St. Mary Orthodox Church

Cambridge, MA

Update for the week Thursday, August 25 - Thursday, September 1, 2016

THIS WEEK AT ST. MARY'S

THURSDAY, 8/25 - The Bible Study group will meet tonight, Thursday, 8/25, at 7:00 pm in the church library. For more information contact Marianna Sayeg (mksayeg@gmail.com) or Fr. Antony (frawhj@gmail.com). The meeting after this will be Thursday, September 15 (not September 8, as normally scheduled). New members are always welcome.

SUNDAY, 8/28 - Orthros 8:45 am, Divine Liturgy 10:00 am.

THURSDAY, 9/1 – On the first day of September we begin a new liturgical year. Happy New Year!

NEW ANNOUNCEMENTS

DONATE TO FEED MY STARVING CHILDREN – Last weekend at the Cathedral in Worcester, volunteers from all over the Diocese were measuring and scooping 100,000 meals of MannaPack Rice for starving children.  This humanitarian project is 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.

   If you couldn’t take part at the cathedral you can still help by making a donation - donate online at www.fmsc.org/mobilepack or write a check made out to FMSC, with memo line Mobil Pack #1608-054, and give it at the Bengarri or the church office.

BECOMING TRULY HUMAN WORKSHOP – A Becoming Truly Human Workshop will be held here at St. Mary’s on Saturday, September 17 from 9:00am-3:00pm, Breakfast and Lunch included. The Becoming Truly Human program of the Antiochian Archdiocese is an outreach program. The program includes the first American Orthodox feature film and offers a refreshing and honest approach to evangelism. This workshop is being held to train parishes on how to implement the program. Registration is $45 per person for all jurisdictions.  For details and registration visit www.becomingtrulyhuman.com

YOUNG ADULT HIKE – The Young Adult Ministry will sponsor a hike at Walden Pond after Liturgy on Sunday, September 25.

FR. ANTONY TO BE AWAY – Fr. Anatony and Kh. Carol will be out of town for a week, beginning Monday, August 29. In case of emergency, please call Fr. Timothy Ferguson at 617-323-0323, or the church office.

SPIRITUALITY WORKSHOP - On Saturday, October 1 St. Mary's will be hosting a workshop on Orthodox Spirituality entitled "Going Within (And What to Do Once You Get There)." Under the guidance of Fr. Antony we will be utilizing the skills of the psychiatrists, therapists, licensed clinical social workers and hospice chaplains who are members of our parish and who will facilitate small group discussions.

     The mindfulness-based therapies our facilitators practice dovetail beautifully with Orthodox spirituality and it is our hope that those who attend the workshop will deepen both their understanding of and life of prayer.  The two therapeutic modalities we will examine in the light of Orthodox Life are the Internal Family Systems Model and Mindful Self Compassion Therapy.

     Attendance will be limited to no more than 26 parishioners, so if you are interested, please let Fr. Antony know as soon as possible. In case the 26 spots are not filled, we will open the remaining places for interested others. The workshop will begin in the morning of October 1 and end in the late afternoon. More details will be forthcoming.

THANK YOU - Thanks to all those who have volunteered to help teach and assist with the Church School.  We have now been able to fill the 2/3 grade teacher position.  We look forward to working with all the wonderful teachers, assistants and substitutes in the upcoming year.

THEOPHANY SCHOOL BENEFIT EVENING – Theophany School will hold a Benefit Evening with special recognition of their Co-Founders on Sunday, October 16, at St. Demetrios Orthodox Church, Weston at 4:00pm. Tickets $100.  To learn more visit www.theophanyschool.org/benefit.  

REMINDERS

NO VESPERS – There will not be a Vespers service at St. Mary’s on Saturday, September 3.

NATIVITY OF THE THEOTOKOS – We will have a Divine Liturgy for the Feast of the Nativity of the Theotokos on Wednesday, September 7, at 6:30pm.

VESPERS AND YOUNG ADULT POTLUCK – On Saturday, September 10, there will be a Great Vespers service, followed by a Young Adult Potluck dinner.

WELCOME BACK BREAKFAST - Please join us Sunday, September 11 after Liturgy in the Hall downstairs to once again welcome students back to the area after summer and to showcase all the different volunteer groups within St. Mary's. Julie Wasilko will contact each group's leader soon to coordinate the breakfast sign-up. Please wear your collegiate colors to Church on that Sunday, if you have any, to help the college community feel welcome!

