Feast of the Elevation of the Cross + September 14

Elevation of the CrossLet all the trees of the wood, planted from the beginning of time, rejoice; for their nature hath been sanctified by the stretching of Christ on the Tree. Wherefore, now, we worship Him, lifted up, and magnify Him.
+Canon of the Feast, Ninth Ode, Tone 8

O Lord, save Your people, and bless You inheritance. Grant victories to the Orthodox Christians over their adversaries. And by virtue of Your Cross, preserve Your habitation. +Troparion, Tone 1

As You were voluntarily raised upon the cross for our sake, grant mercy to those who are called by Your Name, O Christ God; make all Orthodox Christians glad by Your power, granting them victories over their adversaries, by bestowing on them the invincible trophy, Your weapon of Peace. +Kontakion, Tone 4


Please join us for a Vesperal Divine Liturgy in celebration of the Feast of the Elevation of the Holy Life-giving Cross. All are welcome.

See our Facebook Events Post for details.


Further Reading…

The Elevation of the Cross, celebrated on the fourteenth of September, commemorates the finding of Christ’s Cross by Saint Helen, the mother of the Emperor Constantine in the fourth century; and, after it was taken by the Persians, of its recovery by the Emperor Heraclius in the seventh century at which time it was “elevated” in the Church of the Resurrection in Jerusalem. From this latter event the “universal elevation” of the Cross was celebrated annually in all of the churches of the Christian Empire.
– https://oca.org/orthodoxy/the-orthodox-faith/worship/the-church-year/elevation-of-the-cross

http://ww1.antiochian.org/elevationofthecross

https://orthodoxwiki.org/Elevation_of_the_Holy_Cross

A Nurse in Need

Jesse Irwin is a reader at St Nicholas Orthodox Church

Jesse is raising money to help Anna Shushpanova, his friend Roma’s sister. She was hit by a car outside of Moscow, Russia, and seriously injured. Roma and his mother are struggling with the financial burden of keeping Anna in hospital and would be blessed by any help that we can offer them.

Jesse, who lived in Moscow from 2002 to 2010, has been friends with Roma for many years. He and Roma met at Nadezhda Russian Baptist Church in Moscow, roomed together, and also served together in the church’s music ministry. Roma is a junior criminal investigator with the Moscow police and lives with Anna and their mother in the town of Fryazino outside of Moscow. Roma & Anna’s mother is a parishioner at the Church of the Grebnevo Icon of the Mother of God in Grebnevo.


Anna: Nurse, Sister, Friend

Anna, who is 27, was born in Moldova, where she studied to be a nurse and dedicated her life to medicine and serving others. After finishing her studies there, Anna moved to Moscow to continue her education and advance her qualifications as a nurse. Friends and family value her for her kindness and joy, her affection and dedication.

The Accident

At 6:30 am on December 13th, 2017, on her way to her morning shift, Anna was a hit by an elderly man in a fast-moving car with headlights off. According to review, she was thrown ten feet in the air and fifty feet forward.Her injuries are many:

  • Open head injury,
  • Multiple skull fractures,
  • Cerebral contusion (bruising on the brain),
  • Pulmonary contusion (bruising on the lungs),
  • Damage to the liver,
  • And more….

After a series of challenges in the hospital, the doctors thought her chances of living were slim, but she has stuck it out, making it almost a year now.

Rehabilitation

Thanks to the financial support of two charitable organizations, the money Roma’s family could pull together, and donations from friends, Anna was able to stay for three (3) months in Three Sisters Rehabilitation Center – at  a cost of $7326 per month – where she made significant progress. Her chances of recovery with proper care were very high.

Unfortunately, the family’s savings ran out and financial support from friends was not enough for further treatment in the rehabilitation center beyond July 1st, 2018. And so, Anna was moved in and out of state-run city hospitals in Fryazino and Shchyolkovo outside of Moscow. These public hospitals did not have the necessary specialists for her care, and she was neglected by doctors. No assistance has come from the driver who hit Anna.

