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St. Peter Newsletter January 21, 2020

Thirty-second Sunday of Pentecost
Fifteenth Sunday of Luke (“Zacchaeus”)

Venerable Xenophon, his wife, Mary, and their two sons, Arkadios and John, of Constantinople; Translation of the relics of Venerable Theodore the Studite

The Sunday of Zacchaeus

The Sunday of Zacchaeus

The Apostle Zacchaeus was a rich publican at Jericho. Since he was short of stature, he climbed a sycamore tree in order to see the Savior passing by. After the Ascension of the Lord, St. Zacchaeus accompanied St. Peter on his travels. Tradition says he followed St. Peter to Caesarea, where Peter appointed him the Bishop of Caesarea in Palestine. He died in peace.

The Sunday of Zacchaeus is also the first warning that Lent is around the corner. It is time to prepare ourselves for the coming of Lent. Start thinking about it now.

Read the complete story on the Orthodoxwiki website.


Who Were Venerable Xenophon, his wife, Mary, and their two sons, Arcadius and John, of Constantinople?

The Sunday of Zacchaeus

Venerable Xenophon, his wife, Mary, and their two sons, Arcadius and John, of Constantinople

Saint Xenophon, his wife Maria, and their sons Arcadius and John, were noted citizens of Constantinople and lived in the fifth century. Despite their riches and position, they distinguished themselves by their simplicity of soul and goodness of heart. Wishing to give their sons John and Arcadius a more complete education, they sent them off to the Phoenician city of Beirut.

By divine Providence the ship on which both brothers sailed was wrecked. The waves tossed the brothers ashore at different places. Grieved at being separated, the brothers dedicated themselves to God and became monks. For a long time the parents had no news of their children and presumed them to be dead.

Xenophon, however, already quite old, maintained a firm hope in the Lord and consoled his wife Maria, telling her not to be sad, but to believe that the Lord watched over their children. After several years the couple made a pilgrimage to the holy places, and at Jerusalem they met their sons, living in asceticsm at different monasteries. The joyful parents gave thanks to the Lord for reuniting the family.

Saints Xenophon and Maria went to separate monasteries and dedicated themselves to God. The monks Arcadius and John, having taken leave of their parents, went out into the wilderness, where after long ascetic toil they were glorified by gifts of wonderworking and discernment. Saints Xenophon and Maria, laboring in silence and strict fasting, also received from God the gift of wonderworking.

Source: Orthodox Church in America website.


House Blessings Continue!


To sign up for house blessings please text Fr. Hans at 239-248-4775 with some available dates and times that work, or send an email to, or sign up in the Social Hall. Fr. Hans will call you to set up the appointment.

If you call there is a good chance I cannot pick up, and if I am in the car I cannot write down the information anyway. That’s why texting is preferred.


Greek Language Classes Begin Next Week

TUESDAYS at 5:00pm
January 2 – March 24
$30 per person for 8 weeks

WEDNESDAYS at 5:30pm
January 29 – March 25
$55 per person for 8 weeks

WEDNESDAYS at 4:30pm
(Assumes basic knowledge of Greek language)
January 29 – March 25
$55 per person for 8 weeks

Please make checks payable for full amount of 8-week class to St. Peter Orthodox Church. NOTE: Greek School on Memo line of check. Classes meet at the Church.

If you have any questions, contact JOAN SIMON at 201-826-8991.


Mark You Calendar! Valentine’s Day Party on February 15, 2020

Valentine's Day party on February 15, 2020


DATE: Saturday, February 15
TIME: 5:00pm
WHERE: St. Peter’s Fellowship Hall
RSVP: Tina Kucera at 239-980-1520 along with the Covered Dish you can prepare

Live Entertainment from 6:30pm to 8:30pm! Dance to you favorite sounds from the 50s, 60s, and 70s!


Women of St. Peter’s: Women’s Retreat On Saturday, March 7, 2020

Women's Retreat

WOMEN OF ST PETER: It’s our turn to sponsor the annual Lenten Retreat to be held at St. Peter’s on Saturday, March 7. We have invited a guest speaker, Fr. Alexis Kouri of St. Philip’s Orthodox Church in Davie, Florida, and we want to it to be a successful event.

If you can help with the event, please contact Mary Copeland or Nancy Forderhase to volunteer. We need to provide a light breakfast and lunch for the event, and there are numerous other “chores” to ensure that it’s a successful effort.

Please plan to attend this one day retreat. It’s a perfect way to begin the “Lenten Journey” and it will end early in the afternoon. We want to support this effort with a strong showing from the Women of St. Peter’s. We are asking for a $10 contribution to pay for the food expenses.


Our Stewardship to St. Peter’s


Click to view the letter

The letter for Stewardship Support of St. Peter’s in 2020 has been sent.

We are responsible to increase what God has given us. In the Parable of the Talents, the master gave his servants talents that they are expected to nurture and grow. This is a responsibility we cannot avoid.

The Church is both a place where the increase begins on the inside of us, and to which we much give some our increase. This too is a responsibility we must take on.

A contribution form will be included in the letter you receive. Our goal this year is $217,000.


Upcoming Liturgies

The Three Hierarchs on Thursday, January 30, 2020 at 9:30am

The Three Holy Hierarchs

Saturday of the Souls on Saturday, February 22, 2020 at 9:30am

Saturday of the Souls

Saturday of the Souls on Saturday, February 29, 2020 at 9:30am

Saturday of the Souls

Pledge & Income Report – December 2019

Thank you to all of you who support Saint Peter’s. The final 2019 donation totalsare in and we have met our expenses. In fact, we were a little bit ahead for theyear.

Our December income was $17,822 and as you know, our expenses are $16,777so we were $1,045 ahead.

