WELCOME! If you are a first time visitor to Saint George’s today. We are glad to have you! Please stay for the coffee social in the parish hall after liturgy so we can get acquainted.
SCRIPTURE READINGS THIS WEEK
June 1st After feast of Ascension; Martyr Justin the Philosopher;
Acts 21:8-14 John 14:27-15:7
June 2nd After feast of Ascension; St. Nicephorus the Confessor, Patriarch of Constantinople
Acts 21:26-32 John 16:2-13
June 3rd After feast of Ascension; Martyr Lucillian and Companions
Acts 23:1-11 John 16:15-23
June 4th After feast of Ascension; Hieromartyr Astius, Bishop of Dyrrachium in Macedonia
Acts 25:13-19 John 16:23-33
June 5th Leave taking of the Ascension; Hieromartyr Dorotheus, Bishop of Tyre
Acts 27:1-44 John 17:18-26
June 6th Memorial Saturday; Venerable Bessarion the Wonderworker of Egypt
1 Thessalonians 4:13-17 John 5:24-30
Activities/Services this Week:
Compline: Wednesday, June 3rd, 6:30 PM, at the church
Memorial Liturgy: Saturday, June 6th, 10 AM, at the church
Great Vespers: Feast of Pentecost, Saturday, June 6th, 5 PM, at the church
The Sanctuary Lamp is being sponsored this week by Stan & Margaret Ostas for the good
health of all. Check the sheet in the narthex for upcoming weeks that are open for sponsoring the lamp.
Last Sunday, May 17th, 27 adults and 11 children attended Divine Liturgy.
Sunday, May 31st we will take up a collection for the Food Pantry. If donating by check, make it out to “All Saints Food Pantry.” For the month of June, we will be collecting flour in whatever quantity one can afford to donate.
We have halupki (cabbage rolls) for sale at $9 for a half dozen, frozen/unbaked apple strudel for $8 each, and pieroghi (potato/cheese, sauerkraut and prune) for $10/dozen. See Mary Gresko or Margaret Ostas about being able to purchase them if interested.
In case you don’t know, we have a wonderful ministry in our church known as the St. Anna’s Guild which does a lot of great work for the church. All ladies of our parish are welcome to become a part of this group. The dues to join are $10 a year. Speak with Julie Olmstead, Joanne Pentsos or Mary Gresko for more info.
On June 20, 2009, a volunteer work day is being planned at St Gregory Palamas Monastery in Hayesville, OH. We would like to involve our older kids in this activity. So, if there are any high school age students that can put in some volunteer time, please let Fr. Paul know by Friday, June 12, 2009.
Today we remember the Fathers of the First Ecumenical Council, convened at Nicaea in 325. The results of the Council were very important, but so was its personal meaning for those who attended, as Father Alexander Schmemann described:
For the first time, after centuries of semi-subterranean existence, prelates gathered from all parts of the Church, many still with the marks of wounds and mutilations received under [the persecutions of the emperor] Diocletian. The unprecedented magnificence of their reception and the hospitality and kindness of the emperor [Constantine] confirmed their joyous assurance that a new era had begun and that Christ was indeed victorious over the world. Constantine himself was the first to interpret the council in this way.
The great accomplishment of the Council was to refute Arianism, a widely-held heresy that threatened to divide the Church. It was a dispute, as the emperor said, that was "more dangerous than war and other conflicts" because it called into question Jesus' ability to be our Savior.
The Arians claimed that Jesus was not eternal, not equal to His Father, but a created being. The Church insisted that He had to be the divinely powerful Son of God in order to be able to save us. So, opposing Arianism, the Fathers of the Council at Nicaea proclaimed that Jesus Christ is of the same substance as His Father, and there was never a time when He did not exist. His perfect divinity, therefore, was able to assume perfect humanity, and save all who are human.
This teaching is squarely Biblical. In one verse of the reading chosen for this day, John 17:5, Jesus prays, "And now, Father, glorify me in thy own presence with the glory which I had with thee before the world was made." Father and Son have the same glory, and have had it forever.
Despite its clear Biblical basis, there are many who don't accept the Church's teaching, including Unitarians, Jehovah's Witnesses, and the Mormons whose work is so generously supported by the devout Marriott family's hotel empire. Even immediately after the decisive declarations of Nicaea, there was conflict. Saint Athanasius was the hero of the Council because he formulated the term "homoousion" (meaning "of one substance" and referring to Christ and His Father.) But Athanasius was hounded ever after by his Arian enemies; they managed to get him condemned and exiled.
The truth established at Nicaea remains basic to our faith. But then, as now, truth was accompanied by deceitfulness and the persecution of truth tellers. We must take comfort, as fourth century Orthodox Christians also had to do, in another verse (16:33b) from John's Gospel: "In the world you have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world."