St. George
Serbian Orthodox Church
Carmichaels, PA

Bulletin 190 - August 12/August 25, 2002

Chronicle of St.George Serbian Orthodox Church
Diocesan Bishop - His Grace Bishop Dr. MITROPHAN
Parish Priest - Fr. Rodney Torbic
296 Old Route 21
Carmichaels, Pennsylvania 15320

August 12, 2002/August 25, 2002
Ninth Sunday after Pentecost
No. 190

Philippians 1:27
Only let your conduct be worthy of the Gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of your affairs, That you stand fast in one spirit , with one mind striving for the faith of the gospel.

Services This Past Week
August 17 - Two people attended Vespers.
August 18 - Thirty-nine people came for Divine Liturgy. Two communicants.
August 18 - Pomen served in Fairmont, West Virginia for Rosa Danko.
August 19 - Eleven people came for Divine Liturgy. Two communicants. Three people came for Vespers.
August 20 - Two people came for Matins. Two people came for Vespers and Akathist for Dormition of Mother of God.
August 21 - Three people came for Matins. One person came for Vespers and Akathist for Dormition of Mother of God.
August 22 - Four people came for Matins. One person came for Vespers and Ninth Hour.
August 23 - Two people came for Matins. Three people came for Vespers and Akathist for Dormition of Mother of God.
August 24 - Matins and the First and Third Hours were read.

Services This Coming Week - Call To Verify Weekday Schedule
Today - Divine Liturgy
Matins - Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday 8:30 P.M.
Wednesday - Divine Liturgy 10:00 A.M.
Saturday - Divine Liturgy 10:00 A.M. - Holy Trinity Mission, Fairmont
Vespers - Thursday, Friday, Saturday 4:30 P.M., Thursday 7:00 P.M.

Remember Monastery Marcha with Prayers and Contributions

Important Dates
August 28 - Feast of Dormition, Kolo Slava Celebration
September 7 - First Slava Celebration at New Diocesan Center in Mars, Our Kolo will serve.
September 11 - Beheading of St. John The Baptist.
September 14 - Church New Year
September 15 - Kumovi Sunday
September 19 - Miracle of Archangel Michael

If you are too busy to are too busy!

Parish Life
1. Andrei and Kerri Popa moved from the area to California. They will return from time to time for Andrei to finish his Doctoral program at West Virginia University.
2. David Vrblan returned from his trip to Romania. Dr. Ivko Dimitri has returned from his trip.
3. Thank you to parishioners going to Fairmont and Monongah for viewing and the funeral this past week.
4. Adult classes will resume in September.
5. Sign up for trip to Diocese on September 7.

A Thought From Father Dosenovich*
It is said that God reveals Himself to man in the Bible and the life of the world. So it can be saidconcerning man in the Orthodox Church, that man reveals himself to God through the external symbols of faith and the customs of his Church and religion. One such custom for the Serbian people is the Slava. This is one of the distinct religious observances for the Serbian family and nation. The family celebrates the Slava, as do many cities, civil and military institutions. This is in fact an observance of the day when the first ancestors became baptised in the Orthodox faith. They took the Saint of the day as their family patron. Male members of the family will carry the same patron Saint as they establish their own families. The most common patron Saints among the Serbs are: St. John the Baptist, St. Nicholas, St. George and many others. Among the Orthodox Christions, Serbs are the only ones who have this religious observance. One, even being a good and pious Christian, and not obsrving Slava as a Serb, would be looked upon as an "orphan"* (1986 Calendar of Serbian Orthodox Clergy Brotherhood of the United States and Canada.)

Support St. Sava School of Theology with Prayers and Contributions

To Consider
1. The Dormition of the Mother of God.
2. The faithful work of the Circle of Serbian Sisters.
3. The purity of the Mother of God.

Activities of Parish Priest
1. August 17 - Traveled to St. George Church, Midland.
2. August 18 - Traveled to Fairmont, West Virginia for Pomen.
3. August 19, 2002 - Traveled to Fairmont and Monongah, West Virginia for funeral, burial and visit to Serbian cemetary.
4. August 20 - Went to Brownsville Hospital on behalf of parishioner with parishioner's spouse.
5. August 22 - Served at wedding, Holy Trinity Cathedral, Pittsburgh.
6. August 23 - Visited four residents at Rolling Meadows, Waynesburg. Visited with parishioner in community.
7. August 21 - Went to Diocesan Center, Mars.

From the Desert fathers

It was said of Abba Or and Abba Theodore, that they laid good foundations, and at all times gave thanks to God.