What Anna Needs Today

In addition to surgeries, she requires at least six (6) months of rehabilitation therapy, which would cost 20,000 rubles ($354) / day. Like many people in Russia, Anna does not have medical insurance to give her free access to specialized care. Roma is trying hard to get disability status for Anna, which would open doors for treatment and funding.

In addition to this, Anna’s family is pushing for her to be transferred to a hospital inside Moscow, where there is a better chance they can find the specialists and procedures she needs. Besides funds required for the necessary specialists – a rehabilitation therapist, neuropsychologist, occupational therapist, speech-language pathologist, and massage therapist – Anna is in need of expensive, day-to-day medications to maintain her level of recovery and guarantee future rehabilitation. Further items she needs are a wheelchair, a tracheostomy tube sanitation machine, a multifunction bed, pads and diapers, and bed sore medication.

Although she cannot speak, Anna is communicating more and more with gestures to show her family what she needs – whether it is a blanket adjusted or relief for pain in her leg. She is aware of things and people around her. She is also showing more interest in what she watches on TV.


Can You Help?

Your prayers and any moneys you can give would be greatly appreciated. Also,  help so much. Just imagine if 60 people gave $10 every month! That $600 would be enough to pay for her monthly medication. Please remember Anna in your prayers, as God’s help is more powerful and appropriate than anything we can do.

How to Donate

Sept 2, 2018 +Fourteenth Sunday after Pentecost

Sunday, September 02, 2018

Tone 5 / Eothinon 3
14th Sunday after Pentecost & 14th Sunday of Matthew
Martyr Mamas and His Family

Today we Commemorate: John the Faster, patriarch of Constantinople; Venerable Anthony & Theodosius of the Kiev Far Caves; 3,628 Martyrs who suffered at Nicomedia


Today’s Hymns and Readings:

Ordinary Entrance Hymn:

Come, let us worship, and fall down before Christ. Save us, O Son of God, Who art risen from the dead; who sing to Thee. Alleluia.

Resurrectional Apolytikion, Tone 5:

Let us believers praise and worship the Word; coeternal 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.

Apolytikion of St. Mamas, Tone 4:

Thy Martyr, O Lord, in his courageous contest for Thee * received as the prize the crowns of incorruption and life from Thee, our immortal God. * For since he possessed Thy strength, he cast down the tyrants * and wholly destroyed the demons’ strengthless presumption. * O Christ God, by his prayers, save our souls, since Thou art merciful.

Apolytikion of our Patron St Nicholas, Tone 3:

In truth you were revealed to your flock as a rule of faith, a model of meekness, and a teacher of self-control. Therefore you have won the heights by humility, riches by poverty, Holy Father, Bishop Nicholas, intercede with Christ our God that our souls may be saved.

Kontakion of The Nativity of The Theotokos, Tone 4:

By thy holy nativity, O pure one, Joachim and Anna were delivered from the reproach of barrenness; and Adam and Eve were delivered from the corruption of death; thy people do celebrate it, having been saved from the stain of iniquity, crying unto thee: The barren doth give birth to the Theotokos, who nourisheth our life.

Trisagion

Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal, have mercy on us. (3x)

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit,
both now and ever and to the ages of ages. Amen.
Holy and Immortal, have mercy on us

Holy God, Holy and Mighty, Holy and Immortal, Have mercy on us.


The Epistle

(For the 14th Sunday after Pentecost)

Thou, O Lord, wilt keep and preserve us. Save me, O Lord, for the godly man has failed.

