Altar Server: D. Abshear
Greeter(s): M. Jobst, M. Brausch
Epistle: A. McLarnan
Donut Sponsor(s): I. Snodgrass
Chapel Vacuum: T. Jacobs
Candle care: J. Elash
Counters: B. Garber, P. Friesel
9:00am Hours: M. Pearson
9:25am Reception of Ellysse Winget into the Catechumenate
9:30am Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom
11:30am Fellowship Hour: Team 2/Children’s Choir
11:45am Youth Group/Church School
Hymns & Readings:
Resurrectional Troparion, Tone 3
Let the heavens rejoice! Let the earth be glad! For the Lord has shown strength with His arm. He has trampled down death by death. He has become the first born of the dead. He has delivered us from the depths of hell, and has granted to the world great mercy.
Hymn of St. Paul, Tone 1
O blessed and Holy Paul the Apostle, Enlightener of the Nations; Your preaching of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, has brought salvation to the ends of the earth. Never cease to intercede for us your children, that within us the Love of God may abide, bringing great joy to our neighbors and for us the salvation of our souls!
Kontakion of the Last Judgement, Tone 1
When You, O God, shall come to earth with glory, all things shall tremble, and the river of fire shall flow before Your judgment seat; the books shall be opened, and the hidden things disclosed; then deliver me from the unquenchable fire, and make me worthy to stand at Your right hand, O Righteous Judge!
Prokeimenon, Tone 3
Great is our Lord, and abundant in power, His understanding is beyond measure.
Epistle: 1 Corinthians 8:8-9:2
But food does not commend us to God; for neither if we eat are we the better, nor if we do not eat are we the worse. But beware lest somehow this liberty of yours become a stumbling block to those who are weak. For if anyone sees you who have knowledge eating in an idol’s temple, will not the conscience of him who is weak be emboldened to eat those things offered to idols? And because of your knowledge shall the weak brother perish, for whom Christ died? But when you thus sin against the brethren, and wound their weak conscience, you sin against Christ. Therefore, if food makes my brother stumble, I will never again eat meat, lest I make my brother stumble. Am I not an apostle? Am I not free? Have I not seen Jesus Christ our Lord? Are you not my work in the Lord? If I am not an apostle to others, yet doubtless I am to you. For you are the seal of my apostleship in the Lord.
Gospel: Matthew 25:31-46
When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory. All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats. And He will set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the left. Then the King will say to those on His right hand, ‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’ Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink? When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You? Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’ Then He will also say to those on the left hand, ‘Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels: for I was hungry and you gave Me no food; I was thirsty and you gave Me no drink; I was a stranger and you did not take Me in, naked and you did not clothe Me, sick and in prison and you did not visit Me.’ Then they also will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to You?’ Then He will answer them, saying, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.’ And these will go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”
For Further Reading:
“What is humility?” had a simple but penetrating answer: “It is when your brother sins against you and you forgive him before he comes to ask forgiveness.” One story, which illustrates this, suggests that it was only through realizing this kind of humility in practice that one could become reconciled to another with whom one had a disagreement. A brother was angry with another brother for something he had done. As soon as the second one learned of this, he came to ask the brother to forgive him. But the first brother would not open the door to him. So the one who had come to ask for forgiveness went to ask an old man the reason for this and what he should do. The old man told him,
“See if there is not a motive in your heart such as blaming your brother or thinking that it is he who is responsible. You justify yourself and that is why he is not moved to open the door to you. In addition, I tell you this: even it is he who has sinned against you, settle it in your heart that it is you who have sinned against him and justify your brother. Then God will move him to reconcile himself with you.” Convinced, the brother did this; then he went to knock at the brother’s door and almost before he heard the sound the other was first to ask pardon from the inside. Then he opened the door and embraced him with all his heart. (Douglas Burton-Christie, The Word in the Desert, pp. 252-253)
Today is both Meatfare Sunday and the day on which we remember the Last Judgment. The readings we have just heard speak to both of these directly and in complementary ways.