Ninth Sunday after Pentecost

Matthew 14:22-34

Immediately Jesus made His disciples get into the boat and go before Him to the other side, while He sent the multitudes away. And when He had sent the multitudes away, He went up on the mountain by Himself to pray. Now when evening came, He was alone there. But the boat was now in the middle of the sea, tossed by the waves, for the wind was contrary. Now in the fourth watch of the night Jesus went to them, walking on the sea. And when the disciples saw Him walking on sea, they were troubled saying, "It is a ghost!" And they cried out for fear. But immediately Jesus spoke to them saying, "Be of good cheer! it is I; do not be afraid." And Peter answered Him and said, "Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water." So He said, "Come." And when Peter had come down out of the boat, he walked on the water to go to Jesus. But when he was that the wind was boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink he cried out saying, "Lord, save me!" And immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and caught him, and said to him, "O you of little faith, why did you doubt?" And when the got into the boat, the wind ceased. Then those who were in the boat came and worshipped Him, saying, "Truly, You are the Son of God."

Our view and understanding of God requires improvement with time. Our relationship with God requires improvement with time. Serious Christians seek to consistancy with the teachings of life and of Jesus Christ.

Fighting sin is a daily battle. With God's help, we can be vigilant. The grace and mercy of God enable us to begin each new day. The Holy Gospel and Holy Body and Blood of Jesus Christ provide necessary strength.

The words of the Phrophet Isaiah remind us "They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint." (Is. 40:31) Christians draw hope and inspiration from the words of the Holy Prophets.

Prayer is a vital part of daily life for Orthodox believers. Prayer enables us to deal with our sins, to pray for our loved ones and to seek direction from God. Prayer gives us the opportunity to think about God and the place of God in our lives.

The present Gospel mentions that Jesus Christ went to the mountain to pray. If Jesus Christ included prayer in His life, dare we do anything less. Indeed, if Jesus Christ prayed in His perfection, our own imperfections are strong impetus to pray fervently.

Recognizing personal sinfulness requires careful examination of the teachings of the Church. Recognizing personal sinfulness requires honest examination of the self. We can begin anew when we realize our limits and the potential for a better life in Christ.

This is a time in the Church year when the Transfiguration of Jesus Christ is celebrated. This is a time of the year when the Dormition fast is in place. Orthodox Christians are called upon to contemplate the glory of the transfigured Christ. Orthodox Christians are called upon to think about Jesus Christ on the Mountain with Moses and Elijah, Peter, James and John.

The present Gospel speaks about Jesus being on the mountain. The mountains of God bear our careful consideration. Many turning points in the People of God occured are associated with the mountains.

Mt. Horeb, Mt. Sinai, Mt. Carmel and Mt. Tabor are mountains which come quickly to mind. The mountains of God beckon us to learn more about the heights of God.

The Dormition Fast focuses our attention on the Mother of God. The Dormition Fast is a time of preparation. It is a time of seeking to be cleansed form sin, to seek the Kingdom of God.

The Dormition Fast reminds us daily of the purity and the integrity of the mother of God. The Dormition fast provides structure and discipline for believers. The Dormition Fast is an external structure of the Church providing internal incentive to live the life in Christ.

The present Gospel emphasizes the importance of remaining strong in faith. Had Peter remained strong in his resolve, perhaps he would not have to begu to sink when he approached Jesus. Peter's doubts put him in peril.

Jesus saved Peter from the peril of the sea. Jesus Christ can save us from the perils of sin. When we encounter rough seas in our voyage of life, the Church is the life-boat to bring us safely to shore. Through the Church, Jesus Christ provides protection, direction and help to each believer.

The doubts experienced by Peter when difficult waves arose probably arise in each believer. The presence of Jesus Christ is certain. Jesus Christ can provide the calmness needed in all circumstances. Jesus Christ can rescue everyone willing to reach out to Him.

Jesus does more thna rescue Christians in sin. Jesus offers a way of life that provides for peace of mind, forgiveness, steadfastness, charitable works and love.

Jesus enables Christians to experience life as intended by the Creator and Redeemer. Jesus enables believers to experience joy and to maintain hope even in the most difficult of times.

St. Paul's Epistle to the Galatians states: "The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfullness, gentleness, self-control." (Gal. 5:22). Christians reading the Holy Scriptures will become familiar with the writings of St. Paul and learn more about life with God.

Normally, Orthodox Christians embrace Jesus Christ as King and God while still infants. As we move from infancy to adulthood, our commitment to Christ requires renewal. Our commitment to Christ requires investment and effort.

Daily we must work at being Orthodox Christians. The devil places obstacles and temptations before us. Christ helps us through, over and around the obstacles. St. Paul tells God is faithful and provides the way of escape when we encounter temptations (I Cor. 10:13).

Excercising the choice for Christ at each juncture in our lives will lead us towards the kingdom of God. Today's Gospel is a lesson in faithfulness.

May we remain faithful to Christ, that we may be guided to the heavenly shores of God's eternal Kingdom.

St. George Serbian Orthodox Church, Carmichaels, PA, August 12/25 2002.
Sts. Photinus, Anicletus and Others, Martyrs.

Fr. Rodney Torbic

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