SAINT JOHN THE BAPTIST RUSSIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH

September at St. John's..........

Sep 1, 2021
September at St. John's..........

The Theotokos, is the most important woman in the New Testament and the Nativity of the Theotokos is one of the Great Feasts of the Orthodox Church and is commemorated on September 8. Mary her name, seems to have been as popular with Hebrew families in the first century BC as it is in the Western world today. At the age of three, Joachim and Anna, her elderly parents offered her to God, and gave her into the hands of prophet Zacharia, the high-priest at that time at the temple of Solomon, and later to be the father of the Honored Forerunner. The Entrance of the Theotokos into the Temple is celebrated on November 21st.

 

She remained at the Temple until she became 15. We know that she spoke Aramaic, Christ’s mother tongue. When she was in her teens, her betrothal was arranged by her family and the family of Joseph, a descendant of King David and by trade a carpenter. Luke’s Gospel informs us that the Angel Gabriel, sent from God, visited Mary’s dwelling. He told her that she is “Blessed among women.” Frightened by this visit, Mary was fearful of being deceived, but he soothingly told her to “fear not” and explained to her that she will soon conceive a son who “shall be great and shall be called the Son of the Highest.” “How can this be,” she asked but the Angel explained that nothing is impossible with God. Mary, now calm, pious and with great humility, ended the encounter with, “Be it unto me according to thy word.” Joseph was told by an angel of the miracle and he went through with the formal marriage and gladly took her to his house. This month, on September 8, we celebrate her Nativity. Our All-holy Lady, the Theotokos, stands at the head of the chorus of Saints and remains for us on earth our steadfast Protectress and constant Advocate before the Creator. “It is truly meet and right to bless you, O Theotokos, ever blessed and most pure, and the Mother of our God. More honorable than the Cherubim, and more glorious beyond compare than the Seraphim, without defilement you gave birth to God the Word. True Theotokos we magnify you!”

 

LET US BOW IN WORSHIP TO THE BLESSED CROSS OF THE LORD -  September 14 -  The Feast of the Elevation of the Holy Cross is one of the 12 great feasts of our Holy Orthodox Church. It commemorates the finding of the true Cross of our Lord by St. Helena, the mother of the Emperor Constantine the Great, who led an expedition to the Holy Land for this purpose. During the consecration of the Church of the Resurrection of our Lord in Jerusalem in 335 A.D., it is said that the Patriarch Elevated the Cross for all the faithful to see. Those present fell to their knees and prayed repeatedly: Lord Have Mercy!

 

This ritual is still practiced today in Orthodox Churches throughout the world. The Cross is the greatest of all Christian symbols. It is a constant reminder of God’s love for us, for Christ’s death upon it brought redemption and, ultimately, salvation to mankind. On the Feast Day of the Elevation of the Holy Cross, a cross is placed before us in our churches in a prominent place, reminding us of our obligation to venerate, love and give glory to this “instrument of our salvation.” “For the word of the cross is folly to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. For it is written, "I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and the cleverness of the clever I will thwart." Where is the wise man? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? For since, in the wisdom of God, the world did not know God through wisdom, it pleased God through the folly of what we preach to save those who believe. For Jews demand signs and Greeks seek wisdom, but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles, but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. For the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.” (1 Cor 1:18-25) Wise words in our age as well!

 

Also, the Church New Year is on September 1. Prayer for the Church New Year: ““We give thanks to You in all circumstances and for all things. Grant that this liturgical year be for all of us a year of grace. Make us worthy with purity of heart always to praise you. Lord, glory to You! "

 

Happy Birthday to all those celebrating their birthday in September: Betty Czech, September 1; Fr. Maryan Chaykivsky, September 19; Irina Chaykivsky on September 24; Jennifer Bzik, September 28; and Janice Pecoraro and Joanne Bzik, both on September 30.  May God grant all of you Many Years!

 

On behalf of St. John’s, Helen Baron, our Food Pantry Coordinator, would like to thank you all for your contributions throughout the summer. 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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Divine Liturgy - 9:30 AM

Today the faithful celebrate the feast with joy illumined by your coming, O Mother of God.  Beholding your pure image we fervently cry to you:  “Encompass us beneath the precious veil of your protection; deliver us from every form of evil by entreating Christ,  your Son...