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St. Peter News October 18, 2021

Eighteenth Sunday after Pentecost
Sixth Sunday of Luke

Great-Martyr Arethas (al-Haarith) and companions in Arabia, Martyr Sebastiana of Heraclea; Righteous Elesbaan, King of Ethiopia

The Holy Fathers of the Seventh Ecumenical Council

Great-Martyr Arethas

These Martyrs contested for piety’s sake in the year 524 in Najran, a city of Arabia Felix (present-day Yemen). When Dhu Nuwas, ruler of the Himyarite tribe in south Arabia, and a Judaizer (convert to Judaism), took power over King Elesbaan of Ethiopia who ruled in that area, he sought to blot out Christianity, especially at Najran, a Christian city. Against the counsels of Arethas, Governor of Najran, the city surrendered to Dhu Nuwas, who immediately broke the word that he would come in peace which he had given and sought to compel the city to renounce Christ.

The tyrant first wreaked his wrath on the holy bishop Paul, who had died two years before. He had his tomb opened and ordered his holy and much venerated relics to be burnt. He went on to burn all the priests, monks, nuns and clergy in the city, to the number of 477 persons. Then he beheaded 127 pious layfolk who offered their life to Christ.

Then, led by Saint Arethas, 340 Christians were brought before the tyrant. Arethas had to be carried to the place of judgement, for so distressed was he at seeing in his old age such torments raining down upon his fellow-citizens, that his strength left him. Yet he still showed confidence and courage before the King, and meekly and calmly he encouraged his companions to reach perfection by way of martyrdom and to do so joyfully in the name of the Lord that they may enter into His joy in glory. The people wept at his speech and all embraced one another with tears, giving each other a holy kiss. Arethas was beheaded first, and after all the people anointed their foreheads with his blood, they met their death with joy.

After the men had been slain, all the free-born Christian women of Najran were brought before the tyrant and commanded to abjure Christ or die; yet they rebuked the persecutor with such boldness that he said even the men had not insulted him so contemptuously. So great was their faith that not one woman was found to deny Christ in all Najran, although some of them suffered torments more bitter than most of the men.


Read more on the Mystagogy website.


Services Next Week

  • Sun Oct 17 — SUNDAY DIVINE LITURGY – Orthros 8:30am Divine Liturgy 9:30am LIVE STREAM
  • Mon Oct 18 — Divine Liturgy St. Luke the Apostle LIVE STREAM
  • Fri Oct 22 — Paraklesis to the Theotokos 9:30am LIVE STREAM

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Metropolitan Joseph: We Must Address the Alienation of our Youth

Met. Joseph

From Metropolitan Joseph:

Dear Clergy of the Antiochian Archdiocese,

The attached “Encyclical for the Year of Youth” is a call for all of us together to confront the growing alienation between our youth and our parish communities.

It is time for us to ask questions of ourselves and one another, in repentance, seeking genuine understanding. Instead of casting blame, we must accept responsibility to be the living examples and spiritual mentors our youth need. This is the duty not just of priests and youth workers but also of parents and every adult in our communities. And we also need our youth to open their hearts to us, to be honest with us, and to trust us to be partners with them in seeking Christ.

This is a critical concern across our land, and we must all rise to the challenge. Please read the encyclical with care and share it with your parishes. Since addressing this challenge is among the highest priorities of our ministry, I expect that every parish council will have a discussion on it and that our Sunday School teachers, parents, men’s and ladies’ groups, youth, college students, and young adults will likewise meet to discuss it and begin the dialogue it calls for.

Read the Encyclical “The Year of Our Youth” on the St. Peter website.


Life at St. Peter’s


Some of our young people playing after the Divine Liturgy.

Kids playing

Cafe of Life Ministry Update

Cafe of Life

Praise be to God!

Last week St. Peter’s provided over 100 sandwiches and fresh fruit to the poor in our area.

Cafe of Life is a “faith based organization believing in the teaching that one must love and help one’s neighbor in time of need.”

What blessing to join forces with other churches and businesses to share God’s love in such a simple and impactful way. To learn more about Cafe of Life visit their website.

Watch for more opportunities to help in the future. Any monetary donations can be given directly to Fr. Hans. It costs around $200 to buy the food every month.

Thank you, God bless and IC XC NI KA!

St. Peter Orthodox Church

Pledge & Income Report – September 2021

Donations received in September: $21,018.
Amount of money needed to cover expenses: $22,760.
We are behind by $1,742.

