St. George
Serbian Orthodox Church
Carmichaels, PA

Bulletin 688 - March 12 / March 25, 2012

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

Phone 724-966-7428
Phone/Fax 724-966-7780
Cellular Phone 412-860-0944

No. 688
March 12 / March 25, 2012
Fourth Sunday of Great Lent

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

I Timothy 6:20-21

O Timothy ! Guard what was committed to your trust, avoiding the profane and idle babblings and contradictions of what is falsely called knowledge---by professing it some have strayed concerning the faith. Grace be with you. Amen.

Recent Services
March 16
Midnight Office was read.
Canon for Matins was read.
March 18
Third and Sixth Hour were read.
Very Rev.John Kluchko served the Divine Liturgy. Twenty-seven people attended. Seven communicants.
March 19
Matins and First Hour were read.
Akathist to the Mother of God was read.
March 20
Matins and First Hour were read. Akathist to the Mother of God was read.
March 21
Matins and First Hour were served.
Father Zoran Radovic and Father Vladislav Radujkovic provided responses.
Akathist to the Mother of God was read.
March 22
Matins and First Hour were read.
Akathist to the Mother of God was read.
Nine people came for Great Compline to Holy Trinity Serbian Orthodox Church in Fairmont,West Virginia.

Services This Coming Week. Call to Confirm Weekday Schedule

Matins and First Hour.
Third and Sixth Hours followed by Divine Liturgy.

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

Wednesday and Friday
8:00 AM Liturgy of Presanctified Gifts

Wednesday Afternoon
3:00 PM Akathist followed by Adult Class.

Thursday, Friday and Saturday
4:00 PM Vespers

Akathists and Prayers for Special Needs Scheduled on Request During the Week

Remember Monastery Marcha with Prayers and Contributions

Important Dates

March 25 - Fourth Sunday of Great Lent. Vespers at Holy Resurrection Church, Steubenville at 5:00 PM
April 1 - Fifth Sunday of Great Lent. St. George Church, Carmichaels 5:00 PM. Lenten Vespers.
April 7 - Feast of Annunciation. Lazarus Saturday.
April 8 - Feast of Christ’s Entry in Jerusalem. Vespers at Holy Trinity Cathedra, Pittsburgh 5 PM
April 9 - Great and Holy Monday
April 10 - Great and Holy Tuesday
April 11 - Great and Holy Wednesday. Holy Unction. Holy Trinity Cathedral, Pittsburgh
April 12 - Great and Holy Thursday
April 13 - Great and Holy Friday

If you are too busy to are too busy!

Remember the Suffering Serbian People and All Suffering People throughout the World

Parish Life

Baked goods are needed for the Lenten Vespers next Sunday.

Volunteer to help with the dinner after the Lenten Vespers next week.

Very Reverend Stavrofor Toma Stojsich, Protonamesnik Zoran Radovic and Rev. Father Vladislav Radujkovic visited the parish this past week. They included a visit with Executive Board President Stan Brozik.

Kathleen Waters recently completed the first semester of the St. Stephen’s Orthodox Study Program.

Christina Sivak is very near to completing her studies to be a Nurse Anesthetist.

Stan Brozik, Sonia Janson, Milosh “Serb” Krewasky and Josephine Gresko attended the Lenten Vespers in Midland.

Congratulations to Dr. Ezekiel Olagoke for being chosen to present a talk on St. Gregory Palamas at an international conference on Orthodoxy held in Thessaloniki, Greece.

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

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

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

Seriously prepare for Holy Confession and Communion regularly.

Unless you live far distant from the church, please come to confession on Saturday evening or one of the weekday evenings when Vespers is scheduled.

Schedules of Lenten services in different churches are posted in the church hall. Try to attend

If you have a question about the teachings, practices or services of the Church, ask the priest.

A Thought from +Very Rev. Stavrofor Slobodan Prodanovich

However, the Church can use the media to demonstrate our spiritual strength and our commitment to the authentic teaching of Christ. These avenues can help us to educate, to influence, and to communicate with our own flock, as well as with secular society, rather than having the secular society transform the Church into its own image.

( “Reflections of Conscience.” The Path of Orthodoxy November-December 1979, p. 2. )

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

To Consider

--Great Lent is moving forward with certainty
--The services of Great Lent are well-specified.
--The services of Great Lent initiate change.

Recent Activities of Parish Priest

March 16-19 - Went to St. Milutin Serbian Orthodox Church in Jacksonville, Florida for St. Petersburg Deanery Clergy Confession and Christian Education Meeting.
March 21 - Went to Holy Trinity Cathedral in Pittsburgh for Clergy Confession.
March 22 - Went to Holy Trinity Serbian Orthodox Church in Fairmont, W.Va.

Proverbs 19:14

House and wealth are inherited from fathers, but a prudent wife is from the Lord.

