St. Mary Orthodox Church

Cambridge, MA

Update for the week of October 19 - 26, 2017


SUNDAY 10/22 – Enquirers’ Class 9:00 am, Orthros 8:45, Divine Liturgy 10:00; Church School lesson 5
   + If you wish to serve on the Parish Council please speak to Mary Winstanley O’Connor or Fr. Antony by this Sunday.
   + If you want to go to the Messiah concert on Sunday afternoon, December 3, at 3:00 p.m with a group from St. Mary, please contact Melissa Nassiff at by this Sunday, in time to order group tickets.

WEDNESDAY 10/25 - The next meeting of the Parish Council will be Wednesday, October 25 at the church.

THURSDAY 10/26 - Bible Study will meet in the Sanctuary of the church every other Thursday at 7:00pm.  At next Thursday’s meeting we will discuss the podcasts found at and Everyone is welcome to attend. Contact Steve Walker at  or Ioana Popa at for more information.  Note: The church parking lot is rented until 8:00pm. We are allowed to park in open parking spaces only; we cannot stack park or block anyone.

FRIDAY 10/20 - SUNDAY, 10/22 – St. George West Roxbury is having their annual Bazaar and Food Fair this Friday through Sunday – Friday and Saturday from 10:00am to 9:00pm, Sunday from 12:00pm to 3:00pm. Admission is free. Middle Eastern cuisine and pastries, baked foods, country store, kids corner, photo booth

SATURDAY, 10/21 St. George Cathedral, Worcester will hold a Hafli to benefit the Church of the Prophet Elijah Al-Samiriyah in Lebanon, on Saturday.  Doors open at 8:30pm, Mazza & Dinner at 9:30pm.  Tickets: $40-$60.  More information:

   + You are invited to an “Oldies Dinner Dance”, to benefit the St. George Norwood Building Fund. Event will be held at the Norwood Sportsman’s Club on Saturday, 6:30-11:00pm.  Dinner, DJ, Cash Bar and Trivia. Tickets sold in advance, $25. Contact 508-488-0347 for tickets.

TEEN SOYO OFFICERS – Congratulations to the newly elected officers of Teen SOYO:  Co-Presidents Andrew Bargoot & Gabrielle Mazzoni, Secretary Amanuel Kassa, and Treasurer Malek Abdellas

THANK YOU - The Teens would like to thank all those who contributed to the collection for Special Olympics.  Your generosity was overwhelming.

COFFEE HOUR VOLUNTEERS URGENTLY NEEDED – Please volunteer to provide a coffee hour – it can be as simple as coffee, juice, and cookies.  Many upcoming Sundays are available.    Signup sheets are on the bulletin board downstairs outside the Hall, or call the Church Office at 617-547-1234, or email .  

WOMEN’S CLUB – The next meeting of the Women’s Club will be on Wednesday, November 15, at 7:30.

NATIVITY FAST – The Nativity Fast, also known as the season of Advent, begins Wednesday, November 15. This is the forty days of fasting and prayer in preparation for the Great Feast of the Nativity of Christ.

THANKSGIVING BAKE SALE – The annual Thanksgiving Charity Bake Sale, sponsored by the Women’s Club, will be held on Sunday, November 19 after Liturgy. All proceeds to benefit the Convent of Saidnaya, in Syria.

OCTOBER IS YOUTH MONTH – During the Month of October, at St. Mary and throughout the archdiocese, our teens will be taking an active role in the Liturgy.

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, December 3, at 3:00 p.m.  Tickets are just $28 (not $25 as announced earlier). 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 22 (in time to order group tickets).

SFEEHA SALE - The Women’s Club is offering for purchase freshly made Sfeeha (ground lamb-meat pizza pies with onion, pine nuts & seasonings).   Everything is cooked with the finest of ingredients and ready to eat now or freeze for the holidays! This product contains pine nuts; no special orders will be accepted.  Please use the order form in the Sunday bulletin, or contact the church office for a copy.  Order deadline (for waitlist only) is next Sunday, October 29.  Pick-Up Date is Sunday, November 5. 

