August 2020 at St. John's.........

Jul 27, 2020
August 2020 at St. John's.........

The reading from the Epistle of the Holy Apostle Paul to the Romans. (Rom. 15:1-7) “Brethren, we then who are strong ought to bear with the scruples of the weak, and not to please ourselves. Let each of us please his neighbor for his good, leading to edification. For even Christ did not please Himself; but as it is written, "The reproaches of those who reproached You fell on Me." For whatever things were written before, were written for our learning, that we through the patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope. Now may the God of patience and comfort grant you to be like-minded toward one another, according to Christ Jesus, that you may with one mind and one mouth glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore receive one another, just as Christ also received us, to the glory of God.”


The message from St. John’s for August was published in the bulletin for July 26, and follows: In today’s epistle reading it says, “Accept each other, as Christ accepted you, to the glory of God.” This was St. Paul’s finishing point as he wrote about how each of us should please our neighbors first, not ourselves first. He especially pointed out that Christ Jesus did not please Himself, but took on our reproaches as the Bible prophesied. What does it mean to accept each other as Christ accepted us? This may seem like a strange question, but some people interpret it to mean that we should be accommodating to an extreme. They may even interpret it to involve an acceptance of lawlessness or immorality. But the last phrase answers this question: to the glory of God. We are to accept our neighbors to the glory of God.


It is not for the glory of our opinions or for the glory of a cause. Christ died for our sins and so we too should guide others to repent. This doesn‘t mean that we should accept the sins of others. God doesn’t accept sins; He often stands against them, which causes some people to hate Him and demonize Him. Christ was demonized and His disciples were also demonized. But the Holy Spirit’s non-acceptance of sins and falsity isn’t a work of demonizing sinners. The Bible teaches that everyone on earth is created by God and has a conscience. Refusing to Accept what goes against God is what we are created to do. So we should accept our neighbors as sinners, just as Christ accepted us. And we should remember that we too are sinners, which helps us not to demonize, as if we are superior.


As Christ gently heals our souls, so should we heal others. And as St. Paul says in this passage, when we imitate this spirit of Christ, we can glorify God in one mind. Christ’s unity comes from this mind of seeking to please others first. And this is because human glory fades away, but what is from the Holy Spirit stays forever.


Many thanks go to Mrs. Helen Margitich for her recent generous gift of a Plaschanitza for the Dormition of the Mother of God to our church in blessed memory of her beloved parents Nikolas and Anna Pruzinsky and her husband George Margitich. We thank her most sincerely for her generosity and may God bless her and all her family. “Give rest, O Lord, to the souls of Thy servants and establish them in Paradise where the Choirs of the Saints and of the just, O Lord, shine like the stars of heaven.” Memory Eternal to Nikolas and Anna Pruzinsky and George Margitich.


Happy Birthday to all those celebrating their birthday in August: Nicholas Bzik, August 2; Cathy Lazorchak, August 10; Gregory Kary on August 12; Patricia Galley, August 14; Marilyn Stagen, August 15, Samuel Czech, August 17;  Peter Czech, August 22;  Andrea Shaker on August 26, and Archbishop’s Michael's Birthday on August 28. Happy Birthday to all who are celebrating their birthday in August and God grant all of you Many Years!


During the month of August, Fr. Maryan will continue, with Mat. Svetlana, to live stream the Akathist to St. John the Baptist each Tuesday morning from the rectory and a Moleben to the Theotokos each Friday morning as well.  These services start at 9:00 a.m and can be viewed from our facebook page. Also in the month of August we are in the Dormition Fast that started on August 1 and will continue until the feast of the Dormition of the Most Holy Theotokos on August 15.  Herbs and flowers will be blessed by Fr. Maryan following this important service. Parish Confessions will be heard immediately following Great Vespers on August 8.  On August 6, Divine Liturgy will be served at 9:30 a.m. for the sacred feast of the Transfiguration.   Following this service, Fr. Maryan will bless fruit brought to church by the attendees.  Please do not include bananas. At the end of the month, on August 29, is the commemoration of the Beheading of St. John the Baptist.  Divine Liturgy will be served again at 9:30 a.m. This day is a strict fast in honor of St. John, our patron saint, who endured this sad and tragic end.  A calendar on this website lists all these services and you can print out a copy to remind you to attend.


We can now worship together again. However, due to social distancing, we are limited to 55 parishioners in the church, but do not let that number frighten you. We are still below the requirements and you will not be turned away.  Also, to minimize any risk, there will not be a coffee hour following Divine Liturgy.  Please inform Fr. Maryan if you, a family member or any other parishioner is hospitalized.  By doing so, Father can schedule a visit. Thank you for your assistance in this matter. Please remember our Food Pantry and our neighbors who have need of the help; and have a safe and happy Vacation, but remember to attend church where you are!


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