St. George
Serbian Orthodox Church
Carmichaels, PA

Bulletin 257 - November 24/December 7, 2003




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

November 24/December 7, 2003
Twenty-Fifth Sunday after Pentecost
No. 257



Hebrews 11:1

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

Services This Past Week

November 30 - Thirty two people came for Divine Liturgy. One communicant.
December l - Three people came for Matins and First Hour. Three people came for the Akathist to Archangel Michael and Vespers.
December 2 - Two people came for Matins and First Hour. Two people came for Ninth Hour and Vespers.
December 3 - Three people came for Matins and First Hour. Two people came for Ninth Hour and Vespers.
December 4 - Nine people came for Divine Liturgy. Two communicants. Six different Akathists with themes related to the Mother of God were served during the course of the day. Eight people were present for five of them. Seven people were present for the last one.
December 5 - Three people came to St. George Church for Matins and First Hour. Seven people came to Holy Trinity Mission for Divine Liturgy (The sixtieth Divine Liturgy since the Mission officially became part of the Eastern American Diocese. Other Divine Liturgies were served prior. Other services held since).
December 6 - One person came for the Akathist for the Departed and Matins. Three people came for Ninth Hour and Vespers.

Services This Coming Week - Call to Confirm Weekday Schedule

Divine Liturgy today and each Sunday at 10:00 AM except on Pascha when it is held earlier.
Morning services - Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday at 6:30 AM.
Evening services - Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday at 3:00 PM Tuesday and Thursday at 7:00 PM.

Remember Monastery Marcha with Prayers and Contributions

Important Dates

December 13 - St. Andrew the First-Called Among the Apostles.
December-14 - Parish Annual Meeting
December 19 - St. Nicholas the Wonderworker, Archbishop of Myra in Lycia.
December 21 - Children's Day
December 27 - Sts. Thyrsus, Leucius, and Callinicus of Apollonia. Sts. Appolonius, Philemon, Arianus and Theoctychus of Alexandria.
December 28 - Mother's Day

If you are too busy to pray...you are too busy!

Parish Life

Thank you to Stan Brozik for arranging for the new cabinets in the church hall.
Thank you to Sister Angelina, Mildred Belch, Mildred Bezjak, Sonia Janson, Joe Katusa, Marion Luteran, Nadezda Rogish and George Ben Gapen for participating in the parish retreat. It was good to have Tom Hunter join the group for lunch.
Thank you to Mitzie Hunchuck for important parish nurse practioner services recently.
Adult Class this coming Thursday evening following service.
Honor the Nativity Fast until the Feast of the Nativity of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Pete Smargie was among the Honor Guard at the Robena Memorial Program.
Mary Trbovich and Mildred Seja Woatich are regular attenders at Holy Trinity Mission in Fairmont.
The Kolo will need helpers to bake.

A Thought From Very Reverend Stavrofor Dr. Nedeljko Grgurevich

By redemption we have become sons of God. But how do we relate to the One who granted us this treasure? Most often one forgets about this, showing ingratitude towards the heavenly Father, neglecting the obligations man has been charged with. Such people should not by their presence dishonor the great moment of the transubstantiation of the Holy Gifts into the Body and Blood of the crucified Savior. All present in the church should prepare for the Canon of the Eucharist with prayerful tremor and ardor; to prayerfully await the central part of the eucharistic mystery and the central part of the liturgical life with Christ.
(The Eucharist As Sacrifice Published by Serbian Orthodox Diocese of Eastern America, 1993, pp. 71-72 )

Remember the Students at St. Sava School of Theology - Libertyville

To Consider

Incorporating the account of the Good Samaritan into our lives.
Daily taking time to be good to our neighbors.
Seeking to increase the love of Christ in our hearts.

Recent Activities of Parish Priest

Participated in parish retreat on December 4.
Served Divine Liturgy at Holy Trinity Mission, Fairmont on December 5.
Assisted parishioners and friends of parish with transportation.
Participated in Robena Mine Memorial Program on December 6.

From the Desert fathers

They told of a certain old man that when his thoughts said to him, 'Let be to-day: thou shalt repent tomorrow,' he would contradict them saying, 'Nay, but I shall repent today: tomorrow, may the will of God be done.'


