St. Peter Newsletter June 11, 2019

The Fiftieth Day after Pascha
The Great Feast of Pentecost

Pentecost - The Descent of the Holy Spirit

Fifty days after the Resurrection, on the existing Jewish feast of Pentecost, while the disciples and many other followers of Jesus Christ were gathered together to pray, the Holy Spirit descended upon them in the form of “cloven tongues of fire,” with the sound of a mighty rushing wind, and they began to speak in languages that they did not know. There were many visitors from the Jewish diaspora to Jerusalem at that time for the Jewish observance of the feast, and they were astonished to hear these untaught fisherman speaking praises to God in their alien tongues. This account is detailed in the Acts of the Apostles, chapter 2.

The number fifty, as in the fiftieth day after Pascha, stands for eternal and heavenly fulfillment, seven times seven, plus one.

The Orthodox Church sees Pentecost as the final fulfillment of the mission of Jesus Christ and the first beginning of the messianic age of the Kingdom of God, mystically present in his Church. It is traditionally called the beginning of the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church.

Besides celebrating the coming of the Holy Spirit, the feast also celebrates the full revelation of the divine Trinity, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Hymns of the Church celebrate the sign of the final act of God’s self-disclosure to the world of His creation.

To Orthodox Christians, the feast of Pentecost is not just a celebration of an event in history. It is also a celebration their membership in the Church. They have lived Pentecost and received “the seal of the gift of the Holy Spirit” in the sacrament of chrismation.

Read more on the Orthodox Wikiwebsite.

Pentecost Prayers Immediately Following the Divine Liturgy

Pentecost Kneeling Prayers

Immediately following the Divine Liturgy we will read the Pentecost Prayers.

Why are we doing this? One reason is that Pentecost is a major feast day in our Church. Pentecost (the fifty days) is when the Holy Spirit descended on the disciples and then all the people in Jerusalem, the same Holy Spirit that Adam lost is restored through Jesus Christ (the Second Adam) and makes our salvation possible.

If Christ hung on a cross to make our salvation possible (and he did), then we can pray these prayers that have been given to us by our Fathers in order to receive Christ’s salvation more deeply. It takes discipline, but there is never any growth without discipline.

As the prayers are read. As you listen, absorb them. Let them sink in. Keep in mind what Fr. Hans taught about worship a few Sundays ago and embrace it through these prayers. You soul will experience a measure of reordering – of healing – that will become evident in the days ahead.

For those who cannot kneel to physical limitations, it is entirely appropriate to remain seated and both bow you head and “bow the knees of your heart” as scripture says. For those of us who can kneel, we should kneel.

Michael Strezev Accepted to Masters Music Program

Many of you know Michael, our parishioner from Moldavia. Michael makes his living playing the organ which is why you see him enter liturgy late on most Sundays. He plays for other churches.

Most don’t know that Michael is an accomplished organ player, one with great promise and talent. He was encouraged by a faculty member of the Eastman School of Music to audition there and was accepted into their Master’s program. He begins his studies in August. He needs to raise $20,000 plus living expenses.

Michael has been granted a scholarship that covers half of his expenses to start. A person associated with the Naples Philharmonic is arranging a fund raising concert to help him meet the second half of his expenses. Location and time will be announced. It would be could if those of us who can help him attend the concert in support of his goals.

If would also be good if anyone who could help him do so. My prayer is that the money comes in for Michael through both work and gifts and that he be able to complete this course of study in his fledgling career.

 

Fr. Hans Our of Town from Wednesday, June 12 to Saturday June 15, 2019

He will be attending the Parish Life Conference in Raleigh, North Carolina.

He will be available by cell phone – 239-24-4775

 

Father’s Day Barbecue on Sunday Following Pentecost Prayers

Here’s the menu:

  • Hot dogs
  • Hamburgers
  • Pulled pork bar BQ
  • — and all the sides that go with it!
 

Pledge Report – May 2019

In order to meet our operating Budget goal for 2019 we need to take in $16,666.00 each month.

Please pledge in order to meet our goal. Pledge forms are available on the table in the narthex.

 

Interfaith Charities Needs Our Help

Interfaith Charities Needs Our Help

Interfaith Charities, the local agency St. Peter’s partners with to help working poor families in our immediate area needs these items:

  • Rice
  • Lentils
  • Tuna
  • Mac and cheese
  • Soup
  • SpaghettiOs
  • Jelly
  • Used clothing
  • Used housewares

St. Peter’s is committed to helping the poor among us. If each family could bring some of these items to church this Sunday and the next, then we will get them to Interfaith Charities and the families who need them.

 

Icons Available in the Social Hall

Icons Available

St. Peter’s has a large selection of Icons available for sale and donation. They come in various sizes — mini, small, medium and large.

The Icons are generously donated by Theo Palis and therefore all proceeds go directly to St. Peter’s.

If there is a specific icon you are looking for and we don’t have it, Theo might be able to make it for you.

 

Bible Studies

Bible Studies resume on Wednesday, June 19.

