Sunday, March 18, 2018
Fourth Sunday of Great Lent and
Commemoration of John Climacus, Author of “The Ladder of Divine Ascent”
Tone 8 and Eothinon 8
Cyril, Patriarch of Jerusalem
Today’s Hymns and Readings
Apolytikion of the Resurrection – Tone 8
O Compassionate One, thou didst descend from the heights; thou didst submit to the three-day burial, that thou mightest deliver us from passion. Thou art our Life and our Resurrection, O Lord, glory to thee.
Apolytikion of St. John of the Ladder – Tone 8
The barren wilderness thou didst make fertile with the streams of thy tears; and by thy deep sighing thou hast given fruit through thy struggles a hundred-fold. Accordingly, thou hast become a star for the universe, sparkling with miracles. Therefore, O righteous Father John, intercede with Christ God to save our souls.
Apolytikion of the Nativity of the Theotokos – Tone 4
Thy nativity, O Theotokos, hath proclaimed joy to the whole universe. For from thee did shine forth the Sun of justice, Christ our God, annulling the curse, and bestowing the blessing, abolishing death and granting us life everlasting.
Kontakion for the Sundays in Lent – Tone 8
Verily, I, thy city, O Theotokos, inscribe to thee the banners of conquest, O defending soldier, and offer thee thanks as a deliverer from tribulations. And since thine is the unconquerable might, deliver me from sundry oppressions, that I may cry unto thee, Rejoice, O groomless bride.
Epistle – Hebrews 6:13-20 (Fourth Sunday in Lent)
Prokeimenon. Psalm 28.11, 1. The Lord will give strength to his people.
Verse. Bring to the Lord, O sons of God, bring to the Lord honor and glory.
BRETHREN, when God made a promise to Abraham, since he had no one greater by whom to swear, he swore to himself, saying, “Surely I will bless you and multiply you.” And thus Abraham, having patiently endured, obtained the promise. Men indeed swear by a greater than themselves, and in all their disputes an oath is final for confirmation. So when God desired to show more convincingly to the heirs of the promise the unchangeable character of his purpose, he interposed with an oath, so that through two changeable things, in which it is impossible that God should prove false, we who have fled for refuge might have strong encouragement to seize the hope set before us. We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner shrine behind the curtain, where Jesus has gone as a forerunner on our behalf, having become a high priest forever after the order of Melchizedek.
Gospel – Mark 8:34-9:1 (Fourth Sunday in Lent)
AT THAT TIME, a man came to Jesus, kneeling down and saying unto him, “Teacher, I brought my son to you, for he has a dumb spirit; and wherever it seizes him, it dashes him down; and he foams and grinds his teeth and becomes rigid; and I asked your disciples to cast it out, and they were not able.” And Jesus answered him, “O faithless generation, how long am I to be with you? How long am I to bear with you? Bring him to me.” And they brought the boy to him; and when the spirit saw Jesus, immediately it convulsed the boy, and he fell on the ground and rolled about, foaming at his mouth. And Jesus asked his father, “How long has he had this?” And he said, “From childhood. And it has often cast him into the fire and into the water, to destroy him; but if you can do anything, have pity on us and help us.” And 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!” And when Jesus saw that a crowd came running together, he rebuked the unclean spirit, saying to it, “You dumb and deaf spirit, I command you, come out of him, and never enter him again.” And after crying out and convulsing him terribly, it came out, and the boy was like a corpse; so that most of them said, “He is dead.” But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him up, and he arose. And when Jesus had entered the house, his disciples asked him privately, “Why could we not cast it out?” And Jesus said to them, “This kind cannot be driven out by anything but prayer and fasting.”
They went out from there and passed through Galilee. And Jesus would not have anyone know it; for he was teaching his disciples, saying to them, “The Son of man will be delivered into the hands of men, and they will kill him; and after he is killed, he will rise on the third day.”
Next week’s homework:
Hebrews 2:11-18 (Annunciation of the Theotokos)
Luke 1:24-38 (Annunciation of the Theotokos)
LITURGICAL NOTE: During Great Lent we celebrate the Divine Liturgy of St. Basil the Great.