HELP MAKE SFEEHA – Please come to the church on Saturday morning, November 4, starting at 9:30 am, to help make meat pies with the Women's Club.   Lots of help will be needed – young and old, women and men are all welcome – and it's always lots of fun. Lunch is provided.

CHANTERS, VESPERS, YOUNG ADULTS – On Saturday, November 4, Chant Class will be at 3:30 and Great Vespers at 5:00 pm, followed by Young Adult Fellowship Night. Join the Young Adults for a Coffee House with live music. To learn more or to get involved, send an email to or call/text Jamil (617-501-4427)

SPAGHETTI DINNER – Our Teen SOYO invites you to a Spaghetti Dinner on Sunday, November 5, following Liturgy. The menu will include Spaghetti, Meatballs (Just before the Fast!), Salad, Bread, Dessert and Coffee/Beverage. A suggested donation of $5.00 per person will be greatly appreciated (no charge for Teen SOYO members).

ANGEL TREE – St. Mary's will once again be participating in the Angel Tree Prison Ministry, which provides Christmas gifts to children in our local community on behalf of their parent serving time in prison.  There will be a table set up during coffee hour on Sunday, November 5 where you can select a child to support. Thank you for helping with this important ministry! Please see or email Linda or Kate Arnold ( if you can help or have questions. 

BAZAAR - St. John of Damascus will be holding their Annual Bazaar, Friday through Sunday, November 3-5:  Fri. 12pm-9pm, Sat. 10am-9pm and Sunday 12pm- 2pm, 300 West St. , Dedham. Middle Eastern Cuisine, Country Store, Christmas Corner and More. 

FALL LITURGY RETREAT – We will have a Fall Liturgy Retreat for Church School Students and Families at St. Mary’s on Friday, November 10 from 9:30 - 3:00. (This is the observed day for Veteran's Day, when most students have the day off of school and some adults from work.) The theme of the retreat will be Liturgy as Healing: The Power of Reconciliation in Christ. Watch for more details.
th annual Benefit for Theophany School will be held Saturday, November 11, at 5:00pm at St. John of Damascus Church, Dedham. The evening includes cocktails, dinner and entertainment. The benefit defrays the cost of tuition by approximately $1000 per student, helping to provide families with excellent, affordable Orthodox education. To become a sponsor or to reserve tickets please contact the Director, Marybeth at 781-444-3058 or 
AWARDS BANQUET – The Nicholas G. Beram Veterans Association will be holding its 71
st anniversary celebration and 51st Scholastic Achievement Awards Banquet on Saturday, November 25, 2017 from Noon to 4:00 p.m. at the Holiday Inn Dedham.  This year our own Father Antony will be honored and receive the distinguished service award.  Lukas Nahass and Jessica Winstanley will also be receiving scholastic achievement awards.  Tickets for the luncheon are $30.00 and tables of eight may be reserved.  You may also honor Father by placing an ad in the program book.  Luncheon reservation and ad book forms are available in the narthex.

FOOD FOR HUNGRY PEOPLE – Help support our Canned Food Drive! From October through December 31, 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.

COFFEE HOUR MADE EASY! - To make sponsoring a Coffee Hour a little bit easier, St. Mary’s offers 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 their hatred of our souls, the demons sometimes prompt others to pay us empty compliments, and thus cause us to grow slack because we are praised. If as a result we give way to conceit and self-esteem, our enemies have no difficulty in taking us prisoner.
   - St. John of Karpathos

The potency of prayer has subdued the strength of fire; it hath bridled the rage of lions, hushed anarchy to rest, extinguished wars, appeased the elements, expelled demons, burst the chains of death, expanded the gates of heaven, assuaged diseases, repelled frauds, rescued cities from destruction, stayed the sun in its course, and arrested the progress of the thunderbolt.
   - St. John Chrysostom

We should wage this spiritual warfare with a precise sequence: first, with attentiveness; then, when we perceive the hostile thought attacking, we should strike at it angrily in the heart, cursing it as we do so; thirdly, we should direct our prayer against it, concentrating the heart through the invocation of Jesus Christ, so that the demonic fantasy may be dispersed at once, the intellect no longer pursuing it like a child deceived by some conjuror.
   - St.Hesychius the Priest