1/25 announcements

January 25, 2015
Commemoration of St. Gregory the Theologian
 
Hebrews 7:26-28; 8:1-2: We read in He­brews that priests of the New Covenant serve as representatives of the Great High Priest, Jesus Christ.
 
Luke 19:1-10:  In the story of Zaccheus we are reminded of why the Only-begotten Son of the
Father became incarnate:  to save mankind from our sin and its consequences.
 
Troparion of the Resurrection:  O compassionate One, thou didst descend from the heights; thou didst submit to the three-day burial, that thou might deliver us from passion.  Thou art our Life and our Resurrection, O Lord, glory to thee.
 
Troparion of our Holy Father, Gregory the Theologian:  The pastoral psalter of thy discourse in theology triumphed over the trumpets of orators and overcame it; for having sought the depth of the Spirit, there was also vouchsafed to thee excellence of speech, O Father Gregory.  Wherefore, intercede with Christ God to save our souls.
 
Troparion of the Chains of St. Peter: O Holy Apostle, Peter, thou dost preside over the Apostles by the precious chains which thou didst bear.  We venerate them with faith and beseech thee that by thine intercessions we be granted the great mercy.
Kontakion of the Presentation: Thou, O Christ God, who by your Birth, didst sanctify the Virgin’s womb, and as is meet, didst bless Simeon’s arms, and didst also come to save us, preserve thy fold in wars, and confirm them whom thou didst love; for thou alone art the Lover of mankind.
 
CALENDAR
 
Sunday, January 25   (Gregory the Theologian)
            8:50 a.m.         — Orthros
            9:00 a.m.         — Christian Education
            10:00 a.m.       — Divine Liturgy
            5:00 p.m.         — Young Adults
 
Monday, January 26   
            Office Closed — Father John’s Day Off
           
Tuesday, January 27   (John Chrysostom)
            6:00 a.m.         — Festal Orthros
            11:30 a.m.       — Ladies Lunch
 
Wednesday, January 28
            6:30 p.m.         — Daily Vespers
            7:30 p.m.         — Choir Practice
            7:30 p.m.         — Parish Council meeting
                                               
Thursday, January 29  
                                  
Friday, January 30   (The Three Hierarchs)
 
Saturday, January 31   (Cyros and John the Unmercenary Healers)
            5:45 p.m.         — Ninth Hour followed by Great Vespers
 
Sunday, February 1   (Sunday of the Publican and the Pharisee)
            8:50 a.m.         — Orthros
            9:00 a.m.         — Christian Education
            10:00 a.m.       — Divine Liturgy
            5:30 p.m.         — Youth Group
SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENTS
 
Eucharist Bread …was offered by Brocks for the Divine Liturgy today. 

Eucharist Bread and Coffee Hour Schedule:
                                         Eucharist Bread                  Coffee Hour
January 25                      Brock                                       Henderson/Baker/Lockhart
February 1                      Fahmy                                     Karam/Stewart/Meadows
February 2 (Mon am)   Wood                                       Kh. Sharon Meadows
February 8                      R. Root                                    POT LUCK MEAL     
                                                                                         SET-UP:  Ellis/Zouboukos/Fahmy
February 14 (Sat am)    Henderson                              
         (Saturday of the Souls – Koliva:  Abraham)
February 15                    Algood                           Pigott/Brock/Strain
February 22                    Katool                            Teens Cheesefare Fundraiser
 
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.
 
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#
January 25                         Mildred Morris                    Heb. 7:26-8:2                 334
February 1                         Phillip Lasseter                    Heb. 13:7-16                  365
February 2 (Mon am)       Kh Sharon Meadows          Heb. 7:7-17                    371
February 8                         Tom Skirtech                        I Cor. 6:12-20                 265
February 14 (Sat am)        David Turner                       I Cor. 10:23-26               271-272
February 15                       Tom Willingham                 I Cor. 8:8-9:2                  273
February 22                       Walt Wood                           Rom. 13:11-14:4            279
 
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.
 
Continue to pray for Metropolitan Paul (who is also the brother of our Patriarch) and the Syriac Archbishop John of Aleppo who were abducted while on a humanitarian mission in Syria.
 
Please continue to pray for the health of His Grace, Bishop ANTOUN.
 
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;
Walt and Charlotte Wood and their family; Tom and Jennifer Skirtech and their family; Tom and Kathy Willingham; Athena and Anthony Zouboukos and their family.
 
Congratulations to Noah and Beth Pappas (and also to grandparents, Reader Basil and Brenda Baker) on the baptism of their son Anthony this past week!
 
Calendar Items:
*    The Men of the parish meet for lunch and fellowship on the first Thursday of the month.
*    The Ladies of St. Peter will meet at 10:00 a.m. on the second Saturday of each month to pray the Akathist to the Mother of God, Nurturer of Children.  Those who are able will go out for lunch and fellowship afterwards.
*    We will celebrate the Feast of the Presentation of our Lord in the Temple with Divine Liturgy (only) on Monday morning, February 2nd, beginning at 6:00 a.m.
*    Dr. Christopher Veniamin, Professor of Patristics at St. Tikhon Seminary will be speaking at St. Peter’s February 1-4, 2015.
*    Youth Retreat at Roosevelt State Park, February 13-15th.
 