MARCH 18, 2018 – FOURTH SUNDAY OF GREAT LENT – COMMEMORATION OF VENERABLE JOHN CLIMACUS, AUTHOR OF THE LADDER OF DIVINE ASCENT
We are pleased to welcome you to worship with us today. Please note that only Orthodox Christians who have prepared themselves with prayer, fasting and a recent confession may approach to receive Holy Communion. Everyone is welcome to reverence the cross and to partake of the blessed bread at the dismissal. Please introduce yourself to our pastor, and ask him about membership in the Orthodox Church.
MARCH IS ANTIOCHIAN WOMEN’S MONTH IN THE ANTIOCHIAN ARCHDIOCESE!
Mission Statement - The mission of St. Mary’s Antiochian Orthodox Church of Brooklyn, NY, is to love and worship God through participation in the liturgical life of the Church, and to live and teach the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We carry out this mission through education, outreach, fellowship, and works of mercy with love for each other, our neighbors, and our diverse world.
TODAY, MARCH 18 - We pray for the repose of the souls of the servants of God Violet Alekel, Alice Alekel, Michael Arout, Gladys Awad, Eleanor Couri, Dr. George B. Cury, James Deeb, Mary Farrah, Salwa Fauty, George Gehshan, Atina Hanna, Edward Jabara, Lorriane Jabara, Mary Kenan, Nicholas Khoury, Maurice Khzam, Alfred G. Makhoul, Nadima Makhoul, Violette Mahab, Laila Nassr, Beatrice Nebham, Thomas Russo, Walter Thabit, and William Zarick. Memory eternal!
The Bryant, Dalack, Ellias, Nassr, and Wallace Families offer Prayers of Oblation for the repose of the soul of the handmaiden of God Laila Nassr. Memory eternal!
Dr. Alice B. Farkouh offers Prayers of Oblation for the repose of the soul of the servant of God Dr. George B. Cury. Memory eternal!
NEXT SUNDAY, MARCH 25 – We will pray for the repose of the souls of the servants of God Raymonde Alexander, Mary Davis, Raphael Davis, Matilda Eyd, Sadie Fletcher, Mary Hamaty, Edward Hawa, Wahiha Hayek, Terez Ivantchev, Albert Kaidy, Nazem Khoury, Rose Klam, Fredrick Makhoul, Pamela Zraick Nakleh, Helen Nassoor, Michael Nassoor, Abe Saba, Olga Saba, Frederick Schroeder, Nabeah Shamas, Elias Shawah, Bikturia Zaher, and Edward Zraick. Memory eternal!
Dr. George and Kathryn Nassoor will offer Prayers of Oblation for the repose of the souls of the servants of God Helen and Michael Nassoor. Memory eternal!
The Family of Gloria Fadel will offer Prayers of Oblation and a 40-Day Memorial for the repose of her soul. Memory eternal!
HOLY BREAD – Rafik Mahab has offered the Holy Bread in memory of his mother, Violette Chammas for the month of March. Memory eternal! Donors are welcome for April and subsequent months for a donation of $35/week. George and Linda Salamy have made a donation for the rest of the year. Many years!
TODAY’S USHERS – Members of the Ladies of St. Mary’s will serve as ushers and readers during Antiochian Women’s Month. Mary Ganim, Yvonne Zrake, Rose Abdallah, and Lorraine Deeb will serve as ushers. Elsa Khzam, Susan Schocket-Obel, Carol Makhoul, and Mary Ganim will assist with the distribution of the Holy Eucharist. Dr. Alice Farkouh and Sonia Abou Naoum will read the epistle in English and Arabic, respectively. Please allow the Church School students, teachers and volunteers to receive Holy Communion first so that they can proceed to the classes and begin in a timely fashion. The ushers will assist us in proceeding row by row so that we can distribute Holy Communion “decently and in order.”
POST-COMMUNION PRAYERS – As the faithful approach to reverence the cross, receive a blessing and a piece of antidoron (holy bread) at the dismissal, a reader will read the Post-Communion Prayers of Thanksgiving. Please greet each other quietly as we reverently hear these prayers.
