St. Peter Newsletter June 14, 2016 — Pentecost

The Fiftieth Day after Pascha
The Great Feast of Pentecost

The Descent of the Holy Spirit

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 Wiki.

Pentecost Kneeling Prayers Follow Divine Liturgy

Pentecost Kneeling Prayers

Immediately following the Divine Liturgy on Sunday June, 19, we will read the Kneeling Prayers for Pentecost. These prayers invoke the Holy Spirit to be with us.

These are kneeling prayers. 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.

Pentecost/Father’s Day Luncheon Sunday, June 19

barbecue

Mark you calendars for June 19 for a Pentecost/Father’s Day Luncheon following Divine Liturgy and the Pentecost Prayers.

The luncheon will begin following the Pentecost Kneeling Prayers after Divine Liturgy.

The menu includes souvlaki and other items.

Please RSVP on the website.

Choir Practice Resumes Wednesday, June 15, 2016

We will practice the hymns of Pentecost.

Bible Study Cancelled Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Fr. Hans will be out of town.

Fr. Hans Out of Town Tuesday Through Saturday, June 14-18

He will be giving two lectures at the Acton Institute in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Fr. Hans is available by cell phone.

Andrew and Kyriaki Baptism Gallery

Congratulations to Andrew and Kyriaki Fogeron on their baptism last Saturday, June 4. Pictures of the beautiful event are available on the website.

Orthodox Wisdom

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

Remember in Your Prayers

Maria Karela

Anthony Mourgis

John Simon

John Hansen

Constandina James

Peter Wouralis

Sia Wouralis

James Hord

Bob Smith

Tom and Jean, parents of Patty and Jerry.

How should we pray for the sick? Remember them daily. Say their names and ask God to bestow mercy and grace on them.

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.”