The Fourth Sunday of Great Lent

Mark 9:17-31

Then one of the crowd answered and said, “Teacher, I brought You my son, who has a mute spirit. And whenever it seizes him, it throws him down; he foams at the mouth, gnashes his teeth, and becomes rigid. So I spoke to Your disciples, that they should cast it out, but they could not.” He answered and said to him, “ O faithless generation, how long shall I be with you? How long shall I bear with you? Bring him to Me.” Then they brought him to Him. And when he saw Him, immediately the spirit convulsed him, and he fell to the ground and wallowed, foaming at the mouth. So He asked his father, “How long has this been happening to him?” And he said, ‘From childhood. And often he has thrown him both into the fire and into the water to destroy him. But if You can do anything, have compassion on us and help us.” Jesus said to him, “If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes.” Immediately the father of the child cried out and said with tears, “Lord, I believe, help my unbelief!” When Jesus saw that the people came running together, He rebuked the unclean spirit, saying to it: “Deaf and dumb spirit, I command you, come out of him and enter him no more. Then the spirit cried out, convulsed him greatly, and came out of him. And he became as one dead, so that many said, “He is dead..” But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him up, and he arose. And when He had come into the house, His disciples asked Him privately, “Why could we not cast it out?” So He said to them, “This kind can come out by nothing but prayer and fasting.” Then they departed from there and passed through Galilee, and He did not want anyone to know it. For He taught His disciples and said to them, “The Son of Man is being betrayed into the hands of men, and they will kill Him. And after He is killed, He will rise the third day.”

Matthew 4:25-5:12

Great multitudes followed Him---from Galilee, and from Decapolis, Jerusalem, Judea, and beyond the Jordan. And seeing the multitudes, He went up on a mountain, and when He was seated His disciples came to Him. Then He opened His mouth and taught them, saying: “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted. Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be filled. Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God. Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God. Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake. Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.”

Becoming “new” in Christ is a continuing interest of serious believers. The Holy Gospel offers essential nourishment for the soul. The current Gospel of St. Mark emphasizes the importance of belief, prayer and fasting.

The Lord Jesus Christ was very clear. Jesus told the boy’s father that with firm belief, all things were possible. Jesus instructed the disciples that healing ailments such as experienced by the suffering child required prayer and fasting.

Being a Christian requires effort and concentration. Firm belief in Christ requires a serious interest in Christ and a willingness to pray with certainty. Fasting is a well-established Christian practice dating to the time of Christ.

Believers determine the degree they will heed the words of the Holy Apostle Paul when he said: “Let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.” (II Cor. 7:1)

Drawing near to Christ with prayer and fasting is central to the Lenten effort. Growth in Christ is emphasized this particular Sunday of Great Lent. This Sunday is devoted to St. John Climacus author of The Ladder of Divine Ascent.

St. John Climacus detailed the steps of Christian growth in his book: The Ladder of Divine Ascent. St. John Climacus focused on the linking together of faith, hope and love as the Thirtieth Step, the last step of growing in Christ. 1

In elaborating on the Thirtieth Step, St. John said: “He who loves the Lord has first loved his brother, because the second is proof of the first.” 2

Jesus took time to heal the afflicted child. Jesus took time to teach the child’s father and the disciples. Jesus has time to teach and listen to everyone coming to Him in faith. Jesus continues to show His love for each person.

Great Lent is advancing towards Holy Week. Serious believers will intensify their efforts to invest in the remaining days of Great Lent. The Church expects every believer to honor Great Lent.

Growth comes when Christ is the center of life. Growth comes when Christ is the foundation and goal of life. The current Gospel of St. Mark witnesses to the healing power of Christ. Every person is in need of Christ’s healing power.

Every person has blemishes of the soul that need healed. Every person has blemished thoughts that need eradicated. Every person utters words that should never have been spoken.

The amount and kind of food eaten affects a person’s energy and demeanor. Prayer and fasting are intended to keep the focus on Christ. St. John Climacus cautions: “Master your stomach before it masters you; and then you are sure to control yourself with the aid of shame.” 3

Great Lent involves control of the body and the mind with the specific purpose of growth in Christ. Prayer and fasting are efforts necessary for avoiding pitfalls in order to more fully experience Christ.

Experiencing the joy of Christ makes every effort worthwhile. The healed child in the current Gospel and the child’s father had every reason to be grateful. Believers are healed by Christ with great regularity. Christ deserves appreciation.

Forgiveness is a common form of healing by Christ. Holy Confession and Holy Communion are experiences manifesting healing by Christ. On this Fourth Sunday, let us seek the healing of Christ through increased prayer and fasting.

1 St. John Climacus. The Ladder of Divine Ascent. Holy Transfiguration Monastery. Boston, Massachusetts, 2001, p. 225.

2 Ibid. ,p. 228.

3 Ibid., p. 100.

St. George Serbian Orthodox Church, Carmichaels, Pennsylvania.
March 12 / March 25, 2012
Fourth Sunday of Great Lent.
St. Theophanes.

Fr. Rodney Torbic

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