St. Mary Orthodox Church

Cambridge, MA

Update for the week Thursday, January 10 – Wednesday, January 16, 2019

THIS WEEK AT ST. MARY’S

SATURDAY 1/12 – Chant Class at 4:00pm and Great Vespers at 5:00pm, followed by Young Adult Fellowship Night with guest speaker Fr. Maximos Constas, a pizza dinner, and Paint Night. (More info: https://www.facebook.com/events/2115781295402610/ )

SUNDAY 1/13 - Orthros 8:45am, Enquirers’ Class 9:00am; Divine Liturgy 10:00am, with Church School following   
   + “Love Until the End”, a documentary of the life of St. Maria of Paris, will be shown during coffee hour. Mother Maria was a Russian Aristocrat, a poet and an intellectual, whose transformation to a Saint became a symbol of unconditional love and sacrifice.

WEDNESDAY 1/16 - The next Parish Council meeting will be this Wednesday at 7:30.

NEW ANNOUNCEMENTS

MESSAGE FROM HIS EMINENCE METROPOLITAN JOSEPH -  As the World celebrates the New Year... we Orthodox Christians also celebrate the Baptism of Christ, the Appearance of God, the Great Blessing of the Water. Each new year is a reminder of the Promise and Hope that shines forth from our Lord and Savior.  Make it your resolution to draw nearer to God in 2019, and resolve to come together as one Orthodox Community in Grand Rapids, MI for AC2019, July 21-28, 2019. Hundreds of Antiochian Orthodox have already registered and purchased tickets. 60% of hotel rooms are already booked. See https://ac2019gr.org  

HELP WANTED - At the end of this Church School year our current Superintendent, Barbara Shoop, will be retiring.  Therefore, we are looking for someone willing to take over the position.  The Church School ministry is extremely important to our children in helping them understand the faith, learn church doctrine and how to use their faith in their everyday lives.  Barbara is willing to stay on as Assistant Superintendent for the first year to assist with the weekly responsibilities.  If you are interested in taking on this role, please see Fr. Antony or Barbara Shoop.
 
REMINDERS

BLESSING OF HOMES – Fr. Antony will be blessing homes after Epiphany (aka Theophany, January 6) and between Pascha and Pentecost.  We bless homes to reveal the home as what God created it to be, a way to heaven; to rid the home of every evil; to show that the family is a small church unit in Christ; to consecrate the home and all activity in it to God; and to fill the home and all who live in it with the fullness of God.  To schedule the blessing of your home, please use the form in the weekly Bulletin or call the church office at 617-547-1234.

WINTER FAMILY CAMP – Register now for Winter Family Camp at Antiochian Village to be held on Martin Luther King Jr. Weekend, January 18 – 21. Family Camp is an opportunity for your family to get away from everyday life and take a weekend as a family to grow closer to Christ.. Registration is now open at https://avcamp.org/other-programs/winter-family-camp/   Cost: $150/parent, $50/child, includes meals and lodging.

ANNUAL PARISH MEETING - The Annual Meeting of St. Mary’s parish will be held Sunday, January 27, immediately after Liturgy (snow date: Sunday, February 3). At this meeting the members of the parish will approve the Year 2019 budget. The proposed budget will be available on the previous Sunday, January 20. It is important that all members of St. Mary’s Church attend this meeting.

PLEDGE CARDS - were due on December 31. If you have not yet done so, please return your annual pledge card right away or fill out an ePledge on our website, http://stmaryorthodoxchurch.org/ministries/stewardship. A new pledge card is requested each year, even if your financial and volunteer contributions aren’t changing. 

PRESENTATION OF OUR LORD – On Friday, February 1, there will be an Evening Liturgy for the Feast of the Presentation of Our Lord in the Temple at 6:30pm

SCOUT SUNDAY - On Sunday, February 10, the scouts of our parish will be performing liturgical service. If your cub scout, boy scout, or girl scout would like to participate, please contact Charlie Marge:  charlie.marge@verizon.net.

