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St. Peter Newsletter August 4, 2020

The Transfiguration of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ

The Ninth Sunday after Pentecost
The Ninth Sunday of Matthew
The After-feast of the Transfiguration of Christ

Apostle Matthias
Translation of the relics of Venerable Herman of Alaska,
Wonderworker of America


Dormtion Fast and Akathist Hymns begin (August 1-15, 2018)

Dormition of the Theotokos
Dormition of the Theotokos

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 August 15.

On Monday, Wednesday, and Friday  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.

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.

Divine Liturgy for the Feast of the Transfiguration on August 6, 9:30am

The Transfiguration of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ
The Transfiguration of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ

The Feast of the Transfiguration of Our Lord, God and Savior Jesus Christ is celebrated each year on August 6. The feast commemorates the transfiguration or metamorphosis of Christ on Mount Tabor, when our Lord appeared in His divine glory before the Apostles Peter, James, and John.

Biblical Story

The event of the Transfiguration is recorded in three of the four Gospels: Matthew 17:1-9, Mark 9:2-8, and Luke 9:28-36. Jesus took the Apostles Peter, James, and John with Him up upon a mountain, and while they were on the mountain Jesus was transfigured. His face shone like the sun, and His garments became glistening white.

Moses and Elijah appeared with Christ, talking to Him. Peter declared how good it was for them to be there and expressed the desire to build three booths for Moses, Elijah, and Christ. This reference to the booths could imply that this occurred during the time of the Feast of Tabernacles when the Jews would be camping out in the fields for the grape harvest; for this Feast had acquired other associations in the course of its history, including the memory of the wanderings in the wilderness recorded in the Old Testament book of Exodus.

While Peter was speaking, a bright cloud overshadowed them. A voice came from the cloud saying, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to Him.” When the disciples heard this they fell on their faces filled with awe. Jesus came to them and told them to not be afraid. When the three looked up they saw only Jesus.

As Jesus and His disciples came down the mountain, He told them not to speak of what they had seen until He had risen from the dead.

Source: Greek Orthodox Archdiocese.


St. Peter Launches New Ministry to Help the Poor

Helping the poor is a necessary obligation to our neighbors and thus to God. He who loves his brother loves God, St. John tells us in his first epistle (see 1 John 1).

For the last four months we have working with Cafe of Life in Bonita Springs to make over one hundred sandwiches for the local poor once a month. They serve needy families who don’t have food on the weekends.

The first six months of the project has been underwritten by an anonymous donor. It costs nearly $200 to buy the bread, lunch meat, and cheese to make the sandwiches. Volunteers from the parish make them. They are distributed during the weekend by Cafe of Life.

We have two months left on the original donation, and already three donors have stepped up for the following three months. Helping the poor is a great way to bless God (yes, God blesses us but we also bless God — read the Psalms), because the poor are always close to God’s heart.

You might consider a donation to remember the memory of a loved one who has passed away. It brings honor to them through your help of the poor.

For more information, to sponsor a month, or to help make the sandwiches, please contact Julia Grekos or Pasraskeve Morakeas. This ministry is in addition to our help with Interfaith Charities.

Helping the poor through the Cafe of Life

July 2020 Summer Appeal

Giving tends to slow down in the summer but unfortunately our obligations don’t. There is still rent, electricity, and other necessities that we have to pay.

The letter below was sent to all parishioners as a gentle reminder to remain current on their pledges and giving. That we we stay in the black and remain on a sound financial footing.

Please stay current on your pledge and giving to help keep St. Peter’s strong.

Click the image to see letter on the St. Peter website.


Pledge & Income Report – June 2020

Donations received in June: $15,642.00
Amount of money needed to cover expenses: $18,167.00
We are ahead by $2,300.00
Shortfall: $2,525.00

Please note: We are running a deficit for the month of June. Donations are also down significantly for the month of July. If you cannot make it to church please mail in your donation to:

St. Peter Orthodox Church
24850 Old 41 Road Suite 6
Bonita Springs, FL 34135


You can also donate online (scroll to bottom of page):


