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
Cellular Phone 412-860-0944
Religion is losing its influence in America, and we all know why. It is losing
its influence because we are trying to get to heaven by using a push-button elevator,
instead of the narrow road, recommended by Christ. It is losing its influence
because too many people love Christ, and very few are willing to carry His cross.
It is losing its influence because we have made it too easy and there is no
challenge in it. Christ’s road is a challenge, and Christian religion must be
a challenge. Only by becoming once again a challenge can Christian religion gain
its influence and respect.
December 12 / December 25, 2011
Twenty-Eighth Sunday after Pentecost
1972 Calendar of the Serbian Orthodox Church in the United States of America
Remember the Students at St. Sava School of Theology, Libertyville, Illinois
The approach of the Feast of the Nativity.
Preparation for the Feast of the Nativity.
The love of Christ revealed in His Nativity.
Recent Activities of Parish Priest
December 17 - Funeral of +Stella Shlosky.
December 17 - Went to Morgantown, W.Va. for printing purposes.
December 21 - Pastoral visit at grave side
December 21 - Baptism/Chrismation in Fairmont, W.Va.
My son, keep your father’s command, and do not forsake the law of your mother.
The Twenty-Eighth Sunday after Pentecost
Then He said to him, “A certain man gave a great supper and invited many,
and sent his servant at supper time to say to those who were invited, ‘Come,
for all things are now ready.’ But they all with one accord began to make excuses.
The first said to him, ‘I have bought a piece of ground, and I must go and see it.
I ask you to have me excused.’ And another said, ‘I have bought five yoke of oxen,
and I am going to test them. I ask you to have me excused.’ Still another said,
‘I have married a wife, and therefore I cannot come.’ So that servant came and
reported these things to his master. Then the master of the house, being angry,
said to his servant. ‘Go out quickly into the streets and lanes of the city,
and bring in here the poor and the maimed and the lame and the blind.’ And the
servant said, ‘Master, it is done as you commanded, and still there is room.’
Then the master said to the servant, ‘Go out into the highways and hedges,
and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled. For I say to you
that none of those men who were invited shall taste my supper.’”
The Lord God holds a banquet each time the Divine Liturgy is celebrated.
Believers throughout the world are invited to the banquet. A small number of
individuals choose to attend the Divine Liturgy and participate in the banquet.
A very small number of believers choose to partake of the Precious Body
and Blood of Christ. The individuals choosing to partake of the Precious Body
and Blood of Christ are united with Christ and are transformed.
Individuals coming to the Divine Liturgy are enriched by the content of the service.
Individuals are strengthened by the Holy Gospel. Individuals choosing to attend the
Divine Liturgy draw near to the Lord God.
Believers are created in the image and likeness of God
Accepting the invitation to attend the Divine Liturgy is an expression of appreciation
to God. Believing in God and attending the Divine Liturgy is a matter of free choice.
Christian love is the prevalent rule in attending the Divine Liturgy and the
prevalent rule for all actions of believers. The First Epistle of St. John states:
“He who does not love does not know God, for God is love.”
(I Jn .4:8)
The Gospel of St. John states: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only
begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”
Serious believers find the greatest value in attending the Divine Liturgy. Serious
believers structure their week and their lives to include attending the Divine Liturgy.
Christians are subject to many different pressures and stresses. Attending the
Divine Liturgy is the way to put pressures and stresses into perspective. Saying “yes”
to God first in life establishes God as the priority of life.
Joy is found in God. Joy is a fruit of the Holy Spirit
Joy is not experienced without effort and commitment.
Living the Christian life requires effort and commitment.
Individuals invited to the banquet in the current Gospel lesson had a variety of
reasons for declining the invitation. Individuals decline to follow the Lord Jesus
Christ for various reasons.
Some people are too busy to take time for God. Individuals engage in many different
personal pursuits that will take them far from the Kingdom of God. The Lord Jesus Christ
counsels believers to follow the narrow path.
Temptations abound in modern life. Many different activities are available to family
members in the present society. Peer pressure is an issue at all age levels. Financial
stress and an unstable economy as well as violence cause uncertainty.
Accepting God’s invitation to the Divine Liturgy is a step toward experiencing the
Kingdom of God. Partaking of the Precious Body and Blood of Christ brings unity with
Christ. Life in Christ is renewed.
At Holy Baptism individuals set out on the life-long journey toward the Kingdom of
God. Believers exit the baptismal fount with the best of intentions.
The newly baptized expect and are expected to say “yes” to God ‘s invitations.
Negative replies to invitations to draw near to God are not always overt.
Some are subtle and occur without much thought. Little by little a believer may
drift from narrow path to the broader way leading to destruction.
Corrective action is necessary if believers are to avoid departing this life without
having seriously repented of their sins. Corrective action is necessary if a person has
not repented and wants to experience the fullness of life in Christ.
Life’s destinations that are other the Kingdom of God do not offer the
same degree of joy and fulfillment as does the Kingdom of God.
The Lord Jesus Christ likens the kingdom of heaven with finding a pearl of great
price. Jesus said: “The kingdom of heaven is like a merchant seeking beautiful pearls,
who, when he found one pearl of great price, went and sold all he had and bought it.”
The time of earthly life is limited. Wise choices are necessary in the use of
the time of life. Invitations from God to draw near exist at every moment of time.
Accepting those invitations increases the fullness of a person’s life.
The more a person says “yes” to the invitations of God,
the more the person experiences the fruit of the Spirit
Each person is responsible for his or her personal choices.
In a parable told by the Lord Jesus Christ, the faithful and good steward was told:
“Enter into the joy of your lord.”
The joy of the Lord awaits those putting the Lord first in their lives
and saying “yes” to His invitations.
St. George Serbian Orthodox Church, Carmichaels, Pennsylvania.
December 12 / December 25, 2011
Twenty-Eighth Sunday after Pentecost.
Serbian Mother’s Day.
Fr. Rodney Torbic
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