September 8, 2013
Sunday before the Elevation of the Cross
Nativity of the Theotokos
The first feast of the liturgical year celebrates the birth of the Holy Virgin Mary, most blessed of women, chosen to bear God the Son, partaker in the Incarnation as the dwelling place of God. To celebrate her birth and give honor to her life is unavoidably to anticipate the coming of the Messiah and to adore His person. To remember her worthiness is to remember God’s grace. To wonder at her faith is to arouse ourselves to emulate her strength of will and her depth of trust. As we enter the cycle of the year, we turn first to honor the Holy Virgin, she who by her role in history and by her place among the saints most reminds us of the coming of the Saviour and the life He gives us, who by the Incarnation became the ladder between Heaven and Earth, who as the Mother of Christ is also the Mother of all His brethren.
Galatians 6:11-18: In the conclusion of his letter to the Galatians, St Paul reminds them that to be circumcised or uncircumcised is not the issue, but rather to be a new creation in Christ Jesus.
John 3:13-17: In the Gospel of John we hear Jesus speak concerning His purpose for coming into the world: to save mankind through His death and Resurrection.
Troparion of the Resurrection: When thou, O immortal Life, didst humble thyself unto death, then didst thou destroy death by the brightness of thy Godhead; and when thou didst raise the bowels of the earth, then all the heavenly powers exclaimed, O Christ, thou art the Giver of life! Glory to thee, O our God!
Troparion of the Nativity of the Theotokos: Thy nativity, O Theotokos, hath proclaimed joy to the whole universe; for from thee did shine forth the Sun of justice, Christ our God, annulling the curse, and bestowing the everlasting blessing, abolishing death and granting us life everlasting.
Kontakion of the Nativity of the Theotokos: By thy holy birth-giving, O pure one, Joachim and Anne were delivered from the reproach of barrenness; and Adam and Eve were delivered from the corruption of death; thy people do celebrate it, having been saved from the stain of iniquity, crying unto thee, The barren doth give birth to the Theotokos, who nourisheth our life.
Sunday, September 8 (Nativity of the Theotokos)
8:50 a.m. — Orthros
9:00 a.m. — Christian Education
10:00 a.m. — Divine Liturgy
12:00 p.m. — Pot Luck Meal
Monday, September 9 (Righteous Joachim and Anna)
Office Closed — Father John’s Day Off
Tuesday, September 10
6:00 a.m. — Daily Orthros
Wednesday, September 11
6:30 p.m. — Daily Vespers
7:30 p.m. — Choir Practice
Thursday, September 12
NO Daily Orthros
Friday, September 13 (Dedication of the Church of the Anastasis)
NO Daily Orthros
Saturday, September 14 (Elevation of the Precious Cross)
This feast is celebrated as one of the most important in the Church Year because it commemorates two events of great significance. After St. Helen had found at Jerusalem the cross upon which Christ was crucified, she built a Church on Mount Calvary to hold the precious relic. The Christians held the Holy Cross in such high regard that they soon began to celebrate this feast in honor of the finding of the Cross.
In the year 614, the Persians invaded the Empire and took Jerusalem, and sent the case containing the Cross back to their country. For fifteen years the Greek Emperor Heraclius waged war against the Persians, and finally in 629 defeated them, forcing them to make peace, and to restore the Holy Cross to him. It is said that the case containing the sacred relics was returned to him with the seals still unbroken. The Relics were replaced in the Church with great rejoicing, and to the original Feast in honor of the finding of the Cross was added another, in honor of its safe return to Jerusalem.
A special feature of the Church Services on this day, is the procession in which the Cross is borne aloft on a tray of flowers and placed in the midst of the Church; the Priest then elevates it to the four corners of the compass, blessing thrice with it as he does so, and praying that God will protect and preserve the President and the Civil Authorities of our country and the Armed Forces, and guard and guide the Hierarchs and clergy of the Church, and protect and preserve all His faithful people from every evil.
9:00 a.m. — Orthros followed by Divine Liturgy
5:45 p.m. — Ninth Hour followed by Great Vespers
Sunday, September 15 (Sunday after the Elevation of the Cross)
8:50 a.m. — Orthros
9:00 a.m. — Christian Education
10:00 a.m. — Divine Liturgy
5:30 p.m. — Youth Group
Eucharist Bread …was offered by the Davises for the Divine Liturgy this morning.
Please be reminded of the following:
Be very careful with the Blessed Bread when you take it after communion. Because this bread has been blessed, we should take care not to let crumbs fall on the floor. Parents, especially, please help your children to choose a small piece and treat it carefully.
Also, at the end of the liturgy, maintain a prayerful disposition during the veneration of the cross as the prayers of thanksgiving after communion are still underway. Please exchange your greetings with each other in the Fellowship Hall during Coffee Hour.
Eucharist Bread and Coffee Hour Schedule:
Eucharist Bread Coffee Hour
September 8 Davis POT LUCK MEAL
(Feast of the Nativity of the Theotokos) (Set-up: Fahmy/Brock/Pigott)
September 14 (Sat. a.m.) D. Root
(Feast of the Exaltation of the Cross)
September 15 Yeatts Skirtech/Skirtech/Parker
September 22 Abraham D. Root/Dansereau/Dale Cooper
September 29 Meadows Algood/Yeatts/Lasseter
Schedule for Epistle Readers – Page numbers refer to the Apostolos (book of the Epistles) located on the front pew. Please be sure to use this book when you read.