WINTER CAMP - Grades 7-12 register now for Winter Camp at Antiochian Village, February 15-18.  Winter Camp will examine how faith, hope, love and wisdom play an important role in the Orthodox Christian faith. See https://avcamp.org/other-programs/winter-camp 
 
SUMMER CAMP – Registration for Summer Camp at the Antiochian Village is open NOW. See https://avcamp.org/summer-camp.  Be sure to register early, as sessions fill up quickly.  St. Mary’s children attend 3rd Session, July 14-26.

SCHOLARSHIPS - Students graduating in 2019 from high school who are children of membersof St. Mary’s may apply for the Diocese of Worcester and New England Scholarship.  Deadline is March 31, 2019. Contact Mary Winstanley O’Connor at 617-523-1010 or email at moconnor@koilaw.com for more information, including what it means to be a member.
   + Scholarships ($1,000) are available from the Syrian-Lebanese Women’s club of Greater Boston to young women of Syrian and Lebanese origin, residing in Massachusetts within 50-mile radius of Boston, who plan to pursue a four-year college education.  Scholarships are based on outstanding academic achievement, extra-curricular activities, charitable and civic involvement and good character; and applicants must be in good academic standing in her school and possess those personal attributes, which best serve the community.  Applications are available through the Church Office and must be postmarked by March 31, 2019.  If you have any questions, contact Mary Winstanley O’Connor at 617-523-1010 or email at moconnor@koilaw.com .

ST. MARY’S ANNIVERSARY – Save the date: On Saturday, May 18 we will celebrate our 90thAnniversary at the Crown Plaza in Woburn.  Plan to join us for dinner, dancing and other festivities.  More details to follow.

2019 COFFEE HOURS - The 2019 Sign-Up Sheet for has been posted! Please sign up to provide a coffee hour – it can be as simple as coffee, juice, and cookies.   Plenty of help is available! Signup sheets are on the bulletin board outside the Hall, or contact Linda Arnold (mmarmee52@aol.com) or the Church Office (617-547-1234 or Secretary@stmaryorthodoxchurch.org ).  Remember, no volunteer = no coffee hour!

JOIN US ONLINE - St. Mary’s Church services are broadcast live each week through an internet video stream. If you can't attend a service in person, or want to share this ministry with a friend or loved one, the live stream can be viewed at www.stmaryorthodoxchurch.org/live during regularly scheduled service times (see the schedule of services or online). If you have questions or comments about this ministry please contact us at live@stmaryorthodoxchurch.org

REFLECTION

What was Christ’s love like? Did it withhold anything? Did it take note of or measure its spiritual gifts? What did it regret, where was it ever stingy? Christ’s humanity was spit upon, struck, crucified. Christ’s Divinity was fully incarnate to the end in his spit-upon, battered, degraded and crucified Humanity. The Cross — an instrument of shameful death — became a symbol of self-denying love for the world.
   - Mother Maria Skobtsova (St. Maria of Paris) 

Christ, having completed for us his saving work and ascended to heaven with the body which he had taken to himself, accomplishes in his own self the union of heaven and earth, of material and spiritual beings, and thus demonstrates the unity of creation in the polarity of its parts.
   - Maximus the Confessor
 
He was wrapped in swaddling clothes, but when he rose from the tomb he laid aside the shroud… He had "no form or comeliness" (Isaiah 53:2), but on the mountain he shone with a splendor more dazzling than the sun, a foretaste of his future glory. … He knew weariness, but he is rest for "all who labor and are heavy laden" (Matthew 11:28). He prays, but he answers prayers. He weeps, but wipes away tears. He asks where Lazarus has been laid, for he is man; but he raises him to life, for he is God. He is sold, dirt cheap, for thirty pieces of silver, but he redeems the world, at great cost, with his own blood.  … He dies, but he brings to life, and by his own death destroys death. He is buried, but he rises again. He descends into hell, but rescues the souls imprisoned there.
   - Gregory Nazianzen