December 19, 2021
Sunday before the Nativity (Genealogy)
Hebrews. (11:9-10, 32-40): Brethren, by faith Abraham sojourned in the land of promise, as in a foreign land, living in tents with Isaac and Jacob, heirs with him of the same promise. For he looked forward to the city which has foundations, whose builder and maker is God. And what more shall I say? For time would fail me to tell of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, of David and Samuel and the prophets— who through faith conquered kingdoms, enforced justice, received promises, stopped the mouths December 19, 2021 Liturgy Variables 2 Sunday before Nativity of lions, quenched raging fire, escaped the edge of the sword, won strength out of weakness, became mighty in war, and put foreign armies to flight. Women received their dead by resurrection. Some were tortured, refusing to accept release, so that they might rise again to a better life. Others suffered mocking and scourging, and even chains and imprisonment. They were stoned, they were sawn in two, they were killed with the sword; they went about in skins of sheep and goats, destitute, afflicted, ill-treated—of whom the world was not worthy—wandering over deserts and mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth. And all these, though well attested by their faith, did not receive what was promised, since God had foreseen something better for us, that apart from us they should not be made perfect.
Matthew. (1:1-25): The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham. Abraham was the father of Isaac, and Isaac the father of Jacob, and Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers, and Judah the father of Perez and Zerah by Tamar, and Perez the father of Hezron, and Hezron the father of Aram, and Aram the father of Amminadab, and Amminadab the father of Nahshon, and Nahshon the father of Salmon, and Salmon the father of Boaz by Rahab, and Boaz the father of Obed by Ruth, and Obed the father of Jesse, and Jesse the father of David the king. And David was the father of Solomon by the wife of Uriah, and Solomon the father of Rehoboam, and Rehoboam the father of Abijah, and Abijah the father of Asa, and Asa the father of Jehoshaphat, and Jehoshaphat the father of Joram, and Joram the father of Uzziah, and Uzziah the father of Jotham, and Jotham the father of Ahaz, and Ahaz the father of Hezekiah, and Hezekiah the father of Manasseh, and Manasseh the father of Amon, and Amon the father of Josiah, and Josiah the father of Jechoniah and his brothers, at the time of the deportation to Babylon. And after the deportation to Babylon: Jechoniah was the father of Shealtiel, and Shealtiel the father of Zerubbabel, and Zerubbabel the father of Abiud, and Abiud the father of Eliakim, and Eliakim the father of Azor, and Azor the father of Zadok, and Zadok the father of Achim, and Achim the father of Eliud, and Eliud the father of Eleazar, and Eleazar the father of Matthan, and Matthan the father of Jacob, and Jacob the father of Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom Jesus was born, Who is called Christ. So all the generations from Abraham to David were fourteen generations, and from David to the deportation to Babylon fourteen generations, and from the deportation to Babylon to the Christ were fourteen generations. Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way. When His mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child of the Holy Spirit; and her husband Joseph, being a just man and unwilling to put her to shame, resolved to divorce her quietly. But as he considered this, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary your wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit; she will bear a son, and you shall call His Name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.” All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet: “Behold, a virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and His Name shall be called Emmanuel” (which means, God with us). When Joseph woke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord had commanded him; he took his wife, but knew her not until she had borne a son; and he called His Name Jesus.
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 the Fathers: Great are the accomplishments of faith; for the three holy youths rejoiced in the fountain of flames as though at waters of rest. And the Prophet Daniel appeared a shepherd to the lions as though they were sheep. Wherefore, by their pleadings, O Christ God, have mercy upon us.
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 Preparatory for Nativity: Today the Virgin comes unto the cave to give birth in an ineffable manner to the Word before the ages. Rejoice, therefore, O universe, when you hear, and glorify with the angels and the shepherds him who shall appear by his own will as a new babe, being God before the ages.
UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE: All services listed on the calendar will be available through streaming and webcast.
Please continue to follow the CDC Guidelines to limit contagion and the spread of the COVID virus.
