St. George
Serbian Orthodox Church
Carmichaels, PA

Bulletin 317 - January 17 / January 30, 2005

The Orthodox Faith

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
January 17 / January 30, 2005
Thirty-Fifth Sunday after Pentecost
No. 317

Remember to listen to the parish radio broadcast each Sunday afternoon at 12:15 on WMBS, 590 AM, Uniontown.

Luke 18:42

Then Jesus said to him, "Receive your sight; your faith has made you well."

Services This Past Week

January 23 - Fifteen people came for Divine Liturgy. One communicant.

Services This Coming Week

Today - Divine Liturgy.
Mornings - 5:30 AM and 6:30 AM-Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday.
Afternoons - 4:30 PM, Monday, Tuesday, Friday, Saturday. Thursday at 6:30 PM
Monday - Divine Liturgy at 10:00 AM, Holy Trinity Mission, Fairmont, West Virginia

Remember Monastery Marcha with Prayers and Contributions

Important Dates

Today - St. Sava Program and dinner following Divine Liturgy.
February 7 - St. Gregory the Theologian
February 12 - Holy Three Hierarchs
February 14 - Forefeast of the Meeting of the Lord
February 13 - Zaccheus Sunday
February 15 - Meeting of the Lord
February 20 - Sunday of the Publican and the Pharisee
February 21 - St. Sava II of Serbia
February 22 - Apodasis of Presentation
February 26 - St. Simeon the Myrrhflowing
February 27 - Sunday of the Prodigal Son
March 6 - Meatfare Sunday
March 13 - Forgiveness Sunday
March 14 - Beginning of Great Lent
March 20 - Sunday of Orthodoxy
March 27 - Second Sunday of Great Lent, St. Gregory Palamas
April 2 - Third Sunday of Great Lent.
April 7 - The Annunciation of Our Most Holy Lady the Theotokos and Ever-Virgin Mary
April 10 - Fourth Sunday of Great Lent, St. John Climacus
April 17 - Fifth Sunday of Great Lent, St. Mary of Egypt
April 24 - The Entry of the Lord into Jerusalem, Palm Sunday

If you are too busy to are too busy!

Parish Life

Today we celebrate St. Sava.
Thank you to all supporting the St. Sava celebration today.
Thank you to the Kolo bakers working this past week.
Thank you to all contributing for the tsunami victims.
A special collection will be taken next week for the St. Sava School of Theology.
Remember those serving in the military and their families.
Remember the homebound, those in hospitals, care centers, rehab programs, jails, prisons and nursing homes.
Remember the suffering Serbian People in Kosovo and Metohijia.
Remember those who are grieving for loved ones departed this life.
Try to come to weekday services one additional day per month.
Follow the calendar of the Church, Read your Bibles daily.

A Thought from St. Athanasius

You must understand why it is that the Word of the Father, so great and so high has been made manifest in bodily form. He has not assumed a body as proper to His own nature, far from it, for as the Word He is without body. He has been manifested in a human body for this reason only, out of the love and goodness of His Father, for the salvation of us men.
(St. Athanasius. On the Incarnation.. St. Vladimir's Seminary Press, Crestwood, New York, 1996, p. 26. )

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

To Consider

Jesus Christ taking on human flesh.
The relationship of each individual to Jesus Christ.
Jesus Christ in the hearts of believers.

Recent Activities of Parish Priest

January 23 - Was present at the Blessing of the River by His Eminence Archbishop KYRIL.
January 23-28 - Visited Monastery Marcha.
January 29 - Attended Diocesan Council Meeting at Headquarters in Mars, Pa.

From the Desert Fathers

The old man said that a brother asked Abba Pambo if it is good to praise one's neighbor and that the old man said to him, 'It is better to be silent.'

Thirty-Fifth Sunday After Pentecost 2005

Luke 18:35-43

Then it happened, as He was coming near Jericho, that a certain blind man sat by the road begging. And hearing a multitude passing by, he asked what it meant. So they told him that Jesus of Nazareth was passing by. And he cried out, saying, "Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!" Then those who went before warned him that he should be quiet; but he cried out all the more, "Son of David, have mercy on me!" So Jesus stood still and commanded him to be brought to Him. And when he had come near, He asked him, saying, 'What do you want Me to do for you?' He said, "Lord, that I may receive my sight." Then Jesus said to him, "Receive your sight; your faith has made you well." And immediately he received his sight, and followed Him, glorifying God. And all the people, when they saw it gave praise to God.

