St. Peter Newsletter August 20, 2019

The Tenth Sunday after Pentecost
The Tenth Sunday of Matthew

Return of the relics of the Apostle Bartholomew; Holy Apostle Titus of The Seventy; Archbishops Menas, Epiphanios, Gennadios and John of Constantinople

The Holy Apostle Bartholomew

The Holy Apostle Bartholomew

What is the Return of the Relics of the Apostle Bartholomew from Anastasiopolis to Lipari?

The Transfer of the Relics of the Apostle Bartholomew took place at the end of the sixth century. His apostolic activity and martyr’s end are remembered by the Church on June 11. The Apostle Bartholomew suffered for Christ in Armenian Albanus (now Baku) in the year 71, where his holy relics were. Numerous miracles occurred from the relics of the holy Apostle, and many of the unbelieving were converted to Christ. Under the emperor Anastasius (491-518) the relics of the Apostle Bartholomew were transferred into the newly constructed city of Anastasiopolis (or Dura) and remained there until the end of the sixth century.

When the city of Anastasiopolis was captured by the Persian emperor Chozroes, Christians took up the chest with the relics of the Apostle Bartholomew and fled with it to the shores of the Black Sea. Having overtaken them, pagan priests threw the chest with the relics of the Apostle Bartholomew into the sea. Four other chests containing the relics of the holy Martyrs Papian, Lucian, Gregory and Acacius were also thrown into the sea.

By the power of God the chests did not sink into the depths of the sea, but miraculously floated upon the waves and reached Italy. The chest with the relics of the Apostle Bartholomew came to land at the island of Lipari, and the remaining chests continued their journey and came to land at various places in Italy. The chest with the relics of the Martyr Papian halted at Sicily, the Martyr Lucian at Messina, the Martyr Gregory at Calabria, and the Martyr Acacius at Askalon.

The arrival of the relics of the holy Apostle Bartholomew was revealed to Bishop Agathon of the island of Lipari, who went with clergy to the shores of the sea, took the chest from the waters and solemnly transferred it to church.

Myrrh flowed from the relics of the Apostle Bartholomew, healing people of various illnesses. The holy relics remained in the church of the island of Lipari until the middle of the ninth century when the island was captured by pagans. Christian merchants took up the holy relics of the Apostle Bartholomew and transferred them to the city of Beneventum, near Naples, where they were received with great veneration and placed in the main church of the city.

Source: Orthodox Church of America website.

 

Two Upcoming Liturgies

Tuesday, August 27 – St. Phanourios at 9:30am

St. Phanourios

The holy, glorious and right-victorious Great-martyr Phanourios (also Fanurius, Fanourios, Phanurius, Phanourius) the Newly Appeared of Rhodes, the Miracle-Worker, is commemorated by the Church on August 27. There is no literature available in the church prior to discovering his little church in Rhodes so not much is known about St. Phanourios’s life other than the images of his martyrdom on his icon.

In the Church we have the tradition of patron saints. St. Phanourios has become famous for assisting the faithful in revealing lost or hidden spiritual matters of the heart, objects, directing or revealing actions that should be taken, restoring health and similar situations. He is then honored by the faithful through a symbolic cake, called the “Phanouropita” which can be brought to the church, at any time, for a blessing.

We will celebrate the Liturgy for St. Phanourios on Tuesday, August 27, 2019 at 9:30am.

Read more about St. Phanourios on the OrthodoxWiki website.

Thursday, August 29 – Beheading of St. John the Baptist at 9:30am

The Beheading of St. John the Forerunner

The Beheading of St. John the Forerunner

We will celebrate the Liturgy of the Beheading of St. John the Baptist on Thursday, August 29, 2018 starting at 9:30am. Why celebrate this important day? Because when we celebrate the liturgies of important Saints, their presence and power becomes more evident in our Church.

Men: Join AMEN

Antiochian Diocese of Miami and the South East

AMEN is growing in the Miami Diocese, very fast actually, and there is a lot of good energy behind it. Fr. Hans has been appointed the Spiritual Advisor to the group by Bp. Nicholas. Steve Breitenbach is our local president.

What will AMEN do? It will bring together the men of the parish for friendship, fellowship, and work.

St. Peter’s Men:

A Thank You From Mihail Strezev

Mihail Strezev

Dear Parishioners of St. Peter’s,

I would like to express my deep gratitude to St. Peter’s Church, to its community, and to Fr. Hans for being with me all the time of my living here, for the spiritual and material support that I needed, to enable me to go and study at the Eastman School of Music.

I become of a beautiful family that helped me go through a very difficult time in my life. Thank you all for your prayers and your trust in my talent!

I am going far away but I will always be part of our family and will be coming back to see you whenever it is possible.

With much love,

Mihail

A Note From Fr. Hans — Be Missionaries

The Good Samaritan

Mihail wrote a beautiful note above. What many do not realize is that he found St. Peter’s when running into Jeremiah and Irina at Starbucks. Jeremiah and Irina met him, and after conversation invited Mihail to St. Peter’s. Mihail came and St. Peter’s became a family to him. He was going through a very difficult time and God brought him here to help him.

What would have happened if Jeremiah and Irina were not missionary minded, if they would have not perceived Mihail’s need and neglected to mention how God can help him and how he needed to come to the Church? Most likely Mihail would not have found the Church and his difficulties would have continued.