The Reading from the Second Epistle of St. Paul to the Corinthians. (1:21-2:4)

Brethren, it is God who establishes us with you in Christ, and has commissioned us; He has put his seal upon us and given us His Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee. But I call God to witness against me—it was to spare you that I refrained from coming to Corinth. Not that we lord it over your faith; we work with you for your joy, for you stand firm in your faith. For I made up my mind not to make you another painful visit. For if I cause you pain, who is there to make me glad but the one whom I have pained? And I wrote as I did, so that when I came I might not suffer pain from those who should have made me rejoice, for I felt sure of all of you, that my joy would be the joy of you all. For I wrote you out of much affliction and anguish of heart and with many tears, not to cause you pain but to let you know the abundant love that I have for you.

The Gospel

(For the 14th Sunday of Matthew)

The Reading from the Holy Gospel according to St. Matthew. (22:2-14)

The Lord spoke this parable: “The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who gave a marriage feast for his son, and sent his servants to call those who were invited to the marriage feast; but they would not come. Again he sent other servants, saying, ‘Tell those who are invited, Behold, I have made ready my dinner, my oxen and my fat calves are killed, and everything is ready; come to the marriage feast.’ But they made light of it and went off, one to his farm, another to his business, while the rest seized his servants, treated them shamefully, and killed them. The king was angry, and he sent his troops and destroyed those murderers and burned their city. Then he said to his servants, ‘The wedding is ready, but those invited were not worthy. Go therefore to the thoroughfares, and invite to the marriage feast as many as you find.’ And those servants went out into the streets and gathered all whom they found, both bad and good; so the wedding hall was filled with guests. But when the king came in to look at the guests, he saw there a man who had no wedding garment; and he said to him, ‘Friend, how did you get in here without a wedding garment?’ And he was speechless. Then the king said to the attendants, ‘Bind him hand and foot, and cast him into the outer darkness; there men will weep and gnash their teeth.’ For many are called, but few are chosen.”


ANNOUNCEMENTS

Thoughts For the Day

“Have no anxiety about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.”
— St. Paul, Philippians 4:6 (RSV)

“When you sit down to eat, pray. When you eat bread, do so thanking Him for being so generous to you. If you drink wine, be mindful of Him who has given it to you for your pleasure and as a relief in sickness. When you dress, thank Him for His kindness in providing you with clothes. When you look at the sky and the beauty of the stars, throw yourself at God’s feet and adore Him who in His wisdom has arranged things in this way. Similarly, when the sun goes down and when it rises, when you are asleep or awake, give thanks to God, who created and arranged all things for your benefit, to have you know, love and praise their Creator.”
+ St. Basil the Great, from Homily V.

“Wherever God is — there is peace. And the opposite is self-evident: where there is envy, enmity, impatience, self-love — there is the devil. Wherever the devil is — there, everything is ruinous, proud and hostile.”
+ St. Anatoly of Optina

“Are you fighting against your passions? Fight, fight, and be good soldiers of Christ! Do not give in to evil and do not be carried away by the weakness of the flesh. During the time of temptation, flee to the Physician, crying out with the Holy Church, our mother: “O God, number me with the thief, the harlot, and the publican (i.e., with the repentant), and save me!”
+ St. Anatoly of Optina

“Whenever we enter the church and draw near to the heavenly mysteries, we ought to approach with all humility and fear, both because of the presence of the angelic powers and out of the reverence due to the sacred oblation; for as the Angels are said to have stood by the Lord’s body when it lay in the tomb, so we must believe that they are present in the celebration of the Mysteries of His most sacred Body at the time of consecration.”
+ St. Bede the Venerable


Church Bookstore

Jeremy Lourie is in charge of the Church Book Store, he makes purchases for the book store fairly often, please contact him if you are purchasing any books or other religious items, he can likely help you get them at a discount or at least save you shipping costs.

Aug 26, 2018 +Thirteenth Sunday after Pentecost

St. Nicholas Orthodox Christian Church

Sunday, August 26, 2018
Tone 3 / Eothinon 1; Thirteenth Sunday after Pentecost
& Thirteenth Sunday of Matthew
After-feast of the Dormition of the Theotokos

Today we Commemorate: Holy Martyr Andrew the Commander and those with him; Venerable Theophanes of Docheiariou monastery on Athos; Saint Pitirim, Bishop of Perm; Martyrs Timothy, Agapius and Thekla of Palestine


Today’s Hymns and Readings:

Ordinary Entrance Hymn:

Come, let us worship, and fall down before Christ. Save us, O Son of God, Who art risen from the dead; who sing to Thee. Alleluia.