   + Also, Church School Registration for new students, and for children who have reached the age of 3, will be held on Sunday, September 11. The first day of Church School classes will be Sunday, September 18.

WOMEN’S CLUB – Ladies, please consider joining the Women’s Club in the fall. Our first meeting will be Monday, September 12, at 7:30 at the church.  At this meeting we will formulate our yearly calendar so come with any ideas you may have.  We meet only once a month.  We welcome all women of the parish to join us!  The Women’s Club does charitable work both locally, nationally and internationally and supports the Church School.   Call Marilyn (781-729-3033) or the church office (617-547-1234) if you have any questions or want to be a part of this wonderful group of Women.

ELEVATION OF THE CROSS – There will be a Divine Liturgy on Tuesday, September 13, at 6:30 to celebrate the Feast of the Elevation of the Cross.

SONIA’S RUN – The 8th Annual Sonia’s 5K Run/Walk and fall fair will be held at St. George Orthodox Church, West Roxbury, MA, on Saturday, September 17. The 5k road race benefits the Theophany School in honor of our beloved friend Sonia Belcher. The proceeds from Sonia's Run go towards Theophany School's "Building on a Dream" campaign, to fulfill Sonia's Dream of a permanent home for Theophany School.  Be a sponsor, volunteer or vendor. For more information and how you can help visit the website http://www.soniasrun.org.

ORTHODOX SPIRITUALITY WORKSHOP - On Saturday, October 1 St. Mary's will be hosting a workshop on Orthodox Spirituality entitled "Going Within (And What to Do Once You Get There)." Under the guidance of Fr. Antony we will be utilizing the skills of the psychiatrists, therapists, licensed clinical social workers and hospice chaplains who are members of our parish and who will facilitate small group discussions.

   The mindfulness-based therapies our facilitators practice dovetail beautifully with Orthodox spirituality and it is our hope that those who attend the workshop will deepen both their understanding of and life of prayer.  The two therapeutic modalities we will examine in the light of Orthodox Life are the Internal Family Systems Model and Mindful Self Compassion Therapy.

   Attendance will be limited to no more than 26 parishioners, so if you are interested, please let Fr. Antony know as soon as possible. In case the 26 spots are not filled, we will open the remaining places for interested others. The workshop will begin in the morning of October 1 and end in the late afternoon. More details will be forthcoming.

PART TIME POSITIONS AVAILABLE:

   - A family is seeking a reliable person to drive their daughter (5 years old) on week-day mornings from their home in Cambridge to the Park School (down the street from Hellenic College). Candidates should have their own car and a clean driving record. They should also genuinely like children, be responsible and conscientious, and have excellent communication skills. For details on dates and time, compensation, and job qualifications & requirements, contact Diana Yousef (dymartinek@gmail.com).

   - A Cambridge family is seeking a part-time (or full-time) nanny for their 2 daughters (5.5yr, 8mo). Candidates should have a car and clean driving record. We are looking for someone very loving, energetic, dynamic, creative and an educator at heart. Must have good references, strong prior experience, and excellent communication skills. Ideally, we would like a fluent Spanish-speaker. Major responsibilities include: planning and engaging our children in educational, fun activities and play-dates; school pick-up; driving to/from activities; some meal-prep and light housework; some errands. For details on dates and time, compensation, and job qualifications & requirements, contact Diana Yousef (dymartinek@gmail.com).

COFFEE HOUR MADE EASY! - To make sponsoring a Coffee Hour a little bit easier, St. Mary’s is 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!

OPPORTUNITIES FOR SERVICE

There are a number of ways you can help the Church, your fellow worshippers, and those in need.  Consider serving in one of these ways:

Greeter: Welcome people into the church and help to direct visitors upstairs to the Liturgy, as well as keeping an eye on the vestibule, hallways and entrance ways during Church. To volunteer contact Buddy Mabardy at 781-729-6303 or e-mail: buddy@cjmabardy.com, or call the church office at 617-547-1234

Liturgical Service – Epistle: The Epistle is read each Sunday by a volunteer parishioner. To volunteer please contact Jeff Wasilko, jeffw@smoe.org

Liturgical Service – Procession: Church School children or parishioners carry the candles, icon, and bread baskets in the Great Procession. For information about this ministry contact Teva Regule at teva@mit.edu

Liturgical Service – Communion: Volunteers are needed every Sunday to hold the Communion cloths and the Holy Bread baskets during Communion. To volunteer please contact Jeff Wasilko, jeffw@smoe.org

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 contact Barbara Shoop in the Parish Office at secretary@stmaryorthodoxchurch.org or 617-547-1234

Prison Ministry: For information about the Prison Ministry at St. Mary you can subscribe to our mailing list at http://groups.google.com/group/ocpm-concord. If you are interested in helping with this ministry, talk with Fr. Antony or Deacon Jeff. Another way to help is to donate Orthodox books, icon cards, and magazines (for security, please remove any personal mailing address) – Mitrophan Chin collects these to share with the inmates.

