SAINT JOHN THE BAPTIST RUSSIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH

October at St. John's...........

Sep 30, 2022
October at St. John's...........

A creepy story for October. A priest was called to exorcise a bad spirit dwelling in the soul and body of a woman. He asked the spirit how did you enter this woman. The spirit replied that he just went in a door that was opened to him. “Really,” asked the priest. “What door is that?” The evil spirit laughed and said, “there are three doors to your soul and one of them was opened and I entered. Puzzled, the priest asked, “what doors are you talking about?” The evil spirit explained , “There are three doors to everyone, one is unforgiveness, one is hatred and the most important one is fear. This woman had all three doors ajar and so I just picked one and entered with no problem.” A creepy tale for October, a beautiful month filled with colored leaves, cool nights and sunny warm days.

 

 

However, this creepy tale was told by a woman who professed to have had the evil spirit and was healed by the power of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Whether you believe this story or not, is up to you, but we seem to be inundated with evil events all over the news, on tv or in the papers, and even sometimes in our daily activities. Years ago, I remember a sermon given by our rector at that time who stated that the devils are sleeping outside the bars but they are very busy in churches and in our daily living. There is something in the air and its not just cool weather and pretty trees.

 

 

The first door mentioned in our creepy tale is of unforgiveness. To keep this door securely closed, our Lord tells Peter how important it is to be forgiving. Read Matthew 18:21-22: “Then Peter came up and said to Him, "Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? As many as seven times?" Jesus said to him, "I do not say to you seven times, but seventy times seven.” We are also reminded daily by our Lord’s Prayer the following: “And forgive us our debts, As we also have forgiven our debtors; And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father also will forgive you; but if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. (Matt 6:12-15) This is not very complicated. No descriptions or qualifications follow.

 

 

The second door mentioned is committed to hatred. Scripture tells us: "You shall not hate your brother in your heart, and you shall reason with your neighbor, lest you bear sin because of him. (Lev 19:17-18) Hatred brings sin upon one’s self which then causes a person to bear this responsibility and to atone for his feelings. "But I say to you that hear, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you.” (Luke 6:27-29) This Bible verse is a special law of Christianity, and the highest possible test of piety, and probably the most difficult of all duties to perform.

 

 

The third door and perhaps the most important is fear. In the book of Job, Job says: “Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom; and to depart from evil is understanding. (Job 28:28) Our fear is because we sin and offend God. Understanding means we must first cease to sin, or we shall never learn to do well. However, God’s love, Agape is creative and sacrificial love. The Cross of Christ stands as the highest manifestation of God’s love for man. “There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and he who fears is not perfected in love. We love, because He first loved us.” (1 John 4:18-20) Again we read: Ps 46:1-2  “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear though the earth should change, though the mountains shake in the heart of the sea.” Isaiah in chapter 41, verse 10 tells us: “ fear not, for I am with you, be not dismayed, for I am your God;” Jesus, Himself speaks: “…. Jesus said to the ruler of the synagogue, "Do not fear, only believe.” (Mark 5:36-37) In truth, God loves us more than we can comprehend and this understanding should dispel any fears we have.

 


Happy Birthday to all those celebrating their birthday in October including: Daniel Kary and Marie Baron on Oct. 10; Elena Kibitelsky, Oct. 12; Anna Rozanovich, Oct. 15; Dennis Maixner Oct. 21; Helena Czech Oct. 22; Lauren Silvestre Oct. 25; John Kary Oct. 28; and Elizabeth Hatsko on Oct. 30. May God grant each of them a very Happy Birthday and Many Years!

 

 

On behalf of St. John’s, Helen Baron, our Food Pantry Coordinator, would like to thank you all for your contributions. God grant you all Many Years! Thanksgiving is just around the corner! Many stores have special fall sales that are worth looking into for non-perishable foods (canned or packaged) to help fill our baskets for our less fortunate neighbors.

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Great Vespers - 5:00 PM

Come let us rejoice in the Lord!  Let us make a joyful noise to God our Savior!  Let us come before His face with thanksgiving; let us make a joyful noise to Him with songs of praise!    (Alleluia Vereses)