Weekly Diocesan Bulletin - Sunday, August 20, 2017

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WEEKLY DIOCESAN BULLETIN

SUNDAY, AUGUST 20, 2017

ELEVENTH SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST: AFTERFEAST OF THE TRANSFIGURATION; HOLY MONK-MARTYR DOMETIUS; VENERABLE FATHER OR

RESURRECTIONAL TROPARION - TONE TWO:
When Thou didst descend to death, O Life Immortal, Thou didst slay hell with the splendor of Thy Godhead! And when from the depths Thou didst raise the dead, all the powers of heaven cried out: O Giver of Life! Christ our God! Glory to Thee!

THE TRANSFIGURATION TROPARION - TONE SEVEN:
Thou wast transfigured on the mountain, O Christ God, revealing Thy glory to Thy disciples as far as they could bear it. Let Thy everlasting light shine upon us sinners, through the prayers of the Theotokos. O Giver of Light, glory to Thee!

TROPARION TO SAINT DOMETIUS – TONE FOUR:
Preparing yourself through prayer and fasting on the mountain, you destroyed the hosts of spiritual enemies with the weapon of the Cross. And then courageously preparing yourself for martyrdom, you were crowned by God for both your life and death, O ever-memorable venerable martyr Dometius.

RESURRECTIONAL KONTAKION - TONE TWO:
Hell became afraid, O Almighty Savior, seeing the miracle of Thy Resurrection from the tomb! The dead arose! Creation, with Adam, beheld this and rejoiced with Thee! And the world, O my Savior, praises Thee forever.

KONTAKION TO SAINT DOMETIUS – TONE SIX:
Despising corruption and degrading philosophies, O venerable martyr Dometius, you became a great guide of monks. You did not fear the wrath of the king, who did not wish to honor Christ the true God. Therefore in death you did raise the hymn: God is with me, and no one will be against me.

THE TRANSFIGURATION KONTAKION - TONE SEVEN:
On the mountain Thou wast transfigured, O Christ God, and Thy disciples beheld Thy glory as far as they could see it; so that when they would behold Thee crucified, they would understand that Thy suffering wast voluntary, and would proclaim to the world that Thou art truly the Radiance of the Father!

INSTEAD OF "IT IS TRULY MEET...":
Magnify, O my soul, the Lord who was transfigured on Mount Tabor! Your birthgiving was incorruptible! God came from your body and appeared on earth in flesh, dwelling among men. Therefore, we magnify you, O Theotokos!

EPISTLE READING

PROKEIMENON IN TONE TWO:
The Lord is my strength and my song; He has become my salvation.

ELEVENTH SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST: 1 CORINTHIANS 9: 2-12  Brethren, if I am not an apostle to others yet doubtless I am to you. For you are the seal of my apostleship in the Lord. My defense to those who examine me is this: Do we have no right to eat and drink? Do we have no right to take along a believing wife, as do also the other apostles, the brothers of the Lord and Cephas? Or is it only Barnabas and I who have no right to refrain from working? Who ever goes to war at his own expense? Who plants a vineyard and does not eat of its fruit? Or who tends a flock and does not drink of the milk of the flock? Do I say these things as a mere man? Or does not the law say the same also? For it is written in the law of Moses, “You shall not muzzle an ox while it treads out the grain.” Is it oxen God is concerned about? Or does He say it altogether for our sakes? For our sakes, no doubt, this is written that he who plows should plow in hope, and he who threshes in hope should be partaker of his hope. If we have sown spiritual things for you, is it a great thing if we reap your material things? If others are partakers of this right over you, are we not even more? Nevertheless we have not used this right, but endure all things lest we hinder the gospel of Christ.

THE ALLELUIA VERSES:
The Lord answer you in the day of trouble! The name of the God of Jacob protect you! Save the king, O Lord, and hear us on the day we call!

GOSPEL READING

ELEVENTH SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST: MATTHEW 18:23-35  At that time Jesus said, “Therefore the kingdom of heaven is like a certain king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. And when he had begun to settle accounts, one was brought to him who owed him ten thousand talents. But as he was not able to pay, his master commanded that he be sold, with his wife and children and all that he had, and that payment be made. The servant therefore fell down before him, saying, ‘Master, have patience with me, and I will pay you all.’ Then the master of that servant was moved with compassion, released him, and forgave him the debt. But that servant went out and found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred denarii; and he laid hands on him and took him by the throat, saying, ‘Pay me what you owe!’ So his fellow servant fell down at his feet and begged him, saying, ‘Have patience with me, and I will pay you all.’ And he would not, but went and threw him into prison till he should pay the debt. So when his fellow servants saw what had been done, they were very grieved, and came and told their master all that had been done. Then his master, after he had called him, said to him, ‘You wicked servant! I forgave you all that debt because you begged me. Should you not also have had compassion on your fellow servant, just as I had pity on you?’ And his master was angry, and delivered him to the torturers until he should pay all that was due to him. So My heavenly Father also will do to you if each of you, from his heart, does not forgive his brother his trespasses.”

