St. Mary Orthodox Church

Cambridge, MA

Update for the week Thursday, July 7 - Thursday, July 14, 2016

THIS WEEK AT ST. MARY'S

SUNDAY, 7/10 - IMPORTANT!!!- This Sunday July 10, the Summer Classic 5K road race will restrict access to parking around the church and behind the Post Office.  The race starts at 9:30am.  The end of Inman St. will be closed off to accommodate runners on Massachusetts Ave. until approximately 10:30am.  Traffic will be diverted on Inman but if you advise the police officers that you are attending services at St. Mary’s they will let you down Inman to the church only (you will not be able to get onto Mass. Ave). Please plan accordingly. Log on to http://classic5k.com/summer-classic to view the race route.

   + Orthros 8:45 am, Divine Liturgy 10:00 am.

THURSDAY, 7/14 - The Bible Study group will meet on Thursday, July 14, at 7:00 pm in the church library. The next meeting will be Thursday, July 28. For more information contact Marianna Sayeg (mksayeg@gmail.com) or Fr. Antony (frawhj@gmail.com). New members are always welcome.

NEW ANNOUNCEMENTS

DORMITION FAST – The fast in preparation for the Feast of the Dormition of the Theotokos begins Monday, August 1 and continues through Sunday, August 14.

ORTHODOX YOUNG PROFESSIONALS - The Orthodox Young Professionals Conference is a four day conference hosted by the Young Adult Ministry of the Antiochian Archdiocese. Young Orthodox Christians from across the country and all jurisdictions are invited to join together in fellowship and fun. The conference committee has been working since 2015 to plan an amazing opportunity for spiritual growth, future friendships, lasting memories and more. The gathering will be held in New Orleans at the Drury Inn and Suites, from Thursday-Sunday, August 18-21, 2016.

   A Young Professional is a young adult who is beyond the college years navigating through the daily struggles of life as an Orthodox Christian in their mid-twenties through thirties. Visit the Website:  http://www.oypc2016.com

REMINDERS

TANGLEWOOD OUTING – Join your music-loving friends from St. Mary’s as we carpool out to Tanglewood after Liturgy on Sunday, July 24, 2016. We’ll picnic on the lawn and listen to music by Ginastera, Mozart and Beethoven, featuring violinist Veronika Eberle, with the Boston Symphony Orchestra conducted by Juanjo Mena. For more information see https://www.bso.org/Performance/Detail/77811. The concert starts at 2:30; lawn tickets are $21.00 - pay at the door; children are free. Bring lawn chairs if you want them, and picnic food for yourself and to share.  For more information and to let us know you're coming, especially if you'll need a ride, contact Melissa Nassiff by email (mnassiff@gmail.com) or phone (508 877-7483).

TRANSFIGURATION – Vespers and Divine Liturgy for the Feast of the Transfiguration will be held at St. Mary’s on Friday, August 5 at 6:30pm

NEW SKETE PILGRIMAGE – The annual New Skete Pilgrimage is set for Saturday, August 6 this year - Transfiguration.  This year is extra special as they will be celebrating their 50th Anniversary! (Metropolitan Tikhon will be there.)  In years past, a number of St. Mary people have gone out for the weekend to help the Communities with this event - to be extra sets of "helping hands" for the day.  They are hoping a number of us will do so again this year. In the past, this has been a wonderful community building activity for all of us.  Moreover, if you have never been to the monastery, this may be a good way to be introduced to their life and work.  In addition to the services, there are tours of the church and talks by various members of the communities about their lives.  There are also the dogs, great hiking trails, nearby tubing, etc.  Once again, Teva Regule (teva@mit.edu) will be coordinating the Boston helpers and as much housing as she can. (In particular, any women wanting to "camp out" at the nuns’, let her know.  The Emmaus house is now a guest house - anyone wishing to stay there should contact Br. Gregory directly at brgregory@newskete.org

DORMITION – There will be a Paraclesis service for the Dormition of the Theotokos on Wednesday, August 10, at 6:30 pm. (The actual Feast of the Dormition is August 15, but there will be no service on that date at St. Mary’s.)

VESPERS – While monthly Saturday Vespers will not be held at St. Mary’s on the first Saturday of July and August, as announced previously, note that there will be a Great Vespers service on Saturday, August 13.

FEED MY STARVING CHILDREN - On Thursday-Saturday, August 18-20 at St. George Orthodox Cathedral in Worcester volunteers from all over the Diocese will be measuring and scooping 100,000 meals of MannaPack Rice, a scientifically formulated food that is culturally acceptable worldwide, for starving children.  Organizations in nearly 70 countries distribute these meals to children in greatest need.   We need 500 volunteers on that day as well as donations to help meet the $22,000 goal for the cost of the MobilePack Rice.  This Humanitarian project is being conducted in conjunction with Feed My Starving Children (FMSC) a Christian non-profit organization committed to feeding God’s children hungry in body and spirit. 

   •        Volunteers - Registration will be live 6 weeks prior to the event at www.fmsc.org/mobilepack

   •        Donations - Donate online at www.fmsc.org/mobilepack. Also, checks made out to FMSC, Memo line Mobil Pack #1608-054, can be given at the Bengarri or church office.