It’s an audacious thing to say but in a way our Lord relies on us. Often we are the messengers, the point of contact between our Lord and people searching for Him. If we don’t do our job, what needs to get done does not get done.

Jeremiah and Irina went to Starbucks not knowing that Mihail would enter their lives, and through them Mihail would enter the Church. Mihail did not know that the Church would help him sort things out, encourage him, and make his path more clear. That’s why the Lord him to Jeremiah and Irina. That’s how it works.

Be missionaries. Be open to people entering your life who are looking for God, which is to say they are also looking for clarity, stability, understanding, real friendship, meaning — all the necessary constituents that give our lives the life we yearn for and that have their source in God.

If we are open in the way Jeremiah and Irena were, then the Lord will bring people to us like He brought Mihail to them. That is how the vision of St. Peter’s that it becomes a home for anyone seeking God (a vision that comes from our Lord Himself) will be fulfilled.

Pledge Report – July 2019

In order to meet our operating Budget goal for 2019 we need to take in $16,777.00 each month.

In June we took in $9741.00 in total donations. Our monthly goal is $16777.00 leaving us $7036.00 short for June.

Please pledge in order to meet our goal. Pledge forms are available on the table in the narthex.

 

Bible Studies

Bible Study

Bible Studies have been cancelled for the summer. We will resume in September.

 

Calendar At A Glance

  • Tue Aug 27 — St. Phanourios Divine Liturgy 9:30am
  • Thu Aug 29 — Beheading of St. John the Baptist Divine Liturgy 9:30am
  • Fri Aug 30 — Parish Council Meeting 2:30pm

SEPTEMBER

  • Thu Sep 5 — Joachim and Anna Divine Liturgy 9:30am
  • Thu-Sat Sep 5-7 — Fr. Hans Out of Town (Diocese Conference)
  • Mon Sep 23 — Conception of St. John Baptist Divine Liturgy 9:30am
  • Thu Sep 26 — Apostle John Divine Liturgy 9:30am
 

Wisdom From The Elders

Our strength, our soul, is invisible; the soul of animals is also invisible; in plants also, their strength, their life, is invisible; the whole material world exists and is moved by an invisible power Righteous John, Wonderworker of Kronstadt

Do not merely not care for pleasures and fine things, but do not even care for your own sinful flesh; for by the slightest attachment to all these things you anger God. Righteous John, Wonderworker of Kronstadt

Let us love that fasting of the soul which, by the cooperation of the Spirit, doth wither the grievous passions and doth strengthen us to do godly deeds, and doth uplift our mind towards Heaven, and doth obtain our sins’ forgiveness, grant unto us by the compassionate God. Triodion, Monday Vespers of the Third Week

Wherefore on no account suffer any evil habit to master thee; but, while it is yet young, pluck the evil root out of thine heart, lest it fasten on and strike root so deep that time and labor be required to uproot it. St John Damascene

Sometimes, however, the evil enemy increases his burden tenfold, and then they become terribly despondent and fainthearted, they murmur and blaspheme God’s name. The usual means that men of our time take to drive away their anguish are—entertainments, cards, dancing, and theatres. But such means afterwards increase still more the anguish and weariness of their hearts. If, happily, they turn to God, then the burden is removed from their heart. Righteous John, Wonderworker of Kronstadt

The life of man on this planet is an enormous drama. Here, the temporal and the eternal worlds continually clash, the mortal and the immortal, the good and the evil, the things of the Devil and the things of the Lord. Venerable Justin (Popovic) of Chelije in Serbia

 

Remember in Your Prayers

Anastasios (B. Hord)
Alan L (B Duskcas)
Charles (Oberg)
Christine (Kouzes)
Nina (Kovalev)
Hugh (Jacquie)
Violet (Jacquie Mom)
Tammie (Jacquie friend)
Phillip
Connie
Baby Luke
George
Priest Kyprianos
Savannah (Jonson)
Bud
Silvana
Nicole
Evan
Megan
Bill R.
Pat R.
Aglaia
George
Hieromonk Serapion
Priest Kyprianos
Athanasia
Alexandra
Constantina
Maryanne (E)
Ron (E)
Tim
Robert (J)
Mary (J)
Patricia
Gregory
Andreas
Sofia Tešanovic
Paul
Dennis H. and Family
Victor Evan
Ann
James
Vasiliki
Efstratia
Alexandra
Nikos
Georgia
Ioannis
Costandino
Jeffrey
Vaso
Dave
Dimitri – Presbyter
Vassiliki
Octavio
Tom
Carl
Rena
Nikolay (5 year old boy in Bulgaria whose parents asked us to pray)
David
Rosie
Kathryn
Jeremy
Constantine
Robert
Jane
Theodora
David
Gina
Micheal
Haralambos
Lillian
Presbytera Rosy
Valentina
Eva W.
Barbara
Angela
Carol Ann
Matthew
Chrysostom
Tim
Pat
Christina
Maria Louise
Maximos
Marian
Photini
Nicholas
Sarah
Constantine Houpis
Anna Marie Smith Baker
Katerina
Mary Kassis
Baby Maximus
Christine
Maria
Annette Star
Claire Livaditis
Eva Chandilles
Baby Dani
Scott Nedoff
James Hord
Tom

How should we pray for the sick? Remember them daily. Say their names (first names are sufficient) and ask God to bestow mercy and grace on them.

