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March 5, 2017

First Sunday of Great Lent

Sunday of Orthodoxy

On the first Sunday of Great Lent, we celebrate the feast of the Triumph of Orthodoxy. This is an historical feast commemorating the restoration of the icons, which had been banned for several decades, to their rightful liturgical use in the year 843 A.D.

The major emphasis of this feast is the victory of the true faith, the victory which always ultimately triumphs. Having completed the first week of our lenten efforts, we are reminded that Christ, the perfect image of God the Father, calls us to personal victory by restoring within ourselves “the image and likeness of God” in which we were first created (Genesis 1:26).

The icons of Our Lord, the Theotokos, and all the saints are images of true humanity, signs of what our eternal calling and vocation really is. They tell us that we are all called to be living icons and imitators of Christ, bearing the likeness of God as gracious vessels of the Holy Spirit.

Hebrews 11:24-26;32-40: The writer of Hebrews calls us to consider the faith of those Old Testa­ment saints who endured hardships and death and yet still did great things because of their faith. The Apos­tle encourages us to lay aside the encumbrances of sin and run with endurance the race that is set be­fore us.

John 1:43-51: From our reading in the Gospel of John we see Jesus call Philip and Nathaniel to be His disciples.

Troparion of the Resurrection: Having learned the joyful message of the Resurrection from the angel, the women Disciples cast from them their parental condemnation, and proudly broke the news to the Disciples, saying, Death has been spoiled. Christ God is risen, granting the world Great Mercy.

Troparion of the Sunday of Orthodoxy: Thy pure image do we venerate, O good One, asking forgiveness of our sins, O Christ our God; for by thine own will thou didst ascend the Cross in thy body, to save thy creatures from the bondage of the enemy. Thou hast truly filled all with joy, since thou didst come, O our Saviour, to save the world.

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 Sundays of Lent: To thee the champion leader, I thy servant offer thanks for victory, O Theotokos, thou who hast delivered me form terror. As thou hast power invincible, free me from every danger that I may cry unto thee: Rejoice, O bride without bridegroom.


Sunday, March 5 (Sunday of Orthodoxy)

8:50 a.m. — Orthros

9:00 a.m. — Christian Education

10:00 a.m. — Divine Liturgy

5:00 p.m. — Sunday of Orthodoxy vespers at St. George in Vicksburg

Monday, March 6

Office Closed — Father John’s Day Off

Tuesday, March 7

6:00 a.m. — Lenten Orthros

Wednesday, March 8

6:30 p.m. — Pre-sanctified Liturgy followed by Soup Supper

Thursday, March 9

6:00 a.m. — Lenten Orthros

Friday, March 10

6:30 p.m. — Akathist Hymn to the Theotokos

Saturday, March 11

10:00 a.m. — Ladies meet for Akathist

12:30 p.m. — Shower for Stephanie Baker at the Meadows’

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

Sunday, March 12 (2nd Sunday of Lent; Gregory Palamas)

8:50 a.m. — Orthros

9:00 a.m. — Christian Education

10:00 a.m. — Divine Liturgy

12:00 p.m. — POT LUCK MEAL


Eucharist Bread …was offered by the Brocks 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

March 5 Brock Stewart/Turner/Waites

March 12 Baker POT LUCK MEAL

(set-up: Ellios/Zouboukos)

March 19 R. Root Pigott/Meadows/Alaeetawi

March 25 (Sat. a.m.) Henderson Kh. Janet

(Feast of the Annunciation)

March 26 Algood Skirtech/Skirtech/Parker

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#

March 5 Sh. Charlotte Algood Heb. 11:24-26, 32-40 281

March 12 Kh. Sharon Meadows Heb. 1:10-2:3 283

March 19 Mildred Morris Heb. 4:14-5:6 285

March 25 (sat. a.m.) Brenda Baker Heb. 2:11-18 376

March 26 Kh. Be’Be’ Schelver Heb. 6:13-20 287

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.

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 Chamblee; Aidan Milnor, the Milnor family; Sam and Lamia Dabit and Sammie; Georgia Buchanan, George and Michael Johns (Georgia’s grandsons) and their family; Mary Greene (Lee and Kh. Sharon’s sister); Fr. Stephen Tewfik; Walt and Charlotte Wood and their family; Lynda Costas; Fr. Nicholas, Kh. Jan and Angelina Speier; Tom and Kathy Willingham and Tom’s stepdaughter, Marica, who has been diagnosed with MS; Peggy (David Turner’s paternal aunt) who is suffering from cancer and related complications; Alexa (Lou Turner’s very close friend) who sustained multiple injuries in a serious car wreck; and George (Dorothea and Daniel Staursky’s uncle) who sustained injuries in a bad fall.