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

Don't forget your pledge!

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


You can also donate online:

St. Peter Orthodox Church
Social Hall All Stars

The Social Hall All Stars are the men and women that make St. Peter’s Social Hall happen. Thank you All Stars!

October 3 – October 26

  • Barbara Dionysopoulos
  • Marianthi Kazakos
  • Niki Locklear
  • Ray Locklear
  • Carol Palantine
  • Margie Zimmerman

November 7 – November 28

  • Olga Bilych
  • Pavlo Bilych
  • Bonnie Joseph
  • Al Joseph
  • Sandy Krotov
  • Leon Dephkalion
  • Nader Sahawneh

December 5 – December 26

  • Marlene Haley
  • Tom Haley
  • Cheryl Morse
  • Elaine Semeretis
  • Gregory Semeretis
  • Anna Tsikitas

Procedures for Hospitality

New procedures for coffee hour
  1. On most Sundays we will serve lighter refreshments like coffee, sweets, hummus, olives, feta, pita and similar items. Please continue bringing these items. Even though we have a range (unlike our former facility), we appreciate items that are “ready to be served.”
  2. Please do not donate coffee. We have a space age coffee brewer that we acquired at no cost if we buy our coffee from one supplier. If you bring in coffee, we can’t use it.
  3. We cannot continue preparing meals for Memorials, Name Days, Anniversaries, and other celebrations. We don’t have the appliances or manpower to do it well. We do, however, have the name of two catering companies that can prepare and deliver the food if you would like to sponsor a celebration. Please call Tom Haley at 239-887-0753 for details and to make arrangements.
  4. If you would like to bring in your own prepared food, please contact Tom Haley at 239-887-0753 a week before the upcoming Sunday. That way we know not to prepare any food for Sunday.

The Safest Way to Come to Church

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

Calendar At A Glance

Calendar also available on the St. Peter website.


  • Sun Oct 17 — SUNDAY DIVINE LITURGY – Orthros 8:30am Divine Liturgy 9:30am LIVE STREAM
  • Mon Oct 18 — Divine Liturgy St. Luke the Apostle LIVE STREAM
  • Fri Oct 22 — Paraklesis to the Theotokos 9:30am LIVE STREAM
  • Sun Oct 24 — SUNDAY DIVINE LITURGY – Orthros 8:30am Divine Liturgy 9:30am LIVE STREAM
  • Sun Oct 24 — John and Mary Spiropoulos Memorial 11:00am LIVE STREAM
  • Tue Oct 26 — Divine Liturgy St. Demetrios LIVE STREAM
  • Thu Oct 28 — Divine Liturgy Protection of the Theotokos 9:30am LIVE STREAM

Wisdom From The Elders

In Paradise,each person will see the glory of God in accordance with the purity of the eyes of their soul. The degree of visibility will not be determined by God, but will depend on each person’s purity. Saint Paisios of Mount Athos

In order to purify and stimulate our prayer, the Lord allows the Devil to painfully inflame our inward parts, so that we, feeling a strange fire within us, and suffering from it, may endeavour to bring into our heart by means of humble prayer the fire of God, the fire of the Holy Ghost giving life to our hearts. Righteous John, Wonderworker of Kronstadt

Blessed is he who despises all earthly things, and who is wounded by the love of God, by heavenly love. But how few such men there are amongst the fallen sons of Adam! Righteous John, Wonderworker of Kronstadt

We must understand that as long as we are still attached to anything earthly, as long as we lean on anything within or without that is not God, as long as we find our enjoyment in something created, we are unfit to be a burnt offering. We must come to the point of endeavoring to renounce all this, making all the lives inside us stop, with only one life remaining—life in God. Fr. Jack Sparks

That a small Christian child is wiser than philosophers has been shown by experience. This experience is repeated sometimes today, but in earlier times it was everywhere. For example, during the period of martyrdom, small children discoursed on Christ the Saviour, on the folly of idol-worship, on the future life, and the like; this was because their mother or father had explained these things to them in simple conversations. These truths had then become close to the heart, which began to treasure them all the way to readiness to die for them. St. Theophan the Recluse, bishop of Tambov

We have replaced strict church singing of the past two centuries with Italian, concert singing, which satisfies the worldly-minded and is, therefore, favored by our contemporaries who wallow in emotionalism. Archbishop Averky (Taushev)

Remember in Your Prayers

List has been updated. If you want some names restored, please mention it to Fr. Hans.