Add or remove names and print this list for easy reference during your prayer time on the St. Peter website.

 

Sunday Readings

Christ Giving Blessing

Epistle

For the Tenth Sunday after Pentecost

Let Thy mercy, O Lord, be upon us.
Rejoice in the Lord, O ye righteous.

The Reading from the First Epistle of St. Paul to the Corinthians. (4:9-16)

Brethren, God has exhibited us Apostles as last of all, like men sentenced to death; because we have become a spectacle to the world, to angels and to men. We are fools for Christ’s sake, but you are wise in Christ. Weare weak, but you are strong. You are held in honor, but we in disrepute. To the present hour we hunger and thirst, we are ill clad and buffeted and homeless; and we labor, working with our own hands. When reviled, we bless; when persecuted, we endure; when slandered, we try to conciliate; we have become, and are now, as the refuse of the world, the off scouring of all things.

I do not write this to make you ashamed, but to admonish you as my beloved children. For though you have countless guides in Christ,you do not have many fathers. For I became your father in Christ Jesus through the Gospel. I urge you, then, be imitators of me.

Gospel

For the Tenth Sunday of Matthew

The Reading from the Holy Gospel according to St. Matthew. (17:14-23)

At that time, a man came up to Jesus and kneeling before Him said, “Lord, have mercy on my son, for he is an epileptic and he suffers terribly; for often he falls into the fire, and often into the water. And I brought him to Thy disciples,and they could not heal him.” And Jesus answered, “O faithless and perverse generation,how long am I to be with you? How long am I to bear with you? Bring him here to me.” And Jesus rebuked him, and the demon came out of him, and the boy was cured instantly.

Then the disciples came to Jesus privately and said, “Why could we not cast it out?” Jesus said to them, “Because you have no faith. For truly, I say to you, if you have faith as a grain of mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible to you. This kind never comes out except by prayer and fasting.”

As they were traveling together through Galilee, Jesus said to them, “The Son of man is to be delivered into the hands of men, and they will kill Him, and He will rise on the third day.”?The Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom continues as usual.

St. Peter Orthodox Church

St. Peter Newsletter August 13, 2019

The Ninth Sunday after Pentecost
Afterfeast of the Dormition

Martyrs Floros and Lauros of Illyria
Venerable Sophronios of St. Anne Skete on Athos

Dormition of the Theotokos Liturgy on Wednesday, August 14, at 6:30pm

What is the Dormition of the Theotokos?

The Holy Scriptures tell us that when our Lord was dying on the Cross, He saw His mother and His disciple John and said to the Virgin Mary, “Woman, behold your son!” and to John, “Behold your mother!” (John 19:25-27). From that hour, the Apostle took care of the Theotokos in his own home.

Along with the biblical reference in Acts 1:14 that confirms that the Virgin Mary was with the Holy Apostles on the day of Pentecost, the tradition of the Church holds that she remained in the home of the Apostle John in Jerusalem, continuing a ministry in word and deed.

At the time of her death, the disciples of our Lord who were preaching throughout the world returned to Jerusalem to see the Theotokos. Except for the Apostle Thomas, all of them including the Apostle Paul were gathered together at her bedside. At the moment of her death, Jesus Christ himself descended and carried her soul into heaven.

Following her repose, the body of the Theotokos was taken in procession and laid in a tomb near the Garden of Gethsemane. When the Apostle Thomas arrived three days after her repose and desired to see her body, the tomb was found to be empty. The bodily assumption of the Theotokos was confirmed by the message of an angel and by her appearance to the Apostles.

Source: Greek Orthodox Archdiocese website.

 

Dormtion Fast and Akathist Hymns Continue Through August 15

August 1 starts the Dormition period in our Orthodox Church. We fast (abstain from meat and dairy as much as possible) from August 1 to August 15. At St. Peter’s the fast ends after the Dormition Liturgy on the evening of August 14.

Most weekdays we will sing an Akathist to the Theotokos starting at 6:00pm. These are very powerful prayers and you will notice a focusing in your life if you participate in them.

On the evening of August 14, 2018 we will celebrate the Dormition of the Theotokos with a Divine Liturgy at 6:30pm.

Thank You From Dn. Daniel and Tabita Valentine

Last Sunday was Dn. Daniel’s last Sunday of service at St. Peter’s, although he will be joining us whenever he is on break from his studies at St. Tikhon’s Seminary. As many of you know, Dn. Daniel is completing the last nine months of his three year preparation for ordination to the priesthood.

We held a small goodbye gathering after Liturgy and he passed along this note of thanks to St. Peter parishioners.

4 August 2019 +
The “Seven Sleepers” of Ephesus

Dear Fr. Hans, Parish Council, and Pious Faithful of St. Peter’s,

Father, bless. Christ is in Our Midst! He is And Always Shall Be!

It is with immense joy and gratitude that we received your heartfelt gifts at the reception this morning – to aid us in our tuition expenses, as well as in our necessitated relocation for our final nine months at St. Tikhon’s Monastery and Seminary. It’s enormously uplifting, and of a great boost to our morale, knowing that we are held in your thoughts, hearts, and prayers. Yet, not simply by this. From the moment we set foot into the sacred walls of St. Peter’s, each and every one of you has continued to encourage us. You have graced us with your faith, integrity, hospitality, and love.You have welcomed us into your lives and into your hearts: truly, St. Peter’s is our home. You are all beautiful souls, by whom the Light of Christ continues to burn. I am with immense faith, that through your compassion, devotion, love, and generosity, innumerable souls will come to know Our Savior and His Salvation – through your examples. You are an inspiration.