St. Anthony the Great

Luke 6:17-23

And He came down with them and stood on a level place with a crowd of His disciples and a great multitude of the people from all Judea and Jerusalem, and from the seacoast of Tyre and Sidon, who came to hear Him and be healed of their diseases, as well as those who were tormented with unclean spirits. And they were healed. And the whole multitude sought to touch Him and be healed of their diseases, as well as those who were Tormented with unclean spirits. And they were healed. And the whole multitude sought to touch Him, for power went out from Him and healed them all. Then He lifted up His eyes toward His disciples, and said; "Blessed are you poor, for yours is the kingdom of God. Blessed are you who hunger now, for you shall be filled. Blessed are you who weep now, for you shall laugh. Blessed are you when hate you and when they exclude you, and revile you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of Man's sake. Rejoice in that day and leap for joy. For indeed your reward is great in heaven. For in like manner their fathers did to the prophets."

Today we come to the Thirty-Fifth Sunday after Pentecost. We hear the Holy Gospel of St. Luke. We learn of the blind man along the road receiving his sight. Jesus Christ healed the man.

Lessons of faith appear often in Holy Scripture. Wise individuals heed the lessons. Lessons of faith enrich our lives and give us direction for the future. Wise individuals are open to change and growth in Christ.

Today the Holy Orthodox Church commemorates the life of St. Anthony the Great. St. Anthony was a recluse, an ascetic who spent his time with God. St. NIKOLAI described St. Anthony as an instructor of instructors and teacher of teachers who perfected himself throughout his life and in this way perfected many others. 1

How often do we heed the lessons of Holy Scripture? How often do we immerse our lives in the life of Christ? How much of each day do we spend with God and contemplating God? How much of our energy is devoted to combating sin and perfecting ourselves in the way of God?

This is the time of the year Serbian Orthodox Christians celebrate the life of St. Sava. This is the time of the year the attributes of St. Sava enduring through the centuries are held before the world as lasting lessons of life.

How many of our homes reflect the faith of St. Sava each day of the year? How many of our homes can be identified by appearance as homes of the faith of St.Sava? How many of our lives are patterned after the life of St. Sava...a life of prayer...a life valuing learning...a life bringing peace to others? How many of our homes and lives reflect each day that we are Serbian Orthodox Christians?

St. Athanasius preserved these words from St. Anthony about the life in Christ which still hold value: "Make it your endeavor to keep up your enthusiasm as though you were but now beginning. You know the demons and their designs, you know how fierce they are, yet how powerless. So, do not fear them; rather, let Christ be your life's breath, and place your confidence in Him." 2

The road of life can be a long one from birth to departure from this life. We know from the Psalmist the average life is seventy to eighty years (Ps.89/90) Many people live much longer.

Faithfulness to Christ from infant baptism to departure from this life requires a firm commitment to Christ and a steadiness in vision and purpose. Failures and errors can readily occur. Fortunately God is a loving and forgiving God. Fortunately, God receives those who repent. Fortunately, God strengthens believers and provides new life through His Church and the Holy Mysteries.

We learn the value of faith from the blind man in today's Gospel. We learn the value of reaching out to Christ from the blind man in today's Gospel. We learn of the healing power of Christ from the blind man in today's Gospel.

There is always something new to learn in Christ. There is always value in concentrating one's life in Christ. There is no better course of life than following the life in Christ.

In Christ, we gain our understanding of life. In Christ, we establish our worldview. In Christ, we find strength and love and understanding.

When we take time to learn of Christ's taking on human flesh, when we take time to concentrate on Christ teachings and miracles, we invest in the kingdom of God.

In the Holy Gospel we find the prism to see all things. In the Holy Gospel begin to see the world as Christ would have us see it. In the Holy Gospel we learn of the majesty of God. We learn of the greatness of God. We learn of the love and forgiveness of God.

In the Holy Gospel we learn how shortsighted we are. We learn how sinful we are. We learn how unappreciative we are. In the Holy Gospel we learn how Christ lifts lives from the depths and raises them to heights unimaginable.

We choose how we will live each day. St. Sava chose to live his life in Christ. St. Nikolai chose to live his life in Christ. St. Anthony and St. Athanasius chose to live their lives in Christ. The blind man along the road to chose to reach out in faith to Christ. What are the choices we make regarding Christ?
1St. Nikolai Velimirovic. The Prologue of Ohrid. Vol. One. Translated by Fr. T. Timothy Tepsic. Serbian Orthodox Diocese of Western America, Alhambra, California, 2002, p. 63.
2St. Athanasius. The Life of St. Anthony. Translated by Robert. T. Meyer. Newman Press, New York, 1978, p.95.

St. George Serbian Orthodox Church, Carmichaels, Pennsylvania.
January 17 / January 30, 2005
Sunday after Theophany.
St. Gregory of Nyssa.

Fr. Rodney Torbic

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