House Blessings!  A sign-up sheet is available in the Fellowship Hall to sign up for your house blessing.  You may also e-mail Father John at frjohnc@bellsouth.net with 3 dates for your blessing.  Please schedule these as soon as possible.  Everyone should have their home blessed.  However, the responsibility for scheduling lies with individuals and not with Father John.   No house blessings will be done once Great Lent starts (February 23rd this year).
 
Young Adults Study Group:  The Young Adults agreed to begin meeting twice a month.  One of these meetings will feature a teaching by Fr. John on various aspects of the Orthodox Christian faith.  Topics will include education, ethics and parenting children.  The next meeting will be Sunday, February 8th.
 
Dr. Christopher Veniamin, Professor of Patristics at St. Tikhon Seminary in South Canaan, Pennsylvania, will visit St. Peter’s February 1-4, 2015.  He will speak at our church on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday evenings at 7:00 p.m.  His topic will be “The Orthodox Understanding of Salvation.”  We are priviledged to have a man of Dr. Veniamin’s stature with us.  This promises to be a most edifying and instructive time for our church.  Please put these dates on your calendar and plan to be here.  Fliers are available on the table in the Hallway with information about Dr. Veniamin and his talks.
 
Pledge Letters will be mailed this week.  Please fill these out and return them to the office as soon as possible. Your pledges make it possible to plan a budget for the coming year.

Lower Mississippi Valley Teen Retreat:  The Teen Retreat will be February 13-15, 2015 at Roosevelt State Park.  The speaker for the retreat will be Heiromonk Benedict (Josuah Armitage).  His topic will be “Dealing with Doubts about God.”  We are very excited to have Fr. Benedict come to address this important topic with our teens!  Be sure to mark your calendars now.
 
The letters confirming your non-taxable donations for 2014 will also be mailed very shortly.  If you do not receive your letter in the mail within the next 7-10 days, please contact Kh. Sharon.
 
Fasting Discipline for January
The traditional fasting (no meat, dairy, eggs, fish, wine or oil) is observed on the remaining Wednesdays and Fridays of the month.
 
Major Commemorations for January
January 25             Gregory the Theologian
January 27             John Chrysostom
January 31             Cyros and John the Unmercenary Healers
 
Parents, please supervise your children with food in the Fellowship Hall.  We are getting stains on the new carpet (and also the chairs in the nave).
 
Happy Anniversaries in January:
         January 10             —    Bob and Georgia Buchanan (#28!)
         January 17             —    Chris and Rebecca Dansereau (#6!)
         January 19             —    Ramzi and Jean Kafoury (#12!)
 
Happy Birthdays in January:
         January 1               —    Dn. Richard Root
         January 5               —    Sarah Anne Milnor
         January 10             —    Georgia Buchanan
         January 11             —    Nicholas Henderson
         January 12             —    Cheryl Pigott
         January 13             —    Nader Dabit
         January 19             —    Saliba (Sam) Dabit
         January 20             —    Alfred Katool
         January 22             —    Tatiana Lavric
         January 24             —    Oliver Yeatts
         January 26             —    Jay Davis
         January 29             —    Michelle Pigott
         January 30             —    Chris Dansereau
 
Thermostats in the Fellowship Hall:  There are two thermostats in the Fellowship Hall—one in the main room to control the air in the main room, and a second one in the Nursery room that controls the air in all four of the Sunday School rooms.  Please be sure when you leave the building that both thermostats are set to 80 degrees in warm weather or 60 degrees in cold weather.
 
Suggestions on use of the Cry Room:
            — Please remember you’re in liturgy when you’re in the cry room.
            — Its main purpose should be a place for parents to take their children if they’re being disruptive during liturgy, staying for 5-10 minutes (or until the child is calmed down) and then returning to liturgy.
            — It should not be used as a main sitting area during the liturgy.
            — Children should not be eating snacks or watching electronic devices while in the cry room.
 
Quotable:      “You have probably heard such words as:  oral prayer, mental prayer, prayer of the heart; you may also have heard discussions about each of them separately.  What is the cause of this division of prayer into parts?  Because it happens that sometimes through our negligence the tongue recites the holy words of prayer, but the mind wanders elsewhere:  or the mind understands the words of the prayer, but the heart does not responds to them by feeling.  In the first case prayer is only oral, and is not prayer at all, in the second, mental prayer joins the oral, but this prayer is still imperfect and incomplete.  Complete and real prayer comes only when the prayer of word and thought is joined by prayer of feeling.
                       Spiritual or inner prayer comes when he who prays, after gathering his mind within his heart, from there directs his prayer to God in words no longer oral but silent:  glorifying Him and giving thanks, confessing his sins with contrition before God, and asking from Him the spiritual and physical blessings that he needs.  You must pray not only with words but with the mind, and not only with the mind but with the heart, so that the mind understands clearly what is said in words, and the heart feels what the mind is thinking.  All these combined together constitute real prayer, and if any of them are absent your prayer is either not perfect, or is not prayer at all.”
                                                St. Theophan the Recluse
                                                from The Art of Prayer compiled by Igumen Chariton of Valamo
 
Worship:         Sunday, February 1, 2015 (Sunday of the Publican and the Pharisee; Pre-
                                                Feast of the Presentation of our Lord in the Temple)
         Scripture:                                Hebrews 13:7-16; Luke 18:10-14
         Celebrant:                               Father John
         Epistle Reader:                      Phillip Lasseter
         Prosphora:                               Fahmy
         Coffee Hour:                           Karam/Stewart/Meadows

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