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St. Peter News April 6, 2021

St. John Climacus

Fourth Sunday of Great Lent
St. John of the Ladder

Hieromartyr Antypas, Bishop of Pergamum; Righteous Mothers Tryphaina and Matrona of Cyzicus

St. John of the Ladder (Climacus)

St. John of the Ladder (Climacus)

Our venerable and God-bearing Father John Climacus (ca. 579 – 649), also known as John of the Ladder, John Scholasticus, and John Sinaites, was a seventh century monk at St. Catherine’s monastery at the base of Mount Sinai.

He came to the monastery and became a novice when he was about 16 years old, and when he died in 649 he was the monastery’s abbot. He wrote a number of instructive books, the most famous of which is The Ladder of Divine Ascent. (It is because of this book that John is known as “Climacus,” which means “of the ladder”.)

It describes how to raise one’s soul to God, as if on a ladder. This book is one of the most widely read among Eastern Orthodox Christians, especially during the season of Great Lent which immediately precedes Pascha (Easter), and on the fourth Sunday of Great Lent he is especially commemorated.

Quotes from St. John

  • Repentance is the renewal of baptism.
  • Repentance is a contract with God for a second life.
  • A penitent is a buyer of humility.
  • Repentance is constant distrust of bodily comfort.
  • Repentance is self-condemning reflection, and carefree self-care.
  • Repentance is the daughter of hope and the renunciation of despair.
  • A penitent is an undisgraced convict.
  • Repentance is reconciliation with the Lord by the practice of good deeds contrary to the sins.
  • Repentance is purification of conscience.
  • Repentance is the voluntary endurance of all afflictions.
  • A penitent is the inflicter of his own punishments.
  • Repentance is a mighty persecution of the stomach, and a striking of the soul into vigorous awareness.

Read more on the Orthodoxwiki website.

Fr. Thomas Hopko on “St. John of the Ladder”

Fr. Thomas Hopko

Originally broadcast on March 11, 2008 Length: 13:24

It is at this point in our Lenten journey that the Church contemplates the instruction of St. John Climacus and his Ladder of Divine Ascent.

Fr. Tom takes us step by step through this treasure and makes it practical for us non-monastics!

Listen here:

Click to listen to the podcast

St. Basil Liturgy During Lent

St. Basil

On the Sundays of Lent we worship with the Liturgy of St. Basil instead of the Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom. What is the difference between the two? The Liturgy of St Basil is a bit longer because the priests prayers are longer, say 10 minutes or so.

The Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom (what we do on a regular Sunday) is derived from the Liturgy of St. Basil.

Learn About Lent

Learn about Lent

Click image to learn about Lent, Holy Week, and Pascha

Check out the rich resources about Lent and Holy Week on the Antiochian website.


Services this Week

  • Sunday Apr 4 — Sunday of the Veneration of the Cross LIVE STREAM
  • Mon Apr 5 — Great Compline 6:30pm LIVE STREAM
  • Wed Apr 7 — Presanctified Liturgy 6:30pm LIVE STREAM
  • Fri Apr 9 — Fourth Stanza Salutations 6:30pm LIVE STREAM

Did You Notice the Quality of the Paint Job in our New Church?

The painting of the Church was done by Eddie Kocani, a member of St. Peter’s and the owner and operator of AP Painting in Southwest Florida.

AP Painters does commercial and residential properties. Call Eddie when you need painting done. AP Painting also does plastering, wall paper removal, pressure washing, and cabinet finishing.

AP Painting does good work

Two Things to Remember About Our Church at Hickory Drive

  1. The Presbyterian Church will be using the Social Hall for their worship until they find a place to relocate. Do not enter the Social Hall before 10am on Sundays.
  2. US 41 is a busy highway and the intersection at Hickory Drive does not have a stop light. We recommend turning on Sanibel Boulevard and following Coconut Road instead.
Driving Safely

Say Hi to Our New Greeters

A Guide for Holy Week

We’ve started Greeters Ministry? Your job? To welcome everyone coming to St. Peter’s.

