St. Mary Orthodox Church

Cambridge, MA

Update for the week Thursday, September 8 - Thursday, September 15, 2016


SATURDAY, 9/10 - Great Vespers 5:00 pm

   + Young Adult Potluck dinner following Vespers

SUNDAY, 9/11 Note: parking will be restricted. See “Road Race vs Parking” under New Announcements, below.

   + Orthros 8:45 am, Divine Liturgy 10:00 am, with Procession of the Cross.

   + Please join us after Liturgy in the Hall downstairs to once again welcome students back to the area with a Welcome Back Breakfast  and  to showcase all the different volunteer groups within St. Mary's. Food will be provided by each of the St. Mary groups. 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 this Sunday. The first day of Church School classes will be Sunday, September 18.

MONDAY, 9/12 – Ladies, please consider joining the Women’s Club in the fall. Our first meeting will be Monday at 7:30 in the Hall.  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.

TUESDAY, 9/13 – There will be a Divine Liturgy on Tuesday at 6:30 to celebrate the Feast of the Elevation of the Cross.

THURSDAY, 9/15 - The next meeting of the Bible Study group will be Thursday, September 15 (not September 8, as normally scheduled), at 7:00 pm in the church library. For more information contact Marianna Sayeg ( or Fr. Antony ( The meeting after this will be Thursday, September 29. New members are always welcome.


ROAD RACE vs PARKING - Next Sunday, September 18, the Fall 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 to view the race route.

CHURCH SCHOOL TEACHERS AND ASSISTANTS – Thank You to the following people, who have volunteered to be Church School teachers and assistants for the coming year:

   Pre-K - Larisa Patacchiola/Klorela Alcala

   Kindergarten/Grade 1 - Diana Yousef/ Mike Decerbo

   Grade 2/3 - Andrea Popa/Rose Njuguna

   Grade 4/5 - Natasha Smith/Tom Perkins

   Grade 6 - Marianna Sayeg/Dino Takles

   Grade7/8 - Peter Nassiff

   Discussion Group (Gr. 9-12) – Jack Souweha/Mary Winstanley O’Connor

NEW SKETE FALL RETREAT – You are invited to a retreat at New Skete Monastery on Saturday, October 8.  The theme is Going Deeper on the Contemplative Journey: Tools for Transformation.  You can sign up for the retreat at  If you would like to stay at the monastery for the weekend, contact either Br. Gregory ( for housing at the Emmaus House or Sr. Rebecca ( for housing at the nuns’.  (She is holding spots for the "Boston group from St. Mary’s” at the nuns for the time being; housing at Emmaus House is first come, first served.)  Added benefit:  The grounds of the monastery are incredibly beautiful in the fall - an opportunity to relax, reflect, and enjoy the beauty of God's creation.

HCHC OPEN HOUSE - Hellenic College Holy Cross is holding its Fall Open House on Saturday, October 15. Prospective undergraduates and graduate students are invited along with their parents for a half day of worship, learning and fellowship.  For more information visit

AABA FUND RAISER – The American Arabic Benevolent Association fill hold a fund raiser on Saturday, October 15, at 8:00 pm at Norwood High School. The event will be An Evening with Gina Dimia,  General Seating is $25.  For reservations contact David Franciosa 781-856-0974 or Darya Gamel at

COME SEE THE MESSIAH – Join friends from St. Mary’s for the Handel and Haydn Society’s annual performance of Handel’s Messiah, on Sunday afternoon, November 27, at 3:00 p.m. Tickets are just $25 – even less if we have a big enough group. We will carpool to (or meet at) Symphony Hall after Liturgy and have lunch together at a nearby restaurant before the concert. Those who have done this before have thoroughly enjoyed it - not only do we hear a world-class orchestra and chorus with famous soloists singing glorious words (taken directly from the Bible), but we also have an opportunity to spend time getting to know some fellow parishioners we normally may not encounter. Good seats go fast - please contact Melissa Nassiff at by Sunday, October 16 (in time to order group tickets), or order your own tickets online at


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

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

PARISH COUNCIL – The next meeting of the Parish Council will be Wednesday, September 21, at 7:30 pm.

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

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.

   + There will be a Great Vespers service on Saturday, October 1, at 5:00 pm

THEOPHANY SCHOOL BENEFIT EVENING – Theophany School has helped shape the education of hundreds of children from the Boston area over nearly two decades. This year it will hold its 16th annual Benefit Evening with cocktails, dinner, and a silent auction, on Saturday, October 15, at St. Demetrios Orthodox Church, Weston at 5:00pm. Tickets are $100. To learn more visit   

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

   + 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 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!


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:, 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,

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

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,

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 or 617-547-1234

Prison Ministry: For information about the Prison Ministry at St. Mary you can subscribe to our mailing list at 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, Diana Yousef, Vice President, Michael Decerbo, Treasurer, Socrates Deligeorges, Head Chef

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 to sign up or to learn more!



But far be it from me to glory except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.  For neither circumcision counts for anything, nor uncircumcision, but a new creation.

    - Galatians 6:11-18


The Lord said, “No one has ascended into heaven but He who descended from heaven, the Son of man.  And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of man be lifted up, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.”  For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.  For God sent His Son into the world, not to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through him. 

  - John 3:13-17


A teacher ought to be a stranger to the desire for domination, vain-glory, and pride; one should not be able to fool him by flattery, nor blind him by gifts, nor conquer him by the stomach, nor dominate him by anger; but he should be patient, gentle and humble as far as possible; he must be tested and without partisanship, full of concern, and a lover of souls.

   - Amma Theodora: The sayings of the Desert Fathers

And what is the boast of the Cross? That Christ for my sake took on Him the form of a slave, and bore His sufferings for me the slave, the enemy, the unfeeling one; yea, He so loved me as to give Himself up to a curse for me. What can be comparable to this?

   - St. John Chrysostom

Truly this symbol [the cross] is thought despicable; but it is so in the world's reckoning, and among men; in Heaven and among the faithful it is the highest glory.

   - St. John Chrysostom, Homilies on Galations

How is the fullness of God’s glory achieved in each one of us? If what I do and say is for the glory of God, my words and deeds are full of God’s glory; if my plans and undertakings are for the glory of God, if my food and drink and all my actions are for the glory of God, then it is to me also that the words are addressed: "The earth is full of His glory."

   - Origen, Homilies on the Visions of Isaiah

Glory is like the human shadow: if you follow it, it runs away: if you run away, it follows.

   - St. Martin of Braga