St. George
Serbian Orthodox Church
Carmichaels, PA

Bulletin 268 - February 9/February 22, 2004




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

February 9/February 22, 2004
Sunday of Forgiveness - Cheesefare Sunday
No. 268



Hebrews ll:40-12:1

And all these, having obtained a good testimony through faith, did not receive the promise, God having provided something better for us, that they should not be made perfect apart from us.

Services This Past Week

February 12 - Four people came for Vespers.
February 15 - Twenty five people came for the service served by Father Deacon John Oleynik.
February 16 - One person came for Matins and First Hour. T hree people came for Ninth Hour and Vespers.
February 17 - Two people came for Matins and First Hour. Four people came for Ninth Hour and Vespers.
February 18 - Two people came for First, Third and Sixth Hours. Three people came for Ninth Hour and Akathists to Jesus Christ and to the Cross.
February 19 - Two people came for Matins and First Hour. Six people came for Vespers.
February 20 - Two people came for First, Third and Sixth Hour. Two people came for Akathist to the Passion of Christ and Akathist to the Cross.
February 21 - Two people came for Matins and First Hour. One person came for Ninth Hour and Vespers.

Services This Coming Week - Call to Confirm Weekday Times

Today - Divine Liturgy is held each Sunday at 10:00 AM except on Pascha when it is held earlier.
Morning Services - Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday at 6:30 AM.
Liturgy of Presanctified Gifts - Wednesday and Friday at 8:00 AM.
Afternoon services - Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday at 4:30 PM. Thursday at 6:30 PM.
Saturday - Divine Liturgy, Holy Trinity Mission, Fairmont at 10:00 AM.

Remember Monastery Marcha with Prayers and Contributions

Important Dates

February 22 - Forgiveness Sunday, St. Sava Church, Mckeesport. Vespers.
February 2 - See Bulletin Board for Services and Activities of Orthodox Clergy Brotherhood
February 29 - Sunday of Orthodoxy- Holy Ascension Church, Youngwood. Vespers
March 7 - Second Sunday of Great Lent, St. George Church, Carmichaels. Vespers
March 14 - Third Sunday of Great Lent, St. George Church, Midland. Vespers
March 21 - Fourth Sunday of Great Lent, St. Nicholas Church, Monroeville. Vespers

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

Parish Life

Thank you to all helping the Kolo with baking. Helpers continue to be needed.
Six people came to Adult Class on February 12. Nine people came to Adult Class on February 19. The Diaconate was discussed on the 12th. Women in the Church was the topic of discussion on the 19th. Class will be held this Thursday at 7:00 PM.
Home blessings will continue until each home is blessed. Parishioners need not call to schedule an appointment as each home will be contacted. If you are in a hurry or have a particular request, please call.
Remember to listen to the parish radio broadcast each Sunday afternoon at 12:15 on WMBS, 590 AM, Uniontown.
The parish lenten retreat is tentatively scheduled for Saturday, March 20.
May God give comfort and strength to the family and friends of +Michael Kotch.

A Thought from Very Reverend Stavrofor Vojislav Dosenovich

As you can see there are two ways. The way of man, and the way of God; the way of power and the way of love; the way of earth and the way of heaven, and the way of self-deception and the way of truth. Which one is ours? If it is still SPLIT then we should have learned a bitter lesson and try to correct it. Did we mature enough to see that the way of God is the only way, today and in the future? Then let us replace this split with a joining, wherever possible.
(Spiritual Reminder, p.34 )

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

To Consider

Forgiveness in our homes.
Forgiveness in our parish.
Forgiveness in our workplaces.
Forgiveness in our neighborhood.
Forgiveness in our families.
Forgiveness in our communities.
Forgiveness in organizations to which we belong.
Forgiveness among friends.

Recent Activities of Parish Priest

February 13-15 - Travelled to St. Petersburg, Florida for Diocesan Assembly.
February 16 - Blessed four homes.
February 17 - Blessed three homes.
February 20 - Blessed three homes.
February 21 - Visited parishioner at Ruby Memorial Hospital, Morgantown. Visited parishioner at Allegheny General Hospital, Pittsburgh.