Resurrectional Apolytikion, Tone 3:

Let the heavens rejoice and the earth be glad, for the Lord hath done a mighty act with His own arm. He hath trampled down death by death, and become the first-born from the dead. He hath delivered us from the depths of Hades, granting the world the Great Mercy.

Apolytikion of the Dormition, Tone 1:

In thy birth-giving, O Theotokos, thou didst keep and preserve virginity; and in thy falling-asleep thou hast not forsaken the world; for thou wast translated into life, being the Mother of Life. Wherefore, by thine intercessions, deliver our souls from death.

Apolytikion of our Patron St Nicholas, Tone 3:

In truth you were revealed to your flock as a rule of faith, a model of meekness, and a teacher of self-control. Therefore you have won the heights by humility, riches by poverty, Holy Father, Bishop Nicholas, intercede with Christ our God that our souls may be saved.

Kontakion of the Dormition, Tone 2:

Verily, the Theotokos, who is ever watchful in intercessions, and whose prayers are never rejected, neither tomb nor death could control. But since she is the Mother of Life, He Who dwelt in her ever-virgin womb did translate her to life.

Trisagion

Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal, have mercy on us. (3x)

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit,
both now and ever and to the ages of ages. Amen.
Holy and Immortal, have mercy on us

Holy God, Holy and Mighty, Holy and Immortal, Have mercy on us.


The Epistle

(For the Thirteenth Sunday after Pentecost)

Sing praises to our God, sing praises. Clap your hands, all ye nations.

The Reading from the First Epistle of St. Paul to the Corinthians. (15:1-11)

Brethren, I would remind you in what terms I preached to you the Gospel, which you received, in which you stand, by which you are saved, if you hold it fast—unless you believed in vain. For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that He was buried, that He rose on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures, and that He appeared to Cephas, then to the Twelve. Then He appeared to more than five hundred brethren at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have fallen asleep. Then He appeared to James, then to all the Apostles. Last of all, as to one untimely born, He appeared also to me. For I am the least of the Apostles, unfit to be called an Apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace toward me was not in vain. On the contrary, I worked harder than any of them, though it was not I, but the grace of God, which is with me. Whether then it was I or they, so we preach and so you believed.

The Gospel

(For the Thirteenth Sunday of Matthew)

The Reading from the Holy Gospel according to St. Matthew. (19:16-26)

At that time, a young man came up to Jesus, kneeling and saying, “Good Teacher, what good deed must I do, to have eternal life?” And He said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. If you would enter life, keep the commandments.” He said to Him, “Which?” And Jesus said, “You shall not kill, you shall not commit adultery, you shall not steal, you shall not bear false witness, honor your father and mother, and you shall love your neighbor as yourself.” The young man said to Him, “All these I have observed; what do I still lack?” Jesus said to him, “If you would be perfect, go, sell what you possess and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me.” When the young man heard this, he went away sorrowful; for he had great possessions. And Jesus said to his disciples, “Truly, I say to you, it will be hard for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” When the disciples heard this they were greatly astonished, saying, “Who then can be saved?” But Jesus looked at them and said to them, “With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”


ANNOUNCEMENTS

Thoughts For the Day

“In going to church, think that thou art going to the house of the King of Heaven, where with fear and joy one ought to stand as in heaven before the King of Heaven. While standing in church, do not look around to the sides and do not look at how someone is standing and praying, lest thou be condemned with the Pharisee, since thou didst not come to judge others, but to ask for mercy for thyself from God the Judge and Knower of hearts. Gaze with compunction toward the altar alone, where the holy sacrifice is offered. More than anything else, beware of laughter and conversations, for whoever laughs or converses while standing in church does not render honor to the holy place and tempts others and prevents others from praying.”

