St. Peter Newsletter November 8, 2016 — St. John Chrysostom, A Personal Call to Holiness, Helping NAMI

Eighth Sunday of Luke Sunday
St. John Chrysostom, archbishop of Constantinople

St. John Chrysostom Interpreting Epistles of Paul

St. John Chrysostom Interpreting Epistles of Paul

He was born in Antioch of noble parents: his father was a high-ranking military officer. His father died soon after his birth and so he was brought up by his mother Anthusa. He was baptized in 370 and tonsured a reader (one of the minor orders of the Church). He began his education under a pagan teacher named Libanius, but went on to study theology under Diodore of Tarsus (one of the leaders of the later Antiochian School) while practising extreme asceticism. He was not satisfied, however, and became a hermit (circa 375) and remained so until poor health forced a return to Antioch.

He was then ordained a deacon in 381 by St. Meletius of Antioch, and was ordained a presbyter in 386 by Bishop Flavian I of Antioch. It seems this was the happiest period of his life. Over about twelve years, he gained much popularity for the eloquence of his public speaking. Notable are his insightful expositions of Bible passages and moral teaching. The most valuable of his works are his Homilies on various books of the Bible. He particularly emphasized almsgiving. He was also most concerned with the spiritual and temporal needs of the poor. He spoke out against abuse of wealth and personal property. In many respects, the following he amassed was no surprise. His straightforward understanding of the Scriptures (in contrast to the Alexandrian tendency towards allegorical interpretation) meant that the themes of his talks were eminently social, explaining the Christian’s conduct in life.

[…]

St. John was fearless when denouncing offences in high places. An alliance was soon formed against him by Eudoxia, Theophilus and other enemies of his. They held a synod in 403 to charge John, in which the accusation of Origenism was used against him. It resulted in his deposition and banishment. He was called back by Arcadius almost immediately, however, for the people of the city were very angry about his departure. There was also a “quaking” in the Imperial bedroom (thought to be either an actual earthquake or perhaps as a stillbirth or miscarriage for the empress) which was seen as a sign of God’s anger. Peace was shortlived. A silver statue of Eudoxia was erected near the cathedral of Hagia Sophia. John denounced the dedication ceremonies. He spoke against her in harsh terms: “Again Herodias rages; again she is confounded; again she demands the head of John on a charger” (an allusion to the events surrounding the death of John the Forerunner). Once again he was banished, this time to Caucasus in Georgia.

The pope in Rome (Innocent I at this time) protested at this banishment, but to no avail. John wrote letters which still held great influence in Constantinople. As a result of this, he was further exiled to Pityus (on the eastern edge of the Black Sea). However, he never reached this destination, as he died during the journey. His final words were “Glory be to God for all things!”

Read the entire biography on the Orthodoxwiki website.

 

St. Peter’s First Annual Christmas Lent Retreat
Saturday, November 12, 9am-3pm

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All of us are called to a life of holiness through a life of prayer, fasting, almsgiving and manual labor. And, for all of us, monastic life remains for us the touchstone for what it means to live life in Christ.

Asceticism and monasticism can help us live as disciples of Christ. The good will and the hunger for a deeper, more personal spiritual life is there. The challenge, for all of us, is making the connection between our heart's desire and the tradition so that we can draw close to Christ.

We will discuss two very different understandings of freedom: freedom of choice and freedom from sin. Our culture emphasizes the first, the tradition of the Church the second. The personal question we must ask is what kind of freedom do we desire?

Get complete information on St. Peter’s website.

May Their Memory Be Eternal

May Their Memory Be Eternal

Upcoming Memorials at St. Peter's include:

  • Sunday, November 13: John Spiropoulos (12 years) – father of Joan Simon by John and Joan Simon
  • Sunday, December 4: Bea (Panagiota) Chionis (40 days) by husband George and the entire Chionis family.
 

Christmas Season Food Drive for NAMI

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Every Christmas season St. Peter’s runs a food drive for NAMI (National Association for Mental Illness)serving local people in need. NAMI helps people with serious and persistent mental illnesses, as well as their parents, children, spouses, siblings and friends.

St. Peter’s has contributed to NAMI emergency food bank care for six years. Donations go to the Sarah Ann Drop In Center in Naples, FL. Three categories of items are needed:

  1. Canned and dry goods
  2. Toiletry articles (The small hotel type items work very well)
  3. Diabetic foods

Bring them to church and we will get them to NAMI. The drive will run through Christmas.

Women’s Group CANCELLED in November

The Women’s Group meeting schedule for Thursday, November 17 is CANCELLED. We will attending the Christmas Lent Retreat on Saturday, November 12. Please plan to attend!

Events This Fall

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As we enter into the new Ecclesiastical Year, St. Peter's will hold at least one monthly parish social event. Please mark you calendars.