From the Desert fathers

A brother asked Abba Tithoes, 'How should I guard my heart?' The old man said to him, 'How can we guard our hearts when our mouths and our stomachs are open?'


Forgiveness Sunday

Mt. 6:14-21

For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive their trespasses. Moreover, when you fast, do not be like the hypocrites, with a sad countenance. For they disfigure their faces that they may appear to men to be fasting. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward. But you, when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face, so that you do not appear to men to be fasting, but to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly. Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

This is the Sunday of Forgiveness. This is the doorway to Great Lent. The journey to Pascha is beginning. If we are serious about the Lord Jesus Christ, we will pay attention to each day between now and Pascha.

We will concentrate on the journey of the Holy Orthodox Church. We will think about the services of the Church and attend as many as we possibly can. We will honor the fast of the Church as best as we possibly can each day until the Divine Liturgy on Pascha.

The lenten journey is a voluntary journey. Orthodox Christians are expected to honor the Church during Great Lent. Orthodox Christians are expected to participate in Great Lent with due seriousness.

More is involved in Great Lent than abstaining from meat or dairy products for a period of time. Believers are expected to pray more. Believers are expected to give alms to a greater degree. Believers are expected to repent of their sins.

If we listen carefully to the words of the services during Great Lent, we will increase in knowledge. We will thing carefully about our relationship with God. We will think carefully about our relationships with each other.

The Cross of Christ will be on our minds if we are serious during Great Lent. Christian growth will be on our minds if we are attentive during Great Lent.

The many sins we have committed will be apparent if we are honest with ourselves during Great Lent.

Individuals choose to be Orthodox Christians. The choice is made at Holy Baptism. The choice is renewed each day.

The Church directs the minds of believers back to the creation of the world during Great Lent. The Church directs the minds of believers to many Old Testament readings during Great Lent.

Believers have the opportunity to attend the Liturgy of Presanctified Gifts during Great Lent. Believers are encouraged to come to Holy Confession and Communion during Great Lent.

Our way of living should change during Great Lent. We should be more introspective. We should consider the teachings of our Lord Jesus Christ more. We should measure the way we have lived against the goal of the kingdom of God.

We have only one earthly life to live. We have a finite number of days to live. We have each day only once.

The remaining days of our lives are opportunities to correct any past wrongs and to right the direction of our lives.

The parish church is open each day for prayer. The parish church is open each day for the worship of God. Opportunities exist throughout the week for Holy Confession.

The way we live our lives in our homes greatly influences the degree of Christian growth we will experience. The way we utilize the time we spend each day greatly influences the degree of Christian growth we experience.

Each of us knows the content of our thoughts. Each of us knows the content of our hearts. Each of us knows the sinfulness of which we are guilty.

God knows the contents of our hearts. God knows the contents of our minds. God knows the extent of our sinfulness.

Love is an essential and dominant part of the Christian life. We can measure our Christianity by the love we exhibit. We can measure of Christianity by the forgiveness and kindness we exhibit.

Jesus Christ showed His love for each of us when He voluntarily went to the Cross. St. John the Evangelist and Theologian tells us "If someone says, "I love God' and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen, how can he love God whom he has not seen?" (I Jn.4:5)

The present Gospel emphasizes forgiveness. Today, everywhere Orthodox Christians worship, the theme of forgiveness will receive attention. The Church dedicates this day each year at the beginning of Great Lent to forgiveness.

Each of us determines the degree to which we are forgiving. The Lord's Prayer associates our forgiveness with forgiveness we expect from God.

We can grow in Christ in ways beyond our comprehension when we are serious. We can experience forgiveness beyond our comprehension when we are forgiving.

The love of God shown on the Cross reaches through the centuries to each heart. Every believer knows the love of God when he or she repents and seeks the kingdom of God.

The power of God's love heals. The power of God's love restores. The power of God's love is inexhaustible.
St. George Serbian Orthodox Church, Carmichaels, Pennsylvania.
Forgiveness Sunday.
February 9/February 22, 2004

Fr. Rodney Torbic

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