From the bottom of my heart, I am thankful for each and every one of you; likewise, for your kind and merciful spirits. As you know, my wife, by the strengthening of Our Lord, places in nearly sixty to eighty hours a week as a Wound Nurse & Consultant, in order to maintain us on one income.Your gifts are a true blessing! It genuinely is a struggle through Seminary, spiritually and in other forms. Yet, as Christ tells us, “… if any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me” [Lk. 9:23]. By your prayers, and His merciful interventions, I have great faith we will be able to accomplish such a journey. We peer forward to great labors to come.

Your generosity is truly of selflessness, kindness, and love – the fulfillment of Our Lord’s Commandment to “love thy neighbor as thyself.” I have no doubt in my soul that the good Lord smiles upon you all. Please, know that you, and all your kin will forever be remembered in my daily prayers and commemorations. Moreover, please do not hesitate to reach out, personally, could we be of aid to you in any of your blessed labor.

Please, continue to hold us in your God-pleasing prayers. Thank you, so very much; and, may the Lord’s blessing forever fall upon you, your loved ones, and all the endeavors of your hands. We remain with love,

Your unworthy servants in Christ,

Reverend Deacon Daniel & Tabita Valentine

Two Upcoming Liturgies

Tuesday, August 27 – St. Phanourios at 9:30am

St. Phanourios

The holy, glorious and right-victorious Great-martyr Phanourios (also Fanurius, Fanourios, Phanurius, Phanourius) the Newly Appeared of Rhodes, the Miracle-Worker, is commemorated by the Church on August 27. There is no literature available in the church prior to discovering his little church in Rhodes so not much is known about St. Phanourios’s life other than the images of his martyrdom on his icon.

In the Church we have the tradition of patron saints. St. Phanourios has become famous for assisting the faithful in revealing lost or hidden spiritual matters of the heart, objects, directing or revealing actions that should be taken, restoring health and similar situations. He is then honoured by the faithful through a symbolic cake, called the “Phanouropita” which can be brought to the church, at any time, for a blessing.

We will celebrate the Liturgy for St. Phanourios on Tuesday, August 27, 2019 at 9:30am.

Read more about St. Phanourios on the OrthodoxWiki website.

Thursday, August 29 – Beheading of St. John the Baptist at 9:30am

The Beheading of St. John the Forerunner

The Beheading of St. John the Forerunner

We will celebrate the Liturgy of the Beheading of St. John the Baptist on Thursday, August 29, 2018 starting at 9:30am. Why celebrate this important day? Because when we celebrate the liturgies of important Saints, their presence and power becomes more evident in our Church.

Men: Join AMEN

AMEN is growing in the Miami Diocese, very fast actually, and there is a lot of good energy behind it. Fr. Hans has been appointed the Spiritual Advisor to the group by Bp. Nicholas. Steve Breitenbach is our local president.

What will AMEN do? It will bring together the men of the parish for friendship, fellowship, and work.

St. Peter’s Men:

Fr. Hans Interviewed by AMEN President Michael Bacleg

Click the image to view the interview.

Tuition for Young Organist Mihail Strezev

Mihail Strezev

Many of you know Mihail (we call him Michael). You see him coming into church late on Sundays. He comes late because he makes his living playing the organ for other churches on Sundays. On weekday liturgies you see him come in on time.

Mihail has a very interesting story that you can read on his God Fund Me page. He won the Green Card Lottery in his home country of Moldavia, came to Naples, was invited to play a new organ at a concert and it turned out one of the American Grand Master organ players heard his playing and invited him to attend the Eastman School of Music to become his student.

Mihail found St. Peter’s through Jeremiah and Irina. They were having coffee one day and bumped into Mihail. He was struggling a bit (a stranger in a strange land at the time) and invited him to St. Peter’s. He came and has been a member of our congregation ever since. He comes from an Orthodox family and his devout mother probably thanks the Lord every day he found St. Peter’s.

Mihail is raising money for his tuition. Tuition each year for his two year program costs $39,000. He received a $22,000 scholarship. He also needs to raise another $15,000 for living expenses for the year although he is going to try and make it on $10,000. This leaves $27,000 yet to be raised. If he does well the first year, his second year will be paid. This shows that Eastman definitely sees he has talent.

It’s remarkable thing for us to witness as well. It takes a lot of courage and fortitude to come into a strange country and move forward to establish your talents and gifts. It shows America is still a place of opportunity for those who have the resolve and discipline to make something of themselves. Mihail is one of those people.

We need to pray that somehow Mihail’s goal of raising the money will be reached somehow. Prayer works, but we have to do our part as well, just as Mihail is doing his. If you can help please do. If you know of others resources please let Mihail know about that too. You can help him on his Go Fund Me page.

Click the image below to hear him play.

Pledge Report – July 2019

In order to meet our operating Budget goal for 2019 we need to take in $16,777.00 each month.

In June we took in $9741.00 in total donations. Our monthly goal is $16777.00 leaving us $7036.00 short for June.

