St. Mary Orthodox Church

Cambridge, MA

Weekly Newsletter for the week Friday, August 1, 2008 through Thursday, August 7, 2008


FR. ANTONY IS  AWAY - Fr. Antony is at the Antiochian Village through Friday, August 8. assisting in pastoral ministry to the young people attending the 4th session of Summer Camp. Fr. George Papademetriou of the Greek Metropolis of Boston will be celebrating the Divine Liturgy in Fr. Antony's absence.  In case of emergency this week contact Fr. John Teebagy of St. John Church , Dedham at  781-326-3046.

DORMITION FAST - The Dormition Fast starts Friday, August  1,  and continues through Thursday, August 14. It is traditional to attend Paraclesis services (supplication to the Theotokos) throughout this two-week period.  We will be having two Paraclesis services at St. Mary's:  on Monday, August 11, and Wednesday August 13, at 6:30pm.  If you would like to attend Paraclesis before that, St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church in Lexington ( 17 Meriam St ) has Paraclesis every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday throughout the fast at 7:00 pm.  Also  St. George Church, 55 Emmonsdale Rd., West Roxbury has Paraclesis Services scheduled for Wednesday, August 6,  Friday, August 8  and Wednesday, August 13 at 6:00 p.m.

TRANSFIGURATION - The Feast of Transfiguration falls on Wednesday, August 6.  There will be no services at St. Mary, with Fr. Anthony away, but there will be a Liturgy for the Feast with the Blessing of Fruit on  Tuesday,  August 5,  at 6:30 p.m. at St. George Church, West Roxbury , if you wish to attend.

PATRONAL FEAST DAY - The Dormition of the Blessed Theotokos is August 15, 2008. On Thursday, August 14, we will celebrate the Vigil for the Dormition with Vespers at 4:15 p.m. , Orthros with Lamentations at 5:30 p.m., and Divine Liturgy  at 7:00 p.m.  This will be followed by a Parish Dinner at 8:15 p.m. (with prior reservations), offered by Charles Arbeely.  The cost for Adults & Students is $5.00;  Children 12 and under are FREE.  Please R.S.V.P. by Thursday, August 7  to  the Church Office at 617-547-1234. Paid Reservations are preferred.


NEW FORMAT - The content of the St. Mary Update has been rearranged.  Our information is now presented in the following order:  This Week, New Announcements, Reminders; Opportunities for Service, This Week's Volunteers; Liturgical Schedule for This Week, Looking Ahead; Insight; and Subscription Information.  Your reaction to the new arrangement would be welcome!

This newsletter is available in both Text and HTML formats. We recommend HTML, but if you have trouble reading it you can change your preference to Text.  To select or change  your format, click on the Update Profile link at the bottom of this e-mail.

HABITAT FOR HUMANITY - The Diocesan Fellowship of St. John the Divine is sponsoring a day working with Habitat for Humanity on the Cape, at one of two sites in Falmouth , MA , on Saturday, August 9th,   8:00 am - 3:30 pm    Vespers will be at 5:00pm with dinner to follow at St. Michael the Archangel , Cotuit.  PLEASE RSVP to Michael Marge or Heather Feldman


CHOIR - The Choir will be helping to chant the Lamentations and the entire Festal Divine Liturgy on Thursday, August 14.  Please plan on arriving by 6:30 p.m.


PILGRIMAGE TO NEW SKETE - The Monastic Communities and parishioners of New Skete Monastery (OCA) in Cambridge , New York , invite you to join them for a day of prayer and reflection celebrating their feast day on Saturday, August 9, 2008 (rain or shine).  The theme of the pilgrimage is "Healing: New Life in Christ." As is the rule of monastic life, the day will begin and end with prayer-- Matins at 8:30 am, followed by the celebration of the Divine Liturgy at 9:30 am, and Vespers and Vigil at 5:30 pm.  In addition, a special healing service will be held at approximately 4:15 pm.  Two main presentations will be held in the afternoon--"Perspectives on Healing" with Dr. Demetra Velisarios Jaquet and Fr. Steven Voytovich and "Holy Unction: Human Illness, Healing, and Wellness" given by Rev. Dr. Alkiviadis Calivas.  In addition, the day will include tours of the monastery Churches, a demonstration of the monks' dog program, as well as time for hiking, conversation, reflection and quiet.  Activities for children and teens are also planned. Traditional ethnic and American style food will be available for purchase. For more information (or to be part of the band of volunteers from the area), see the flier on the church bulletin board and/or contact Teva Regule at

ST.  MARY'S ANNIVERSARY - The parish's 80th Anniversary Weekend is scheduled for October 24 - 26, 2008 . Mark your calendars and plan on attending the festivities!  We will have planning meetings for the 80th Anniversary on Thursday, July 31; Thursday, August 21; Thursday, September 11; and Tuesday, October 14, 2008,  beginning at 7:30 p.m., at the home of Mary Winstanley O'Connor, 781 Concord Turnpike in Arlington.  If you plan to attend the meetings please let Mary know.  Also, all who want to be on the committee need to provide their telephone numbers and email addresses to Marilyn Robbat at 617-547-1234 or,  and/or Mary Winstanley O'Connor at 617-523-1010 (work) or

MISSIONS AND EVANGELISM - The 20th Anniversary Orthodox Conference on Mission & Evangelism will be held August 29 - September 1, 2008 at University of California in Santa Barbara . The topic will be "The Bible and Evangelism."  Speakers are  Fr. Peter Gillquest, Fr. Jon Braun, and Fr. Dan Suciu.  Check Church Bulletin Board for more information, or contact 888-968-4014 or

WOMEN'S CLUB SUMMER READING:  This summer Women's Club members (and anyone else who'd like to join us) will be reading The Friday Night Knitting Club by Kate Jacobs, currently #2 on the New York Times best-seller list. Read the book over the summer, and join us Monday, September 29, for an enjoyable evening of discussion,  refreshments and fellowship!