FROM THE PROLOGUE:


AUGUST 7/20, BY SAINT NIKOLAI VELIMIROVIC:
The Venerable Martyr Dometius
Dometius was born a pagan in Persia during the reign of Emperor Constantine. He became acquainted with the Christian Faith as a young man, abandoned paganism, and was baptized. So much did Dometius love the true Faith that he left every worldly thing and was tonsured a monk in a monastery near the town of Nisibis. He lived for some time among the brethren, and then withdrew to a life of silence with the elder, Archmandrite Urbel (who is said to have eaten only uncooked food for sixty years). Elder Urbel made Dometius a deacon, and when he wanted to compel him to receive the rank of a priest, Dometius withdrew to an isolated mountain and settled in a cave. He attained such a high degree of perfection through fasting, prayer, all-night vigils and godly thoughts that he miraculously cured the sick. When Julian the Apostate came to those regions, he heard of Dometius and sent men to seal him up alive in a cave, with two of his disciples. Thus, this saint of God reposed and took up his abode in the Kingdom of God in the year 363.

The Venerable Or, Hermit of the Thebaid
Or attained great perfection through the greatest asceticism. When he firmly established himself and attained holiness in solitude, he gradually established several monasteries, and was a superb spiritual leader and teacher of many monks. Rufinus, who visited him, describes Or in the following way: “In appearance, he resembled an angel of God—a ninety-year old elder with a long beard, as white as snow. His outward aspect was wonderful. His gaze shone with superhuman radiance.” Often he saw the angels of God. He especially endeavored never to speak an untruth. He had great temptations from the demons, but overpowered them all, soberly and courageously. He received Holy Communion daily. On one occasion, one of his disciples reminded him that the Feast of the Resurrection had come, and that it should be celebrated. Hearing this, Or came out, raised his hands to heaven and spent three days in prayer without rest. He explained to his disciple: “For the monk, this is the celebration of the Resurrection of Christ: to elevate his mind and to unite it with God.” He reposed in deep old age in about the year 390.

The Holy Martyrs Marinus and Asterius
Marinus was a soldier and Asterius was a Roman senator. At the time of Emperor Gallienus, St. Marinus served as a soldier in Caesarea in Palestine. Marinus was beheaded for the sake of the Christian Faith. Asterius, the senator, also a Christian, was present at his martyrdom. He removed his toga and wrapped the body of the martyr in it. He then carried the body on his shoulders and honorably buried it. Seeing this, the pagans beheaded him also. They both died honorably for Christ in about 260.

The Venerable Poemen, the Much-ailing
Since his youth, Poemen was both sickly and desirous of the monastic life. Brought to the Lavra of the Kiev Caves for healing, he remained there until his death. Poemen prayed to God more for sickness than for health. At night, angels appeared to him and tonsured him a monk. They also informed him that he would be ill until his death and that just before his death he would become healthy. And so it was. Poemen was bedridden for twenty years. He worked miracles during his lifetime, and possessed a rare gift of clairvoyance. Just prior to his death, he rose from the bed completely whole, and immediately prepared a grave for himself. He reposed in the Lord in the year 1110.

The Hieromartyr Narcissus, Patriarch of Jerusalem
Narcissus was beheaded at the time of Antoninus, in the year 213, being 116 years of age.

HYMN OF PRAISE: Saint Or, Hermit of the Thebaid
To the honor and glory of monks,
Or, the all-wise Abba, chief among monks,
With great labor and many sighs
Reached the perfection of a true monk.
Give us a word, they once begged him!
“Speak the truth, never tell a lie.
I know a man who never swore,
Never lied, never wished evil to another.”
Having replied, the elder was silent.
Then holy Sisoes asked Or:
“Give me, Father, some instruction.”
“Live,” Or said to him, “as you see me live!”
“Tell me more clearly, how should I see you?
Does every man hide a secret in himself?”
Or spoke again: “Behold, I speak to you:
Of all God’s creations, I consider myself the worst.”
Or taught his disciple, Paul, in this way:
“From every sin you will easily flee,
If only you will flee from evil conversation,
For every other sin sprouts from this evil.
Evil conversation is death to the soul of man;
It smothers every good seed in the heart.
I will say one more thing, and let it be enough:
Repel all vain thoughts; repel iniquitous desires;
Distance yourself from material cares,
And you will attain the immaterial, my son.”