 

Calendar At A Glance

JUNE

  • Wednesday-Saturday, Jun 12-15 — Parish Life Conference in NC. (Fr. Hans out of town)
  • Wednesday, Jun 12 — CANCELED Community Bible Study at 7:00pm (Fr. Hans out of town)
  • Thursday, Jun 13 — CANCELED St. Demetrios Brotherhood at 7:00pm (Fr. Hans out of town)
  • Sunday, Jun 16 — PENTECOST
  • Sunday, Jun 16 — Father’s Day Barbecue following Liturgy
  • Monday-Saturday, June 24-29 — St. Peter and Paul Fasting Period
  • Monday, Jun 24 — Divine Liturgy for Nativity of St. John the Baptist at 6:30pm
  • Wednesday, Jun 26 — Men’s/Women’s Bible Study at 7:00pm
  • Thursday, Jun 27 — St. Demetrios Brotherhood at 7:00pm
  • Saturday, June 29 — St. Peter and Paul Divine Liturgy at 6:30pm
 

Wisdom From The Elders

Since the Resurrection of the Lord is the ever-present event by which He enters into unlimited Communion with all mankind, we can conclude that this same mystery should become a concrete reality within the sphere of our social life. His Beatitude, Patriarch IGNATIUS IV

When someone has a vice we should try to bombard him with rays of love and compassion so that he may be cured and freed. These things are achieved only through the grace of God. Think that this person is suffering more than you. In a coenobitic monastery when someone is at fault we should not tell him that he is to blame. We must adopt an attitude of care, respect and prayer. We must endeavour not to do any­thing harmful. When we endure insults from our brother, it counts as martyrdom. And it is something we should endure with joy. Elder Porphyrios

God is everywhere. You decide if you are close to him or not. St. John Chrysostom

Our life depends on the kind of thoughts we nurture. If our thoughts are peaceful, calm, meek, and kind, then that is what our life is like. If our attention is turned to the circumstances in which we live, we are drawn into a whirlpool of thoughts and can have neither peace nor tranquility. Elder Thaddeus

Not only that: truth is truth; but if at some point you speak the truth without discernment, this is not truth. For example, it is true that so and so is mentally disturbed. But if you go and tell this truth you do not benefit anyone.
Elder Paisios of Mount Athos

 

Remember in Your Prayers

Mary
Jonathan
Alaina
Connie
Baby Luke
George
Priest Kyprianos
Presvytera Charlotte
Savannah (Jonson)
Bud
Silvana
Nicole
Evan
Megan
Bill R.
Pat R.
Aglaia
George
Hieromonk Serapion
Priest Kyprianos
Presvytera Charlotte
Bryan, Carolina, their unborn baby
Athanasia
Alexandra
Constantina
Maryanne (E)
Ron (E)
Tim
Robert (J)
Mary (J)
Patricia
Gregory
Doug Spencer
Kathy Spencer
Andreas
Sofia Tešanovic
Paul
Dennis H. and Family
Victor Evan
Ann
James
Vasiliki
Efstratia
Alexandra
Nikos
Georgia
Ioannis
Costandino
Jeffrey
Vaso
Dave
Dimitri – Presbyter
Vassiliki
Octavio
Tom
Carl
Rena
Nikolay (5 year old boy in Bulgaria whose parents asked us to pray)
David
Rosie
Kathryn
Jeremy
Constantine
Robert
Jane
Theodora
David
Gina
Micheal
Haralambos
Lillian
Presbytera Rosy
Valentina
Eva W.
Barbara
Angela
Carol Ann
Matthew
Chrysostom
Tim
Pat
Christina
Maria Louise
Maximos
Marian
Photini
Nicholas
Sarah
Constantine Houpis
Anna Marie Smith Baker
Katerina
Mary Kassis
Baby Maximus
Christine
Maria
Annette Star
Claire Livaditis
Eva Chandilles
Baby Dani
Scott Nedoff
James Hord
Tom

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

Epistle

Their voice has gone out into all the earth.
The heavens declare the glory of God.

The Reading from the Acts of the Apostles. (2:1-11)

When the day of Pentecost had come, the Disciples were all together in one place. And suddenly a sound came from heaven like the rush of a mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared to them tongues as of fire, distributed and resting on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance. Now there were dwelling in Jerusalem Jews, devout men from every nation under heaven. And at this sound the multitude came together, and they were bewildered, because each one heard them speaking in his own language. And they were amazed and wondered, saying, “Are not all these who are speaking Galileans? And how is it that we hear, each of us in his own native language? Parthians and Medes and Elamites and residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya belonging to Cyrene, and visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes, Cretans and Arabians, we hear them telling in our own tongues the mighty works of God.”

Gospel

The Reading from the Holy Gospel according to St. John. (7:37-52; 8:12)

On the last day of the feast, the great day, Jesus stood up and proclaimed, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.’” Now this He said about the Spirit, which those who believed in Him were to receive; for as yet the Spirit had not been given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.

When they heard these words, many of the people said, “This is really the prophet.” Others said, “This is the Christ.” But some said, “Is the Christ to come from Galilee? Has not the Scripture said that the Christ is descended from David, and comes from Bethlehem, the village where David was?” So there was a division among the people over Him. Some of them wanted to arrest Him, but no one laid hands on Him. The officers then went back to the chief priests and Pharisees, who said to them, “Why did you not bring Him?” The officers answered, “No man ever spoke like this man!” The Pharisees answered them, “Are you led astray, you also? Have any of the authorities or the Pharisees believed in Him? But this crowd, who do not know the Law, are accursed.”

Nicodemus, who had gone to Him before, and who was one of them, said to them, “Does our Law judge a man without first giving him a hearing and learning what he does?” They replied, “Are you from Galilee too? Search and you will see that no prophet is to rise from Galilee.” Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”

St. Peter Orthodox Church