St. George
Serbian Orthodox Church
Carmichaels, PA

Bulletin 196 - September 29/October 6, 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

September 29 / October 6, 2002
Fifteenth Sunday after Pentecost
No. 196

Titus 2:1-3
But as for you, speak the things which are proper for sound doctrine: that older men be sober, reverent, temperate, sound in faith, in love, in patience; the older women likewise, they be reverent in behavior, not slanderers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things...

Services This Past Week
September 29-Thirty three people attended Divine Liturgy.
September 30-Three people attended Matins. Three people came for Ninth Hour and Vespers.
October 1-Four people came for Matins. Two people came for Ninth Hour and Vespers.
October 2-Three people came for Matins. Two peopel came for Ninth Hour and Vespers.
October 3-Three people came for Matins. One person came for Ninth Hour and Vespers.
October 4-Three people came for Matins. Two people came for Ninth Hour and Vespers.

Services This Coming Week-Call to Verify Weekday Schedule
Divine Liturgy today.
Matins-Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday-8:30 AM.
Ninth Hour and Vespers-Monday, Tuesday (Will include and Akathist to St. John the Theologian), Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday-4:30 PM.
Saturday-Divine Liturgy-Holy Trinity Mission-Fairmont-10:00AM.

Remember Monastery Marcha with Prayers and Contributions

Important Dates
October 9-St. John the Apostle and Evangelist
October 14-Protection of Mother of God.
October 19-St. Thomas, the Apostle
October 27-St. Petka-Paraskeva-Parish Anniversary Dinner
October 31-St. Luke
November 2-Memorial Saturday
November 5-St. James the Apostle
November 8-St. Demetrius.
November 14-Sts. Cosmas and Damian, Unmercenary Healers
November 16-Renovation of St.George the Great Martyr Church
November 21-Synaxis of St. Archangel Michael and All Bodiless Powers
November 24-St. Stephen of Decani
November 26-St. John Chrysostom

If you are too busy to are too busy!

Parish Life
1.Thank you to the Kolo for the new carpet in the church.
2.Thank you to the Kolo members coming to bake this past week.
3.Four people watched the video "The Church and Salvation" shown to the Adult Class. Class again this Thursday following Matins.
4.Remember to return your menu choice for the forthcoming banquet.

A Thought From Father Rade Merick*
Claiming the title of Christian means following the Light wherever it leads us. It means opening the eyes of our souls and hearts and keeping our face towards the Sun. And that means doing what is right in God's eyes and being obedient to Him, instead of following our own whims. That is where we so often fail, because we often prefer our own ways to God's ways. *(Path of Orthodoxy, January 2002).

To Consider
1.The impact of mental illness in a loved one.
2.Services provided by mental health professionals.
3.In-patient and outpatient care.
4.Psychotropic medication.
5.Turning to the Church for help when a loved one is ill.
6.Prayers for loved ones.
7.Finding peace in the teachings of Christ.
8.Experiencing help and support from the Church.
9.Loving the person who is ill.
10.Accepting the care that is necessary.
11.Maintaining hope.
12.Dealing with the complexities of mental illness.

Remember St. Sava School of Theology in Libertyville

Activities of Parish Priest
1.Visited parishioner-SCI-Greene-October 4.
2.Visited patient-Brownsville Hospital-October 4.

From the Desert fathers

A brother asked Abba Tithoes, "Which way leads to humility?" The old man said, 'The way of humility is this: self-control, prayer, and thinking of yourself inferior to all creatures.'

Fifteenth Sunday After Pentecost
Conception of St. John the Baptist

Matthew 22:35-46 Luke 1:5-15

Then one of them, a lawyer, asked Him a question, testing Him, and saying, "Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?" Jesus said to him, "You shall love the Lord Your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it; 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.' On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets ."While the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them, saying, What do you think about the Christ? Whose Son is He? They said to Him, "The Son of David." He said to them, "How does David in the Spirit call Him 'Lord,' saying: 'The Lord said to my Lord, "Sit at My right hand, till I make Your enemies Your footstool." "If David then calls Him 'Lord' how is He his Son?" And no one was able to answer Him a word, nor from that day on did anyone dare question Him anymore.