Twenty-Fifth Sunday After Pentecost-2003

Luke 10:25-37
The Good Samaritan

And behold, a certain lawyer stood up and tested Him, saying "Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?" He said to him, "What is written in the law? What is your reading of it?" So he answered and said, "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself." And He said to him, "You have answered rightly; do this and you will live." But he, wanting to justify himself, said to Jesus, "And who is my neighbor?" Then Jesus answered and said: "A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, who stripped him of his clothing, wounded him, and departed, leaving him half dead. Now by chance a certain priest came down that road. And when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. Likewise a Levite, when he arrived at the place, came and looked, and passed by on the other side. But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was. And when he saw him, he had compassion. So he went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine; and he set him on his own animal, brought him to an inn, and took care of him. On the next day, when he departed, he took out two denarii, gave them to the innkeeper, and said to him, "Take care of him; and whatever more you spend, when I come again, I will repay you. So which of these three do you think was the neighbor to him who fell among the thieves?" And he said, "He who showed mercy on him." Then Jesus said to him, "Go and do likewise."

The lawyer asked the question of Jesus: "What must I do to inherit eternal life?" Jesus confirmed the truth of his answer: "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all you mind, and your neighbor as yourself."

The Nativity Fast is an opportunity for each believer to assess whether he or she is on the road to eternal life. It is an opportunity for each believer to weigh whether he or she loves God with a complete mind, soul, strength and heart.

The Nativity Fast is an opportunity for the believer to assess whether he or she demonstrates consistent love of neighbor.

Each person knows the contents of his or her own thoughts. Each person knows the contents of his or her heart. Each person knows his or her daily actions. There are parts of each of us we do not know. God knows all about each of us.

In prayerful reflection and with honest analysis we can draw closer to God. Through fasting and prayer, we can develop a more accurate understanding of God and our compliance the expectations of God. Through charitable works, we can take steps to ensure care and concern and love for our neighbor.

The desert father Abbot Pimenion was asked "What is faith?" He answered: "To live ever in loving kindness and in humbleness, and to do good to one's neighbor." The Nativity Fast can serve to draw us closer to our neighbors.

The Nativity Fast increases in effect when each believer takes it serious. The Nativity Fast has greater results when each believer honors the fast. The Nativity Fast each year is a premier opportunity which is lost if it is not fully honored.

Everyone is not going to experience eternal life. The words of the Gospel of St. Matthew tell us the day will come when some will be sent to everlasting punishment and the righteous will be called to eternal life. (Mt.25:46)

The Lord Jesus Christ said: "Narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it." (Mt.7:14).

Each person answers for his or her actions to God. Each person is accountable for his or her actions in life. The evidence of each person's life cannot be changed or manipulated.

To experience the joy of the Christian life means adhering to the teachings of Christ. To experience the invitation to eternal life means living consistent with Christ's teachings.

If God wants our whole heart, giving God less is not being compliant. If God wants our complete mind, giving God less is not being compliant. If God wants our full strength, giving God less is not being compliant. If we are to love our neighbors as ourselves, doing anything less is not being compliant.

The present Gospel is an annual reminder of the need to live completely for God. At Baptism and Chrismation, our complete and total selves were dedicated to God.

The love God desires for our neighbor is clearly illustrated in the present Gospel message. We need the reminder of this lesson each year. Perhaps we become "dulled" through the year and need awakened.

Thank God for the lesson of the Samaritan. Thank God we have ears to hear the message of the Gospel. Thank God we have eyes to read the Gospel. Thank God we still have life that we may repent and redirect our lives.

If we direct our attention to God, if we direct our attention to the fullness of the Church, we will come to know and experience a greater joy. When we turn to God in completeness, we find life as God intended. We find the meaning of our lives as God so defines.

Being a Christian is a very serious and promising. Crucifixion of the flesh with its passions and desires is necessary. (Gal.5:24) "The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control." (Gal.5:22-23).

Each year we have the opportunity for renewal. Let us choose wisely.
St. George Serbian Orthodox Church, Carmichaels, Pennsylvania.
Twenty-Fifth Sunday after Pentecost.
November 24/December 7, 2003
St. Catherine the Great Martyr.

Fr. Rodney Torbic

Back to St. George Serbian Orthodox Church, Carmichaels - Home Page