendance requires planning and may entail inconvenience, it will do you and all of us good.
Chapel News – Due to impediments in the relationship with WSSC, the pursuit of water and sewer service to the chapel will be curtailed for now. We await the outcome of our grant application for 2015 for which we have been provisionally granted $45,000. Please keep our pursuit of development of God’s great gift to us in your prayers.
Father Moses Berry – Matushka Magdalena, one of our oldest friends, has told us that her husband Father Moses is in need of a kidney transplant. Please keep Father and his family in your prayers.
Our Shut-Ins – In the Arbor Ridge nursing-rehabilitation facility at Riderwood is Don Chisholm, bereaved husband of our long-time parishioner Betty. Arbor Ridge is just inside the Riderwood entrance by Calverton Shopping Center. Also keep in prayer Genevieve Waters.
Meal Signups – Sign up to make a meal for all after Divine Liturgy.
Nick’s Place – Non-perishable goods go to this halfway house for young men recovering from substance abuse. The orange bin is by the closet.
Holy Apostles Chariots is our “ride-to-church” service. See Reader Kyrill Shillen.
The Choir – Rehearsals are from 7 to 9 PM on Thursdays. See Nicholas Baumann.
The St. Juliana of Lazarevo Sisterhood sees to various needs of the parish. See Olga Postnikova.
Items for Purchase and Other Ways to Support Holy Apostles
A Commemorative Tile made by John Hume, has our name, the verse, “I was glad when they said unto me: Let us go into the house of the Lord,” and a front view of the chapel. One can be had for $45. Use it as a reminder for mutual prayer.
2015 calendars are available for a donation of $7.00. Keep up with the feasts, fasts, and daily Scripture readings.
We accept credit cards! We have a card reader that works with smart phones, so, get with the treasurer (or designee), to make donations and purchases.
We have an on-line mall service from the eScrip program. The Building Fund page of our web site has a link and instructions for use. For things bought through eScrip, merchants donate small referral bonuses to our building fund. Please use this method for your on-line shopping. Please see our treasurer, Mariya Petrenko for more information.
Hate doing taxes but love the Church? – Here’s a win-win solution. Our parishioner Abraham (Abie) Alexander has volunteered to prepare your tax returns and file them on your behalf and donate all the fees you pay (less any out-of-pocket payments he may have to make for electronic filing) to our Building Fund. This is a wonderful way to contribute to the Church while at the same time paying your taxes on time (and getting early refunds!) Abraham passed the qualifying exams this month to be an Enrolled Agent to practice before the IRS but even while the process of registration is on he can assist you with the preparation and filing of tax returns.
Another way to contribute to the Building Fund – As you may already know, Abraham has offered to contribute the entire net proceeds from the sale of his book For the Love of Armine (in English, Russian, and Armenian) to the
Church’s Building Fund. Many of you have already purchased the book from Abraham. If you haven’t bought it yet, he still has a few printed copies for sale. If you purchase it online from Kindle please let him know so he can donate what you pay to the Building fund. (Kindle does not inform him of the identity of the buyers and he has no way of knowing if any of our parishioners purchased the Kindle edition.) The novel has references to Orthodoxy (one of the protagonists returns to the faith) and our own Church also finds mention obliquely in the book.
Visitors and Guests please sign the guest book near the church-shaped donation box, including contact information such as address, telephone and email.