St. George Greek Orthodox Church
Publish Date: 2017-03-19
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St. George Greek Orthodox Church

General Information

  • Phone:
  • (651) 222-6220
  • Fax:
  • (651) 225-9276
  • Street Address:

  • 1111 Summit Avenue

  • Saint Paul, MN 55105

Contact Information

Services Schedule

Sunday Morning Orthros/Matins 8:15am, Divine Liturgy 9:30am; Saturday Great Vespers 5:00pm (October thru May); Weekday Services (see Online Calendar, Sunday Bulletin & Monthly Newsletter); Confession (by appointment).

Past Bulletins

Hymns of the Day

Resurrectional Apolytikion in the Plagal 2nd Mode

When the angelic powers appeared at your tomb and those who guarded You became as though dead, and standing by Your sepulchre was Mary seeking Your pure and sacred body. For You did vanquish Hades and uncorrupted by its touch You came unto the virgin woman, bestowing the gift of life O You who rose from the dead. Lord we give glory to You.

Apolytikion for Sun. of the Holy Cross in the 1st Mode

Save O Lord, O Lord Your people, and bless Your inheritance. Grant victory to the faithful against the adversaries of the Faith, and protect Your people through Your Holy Cross, Your Holy Cross.

Seasonal Kontakion in the Plagal 4th Mode

To you, Theotokos, invincible Defender, having been delivered from peril, I, your city, dedicate the victory festival as a thank offering. In your irresistible might, keep me safe from all trials, that I may call out to you: "Hail, unwedded bride!"

Saints and Feasts

March 19

The Holy Martyrs Chrysanthus and Daria

Saint Chrysanthus, who was from Alexandria, had been instructed in the Faith of Christ by a certain bishop. His father, who was a senator by rank and a pagan, had him shut up in prison for many days; then, seeing the unchanging disposition of his mind, he commanded that a certain young woman named Daria be brought from Athens. She was a very beautiful and learned maiden, and also an idolater, and Chrysanthus' father wedded him to her so that he might be drawn away from the Faith of Christ because of his love for her. Instead of this however, Chrysanthus drew Daria unto piety, and both of them boldly proclaimed Christ and received the crown of martyrdom in 283, during the reign of Numerian, when they were buried alive in a pit of mire.

March 19

Demetrios the New Martyr

March 19

Sunday of the Holy Cross

With the help of God, we have almost reached the middle of the course of the Fast, where our strength has been worn down through abstinence, and the full difficulty of the labour set before us becomes apparent. Therefore our holy Mother, the Church of Christ, now brings to our help the all-holy Cross, the joy of the world, the strength of the faithful, the staff of the just, and the hope of sinners, so that by venerating it reverently, we might receive strength and grace to complete the divine struggle of the Fast.


Gospel and Epistle Readings

Matins Gospel Reading

Sixth Orthros Gospel
The Reading is from Luke 24:36-53

At that time, Jesus, having risen from the dead, stood in the midst of his disciples and said to them, "Peace to you." But they were startled and frightened, and supposed that they saw a spirit. And he said to them, "Why are you troubled, and why do questionings rise in your hearts? See my hands and feet, that it is I myself; handle me, and see; for a spirit has not flesh and bones as you see that I have." And when he said this, he showed them his hands and his feet. And while they still disbelieved for joy, and wondered, he said to them, "Have you anything here to eat?" They gave him a piece of broiled fish, and he took it and ate before them.

Then he said to them, "These are my words which I spoke to you, while I was still with you, that everything written about me in the law of Moses and the prophets and the psalms must be fulfilled. Then he opened their minds to understand the scriptures, and said to them, "Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead, and that repentance and forgiveness of sins should be preached in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things. And behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you; but stay in the city, until you are clothed with power from on high."

Then he led them out as far as Bethany, and lifting up his hands, he blessed them. While he blessed them, he parted from them, and was carried up into heaven. And they worshiped him, and they returned to Jerusalem with great joy, and were continually in the temple blessing God.

Epistle Reading

Prokeimenon. Plagal 2nd Mode. Psalm 27.9,1.
O Lord, save your people and bless your inheritance.
Verse: To you, O Lord, I have cried, O my God.

The reading is from St. Paul's Letter to the Hebrews 4:14-16; 5:1-6.