With Meatfare Sunday our preparation for Great Lent begins to take on a concretely dietary aspect, as its name indicates. This is the last day before Great Lent for eating meat. Thus begins, as it were, a warm up for the hard exercises, the asceticism, ahead of us.
It is very easy to miss the point of such practices. The purpose of such efforts is not simply to do what is expected of us, but instead to allow ourselves to be weaned from our dependency on everything that might separate us from God—not because it is bad in itself, but because of how we relate to it or depend on it. I’m reminded of this every time I persuade myself that I can’t do anything in the morning until I’ve had a cup of coffee: there is nothing at all wrong with coffee; and it is not my body that craves it; it is rather my mental attitude towards coffee or caffeine that has made that cup into my “god.”
We hear Paul remind us that the food itself is not the issue: it makes no difference to God whether we eat meat or don’t. God is not concerned with our diet! We are free in all of this, and it is this freedom which makes what we do of any worth anyway. If we freely, willingly, eagerly even, undertake the disciplines which the Church sets before us, we might just come to be less dependent upon our creature comforts. Only then will we come to realize that we are in fact truly dependent only upon God, for in truth most of us, most of the time, do not realize this. Only then will we come to know God truly, and to know God acting in us. (Fr. John Behr, The Cross Stands While the World Turns, pp. 21-22)
Being a Disciple
The Lord said: “Go and teach all nations.” The Church is concerned with individual souls but she also is concerned with whole nations and peoples. In the formation of cultures and civilizations, the Church has a prophetic word of witness she wants heard. She presents the transcendent in its own eucharistic reality and her paschal message of the Resurrection makes her more than relevant, for she is beyond every age. The Church proclaims that Christ has come to raise the dead who are sleeping and to awaken the living.
Every people appropriates to itself a historic mission, and in constructing itself sooner or later encounters the plan of God. The parable of the talents speaks of this normative plan proposed by God for the freedom of mankind. The ethics of the Gospel are characterized by freedom of mankind. The ethics of the Gospel are characterized by freedom and creativity. It demands all the maturity of an adult and requires infinitely more of ascetic discipline, of freely accepted constraint and of risk than any ethics of the Law. (Paul Evdokimov, In the World, of the Church: A Paul Evdokimov Reader, p. 206)
The Last Judgement
Think of it: Jesus Christ, the Life of all, the Creator of the universe, the only One ever to have been born without sin, was all alone, left in a common grave, outside of Jerusalem. He was alone even among his closest friends, since they never really understood Him, and thus He asked them: Do you not perceive or understand? (Mk. 8.17) Have I been with you so long, and yet you do not know Me? (Jn. 14.9). At the time of HIs passion, His isolation became acute. In the garden of agony, when His sweat became like great drops of blood, His disciples drifted off into sleep (Lk. 22.44). One by one His friends deserted Him. He stood alone before the judgement seat of Pilate, alone on the cross, alone in the grave: everywhere alone. He went alone into Hell. Alone, always alone. Why? So that you might learn that you have to be alone with God in order to become His dwelling place.
Then the Lord will say, at the Last Judgement, to those on His left, whom He will send away into Gehenna, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels: “I was a stranger and you did not welcome me” (cf. Mt 25:33-41). Do you see? He’s a stranger, somebody who’s alone, who’s ignored: I was hungry and you gave me no food; I was alone in prison and you did not visit me (cf. Mt 25.42-43).
...For many of us, this can be a rude awakening: after beholding Christ in our dreams, we find it annoying to open our eyes on a world filled with other people. Immediately we say: “I wasn’t looking for you I want Christ,” forgetting that the stranger, the poor man, the prisoner, the sinner, and especially my enemy - especially the person who seeks to harm me - is Christ for me. (Archimandrite Aimilianos of Simonopetra, The Way of the Spirit, pp. 244-245, 254)
Recent Posts on Fr. Ted’s Blog:
Children's choir will continue TODAY at 11:30. We are leaning a hymn to sing on Forgiveness Sunday (next Sunday, Feb. 18) and the Sunday after (Feb. 25) as well.