Would you like to be a greeter? Contact Joe Repya on Sunday.

Schedule for April:

  • Sunday April 4 – Joe Repya, Thoma Sovjani
  • Sunday April 11 – Barbara D, Doug Kucera
  • Sunday April 18 – Joe Repya, Thoma Sovjani
  • Sunday April 25 – Pavlo, Zannos Grekos

Coming Soon: Antiochian Men!

The new parish means new responsibilities and the men can step up. A lot of men already have with the move contributing hours of work and sweat to bring the building into shape. We could also do other things too, say breakfast one Saturday a month. It would be a great time for fellowship.

Stay tuned! The Church needs you men.


Palm Sunday Brunch on April 25, 2021

Sign up in Social Hall

The brunch follows the Divine Liturgy. Sign up in the Social Hall.


We Need Help in the Social Hall!

As the church grows so do the jobs. Everyone in the parish needs to take on a job. Please see Tom Haley to volunteer in these areas:

  • Coffee Lead
  • Table Lead
  • Clean Up

New on the St. Peter Website

The St. Peter website has been updated and slightly revamped. New on the site (click the images):

A Guide for Holy Week
Why Orthodox Men Love Church
Go to Church!
Pascha in Dachau

Cafe of Life Ministry

Thank you to the volunteers who came in last week to make sandwiches in our new St. Peter’s Social Hall, and to those who have donated their time and money to the poor, homeless, and hungry in our community. Please help us to continue this important mission by giving generously.

Remember: “Whoever sows sparing will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under complusion, for God loves a cheerful giver” (1 Corinthians 9:6-7).

Thank you, Kali Sarakosti and IC XC NI KA.


Women’s Book Club

The next meeting for the Women’s book club will be held on Wednesday May 5, 2021 after Holy Pascha.


Pledge & Income Report – March 2021

Donations received in March: $23,199.
Amount of money needed to cover expenses: $21,399.
We are ahead by $1,800.

These numbers reflect the operating costs of the the Hickory Drive property.

Please note:Please continue your generous support. If you cannot make it to church please mail in your donation to:

Don't forget your pledge!

St. Peter Orthodox Church
7470 Hickory Drive
Fort Myers, FL 33967


You can also donate online:


Bishop NICHOLAS Offers a Weekly Live Stream

These are short thirty minute presentations where His Grace Bp. Nicholas speaks on one theme in Sunday readings for fifteen minutes followed by questions from the listeners. It’s worth tuning in. Get instructions on the St. Peter website on how to use the Band App on your phone or computer to participate.


Calendar At A Glance

Calendar also available on the St. Peter website.


  • Sunday Apr 4 — Sunday of the Veneration of the Cross LIVE STREAM
    Greeters: Joe Repya, Thoma Sovjani
  • Mon Apr 5 — Great Compline 6:30pm LIVE STREAM
  • Wed Apr 7 — Presanctified Liturgy 6:30pm LIVE STREAM
  • Thu Apr 8 — Cafe of Life Sandwich Making 10:00am
  • Fri Apr 9 — Fourth Stanza Salutations 6:30pm LIVE STREAM
  • Sunday Apr 11 — Sunday of St. John of the Ladder LIVE STREAM
    Greeters: Barbara D, Doug Kucera
  • Mon Apr 12 — Great Compline 6:30pm LIVE STREAM
  • Wed Apr 14 — Presanctified Liturgy 6:30pm LIVE STREAM
  • Fri Apr 16 — Complete Salutations/Akathist Hymn 6:30pm LIVE STREAM
  • Sunday April 18 — Sunday of St. Mary of Egypt LIVE STREAM
    Greeters: Joe Repya, Thoma Sovjani
  • Mon Apr 19 — Great Compline 6:30pm LIVE STREAM
  • Wed Apr 21 — Presanctified Liturgy 6:30pm LIVE STREAM
  • Fri Apr 23 — Small Compline with Canon of St. Lazarus 6:30pm LIVE STREAM
  • Sat Apr 24 — Lazarus Saturday Liturgy 9:30am / Baptisms / Make crosses / Pancake
    breakfast / Children confessions – Full Schedule TBA LIVE STREAM


