St. George
Serbian Orthodox Church
Carmichaels, PA

Bulletin 326 - March 21 / April 3, 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
March 21 / April 3, 2005
Third Sunday of Great Lent
No. 326

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

I Timothy 6:12

Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, to which you were also called and have confessed the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.

Services This Past Week

March 27 - One person came for Midnight Office, Canon to Jesus Christ, Akathist to Communion, Matins and First Hour. Thirty six people came for Divine Liturgy. Six communicants.
March 29 - One person came for Midnight Office, Akathist to the Cross and Canon to Jesus Christ, First and Third Hours. Three people came for Great Compline.
March 30 - One person came for Midnight Office, Akathist to the Cross, Akathist to Communion, First and Third Hours. Two people came for Liturgy of Presanctified Gifts. Three people came for Great Compline.
March 31 - One person came for Midnight Office, Canon to Jesus Christ and Akathist to the Cross. Two people came for First and Third Hours. Three people came for the Akathist to Jesus Christ and Akathist to St. George.
April l - One person came for the Midnight Office, Akathist to the Cross and Akathist to Communion. Two people people were present for First Hour and Third Hour. Three people were present for Liturgy of Presanctified Gifts. Two people came for Great Compline.
April 2 - One person came for Midnight Office and Canon to Jesus Christ. Two people were present for the Akathist to Communion, First and Third Hours. Six people came to Divine Liturgy at Holy Trinity Mission-Fairmont. Two people came for Akathist to Jesus Christ and Vespers.

Services this Coming Week - Always Call to Confirm Weekday Schedule

Today - Midnight Office, Canon to Jesus Christ Matins, First Hour, Divine Liturgy. Parastos.
Mornings at 5:30 AM and 6:30 AM - Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday.
Wednesday and Friday at 8:00 AM - Liturgy of Presanctified Gifts
Afternoons at 4:30 PM - Monday, Tuesday, Friday. Saturday evening at 6:30 PM.

Remember Monastery Marcha with Prayers and Contributions

Important Dates

April 3 at 5:30 PM - Vespers, Sunday of Holy Cross, St. George Church, Midland.
April 7 - Feast of Annunciation
April 10 at 5:30 PM - Fourth Sunday of Great Lent, Vespers, Holy Resurrection Church, Steubenville
April 17 - St. George Church, Carmichaels, Vespers at 5:30 PM.
April 24 at 5:30 PM - Holy Trinity Cathedral, Pittsburgh, Vespers
April 25 - Great and Holy Monday
April 26 - Great and Holy Tuesday
April 27 - Great and Holy Wednesday

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

Parish Life

Sympathy extended to Tom and Jennifer Kornick. Tom's mother departed this life this past week.
It was good to see Pete Smargie in Church recently.
Three people came for Adult Class this past Thursday. Class this Thursday at 7:00 PM.
Thank you to the parishioners travelling to the Sunday Vesper services.
Honor the fast until the Divine Liturgy on Pascha.
Holy Trinity Mission will mark the Fifth Anniversary on April 15.
Listen to the weekly radio broadcast each Sunday.
Remember the sick, the homebound, those in hospitals, care homes, jails and prisons and rehab centers.
Remember those who are grieving the loss of loved ones.

A Thought from St. Athanasius

A very strong proof of this destruction of death and its conquest by the cross is supplied by this present fact, namely this. All the disciples of Christ despise death; they take the offensive against it and, instead of fearing it, by the sign of the cross and by faith in Christ trample on it as on something dead. Before the divine sojourn of the Saviour, even the holiest of men were afraid of death, and mourned the dead as those who perish. But now that the Saviour has raised His body, death is no longer terrible, but all those who believe in Christ tread it underfoot as nothing, and prefer to die rather than to deny their faith in Christ, knowing full well that when they die they do not perish, but live, indeed, and become incorruptible through the resurrection.
(St. Athanasius. On the Incarnation.. St. Vladimir's Seminary Press, Crestwood, New York, 1996, p. 57. )

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

To Consider

The Cross in the middle of the Church.
The Cross on Great and Holy Friday.
The healing power of the Cross.

Recent Activities of Parish Priest

March 27 - Travelled to St. Elijah Church, Aliquippa for Vespers.
March 28 - Travelled to St. Nicholas Church, Indianapolis, Indiana for Clergy Brotherhood Meeting.
March 29 - Travelled to Rehab Center in Morgantown to visit parishioner.
March 31 - Blessed four homes.
April 1 - Visited one parishioner in Uniontown, blessed residence.
April 1 - Attended funeral of +Joanne Kornick.
April 1 - Visited family member of parishioners in Uniontown Hospital.

