St. Paul the Apostle Orthodox Church
Sunday, June 2, 2019
Sixth Sunday of Pascha. Sunday of the Blind Man
St. Nicephorus the Confessor, Patriarch of Constantinople (828)
Prosfora: Olesya Sainz
Altar Servers: D. Abshear, J. Cunningham
Greeter(s): MK Smith, M. Adrian
Epistle: R. Barone
Donut Sponsor(s): Topalov
Chapel Vacuum: S. Osman
Candle care: Garber
Counters: B. Lootens, M. Pearson
9:00am Hours: B. Edwards
9:30am Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom
11:30am Fellowship Hour: Potluck
Hymns & Readings:
Paschal Hymn: Christ is risen from the dead, trampling down death by death, and upon those in the tombs bestowing life.
Tone 5 Troparion (Resurrection)
Let us, the faithful, praise and worship the Word, co-eternal with the Father and the Spirit, born for our salvation from the Virgin; for He willed to be lifted up on the Cross in the flesh, to endure death, and to raise the dead by His glorious Resurrection.
Tone 4 Kontakion (from the Pentecostarion)
I come to You, O Christ, blind from birth in my spiritual eyes, and call to You in repentance: “You are the most radiant Light of those in darkness.”
Tone 8 Kontakion (Pascha)
You descended into the tomb, O Immortal, You destroyed the power of death. In victory You arose, O Christ God, proclaiming: “Rejoice!” to the Myrrhbearing Women, granting peace to Your Apostles, and bestowing Resurrection on the fallen.
Tone 8 Prokeimenon (Resurrection)
Pray and make your vows before the Lord, our God!
Epistle: Acts 16:16-34
Now it happened, as we went to prayer, that a certain slave girl possessed with a spirit of divination met us, who brought her masters much profit by fortune-telling. This girl followed Paul and us, and cried out, saying, “These men are the servants of the Most High God, who proclaim to us the way of salvation.” And this she did for many days. But Paul, greatly annoyed, turned and said to the spirit, “I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her.” And he came out that very hour. But when her masters saw that their hope of profit was gone, they seized Paul and Silas and dragged them into the marketplace to the authorities. And they brought them to the magistrates, and said, “These men, being Jews, exceedingly trouble our city; and they teach customs which are not lawful for us, being Romans, to receive or observe.” Then the multitude rose up together against them; and the magistrates tore off their clothes and commanded them to be beaten with rods. And when they had laid many stripes on them, they threw them into prison, commanding the jailer to keep them securely. Having received such a charge, he put them into the inner prison and fastened their feet in the stocks. But at midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them. Suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken; and immediately all the doors were opened and everyone’s chains were loosed. And the keeper of the prison, awaking from sleep and seeing the prison doors open, supposing the prisoners had fled, drew his sword and was about to kill himself. But Paul called with a loud voice, saying, “Do yourself no harm, for we are all here.” Then he called for a light, ran in, and fell down trembling before Paul and Silas. And he brought them out and said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” So they said, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household.” Then they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all who were in his house. And he took them the same hour of the night and washed their stripes. And immediately he and all his family were baptized. Now when he had brought them into his house, he set food before them; and he rejoiced, having believed in God with all his household.
