Pray with Perseverance
When you pray, think about the words you are praying (assuming you are reading the prayers of the Church – the written ones). It may be a struggle (prayer often is), but it is within the struggle that the good happens. Just stay with it.
The fruit of that struggle will manifest itself throughout the day. The day will be filled with more light no matter what the tasks and difficulties that day might bring.
Don’t worry if you don’t feel much during prayer (joy, elation, even peace sometimes). Just persevere. A race is won only through perseverance. But you are created to win. Don’t forget that.
If you struggle through the prayers of the Church, you will find that the struggle jump starts your own prayers as well.
People will come to your mind. Pray for them. When you bring their name to God and ask for his blessing on them, the storehouses of heaven open in ways hard to comprehend but often easy to see.
If you are suffering and praying for others, especially when you pray through the pain of your suffering, your prayers are especially strong. They reach God with particular resonance and clarity that has great effect towards the people you are praying for.
Parish Christmas Card
Sign up for the parish Christmas Card. It is a great way to send Christmas greetings to all parishioners in one easy swoop. It is a great way to support your Church too.
Kindly download and print the information form here. Fill it in and bring it to Church.
Or if you prefer you can fill out the form and make your donation online.
Reverence When We enter the Church
Soon when you enter the Church on Sunday you will notice something different. You will hear the Hours being read.
The Hours are Psalms and Prayers that are read throughout the day. The Orthodox discipline which is followed daily in monasteries and some Orthodox follow in privately is to read the First, Third, Sixth, and Ninth hour prayers throughout the day.
- First Hour corresponds to daybreak (6:00 a.m.).
- Third Hour corresponds to mid-morning (9:00 a.m.)
- Sixth Hour corresponds to mid-day (12:00 noon)
- Ninth Hour corresponds to mid-afternoon (3:00 p.m.)
We will read the First and Third Hours before every Sunday Liturgy.
What does this mean in practical terms? It means that when we arrive at Church and hear the chanter reading the Hours. that worship has already begun.
We need to enter the Church quietly and with prayerful hearts and pray along with the chanter to prepare for the Liturgy which is to follow.
Remember in Your Prayers
Please pray for Pauline Poulos who is recovering from heart bypass surgery. You can send her a card at:
1338 Alkazar Ave.
Ft. Myers, Fl. 33901
Please continue your prayers for Pat and Milam Evanoff. Milam is unable to make it to Church.
Bob and Jane Smith will be joining us soon when Bob has all his medical appointments completed.
Prayer is very powerful and changes situations and circumstances. God hears your prayers.
On December 5-7, 2014, His Emminence Met. Joseph will be enthroned as the Metropolitan of the Antiochian Archdiocese of America in Brooklyn, New York.
From the Antiochian Archdiocese:
It is with great pleasure that we announce that the events related to the Enthronement of His Eminence Metropolitan Joseph will take place during the weekend of December 5 through 7, 2014, at St. Nicholas Cathedral in Brooklyn, New York. The actual enthronement will take place in conjunction with Vespers on Saturday, December 6.
We will be greatly blessed by the presence of His Beatitude John X, Patriarch of Antioch and All the East, who will preside during this weekend.
Complete information, including travel arrangements, can be found on the Antiochian Archdiocese website.
The Sunday Scripture Readings
The Gospel Reading
(For St. Matthew)
The Reading from the Holy Gospel according to St. Matthew. (9:9-13)
At that time, as Jesus passed on from there, He saw a man called Matthew sitting at the tax office; and He said to him, “Follow Me.” And he rose and followed Him.
And as He sat at table in the house, behold, many tax collectors and sinners came and sat down with Jesus and His disciples.
And when the Pharisees saw this, they said to His disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?” But when Jesus heard it, He said, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. Go and learn what this means, ‘I desire mercy, and not sacrifice.’ For I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”
The Epistle Reading
(For St. Matthew)
His voice has gone out into all the earth. The heavens declare the glory of God.
The Reading from the First Epistle of St. Paul to the Corinthians. (4:9-16)
Brethren, God has exhibited us Apostles as last of all, like men sentenced to death; because we have become a spectacle to the world, to angels and to men. We are fools for Christ’s sake, but you are wise in Christ. We are weak, but you are strong. You are held in honor, but we in disrepute.
To the present hour we hunger and thirst, we are ill-clad and buffeted and homeless, and we labor, working with our own hands. When reviled, we bless; when persecuted, we endure; when slandered, we try to conciliate; we have become, and are now, as the refuse of the world, the off-scouring of all things.
I do not write this to make you ashamed, but to admonish you as my beloved children. For though you have countless guides in Christ, you do not have many fathers. For I became your father in Christ Jesus through the Gospel. I urge you, then, be imitators of me.