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June 5, 2016

Sunday of the Blindman

Today is the Sunday of the Blind Man. Though the Gospel account of the healing of the blind man touches many subjects, there is but one theme: Christ is the divine Light which illuminates the hearts of those who behold Him in faith. Despite the intimidation of the authorities, despite the confusion of the people who know him, despite the fear of his parents, the blind man given sight refuses to deny what he knows is the truth: Jesus has given him sight, has healed the affliction he has born from birth, and one who does such good is from God. To deny his healer is to deny the truth, and he prefers persecution and rejection to that denial. More than his eyes have been opened; his heart has been opened to true and eternal Light. As were the Israelites cast into the dark despair of his fear, as are we all blinded by the frustration of sin and of our weakness, so this man was trapped by his closed eyes; and, as may all be, he was freed by the coming of the Messiah. In faith we open our eyes to the radiant glory of our Lord and King.

Acts 16:16-34: In our reading from Acts we see Paul and Silas imprisoned unjustly; but the Lord uses the circumstances to bring the jailer to Himself by means of a dramatic rescue.

John 9:1-38: After Jesus heals a man born blind, we see the hypocrisy and unbelief of the Pharisees as they seek to learn how the man came to see. After being put out of the temple, the formerly blind man again encounters Jesus, whom he worships as his savior.

Troparion of the Resurrection: Let us believers praise and worship the Word, co-eternal with the Father and the Spirit, born of the Virgin for our salvation; for he took pleasure in ascending the Cross in the flesh, to suffer death, and to raise the dead by his glorious Resurrection.

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 Pascha: When Thou didst descend into the grave, O Immortal, Thou didst destroy the power of Hades. In victory didst Thou arise, O Christ God, proclaiming ARejoice@ to the myrrh-bearing women, granting peace to Thine apostles and bestowing resurrection on the fallen.


Sunday, June 5 (Sunday of the Blindman)

8:50 a.m. — Orthros

10:00 a.m. — Divine Liturgy

Monday, June 6

Office Closed — Father John’s Day Off

Tuesday, June 7

6:00 a.m. — Daily Orthros

Wednesday, June 8 (Theodore the General)

6:00 p.m. — Orthros followed by Divine Liturgy

Thursday, June 9 (Ascension)

The fortieth day after Easter is the day of the Ascension, the liturgical end to the celebration of the Resurrection and the opening of the season observing the glory of the Messiah. This is a day too often associated with the sadness of departure; yet this day brought great joy to the Disciples. They saw not the departure of one dear to them, but the glorious entry of their King to His heavenly throne. They saw not the loss of their Intercessor, but the Father accepting the eternal sacrifice and blessing the completion of man’s salvation. They saw not their separation from Christ but their assumption with Him into glory through the Incarnation. They saw not the removal of the blessed One but the promise from Him of further blessings. This day is another step in our procession into eternity, a remembrance of heavenly things, a reminder that the essence of our lives is the heavenly, a refreshing of the image of our God in all His glory.

NO Daily Orthros

Friday, June 10

Saturday, June 11

10:00 a.m. — Ladies meet for Akathist

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

Sunday, June 12 (Sunday of the Holy Fathers of Nicea)

8:50 a.m. — Orthros

10:00 a.m. — Divine Liturgy


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

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.

Eucharist Bread and Coffee Hour Schedule:

Eucharist Bread Coffee Hour

June 5 Algood R. Root/Habeeb

June 8 (Wed. p.m.) Katool Mary Guy Lockhart

June 12 Schelver Schelver/Lavric/Turner

June 19 Morris POT LUCK MEAL

(Feast of Pentecost) Set-up: Kh. Be’Be’ Schelver

June 26 Jones Henderson/Baker/Lockhart

June 28 (Tues. p.m.) Meadows Karen Cooper

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#

June 5 David Turner Acts 16:16-34 58

June 8 (Wed. p.m.) Sh. Charlotte Algood Acts 1:1-8 63

June 12 Walt Wood Acts 20:16-18, 28-36 66

June 19 Warren Strain Acts 2:1-11 77

June 26 Mildred Morris Heb. 11:33-12:2 84

June 28 (Tues. p.m.) Kh. Sharon Meadows II Cor. 11:21-33, 12:6-9 389

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 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 remember the following in your prayers: Steve, Sheryl and Stephen Chamblee; 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; Walt and Charlotte Wood and their family; Lynda Costas; Kevin and Angelina Speier; Tom and Kathy Willingham; Demitrius Zouboukos; Fr. James and Kh. Sharon and their family.