ONE MORE CHANDELIER  - New Chandeliers have been ordered for the Church, and we expect to have them installed by the end of the summer, in plenty of  time for our 80th Anniversary Celebration in October. There will be one large chandelier, which has been donated as a memorial, and six smaller chandeliers, all but one of which have been donated so far.  We are presently looking for someone to donate the one remaining chandelier, plus donations to cover the cost of the electrical work.   Donations can be made through the Bengarri or you can speak with Ray Sayeg or Mary Winstanley O'Connor. 

CELL PHONES FOR SERVICEMEN - The Lebanese-Syrian Ladies Aid Society is sending 150-minute international phone cards to our young people involved in the Iraq-Afghanistan War,  or stationed elsewhere.  If you know of any young people they can help, please provide names, parents' names, addresses and phone numbers.  Please contact Rose Dow 671-323-6883 or Emily Eknoian 617-323-7135.


There are a number of ways you can help the Church, your fellow worshippers and those in need, many of them coordinated by the Fellowship of St. John the Divine.  Consider serving in one of these ways:


Liturgical Service - Each Sunday, members of the congregation are needed to read the Epistle and assist during Communion by holding the Communion Cloths and Holy Bread Baskets.  All Orthodox Christians in the Parish are welcome and encouraged to participate. We usually need one Epistle reader and six people to hold cloths and baskets.  If you would like to read the Epistle or assist during the Communion, please contact Jeff Wasilko, 781-820-0882,

Coffee Hour - People are needed every week to provide coffee, juice and cookies, or more if desired, and set it up Sunday morning. To sign up for an available Sunday, please put your name on the signup sheet on the bulletin board outside the Hall or call Marilyn Robbat in the Parish Office and she will write your name in. If you need any help with figuring out what to bring or do, check the list below the signup sheet (also printed in the Bulletin), or ask Marilyn at or 617-547-1234.


Holy Resurrection Open Doors - The Holy Resurrection Open Door Meal Ministry in Allston needs volunteers every Monday evening (there is a special need in the summer).  The official hours of the project are 4:30pm-7:30pm, but it is fine to come anytime and leave any time.  Best times would be 5:30-5:45 to 7:15-7:30pm.  You can serve meals, coffee and tea to the people who arrive for dinner (6-7pm) or just stay behind the scenes doing set-up and clean-up.  It is a very rewarding, hands-on, face-to-face way to serve the community with (mostly) other Orthodox Christians-we even chant the Our Father together before the meal begins. Church info can be found at  Questions? Please contact Liz (Tutella) Straghalis at  phone 617-974-5005,  or Tiffany Conroy at, 617-990-7162.

St Paul's Food Pantry - Two to four volunteers help each week in the food pantry at St Paul 's Roman Catholic Church in Harvard Square , Saturday mornings from 9:30-11:45.  If you are interested in helping, please contact Christian Alcala at, or (617) 876-5684.


Food and Clothing - St. Paul's Food Pantry in Harvard Square , where volunteers from St. Mary help every Saturday,  depends upon regular donations.  To help, contact Christian Alcala at, or (617) 876-5684.

Holy Resurrection in Allston also takes donations of non-perishable food items and clothing to distribute at the Open Door Ministry on Monday evenings.  You can bring your donations by on Monday nights between 4:30pm and 7:30pm or contact Tiffany Conroy,, 617-990-7162, for more information.

"As you did it to one of the least of these my brethren, you did it to me," says our Lord.



August 2:  


August 3:   Epistle: Bill Coyle;  Left Cloth: Brooke and James Wilcox;  Right Cloth: Erick and Liz Straghalis;  Left Bread: Thomas Marge;  Right Bread: Anthony Marge


August 3:  No coffee hour - no one volunteered


Friday, August 1: Dormition fast begins

Saturday, August 2: No Vespers at St. Mary's

Sunday, August 3Summer hours - Orthros  8:15 am, Divine Liturgy 9:30 am


Epistle:  St. Paul 's Letter to the Romans 15:1-7  May the God of steadfastness and encouragement grant you to live in such harmony with one another, in accord with Christ Jesus, that together you may with one voice glorify the God and Father of your Lord Jesus Christ. Welcome one another, therefore, as Christ has welcomed you, for the glory of God.

Gospel: Matthew 9:27-35  And Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every disease and every infirmity among the people. 

Wednesday, August 6Feast of the Transfiguration (No services at St. Mary)


Saturdays, August 9, 23, and 30:  No Vespers at St. Mary's
Sunday, August 10Summer hours - Orthros  8:15 am, Divine Liturgy 9:30 am
Monday, August 11: Paraclesis for the Dormition of the Theotokos
Wednesday,  August  13: Paraclesis for the Dormition of the Theotokos
Thursday, August 14: Vigil for the Dormition of the Theotokos - Vespers 4:15 p.m.;  Orthros with Lamentations 5:30 p.m.; Divine Liturgy  7:00 p.m.  followed by  Parish Dinner 8:15 p.m. (with prior reservations)
Saturday, August 16:  Great Vespers 5:00 pm
Sunday, August 31:  Last Sunday of summer hours
Sunday, September 7: Church School registration