— St. Tikhon of Zadonsk

Sinners that repent are still saved; both publicans and fornicators cleansed by repentance enter into the Kingdom of Heaven. The compassionate God still calls to Himself all that have turned away, and He awaits them and promises them mercy. The loving Father still receives His prodigal sons come back from a far country and He opens the doors of His house and clothes them in the best robe, and gives them each a ring on their hand and shoes on their feet and commands all the saints to rejoice in them.

— St. Tikhon of Zadonsk: Journey to Heaven

“Prayer does not consist merely in standing and bowing your body or in reading written prayers….it is possible to pray at all times, in all places, with mind and spirit. You can lift up your mind and heart to God while walking, sitting, working, in a crowd and in solitude. His door is always open, unlike man’s. We can always say to Him in our hearts Lord , Lord have mercy.”

— St. Tikhon of Zadonsk

Abba Poemen said that Abba John said that the saints are like a group of trees, each bearing different fruit, but watered from the same source. The practices of one saint differ from those of another, but it is the same Spirit that works in all of them.

Source: Sr. Benedicta Ward, The Sayings of the Desert Fathers


Church Bookstore

Jeremy Lourie is in charge of the Church Book Store, he makes purchases for the book store fairly often, please contact him if you are purchasing any books or other religious items, he can likely help you get them at a discount or at least save you shipping costs.

July 22, 2018 +Eighth Sunday after Pentecost

 

Sunday, July 22, 2018

Tone 7 / Eothinon 8; 8th Sunday after Pentecost & 8th Sunday of Matthew

Today we Commemorate: Mary Magdalene, myrrh-bearer and equal-to-the-Apostles; Virgin-martyr Markella of Chios; Cyril I, Patriarch of Antioch; Cyprian, fool-for-Christ of Suzdal; Cornelius of Pereyaslavl; Wandregisilus of Caux


Today’s Hymns and Readings:

Ordinary Entrance Hymn:

O Come, let us worship and fall down before Christ. Save us, O Son of God, Who art risen from the dead; who sing to Thee. Alleluia.

Resurrectional Apolytikion, Tone 7:

Thou didst shatter death by Thy Cross, Thou didst open paradise to the thief; Thou didst turn the sadness of the ointment-bearing women into joy. And didst bid Thine Apostles proclaim a warning, that Thou hast risen O Christ, granting to the world the Great Mercy.

Apolytikion of St Mary Magdalene, Tone 1:

When Christ God had been born for our sakes from the Virgin, * thou faithfully didst follow Him, keeping His statutes * and heeding His sacred laws, O august Mary Magdalene. * Hence, as we today observe thy holy remembrance, * we receive the loosing of our sins and transgressions * through thy holy prayers for us.

Apolytikion of our Patron St Nicholas, Tone 3:

In truth you were revealed to your flock as a rule of faith, a model of meekness, and a teacher of self-control. Therefore you have won the heights by humility, riches by poverty, Holy Father, Bishop Nicholas, intercede with Christ our God that our souls may be saved.

Ordinary Kontakion, Tone 2:

O protection of Christians that cannot be put to shame, mediation unto the Creator most constant, O despise not the suppliant voices of those who have sinned; but be thou quick, O good one, to come unto our aid, who in faith cry unto thee: Hasten to intercession, and speed thou to make supplication, thou who dost ever protect, O Theotokos, them that honor thee.

Trisagion

Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal, have mercy on us. (3x)

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit,
both now and ever and to the ages of ages. Amen.
Holy and Immortal, have mercy on us

Holy God, Holy and Mighty, Holy and Immortal, Have mercy on us.


The Epistle

(For the 8th Sunday after Pentecost)

The Lord will give strength to His people.
Ascribe to the Lord, O sons of God, ascribe to the Lord honor and glory.