Calendar At A Glance


August 1-15 Dormition Fasting Period

  • Mon Aug 03 — Paraklesis Service 6:30pm LIVE STREAM
  • Tue Aug 4 — Byzantine Chant Workshop at St. Paul Naples 7:00pm
  • Wed Aug 05 — Paraklesis Service 6:30pm LIVE STREAM
  • Fri Aug 07 — Paraklesis Service 6:30pm LIVE STREAM

  • Sun Aug 09 — Orthros 8:30am / Liturgy 9:30am LIVE STREAM
  • Mon Aug 10 — Paraklesis Service 6:30pm LIVE STREAM
  • Tue Aug 11 — Byzantine Chant Workshop at St. Paul Naples 7:00pm
  • Wed Aug 12 — Paraklesis Service 6:30pm LIVE STREAM
  • Fri Aug 14 — Paraklesis Service 6:30pm LIVE STREAM
  • Sat Aug 15 — DORMITION OF THE THEOTOKOS Divine Liturgy 9:30am LIVE STREAM

  • Sun Aug 16 — Orthros 8:30am / Liturgy 9:30am LIVE STREAM
  • Tue Aug 18 — Byzantine Chant Workshop at St. Paul Naples 7:00pm

  • Sun Aug 23 — Orthros 8:30am / Liturgy 9:30am LIVE STREAM
  • Tue Aug 25 — Byzantine Chant Workshop at St. Paul Naples 7:00pm

  • Sun Aug 30 — Orthros 8:30am / Liturgy 9:30am LIVE STREAM


Wisdom From The Elders

Irritability of temper proceeds from want of self-knowledge, from pride, and also from the fact that we do not consider the great corruption of our nature, and know but little the meek and humble Jesus. Righteous John, Wonderworker of Kronstadt

The surest means of salvation for you is one and the same: endure patiently whatever God sends, both good and bad.
Elder Anatoly of Optina

You have not as yet fought unto blood, and have you in fact fought against the enemy, against your own passions? Have you not lived as you pleased? Abbot Nikon Vorobiev

We must struggle, because without struggles we do not obtain virtues. Elder Ieronymos of Aegina

When we see that many people avidly seek their happiness in sensual pursuits, in sensual pleasures, in comfort, and in lux­ury and pass this off as wisdom; when we see that the children of the world use every falsehood and every deception to construct their earthly happiness; when we hear that they defend hatred, vindictiveness, and other passions, but consider refusal to satisfy sensual desires to be foolishness; then we must resolutely say in our hearts, as the holy apostles taught: “We are Christians; we must fulfill the law of Christ (Gal. 6:2)”, and the law of Christ requires that we have crucfied the flesh with the affections and lusts (Gal. 5:24). Metropolitan Gregory (Postnikov) of St. Petersburg

Therefore, a humble person is not weak, but actually strong, because God’s power manifests itself and acts through him; the proud man is weak, for he rejects God’s all-powerful grace and is left with only his human powers, which are, of course, immeasurably weaker and less significant than God’s all-powerful grace. Archbishop Averky (Taushev)


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 (Resets August 1)

Sergio (Mary Kazakos10/22)
Libby Ann (Riccioli 10/22)
Moria (Fr. Hans 10/22)
Paraskeve (Fr. Hans 10/22)
Gregory (Fr. Hans 10/22)
Andrea (Sarros 10/22)
Basil (Sarros 10/22)
Margaret (Sarros 10/22)
Douglas (Dusckas 9/20)
Susan (Wolffe 9/20)
Grant [Van Berkom] (Zeena 9/20)
Barbara (Dusckas 9/20)
John (Troutman 9/20)
Dave (Dusckas 9/20)
Constandina (Stephania 9/20)
Steven (Breitenbach 9/20)
Irini (Tsikitas 9/20)
Lori (Dusckas 8/20)
Patricia (Copeland 8/20)
Demetrios (Copeland 8/20)
Efstathios (Mourgis 8/20)

Permanent Prayer List

Demetrios (Kuchera)
Margaret (Palis)
Theodosios (Palis)
Theodora (Webb)
Helen (Rogers)
Robert (Smith)
Robert (Jarvis)
Mary (Jarvis)
Presbytera Rosy (in Pakistan)
James (Hord)
Ann (Rellis)
Vassiliki (Kontinos)
Vassiliki (Morekeas)
Scott (Repya)
Bud (Repya)

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)

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


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.


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