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January 24, 2016

Thirty-first Sunday after Pentecost

I Timothy 1:15-17: St. Paul tells us how the Lord Jesus Christ had mercy on him in order to dem­onstrate the richness of His mercy towards sinners.

Luke 18:35-43: In our reading from Luke we see the Lord’s mercy toward those who have faith as He restores the sight of a blind man on the road to Jericho.

Troparion of the Resurrection: The stone being sealed by the Jews, and thy pure body being guarded by the soldiers, thou didst arise on the third day, O Saviour, granting life to the world. Wherefore, the heavenly powers acclaimed thee, O Giver of life, crying, Glory to thy Resurrection, O Christ! Glory to thy kingdom! Glory to thy gracious providence, O only Lover of mankind.

Troparion of St. Xenia of St. Petersburg: In thee, O wandering stranger, Christ the Lord hath given us an ardent intercessor for our kind. For having received in thy life sufferings and grief and served God and men with love, thou didst acquire great boldness. Wherefore, we fervently hasten to thee in temptations and grief, crying out from the depths of our hearts: Put not our hope to shame, O Blessed Xenia.

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 24 (Thirty-first Sunday after Pentecost)

8:50 a.m. — Orthros

9:00 a.m. — Christian Education

10:00 a.m. — Divine Liturgy

Monday, January 25 (Gregory the Theologian)

Office Closed — Father John’s Day Off

Tuesday, January 26

6:00 a.m. — Daily Orthros

11:30 a.m. — Ladies Lunch

Wednesday, January 27 (John Chrysostom)

6:30 p.m. — Daily Vespers

7:15 p.m. — Choir Practice

7:30 p.m. — Parish Council Meeting

Thursday, January 28

6:00 a.m. — Daily Orthros

Friday, January 29

Saturday, January 30 (The Three Hierarchs)

5:45 p.m. — Ninth Hour followed by Great Vespers

Sunday, January 31 (Thirty-second Sunday after Pentecost)

8:50 a.m. — Orthros

9:00 a.m. — Christian Education

10:00 a.m. — Divine Liturgy

SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENTS

Eucharist Bread …was offered by the Meadows for the Divine Liturgy this morning.

Eucharist Bread and Coffee Hour Schedule:

Eucharist Bread Coffee Hour

January 24 Meadows R. Root/Habeeb

January 31 Davis Schelver/Lavric/Turner

February 1 (Mon. p.m.) D. Root (Artoklasia Bread)

Feast of the Presentation of our Lord in the Temple

February 7 Karam Henderson/Baker/Lockhart

February 14 Brock POT LUCK MEAL

(set-up: Karam/Stewart/Meadows)

February 21 Fahmy Ellis/Zouboukos/Fahmy

February 28 Baker Pigott/Strain/Osborne

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 24 Warren Strain I Tim. 1:15-17 245

January 31 Mildred Morris I Tim. 4:9-15 252

February 7 Phillip Lasseter II Cor. 6:1-10 168

February 14 Kh. Be’Be’ Schelver II Cor. 6:16-7:1 173

February 21 Brenda Baker II Tim. 3:10-15 258

February 28 David Turner I Cor. 6:12-20 265

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.

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.

Please continue to pray for the health of His Grace, Bishop ANTOUN.

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 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; Elias and Olga Karam (Simon’s parents) as well as Simon and Rola Karam; Lynda Costas.

Our condolences and prayers go to Natalia Alaeetawi and her family on the unexpected death of her mother, Galina, this past week. We will be doing a Memorial Service this morning in her memory.

To insure that each family has access to the weekly bulletins, please pick up only 1 bulletin per family. We’ve run short recently and want to be sure that everyone has access to the church bulletins.

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 the 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.

* The men of the parish will meet at the church once each quarter for a Saturday morning Father-Son Prayer Breakfast. The next Breakfast will be February 6th.

* We will celebrate the Feast of the Presentation of our Lord in the Temple with Great Vespers with Liltia and Artoklasia on Monday evening, February 1st, beginning at 6:30 p.m.

* The Deanery Youth Retreat is scheduled for February 12-14, 2016 at Camp Hopewell, outside of Oxford. More information TBA.

* Fr. John Oliver will be our Pre-Lenten speaker March 1-3. Mark your calendars now!

Camping Registration and Scholarships: We have received the scholarship forms for the Archdiocese camps. If you need assistance, please contact Fr. John. We have also received word that registration is NOW open for Camp St. Thekla. If your children plan to attend one of their sessions, it will be important to register as soon as possible to be sure that there is room for them.

Father John will be out the following dates:

January 21-24 in Jacksonville for the Delegates Meeting, and

January 29-31 in Murphreeboro, TN for the Blessing of the new building for St. Elizabeth the New Martyr Orthodox Church and for the Elevation of their pastor, Fr. John Oliver, to Archpriest.

February 22-29

If you need a priest during these times, please contact Fr. Leo or Fr. James.

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 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 (March 14th this year).

Pledge Letters have been mailed. Please return these as soon as possible so that we can make plans for the coming year. If you did not receive one, please let Kh. Sharon know.

Bethany Christian Services is a new medical clinic opening across the street from the abortion clinic in Jackson. Their mission is to provide medical services and options for women who choose to not have an abortion. They are looking for volunteers to help with the tasks of running the clinic. They are especially interested in volunteers who have some medical training. If you have some time and would like to help with this worthy cause, please contact Barbara Beavers at 601-366-4282.

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

Supper Clubs: A Sign-up sheet has been placed on the table in the Fellowship Hall for anyone wishing to participate in Supper Club this year.

Pre-Lenten Speaker: Rev. Fr. John Oliver, pastor of St. Elizabeth the New Martyr Antiochian Orthodox Church in Murphreesboro, TN, will be peaking at St. Peter March 1-3, 2016. His topic will be “Our Dark Emotions in the Light of Christ.” Be sure to mark your calendars now.

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.

Quotable: “Yet, as long as we are held captive by our passions, which distract our mind from our heart and lure it into the ever-changing and vain world of natural and created things, thus depriving us of all spiritual strength, we will not know the new birth from on High that makes us children of God and gods by grace. In fact, in one way or another, we are all ‘prodigal sons’ of our Father in heaven, because, as the Scriptures testify, ‘All have sinned, and come short of the glory of God’ (Rom. 3:23). Sin has separated our mind from the life-giving contemplation of God and led it into a ‘far country’ (Luke 9:15). In this ‘far country’ we have been deprived of the honour of our Father’s embrace and, in feeding swine, we have been made subject to demons. We gave ourselves over to dishonourable passions and the dreadful famine of sin, which then established itself by force, becoming the law of our members. But now we must come out of this godless hell and return to our Father’s house, so as to uproot the law of sin that is within us and allow the law of Christ’s commandments to dwell in our heart. For the only path leading out of the torments of hell to the everlasting joy of the Kingdom is that of the divine commandments: with our whole being we are to love God and our neighbor with a heart that is free of all sin.”

The Hidden Man of the Heart

by Archimandrite Zacharias

Worship: Sunday, January 31, 2016 (Thirty-second Sunday after Pentecost)

Scripture: I Timothy 4:9-15; Luke 19:1-10

Celebrant: Father John

Epistle Reader: Mildred Morris

Prosphora: Davis

Coffee Hour: Schelver/Lavric/Turner