Chanters’ Stand: We are looking into the purchase of a Chanters’ Stand for the church. The ones that are currently under consideration are carved and are similar to the beautiful tables in the nave and narthex. The cost would be somewhere between $2000 and $4000. We are soliciting donations to cover the cost. If you would like to participate, please let Fr. John know.

A Bridal Shower is planned for Stephanie Baker on Saturday, March 11th at the Meadows’ home from 12:30 – 2:00 p.m. All the ladies in the church are invited. Please see the invitation posted on the bulletin board in the Fellowship Hall for more information.

Parents of Young Children: Please make sure that your children are supervised if they are in the Nursery during Coffee Hour, just as they are supervised if out on the Playground. The Nursery is being left in a mess on Sunday mornings following Coffee Hour and the clean-up is falling on the same people (i.e. those who teach Sunday School classes in that room). If you leave and there are still children using the room, please make sure that your children pick up the things with which they have been playing.

If you are the last to leave, please make sure that the doors in the Fellowship Hall, the kitchen and the hallway are all locked.

March is Ladies month in our Archdiocese when we give special attention to the role of women in our parish. Ladies will be reading the Epistle this month. Also, please allow the women to go first for communion during this time.

Lenten Alms-giving Project: We will again be collecting food and household items during Great Lent for Sunnybrook Children’s Home. You may bring them to the Church and put them on one table in the corner of the Fellowship Hall on the east end nearest the street. Copies of the list of items is available in the foyer near Fr. John’s office. These will be collected until Tuesday, April 4th, when someone from Sunnybrook will collect them. As an alternative, you may drop them by Sunnybrook, not far from pour church at 222 Sunnybrook Road, Ridgeland. When you enter the gate, go straight until you have to turn. Then turn right and you will see the Commissary Building on the left. Large quantity or bulk items are preferred. Great Lent is a special time of alms-giving and remembering those in need. Please consider participating in this worthwhile project! If you have any questions or need additional information, please contact Dn. Terry or Alfred Katool.

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 Ladies of the parish meet for lunch and fellowship on the fourth Tuesday of the month.

* This year Sunday of Orthodoxy Vespers will be held at St. George Antiochian Orthodox Church in Vicksburg, beginning at 5:00 p.m. (Please note the time).

* As is our parish custom, we will celebrate the Liturgy of the Presanctified Gifts in place of Daily Vespers on Wednesday evenings, beginning at 6:30 p.m., followed by a Soup Supper in the Fellowship Hall. On Friday evenings we will celebrate the Akathist to the Theotokos, again beginning at 6:30 p.m.

* The Feast of the Annunciation will be celebrated with Orthros followed by Divine Liturgy on Saturday morning, March 25th, beginning at 9:00 a.m.

Burial and Funeral Care Instructions forms: These forms are located on the bureau in the hallway outside the nave. There are two forms: one for the church and one for the family (with a copy given to the church). Please fill out your forms and return to the office as soon as possible.
Please be sure to have your forms notarized. The forms will be kept in a file in the office so that we have your instructions should the need arise.

Fasting Discipline for March

During Great Lent the traditional fasting discipline (no meat, dairy, eggs, fish, wine or oil) is observed on all days of the week until Pascha (except the Feast of the Annunciation on March 25th and Palm Sunday on April 9th, when fish, wine and oil are permitted).

Major Commemorations for March

March 5 1st Sunday of Lent; Sunday of Orthodoxy

March 9 Forty Martyrs of Sebaste

March 12 2nd Sunday of Lent; Gregory of Palamas

March 16 Christodoulos, wonder-worker of Patmos

March 19 3rd Sunday of Lent; Adoration of the Holy Cross

March 25 Feast of the Annunciation

March 26 4th Sunday of Lent; John Climacus

Synaxis of the Archangel Gabriel

Quotable: “‘We waited, and at last our expectations were fulfilled’, writes the Serbian Bishop Nikolai of Ochrid, describing the Easter service at Jerusalem. ‘When the Patriarch sang “Christ is risen”, a heavy burden fell from our souls. We felt as if we also had been raised from the dead. All at once, from all around, the same cry resounded like the noise of many waters. “Christ is risen” sang the Greeks, the Russians. the Arabs, the Serbs, the Copts, the Armenians, the Ethiopians—one after another, each in his own tongue, in his own melody . . . Coming from the service at dawn, we began to regard everything in the light of the glory of Christ’s Resurrection, and all appeared different from what it had yesterday; everything seemed better, more expressive, more glorious. Only in the light of the Resurrection does life receive meaning.”

Bishop Nikolai Velimirovich, Missionary Letters

Worship: Sunday, March 12, 2017 (Second Sunday of Great Lent; Gregory Palamas)

Scripture: Hebrews 1:10-2:3; Mark 2:1-12

Celebrant: Father John

Epistle Reader: Kh. Sharon Meadows

Prosphora: Baker

Coffee Hour: POT LUCK MEAL

(set-up: Ellis/Zouboukos)