Schedule of Services:
-Saturday, February 25th, Great Vespers at 4pm.
-Sunday, February 26th, Forgiveness Sunday: Divine Liturgy at 10am. Hours begin at 9:40am.
-Today is Meatfare Sunday. After today, we take meat out of our diets until the celebration of Pascha.
-This year, on Saturday, March 11th, the weekend of the Sunday of St. Gregory Palamas, we will be hosting a Lenten Retreat. Matushka Mary’s sister, Phoebe, will come to give a presentation on “Joy and the Christian Life.” The schedule for the day is posted downstairs. There is also a sign up sheet for those of us who are willing to bring lenten dishes for a meal that afternoon. Please check the freezer for the sign-up sheet for dishes to bring.
-The weekend after our Retreat, Fr. Deacon Corrado will be presenting at St. Mark’s Orthodox Church in Wrightstown, PA, for another Retreat. Our parish has been invited to St. Mark’s to attend their Retreat and attend Great Vespers. Fr. Raymond Martin Browne, the parish priest of St. Mark’s, and I, have opened our Retreats to our respective parishes. Therefore, instead of holding Vespers here that evening, we have been invited to go to St. Mark’s, as they are invited to our parish. Fr. Deacon Corrado will be speaking on the authenticity of the Shroud of Turin—the burial shroud of Jesus Christ.
-Next Sunday is Forgiveness Sunday. It is important that we are all here in church to ask one another forgiveness as the first step to our Lord’s Pascha! The foundation of heaven is built on the pillars of forgiveness!
-Also posted downstairs are the flyers for the Vespers of the Sunday of Orthodoxy that is being held in South River, NJ at Sts. Peter and Paul Orthodox Church, and the flyer for our Deanery’s Mission Vespers services.
-We will be collecting clothes and food for Syrians to be dropped off at St. Mary’s Orthodox Church in Brooklyn, and then sent to Syria. Thank you, Mila, for being willing to drive to Brooklyn and drop off our offerings. The items need to be dropped off by March 3rd, so please bring whatever you can by next Sunday.
-Parishes are free to take collections for the victims of the February 6 earthquake in Turkey and Syria. At the direction of His Beatitude, Metropolitan TIKHON, financial donations may be sent to International Orthodox Christian Charities (IOCC), either online or by mail at IOCC, marked “Syria / Turkey Earthquake Relief”, 110 West Road, Suite 360, Baltimore, MD 21204.
Departed: The victims of the earthquake in Turkey and Syria.
Living: Archpriest Nicholas, Steven, Nellie, Paul, Melissa, Helen, John, Stephen, Michele, Janet, Teresa, Irina, Alla, Ira, Victor, the child of God, Gideon; the servant of God, Brendan; Metropolitan Onuphry and the faithful of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church; the suffering people and innocent victims of the Ukrainian/Russian war and those being persecuted; the suffering people of Yemen, Syria, and Palestine. And the suffering people of Turkey.
Words for the Day:
Draw nigh to the righteous, and through them you will draw nigh to God. Communicate with those who possess humility, and you will learn morals from them. A man who follows one who loves God becomes rich in the mysteries of God; but he who follows an unrighteous and proud man gets far away from God, and will be hated by his friends.
(St. Isaac the Syrian, Sermon 57,8)
A discerning man, when he eats grapes, takes only the ripe ones and leaves the sour. Thus also the discerning mind carefully marks the virtues which he sees in any person. A mindless man seeks out the vices and failings ... Even if you see someone sin with your own eyes, do not judge; for often even your eyes are deceived.
(St. John of the Ladder, Ladder, 10.16-17)
Next Week’s Readings:
Epistle: Romans 13:11-14:4. Besides this you know the time, that the hour has come for you to wake from sleep. For salvation is nearer to us now than when we first believed. The night is far gone; the day is at hand. So then let us cast off the works of darkness and put on the armor of light. Let us walk properly as in the daytime, not in orgies and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and sensuality, not in quarreling and jealousy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to gratify its desires. As for the one who is weak in faith, welcome him, but not to quarrel over opinions. One person believes he may eat anything, while the weak person eats only vegetables. Let not the one who eats despise the one who abstains, and let not the one who abstains pass judgment on the one who eats, for God has welcomed him. Who are you to pass judgment on the servant of another? It is before his own master that he stands or falls. And he will be upheld, for the Lord is able to make him stand.
Gospel: Matthew 6:14-21. For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. “And when you fast, do not look gloomy like the hypocrites, for they disfigure their faces that their fasting may be seen by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face, that your fasting may not be seen by others but by your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.