9th Sunday of Matthew, Matthew 14: 22-34
Our family visited the Grand Canyon a few years ago. It is magnificent and awe-inspiring, but when hiking a trail or standing on an overlook, I recall that you have to pay careful attention because you are often just a few feet away from a very steep drop off. Unfortunately, people have fallen to their deaths in the canyon simply because they didn’t pay attention to what they were doing.
St. Peter made a similar error. As he walked on the water with Jesus Christ, Peter let himself be distracted by the wind and the waves of a stormy sea. Instead of focusing his attention and trust in the Lord Who miraculously enabled him to walk on the water in the first place, Peter let doubt and fear fill his mind. So he began to sink; but when he called out in terror for help, the Lord reached out to Peter and saved him from drowning. Continue reading
The fast begins on 1st August and ends 15th August when Orthodox Christians celebrate the Feast of the Falling Asleep (Koimesis) of the Theotokos.
This great fast honours the Virgin Mary through whom the mystery of the incarnation took place. As our Lord’s Mother, we seek her intercession to her Son for our every need. She listens, comforts, and prays for us. This is evident by the many miracles that are performed by her; the countless number of churches that are built in her honour. During this period of fasting there is a Paraklesis service to her each evening (except for 5th August when there are Vespers for our Lord’s Transfiguration, 14th August, and Saturday evenings). Attending the Paraklesis services gives us the opportunity to honour the Theotokos and seek her aid for ourselves and others.
SUNDAY 22 JULY
† 8th Sunday of Matthew | Matthew 14: 14-22
• 7.30 – 11.00am Orthros and Divine Liturgy
• 10.30 – 11.00am Sunday School Classes
8th Sunday of Matthew, Matthew 14: 14-22
“In the hands of the Master, ordinary means can be used to accomplish extraordinary ends.”
Often, when families and friends get together, favourite old stories will come up. Someone begins, “Do you remember when …” and people either groan or chuckle, depending on the story or the storyteller. The same anecdotes seem to be told again and again. In my own family, these stories abound. One of my favourite family stories is the time my grandfather and his brothers, who were legendary pranksters, tiptoed one of the family horses up the stairs to the second floor parlour on a sleepy Sunday afternoon while their father was taking a nap. It turns out that taking a horse up a flight of stairs is not really the hard part; it is coaxing him back down again that is a challenge! Continue reading
~ Words of the Church Fathers ~
“Do that which is good, and no evil shall touch you. Prayer is good with fasting and alms and righteousness. A little with righteousness is better than much with unrighteousness. It is better to give alms than to lay up gold: For alms doth deliver from death, and shall purge away all sin. Those that exercise alms and righteousness shall be filled with life: But they that sin are enemies to their own life.”
+ St. Raphael the Archangel, Tobit 12:7-10
Not One Dot or Iota will be Changed
The Reading is from Matthew 5:14-19
The Lord said to his disciples, “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hid. Nor do men light a lamp and put it under a bushel, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven. Think not that I have come to abolish the law and the prophets; I have come not to abolish them but to fulfil them. For truly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the law until all is accomplished. Whoever then relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but he who does them and teaches them shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.” Continue reading
~ Words of the Church Fathers ~
When the soul knows the love of God by the Holy Spirit, then he clearly feels that the Lord is our own Father, the closest, dearest Father, the best. And there is not greater happiness that to love God with all the mind and heart, and our neighbour as our self. And when this love is in the soul, then all things bring joy to the soul.
~ St. Silouan the Athonite, Writings, IX.15
Of all the afflictions that burden the human race, there is not one, whether spiritual or bodily, that cannot be healed by the Holy Scriptures.
~ St. John Chrysostom, Conversations on the Book of Genesis, 29.1