Sunday, December 19 (Sunday before Nativity)
8:50 a.m. — Orthros (webcast)
9:00 a.m. — Christian Education
10:00 a.m. — Divine Liturgy (webcast)
Monday, December 20 (Ignatios the God-bearer of Antioch )
Father Herman off
Tuesday, December 21
Wednesday, December 22
6:30 p.m. — Advent Paraklesis
Thursday, December 23
Friday, December 24 (Forefeast of the Nativity)
7:00 a.m. — Royal Hours
10:00 p.m. — Festal Orthros followed by Divine Liturgy
Saturday, December 25 (The Nativity of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ)
Sunday, December 26 (Synaxis of the Theotokos; Sunday after Nativity)
8:50 a.m. — Orthros (webcast)
9:00 a.m. — Christian Education
10:00 a.m. — Divine Liturgy (webcast)
Please be reminded that it is common Antiochian practice to tilt your head back and open your mouth to receive the Body and Blood. Please be aware of this when you approach the Chalice.
The Eucharist Bread …was offered by the Daniel Roots for the Divine Liturgy this morning. The Artoklasia bread for the Sunday before Nativity was offered last night by the Pacuraris.
Eucharist Bread Schedule (MODIFIED Coffee Hour — Coffee, pre-packaged food**):
Eucharist Bread Coffee Hour
December 19 D. Root Danereau, Alaeetawi, Katool
December 24 (Fri. p.m.) Karam Meadows, Pigott
December 26 Brock Schelver, Algood
December 31 Baker (Artoklasia bread)
(Feast of the Circumcision of our Lord; Feast-day of St. Basil the Great)
We will continue to serve coffee (and juice for the children), and pre-packaged snacks, following the Divine Liturgy on Sunday mornings. We will also continue to use the disposable cups and individual sweeteners and creamers. Please use the available hand sanitizer before using the air-pots to get your coffee. Coffee will be served inside the fellowship hall and people will be free to go outside or to sit inside. For those sitting inside, we ask that you spread out and provide some space for each other. Please DO NOT congregate in front of the coffee table or in the entrance to the Fellowship Hall.
Schedule for Epistle Readers – Page numbers refer to the Apostolos (book of the Epistles) located on the Chanters’ stand at the front of the nave. Please be sure to use this book when you read.
Reader Reading Page#
December 19 Ian Jones Heb. 11:9-10, 32-40 348
December 24 (Fri. p.m.) Brenda Baker Gal. 4:4-7 351
December 26 Walt Wood Gal. 1:11-19 188
January 2 Kh. Be’Be’ Schelver II Tim. 4:5-8 354
January 5 (Wed. p.m.) Sam Habeeb Titus 2:11-14; 3:4-7 361
(Feast of Theophany)
January 9 Sh. Charlotte Algood Eph. 4:7-13 364
January 16 Kh. Sharon Meadows Col. 3:4-11 233
January 23 Ian Jones I Tim. 1:15-17 245
January 30 Brenda Baker Heb. 13:7-16 365
Also, please remember that we still need your tithes and offerings which may be placed in the tithe box at the back of the nave or be mailed to: St. Peter Orthodox Church, P.O. Box 2084, Madison, MS 39130-2084.
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; Mary Greene (Lee and Kh. Sharon’s sister); Jay and Joanna; Fr. Leo and Kh. Be’Be’ and their family; Emad and Natalia Alaeetawi and their family; Tom and Kathy Willingham; Marilyn (Kyriake) Snell; Jack and Jill Weatherly; Darlene Amason and her family; Lottie Dabbs (Sh. Charlotte Algood’s mother), Sh. Charlotte and their family; Maria Costas (currently at St. Catherine’s Village); Eugene and Bea Berry.
If you are not feeling well, PLEASE do not attempt to come to the services. This also includes anyone who may have been exposed to you during this time. Also, please let Fr. Herman know if you are not feeling well and have COVID like symptoms.
Save the Date! The Diocese of Miami and the Southeast will hold their annual Winter Retreat January 28-30, at St. Elias Orthodox Church in Atlanta. More information will be available later.