REFLECTION
Neither concern yourself about the righteous nor envy the sinner. Always remember that the Lord Jesus Christ, by His Resurrection, triumphed over a shameful death—and that Herod, Judas, Nero, Julian the Apostate, Valerian, Leo the Armenian, and other opponents of Christ destroyed their own successes and victories forever, by their shameful deaths. Envious ones slandered St. Narcissus the patriarch, spreading rumors that he had lost his chastity. The innocent Narcissus withdrew into the wilderness. He spent many years in silence and patiently waited for God to do His will. Three patriarchs succeeded him before witnesses came forward to clearly prove his innocence. Then everyone forced him to return from the wilderness to the patriarchal throne. Thus, God justifies the righteous. The bloody Emperor Valerian, with satanic passion, murdered Christians throughout the entire civilized world. How did he end his days? He was defeated in battle and enslaved by the Persian king, Sapor. Sapor did not desire to kill him immediately, but used him as a mounting block whenever he mounted a horse. Every day, King Sapor’s servants brought Valerian along with the horses, and Sapor enjoyed placing his foot on the neck of the Roman emperor in order to make it easier for him to mount the horse. He who sows evil seed reaps an evil harvest.

CONTEMPLATION
Contemplate the mercy of God toward the barren Hannah, the mother of Samuel (I Samuel 1):
1. How Hannah was barren, and in her sorrow implored God that she be enabled to bear a son, promising to dedicate him to God;
2. How God heard the prayers of Hannah, and she bore a son, and named him Samuel (bidden of God);
3. How Hannah brought Samuel to the Temple and dedicated him to God.

HOMILY
on the new Law from Zion
For out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem (Isaiah 2:3).
The prophet speaks of a new Law and of a new Word. The old Law was given on Sinai; the new Law would come from Zion. The old Law was given through Moses; the new Law would be brought by the Lord Christ Himself. The former was intended in the beginning only for the Jews, and the latter would be for all people—all of mankind. Even though these words of the prophet are clear to us, the Jews could not understand them; nor do they understand them today. The meaning of these words is closed to them because of their stony hearts. To whom do they apply these words? To no one. How do they interpret these words? They do not. They pass by these words as a blind man passes by an open door. If they were able to comprehend these words, would they have acted in the manner they did with the prophet and the prophesied One? Would they have sawn Isaiah asunder, and crucified Christ on the Cross?
The Jews considered the Law of Moses to be the one, final Law of God. That is why they were unable to comprehend the prophecy of the new Law from Zion, from the House of David, for David glorified Zion. But if the Jews did not know that the new Law would be revealed through the old Law, we Christians know that we comprehend the old Law through the new. The Jews had a tree without fruit, but we have the tree and the fruit. They had an image without reality, but we have both image and reality. They adhered only to promises (and those they understood incorrectly), but we have the promises and their fulfillment.
O most wealthy Lord, Who has enriched us with Thy spiritual Law and Thy life-giving Word, Thee only do we worship, and to Thee only do we pray. Grant us wisdom and power to live according to Thy Law and to uphold Thy holy Word, so that we may not become poor before Thee, Who hast made us rich!
To Thee be glory and praiseforever. Amen.


DIOCESAN DAYS 2017


21st Annual Diocesan 
Days Gathering

Sept. 1st – Sept. 3rd 

Saint Steven’s Serbian Orthodox Cathedral Alhambra, California


THE CHURCH AS FAMILY & 
THE FAMILY AS CHURCH


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“You are no longer strangers and aliens, but the members of the household of God”
(Eph. 2:19)

With
Fr. Timothy Pavlatos

SCHEDULE


+++ DIOCESAN NEWS +++
Bishop Maxim visits his flock in Portland, OR
12 Aug 2017
Bishop Maxim Ordains Reader Nektari Rodrequez to the Deaconate
30 July 2017
Camp Saint Sava 2017 in Jackson
21 July 2017
Our Holy Hierarch, Father Mardarije, pray unto God for us!
16 July 2017
PATRIARCH IRINEJ VISITS SAINT SAVA CATHEDRAL SITE IN NEW YORK
15 July 2017
PATRIARCH IRINEJ ARRIVES IN UNITED STATES
13 July 2017
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09 July 2017
eugene thumb The Feast of St. John the Wonderworker in Eugene, OR
02 July 2017
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25 June 2017


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