Parish Bulletin – Holy Pentecost, 2013
FEAST OF THE HOLY TRINITY
John 7:37-52, 8:12
Choir Director: Veronika
We welcome you to the Orthodox Church. Please feel at ease and free to participate in the singing. As a visitor you are welcome to come forward at the conclusion of the Divine Liturgy and venerate the Cross offered by the priest. Additionally you may receive the blessed bread (Antidoron) that is offered at that time. If you have questions or would like further information, the priest or one of the members of the parish will be pleased to help.
A word to our visitors on Holy Communion
The Orthodox Church does not practice open Communion. Therefore, only members of Canonical Orthodox Churches exercising jurisdiction in America may approach the Chalice for Holy Communion. The Orthodox do not regard Holy Communion solely as an act of personal piety, but also as an expression of union with the Orthodox Church’s faith, doctrine, and discipline. Orthodox visitors wishing to receive Holy Communion should make their intention known to the priest in advance — ask any member of the parish for help in relaying your intention to the priest. Orthodox Christians should prepare themselves to receive the Sacrament of Holy Communion through recent Confession, prayers of preparation for Holy Communion, and fasting (at minimum, from midnight before receiving).
“Whoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in a an unworthy manner will be guilty of profaning the body and blood of the Lord.” – I Corinthians 11:27
TROPARIA AND KONTAKIA
Troparion for Pentecost, in Tone VIII:
Blessed art Thou O Christ our God / Who hast revealed the fishermen as most wise, / by sending down upon them the Holy Spirit. / Through them Thou didst draw the world into Thy net, // O Lover of man, glory to Thee.
Kontakion for Pentecost, in Tone VIII:
When the Most High came down and confused the tongues / He divided the nations; / but when He distributed the tongues of fire, He called all to unity. / Therefore, with one voice, we glorify the All-Holy Spirit.
Opportunities to give:
➢ Food donations to the Ashland Food Project
➢ Please help by donating towards the purchase of air condition units for the church!
- Please sign up for coffee fellowship/kitchen cleanup.
- “Introduction to Orthodoxy” class on Wednesday, following Vespers.
- Our parish Patronal Feast will be Saturday, July 13. Vigil will take place the night before (Friday, July 12), with Liturgy on Saturday morning, followed by a barbeque picnic. Mark your calendars now!
- Liturgy for Ss. Peter and Paul on Saturday, 8.00 AM.
- Williams Baptism on Saturday, 4.00 PM.
Service Schedule this Week:
Wednesday – 6.00 pm, Vespers
Thursday – 6.40 am, Hours, Divine Liturgy
Saturday – 8.00 am, Divine Liturgy (Ss. Peter and Paul), 6.00 pm, Great Vespers
Sunday – 8.30 am, Akathist, Hours, Divine Liturgy
Confession after Vespers or by appointment!
Other Activities Next Week:
- Saturday, 4.00 PM – Williams Baptism
Kneeling Vespers of Pentecost
The liturgical peculiarity of Pentecost is a very special Vespers of the day itself. Usually this service follows immediately the Divine Liturgy, is “added” to it as its own fulfillment. The service begins as a solemn “summing up” of the entire celebration, as its liturgical synthesis. We hold flowers in our hands symbolizing the joy of the eternal spring, inaugurated by the coming of the Holy Spirit. After the festal Entrance, this joy reaches its climax in the singing of the Great Prokeimenon:
“Who is so great a God as our God?”
Then, having reached this climax, we are invited to kneel. This is our first kneeling since Pascha. It signifies that after these fifty days of Paschal joy and fulness, of experiencing the Kingdom of God, the Church now is about to begin her pilgrimage through time and history. It is evening again, and the night approaches, during which temptations and failures await us, when, more than anything else, we need Divine help, that presence and power of the Holy Spirit, who has already revealed to us the joyful End, who now will help us in our effort towards fulfillment and salvation.
All this is revealed in the three prayers which the celebrant reads now as we all kneel and listen to him. In the first prayer, we bring to God our repentance, our increased appeal for forgiveness of sins, the first condition for entering into the Kingdom of God.
In the second prayer, we ask the Holy Spirit to help us, to teach us to pray and to follow the true path in the dark and difficult night of our earthly existence. Finally, in the third prayer, we remember all those who have achieved their earthly journey, but who are united with us in the eternal God of Love.
The joy of Pascha has been completed and we again have to wait for the dawn of the Eternal Day. Yet, knowing our weakness, humbling ourselves by kneeling, we also know the joy and the power of the Holy Spirit who has come. We know that God is with us, that in Him is our victory.
Thus is completed the feast of Pentecost and we enter “the ordinary time” of the year. Yet, every Sunday now will be called “after Pentecost”—and this means that it is from the power and light of these fifty days that we shall receive our own power, the Divine help in our daily struggle. At Pentecost we decorate our churches with flowers and green branches—for the Church “never grows old, but is always young.” It is an evergreen, ever-living Tree of grace and life, of joy and comfort. For the Holy Spirit—“the Treasury of Blessings and Giver of Life—comes and abides in us, and cleanses us from all impurity,” and fills our life with meaning, love, faith and hope.
– Fr. Alexander Schmemann
When Others Speak Evil of Us
Our good name is very important for us in life. “A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches”, says the wise Solomon (Prov. 22:1). So what should we do when other people deprive us of our good name?
- First of all, no matter how bad and how injurious the evil talk spread about us may be, we must guard ourselves from anger, verbal abuse, and revenge, but remain as placid as possible in spirit, because we all must be of one spirit with Christ, and Christ, in the face of all accusations, remained in a placid, not in the least bit vengeful, spirit. Christ, “when he was reviled, reviled not again…”, the holy Apostle Peter says (1 Pet. 2:23).
- When you hear that others are speaking badly of you and ascribing to you vices of various sorts, bad intentions, and so forth, then immediately subject yourself to the strictest examination to see whether the vices they ascribe to you are really there…. Examine yourself very closely: don’t those vices actually lurk within you, if only to a small degree? Isn’t there pride, falsehood, and so on? Other people’s eyes often see our conduct much better and more reliably than our own do, because every person has a certain amount of pride, and pride always conceals us from ourselves. Thus, we can rarely see ourselves accurately… If impartial examination of yourself shows you that others reproach you even the least bit justly, then quickly offer repentance, fervently pray to the Lord God to deliver you from that vice, try zealously to correct yourself of it, and then everywhere show the utmost sincere friendly disposition and gratitude towards the one who spoke evil of you, regardless of his intentions, because without his reproach you perhaps would never have seen your vices.
- If, after the most attentive, impartial examination of yourself, you find that the vices ascribed to you do not exist, you may legitimately defend yourself and refute the slander leveled at you, but only when finding this necessary, not because of your self-love or pride but because of your position. But defend yourself calmly, without anger or indignation. Jesus Christ Himself acted thus…
- If you see that defending yourself will not do you any good, then:
- Try to bear the slander leveled at you with patience, and console yourself with the thought: “God sees my innocence… He will declare my innocence at the Dread Judgment at least.”
- Console yourself even more with the thought of how our Lord endured everything with equanimity, and never justified Himself in any court.
- Double your efforts to conduct yourself as irreproachably as possible in all circumstances of your life.
- If the evil talk spread about you does not cease, or even multiplies, then resort to nothing but fervent prayer that the Lord God may have the kindness to enlighten and correct your slanderers. Act this way because Jesus Christ Himself acted this way even with his executioners. (Lk.23:34).
– Metr. Gregory of St. Petersburg (d. 1860): “How to Live a Holy Life”
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