Upcoming for week of March 17
Tuesday, Wednesday 9 am-Lenten Matins
Wednesday 5 pm Pre-Sanctified Liturgy followed by lenten pot-luck
Friday 5 pm-Akathist to the Theotokos
Saturday 5 pm -Vespers
March 17, 2019-Sunday of Orthodoxy
Divine Liturgy of St. Basil the Great
Tone 1-Troparion of the Resurrection
When the stone had been sealed by the Jews, while the soldiers were guarding Thy most pure body, Thou didst rise on the third day, O Savior, granting life to the world. The powers of heaven therefore cried to Thee, O Giver of Life: “Glory to Thy Resurrection, O Christ! Glory to Thy ^Kingdom! Glory to Thy dispensation, O Thou who lovest of mankind!”
Tone 8-Troparion of Pentecost
Blessed art Thou, O Christ our God, who hast revealed the fishermen as most wise by sending down upon them the Holy Spirit – through them Thou didst draw the world into Thy net. O Lover of all Mankind, glory to Thee!
Tone 2-Kontakion from the Lenten Triodion
We venerate Thy most pure image, O Good One, and ask forgiveness of our transgressions O Christ God. Of Thine own will Thou wast pleased to ascend the Cross in the flesh; to deliver Thy creatures from bondage to the enemy. Therefore, with thanksgiving we cry aloud to Thee: “Thou hast filled all with joy, O our Savior by coming to save the world.”
Tone 8-Kontakion of the Resurrection
As God, Thou didst rise from the tomb in glory, raising the world with Thyself. Human nature praises Thee as God, for death has vanished. Adam exalts, O Master. Eve rejoices, for she is freed from bondage, and cries to Thee; Thou art the giver of resurrection to all, O Christ.
Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit
Tone 8-Kontakion of Pentecost
When the Most High came down and confused the tongues, He divided all the nations, but when He distributed the tongues of fire, He called all mankind to unity. Therefore, with one voice we glorify the Holy Spirit.
Now and ever and unto ages of ages. Amen.
Steadfast protection of Christians, constant advocate before the Creator, despise not the entreating cries of us sinners; but in your goodness come speedily to help those who call on you in faith: hasten to hear our petition and to intercede for us, O Theotokos, for you always protect those who honor Thee.
The Reading from the Epistle of St. Paul to the Hebrews. (11:24-26, 32-40)
Brethren, by faith Moses, when he was grown up, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, choosing rather to share ill-treatment with the people of God than to enjoy the fleeting pleasures of sin. And what more shall I say? For time would fail me to tell of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, of David and Samuel and the prophets; who through faith conquered kingdoms, enforced justice, received promises, stopped the mouths of lions, quenched raging fire, escaped the edge of the sword, won strength out of weakness, became mighty in war, and put foreign armies to flight.
Women received their dead by resurrection. Some were tortured, refusing to accept release that they might rise again to a better life. Others suffered mocking and scourging, and even chains and imprisonment. They were stoned, they were sawn in two, they were killed with the sword; they went about in skins of sheep and goats, destitute, afflicted, ill-treated—of whom the world was not worthy—wandering over deserts and mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth.
And all these, though well attested by their faith, did not receive what was promised, since God had foreseen something better for us, that apart from us they should not be made perfect.
The Reading from the Holy Gospel according to St. John. (1:43-51)
At that time, Jesus decided to go to Galilee. And He found Philip and said to him, “Follow Me.” Now Philip was from Bethsaida, the city of Andrew and Peter. Philip found Nathanael, and said to him, “We have found Him of Whom Moses in the Law and also the Prophets wrote, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.”
Nathanael said to him, “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” Philip said to him, “Come and see.” Jesus saw Nathanael coming to Him, and said of him, “Behold, an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile!” Nathanael said to Jesus, “How do you know me?” Jesus answered him, “Before Philip called you, when you were under the fig tree, I saw you.”
Nathanael answered Him, “Rabbi, Thou art the Son of God! Thou art the King of Israel!” Jesus answered him, “Because I said to you, I saw you under the fig tree, do you believe? You shall see greater things than these.” And Jesus said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, you will see heaven opened, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of man.”
Orthodoxy Sunday Vespers
This evening, at 5 pm, our holy parish is hosting the surrounding Orthodox churches in celebrating the Triumph of Orthodoxy, The Restoration of the Holy Icons. We will have a Sunday night Vesper Service with the procession with the icons. Please come and celebrate with us.
This year during the season of Lent we will use the lenten responses all through the week. The same ones we have been using for the Pre-sanctified Liturgies on Wednesday are now being sung all week.
