St. Mary Orthodox Church

Cambridge, MA

Update for the week Thursday, June 27 - Wednesday, July 3, 2019


SUNDAY 6/23– Orthros 8:45am, Divine Liturgy 10:00am


CONGRATULATIONS TO PLC CONTESTANTS – Our Teen, Pre-teen and Adult Bible Bowlteams won FIRST PLACE at the Parish Life Conference last weekend, competing against our sister churches in the Diocese of Worcester and New England. The Teen Team participants were, Benjamin Crea, Nicholas Mazzoni and Nicholas Bezzerides; the Pre-teen team participants were Joseph Soloman, Saron Soloman, Elnathan Daniel and Ruth Samson. The Adult participants were Furtuna Risom and Charlie Marge.  Additionally, Nicholas Mazzoni won the Junior Division in the Oratorical Festival.  Many thanks to coach Violet Robbat, who spends many, many hours preparing and coaching the teens for the competition. Congratulations to them all!

DORMITION FAST and FEAST – The fast preceding the Feast of the Dormition of the Blessed Theotokos, our patronal feast day, begins on Thursday, August 1 and continues through Wednesday, August 14. On the eve of the Feast, Wednesday August 14, we will have Vespers at 4:15pm, Orthros with Lamentations at 5:30pm, and Festal Divine Liturgy at 7:00pm, followed by a Dormition feast in the church hall, hosted by Mary Winstanley O’Connor

GREETERS NEEDED – We are looking for additional greeters to join our team.  You can volunteer for one Sunday or several; many Sundays are available. This is a great opportunity to meet all the parishioners of St. Mary’s!  As a greeter, you will welcome people into the church and help to direct visitors upstairs to the Liturgy, in addition to keeping an eye on the vestibule, hallways and entranceways during Liturgy.  Arrive at church 15 minutes before Liturgy (9:45am); greeting time ends when Communion starts. If you are interested, contact Buddy Mabardy at or 781-729-6303, or Barbara Shoop in the church office, or 617-547-1234.

CHURCH SCHOOL – Please contact Deno Takles, our new Church School Superintendent (at if you would like to help with the Church School. We are looking for a Teacher and Assistant for Grades 2/3 and a Teacher for Grades 4/5 starting in the fall.

COFFEE HOUR VOLUNTEERS NEEDED – Volunteering always falls off this time of year, but the need for fellowship and hospitality stays strong. Please sign up to sponsor a coffee hour, individually or with friends.  It can be as simple as coffee, juice, and cookies, and plenty of help is available.  Signup sheets are on the bulletin board downstairs outside the Hall, or tell Barbara in the office at 617-547-1234 or secretary@stmaryorthodoxchurch.orgWhen no one volunteers, there is no coffee hour. Isn't it your turn by now? 

CROSSROAD - CrossRoad Summer Institute, a 10-day academic summer institute for Orthodox high school juniors and seniors to help them grow closer to Christ, will be held Tuesday-Friday, July 2-12, at Hellenic College Holy Cross.  Apply today at

SACRED MUSIC INSTITUTE – This year’s Sacred Music Institute will be held Wednesday-Sunday, July 10-14, at Antiochian Village. The theme this year is “Sacraments and Song.” Contact Charlie Marge with any questions:  Online registration is available through the Village website.

PARISH COUNCIL – The next meeting of the Parish Council will be on Wednesday, July 17 at 7:30.

ANTIOCHIAN ARCHDIOCESE CONVENTION – This year’s Convention will be in Grand Rapids, MI, July 21-28, 2019. See 
TANGLEWOOD OUTING – Join your music-loving friends from St. Mary’s and carpool out to Tanglewood after Liturgy on Sunday, August 4. We’ll picnic on the lawn and listen to music by Rachmaninoff and Sibelius, featuring pianist Yefim Bronfman with the Boston Symphony Orchestra. For more information see The concert starts at 2:30; lawn tickets are $22.00 - pay at the door; children are free. Bring lawn chairs if you want them, and picnic food for yourself and to share.  For more information and to let us know you're coming, contact Melissa Nassiff at

TRANSFIGURATION – Divine Liturgy for the Feast of the Transfiguration will be celebrated on Monday, August 5, at 6:30.

NEW SKETE PILGRIMAGE – The annual New Skete Pilgrimage is set for Saturday, August 10 this year (the Saturday after Transfiguration).  In years past, a number of St. Mary people have gone out for the weekend (this year, 8/9-11, 2019) to help the Communities with this event—to be extra sets of “helping hands” for the day.  They are hoping a number of us will do so again this year. In the past, this has been a wonderful community building activity for all of us.  Moreover, if you have never been to the monastery, this may be a good way to be introduced to their life and work.  In addition to the services, there are tours of the church and talks by various members of the communities about their lives.  The main talk will be given by Gayle Woloshak, Ph. D. who is a Professor of Radiation Oncology, Radiology, and Cell and Molecular Biology at the Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University.  (In addition, she is Past President of the Orthodox Theological Society of America and Treasurer of the International Orthodox Theological Association and wears MANY other “hats” in the Orthodox world.  (Her ecclesial resume is quite long…)  Her talk is entitled, “Good Earth: Caring for God’s Creation."  There are also the dogs, great hiking trails, nearby tubing, and more (e.g. usually a picnic at Hedges Lake on that Sunday), etc.  More information about the Pilgrimage can be found here:
   Once again, Teva Regule ( will be coordinating the Boston helpers and as much housing as she can. (In particular, any women wanting to "camp out" at the nuns’, let her know.  The Emmaus house is now a guest house - anyone wishing to stay there should contact Br. Gregory directly at  Housing is first come, first served.

FAMILY CAMP – You’re invited to Diocese Family Camp Friday 10/4 through Sunday 10/6 at St. Methodios Faith & Heritage Center in Contoocook, NH,. Families from our Diocese come together for a weekend of camp activities, prayer, relaxation, fellowship, and learning.  More information and pictures can be found at Registration information will be posted soon.
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 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


The merciful person is he who gives to others what he has himself received from God, whether it be money, or food, or strength, a helpful word, a prayer, or anything else that he has through which he can express his compassion for those in need. At the same time he considers himself a debtor, since he has received more than he is asked to give.
   - St. Peter of Damascus, The Seven Commandments, Philokalia, Vol. 3
Let yourself be persecuted but do not persecute others. Be the friend of all. But in your spirit remain alone.
   - St. Isaac of Syria
Do not rail against anyone, but rather say, "God knows each one." Do not agree with him who slanders, do not rejoice at his slander and do not hate him who slanders his neighbor. This is what it means not to judge. Do not have hostile feelings towards anyone and do not let dislike dominate your heart; do not hate him who hates his neighbor. This is what peace is: Encourage yourself with this thought, "Affliction lasts but a short time, while peace is forever, by the grace of God the Word."
   - St. Moses the Ethiopian, Sayings of the Desert Fathers

When you see a poor person, remember the words of our Lord Jesus Christ by which he declared that it is He, Himself who is fed. For though that which appears is not Christ, yet in that person's form, it is Christ Himself who receives and begs.
   - St. John Chrysostom, Homilies on Matthew