Gospel: John 9:1-38
Now as Jesus passed by, He saw a man who was blind from birth. And His disciples asked Him, saying, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” Jesus answered, “Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but that the works of God should be revealed in him. I must work the works of Him who sent Me while it is day; the night is coming when no one can work. As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.” When He had said these things, He spat on the ground and made clay with the saliva; and He anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay. And He said to him, “Go, wash in the pool of Siloam” (which is translated, Sent). So he went and washed, and came back seeing. Therefore the neighbors and those who previously had seen that he was blind said, “Is not this he who sat and begged?” Some said, “This is he.” Others said, “He is like him.” He said, “I am he.” Therefore they said to him, “How were your eyes opened?” He answered and said, “A Man called Jesus made clay and anointed my eyes and said to me, ‘Go to the pool of Siloam and wash.’ So I went and washed, and I received sight.” Then they said to him, “Where is He?” He said, “I do not know.” They brought him who formerly was blind to the Pharisees. Now it was a Sabbath when Jesus made the clay and opened his eyes. Then the Pharisees also asked him again how he had received his sight. He said to them, “He put clay on my eyes, and I washed, and I see.” Therefore some of the Pharisees said, “This Man is not from God, because He does not keep the Sabbath.” Others said, “How can a man who is a sinner do such signs?” And there was a division among them. They said to the blind man again, “What do you say about Him because He opened your eyes?” He said, “He is a prophet.” But the Jews did not believe concerning him, that he had been blind and received his sight, until they called the parents of him who had received his sight. And they asked them, saying, “Is this your son, who you say was born blind? How then does he now see?” His parents answered them and said, “We know that this is our son, and that he was born blind; but by what means he now sees we do not know, or who opened his eyes we do not know. He is of age; ask him. He will speak for himself.” His parents said these things because they feared the Jews, for the Jews had agreed already that if anyone confessed that He was Christ, he would be put out of the synagogue. Therefore his parents said, “He is of age; ask him.” So they again called the man who was blind, and said to him, “Give God the glory! We know that this Man is a sinner.” He answered and said, “Whether He is a sinner or not I do not know. One thing I know: that though I was blind, now I see.” Then they said to him again, “What did He do to you? How did He open your eyes?” He answered them, “I told you already, and you did not listen. Why do you want to hear it again? Do you also want to become His disciples?” Then they reviled him and said, “You are His disciple, but we are Moses’ disciples. We know that God spoke to Moses; as for this fellow, we do not know where He is from.” The man answered and said to them, “Why, this is a marvelous thing, that you do not know where He is from; yet He has opened my eyes! Now we know that God does not hear sinners; but if anyone is a worshiper of God and does His will, He hears him. Since the world began it has been unheard of that anyone opened the eyes of one who was born blind. If this Man were not from God, He could do nothing.” They answered and said to him, “You were completely born in sins, and are you teaching us?” And they cast him out. Jesus heard that they had cast him out; and when He had found him, He said to him, “Do you believe in the Son of God?” He answered and said, “Who is He, Lord, that I may believe in Him?” And Jesus said to him, “You have both seen Him and it is He who is talking with you.” Then he said, “Lord, I believe!” And he worshiped Him.
(Instead of “It is truly meet …,” we sing:)
The Angel cried to the Lady, full of grace: “Rejoice, O pure Virgin! Again, I say: ‘Rejoice, your Son is risen from His three days in the tomb! With Himself He has raised all the dead.’” Rejoice, O ye people!
Shine, shine, O new Jerusalem! The glory of the Lord has shone on you! Exult now, and be glad, O Zion! Be radiant, O pure Theotokos, in the Resurrection of your Son!
Receive the Body of Christ; taste the Fountain of immortality! Praise the Lord from the heavens! Praise Him in the highest! Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia.