Hospitality Group: St. Mary's Donald D. Fiore Hospitality Group sponsors various events to welcome visitors and newcomers and to foster a spirit of fellowship and caring among all the people who worship here. To join us or to find out more, contact any of our officers: Julie Wasilko, President julie31415pi@gmail.com, Diana Yousef, Vice President dymartinek@gmail.com, Michael Decerbo, Treasurer michaeldecerbo@gmail.com, Socrates Deligeorges, Head Chef dr.socrates@gmail.com

Choir: The St. Mary Church Choir is open to individuals interested in making a commitment to sing each Sunday at Divine Liturgy. Please feel free to join them and/or introduce yourself to the director, Michelle Mabardy, any Sunday after Liturgy.

Rides To Church For College Students: If you live near a college or university and are able to offer a ride to and from St. Mary Church for a student, or if you are a 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!

SCRIPTURE READINGS FOR THIS SUNDAY

   Epistle: 

… To the present hour we hunger and thirst, we are ill-clad and buffeted and homeless, and we labor, working with our own hands. When reviled, we bless; when persecuted, we endure; when slandered, we try to conciliate; we have become, and are now, as the refuse of the world, the off-scouring of all things. … I urge you, then, be imitators of me.

   - 1 Corinthians 4:9-16

   Gospel: 

At that time, a man came up to Him and kneeling before Him said, "Lord, have mercy on my son, for he is an epileptic and he suffers terribly; for often he falls into the fire, and often into the water. And I brought him to Your disciples, and they could not heal him." And Jesus answered, "O faithless and perverse generation, how long am I to be with you? How long am I to bear with you? Bring him here to me." And Jesus rebuked him, and the demon came out of him, and the boy was cured instantly. Then the disciples came to Jesus privately and said, "Why could we not cast it out?" He said to them, "Because of your little faith. For truly I say to you, if you have faith as a grain of mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, 'Move hence to yonder place,' and it will move; and nothing will be impossible to you. But this kind never comes out except by prayer and fasting."…

  - Matthew 17:14-23

REFLECTION

All the stars in the heavens could be more easily counted than all the miracles worked on earth by prayer.

   - St. Nicholai of Zica

The whole warfare of the demons against us is waged with the one purpose of alienating those who obey them from the glory of God and the grace of the Holy Spirit. But, as I see it, we have already deprived ourselves of such a gift before they even attack us, because we have forsaken the commandments of God and have not been eager to seek Him with all our soul. Had we sought Him we should not have lived so idly and carelessly! …. Had we striven for things eternal we should not thus have pursued things temporal. Had we loved God we should not thus have turned away from those who guide us to Him. … Had we fought to gain control over our passions we should not have given ourselves unrestrainedly to pleasures. Had we a right and firm faith we should not have performed the works of faithlessness. ... Had we been found worthy to attain true love we should have known God.

   - St. Simeon the New Theologian, The Discourses

The believer will open his mind to the truth on condition that it fits in with his preconceived ideas and wishes.  Faith, on the other hand, is an unreserved opening of the mind to the truth, whatever it may turn out to be.  Faith has no preconceptions; it is a plunge into the unknown.  Belief clings, but faith lets go.  In this sense of the word, faith is the essential virtue of science, and likewise of any religion that is not self-deception.

   - Alan Watts, The Wisdom Of Insecurity

He who truly loves God is devoted to His holy will; and no matter what might befall him, he accepts everything, as from the hand of God, with the firm faith that all this serves to his spiritual benefit. For the soul that is devoted to God, the misfortunes that befall it in this life serve as steps leading it up to perfection.

   - St. John Climacus

God's purpose in urging us to pray without growing weary is that prayer progressively brings about an essential day-to-day change in us. Prayer must be made with constant zeal in order that we should be changed into something higher than our nature.

   - Father Matthew the Poor, Orthodox Prayer Life: The Interior Way