  • Sunday April 25 — Palm Sunday LIVE STREAM
    Greeters: Pavlo, Zannos Grekos
    Brunch in Social Hall following Divine Liturgy
    Bridegroom Service 6:30pm LIVE STREAM
  • Mon Apr 26 — HOLY MONDAY – Bridegroom Service 6:30pm LIVE STREAM
  • Tue Apr 27 — HOLY TUESDAY – Bridegroom Service 6:30pm LIVE STREAM
  • Wed Apr 28 — HOLY WEDNESDAY – Holy Unction 6:30pm LIVE STREAM
  • Thu Apr 29 — HOLY THURSDAY – Liturgy of the Last Supper 9:30am LIVE STREAM
    Reading of the Twelve Gospels 6:00pm (note earlier time)
  • Fri Apr 30 — HOLY FRIDAY – Royal Hours 9:00am LIVE STREAM
    Decoration of Tomb of Christ 10:30am
    Taking Christ Down from the Cross 3:00pm LIVE STREAM
    Lamentations 6:30pm LIVE STREAM
  • Sat May 1 — HOLY SATURDAY – First Resurrection Service 9:30am LIVE STREAM
    Great and Holy Pascha — 10:00pm LIVE STREAM
  • Sun May 2 — Agape Vespers 11:00am LIVE STREAM
    Paschal Dinner in Social Hall 1:00pm / Easter egg hunt for children

Wisdom From The Elders

The way of humility is this: self-control, prayer, and thinking yourself inferior to all creatures. Abba Thithoes

A person who is accustomed to humiliation attracts the grace of God. Elder Porphyrios

It is a spiritual gift from God for a man to perceive his sins. Venerable Isaac the Syrian, bishop of Nineveh

Mental prayer does not allow either distractions or foul thoughts to enter the inner sanctum. Venerable Abba Dorotheos of Gaza

The beginnings of prayer do not reside in a method, in a specific style or form of practice. They are a cry of the heart, a longing of the soul. If you have discovered this longing within yourself, even if its precise shape or source or focus remains un­known to you, then you have within you the seeds from which prayer can grow. But these seeds must be fostered, watered! Bishop Irenei Steenberg

If one has not made the decision about death and is not prepared to die, nothing can be achieved. It all starts from there. Saint Paisios of Mount Athos


Remember in Your Prayers

The Prayer List has been revamped. To bring order to the list we will do the following:

  • Names will remain on the list for two months.
  • If you would like to keep them on longer please mention it to Fr. Hans. We will keep the names on the list for as long as the person needs prayers.
  • Names will include the person who requested the prayers and the month the name will be removed.
  • The permanent list includes friends and members of St. Peter’s and others including shut-ins.

Were names dropped that should have remained? Please mention it to Fr. Hans. He will add them back.

Current Prayer List (Updated April 3 / Resets May 1)

Maryann (Breitenbach 6/21)
Sandra (Dusckas 6/21)
David (Dusckas 6/21)
Steven (Dusckas 6/21)
Jean (Wolffe 6/21)
Robin (Wolffe 6/21)
Debbie (Breitenbach 6/21)
Michael (Jacobse 4/21)
Kathy (Jacobse 4/21)
Raphaela (4/21)
Michael (Wolffe 4/21)
Fredericos (Diveris 4/21)
Vasiliki (Diveris 4/21)
Panagiota (Jacobse 4/21)
Michelene (Repya 4/21)
Colleen ((Repya 4/21)
Fr. Demetrios (Copeland 4/21)
Kondylia (Chapekis 4/21)
Brian (Colis 3/21)
Maria(Colis 3/21)
John (Jacobse 3/21)
Mary (Jacobse 3/21)
Herman (Kerr 3/21)
Innocent (Kerr 3/21)
Nickolas (Kerr 3/21)
Barbara (Dusckas 3/21)
Irina (Jacobse 3/21)
Lee Joseph (Irina 3/21)
Paola (Jacobse 3/21>
Bryce (NA 3/21)