Reader Reading Page#
September 8 S. Charlotte Algood Gal. 6:11-18 198
September 14 (Sat. a.m.) Kh. Sharon Meadows I Cor. 1:18-24 311-312
September 15 Warren Strain Gal. 2:16-20 193
September 22 Mildred Morris I Cor. 16:13-24 152
September 29 Phillip Lasseter II Cor. 1:21-2:1-4 158
Please remember Fr. Joseph and Kh. Joanna Bittle, and their daughter Abigail, in your prayers.
Please remember the following in your prayers: Steve, Sheryl and Stephen Chamblee; Amy and Brantley Oliver; Aidan Milnor, the Milnor family; Sam and Lamia Dabit and Sammie; Georgia Buchanan, George Johns (Georgia’s grandson) and his family; Mary Greene (Lee and Kh. Sharon’s sister); Fr. Stephen Tewfik; Sh. Gail Shannon; Dn. Sidney and Sh. Mary Elliot;
Fr. Alexander Atty, the Dean of St. Thikon’s who is battling cancer.
Please keep Tom Willingham and his wife Kathy in your prayers. Tom is home from the hospital and continuing to recover following abdominal surgery to remove a tumor.
Continue to pray for Metropolitan Paul (who is also the brother of our Patriarch) and the Syriac Archbishop John of Aleppo who were abducted recently while on a humanitarian mission in Syria.
Please continue to pray for the health of His Grace, Bishop ANTOUN.
Please be reminded that the Sacristy/Vestry which is adjacent to and behind the altar in our church is considered by the Orthodox Church to be part of the Sanctuary (Altar area) and should not be entered without the blessing of the priest for a specific purpose. If you need to speak with a member of the clergy while they are in the Sanctuary, please ask them to come to you in the nave.
Our condolences go to Amy Surratt on the falling asleep of her mother, Becky Ballard, last week. Please keep them in your prayers.
Sam Habeeb will be heading up Christian Education and will be serving on the Parish Council as well. Many thanks to Sh. Charlotte Algood for her years of service with the Christian Education program.
Christian education has resumed. Parents please be sure to have your children arrive on time. Also, we are in need of volunteers to help with the Pre-school Group. If you would like to help with this, please get in touch with Sam Habeeb.
Bible Study with Breakfast will resume on Saturday morning, October 5th from 7:30-9:00 a.m.
* The Men of the parish meet for lunch and fellowship on the first Thursday of the month.
* We will celebrate the Feast of the Elevation of the Precious Cross with Orthros followed by Divine Liturgy next Saturday morning, beginning at 9:00 a.m.
* The Ladies of St. Peter will have a fundraiser on Sunday, September 29th to replenish funds used for charitable activities. They will be auctioning off casseroles and baked goods during Coffee Hour that Sunday.
Canned food drive: The Christian Education classes will once again be collecting canned good s for the needy.
Fall Festival: We have tentatively set a date for this year’s Fall festival on Saturday, October 26th. However, this is contingent upon a volunteer or volunteers to head up the festival. If you are interested in helping to plan this, please let Father John know.
Camping trip for Youth Group: A camping trip to Louisville is planned for the Teens on Friday and Saturday, November 1-2. (Rain date will be November 8-9).
Directory Update: Please add the following to your Directories:
Summer and Isabelle Goss
252 Marilyn Drive
Pearl, MS 39208
Happy Birthdays in September:
September 3 — Lee Greene
— Hannah Strange (#7!)
— Geraldine Quirk
September 4 — Fr. John Henderson
September 8 — Nikki Lasseter
September 9 — Rebecca Dansereau
September 10 — Dorin Lavric
September 12 — Alvin Buckles
September 15 — Lynda Costas
September 17 — Jeffrey Schelver
September 18 — Carolina Lavric
September 25 — Rick Carlton
September 27 — Jeffrey Schelver
September 30 — Laura Yeatts
Fasting Discipline for September
The traditional fasting (no meat, dairy, fish, wine or oil) is observed all Wednesdays and Fridays of the month. September 14th is also a strict fast day in remembrance of the Elevation of the Holy Cross.
Major Commemorations for September
September 8 Nativity of the Thetokos
September 9 Righteous Joachim and Anna
September 13 Dedication of the Church of the Anastasis
September 14 Elevation of the Holy Cross
September 23 Conception of the Forerunner
September 24 Proto-martyr Thekla
September 26 Apostle John the Theologian (repose)
September 28 Venerable Chariton
Happy Anniversaries in September:
September 4 — Ben and Jenna Skirtech (#12!)
September 6 — Richard and Vickie Curtis (#27!)
September 15 — Tom and Kathy Willingham (#23!)
September 26 — Rod and Emily Parker (#9!)
Quotable: “Prayer said by the lips without the attention of the mind is nothing“
“We should do well to apply to ourselves the words of St. Paul to the Corinthians. What use is it to you, O Corinthians (so he writes), if you pray only with the voice, while your mind pays no attention to the prayer but dreams about something else? What profit is there if the tongue says much but the mind does not think about what is said, even if you pronounce very many words? What profit is there if you should sing in full voice, and with all the strength of your lungs, while your mind does not stand before God and does not see Him, but wanders away in thought to some other place? Such a prayer will bring you no profit. It will not be heard by God but will remain fruitless. Well did St. Cyprian judge when he said: ‘How can you expect to be heard by God, when you do not hear yourself? How do you expect God to remember you when your pray, if you do not remember yourself?'”
The Art of Prayer; an Orthodox Anthology compiled by Igumen Chariton of Valamo
Worship: Sunday, September 15, 2013 (Sunday after the Elevation of the Cross)
Scripture: Galatians 2:16-20; Mark 8:34-9:1
Celebrant: Father John
Epistle Reader: Warren Strain
Coffee Hour: Skirtech/Skirtech/Parker