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.

Fr. John is recovering from knee surgery. For the next few days, please call Fr. Leo or Fr. James if you need a priest.

Please keep Fr. James and Kh. Sharon and their family in your prayers. Fr. James will be having surgery next Wednesday, June 8th.

Please keep Phillip, Nikki and Titus Lasseter in your prayers as Phillip is seeking the Metropolitan’s blessing to attend seminary in the fall.

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.

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

* The Feast of the Ascension will be celebrated with Orthros followed by Divine Liturgy on Wednesday evening, June 8th, beginning at 6:00 p.m.

* Vacation Church School will be held July 14th – 16th.

* The remaining dates for serving at the Stewpot Ministries this year are September 17th and November 26th.

* His Grace, Bishop THOMAS will be with us August 12-15th. Be sure to mark your calendars now.

Burial Plots at Natchez Trace Cemetery: Mr. Michael Hudgins, the Director of the Natchez Trace Funeral Home has made a very generous offer to the members of St. Peter who wish to purchase a burial plot and pre-arrange their funeral needs. The offer will expire at the end of 2016. Copies of Mr. Hudgins letter may be found on the information table in the Fellowship Hall. If you are interested in this offer, please contact Mr. Hudgins for an appointment. (We will not have another meeting of the parish as previously announced.)

Parish Life Conference: This year’s PLC will be hosted by St. Andrew the Apostle in Pensacola, FL, from June 15-18. Registration and information about the hotel is available on the Antiochian website. Please make plans to support our sister parish in their efforts.

Pentecost Feast: We will have a set menu (Southern lunch) pot luck following the Divine Liturgy on Sunday, June 19th. There is a sign-up sheet in the Fellowship Hall. Anyone wanting to bring outdoor games is encouraged to do so!

Supper Club!! Supper Club is not dead—merely delayed. If you wish to participate, please sign the list located on the information table in the hallway.

Fasting Discipline for June

The traditional fasting discipline (no meat, dairy, eggs, fish, wine or oil) is observed on all Wednesdays and Fridays prior to Pentecost (June 19th). There will be no fasting of any kind during the week following Pentecost. The Apostles fast will begin on June 27th and run through June 29th this year.

Major Commemorations for June

June 5 Sunday of the Blindman

June 8 Theodore the General (transfer of relics)

June 9 Feast of the Ascension

June 12 Sunday of the Holy Fathers of Nicea

June 19 Feast of Pentecost

June 24 Nativity of the Forerunner

June 26 Sunday of All Saints

June 29 Chief Apostles Peter and Paul

June 30 Synaxis of the Twelve Apostles

Quotable: “How then does repentance become universal in its content? If we prepare the soil of our heart with the plough of repentance and continually irrigate it with the living water of grace, a time will come when ‘the day will dawn, and the day star will arise in our hearts’ (cf.2 Pet. 1:19). at some point, the energy of the Spirit of Truth, which will have accumulated in the heart, will open and enlarge the heart infinitely, and it will embrace heaven and earth, and all that exists. On this day, man will enter into Truth and thus be regenerated as true man. Then, according to the prophetic words of the Psalmist, ‘True man goeth forth unto his true work and labour until the evening of his life’ (cf. Ps. 104:23). He will then know how to ‘perfect holiness in the fear of God’ (@ Cor. 7:1), to think upon ‘whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report’ (Phil. 4:8), undertaking only such things as will contribute to his spiritual perfecting. The peace of Christ, the Prince of Peace (Isa. 9:6) will reign in his heart, and his every word will echo the treasure of perfection which he contains within himself. He will offer whatsoever overflows from the good treasure of his heart out of love for his fellows, and his enlarged heart (2 Cor. 6:13) will not exclude anyone. His spirit will scale the eternal heights and survey the depths of the judgments of God’s compassion. He will offer up his prayer, bringing every soul before the Lord, and praying that God may fill the heart of each with the incorruptible consolation of His Spirit ”
The Hidden Man of the Heart

by Archimandrite Zacharias

Worship: Sunday, June 12, 2016 (Sunday of the Holy Fathers of Nicea)

Scripture: Acts 20:16-18, 28-36; John 17:1-13

Celebrant: Father John

Epistle Reader: Walt Wood

Prosphora: Schelver

Coffee Hour: Schelver/Lavric/Turner