Dn. Richard is in charge of showing photos from St. Peter’s last 35 years for the celebration on March 5th. Please look through your photos and submit good selections to him within the next couple of weeks. They may be physical prints or digital clips. Be sure to put your name on them if you want them returned. The deadline for submitting your photos to Dn. Richard is the end of January. Suggested Categories:
Weddings, Baptisms, Chrismations Bible Studies
Fishing Trips Men’s and Women’s lunches
Retreats Angel Tree
Fall Festival Sunday School and Garden work
Stew Pot Work Days
Any other things involving the life of our parish
Nativity Feast: We will be having a meal following the Divine Liturgy on the night of December 24th. In order to simplify set-up and clean-up, we are ordering sandwich trays from Newk’s Deli. These bundles will include sandwiches, fresh fruit and a dessert tray. In addition to this we will have cheese balls and cheese slices with crackers, cheese cake squares and mini crème puffs. Please do not bring any food to share unless you have been requested to do so. It will be very important that you use the hand sanitizer and wear a mask while serving your food. A basket will be located on the coffee table for donations to help cover the cost of the meal.
St. Nicholas Fund: We are still collecting for our annual St. Nicholas Fund. If you wish to make a donation, please make your check out to St. Peter with the memo: St. Nicholas Fund.
Pledge Letters have been mailed. Please return them to the church as soon as possible.
* The Ladies will meet at the church at 10:00 a.m. on the second Saturday of the month to pray the Akathist to the Mother of God, Nurturer of Children on behalf of our children. They will also enjoy a book study afterwards.
* The Ladies will meet for lunch on the last Tuesday of the month.
* As is our usual custom in the parish during the Fast of the Nativity, we will pray the Advent Paraklesis on Wednesday evenings in place of Daily Vespers.
* We will celebrate the Feast of the Nativity of our Lord on December 24th with Royal Hours, beginning at 7:00 a.m., and Festal Orthros followed by the Divine Liturgy, beginning at 10:00 p.m. that evening. Please see announcement below for information about the meal afterwards.
* As is our parish custom, the Feast of the Circumcision of the Lord and the feast-day of St. Basil the Great will be celebrated with Great Vespers with Litia and Artoklasia on Friday evening, December 31st, beginning at 6:30 p.m.
* We will celebrate the Feast of Theophany with Royal Hours on the morning of Wednesday, January 5th, beginning at 7:00 a.m. and with Festal Orthros followed by the Divine Liturgy and the Blessing of the Waters that evening, beginning at 6:00 p.m.
* We will once again hold the Blessing of the Waters at the Ross Barnett Reservoir with the other Orthodox Churches in our area on Sunday, January 9th, beginning at 4:00 p.m. at Crab Shack (next door to Cock of the Walk). Those who wish will remain for a meal there afterwards.
* The Feast of the Veneration of the Chains of St. Peter (our patronal feast) will be celebrated on Sunday, January 16th. We will have a Pot Luck Meal that day and will resume our monthly Pot Luck Meals after that.
* His Grace, Bishop NICHOLAS will be at St. Peter the weekend of March 5-6, 2022 to help us celebrate Fr. John’s retirement and our 35th anniversary as a parish. Please mark your calendars now.
Fasting Discipline for December
During the Fast of the Nativity the traditional fasting (no meat, dairy, eggs, fish, wine or oil) discipline is observed each day of the week. There will be no fasting of any kind from December 25th through January 4th.
Major Commemorations for December
December 20 Ignatios the God-bearer of Antioch
December 25 The Nativity of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ
December 26 Synaxis of the Theotokos
December 27 Protomartyr Stephen
Instructions for streaming our services can be found on the parish website.
Quotable: “There is a great difference between existing and living. Many people exist. Very few live. Only those who seek God have life. Only those who delight in His commandments and rejoice in accomplishing His will pass beyond mere existence and actually find life. ‘Seek God, and your soul shall live’ (Ps. 69:32, LXX). This is the cry of the psalmist David who is especially hymned on this Sunday and on the Sunday after Christmas. His exhortation is in perfect harmony with the words of God given to Moses in His revelation of the divine Law.”
Fr. Thomas Hopko, The Winter Pascha
Worship: Sunday, December 26, 2021 (Sunday after the Nativity)
Scripture: Gal. 1:11-19; Matthew 2:13-23
Celebrant: Father Herman
Epistle Reader: Walt Wood
Coffee Hour: Schelver/Algood