Monthly Archives: August 2017

The Beheading of the holy glorious Prophet, Forerunner and Baptist John

Commemorated on 29 August

Reading:
“The divine Baptist, the Prophet born of a Prophet, the seal of all the Prophets and beginning of the Apostles, the mediator between the Old and New Covenants, the voice of one crying in the wilderness, the God-sent Messenger of the incarnate Messiah, the forerunner of Christ’s coming into the world (Esaias 40: 3; Mal. 3: 1); who by many miracles was both conceived and born; who was filled with the Holy Spirit while yet in his mother’s womb; who came forth like another Elias the Zealot, whose life in the wilderness and divine zeal for God’s Law he imitated: this divine Prophet, after he had preached the baptism of repentance according to God’s command; had taught men of low rank and high how they must order their lives; had admonished those whom he baptized and had filled them with the fear of God, teaching them that no one is able to escape the wrath to come if he do not works worthy of repentance; had, through such preaching, prepared their hearts to receive the evangelical teachings of the Saviour; and finally, after he had pointed out to the people the very Saviour, and said, “Behold the Lamb of God, Which taketh away the sin of the world” (Luke 3:2-18; John 1: 29-36), after all this, John sealed with his own blood the truth of his words and was made a sacred victim for the divine Law at the hands of a transgressor. Continue reading

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On earthly riches…

∼ Words from the Church Fathers ∼

A sinful soul, full of passions, cannot have peace and rejoice in the Lord, even if it had charge over all earthly riches, even if it ruled over the whole world. If it was suddenly said to such a king, happily feasting and sitting on his throne, “King, now you will die,” his soul would be troubled and he would tremble with fear, and he would see his powerlessness. But how many beggars there are, whose only wealth is love for God, and who, if you said to them, “You will die now,” would answer peacefully, “Let God’s will be done. Glory to the Lord, that He has remembered me and wants to take me to Himself.”
– St. Silouan the Athonite, Writings, IV.3

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WEEKLY PROGRAM | 20 – 27 AUGUST 2017

SUNDAY 20 AUGUST
† 11th Sunday of Matthew | Matthew 18: 23—35
• 7.30 – 11.00am  Orthros and Divine Liturgy
• 10.30 – 11.00am 
Sunday School Classes

SUNDAY SCHOOL CLASSES FOR ALL AGES!
(A free voluntary program organised by the Church)
Lessons take place in the building behind the church and begin at the time of Holy Communion until Church dismissal. We have classes for ages ranging from 5yrs to teenage years. Lessons are taught in a relaxed, friendly environment. Please bring your children along to learn of their rich Orthodox faith and come close to God and His Love.

This week’s readings:

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Forgiving Others as Christ Forgives Us: Homily for the 11th Sunday of Matthew in the Orthodox Church

Matthew 18:23-35

If you are like me, there are times that you realize that you have wanted for yourself something that you were not willing to give others. It is so easy for us all to fall into the self-centeredness of seeing things only from our own point of view, of focusing on our own needs and desires to the point that we treat others quite poorly and become hypocrites. As we can see from today’s gospel text, Jesus Christ addressed this common human failing in a memorable and disturbing parable that applies to us all when we refuse to forgive others. Continue reading

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Panagia tou Harou

Panagia Tou Harou_original icon

 

Panagia of Harou is the name of the unique icon which depicts the Virgin Mary cradling the crucified Christ, rather than the Christ child, hence its name (haros in Greek means “death”). This icon is found in the Church of St. John the Theologian in Leipsi, Greece. The annual commemoration of the icon takes place on August 23 when the island of Leipsi fills with pilgrims from all over the Dodecanese, to witness the procession of the icon around the entire island and see the annual blossoming of the dead bouquet of lilies on the icon.

In 1943, during the Nazi Occupation, a family whose home was adjacent to the church tried faithfully and respectfully to save some of its meagre supply of oil in order to light the Virgin’s vigil light. On the 25th of March 1943, the feast day of the Annunciation, the family’s youngest daughter left six white lilies in front of the Panagia’s icon, together with a prayer for a speedy liberation of the country. The lilies wilted, then in August the flowers started to revive and on the 23rd of August they had sprouted 12 new buds and gave off a beautiful fragrance.

Ever since then, this miracle is repeated every year, except the year of the death of that devout young woman who first brought the flowers to the church. In spring, the devotees put lilies on the icon and the flowers are left there to wither. In an inexplicable way, the withered branches start giving buds and on the day of the celebration, they blossom and become fragrant.

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WEEKLY PROGRAM | 13 – 20 AUGUST 2017

SUNDAY 13 AUGUST
† 10th Sunday of Matthew | Matthew 17: 14-23
• 7.30 – 11.00am  Orthros and Divine Liturgy
• 10.30 – 11.00am 
Sunday School Classes
5.00pm Paraklesis to the Theotokos

SUNDAY SCHOOL CLASSES FOR ALL AGES!
(A free voluntary program organised by the Church)
Lessons take place in the building behind the church and begin at the time of Holy Communion until Church dismissal. We have classes for ages ranging from 5yrs to teenage years. Lessons are taught in a relaxed, friendly environment. Please bring your children along to learn of their rich Orthodox faith and come close to God and His Love.

This week’s readings:

Continue reading

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Sermon on the Dormition of the Most Holy Theotokos

Saint John of Kronstadt, August 15

“Magnify O my soul, the honourable Translation of the Mother of God from earth to heaven.” (Refrain for the 9th Ode of the Canon)

Let us be happy, beloved brothers and sisters that we belong to the Holy Orthodox Church, worthily and rightly glorifying the Most Holy Sovereign Theotokos on this eminent day out of all the days of the year with special solemnity. There exists on earth many societies and entire governments that do not consider the need nor the obligation to call upon and glorify the Queen of heaven and earth, the Mother of Our Divine Lord Jesus Christ, and other saints and angels; to submissively serve Her lovingly, as the true Mother of God. Sadly in Russia nowadays we have heretics (among us) who actively dishonor the Mother of God, the saints, their icons, their relics and their festivals. O, if only they also unanimously with us glorified the worthy Queen of heaven and earth! Continue reading

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