Permanent Prayer List

Gregory (Yankopolos)
Soterios (Ninos)
Pauline (Poulos)
Angela and Unborn Child (Chapekis)
Sergio (Kazakos)
Rae (Semeretis)
Fran (Hansen)
Nina (Krotov)
George the Priest (Chapekis)
Franklin (Pyrrson)
George (Chionis)
Stamatia (Jacobse)
Stamatia (Evelyn)
Demetrios (Kuchera)
Theodosios (Palis)
Theodora (Webb)
Helen (Rogers)
Robert (Smith)
Robert (Jarvis)
Presbytera Rosy (in Pakistan)
James (Hord)
Ann (Rellis)
Vassiliki (Kontinos)
Vassiliki (Morekeas)

Founders, Members, and Benefactors Departed this Life

John (Hansen)
Anatoly (Kurdsjuk)
Thareni (Brooks)
Milan Evanoff
Jean (Sam)
Eleni (Pearson)
Richard (Pearson)
Fr. Stephanos (Shagoury)
Panagiota (Bea Chionis)
Anthony (Mourgis)
Anthony (Mankus)
Constantine (Houpis)
Constantine (Joseph)
Mary (Jarvis)
Panagiota Margarita (Palis)
Maria (Ninos)
John (Katsigianopoulos)
Gregory (Pappas)

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

Search the Scriptures


The Lord will give strength to His people.
The Lord will bless His people with peace.

The Reading from the Epistle of St. Paul to the Hebrews. (6:13-20)

Brethren, when God made a promise to Abraham, since He had no one greater by whomto swear, He swore by Himself, saying, “Surely I will bless you and multiply you.” And thusAbraham, having patiently endured, obtained the promise. Men indeed swear by one greater thanthemselves, and in all their disputes an oath is final for confirmation. So when God desired to showmore convincingly to the heirs of the promise the unchangeable character of His purpose, He interposed with an oath. So that through two unchangeable things, in which it is impossible thatGod should prove false, we who have fled for refuge might have strong encouragement to seizethe hope set before us. We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that entersinto the inner shrine behind the curtain, where Jesus has gone as a forerunner on our behalf, havingbecome a high priest forever after the order of Melchizedek.


The Reading from the Holy Gospel according to St. Mark. (9:17-31)

At that time, a man came to Jesus, kneeling down and saying unto him, “Teacher, I broughtmy son to you, for he has a dumb spirit. And wherever it seizes him, it dashes him down; and hefoams and grinds his teeth and becomes rigid; and I asked Thy Disciples to cast it out, and theywere not able.” And Jesus answered them, “O faithless generation, how long am I to be with you?How long am I to bear with you? Bring him to Me.” And they brought the boy to Him; and whenthe spirit saw Jesus, immediately it convulsed the boy, and he fell on the ground and rolled about,foaming at the mouth.

And Jesus asked his father, “How long has he had this?” And he said, “From childhood. And it has often cast him into the fire and into the water, to destroy him; but if Thou canst do anything, have pity on us and help us.” And Jesus said to him, “If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes.” Immediately the father of the child cried out and said with tears, “Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!” And when Jesus saw that a crowd came running together, he rebuked the unclean spirit, saying to it, “You dumb and deaf spirit, I command you,come out of him, and never enter him again.” And after crying out and convulsing him terribly, it came out, and the boy was like a corpse; so that most of them said, “He is dead.” But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him up, and he arose.

And when Jesus had entered the house, His Disciples asked Him privately, “Why could we not cast it out?” And Jesus said to them, “This kind cannot be driven out by anything but prayer and fasting.” They went on from there and passed through Galilee. And Jesus would not have anyone know it; for He was teaching His Disciples,saying to them, “The Son of man will be delivered into the hands of men, and they will kill Him; and after He is killed, He will rise on the third day.”

St. Peter Orthodox Church