THE HOLY NEW MARTYRS AND CONFESSORS OF RUSSIA
SUNDAY OF THE PRODIGAL SON
FEBRUARY 8TH, 2015
The Holy New Martyrs are for us a great inspiration in aspiring to and keeping the Orthodox life. Within the time of the generation just passed, they showed without question that they believed what the Holy Apostle Paul says in today’s epistle from Romans, chapter 8:38 and 39. “ 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 creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Because all of what happened to them happened almost in our own time, we know that to love God above all else, with no fear of anything else, and no ultimate desire for anything else, is still possible.
That which would keep us from the desire for closeness to God comes from our own imitation of the prodigal son. When we usurp sovereignty over our Divine inheritance and spend it to fulfill only the desires of our own will, we are bound to go astray. We should use this upcoming Lenten period to return control to our Creator, in other words, like the prodigal, to repent.
Meatfare is the appellation given to this coming week because it is the last period before the Great Fast during which we are to eat beef, pork, chicken or any non-seafood flesh meat.
A Russian Blini Fundraising Agape Meal prepared by the St. Juliana Sisterhood will be served next Sunday after the Divine Liturgy. Please come and contribute generously to support the parish through the sisterhood’s activities, and get some really tasty food. A flyer will be sent out to everyone.
A talk on the Last Judgment will be given next week after the Divine Liturgy and after our fundraising Blini agape meal. Good food to support your ability to be inspired for the Fast! See the accompanying flyer.
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, how many you get, and how much you’re paying in the designated columns.
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 – This week, yet more progress was made for our plumbing needs. The water utility work needs to be done in time to allow the 2015 grant to go through. That window is closing, so keep this work for our new home in your prayers.
The Orthodox Christian Fellowship, College Park chapter, meets at 5:30 PM in the West Garden Chapel on campus for worship and Bible Study. Please keep the supporting clergy, Father Kosmas and our Father Christopher and the OCF members 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 are Don and Betty Chisholm. 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.
Visitors and Guests please sign the guest book near the church-shaped donation box, including contact information such as address, telephone and email.