St. George
Serbian Orthodox Church
Carmichaels, PA

Bulletin 576 - January 18 / January 31, 2010

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 18 / January 31, 2010
Sunday of the Prodigal Son
No. 576

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

Romans 10:17

So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

Services Recently
January 22
Ninth Hour and Vespers were read.
January 23
Midnight Office, Matins and First Hour were read at St. George Church.
Eleven people came to Holy Trinity Serbian Orthodox Church in Fairmont, West Virginia for Divine Liturgy and Great Blessing of the Water.
The Monongahela River was blessed afterwards in Fairmont.
Ninth Hour and Vespers were held at St. George Church. Two people came.
January 24
Midnight Office, Matins and First Hour were read.
Third and Sixth Hour were read followed by Divine Liturgy.
Twenty-eight people attended the Divine Liturgy. Three communicants.
The Monongahela River was blessed under the Masontown Bridge.
One Kolach was blessed afterwards at a family Slava.
January 25
Midnight Office, Matins and First Hour were read.
Ninth Hour and Vespers were read.
January 26
Midnight Office, Matins and First Hour were read.
Akathist to St. Sava was served in the evening. Father Dimitre Dimitrov came to serve. Two additional persons attended.
January 27
Midnight Office, Matins and First Hour were read.
Four people came for Divine Liturgy.
January 28
Midnight Office, Matins and First Hour were read.
Vespers were read.
January 29
Midnight Office, Matins, and First Hour were read.
One person came for Akathist to Jesus Christ, Akathist to Kurst Root Icon and Akathist to St. Nicholas.
January 30
Midnight Office, Matins and First Hour were read.

Services This Coming Week - Always Call to Confirm Weekday Schedule

Midnight Office, Matins, First Hour. Third and Sixth Hour followed by Divine Liturgy, Blessing of Kolac' and Koljivo.

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

4:00 PM on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday.

6:30 PM Akathist followed by Adult Class at 7:00 PM

10:00 AM Divine Liturgy-Holy Trinity Church, Fairmont, W.Va.

Remember Monastery Marcha with Prayers and Contributions

Important Dates

Feburary 6 - Memorial Saturday
February 7 - Meatfare Sunday
Feburary 12 - Holy Three Hierarchs
February 14 - Forgiveness Sunday
February 14 - Presentation of the Lord (moved from the 15th)
February 15 - First Day of Great Lent

If you are too busy to are too busy!

Remember the Serbian People in Kosovo and All Suffering People.

Parish Life

Thank you to all parishioners staying for the Blessing of the Monongahela River.

Sympathy extended to the family and friends of +Mary Krevosky.

Thank you to all staying for the St. Sava Day dinner and program.

If you want to donate to help the suffering people of Haiti, please make your donations "For Haiti" and they will be forwarded to International Orthodox Christian Charities.

Remember the sick, the suffering, the imprisoned, those in rehab centers, the homebound, the mentally ill, their caretakers and the institution staffs.

Remember the men and women serving in the military and their families.

Remember the workers in mines, law-enforcement, corrections, probation and parole and firefighters, all working in dangerous occupations.

If you have a question about the services or the Church, ask Father Rodney.

Prepare regularly for Holy Confession and Holy Communion.

Honor your Slava every year.

Come to church on weekdays in addition to Sundays. Bring a friend.

Read the Church calendar each day and honor the feasts and saints.

Home blessings have begun and will continue as time permits.

Parishioners are welcome to call to schedule a convenient time for home blessings.

Adult Class this Tuesday at 7:00 PM. Three people attended last week.

Come to Adult Class and learn about the Divine Liturgy.

A Thought from His Grace Bishop Dr. MITROPHAN.

If the Holy Spirit is the "soul of the Church", then He should be the soul of each Christian in the Church. Not only this, He also brings about that our members work in accordance with all of the members of the Church, with the Body of Christ. When man feels in himself the Holy Spirit, then he will be conscious of how valuable he was before and that he is rich only in Him. He will be conscious that he was purchased for a great price, and that he is no longer his own, but God's (I Cor.6:20; cf. 7:23; I Pet.1:19-20; Gal. 3:13; Rev. 4:14). He will be humble before all the members and will give glory to the entire Body, and especially to the head of the Church, Christ.

(The Teachings of Saint Apostle Paul on the Church. Translation Protopresbyter Stefan Zaremba. 2001, pp. 63-64.)

To Consider

We all need to return as did the prodigal son.
We all need to be forgiving of the those returning in repentance.
We all benefit by loving our neighbors.

Recent Activities of Parish Priest

January 22 - Went to Morgantown for printing purposes.
January 23 - Served Divine Liturgy in Fairmont, W.Va. followed by Great Blessing of Water and Blessing of Monongahela River. Went to UPMC Presby to visit friend of St.George Church.
January 26 - Funeral Service and burial for +Mary Krevosky in Fairmont, W.Va.
January 27 - Attended a family Slava.
January 28 - Blessed four homes.
January 29 - Attended a family Slava.