Youth Group Food Drive
The Youth Group is doing a food drive through the end of the month of February. Any food items brought in will be donated to a local food bank. There is a box in the coat closet to put the food items into.
The time for repentance is at hand! Come early to Confession this year and then spend the remaining time of Great Lent in repentance. Fr. Ted is generally available for Confession before and/or after the scheduled Matins and Vespers services. This week he also will be available on Wednesday evening from 5-6pm and then at 6:30pm and on Thursday from 5:30- 6:20pm. Other times may be available by appointment.
Fellowship Hall Doors Kept Locked
A reminder to all that the fellowship hall doors (to the patio and from the kitchen) will be kept locked while we are in the Liturgy. The hex keys to unlock those doors will no longer be left in the fellowship hall. You can exit through those doors but not enter through them. The doors will be unlocked again during the fellowship hour.
Tuesday Morning Meet-Up
Heather Weis is organizing informal, bi-weekly meet-ups for moms & kids and anyone else who is interested in coming to fellowship. The next meeting will be February 13 at 9:30am. Bring breakfast food if you wish, or just yourself. See you then.
Wednesday Book Study
Throughout Great Lent we will be discussing on Wednesday mornings the Epistle and Gospel readings for the Saturdays and Sundays of Great Lent. Please join us to consider these essential Scripture lessons and to share what value these readings have had in your spiritual life. This Wednesday, February 14, we will discuss the readings for Meatfare Sunday and Cheesefare Sunday: 1 Corinthians 8:8-9:2, Matthew 25:31-46 and Romans 13:11-14:4, Matthew 6:14-21. If you want to add to your Lenten discipline this year, please join our discussion.
We will again do one Memorial Liturgy during Great Lent - this year on Saturday, March 3 at 9:30am. You can bring to the Liturgy a written list of the names of your deceased family and friends, and we will pray by name for them during the Liturgy.
Pysanky Egg Decorating Workshop
The Pysanky Easter Egg Workshop is scheduled for the second full weekend in March: Friday, March 9, 2018 (10 am to 4 pm and 5 pm to 9 pm) and Saturday, March 10, 2018 (10 am to 3 pm). Please check the bulletin board for reservation sign-up and additional information. Due to some problems that have occurred in the past, please do not announce the workshop on social media.
Meals for the Lessin Family
The Lessin family welcomed a new baby boy, Brooks Ambrose, on February 3. If you would like to sign up to take them a meal, please contact Erin Caldwell at firstname.lastname@example.org
St. Paul Prayer Team
If you would like to submit prayer requests for the prayer team, forms can be found on the greeter’s table. Please place requests in the box on the greeter table or by email to email@example.com. If you would like to be a part of praying with the team - and pray daily for others in the parish, or if you have further questions please contact Mark Pearson.
Our monthly charity is being split this month. Part will be given to a family of 4 children whose father and breadwinner suffered a crippling accident and is on a long road to recovery. The other will be given to help our sister parish of St. Stephen’s in Lima as they work toward getting a priest for the parish and prepare for the expenses of moving a priest to Lima.
Coyotes in our Backyard
A pack of coyotes has been spotted roaming our church property. There seems to be plenty of small game and feral cats around as prey. Coyotes in urban settings have now become common in every county in Ohio. Coyotes generally avoid humans, but can be aggressive if feeling trapped. As in everything around the church property we remind parents to be mindful of where your children are at all times. Parents are responsible for their children's safety and should know themselves the best way to react if encountering a coyote and should instruct their children on proper behavior as well.
