St. George
Serbian Orthodox Church
Carmichaels, PA

Bulletin 470 - January 7 / January 20, 2008

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 7 / January 20, 2008
Synaxis of St. John the Baptist / Sunday after Natvity
No. 470

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

Ephesians 6:16

Above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one.

Recent Services
January 13
One person came for Midnight Office, Matins and First Hour.
Seventeen people came for Divine Liturgy, One communicant.
January 14
One person came for Midnight Office, Matins and First Hour.
Four people came for Divine Liturgy. One communicant.
Two people came for Ninth Hour and Vespers.
Pomen at funeral home for Michael Miscovich.
January 15
One person came for Midnight Office, Matins and First Hour.
Funeral service at funeral home for Michael Miscovich with burial in St. George Cemetery.
Two people came for Ninth Hour and Vespers.
January 16
One person came for Midnight Office, Matins, First Hour.
January 17
Father Aleksa Micich came to help with Midnight Office.
Three people came for Akathist to Jesus Christ and Akathist to the Cross.
January 18
One person came for Royal Hours, First, Third, Sixth and Ninth.
One person came for Akathist to Jesus Christ and Akathist to the Cross.
January 19
One person came for Matins.
Six people came for Divine Liturgy. One communicant.
Two people came for Ninth Hour and Vespers.

Services This Coming Week - Always Call to Confirm Weekday Schedule

Midnight Office, Matins, First Hour, Divine Liturgy, Blessing of Monongahela River.

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

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday at 4;00 PM.

Thursday 6:30 PM followed by Adult Class

10:00 AM Divine Liturgy at Holy Trinity Mission, Fairmont, Blessing of River in Fairmont, W.Va.

Remember Monastery Marcha with Prayers and Contributions

Important Dates

January 20 - Synaxis of Holy Glorious Prophet, Forerunner and Baptist John. Blessing of Monongahela River following Divine Liturgy today.
January 27 - St. Sava Day-Covered dish dinner and program.
January 29 - Veneration of Precious Chains of St.Peter
January 31 - St. Athanasius the Great
February 7 - St. Gregory the Theologian
February 12 - Holy Three Hierarchs
February 15 - The Meeting of our Lord, God and Saviour Jesus Christ

If you are too busy to are too busy!

Parish Life

Aaron Carson gave a presentation in the Adult Class on the Darr Mine Disaster. Five people attended in addition to Aaron.

Protopresbyter Toma Stojsich, Protopresbyter Djokan Majstorovic, Reverend Father Zoran Radovic and Reverend Father Aleksa Micich visited St. George parish this week.

Plan to attend the river blessing after the Divine Liturgy today.

Plan to attend the St. Sava program next week.

Thank you to all participating in the Annual meeting last week.

Remember the men and women working in dangerous occupations this feast day.

Remember the sick, the suffering, the imprisoned, those in rehab centers, nursing homes, jails and prisons.

Remember the Suffering Serbian People in Kosovo and Metohija.

Remember the men and women serving in the military.

If you have not been to Holy Confession and Communion recently, prepare yourself to come.

Being in Communion means partaking of Christ's Precious Body and Blood.

Experience the forgiveness of Christ through Holy Confession and the unity with Christ through Holy Communion.

From St. Cyril of Jerusalem

Let no one suppose that Baptism is merely the grace of remission of sin, or further, that of adoption; as John's baptism bestowed only the remission of sin. Nay we know full well, that as it purges our sins, and conveys to us the gift of the Holy Ghost, so it is also the counterpart of Christ's sufferings.

(Lectures on the Christian Sacraments. St. Vladimir's Seminary Press, Crestwood, New York, 1077, pp. 61-62. )

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

To Consider

The waters of Baptism
The choice of the Jordan River for Christ's baptism.
Baptism as the entry into Christian life.

Recent Activities of Parish Priest

January 13 - Attended annual parish meeting.
January 14 - Pomen of Michael Miscovich at funeral home.
January 15 - Funeral for Michael Miscovich.
January 16 - Went to Holy Trinity Cathedral, Pittsburgh for beginning of Clergy Seminar.
January 17 - Attended Clergy Seminar on Stewardship at Holy Trinity Cathedral.
January 18 - Attended funeral of Lawrence Lazo Maravich, St. Elijah Church, Aliquippa.

From the Desert Fathers

He (Pambo) also said, 'If a man understands something and does not practice it, how can he teach it to his neighbour?"