From Psalm 43:3

Oh, send out Your light and Your truth! Let them lead me; Let them bring me to Your holy hill and to Your tabernacle.

Sunday of the Prodigal Son

Luke 15:11-32

Then He said: "A certain man had two sons. And the younger of them said to his father, 'Father, give me the portion of goods that falls to me.' So he divided them his livelihood. And not many days after, the young son gathered all together, journeyed to a far country, and there wasted his possessions with prodigal living. But when he had spent all, there arose a severe famine in that land, and he began to be in want. Then he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country, and he sent him into his fields to feed swine. And he would gladly have filled his stomach with the pods that the swine ate, and no one gave him anything. But when he came to himself, he said, 'How many of my father's hired servants have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger! I will arise and go to my father, and will say to him, "Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you, and I am no longer worthy to be called your son. Make me like one of your hired servants"' And he arose and came to his father. But when he was still a great way off, his father saw him and had compassion, and ran and fell on his neck and kissed him. And the son said to him, 'Father, I have sinned against heaven and in your sight, and am no longer worthy to be called your son.' But the father said to his servants, 'Bring out the best robe and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand and sandals on his feet. And bring the fatted calf here and kill it, let us eat and be merry; for this my son was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.' And they began to be merry. Now his older son was in the field. And as he came and drew near to the house, he heard music and dancing. So he called one of the servants and asked what these things meant. And he said to him, 'Your brother has come, and because he has received him safe and sound, your father has killed the fatted calf.' But he was angry and would not go in. Therefore his father came out and pleaded with him. So he answered and said to his father, 'Lo, these many years I have been serving you; I never transgressed your commandment at any time; and yet you never gave me a young goat that I might make merry with my friends. But as soon as this son of yours came, who has devoured your livelihood with harlots, you killed the fatted calf for him.' And he said to him, 'Son, you are always with me, and all that I have is yours. It was right that we should make merry and be glad, for your brother was dead and is alive again, and was lost and is found.'

Each person receives life from God. Each person capable of making decisions chooses whether to honor God and to give thanks to God. Many individuals choose to ignore blessings and life given by God.

Many individuals focus on their personal interests and needs. They give little thought to thanking God for countless blessings. When an accurate accounting of life takes place, all will find themselves as sinners. (Rom. 3:23)

Every individual to a degree makes poor use of the blessings and time of life given by God. When individuals realize personal sinfulness, return to God with a repentant heart is the best course of action.

Turning to God and beseeching the mercy of God, is always the best action. The prodigal son wasted the blessings he received. The faithful son failed to perceive the reason for his father's joy. Both sons had room to improve their lives.

Family relationships are not always ideal. Praying to God can help ease tensions and acrimony that may develop. The Lord Jesus Christ said: "With God all things are possible." (Mt. 19:26)

Centuries ago the Psalmist said: "Behold how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!" (Ps. 132/133:1) Believers benefit from turning to God in prayer when family relationships need improved.

The power of prayer can move mountains (Mt. 17:20). The power of prayer can close and open rain from heaven The Holy Prophet Elijah showed convincingly the power of prayer. (James 5:16-18)

Abraham demonstrated the power of prayer when he prayed to God and Abimelech, his wife and female servants were healed. (Gen. 20:17) Elisha prayed for the dead child lying on the bed and the child was restored to life. (2 Kings 4:32-35)

Prayer is turning toward God with a contrite heart. Prayer is the act of turning to God beseeching God's mercy and believing in God's love. Christ on the Cross is evidence of His love. Christ's Resurrection is evidence of His love.

Belief in the power of prayer is fundamental for the Christian. Practicing prayer with fullness of heart, mind and soul takes some doing. Christians are expected to be fervent.

The Lord Jesus Christ said: "Salt is good; but if the salt has lost its flavor, how shall it be seasoned." (Luke 14:34) Believers approaching Great Lent do well to return from the far country and seek refuge in God.

God rejoices in the returning sinner just as the father rejoiced in his returning son. (Lk. 15:32) Taking the first step to return to God and ways pleasing to God may be a source of trepidation.

The prodigal son didn't know how his father would react. As it turned out, the father was merciful. God is merciful to sinners serious about repentance. Fervent prayer to God enables sinners to begin anew.

Fervent prayer to God enables believers to discern the steps necessary to live in ways pleasing to God. Even the most well-intentioned believer will commit sins. Even the most well-intentioned believer must continue to repent throughout life.

While a person has breath and the faculty of mind, prayer to God is beneficial. Return to ways pleasing to God is beneficial. Woe to the person ending his or her life while estranged from God.

The prodigal son is a strong lesson showing that each believer, each sinner, is welcomed by God when he or she returns from a life of waywardness. Repent and pray everyday to return to God and live in ways pleasing to God.
St. George Serbian Orthodox Church, Carmichaels, Pennsylvania.
January 18 / January 31, 2010
Sunday of the Prodigal Son.
Sts. Athanasius the Great and Cyril, Archbishop of Alexandria. St. Maximus of Serbia.

Fr. Rodney Torbic

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