St. George
Serbian Orthodox Church
Carmichaels, PA

Bulletin 423 - February 5 / February 18, 2007


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
February 5 / February 18, 2007
Forgiveness Sunday
No. 423

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

Philemon 1:4-7

I thank my God, making mention of you always in my prayers, hearing of your love and faith which you have toward the Lord Jesus and toward all the saints, that the sharing of your faith may become effective by the acknowledgement of every good thing which is in you in Christ Jesus.

Services This Past Week
February 11
Midnight Office, Matins and First Hour were read.
Twenty-four people came for Divine Liturgy.
February 12
Midnight Office, Matins, First Hour were read.
Five people came for Divine Liturgy. One communicant.
Five people came for Ninth Hour and Vespers.
February 13
Midnight Office, Matins, First Hour were read.
Three people came for Ninth Hour and Vespers.
February 14
Midnight Office, Matins, First Hour were read.
Two people came for Ninth Hour and Vespers.
February 15
Matins, First, Third and Sixth Hours were read.
Four people came for Divine Liturgy. One communicant.
Father Dimitre came for the Akathist to Jesus Christ and Akathist to St. George.
Four people were present for the Akathist to Jesus Christ.
Five people were present for the Akathist to St.George.
One person came for reading of Ninth Hour and Vespers
February 16
Midnight Office was read.
One person came for Midnight Office, Matins and First Hour.
February 17
Ninth Hour and Vespers were held. Two people came.

Services This Coming Week - Always Call to Confirm Weekday Schedule

Today
Midnight Office, Matins, First Hour. Divine Liturgy.

Mornings
5:30 AM Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday.

Afternoons
Monday, Wednesday, Friday at 4:00 PM.
Tuesday and Thursday at 6:30 PM.

Wednesday and Friday
8:00 AM Liturgy of Presanctified Gifts.

Saturday
Divine Liturgy at 10 AM YWCA, Fairmont, W.Va

Remember Monastery Marcha with Prayers and Contributions

Important Dates

Tonight - Sunday of Forgiveness, Vespers at 5:30 PM Mckeesport
February 19 - Great Lent begins.
February 25 - Sunday of Orthodoxy, Pittsburgh, St.George Antiochian Church at 5:00 PM.
March 4 - Second Sunday of Great Lent, Vespers, Aliquippa at 5:30 PM
March 9-10 - Diocesan Assembly in Boston
March 11 - Third Sunday of Great Lent, Vespers in Midland at 5:30 PM.
March 18 - Fourth Sunday of Great Lent, Vespers in Monroeville at 5:30 PM.
March 25 - Fifth Sunday of Great Lent, Vespers in Carmichaels at 5:30 PM.
April 1 - Palm Sunday, Vespers at Holy Trinity Cathedral, Pittsburgh at 5:30 PM.

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

Parish Life

Honor the fast during Great Lent. Today is the last day to eat dairy products until Pascha.

Last Sunday was the last day to eat meat until Pascha.

Increase your prayers and church attendance.

Read your Bible daily for the benefit of your soul.

Pray for the men and women in the military and their families.

Prayer for miners and law enforcement and corrections and parole officers and others in dangerous occupations.

Pray for the sick, the suffering, the imprisoned, those in hospitals, rehab centers and homebound. Pray for those caring from them.

Pray for the suffering Serbian People in Kosovo.

Father Dimitre and three individuals came to Adult Class this past Thursday to discuss the Gospel for Palm Sunday. Class again this Thursday.

Do you listen to the parish radio program weekly?

Do you invite your friends and relatives to come to church?

Do you tell your friends and relatives about our Adult Classes and radio broadcasts?

Do you visit the parish website to hear the radio broadcast? Do you tell others?

When is the last time you came to church during the week? When will be the next time?

A Thought from Father Aleksander Elchaninov

Not all men can face a serious operation, not all those who confess their sins are capable of facing a real confession. Just as an operation-even if it is indispensable-can kill a patient, so the spectacle of his sinfulness, if suddenly called up from the depths of his soul, can deal a deadly blow to a man. One has to be indulgent and to feed the patient with fortifying medicine, until the right moment comes.