For Further Reading:
Jesus, Lord of Our Life
He did not come here to undo our choices, but to move through them victoriously, and to show us how we might likewise move. He did not come to eclipse us, or to overrule our persons. On the contrary, He came to endow our persons with the self-same unending life. (Scott Cairns, The End of Suffering, p. 109)
Heaven: Our Home
Imagine a world, Christ-bearers, where instead of the sun the Most High God himself shines, warms, gives life, and constantly rejuvenates! This is your world, toward which you are journeying. This is your homeland, where you will also be imperishable. This is the fatherland of the sons of the heavenly Father, of all those who have been adopted as sons of God through the Lord Jesus. And you shall be numbered among them, if you are victorious. (Bishop Nikolai Velimirovich, The Faith of the Chosen People, p. 96)
The Ascension: No Barrier to Heaven Ever Again
“To see heaven open”: For Fr. Boris, these four words signify the very mystery of Christ, of the Christian faith and hope. “For we have the certainty that heaven, which opened three times in the unfolding of the mystery of salvation, remains henceforth open forever. Nothing and no one can reconstruct the barrier that the sin of the first man erected between God and man. No one can excavate again the abyss which Jesus has filled between heaven and earth.” (Fr. Boris Bobrinskoy, The Compassion of the Father, p. 32)
The Place Where No Human Had Trod
And finally, those who received His teaching were confirmed in the hope that He gave them, thanks to His sealing His words to them with His very own blood. Through His death and resurrection He confirmed the twelve men who had been chosen, through the foreknowledge of God, out of the entire race of Adam for this ministry. Then, amid ineffable splendour (the Father) raised Him to Himself to heaven, to that place which no created being had trod, but whither He had, through His own (action), invited all rational beings, angels, and human beings, to that blessed Entry, in order to delight in the divine light in which was clothed that Man who is filled with all that is holy, who is now with God in ineffable honor and splendor. (Isaac of Nineveh, Isaac of Nineveh, p. 61)
Healing the Blind Man: Materialistic Spirituality
The healing of the man born blind highlights an essential and very practical implication of the incarnation. God is pure spirit. But when God the Word united himself with his material creation, the spiritual acquired materiality, and conversely, the material was infused with the spiritual. (Daniel B. Hinshaw, Touch and the Healing of the World, p. 41)
What the Blind Man Sees
...when we imagine what it could have been when Christ healed the man born blind. He was born a blind child. He had lived all his life without ever seeing anything around him And the first thing that he saw was the face of God incarnate and the eyes of the divine Mercy and Love looking into his eyes. What an experience! (Metropolitan Anthony Bloom, Churchiantiy vs. Christianity, p. 30)
Recent Posts on Fr Ted’s Blog
Bell-Ringing During the Pascha Season
As we did last year, any children who wish, may help ring a bell during the “Christ is Risen” at the beginning and end of liturgy until Ascension. Please have your child quietly meet in the area by the choir to get a bell to ring.
We continue to remember in our prayers all those affected by the tornadoes last week. Please do let Fr. Ted know of any specific needs that he or the parish might help with.
Wednesday Adult Discussion Group
We are continuing our discussion of Metropolitan Kallistos Ware’s book How Are We Saved? Please join us for the discussion when we meet again. You are welcome to attend even if you don’t have a copy of the book. When we finish discussing How are We Saved? in a couple of weeks, we will begin a new book, How To Be a Sinner by Peter Bouteneff. If you want to join our Wednesday morning discussion this summer, order a copy of the book now and begin reading.
Part of our celebration of the resurrection of Christ (Pascha) and the coming of the Holy Spirit (Pentecost) is the celebration of the Ascension of our Lord. Christ not only raises the dead and sends the Holy Spirit on us in this world, He unites earth to heaven, creation to the Creator, humanity to divinity. This is our salvation and we celebrate it in the Feast of the Ascension. We will keep the Feast with Vespers-Liturgy beginning at 6pm this Wednesday, June 5, followed by a Festal Potluck supper. We will continue our liturgical celebration with festal matins on Thursday, June 6, at 8:30am.
St. Paul Park Days
We will continue our park meet-up days on Thursday, June 6 at Indian Riffle Park. Arrive as early as 9:30 and feel free to bring a packed lunch. In case of rain, cancellations will be posted in the St. Paul Facebook page by 8:15am. The complete schedule can be found on the bulletin boards.
Second Saturdays Social Event
The next Second Saturdays Social event will be June 8 beginning at 3pm and ending with Vespers. Bring the kids for an Orthodox storytime based on one of the saints for the month. We’ll have craft time as well. See Heather Weis with questions.
Memorial Saturday Liturgy
On Saturday, June 15 (the day before Pentecost) we will do a Memorial Liturgy at 9:30am. On that morning, you can give Fr. Ted a written list of the first names of the deceased loved ones you want him to pray for by name at the Liturgy.
Prayer for Graduates
We will say a prayer for the blessing of our parish high school and college graduates on Pentecost Sunday, June 16 following the Divine Liturgy. Please submit names of graduates to Erin at email@example.com.