  • 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.

Updated October 8 / Resets November 1.

Current Prayer List

Fr. Thomas Galloway (Forderhase 12/21)
Emily (Forderhase 12/21)
Sean (Breitenbach 12/21)
David (Zafiris 12/21
Robin (Zafiris 12/21
Dana (Zafiris 12/21
Mackenzie (Zafiris 12/21
Harry (Zafiris 12/21
Bettina (Zafiris 12/21
Harry James (Zafiris 12/21
Anastasia (Protopapadakis 12/21)
Heather (Dusckas 11/21)
Barbara (Dusckas 11/21)
Tina (Dusckas 11/21)
Gail (Dusckas 11/21)
Dave (Dusckas 11/21)
Elizabeth (Wolfe 11/21)
Catherine (Breitenbach 11/21)
Maggie (Jacobse 10/21)
Georgia D. (Repya 10/21)
Colleen R. (Repya 10/21)
Debbie (Breitenbach 9/21)
Anne (Breitenbach 9/21)
Robert (Tewis 9/21)
Lydia (Irena 9/21)
Lee (Irena 9/21)
Demetrios (Karras 8/21)

Permanent Prayer List

John (Long)
Pantelis (Tsikita)
Marisa (Tsikita)
Barbara (Dionysopoulos)
Patricia (Evanoff)
Gabriel (Mankus)
Baby Dani (Repya)
Maria and her unborn child Iakovos (Diveris)
Sophia (D. Constantine)
Herman (Kerr)
Innocent (Kerr)
Nicholas (Kerr)
Paola (Jacobse)
Gregory (Yankopolos)
Soterios (Ninos)
Pauline (Poulos)

Sergio (Kazakos)
Rae (Semeretis)
Fran (Hansen)
Nina (Krotov)
Franklin (Pyrrson)
George (Chionis)
Stamatia (Evelyn)
Demetrios (Kuchera)
Theodosios (Palis)
Theodora (Webb)
Helen (Rogers)
Robert (Smith)
Robert (Jarvis)
Presbytera Rosy (in Pakistan)
James (Hord)
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)
George (Chionis)
Gregory (Pappas)
Angela (Coran K)

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


For the Eighteenth Sunday after Pentecost

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

The Reading from the Second Epistle of St. Paul to the Corinthians. (9:6-11)

Brethren, the one who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly; and the one who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. Let each one do according to what he has purposed in his heart, not grudgingly, or under compulsion; for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace abound to you; that you, having always all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work. As it is written: “He has scattered abroad, He has given to the poor; His righteousness endures forever”; now He, who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food, will supply and multiply your seed for sowing, and increase the harvest of your righteousness. You will be enriched in all things for every generosity, which works through us thanksgiving to God.



For the Sixth Sunday of Luke

The Reading from the Holy Gospel according to St. Luke. (8:26-39)

At that time, Jesus arrived at the country of the Gadarenes, which is opposite Galilee. And as He stepped out on land, there met Him a man from the city who had demons; for a long time he had worn no clothes, and he lived not in a house but among the tombs. When he saw Jesus, he cried out and fell down before him, and said with a loud voice, “What hast Thou to do with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I beseech Thee, do not torment me.” For Jesus had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man. [For many a time it had seized him; he was kept under guard, and bound with chains and fetters, but he broke the bonds and was driven by the demon into the desert.]

Jesus then asked him, “What is your name?” And he said, “Legion”; for many demons had entered him. And they begged Jesus not to command them to depart into the abyss. Now a large herd of swine was feeding there on the hillside; and they begged Jesus to let them enter these. So He gave them leave. Then the demons came out of the man and entered the swine, and the herd rushed down the steep bank into the lake and was drowned. When the herdsmen saw what had happened, they fled, and told it in the city and in the country.

Then people went out to see what had happened, and they came to Jesus, and found the man from whom the demons had gone, sitting at the feet of Jesus, clothed and in his right mind; and they were afraid. And those who had seen it told them how he who had been possessed with demons was healed. Then all the people of the surrounding country of the Gadarenes asked Jesus to depart from them; for they were seized with great fear; so He got into the boat and returned.

The man from whom the demons had gone begged that he might be with Jesus; but Jesus sent him away, saying, “Return to your home, and declare all that God has done for you.” And he went away, proclaiming throughout the whole city all that Jesus had done for him.

St. Peter Orthodox Church