St. Peter Newsletter — February 14, 2014

The Prodigal Son

Four Items to Ponder About the Prodigal Son

The reading this Sunday is about the Prodigal Son. To prepare for the sermon please think over these four points:

  1. The word prodigal means to be wasteful especially with money.
  2. In Jewish custom the oldest son got double the inheritance, all other sons got a single portion.
  3. In the original Greek, the phrase “He came to his senses” actually reads “He came to himself” meaning something like “he found himself.” This is important regarding how we understand repentance.
  4. The older brother’s discontent was entirely justified given the culture of his time.

Rena Brooks – May Her Memory be Eternal

rena-brooksOur prayers are extended to the family of Rena Brooks, particularly her daughters Christine and Susan and their families.

She was a very much loved member and supporter of St. Peter’s and we will miss her deeply.

May her memory be eternal.

Painting with a Russian Master Icon Workshop

The Lee County Alliance for the Arts is offering an iconography workshop for anyone interested in learning more about the craft from March 4 – April 1 on Tuesday evenings.

The workshop is offered by iconographer Vladimir Blagonadezhdin. In this course students will learn the ancient Christian art form of iconography. They will learn how to work with traditional materials, recipes and methods used by both ancient and modern artists in order to create masterpieces using the egg tempera technique.

Classes will be held at the Alliance for the Arts in Fort Myers.

For more information please go to the Alliance for the Arts website.

Do Receive the WORD Magazine?

word-coverThe WORD Magazine is the official publication of the Antiochian Archdiocese and is offered free to all parishioners.

Several people have mentioned that they do not receive it. We need to correct that.

If you do not receive the magazine, please go to the website and fill in the form. We will pass you information along to the publishers so they can put you on the mailing list.

We Need a Secretary/Administrator!

St. Peter’s needs your help!

secretaryThere is some administrative/secretarial work to do to keep St. Peter’s running smoothly. We need someone to help us for the next year.

Basically it involves such things as keeping track of who does the Sunday Fellowship hour, sending out thank you notes, notifying members of board meetings, keep track of necessary announcements, that sort of thing. (Think of what Mary Copeland has been doing.)

Most of this can be done at home through email.

If you can volunteer, please speak to either Jack Long, John Hansen, or Fr. Hans.

A special thank you to Mary Copeland who has handled so much of this over the past few years.

We are Going Digital

keyboardWhen St. Peter’s started Mary Jarvis took over the laborious job as treasurer and built our bookkeeping from the ground up. She has done a fantastic job and gave many hours to keep our books as clean as a whistle.

Now Mary is moving on and Stan Venetis has graciously agreed to take over.

We thought it would be a good time to computerize our systems. We have grown to the point where doing the books by hand takes too much time and now is a good time to make the move.

A special thank you goes to Bettina Zifiras who researched all the available church management programs and made recommendations to the Parish Council. We picked one and Bettina is putting all our data into the new program.

We chose one that works with QuickBooks, the industry standard for managing finances. It’s reliable and will grow as we grow.

A special thank you to Mary Jarvis for her good work in getting us where we are!

Sunday Scripture Readings

Epistle

Ancient Cover for the Bible

(For Sunday of the Prodigal Son)

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. (6:12-20)

Brethren, all things are lawful for me, but not all things are helpful. All things are lawful for me, but I will not be enslaved by anything. Food is meant for the stomach and the stomach for food; but God will destroy both one and the other. The body is not meant for immorality, but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body. And God raised the Lord and will also raise us up by His power.

Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Shall I therefore take the members of Christ and make them members of a prostitute? Never! Do you not know that he who joins himself to a prostitute becomes one body with her? For, as it is written, “The two shall become one flesh.” But he who is united to the Lord becomes one spirit with Him.

Shun immorality. Every other sin which a man commits is outside the body; but the immoral man sins against his own body. Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, which you have from God? You are not your own; you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.

Gospel

(For Sunday of the Prodigal Son)

The Reading from the Holy Gospel according to St. Luke. (15:11-32)

The Prodigal Son

The Lord spoke this parable: “There was a man who had two sons; and the younger of them said to his father, ‘Father, give me the share of property that falls to me.’ And he divided his living between them. Not many days later, the younger son gathered all he had and took his journey into a far country, and there he squandered his property in loose living. And when he had spent everything, a great famine arose in that country, and he began to be in want.

So he went and joined himself to one of the citizens of that country, who sent him into his fields to feed swine. And he would gladly have fed on the pods that the swine ate; and no one gave him anything. But when he came to himself he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired servants have bread enough and to spare, but I perish here with hunger! I will arise and go to my father, and I will say to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you; I am no longer worthy to be called your son; treat me as one of your hired servants.”’

And he arose and came to his father. But while he was yet at a distance, his father saw him and had compassion, and ran and embraced him and kissed him. And the son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you; I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’ But the father said to his servants, ‘Bring quickly the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet; and bring the fatted calf and kill it, and let us eat and make merry; for this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found.’ And they began to make merry.

Now his elder son was in the field; and as he came and drew near to the house, he heard music and dancing. And he called one of the servants and asked what this meant. And he said to him, ‘Your brother has come, and your father has killed the fatted calf, because he has received him safe and sound.’ But he was angry and refused to go in. His father came out and entreated him, but he answered his father, ‘Lo, these many years I have served you, and I never disobeyed your command; yet you never gave me a kid that I might make merry with my friends. But when this son of yours came, who has devoured your living with harlots, you killed for him the fatted calf!’

And he said to him, ‘Son, you are always with me, and all that is mine is yours. It was fitting to make merry and be glad, for this your brother was dead, and is alive; he was lost, and is found.’”