Notes from the 3 February Parish Council Planning Meeting
Present: Fr. Ted, Brian Garber, Kerrie Wiese, Ann McLarnan, Rebecca Barone, Janine Elash, Bruce Garber, David Short, Heather Weis
YTD Financial Report as of 30 November 2017:
Expenses exceeded the Budget partially because expenses include $17,762 which was paid out for the new playground, but which wasn’t part of the 2017 Budget. The playground was paid almost entirely by additional donations from the membership. That being said, the general operating expenses for the parish have continued to be slightly above the income. Only after we get the financial report for December will we know exactly how we fared in 2017 as December tends to be a better month for income. As of February 1, we have received 74 pledges for the 2018 Pledge Drive, which represents 107 members. The pledge total is $200,770 which represents about 75% of the 2018 adopted budget.
1) Council established a Committee to review the long term grounds/building maintenance and capital expense plan. 2) Heather Weis discussed the plans to have a vacation bible program for our children this summer. 3) We are forming a Young Adult Ministry team to provide programs for young adults in the parish. 4) Council agreed to take a serious look at how to better utilize the fellowship hall space and to consider what work we might do to increase the space. 5) Council began considering the Risk Committee’s recommendations for improving safety and security in our building. Council agreed that the fellowship hall doors will remain locked during the divine liturgy and will be opened only when we are in the fellowship hour. Council commended the Risk Committee for all the work they are doing. Council is review an Emergency Action Plan to help prepare for a response to emergencies that might arise.
Birthdays: John Turri, Adam Barone
God grant you many years!
This Week’s Schedule:
Monday, February 12
St. Meletius, Archbishop of Antioch (381)
Readings: 3 John 1:1-15, Luke 19:29-40, 22:7-39
8:30am Matins 9:00am Confession 9:30am Office Hours
Tuesday, February 13
Ven. Martinian of Cæsarea in Palestine (5th c.)
Readings: Jude 1:1-10, Luke 22:39-42, 45-23:1
Wednesday, February 14
Ven. Auxentius of Bithynia (ca. 470)
Readings: Joel 2:12-26, Joel 3:12-21
8:30am Matins 9:00am Confession 9:30am Office Hours
11am Adult Discussion: The New Testament Readings of Great Lent
5pm Confession 6pm Vespers 6:30pm Confession
Thursday, February 15
Apostle of the Seventy Onesimus (ca. 109)
Readings: Jude 1:11-25, Luke 23:2-34, 44-56
5:30pm Confession 6:30pm Catechism/Inquirer’s Class: Session 4
Friday, February 16
St. Nicholas, Equal-to-the-Apostles, Archbishop of Japan (1912).
Readings: Zechariah 8:7-17, Zechariah 8:19-23
8:30am Matins 9:00am Confession 9:30am Office Hours
Saturday, February 17
Greatmartyr Theodore the Tyro (“the Recruit”—ca. 306)
Readings: Romans 14:19-23, 16:25-27, Matthew 6:1-13
4pm Confession 5pm Vespers 5:45pm Confession
Sunday, February 18
SUNDAY OF CHEESEFARE — Tone 4. The Expulsion of Adam and Eve from Paradise. St. Leo the Great, Pope of Rome (461)
Readings: Romans 13:11-14:4, Matthew 6:14-21
Prosfora: Need volunteer
Altar Server: V. Weis
Greeter(s): D. Helferich, G. Friesel
Epistle: L. Short
Chapel Vacuum: S. Osman
Candle care: Need volunteer
Counters: J. Wiese, L. Wagner
9:00am Hours: L. Short
9:30am Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom
11:30am Fellowship Hour: Team 3
11:45am Youth Group/Church School
5pm Forgiveness Vespers
Upcoming Dates to Remember
February 19 Lent Begins/Canon of St. Andrew, 6pm
February 21 Canon of St. Andrew, 6pm
February 23 Presanctified Liturgy, 6pm
February 28 Presanctified Liturgy, 6pm
March 3 Memorial Liturgy, 9:30am
March 9-10 Pysanky Workshop