There was in the days of Herod, the king of Judea, a certain priest named Zacharias, of the division of Abijah. His wife was of the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. And they were both righteous before God, walking in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless. But they had no child, because Elizabeth was barren, and they were both well advanced in years. So it was, that while he was serving as priest before God in the order of his division, according to the custom of the priesthood, his lot fell to burn incense when he went into the temple of the Lord. And the whole multitude of the people was praying outside of the hour of incense. Then an angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing on the right side of the altar of incense. And when Zacharias saw him, he was troubled, and fear fell upon him. But the angel said to him, "Do not be afraid, Zacharias, for you prayer is heard; and you wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you shall call his name John. And you will have joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth. For he will be great in the sight of the Lord, and shall drink neither wine nor strong drink. He will also be filled with the Holy Spirit, even from his mother's womb."

Today the Holy Orthodox Church puts before us two Gospel messages to consider. The first from the Gospel of St.Matthew gives us these two great commandments from the Lord Jesus Christ. The first is to love the Lord God with all your heart, soul and mind. The second is to love your neighbor as yourself.

Love of God and love of neighbor are two profound expressions of love. The Holy Evangelist and Theologian John put this love in perspective when he wrote: "for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen, how can he love God whom he has not seen" (Ijn.4:21)

The Gospel account of the ""Good Samaritan" is a perfect illustration of care for one's neighbor (Lk.10:25-37). The account of the Good Samaritan also was in response to an inquiry from a lawyer as is the present Gospel message (Lk.10:25).

Serious believers will devote considerable thought to the place of Jesus Christ in their lives. Serious believers will reflect on the passage of centuries and the place of God in history.

The world is larger than a single human can comprehend. Centuries have passed far more than a single mind can comprehend. The work of God through the centuries is more than a single mind can comprehend.

The Holy Orthodox Church helps us to put life in perspective and to make it more manageable. The Holy Orthodox Church helps us to understand life as created and intended by God. The Holy Sacraments enable us to experience Christ,

to be united with Christ. The Holy Gospel messages enable us to learn directly from Christ. Today's learning involves the announcement of the birth of St. John the Baptist. We know that in July we celebrate the birth of St. John the Baptist, in January we celebrate St. John's participation in the Baptism of Christ and in September we remember his beheading.

Our Lord Jesus Christ said "among those born of women there is not a greater prophet than John the Baptist." (Lk.7:28) We cannot go through life as Orthodox Christians without considering the place of John the Baptist in salvation history.

John was chosen from all men of all centuries to baptize Jesus in the Jordan. (Mk.l:9). It was John who was privileged to have his testimony recorded forever. John said of Jesus: "I have seen and testified that this is the Son of God." (Jn.l:34)

We live centuries after John the Baptist. We live centuries after the dialogue between the lawyer and Jesus. Evidence has accumulated of Christ through the centuries.

Believers experience Christ today as believers centuries ago experienced Christ. "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever." (Heb.13:8) Christian life is centered in Christ. Christian life is founded in Christ. Christian life is directed in Christ.

Jesus spoke of the whole person…heart, mind and soul being committed to the love of God. Jesus spoke of love for neighbor as love for self. The completeness of commitment is evidenced in the life of St. John the Baptist. He gave his life for truth (Mt.14:1-12).

Let us measure our lives by the teachings of Christ. Let us measure our Christian commitment by the saints of the Church. Let us focus on repentance and our sinfulness and the need to grow in Christ.

We experience the joy of Christ when we strive always to live according to His teachings, to His way. We experience the joy of Christ when we say "no" to temptation, to the ways of the devil and say "yes" to God and the invitation to follow God.

The life of St. John the Baptist was a life of total dedication to God. The teachings of Christ in the present Gospel calls for total love of God and love of neighbor. May each day be a step toward fulfilling the teachings of Christ, a step toward a complete life in Christ.

St. George Serbian Orthodox Church, Carmichaels, Pennsylvania. September 29/October 6, 2002. Conception of St.John the Baptist.

Fr. Rodney Torbic

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