Akathists and Prayers for Special Needs Scheduled During the Week on Request.
Fruit, fruit, and only fruit does the Lord seek from every living tree which is called a man.
Good fruit is a God-loving heart, and evil fruit is a self-loving heart. Everything else that
man possesses and enjoys---position, authority, honor, health, money and knowledge---are but
the leaves on the tree.
(The Prologue of Ohrid. Vol. One.
Translated by Fr. T. Timothy Tepsic. Serbian Orthodox Diocese of Western America, 2002, p. 24
Remember the Students at St. Sava School of Theology, Libertyville, Illinois
The fast days on the Church calendar throughout the year.
The feasts commemorated on the Church calendar each day.
The benefit of our honoring the Church calendar in our daily lives.
Recent Activities of Parish Priest
September 21 - Went to Morgantown, W.Va. for printing purposes.
September 22 - Went to Fairmont, W.Va. for Divine Liturgy.
September 24 - Went to visit a homebound parishioner for Confession and Communion.
From: Wisdom of Jesus, Son of Sirach
3:3-4 - He who honors his father atones for his sins; and he who honors his mother
is like one who stores up treasure.
The Seventeenth Sunday after Pentecost
Then Jesus went out from there and departed to the region of Tyre and Sidon.
And behold a woman of Canaan came from that region and cried out to Him, saying,
“Have mercy on me, O Lord, Son of David! My daughter is severely demon possessed.”
But He answered her not a word. And His disciples came and urged Him, saying,
“Send her away, for she cries out after us.” But He answered and said,
“I was not sent except to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.” Then she came
and worshipped Him, saying. “Lord, help me!” But He answered and said,
“It is not good to take the children’s bread and throw it to the little dogs.”
And she said, “Yes, Lord, yet even the little dogs eat the crumbs which fall
from their master‘s table.” Then Jesus answered and said to her, “O woman, great
is your faith! Let it be to you as you desire.” And her daughter was healed from
that very hour.
Sunday after the Elevation of the Precious and Life-giving Cross
When He had called the people to Himself, with His disciples, also, He said to them,
“Whoever desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and
follow Me. For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his
life for My sake and the gospels, will save it. For what will it profit a man if he
gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange
for his soul? For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful
generation, of him the Son of Man also will be ashamed when He comes in the glory of
His Father, with the holy angels.” And He said to them, “Assuredly, I say to you that
there are some standing here who will not taste death till they see the kingdom of
God present with power.
The Lord Jesus Christ spoke of the incomparable value of the soul in the Gospel of
St. Mark when he said; “What will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses
his own soul?”
Care of the soul deserves primary attention. Believers need to take care about the
content of the heart and mind to avoid putting the soul in peril. Believers need to take
care about daily thoughts and actions to avoid doing harm to the soul.
Believers need to be fervent in prayer and in constant repentance. Sin needs to
be put behind and the Kingdom of God deserves continued focus. God is the desired goal,
foundation and nourishment for daily life.
The mother in the current Gospel of St. Matthew is an inspiring example for believers
to follow. The mother’s strong faith was recognized by the Lord Jesus Christ.
The demon-possessed daughter was healed due to her mother’s faith.
The mother was persistent in appealing to Jesus to heal her daughter.
The woman’s persistence brought the wonderful result. Believers do well to be
persistent like the mother, not yielding to frustration or becoming tired in effort.
The Holy Apostle Paul said: “Let us not grow weary while doing good,
for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart.”
Prayer is always beneficial. Continuous prayer keeps the person untied with Christ.
Evagrios the Solitary said: “Persevere with patience in your prayer, and repulse the
cares and doubts that arise within you.” 1 Unity with the Lord Jesus Christ is
possible through consistent and concentrated prayer.
Believers seeking to care for their soul will heed the words of the Lord Jesus Christ
in the present Gospel of St. Mark. Followers of Christ are expected to deny themselves
and immerse themselves in the life in Christ.
Followers of Christ are expected to take up their personal crosses and follow Christ.
Problems in life are to be confronted through the life in Christ and according to the
teachings of Christ.
Facing crosses in personal life can be the means to achieve joy in Christ.
Individuals experiencing hardships turning to Christ in fervency of prayer and
by following the teachings of Christ will come to know the joys in Christ.
When hardships arise in life it is time to turn to Christ for the solution.
The Lord Jesus Christ said: Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am
gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.”
Christ is the best nourishment for the soul. The Lord Jesus Christ said:
“I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes
in Me shall never thirst.”
The journey to the Kingdom of God requires discipline to reject and avoid sin.
The journey to the Kingdom of God requires unity with Christ. Repentance and renewal
in Christ bring joy to the believer.
Believers do well to consciously remember the Cross of Christ and the Resurrection.
Believers do well to face personal crosses responsibly. Christ is to be honored and
sought in all efforts. Christ is to be the guide and the goal.
The mother with the demon-possessed daughter in the present Gospel of St. Matthew
is a lasting example of the value of turning to the Lord Jesus Christ for the healing
of soul and body.
Jesus healed the daughter and the family was changed forever. Many families have
experienced lasting changes due to a mother being serious in turning to Christ in prayer.
Many individuals have taken both of the present Gospels to heart and have begun
new lives in Christ. Renewal in Christ is always possible and is necessary for the
continued care of the soul.
Renewal in Christ brings to mind the words of the Holy Apostle Paul: ”We all,
with unveiled face beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being
transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.”
(2 Cor. 3:18)
The Philokalia. Vol. One.
Translated by G.E.H. Palmer, Philip Sherrard and Kallistos Ware. Faber and Faber,
New York, 1979, p. 58.
St. George Serbian Orthodox Church, Carmichaels, Pennsylvania.
September 17 / September 30, 2012
Seventeenth Sunday after Pentecost.
Sunday after the Exaltation of the Precious Cross.
Sophia and Her Daughters, Vera, Nada and Lubov.
Fr. Rodney Torbic
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