Please pledge in order to meet our goal. Pledge forms are available on the table in the narthex.

 

Bible Studies

Bible Studies have been cancelled for the summer. We will resume in September.

 

Calendar At A Glance

AUGUST

  • Tue Aug 13 — Paraklesis Service 6pm
  • Wed Aug 14 — Dormition Liturgy 6:30pm
  • Tue Aug 27 — St. Phanourios Divine Liturgy 9:30am
  • Thu Aug 29 — Beheading of St. John the Baptist Divine Liturgy 9:30am
 

Wisdom From The Elders

In the event of a violent attack of the enemy, when a weakening of the will and darkening of the mind is felt, vocal prayer is indispensable. St. Ignatius (Brianchaninov), Bishop of the Caucasus and the Black Sea

Be most careful not to break the least of God’s commandments; such a violation would destroy your likeness to God, and would bring you near to the likeness of the Devil. The more you transgress God’s commandments, the more you will grow like unto the Devil. Righteous John, Wonderworker of Kronstadt

Sin is foolish and destructive. For instance, a drunkard, from the excessive use of spirituous liquors, becomes ill, and indulges in various dissipations and shameful acts, which he himself is ashamed to think of and remember afterwards. And yet he continues to give himself up to drink. Righteous John, Wonderworker of Kronstadt

Through God’s great wisdom, sins and demons can contribute to man’s humility, and through that—to his salvation. This is why the Lord commanded not to pluck the tares from the wheat (Matt. 13:25); without the tares it would have been easy for pride to spring up, and God opposes pride. Pride and high-mindedness only lead to per­dition. Abbot Nikon Vorobiev

Uproot from your heart, by every means, both bodily and spiritual pride, which resists the Holy Ghost; it lies imperceptibly hidden in your heart, and clearly shows itself in your intercourse with your fellow-men, or during prayer. Righteous John, Wonderworker of Kronstadt

With patience, prayer, humility and thankfulness to the Lord, conquer your present state. The Lord is near. He is looking at your heart. Abbot Nikon Vorobiev

 

Remember in Your Prayers

Anastasios (B. Hord)
John J. (B Duskcas)
Alan L (B Duskcas)
Charles (Oberg)
Christine (Kouzes)
Nina (Kovalev)
Hugh (Jacquie)
Violet (Jacquie Mom)
Tammie (Jacquie friend)
Phillip
Connie
Baby Luke
George
Priest Kyprianos
Savannah (Jonson)
Bud
Silvana
Nicole
Evan
Megan
Bill R.
Pat R.
Aglaia
George
Hieromonk Serapion
Priest Kyprianos
Athanasia
Alexandra
Constantina
Maryanne (E)
Ron (E)
Tim
Robert (J)
Mary (J)
Patricia
Gregory
Andreas
Sofia Tešanovic
Paul
Dennis H. and Family
Victor Evan
Ann
James
Vasiliki
Efstratia
Alexandra
Nikos
Georgia
Ioannis
Costandino
Jeffrey
Vaso
Dave
Dimitri – Presbyter
Vassiliki
Octavio
Tom
Carl
Rena
Nikolay (5 year old boy in Bulgaria whose parents asked us to pray)
David
Rosie
Kathryn
Jeremy
Constantine
Robert
Jane
Theodora
David
Gina
Micheal
Haralambos
Lillian
Presbytera Rosy
Valentina
Eva W.
Barbara
Angela
Carol Ann
Matthew
Chrysostom
Tim
Pat
Christina
Maria Louise
Maximos
Marian
Photini
Nicholas
Sarah
Constantine Houpis
Anna Marie Smith Baker
Katerina
Mary Kassis
Baby Maximus
Christine
Maria
Annette Star
Claire Livaditis
Eva Chandilles
Baby Dani
Scott Nedoff
James Hord
Tom

How should we pray for the sick? Remember them daily. Say their names (first names are sufficient) and ask God to bestow mercy and grace on them.

Add or remove names and print this list for easy reference during your prayer time on the St. Peter website.

 

Sunday Readings

Christ Giving Blessing

Epistle

For the Ninth Sunday after Pentecost

Make vows to the Lord thy God and perform them.
In Judah God is known; His Name is great in Israel.

The Reading from the First Epistle of St. Paul to the Corinthians. (3:9-17)

Brethren, we are God’s fellow workers; you are God’s field, God’s building. According to the grace of God given to me, like a skilled master builder I laid a foundation, and another man is building upon it. Let each man take care how he builds upon it. For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Now if any one builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay or straw, each man’s work will become manifest; for the Day will disclose it, because it will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test what sort of work each one has done. If the work which any man has built on the foundation survives, he will receive a reward. If any man’s work is burned up, he will suffer loss, though he himself will be saved, but only as through fire. Do you not know that you are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in you? If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy him; for God’s temple is holy, and you are that temple.