(Diary of a Russian Priest. St. Vladimir's Seminary Press, Crestwood, New York, 1982, p. 123 )

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

To Consider

Forgiving everyone offending us.
Seeking forgiveness for offending others.
Being forgiven by God

Recent Activities of Parish Priest

February 12 - Went to Diocesan Center.
February 12 and 14 - Went to Morgantown for printing.
February 17 - Visited one parishioner in Uniontown, blessed two rooms of parishioners at Beverly Healthcare, Uniontown

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"


Forgiveness Sunday

Matthew 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 your 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.

The time to invest in the Kingdom of God is at hand. The time to lay up treasures in heaven is at hand. The time of the Great Fast has arrived. The time to take the life in Christ seriously is at hand.

The Church asks us to begin the fast on good terms with each other. If we expect God to forgive us our many sins, we need to be forgiving of others.

Every time we say the Lord's Prayer, we say the words: "forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us." God's forgiveness of our sins is directly related to our forgiveness of others.

Great Lent is to be greeted with joyful anticipation. Great Lent is a form of basic training. Great Lent is a time to live in ways pleasing to God.

The services of Great Lent keep the focus on repentance. The services of Great Lent make us more sensitive to our sins and exhort us to turn to Jesus Christ for mercy and forgiveness.

Prayer, fasting and almsgiving heighten our awareness of God. Great Lent summons our attention to God. God is the source of life. God is the source of joy. In God we find our purpose and direction and meaning.

Great Lent can appear to be a long journey. To fast and pray and increase attendance in Divine services between now and Holy Week and then during Holy Week to Pascha can seem an arduous task.

Anything of value requires effort and commitment. What is of more value than the soul? The Lord Jesus Christ said: "For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?" (Mt. 16:26).

Great Lent is the time to give complete care to the soul. Great Lent is the time to withdraw from thoughts and activities which jeopardize the soul. Great Lent is the time to love God with all the heart, all the mind, all the soul. Great Lent is the time to love thy neighbor as thyself. (Mt. 22:36-40).

Use each day of Great Lent wisely. Make the best effort possible to live in faithfulness to God. Follow the calendar of the Church throughout Great Lent.

Read the daily Scripture readings shown on the calendar. Honor the fast one day at a time. Just as alcoholics are taught one day at a time to stay away from the bottle, Orthodox believers can stay away from practices that encourage sin one day at a time.

The Lord Jesus Christ said: "Do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble." (Mt. 6:34) Concentrate on the present day, each day to battle and avoid sin and remain close to God.

The desert father Abba Paul kept it simple and memorable when he said: "Keep close to Jesus."1 Keeping close to Jesus is what believers are supposed to do. We are never to distance ourselves from Jesus.

The Holy Apostle Paul spoke about the Lord in Athens in this way: "In Him we live and move and have our being." (Acts. 17:16-28). We do not have to look far for Jesus. We do not have to go far for Jesus.

We need to open our hearts to Jesus. We need to open our eyes to see Jesus. We need to open our minds and welcome Jesus into our lives.

Many activities we undertake keep Jesus at a distance. Many activities and thoughts we undertake have nothing to do with Jesus. Many thoughts and activities we enjoy are contrary to ways pleasing to Jesus.

The Divine services of Great Lent give strength and instruction to believers. Holy Confession and Holy Communion enable believers to be reconciled with Christ.

Great Lent is a joyful return to Christ. Great Lent is a journey of return to Christ much like the return of the prodigal son to the father (Lk. 15:11-32). Return to Christ involves forgiveness. Holy Confession involves forgiveness.

Today let us be serious about forgiveness. Let us forgive from the depths of our hearts. Let us forgive freely and completely.

Let us begin anew with the Lord as our Guide, our Nourishment, our Foundation and our Goal. Remember the words of the Psalmist throughout Great Lent: "Unless the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain who build it." (Ps. 126/127:1)

1The Sayings of the Desert Fathers. Translated by Benedicta Ward. Cistercian Publications, Kalamazoo, Michigan, 1984, p. 205.


St. George Serbian Orthodox Church, Carmichaels, Pennsylvania.
February 5 / February 18, 2007
Sunday of the Last Judgement.

Fr. Rodney Torbic

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