Estate Planning Seminar
How will your kids be taken care of if something happens to you? Do you want to relieve your family of making medical and financial decisions if you are incapacitated? How should your assets be distributed so there are no disputes among surviving family members? To help you prepare for the unexpected, provide for your peace of mind and a plan for your family’s future, St. Paul parish is offering a free seminar conducted by Gudorf Law firm. Topics include the necessity for and preparation of Wills, Power of Attorney, Medical Directives and more. There is no obligation to do business with Gudorf Law. The necessary documents and directives can be prepared by any lawyer or even do it yourself on line. The seminar will be held at St. Paul’s on Saturday June 22 at 10 AM and last approximately one hour. We do need volunteers to provide child care so both spouses can attend the seminar. Please contact Bruce Garber when you decide to help our fellow parish members.
Volunteering is good for your health!
Most of you are aware that the food for the Fellowship Hour doesn’t magically appear on the serving line in the Fellowship Hall every Sunday after Liturgy. A troop of volunteers provides the goodies each week, but we have lost a number of them and need more help. If you are willing and able, please contact Andrew or Jenny Watson or Dave Fenner to be assigned to a team. Even if you are unable to cook one weekend per month, we still need help cleaning up.
Parish Feast Day Celebration
We will begin our celebration of the feast day of Sts. Peter & Paul on Friday, June 28 with Vespers at 6pm. We will have divine liturgy at 9:30am on June 29 followed by a festal meal catered by Christopher's with outdoor activities (bounce house!) for the kids. Please bring a side dish or dessert. Guests from Annunciation and Assumption Churches will also be invited.
Vacation Church School
Vacation Church school will be at Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church this year June 24-28. Registration forms can be found on the bulletin board in the foyer. See Heather Weis with questions.
Our June charity will be given to relieve tornado victims.
Summer Book Discussion?
Interested in joining a book discussion this summer? Fr. Ted is recommending that we read and discuss together the book CONTEMPLATING CHRIST: THE GOSPELS AND THE INTERIOR LIFE by Vincent Pizzuto. The book is available as a paperback (about $20) and on Kindle ($12). The book explores issues of discipleship, asceticism and the spiritual life. If you would like to discuss this book with your fellow parishioners, please let Fr. Ted know. If we get enough people interested, we can have more than one discussion group on the book. We can have a discussion on summer Sundays after fellowship hour and can do a discussion on a summer evening. Let Fr. Ted know when you would want to meet to discuss this book. It is an excellent book - even though its author is not Orthodox - offering insight into the interior life and also challenging us to grow in our practice of our Faith. The book takes a very practical look at the theological claim that God became human so that humans might become God - incarnation and deification are two pillars of our salvation.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org. 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.
This Week’s Schedule:
Monday, June 3
8:30am Matins 9am Office Hours
Tuesday, June 4
Wednesday, June 5
8:30am Matins 9am Office Hours
11am Discussion Group 6:00pm Vespers-Liturgy for Ascension with festal potluck following
Thursday, June 6
8:30am Festal Matins for Ascension 9am Office Hours
9:30am St. Paul Park Days: Indian Riffle Park
Friday, June 7
NO Matins or Office Hours
Saturday, June 8
3pm Second Saturday Social Event: Orthodox Story Time!
Sunday, June 9
Prosfora: S. Pacak
Altar Servers: V. Weis, D. Holobeny
Greeter(s): D. Short & M. Brausch
Epistle: S. Pacak
Donut Sponsor(s): Lamb
Chapel Vacuum: T. Jacobs
Candle care: J. Elash
Counters: B. Garber
9:00am Hours: S. Pacak
9:30am Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom
11:30am Fellowship Hour: Team 2
Upcoming Dates to Remember:
June 15 Memorial Liturgy 9:30am
June 16 Pentecost
June 24 Beginning of the Apostles’ Fast
June 24-28 Vacation Church School at Annunciation
June 28 Vespers for Sts. Peter & Paul
June 29 Liturgy for Sts. Peter & Paul with celebration afterwards.