Gospel

For the Ninth Sunday after Pentecost

The Reading from the Holy Gospel according to St. Matthew. (14:22-34)

At that time, Jesus made the Disciples get into the boat and go before Him to the other side,while He dismissed the crowds. And after He had dismissed the crowds, He went up on themountain by Himself to pray. When evening came, He was there alone, but the Disciples’ boat bythis time was many furlongs distant from the land, beaten by the waves; for the wind was against them. And in the fourth watch of the night He came to them, walking on the sea. But when the Disciples saw Jesus walking on the sea, they were terrified, saying, “It is a ghost!” And they cried out for fear. But immediately He spoke to them, saying, “Take heart, it is I; have no fear.” And Peter answered Him, “Lord, if it is Thee, bid me come to Thee on the water.” He said, “Come.”So Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water and came to Jesus; but when he saw the wind,he was afraid, and beginning to sink he cried out, “Lord, save me!” Jesus immediately reached out His hand and caught him, saying to him, “O man of little faith, why did you doubt?” And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased. And those in the boat worshiped Him, saying, “Truly, Thou art the Son of God.” And when they had crossed over, they came to land at Gennesaret.

St. Peter Orthodox Church

Paraklesis Service Schedule (Clearing up some confusion)

Paraklesis Schedule For The Dormition Period

The Dormition of the Theotokos

The Dormition (Falling Asleep) of the Theotokos

There is some confusion about when Paraklesis Services are being held.

The schedule is:

  • Wed Aug 7 — Paraklesis Service 6pm
  • Fri Aug 9 — Paraklesis Service 6pm
  • Mon Aug 12 — Paraklesis Service 6pm
  • Tue Aug 13 — Paraklesis Service 6pm
  • Wed Aug 14 — Dormition Liturgy 6:30pm

To put it another way, this week Paraklesis Service on Wednesday and Friday.

Next week Paraklesis Service on Monday and Tuesday.

Liturgy for the Dormition on Wednesday next week at 6:30pm (Eve of Dormition).

St. Peter Newsletter August 6, 2019

The Eighth Sunday after Pentecost
Afterfeast of the Transfiguration

Martyr and Archdeacon Euplos of Catania in Sicily;
Niphon, Patriarch of Constantinople; New-Martyrs Anastasios and Demetrios of Lesbos

Dormition of the Theotokos Liturgy on Wednesday, August 14, at 6:30pm

Dormition of the Theotokos

What is the Dormition of the Theotokos?

The Holy Scriptures tell us that when our Lord was dying on the Cross, He saw His mother and His disciple John and said to the Virgin Mary, “Woman, behold your son!” and to John, “Behold your mother!” (John 19:25-27). From that hour, the Apostle took care of the Theotokos in his own home.

Along with the biblical reference in Acts 1:14 that confirms that the Virgin Mary was with the Holy Apostles on the day of Pentecost, the tradition of the Church holds that she remained in the home of the Apostle John in Jerusalem, continuing a ministry in word and deed.

At the time of her death, the disciples of our Lord who were preaching throughout the world returned to Jerusalem to see the Theotokos. Except for the Apostle Thomas, all of them including the Apostle Paul were gathered together at her bedside. At the moment of her death, Jesus Christ himself descended and carried her soul into heaven.

Following her repose, the body of the Theotokos was taken in procession and laid in a tomb near the Garden of Gethsemane. When the Apostle Thomas arrived three days after her repose and desired to see her body, the tomb was found to be empty. The bodily assumption of the Theotokos was confirmed by the message of an angel and by her appearance to the Apostles.

Source: Greek Orthodox Archdiocese website.

 

Dormtion Fast and Akathist Hymns Continue Through August 15

August 1 starts the Dormition period in our Orthodox Church. We fast (abstain from meat and dairy as much as possible) from August 1 to August 15. At St. Peter’s the fast ends after the Dormition Liturgy on the evening of August 14.

Most weekdays we will sing an Akathist to the Theotokos starting at 6:00pm. These are very powerful prayers and you will notice a focusing in your life if you participate in them.

On the evening of August 14, 2018 we will celebrate the Dormition of the Theotokos with a Divine Liturgy at 6:30pm.

Thank You From Dn. Daniel and Tabita Valentine

Last Sunday was Dn. Daniel’s last Sunday of service at St. Peter’s, although he will be joining us whenever he is on break from his studies at St. Tikhon’s Seminary. As many of you know, Dn. Daniel is completing the last nine months of his three year preparation for ordination to the priesthood.

We held a small goodbye gathering after Liturgy and he passed along this note of thanks to St. Peter parishioners.

St. Peter Orthodox Church

4 August 2019 +
The “Seven Sleepers” of Ephesus

Dear Fr. Hans, Parish Council, and Pious Faithful of St. Peter’s,

Father, bless. Christ is in Our Midst! He is And Always Shall Be!

It is with immense joy and gratitude that we received your heartfelt gifts at the reception thismorning – to aid us in our tuition expenses, as well as in our necessitated relocation for our finalnine months at St. Tikhon’s Monastery and Seminary. It’s enormously uplifting, and of a greatboost to our morale, knowing that we are held in your thoughts, hearts, and prayers. Yet, not simplyby this. From the moment we set foot into the sacred walls of St. Peter’s, each and every one of youhas continued to encourage us. You have graced us with your faith, integrity, hospitality, and love.You have welcomed us into your lives and into your hearts: truly, St. Peter’s is our home. You areall beautiful souls, by whom the Light of Christ continues to burn. I am with immense faith, thatthrough your compassion, devotion, love, and generosity, innumerable souls will come to know OurSaviour and His Salvation – through your examples. You are an inspiration.