Sunday after Theophany

Matthew 4:12-17

Now when Jesus heard that John had been put in prison, He departed to Galilee. And leaving Nazareth, He came and dwelt in Capernaum, which is by the sea, in the regions of Zebulun and Naphtali, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Isaiah the prophet, saying: "The land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, by the way of the sea, beyond the Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles. The people who sat in darkness have seen a great light, and upon those who sat in the region and shadow of death light has dawned." From that time Jesus began to preach and to say, "Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand."

Synaxis of the Holy Glorious Prophet, Forerunner, and Baptist, John

John 1:29-34

The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, "Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! This is He of whom I said, 'After me comes a Man who is preferred before me, for He was before Me. I did not know Him; but that He should be revealed to Israel, therefore I came baptizing with water." And John bore witness, saying, 'I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and He remained upon Him. I did not know Him, but He who sent me to baptize with water said to me, 'Upon whom you see the Spirit descending, and remaining on Him, this is He who baptizes with the Holy Spirit. And I have seen and testified that this is the Son of God."

The Feast of Theophany has arrived in the Holy Orthodox Church. Orthodox Christians focus on Jesus' baptism by in John in the Jordan for our salvation. 1

St. John the Baptist was chosen from among all men of all generations to have the unequalled honor of baptizing the Lord Jesus Christ. Our Lord Jesus Christ said: Assuredly, I say to you, among those born of women there has not risen one greater than John the Baptist..." (Mt. 11:11).

Given the stature and place of St. the Baptist in history, it is helpful to think about where and when he lived. He lived centuries ago prior to the development of the modern technology and the availability of personal conveniences.

St. John dressed simply in camel's hair with a leather belt. He ate simply. His food consisted of locusts and wild honey. (Mt. 3:4). Today the media emphasizes extravagant and elaborately designed clothing .

Restaurants, supermarkets and other food selling establishments offer a range of food choices and gourmet selections to satisfy any appetite.

The lifestyle of St. John the Baptist stands in stark contrast to today's commercial promotions . St. John's commitment to the Lord Jesus Christ was complete. He gave his life for Christ. (Mk. 6:14-29)

St. John continues to be a witness for Christ. St. John continues to influence individuals in contemporary society. Individuals are named "John" in honor and remembrance of St. John.

Churches are dedicated in honor and memory of St. John. Individuals and families celebrate the liturgical feasts of St. John as their patronal feasts. Prayers are offered to St. John the Baptist. Each Tuesday, the Holy Orthodox Church remembers St. John.

Violence is associated with Christianity. After Jesus' birth, Herod killed the young children under the age of two years. (Mt. 2:16-18).

St. John the Baptist and many others afterwards were killed because of their relationship with Jesus Christ. St. Stephen the Archdeacon and Protomartyr is an early example of a person being martyred for Christ. (Acts. 6:8-7:60)

The killing and violence has not stopped. At the present time in Kosovo individuals are persecuted because they are Serbian Orthodox Christians. Their lives are in jeopardy.

St. John was full of conviction about the Lord Jesus Christ. He proclaimed: "This is the Son of God." (Jn. 1:34) St. John experienced Jesus Christ in ways no other person has experienced.

Succeeding generation learn of Jesus' baptism in the Jordan. Succeeding generations learn of the faith and conviction of St. John. Serious individuals heed the example and testimony of St. John the Baptist.

Being a serious Orthodox Christian means being fully committed to the Lord Jesus Christ. Being a serious Orthodox Christian means being willing to live for Christ in all circumstances at all times.

The present Gospel includes Jesus' words: "Repent for the kingdom of heaven is at hand." (Mt. 4:17). Repenting and being fully immersed in and united with Christ is a continuous process for the serious Christian.

The joy of Christ is experienced in the personal relationship with Christ. John did not speak highly of himself. He spoke highly of the Lord Jesus Christ.

St. John said: "It is He who, coming after me, is preferred before me, whose sandal strap I am not worthy to loose." (Jn. 1:27). In these contemporary times when excess greed causes individuals to accumulate wealth in the millions and billions while others go hungry and are naked, let us think carefully about the simplicity of the life and witness of St. John the Baptist.

In these contemporary times when individuals go to extremes in outlandish behaviors and the corruption of moral life, let us think about St. John the Baptist who gloried only in the Lord Jesus Christ and was privileged to baptize Him.

Let us learn from St. John, pray to him and attempt to have the same commitment to the Lord Jesus Christ.

1The Divine Liturgy of St.John Chrysostom. St. Tikhon's Seminary Press, South Canaan, Pennsylvania. 1977,

St. George Serbian Orthodox Church, Carmichaels, Pennsylvania.
January 7 / January 20, 2008
Synaxis of St. John the Baptist

Fr. Rodney Torbic

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