On Wednesday at 5 pm we will celebrate one of your favorite services. The Divine Liturgy of the Pre-sanctified Gifts. Weekday Divine Liturgy is forbidden on weekdays in lent, but the Church instead has provided us strength for the fast by using gifts that are sanctified on Sunday to be served as communion on Wednesday. (Also traditionally on Friday, which we don’t do.) This Liturgy is followed by a lenten pot-luck supper and fellowship. Bring a lenten dish to share. This will also be repeated on each Wednesday during Lent.
On Friday we celebrate the Supplications to the Most Holy Theotokos Service, also called The Akathist. This is a joyful sadness service where we ask for aid from God through our main intercessor, the Most Holy Theotokos. This starts at 7 pm. This service is celebrated each Friday during Lent.
On Saturday we have Great Vespers at 5 pm. This wonderful service is served all year and is our preparation for the Sunday worship, as Sunday begins on Saturday at sundown, when we sing one of the most ancient hymns of the Church, O Gladsome Light; as the sun is setting.
Lenten Orthros/Matins: On many mornings during the whole of Lent, at 9 am, we will sing the Morning Prayers of the Church at Matins. Check bulletin for when these are scheduled.
I strongly encourage you to take advantage of these services for your encouragement and repentance. Turning our eyes heavenward we seek to draw closer to God during this special time of year.
The Lenten Services of the Orthodox Church are not to be missed in their beauty, depth and insight.
A Special Lenten Prayer
During the Lenten Season we use a special prayer extensively, but only on weekdays. This prayer of St. Ephraim the Syrian was written in the 3rd Century.
O Lord and Master of my life, give me not the spirit of sloth, despair, Lust of power and idle talk. (prostration)
But give rather the spirit of chastity, humility, patience, love to thy servant. (prostration)
Yea, O Lord and King, grant me to see my own transgressions and not to judge my brother, for blessed art Thou, unto Ages of ages. (prosration)
O God, cleanse me a sinner. (with deep bows) 12 times.
Then repeat the entire prayer with one prostration at the end.
This prayer should be incorporated into your personal prayers, as it will be in all weekday services at church, the home being a mini-church. Memorize it and make it part of your life. Prostrations (or metanias) are part of the Lenten discipline as well. A prostration is when we cross ourselves, go down and touch our forehead to the floor and rise again, not moving our feet.
The body shows externally what is happening internally. As when we discipline the body the soul is enriched.
The atmosphere of the church changes with Lent. More somber, quieter, different colors, longer, etc. These will appear fully next Sunday when the altar cloths and vestments are changed to dark colors. The censer will have no bells. The responses of the people will even reflect the change. We will use the responses from the Pre-sanctified Liturgy for all services during Lent. This is to help us find the “spirit of Lent”, a bright sadness. A joyful repentance. The Divine Liturgy of St. Basil is used for all the Lenten Sunday Divine Liturgy Services, this you will find in the back of the Service Book. The only changes are seen in The Anaphora, the prayers at the altar for the blessing of the gifts.
One thing that is stressed as a part of the Lenten Fast is almsgiving, contributions of support of the poor. To this end we have coin boxes to support foreign missionaries and we also encourage you to bring non-perishable foods to put in the food pantry basket near the church office. No opened or expired food please.
Another good practice is to secretly help out a person or family in need; or to volunteer in an aid organization.
A good Lenten practice is to shift your attention away from social media, the computer, Facebook and the like to spiritual reading. The church calendar has daily Scripture readings, try those each day as a basis.
Also, we have an amazing lending library in the church hall. Take home a good book to read, then bring it back and get another one.
There are books specifically about Lent, try the life of a saint, a biography of a holy person or a topic you are interested in learning more about. Talk to Jeff or Fr. Stephen for some suggestions.
There are also electronic sources available for us forgetful people, sent automatically everyday so there is no excuse.
During Lent maybe you want to do something at the church. Bring a dust rage and go nuts, or find something to clean. Pull weeds, power wash the outside. Ask for some ideas.
Do you have icons at home? A prayer corner? We can help with that too.
Starting tomorrow, until Pascha, we eat nothing that comes from an animal with a backbone, no dairy. Oil and wine is permitted only on weekends. The exceptions are Palm Sunday and Annunciation when fish is allowed.
Lydia Holt and Anna Tsakarissianos
Please remember a parishioner who is mostly homebound, Lydia Holt. She is very fond of our holy parish. Her address is:
3799 Cadbury Cir. Apt. 714; Venice FL 34293
Also remember Anna T., her address is:
8400 Vamo Rd. Apt. 859; Sarasota FL 34231
If you notice a visitor in the Divine Liturgy, be friendly. If they look lost help them out. Remember the priest wants to meet them during coffee hour, so introduce them. Introduce yourself to them and make sure they feel welcome to stay for fellowship.
All our coffee hour slots for sponsors are taken until after Pascha! Thank you! Also, thank you for supporting our Meatfare Dinner, we sold over 70 tickets!! And thank you to Mardee and Marie for doing such a great job!