From the bottom of my heart, I am thankful for each and every one of you; likewise, for your kindand merciful spirits. As you know, my wife, by the strengthening of Our Lord, places in nearly sixtyto eighty hours a week as a Wound Nurse & Consultant, in order to maintain us on one income.Your gifts are a true blessing! It genuinely is a struggle through Seminary, spiritually and in otherforms. Yet, as Christ tells us, “… if any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take uphis cross daily, and follow me” [Lk. 9:23]. By your prayers, and His merciful interventions, I havegreat faith we will be able to accomplish such a journey. We peer forward to great labors to come.

Your generosity is truly of selflessness, kindness, and love – the fulfillment of Our Lord’sCommandment to “love thy neighbour as thyself.” I have no doubt in my soul that the good Lordsmiles upon you all. Please, know that you, and all your kin will forever be remembered in my dailyprayers and commemorations. Moreover, please do not hesitate to reach out, personally, could webe of aid to you in any of your blessed labor.

Please, continue to hold us in your God-pleasing prayers. Thank you, so very much; and, may theLord’s blessing forever fall upon you, your loved ones, and all the endeavors of your hands. Weremain with love,

Your unworthy servants in Christ,

Reverend Deacon Daniel & Tabita Valentine

St. Peter Orthodox Church

Pilgrimage to Panagia Vlaheron Monastery in Ocala FL. on Saturday August 10, 2019

Join us for a Dormition Pilgrimage to the Panagia Vlaheron Monastery on Saturday, August 10.

The bus leaves St. Peter’s at 8:00am and returns at 9:00pm. The cost is $30 to pay for transportation.

Please sign up on Sunday in the Social Hall following the Divine Liturgy.

Visiting the monastery always entails a special blessing, although sometimes the blessing is not evident until two or three days later. It also introduces us to monastic life, and shows us how the monastic dimension of Orthodoxy strengthens the entire Church.

Steve Breitenbach New President of AMEN

Steve Breitenbach

Thank you to Steve Breitenbach who has taken leadership of St. Peter’s recently formed Antiochian Men (AMEN) group.

AMEN is growing in the Miami Diocese, very fast actually, and there is a lot of good energy behind it. Fr. Hans has been appointed the Spiritual Advisor to the group by Bp. Nicholas.

What will AMEN do? It will bring together the men of the parish for friendship, fellowship, and work.

St. Peter’s Men:

Fr. Hans Interviewed by AMEN President Michael Bacleg

Click the image to view the interview.

Tuition for Young Organist Mihail Strezev

Mihail Strezev

Many of you know Mihail (we call him Michael). You see him coming into church late on Sundays. He comes late because he makes his living playing the organ for other churches on Sundays. On weekday liturgies you see him come in on time.

Mihail has a very interesting story that you can read on his God Fund Me page. He won the Green Card Lottery in his home country of Moldavia, came to Naples, was invited to play a new organ at a concert and it turned out one of the American Grand Master organ players heard his playing and invited him to attend the Eastman School of Music to become his student.

Mihail found St. Peter’s through Jeremiah and Irina. They were having coffee one day and bumped into Mihail. He was struggling a bit (a stranger in a strange land at the time) and invited him to St. Peter’s. He came and has been a member of our congregation ever since. He comes from an Orthodox family and his devout mother probably thanks the Lord every day he found St. Peter’s.

Mihail is raising money for his tuition. Tuition each year for his two year program costs $39,000. He received a $22,000 scholarship. He also needs to raise another $15,000 for living expenses for the year although he is going to try and make it on $10,000. This leaves $27,000 yet to be raised. If he does well the first year, his second year will be paid. This shows that Eastman definitely sees he has talent.

It’s remarkable thing for us to witness as well. It takes a lot of courage and fortitude to come into a strange country and move forward to establish your talents and gifts. It shows America is still a place of opportunity for those who have the resolve and discipline to make something of themselves. Mihail is one of those people.

We need to pray that somehow Mihail’s goal of raising the money will be reached somehow. Prayer works, but we have to do our part as well, just as Mihail is doing his. If you can help please do. If you know of others resources please let Mihail know about that too. You can help him on his Go Fund Me page.

Click the image below to hear him play.

Pledge Report – July 2019

In order to meet our operating Budget goal for 2019 we need to take in $16,777.00 each month.

In June we took in $9741.00 in total donations. Our monthly goal is $16777.00 leaving us $7036.00 short for June.

Please pledge in order to meet our goal. Pledge forms are available on the table in the narthex.

 

Bible Studies

Bible Study

Bible Studies have been cancelled for the summer. We will resume in September.

 

Calendar At A Glance

AUGUST

  • Wed Aug 7 — Paraklesis Service 6pm
  • Fri Aug 9 — Paraklesis Service 6pm
  • Mon Aug 12 — Paraklesis Service 6pm
  • Tue Aug 13 — Paraklesis Service 6pm
  • Wed Aug 14 — Dormition Liturgy 6:30pm
 

Wisdom From The Elders

God knows when to give us what we ask for, so we won’t be harmed spiritually. Sometimes we ask God for something, but we have no patience and are troubled. Saint Paisios of Mount Athos

He has shown you, O mortal what is good; and what does the LORD require of you? but to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God. Micah

Always remember that you were born into this world so that you may do good to all insofar as possible on every occasion. St. Theophan the Recluse

