FIRST SUNDAY OF THE GREAT FAST MARCH 1, 2009

27 02 2009

Saturday, Feb. 28
4:00 PM Good Health and God’s Blessing on Andrew Partrylak –
wife Clara

Sunday, March 1 FIRST SUNDAY OF THE GREAT FAST
8:30 AM God’s Blessings and Good Health for all Parishioner

Wednesday, March 4
9:00 AM Liturgy of the Presanctified Gifts

Friday, March 6
7:00 PM Stations of the Cross – Sorokousty Service

Saturday, March 7
4:00 PM  Anna Puchalski – Mrs. Theresa Levanda

Sunday, March 8 SECOND SUNDAY OF THE GREAT FAST
8:30 AM God’s Blessings and Good Health for all Parishioners
4:00 PM Deanery Stations of the Cross – SS Peter & Paul, U.C.C.
Wilkes-Barre

TRANSFIGURATION OF OUR LORD
Saturday 6:00 PM – Sunday 10:30 AM
Wednesdays – Stations of the Cross – 7:00 PM
Fridays – Liturgy of the Presanctified Gifts – 9:00 AM

THE SUNDAY OF ORTHODOXY

The first Sunday of the Great Fast is called the Sunday of Orthodoxy. What do we mean by “orthodoxy”? The word “orthodoxy” stems from the Greek word “orthodoxia” (orthos=right; doksa=opinion) which signifies the true faith and the true worship of God. We are not speaking here of orthodoxy as we understand it today as being opposed to the Catholic Church, but orthodoxy, as applied to the whole Church of Christ until the schism between the Eastern and Western Churches which occurred in the eleventh century under the patriarch Cerularius (1054). The orthodoxy that we celebrate this Sunday is universal-catholic orthodoxy, professed by the entire Church of Christ of the first centuries in the battle against the heresy of Iconoclasm (Gr – eikon=image; klastes=a breaker; – an image breaking heresy). The Sunday of Orthodoxy is a festival for the whole Church, both Eastern and Western. It is the festive celebration of the decisive victory over Iconoclasm and other heresies.
The purpose of this feast is to pay solemn public homage and veneration to the holy icons of Jesus Christ, the Blessed Mother of God, and all the Saints.
The Church of Christ deeply respects and honors the holy icons as it also does holy relics. She places them in church for public veneration and recommends that we venerate them privately in our homes, and wear small icons around our necks in the form of little crosses or medals.

Resolutions for Avoiding Misery

Choose to love — rather than hate
Choose to smile — rather than frown
Choose to build — rather than destroy
Choose to persevere — rather than quit
Choose to praise — rather than gossip
Choose to heal — rather than wound
Choose to give — rather than grasp
Choose to act — rather than delay
Choose to forgive — rather than curse
Choose to pray — rather than despair

GREAT LENT
Although our time has brought with it many changes in church laws, traditions, and discipline, and the Second Vatican Council has relaxed the rules for fasting, including the Great Fast, nevertheless, the Forty Days Fast still has significance for our spiritual life. For various reasons, today we may be unable to fast in the same way as our ancestors did; yet even today we are obliged to a spiritual fast – that is, we are obliged to refrain from sin, and from giving in to our evil inclinations. We are also obliged to pray and to practice virtue and good deeds. In reality then, the most important goal of the Great Fast is our spiritual renewal.
The Liturgy of the Presanctified Gifts:
A typical Lenten service is the Liturgy of the Presanctified Gifts. Already in the first centuries there was a custom during the Forty Days Fast to omit the celebration of the Divine Liturgy because, at that time, it was still linked with agape, that is the love banquet, and this was not in keeping with the spirit of fasting. Furthermore, the Divine Liturgy was regarded as joyful mystery; for this reason, its celebration was limited to Saturday and Sunday. On the other days of the week to give the faithful an opportunity to receive Holy Communion, the Divine Liturgy was replaced by other services, from which the Liturgy of the Presanctified Gifts developed in time. Actually, this is not a Liturgy in the sense of the word, for it does not have the consecration of bread and wine; but rather, it is a Vespers service combined with the rite of Holy Communion, for which the bread was previously consecrated. Hence, the name of Presanctified Gifs.
The Council of Laodicia (c.364) prescribed: “It is not permitted during the Great Fast to offer up the Bread (that is the Holy Liturgy), except on Saturday and Sunday” (rule 49). The Sixth Ecumenical Council of Trullo (691) decreed: “On all the days of the Great Fast, with the exception of Saturday and Sunday, and the feast of the Annunciation, the Liturgy of the Presanctified Gifts must be celebrated. “ (rule 52).

SUNDAY LITURGIES DURING LENT:
WHY DO THEY SEEM LONGER?

Our Byzantine Rite prescribes that the Liturgy of St. Basil the Great is to be celebrated on all of the Sundays of Great Lent, instead of the Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom, which is usually celebrated throughout the rest of the church year. St.
Basil’s Liturgy is older and has longer priestly prayers than the St. John Chrysostom Liturgy (which was derived from the Liturgy of St. Basil the Great), and is celebrated ten times during the church year: the five Sundays of Lent (not Palm Sunday), Holy Thursday, Holy Saturday, Christmas Eve, Epiphany Eve, and on the actual Feast of St. Basil which we celebrate on January 1.

SANCTUARY LIGHT: The Sanctuary Light is requested to burn this week Feb. 28 – March 7 by Charles Drazba & Family in memory of Charles Drazba, Sr.

FLOWERS: Our thanks to Rose Sivick for her donation of 2 Bouquets this week in memory of the Sivick Family.

CALENDAR LOTTERY: It is time for our May Lottery tickets. Mike Sinko had the tickets printed and ready for distribution. Please, if you can take a few to sell it would be a great help as we are missing a few of our sellers. Ask your family and friends to purchase a chance to win.

FORGIVENESS SUNDAY VESPERS: If you did not attend the Vesper Services last Sunday you certainly missed a beautiful Service and a great Fellowship afterwards. We thank all the men and women of the parish who did their part in setting up, preparing and serving at the meal. The Parishes in the Deanery all contributed food for this occasion and was enjoyed by all. A special thanks to all who donated monetary gifts, cakes, cover dishes, desserts and for just being in attendance. This was a wonderful way to start our Great Fast.

TIME CHANGE: It is time to spring forward. Turn you clocks forward one hour next Sunday, March 8th at 2:00 AM. This is the beginning of Day Light Saving Time.

THANKS: Our thanks to the men and women who came out to clean the church last week. God Bless you all for your time and helping in this project.

PRAYERS: Please remember in your prayers the sick of the parish. If you have anyone in the hospital or nursing home you should call Father Roman because he has no way of knowing otherwise.

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