We ask that you all continue your generous giving spirit as our 2020 expenses willbe going up due to increase in rent.


Calendar At A Glance


  • Tue-Sat Jan 22-25 — Miami Diocese Retreat in Atlanta. Fr. Hans out of town
  • Mon-Wed Jan 27-29 — Fr. Hans out town
  • Thu Jan 30 — Three Hierarchs Divine Liturgy 9:30am


  • Wed-Sat Feb 5-8 — Fr. Hans Out of Town
  • Mon Feb 10 — St. Haramlabos Divine Liturgy 9:30am
  • Sat Feb 15 — Valentine’s Day Party (Time and details TBA)
  • Sat Feb 22 — Saturday of the Souls Divine Liturgy 9:30am
  • Sat-Sun Feb 22 — St. Paul (Naples) Founders Day
  • Sat Feb 29 — Saturday of the Souls Divine Liturgy 9:30am

Please note the extra remaining liturgies scheduled for January/February:

  • Thu Jan 30 — Three Hierarchs Divine Liturgy 9:30am
  • Mon Feb 10 — St. Haramlabos Divine Liturgy 9:30am
  • Sat Feb 22 — Saturday of the Souls Divine Liturgy 9:30am
  • Sat Feb 29 — Saturday of the Souls Divine Liturgy 9:30am


  • Sat Mar 7 — Sts. Peter/Paul Women’s Retreat

Wisdom From The Elders

Awareness of sin is a result of love and humility, while unawareness is a result of pride and hardness of heart.
St. Ignatius Brianchaninov

The more a man leads the spiritual life, the more he becomes is spiritualised: he begins to see God in everything; the manifestation of His power and might in everything; he sees himself always and everywhere abiding in God, and depending from God even in the smallest matters. Righteous John, Wonderworker of Kronstadt

Therefore, whether you call upon the Lord Himself, or His Mother, or the angels, or saints, call upon them with all your heart; whether you pray for anyone living or departed, pray for them with your whole heart, pronouncing their names with heartfelt fervor. Righteous John, Wonderworker of Kronstadt

Man is placed on the road between paradise and hell, between God and Satan. Every thought and reflection of man, and every feeling of this, brings the soul one step closer to paradise or one step closer to hell. Venerable Justin (Popovic) of Chelije in Serbia

Therefore be sure that every prayer that is not fulfilled is certainly harmful; but a prayer that is answered is beneficial. The Giver of gifts is just and good and will not leave your prayers unanswered, for in His goodness there is no malice and in His truth there is no envy. Venerable Ephraim the Syrian

The only feeling that is left in me now is joy—an ineffable joy has taken over my entire being.” I told him that he had been given the gift of Grace and that he would have it for as long as he could keep his thoughts away from the cares of this world. If he were to do that [i.e., return his thought to the cares of the world], I told him, he would stop hearing the words of the Jesus Prayer in his heart, and then the joy and peace would gradually disappear from his heart. Elder Thaddeus(Strabulovich) of Vitovnica


Remember in Your Prayers

Macy James
Joan (Breitenbach)
Mary (Rauch)
Warren (BAND)
Joseph (Breitenbach)
Diomidis (Kanellos)

Anastasia (Ann Constan)
Ben (Ben)
Thomas (Ben)
Irene (C. Diveris)
Vasiliki (C.Diveris)
Efrosini (C. diveris)
Charles (Oberg)
Christine (Kouzes)
Nina (Kovalev)
Hugh (Jacquie)
Violet (Jacquie Mom)
Tammie (Jacquie friend)
Baby Luke
Priest Kyprianos
Savannah (Jonson)
Bill R.
Pat R.
Hieromonk Serapion
Priest Kyprianos
Maryanne (E)
Ron (E)
Robert (J)
Mary (J)
Sofia Tešanovic
Dennis H. and Family
Victor Evan
Dimitri – Presbyter
Nikolay (5 year old boy in Bulgaria whose parents asked us to pray)
Presbytera Rosy
Eva W.
Carol Ann
Maria Louise
Constantine Houpis
Anna Marie Smith Baker
Mary Kassis
Baby Maximus
Annette Star
Claire Livaditis
Eva Chandilles
Baby Dani
Scott Nedoff
James Hord

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 Thirty-second 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 St. Timothy. (4:9-15)

Timothy, my son, the saying is sure and worthy of full acceptance. For to this end we toil and strive, because we have our hope set on the living God, Who is the Savior of all men, especially of those who believe. Command and teach these things. Let no one despise your youth, but set the believers an example in speech and conduct, in love, in faith, in purity. Until I come, attend to the public reading of scripture, to preaching, to teaching. Do not neglect the gift you have, which was given you by prophetic utterance when the council of elders laid their hands upon you. Practice these duties; devote yourself to them, so that all may see your progress.



For the Fifteenth Sunday of Luke — “Zacchaeus”

The reading from the Holy Gospel according to St. Luke. (19:1-10)At that time, Jesus entered Jericho and was passing through. And there was a man named Zacchaeus; he was a chief tax collector, and rich. And he sought to see Who Jesus was, but could not, on account of the crowd, because he was small of stature. So he ran on ahead and climbed up into a sycamore tree to see Jesus, for He was to pass that way. And when Jesus came to the place, He looked up and said to him, “Zacchaeus, make haste and come down; for I must stay at your house today.” So he made haste and came down, and received Him joyfully. And when they saw it they all murmured, “He has gone in to be the guest of a man who is a sinner.” And Zacchaeus stood and said to the Lord, “Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have defrauded anyone of anything, I restore it fourfold.” And Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, since he also is a son of Abraham; for the Son of man came to seek and to save the lost.”

St. Peter Orthodox Church