The Reading from the First Epistle of St. Paul to the Corinthians. (1:10-17)

Brethren, I appeal to you, by the Name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree and that there be no dissension among you, but that you be united in the same mind and the same judgment. For it has been reported to me by Chloe’s people that there is quarreling among you, my brethren. What I mean is that each one of you says, “I belong to Paul,” or “I belong to Apollos,” or “I belong to Cephas,” or “I belong to Christ.” Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul? I thank God that I baptized none of you except Crispos and Gaius; lest anyone should say that you were baptized in my name. (I did baptize also the household of Stephanas. Beyond that, I do not know whether I baptized anyone else.) For Christ did not send me to baptize but to preach the Gospel, and not with eloquent wisdom, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power.

The Gospel

(For the 8th Sunday of Matthew)

The Reading from the Holy Gospel according to St. Matthew. (14:14-22)

At that time, when Jesus went ashore he saw a great throng; and he had compassion on them, and healed their sick. When it was evening, the disciples came to Him and said, “This is a lonely place, and the day is now over; send the crowds away to go into the villages and buy food for themselves.” Jesus said, “They need not go away; you give them something to eat.” They said to Him, “We have only five loaves here and two fish.” And He said, “Bring them here to Me.” Then He ordered the crowds to sit down on the grass; and taking the five loaves and the two fish He looked up to Heaven, and blessed, and broke and gave the loaves to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. And they all ate and were satisfied. And they took up twelve baskets full of the broken pieces left over. And those who ate were about five thousand men, besides women and children. Then Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go before Him to the other side, while He dismissed the crowds.


ANNOUNCEMENTS

Thoughts For the Day

Who indeed was This Virgin and from what sort of parents did She come? Mary, the glory of all, was born of the tribe of David, and from the seed of Joachim. She was descended from Eve, and was the child of Anna. Joachim was a gentle man, pious, raised in God’s law. Living prudently and walking before God he grew old without child: the years of his prime provided no continuation of his lineage. Anna was likewise God-loving, prudent, but barren; she lived in harmony with her husband, but was childless. As much concerned about this, as about the observance of the law of the Lord, she indeed was daily stung by the grief of childlessness and suffered that which is the usual lot of the childless — she grieved, she sorrowed, she was distressed, and impatient at being childless.
Thus, Joachim and his spouse lamented that they had no successor to continue their line; yet the spark of hope was not extinguished in them completely: both intensified their prayer about the granting to them of a child to continue their line. In imitation of the prayer heard of Hannah (1 Kings 1: 10), both without leaving the temple fervently beseeched God that He would undo her sterility and make fruitful her childlessness. And they did not give up on their efforts, until their wish be fulfilled. The Bestower of gifts did not contemn the gift of their hope. The unceasing power came quickly in help to those praying and beseeching God, and it made capable both the one and the other to produce and bear a child. In such manner, from sterile and barren parents, as it were from irrigated trees, was borne for us a most glorious fruition — the all-pure Virgin.
The constraints of infertility were destroyed — prayer, upright manner of life, these rendered them fruitful; the childless begat a Child, and the childless woman was made a happy mother.
+ St. Andrew of Crete, Excerpt from the Sermon on the Nativity of the Virgin Mary

“‘And my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him’ [John 14.23]. My friends, consider the greatness of this solemn feast that commemorates God’s coming as a guest into our hearts! If some rich and influential friend were to come to your home, you would promptly put it all in order for fear something there might offend your friend’s eyes when he came in. Let all of us then who are preparing our inner homes for God cleanse them of anything our wrongdoing has brought into them.”
+ St. Gregory Dialogos, on Pentecost in Be Friends of God

Ladies Meeting Today Following Liturgy


Church Bookstore

Jeremy Lourie is in charge of the Church Book Store, he makes purchases for the book store fairly often, please contact him if you are purchasing any books or other religious items, he can likely help you get them at a discount or at least save you shipping costs.