COFFEE HOUR – In the absence of a sponsor for this week’s Coffee Hour the Parish Council will place a basket on the table for our free will offerings. Thank you!
FOR THE INFIRM – Please remember our ailing brethren in your daily intercessions, especially, Lorraine Diahy, and Khalil Eid, (Hamilton Park), Dr. John Dalack, Susan Hadad, Louise Hamwi, Malak Karkenny, George Khoury, Jr., Victor Khoury, Loulou Malouf, Alfred Nahas, Susan Schocket-Obel, Elena Paris, Sebastian Rothhammer, Louis Savarese, Leon Smatt, Marie Tashji, Claudette Teen, Marianne Trabulsi (PA), Jim Thompson (NJ), George Trisciuzzi, and Rose Zrake (at home). If a member of your family is in the hospital or recuperating at home, please call the church office and let us know as soon as possible.
LENTEN LITURGICAL SCHEDULE – There will be Great Compline either at St. Mary’s or at St. Nicholas Cathedral each Monday night at 7:00 PM, the Divine Liturgy of the Presanctified Gifts each Wednesday at 7:00 PM, followed by a Pot Luck Supper and the Akathist/Madayeh/Salutations Service each Friday at 7:30 PM. The Parent Teacher Organization (PTO) will host a Lenten supper at 6:30 PM this Friday prior to the Madayeh. Great Vespers will continue each Saturday at 5:00 PM. Tomorrow’s Great Compline is at St. Mary’s.
FASTING DISCIPLINE – During Great Lent we no longer eat cheese, eggs, dairy, fish, wine and olive oil until Holy Pascha on April 8 except for the following days where there is limited katalysis: fish, wine and oil are permitted on the feasts of the Annunciation (March 25) and Palm Sunday (April 1). Wine and olive oil are permitted on all Saturdays and Sundays except Great and Holy Saturday when only wine is permitted.
ANNUAL PARISH MEETING – The Annual Parish Meeting elected Diana Kaiami, Dianna Kitchen, and Daria Mayrose to three-year terms on the Parish Council. The pastor appointed Anita Eyd, Wade Saadi, III, and Audrey Sahadi to one-year terms. The newly constituted Parish Council then elected Daria Mayrose as Chairman, Denise Alexander as Vice Chairman, Diana Kaiami as Treasurer, and Michael Regnier as Secretary. We congratulate the new parish officers and thank our departing members, Charles Bryant, Salvatore Gagliardi, and Carol Makhoul for their dedicated service. The assembly also approved the church beautification plan and authorized the Parish Council to borrow up to $200,000, pending the approval of the Metropolitan Archbishop.
EMAIL ADDRESSES – Please use the welcome card in the pew book racks to submit or update all your family email addresses so that we can contact our parishioners with timely news.
BROOKLYN CLERGY LECTURE SERIES – Steven Christoforou, Director of Youth and Young Adult Ministries for the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese, will speak on “Have We Been Doing Youth Ministry Wrong?” on Thursday, March 22, at Saints Constantine and Helen G.O. Cathedral, 64 Schermerhorn Street, at 7 PM. Light refreshments will follow.
SEMINARIANS – Our pledge envelopes for the month of March included a blue envelope marked “Seminarians.” Please use this envelope to support Metropolitan JOSEPH’s annual appeal on behalf of our theological students. Our minimum contribution as a parish is $500. If anyone is currently not receiving pledge envelopes, please see Fr. Michael or Parish Council Chair Daria Mayrose.
SACRAMENT OF REPENTANCE (CONFESSION) – The Great Fast is THE TIME for all believers to receive the Sacrament of Repentance (Confession). The pastor hears confessions by appointment and before and after all the divine services. Please do not wait until the last minute! If you would like to go to one of the other Orthodox priests in Brooklyn, feel free to do so, but inform the pastor.
ANTIOCHIAN VILLAGE – It’s time to sign up for Summer Camp at the Antiochian Village. Please do not delay as some sessions have already filled. Scholarship assistance is available. Please see Fr. Michael. Go to www.avcamp.org asap!