From the Desert Fathers

A certain brother asked the Abbot Pimenion saying "What is faith?" And the old man said, "To live ever in loving kindness and in humbleness, and to do good to one's neighbor."

Third Sunday of Great Lent - Veneration of the Holy Cross

Mark 8:34-9:1

When He had called the people to Himself, with His disciples also, He said to them, "Whoever desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel's will save it. For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul? For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him the Son of Man also will be ashamed when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels. And He said to them, "Assuredly, I say to you that there are some standing here who will not taste death till they see the kingdom of God present with power.

When we come to Holy Baptism, we are immersed in the water. Our whole body is dedicated to Christ. We are anointed. We are sealed with the gift of the Holy Spirit. We profess Jesus Christ as King and as God. We renounce Satan and all his works and all his pride.

The Sunday of the Cross reminds us of the importance of being confessors for Christ. The Sunday of the Cross reminds us to make choices to follow and be faithful to Christ.

When we choose to follow Christ, we say "no" to life experiences in conflict with the teachings and life of Christ. When we say "yes" to Christ, we are required to say no to avarice, to gluttony, to pride, to the works of the Satan. We are required to say "no" to dishonesty, to immodesty, to untruthfulness, to stealing and lying and killing.

When we say "yes" to Christ, we are required to say "yes" to fidelity to Christ, to integrity, to high moral standards. When we say "yes" to Christ, we are required to say "yes" to soberness, to regular Church attendance, to participation in the Holy Mysteries of the Church, to faithfulness to Christ.

When we say "yes" to Christ, we are required to honor the fasts, to observe the feasts, to have a life founded in hope, to remain resolute in faith. When we say "yes" to Christ, we say "yes" to order in the Church. We say "yes" to iconography, to the Holy Scriptures, to the Virgin Birth, to the Death on the Cross, to the Resurrection, the Ascension and the glorious Second Coming.

When we say "yes" to Christ, we are making a lifelong commitment to be renewed every moment of time throughout life

We cannot remind ourselves too often of the Lord's words: "Narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it." (Mt. 7:14)

The Holy Apostle Paul determined to follow Christ in faithfulness. He determined to preach Christ with vigor. He told the Corinthians: "I determined not to know anything among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified." (I Cor. 2:1).

During this Great Lent, let us take time each day to consider the Cross of Christ. Let us take time each day to consider Christ taking on flesh and going to the Cross. Let us take time to consider the suffering of Christ for each person of each century.

The Cross looms large each and every Holy and Great Friday. The Cross looms large each Wednesday and Friday of the year. The Cross looms large because the Cross is large.

When time is taken to contemplate the message of the Cross, we come to know the humility of Christ exceeding all humility. When time is taken to contemplate the Cross, we come to know the Divinity of Christ shown forth in a singular way never to be duplicated.

The centuries have known martyrs for Christ. Martyrs take their inspiration from Christ. Martyrs draw their strength from Christ. Christ asks not more than He has given. Christ asks no more than He has done.

In the present Gospel, the follower of Christ is asked to take up his cross and follow Christ. Believers at times may want to avoid the serious responsibilities of being an Orthodox Christian. We need to heed the words in Revelation:" So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth." (Rev. 3:16).

Orthodox Christianity is a serious undertaking, Believes in Kosovo suffer daily as Orthodox Christians. Orthodox believers in other parts of the world suffer daily because they follow Christ.

In this country, Orthodox Christians are subjected to court decisions diluting the moral standards of the nation. Orthodox Christians are subjected to actions in the market place and in the entertainment world which promote lifestyles and activities in great contrast to the teachings of the Holy Gospel.

Today's Gospel is a call to responsible Orthodox Christianity. Today's Gospel is a call to follow the path of Christ as did honorable predecessors in the Serbian Orthodox Church.

Deacon Habakkuk's mother urged him to embrace Islam to save his life in Belgrade on December 17, 1814. The young deacon replied: "My mother, thank you for your milk, But for your counsel I thank you not: A Serb is Christ's; he rejoices in death." 1

Orthodox believers are expected to honor the baptismal commitment each day of each year from the time of baptism to the time of departure from this life. The road from the baptismal fount to the end of earthly life varies. We do not know the length of our days.

The Psalmist tells us to number our days. (Ps. 90:12). It is important that we make the best use of each day. It is important that each day be lived to the glory of God.
1St. Nikolai Velimirovic. The Prologue of Ohrid. Volume 2. Translated by Fr. T. Timothy Tepsic. Serbian Orthodox Diocese of Western America, Alhambra, California, 2002, p. 672.
St. George Serbian Orthodox Church, Carmichaels, Pennsylvania.
March 21 / April 3, 2005
Third Sunday of Great Lent
Venerable James Confessor.

Fr. Rodney Torbic

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