The way to the kingdom of God is a moral rebirth of man’s whole spiritual nature, a development in him of a Christian outlook, and a formation of his will in the spirit of New Testament love and truth. Protopriest Grigori Dyachenko

And so you must not become despondent in your illness and weakness, but on the contrary, rejoice in spirit, being comforted with the thought that the Lord has come closer to you now, and later will adopt you as His own children, if you will remain faithful to Him to the end and bear without grumbling all the sorrows that He finds necessary to send you. He that endureth to the end shall be saved (Matt. 10:22). Abbot Nikon Vorobiev

It is God, Who is merciful and grants everyone what he needs, Who is building him up when He gives him more than he needs; in doing so He shows the abundance of His love for men and teaches him to give thanks. When He does not grant him what he needs, He makes him compensate for the thing he needs through the working of the mind and teaches him patience. Venerable Abba Dorotheos of Gaza

 

Remember in Your Prayers

John J. (B Duskcas)
Alan L (B Duskcas)
Richard (Wilkowski)
Charles (Oberg)
Christine (Kouzes)
Nina (Kovalev)
Hugh (Jacquie)
Violet (Jacquie Mom)
Tammie (Jacquie friend)
Phillip
Connie
Baby Luke
George
Priest Kyprianos
Presvytera Charlotte
Savannah (Jonson)
Bud
Silvana
Nicole
Evan
Megan
Bill R.
Pat R.
Aglaia
George
Hieromonk Serapion
Priest Kyprianos
Presvytera Charlotte
Bryan, Carolina, their unborn baby
Athanasia
Alexandra
Constantina
Maryanne (E)
Ron (E)
Tim
Robert (J)
Mary (J)
Patricia
Gregory
Andreas
Sofia Tešanovic
Paul
Dennis H. and Family
Victor Evan
Ann
James
Vasiliki
Efstratia
Alexandra
Nikos
Georgia
Ioannis
Costandino
Jeffrey
Vaso
Dave
Dimitri – Presbyter
Vassiliki
Octavio
Tom
Carl
Rena
Nikolay (5 year old boy in Bulgaria whose parents asked us to pray)
David
Rosie
Kathryn
Jeremy
Constantine
Robert
Jane
Theodora
David
Gina
Micheal
Haralambos
Lillian
Presbytera Rosy
Valentina
Eva W.
Barbara
Angela
Carol Ann
Matthew
Chrysostom
Tim
Pat
Christina
Maria Louise
Maximos
Marian
Photini
Nicholas
Sarah
Constantine Houpis
Anna Marie Smith Baker
Katerina
Mary Kassis
Baby Maximus
Christine
Maria
Annette Star
Claire Livaditis
Eva Chandilles
Baby Dani
Scott Nedoff
James Hord
Tom

How should we pray for the sick? Remember them daily. Say their names (first names are sufficient) and ask God to bestow mercy and grace on them.

Add or remove names and print this list for easy reference during your prayer time on the St. Peter website.

 

Sunday Readings

Christ Giving Blessing

Epistle

For the Eighth Sunday after Pentecost

The Lord will give strength to His people.
Ascribe to the Lord, O sons of God, ascribe to the Lord honor and glory.

The Reading from the First Epistle of St. Paul to the Corinthians. (1:10-17)

Brethren, I appeal to you, by the Name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree andthat there be no dissension among you, but that you be united in the same mind and the samejudgment. For it has been reported to me by Chloe’s people that there is quarreling among you,my brethren. What I mean is that each one of you says, “I belong to Paul,” or “I belong to Apollos,”or “I belong to Cephas,” or “I belong to Christ.” Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you?Or were you baptized in the name of Paul?

I thank God that I baptized none of you except Crisposand Gaius; lest anyone should say that you were baptized in my name. (I did baptize also thehousehold of Stephanas. Beyond that, I do not know whether I baptized anyone else.) For Christdid not send me to baptize but to preach the Gospel, and not with eloquent wisdom, lest the crossof Christ be emptied of its power.

Gospel

For the Eighth Sunday of Matthew

The Reading from the Holy Gospel according to St. Matthew. (14:14-22)

At that time, when Jesus went ashore he saw a great throng; and he had compassion onthem, and healed their sick. When it was evening, the disciples came to Him and said, “This is alonely place, and the day is now over; send the crowds away to go into the villages and buy foodfor themselves.” Jesus said, “They need not go away; you give them something to eat.” They saidto Him, “We have only five loaves here and two fish.” And He said, “Bring them here to Me.”Then He ordered the crowds to sit down on the grass; and taking the five loaves and the two fishHe looked up to Heaven, and blessed, and broke and gave the loaves to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. And they all ate and were satisfied. And they took up twelvebaskets full of the broken pieces left over. And those who ate were about five thousand men,besides women and children. Then Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go before Himto the other side, while He dismissed the crowds.

St. Peter Orthodox Church

President of AMEN Michael Bacleg Interviews Fr. Hans Jacobse

Antiochian Men (AMEN) is growing in the Miami Diocese, very fast actually, and there is a lot of good energy behind it. Fr. Hans has been appointed the Spiritual Advisor to the group by Bp. Nicholas.

What will AMEN do? It will bring together the men of the parish for friendship, fellowship, and work.

St. Peter’s Men:

Below AMEN President Interviews Fr. Hans Jacobse, the Spiritual Director of AMEN.