FOOD FOR HUNGRY PEOPLE – The traditional FFHP collection boxes are available in the narthex. Remember the least of Christ’s brethren by depositing your extra change at the end of each day, and return the box on or before Palm Sunday. God bless you! “Find out how much God has given you, and from it take what you need; the remainder is needed by others.” Blessed Augustine
ANTIOCHIAN WOMEN’S SCHOLARSHIP – Scholarships are available to women 26 years of age or older who are continuing their education in order to improve their circumstances and those of their families. Women must meet certain other requirements. See Fr. Michael, or go to www.antiochian.org/scholarships for applications and more information, or contact Laila Ferris, Grant Coordinator, at (915) 565-1088 or email@example.com. Application deadline is June 1, 2018.
SHAGOURY SCHOLARSHIP – The Edith Shagoury Scholarship Fund offers awards for the coming academic year to undergraduate and graduate students from St. Mary’s Church. The qualifications for these awards are parish participation, scholarship and financial need. The number and amounts of the scholarship vary depending on the return on the fund’s investment. Please see Marian Russo or Dr. Alice Farkouh for more information.
FRANCIS MARIA SCHOLARSHIP – The Antiochian Archdiocese awards several scholarships of $2,500 each to students attending an accredited 4-year college. Applications must be postmarked by May 15, 2018. For more information and other scholarships offered by the Archdiocese, go to www.antiochian.org/scholarships.
ANTIOCHIAN WOMEN RETREAT – Fr. Paul Matar will be the featured speaker for the Lenten Retreat of the Antiochian Women of the East (AWE) at the Antiochian Village on the weekend of March 23-25. The topic will be “Life after Death.” Information and registration are now open on-line at www.antiochianevents.com.
EASTERN DIOCESES PARISH LIFE CONFERENCE – Three parishes, St. George Church of Upper Darby, PA, Holy Ascension Church of West Chester, PA, St. Philip Church of Souderton, PA, will jointly host this year’s Parish Life Conference at the beautiful Antiochian Village Conference and Retreat Center in Ligonier, PA, from June 27-July 1. Information and registration are now open on-line at www.antiochianevents.com. Please register and make room reservations now in order to secure a place at the conference center itself.
WORD MAGAZINE – The Word is the official news magazine of the Antiochian Archdiocese. If you are a member of St. Mary’s Church in good financial standing and do not already receive a free copy of The Word, or would like to subscribe for $20 per year, or change your address, you can do so at www.antiochian.org/address-updates.
PHOTO CONTEST – The Bay Ridge Community Contest announces its annual Photo Contest for students (grades 5-12) and adults. Entries must be received by April 3. See the flyer on the bulletin board for more information.
PARISH WEBSITE – Did you know that we post the weekly bulletin on the web? Simply go to www.smaoc.squarespace.com/bulletin, and view the bulletin at home. Also, find us on Facebook.
PLEASE MAKE SURE all cell phones and pagers are turned off in church.
DATES TO REMEMBER
Monday, March 19 Great Compline @ St. Mary’s, 7:00 PM
Wednesday, March 21 Little Compline w/Canon of St. Andrew of Crete, 7:00 PM
Thursday, March 22 Clergy Brotherhood Lecture, SS Constantine & Helen, 7 PM
Friday, March 23 Ladies-Sponsored Dinner, 6:30 PM
Final Salutations/Madayeh, 7:30 PM
March 23-25 Antiochian Women’s Retreat @ Antiochian Village
Saturday, March 24 Great Vespers, 5:00 PM
Sunday, April 1 Palm Sunday
Sunday, April 8 Holy Pascha
Saturday, April 14 Tulips and Tea
FROM THE FATHERS – “People give all sorts of reasons to excuse their lack of charity and their hardheartedness. Some say, “Hard times,” but if the times are hard for those who have a sufficiency, how much harder are they for the poor? This pretext alone should lead one to give all the more generously.”
St. Theophan the Recluse
A Parish of the Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America