St. Mary Orthodox Church

Cambridge, MA

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

THIS WEEK AT ST. MARY'S

SATURDAY, 12/10 - Please join us this Saturday, from 5:00-6:30pm, for our annual Western Rite Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols. This year we are pleased to welcome guest choir Belle Voci, of Orlando Florida. They will be joined by a brass choir and the Diocesan choir. For more information about the program, contact Kailen Hodge, kailen.hodge@gmail.com . The service will be followed by a festive potluck supper. Please contribute! People whose last names begin with A-P, please bring a main dish or salad. People whose last name begins with Q-Z please bring desert. Drinks will be provided.. To confirm your contribution or ask questions about the potluck, contact Diana Yousef (dymartinek@gmail.com).

SUNDAY, 12/11 – Orthros 8:45 am, Divine Liturgy 10:00 am; Church School lesson 11

   + Enquirers’ Class 9:00 am in the library (next door to Fr. Antony’s office).

   + Christmas Pageant rehearsal #2 during coffee hour 

   + Deadline for Nativity flower donations

WEDNESDAY, 12/14 - The next meeting of the Parish Council will be Wednesday, December 14, at 7:30pm

THURSDAY, 12/15 - The Bible Study group will meet next Thursday, December 15, at 7:00 pm in the church library. For more information contact Fr. Antony (frawhj@gmail.com). The meeting after this will be three weeks later: Thursday, January 5, 2017. New members are always welcome.

NEW ANNOUNCEMENTS

CAMBRIDGE FIRE –  If you would like to help those displaced by last week’s massive fire in Cambridge, donations may be made to the Mayor’s Fire Relief Fund at www.cambridgema.gov/FireFund 

PARISH COUNCIL BALLOTS - Parish Council ballots were mailed in mid-November.  Please choose up to five candidates and return your ballot to the church office ASAP.

NATIVITY SERVICES – Royal Hours for the Nativity will be held on Friday, December 23 at 9:00 am

   + Saturday, December 24, Eve of the Nativity – Great Vespers 10:00 am; Festal Orthros 6:30 pm, and Festal Divine Liturgy of St. Basil at 8:00 pm. 

   + Sunday, December 25, Christmas Day - No services at St. Mary    

THEOPHANY – There will be a Joint Diocesan Celebration of Theophany at St. John of Damascus, Dedham, on Thursday, January 5, 2017. Orthros 5:00 pm, Hierarchical Divine Liturgy 6:00 pm with the Blessing of the Waters. No services at St. Mary.

REMINDERS

CHURCH SCHOOL CHRISTMAS PAGEANT - If your child is interested in participating in the Christmas Pageant this year, please see Sarah Byrne-Martelli.  We also need parents to assist at all rehearsals.  Dress Rehearsal, if necessary:  Saturday, December. 17, 2:30 – 4:30pm. The Pageant will be Sunday, December 18 after liturgy.

TEEN SOYO CD - Grace Shining Forth, a new music CD featuring Teen SOYO members in attendance at the Sacred Music Institute’s Youth Music Ministry (YMM), will be available during Coffee Hour this Sunday – see Charlie Marge. It is also available for order now in the SOYO Shop https://TeenSOYO.org/Shop .  Also available for digital download on CDBaby.com later in December. More information here: https://teensoyo.org/Music/

FOOD FOR HUNGRY PEOPLE – Our Canned Food Drive will go through December 31, 2016. Bring in canned goods and place them in the plastic bins in the room outside the kitchen. (Canned goods only, please.) They will be distributed to food pantries in our area.

WOMEN’S CLUB - The next meeting of the Women’s Club will be Monday, February 6, 2017 at the church. 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.

AABA VILLAGE - Applications are available for Market Value, Tax Credit and Section 8 apartments in AABA Village in West Roxbury.   Please call Tom Chapman or Dorothy McNerny at 617-325-1913 and an application will be mailed out.

REFLECTION

For as the Father called the Gentiles to the Church, saying: "I will call her My People which was not my people, and her Beloved who was not beloved"; and elsewhere: "My house shall be called a house of prayer for all nations," so, too, the Lord Jesus said that Paul was chosen by Him to call forth and gather together the Church, as you find it said by the Lord Jesus to Ananias: "Go, for he is a chosen vessel unto Me to bear My name before all nations."

   - St. Ambrose of Milan, On the Holy Spirit, Book II.

Love never hates anyone, never reproves anyone, never condemns anyone, never grieves anyone, never abhors anyone, neither faithful nor infidel nor stranger nor sinner nor fornicator, nor anyone impure, but instead it is precisely sinners, and weak and negligent souls that it loves more, …, imitating Christ Who called sinners, and ate and drank with them.

   - Abba Ammonas

...And if by grace, it will be said, how did we not all come to be saved? Because you refused. For grace, even though it be grace, saves the willing, not those who will not have it, and turn away from it, those who persist in fighting against it, and opposing themselves to it.

   - St. John Chrysostom, Homily on Romans