  • November 12-13 (Saturday and Sunday) Christmas Lent Retreat with Fr. Gregory Jensen on "Aceticism, Monasticism, and Christian Discipleship." Fr. Gregory will speak on our calling and vocation as Christians and how to live it especially in the Church.
  • December 3 (Saturday – 6pm) Christmas pot luck

More details as we move closer to the dates.

 

Choir Practice on Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Choir practice this Tuesday, November 8, 2016.

Bible Study on Wednesday, November 16, 2016 at 7pm

Bible study also this Wednesday, November 9, 2016 at 7pm..

Calendar At A Glance

Choir Practice every Tuesday at 6:00pm and Bible Study every Wednesday at 7:00pm unless cancelled as noted below. Divine Liturgy every Sunday at 9:30. Extra services noted below.

  • November 12 (Saturday/Sunday) Christmas Lent Retreat
  • November 15 (Thursday) Women’s Group Meeting CANCELLED
  • December 3 (Saturday) Christmas Pot Luck
  • December 4 (Sunday) Memorial Bea Chionis
 

Wisdom From The Elders

Mercy is the fruit of the purest and firmest peace, when no passions arouse the soul and nothing prevents it from being filled with mercy and a sacrifice of praise.
—Archbishop Averky

As to members of the Holy Orthodox Church living in districts beyond the reach of Orthodox Catholic clergy, I direct that the ancient custom of our Holy Church be observed, namely, in cases of extreme necessity, that is, danger of death, children may be baptized by some pious Orthodox layman, or even by the parent of the child, by immersion three times in the names of the (persons of the) Blessed Trinity, and in case of death such baptism is valid: — but, if the child should live, it must be brought to an Orthodox priest for the Sacrament of Chrismation.
—St. Raphael of Brooklyn

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.
—St. Ephraim the Syrian

God, Who is by nature good and dispassionate, loves all men equally as His handiwork. But He glorifies the virtuous man because in his will he is united to God. At the same time, in His goodness he is merciful to the sinner and by chastising him in this life brings him back to the path of virtue. Similarly, a man of good and dispassionate judgment also loves all men equally. He loves the virtuous man because of his nature and the probity of his intention; and he loves the sinner, too, because of his nature and because in his compassion he pities him for foolishly stumbling in darkness.
—St. Maximos the Confessor

The intellect in a pure, devout soul truly sees God the unbegotten, invisible and ineffable, Who is the sole purity in the pure of heart.
—St. Anthony the Great

 

Remember in Your Prayers

Marian
Photini
Nicholas
Brad William
Ryan
Sarah
Robert Jarvis
Petronia (Wife of Phil Pappas)
Anna Marie Smith Baker
Harry Zifiris
Iris Kuring (Bettina Zifiris' mother)
Constantine Houpis
Gerhard Kuring (Bettina Zifiris' father)
Ron Chromulak
Beverly Chromulak
Katerina
Dianne
Loucine Kassis
Mary Kassis
Baby Maximus
Annette Star
Christine
Maria
Claire Livaditis
Eva Chandilles
Baby Dani
Scott Nedoff
Anthony Mourgis
John Hansen
Constandina James
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 (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

For St. John Chrysostom

My mouth shall speak of wisdom; and the meditation of my heart shall be of understanding.
Hear this, all ye people.

The Reading from the Epistle of St. Paul to the Hebrews. (7:26-8:2)

Brethren, it was fitting that we should have such a High Priest, holy, blameless, unstained, separated from sinners, exalted above the heavens. He has no need, like those high priests, to offer sacrifices daily, first for his own sins and then for those of the people; He did this once for all when He offered up Himself. Indeed, the law appoints men in their weakness as high priests, but the word of the oath, which came later than the law, appoints a Son Who has been made perfect forever. Now the point in what we are saying is this: we have such a High Priest, one Who is seated at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in heaven, a minister in the sanctuary and the true tent which is set up not by man but by the Lord.

Gospel

For the Eighth Sunday of Luke

The Reading from the Holy Gospel according to St. Luke. (10:25-37)

At that time, a lawyer stood up to put Jesus to the test, saying, “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” Jesus said to him, “What is written in the Law? How do you read?” And the lawyer answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.” And Jesus said to him, “You have answered right; do this, and you will live.”

But the lawyer, desiring to justify himself, said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” Jesus replied, “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and he fell among robbers, who stripped him and beat him, and departed, leaving him half dead. Now by chance a priest was going down that road; and when he saw him he passed by on the other side. So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. But a Samaritan, as he journeyed, came to where he was; and when he saw him, he had compassion, and went to him and bound up his wounds, pouring on oil and wine; then he set him on his own beast and brought him to an inn, and took care of him. And the next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper, saying, ‘Take care of him; and whatever more you spend, I will repay you when I come back.’ Which of these three, do you think, proved neighbor to the man who fell among the robbers?” The lawyer said, “The one who showed mercy on him.” And Jesus said to him, “Go and do likewise.”