   Please consider volunteering and/or making a donation to this worthy cause. If you would like to learn more you can contact Fr. Milad Selim at St. George Worcester 508-752-9150 or fr.milad.selim@gmail.com

CHURCH SCHOOL TEACHERS NEEDED – Two new teachers will be needed next fall for the Grade 2-3 class. Please contact Barbara Shoop at barbara@dsaarchitects.com to volunteer or to learn more.

RIDES TO CHURCH FOR COLLEGE STUDENTS - Do you live near a college or university? Are you able to offer a ride to and from St. Mary Church for a student? Are you a college student in need of a ride? Contact St. Mary’s Young Adult Ministry at 617-564-3344 or rides@stmaryorthodoxchurch.org to sign up or to learn more!

COFFEE HOUR MADE EASY! - To make sponsoring a Coffee Hour a little bit easier, St. Mary’s will be offering a delivery service through “Instacart”, for the basic foods necessary to host a Coffee hour.  Simply select a date, mail a check to the office and we will order the food and have it delivered to the church on that Sunday between 9:00 and 10:00 am.  You will need to be at the church to accept the order and you will be required to set up for the coffee hour and clean up both the kitchen and hall at the end of the coffee hour.  Two menus will be offered.  Menu one will include: bagels, mini muffins, fruit, hummus/Syrian bread, juice and coffee for $160.  Menu two will include: bagels, juice and coffee for $70. Prices DO NOT include a 20% tip for delivery and are subject to change based on current market pricing of items.  Cream cheese, peanut butter, jam and coffee creamer are included with each menu.  As usual, St. Mary’s will provide the plates, cups, napkins, utensils, serving platters, and sweetener for coffee.  If you are interested in taking advantage of this service and signing up for a coffee hour please contact the office at 617-547-1234 or e-mail secretary@stmaryorthodoxchurch.org.

   + In addition to the sign-up sheet, our contact Barbara in the church office and the Instacart option, we also have LINDA ARNOLD serving as our volunteer Coffee Hour Coordinator. Her contact information is MMarmee52@aol.com and 978-270-0346.  Please feel free to let her know of your interest and be open to hosting a coffee hour especially if you have not done so in the past.  She will be happy to guide you through the process!

SCRIPTURE READINGS FOR THIS SUNDAY

   Epistle: 

Timothy, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus; and what you have heard from me before many witnesses entrust to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.  Share in suffering as a good soldier of Christ Jesus.  No soldier on service gets entangled in civilian pursuits, since his aim is to satisfy the one who enlisted him.  An athlete is not crowned unless he competes according to the rules.  It is the hard-working farmer who ought to have the first share of the crops.  Think over what I say, for the Lord will grant you understanding in everything.  Remember Jesus Christ, risen from the dead, descended from David, as preached in my gospel, the gospel for which I am suffering and wearing fetters like a criminal.  But the word of God is not fettered.  Therefore, I endure everything for the sake of the elect, that they also may obtain salvation in Christ Jesus with its eternal glory.

   - 2 Timothy 2:1-10

   Gospel: 

The Lord said, “The eye is the lamp of the body.  So, if your eye is sound, your whole body will be full of light; but if your eye is evil, your whole body will be full of darkness.  If then the light in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!  No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other.  You cannot serve God and mammon.  Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you shall eat or what you shall drink; nor about your body, what you shall put on.  Is not the soul more than food, and the body more than clothing?  Look at the birds of heaven: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them.  Are you not of more value than they?  And which of you by being anxious can add one cubit to his stature?  And why are you anxious about clothing?  Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they neither toil nor spin; yet I tell you, even Solomon himself in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.  But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O men of little faith?  Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’  For the Gentiles seek all these things; and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all.  But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things shall be yours as well.”

  - Matthew 6:22-33

REFLECTION

It is good to hold fast to the principal commandment, and not to be anxious about particular things or to pray for them specifically, but to seek only the kingdom and the word of God (cf. Mt 6:25-33). If, however, we are still anxious about our particular needs, we should also pray for each of them. He who does or plans anything without prayer will not succeed in the end. And this is what the Lord meant when He said: "Without Me you can do nothing" (Jn 15:5).

   - Saint Kosmas Aitolos

Human beings have accumulated in their coffers gold and silver, clothes more sumptuous than useful, diamonds and other objects that are evidence of war and tyranny; then a foolish arrogance hardens their hearts; for their brothers in distress, no pity. What utter blindness! . . . Attend not to the law of the strong but to the law of the Creator. Help nature to the best of your ability, honor the freedom of creation, protect your species from dishonor, come to its aid in sickness, rescue it from poverty... Seek to distinguish yourself from others only in your generosity. Be like gods to the poor, imitating God's mercy. Humanity has nothing so much in common with God as the ability to do good.

   - St. Gregory Nazianzen, On Love of the Poor

God is truth and light. God’s judgment is nothing else than our coming into contact with truth and light. In the day of the Great Judgment all men will appear naked before this penetrating light of truth. The ‘books’ will be opened. What are these ‘books’? They are our hearts. Our hearts will be opened by the penetrating light of God, and what is in these hearts will be revealed. If in those hearts there is love for God, those hearts will rejoice in seeing God’s light. If, on the contrary, there is hatred for God in those hearts, these men will suffer by receiving on their opened hearts this penetrating light of truth which they detested all their life.

   - St. Symeon the New Theologian

Brethren, let us be prepared for the day of temptation, well girded and armed, but let us not hope in our own preparation, but in the Lord.

    - Bishop Nikolai Velimirovich, The Prologue from Ohrid