BRETHREN, since we have a high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we have not a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need. For every high priest chosen from among men is appointed to act on behalf of men in relation to God, to offer gifts and sacrifices for sins. He can deal gently with the ignorant and wayward, since he himself is beset with weakness. Because of this he is bound to offer sacrifice for his own sins as well as for those of the people. And one does not take the honor upon himself, but he is called by God, just as Aaron was. So also Christ did not exalt himself to be made a high priest, but was appointed by him who said to him, "Thou art my Son, today I have begotten thee"; as he says also in another place, "Thou art a priest for ever, after the order of Melchizedek."

Gospel Reading

Sunday of the Holy Cross
The Reading is from Mark 8:34-38; 9:1

The Lord said: "If anyone wishes to come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it; and whoever loses his life for my sake and the gospel's will save it. For what does it profit a man, to gain the whole world and forfeit his life? For what can a man give in return for his life? For whoever is ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him will the Son of man also be ashamed, when he comes in the glory of his Father with the holy angels." And he said to them, "Truly, I say to you, there are some standing here who will not taste death before they see the kingdom of God come with power."


Wisdom of the Fathers

And see how He also makes His discourse unexceptionable: not saying at all, "whether you will, or no, you must suffer this," but how? "If any man will come after me."
St. John Chrysostom
Homily 55 on Matthew 16, 1. B#54, p.339., 4th Century

"I force not, I compel not, but each one I make lord of his own choice; wherefore also I say, 'If any man will.' For to good things do I call you, not to things evil, or burdensome; not to punishment and vengeance, that I should have to compel.
St. John Chrysostom
Homily 55 on Matthew 16, 1. B#54, p.339., 4th Century



Message from His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios

Encyclical of Archbishop Demetrios for Holy and Great Lent 2017


With this light that shines in our hearts we will also offer a witness through our observance of Lent and through our lives. As we know and experience God’s grace, others will see His offering of forgiveness. They will see the power of grace to transform life and bring healing and restoration. They will find salvation in Christ as the grace of God works in and through us to show all His redeeming love.

Fr. Rick's Sermon

Sound of Silence (3-12-2017)

   I’m going to repeat some words, a few short phrases, and then see if you can tell me if you recognize where they are from. Some of you who are older, like me, may recognize them right away.

Hello darkness, my old friend; I've come to talk with you again
Because a vision softly creeping; Left its seeds while I was sleeping
And the vision that was planted in my brain; Still remains; Within the sound of silence

   I see a few of you nodding your heads that you do recognize these words because they are from a famous song titled by the last four words: The Sound of Silence. It’s hard to believe that this song was released the year I was born, 1964. It was written and performed by Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel and it’s still popular today. One could say it’s a classic. But what does the song mean? Why was it written? It’s not completely clear but Paul Simon has previously said that it was about how he wrote songs. He would go into his bathroom, turn out the lights and sit there by himself in complete darkness and silence. And in those conditions, the words and the music would come to him.

   And this connects very well with what we are celebrating today on the Second Sunday of Great and Holy Lent. We commemorate St. Gregory Palamas Archbishop of Thessalonike today because he was the champion of hesychia, Greek meaning ‘silence.’ St. Gregory was a defender of silent prayer. We often think of prayer as talking to God but do we ever thing of prayer as not talking? And hesychastic prayer is not only not talking but also not thinking—no thoughts.

   If, as St. Paul says, we are temples of the Holy Spirit (1Cor.3:16; 6:19-20), then God’s Spirit lives in us. What we need is to be constantly attentive to the Word of God speaking in our hearts.

   Hesychia may be likened to contemplation, which begins where prayer leaves off, where there are no words, no actions and no thoughts. Contemplation, enjoying the Lord in silence, is as close to heave as we can get here on earth. St. Theophan the Recluse (+1894) says that hesychastic prayer leads us into the very presence of God: “To pray is to descend with the mind into the heart, and there to stand before the face of the Lord, ever-present, all-seeing, within you.”

    As far back as 1927, studies have repeatedly link noise pollution to hearing problems, insomnia, ulcers, high blood pressure and heart disease.

   In silence some of the world’s greatest discoveries have been made. Archimedes discovered the law of specific gravity while relaxing in silence in his bath. Galileo discovered the principle of the pendulum while praying silently in the cathedral of Pisa. When the scientist of today would wrest some secret of nature’s mystery, he does not set up his apparatus in the midst of a noisy and crowded street, but in some quiet and remote laboratory, where he waits for nature to speak. It is so when man waits for God to speak. He must close the door on the world.

   Elijah found that the Lord was not in the whirlwind, nor in the earthquake nor in the fire, but in the still small voice (1Kings 19:11). Isaiah learned that quietness and confidence were sources of his strength.

   For thus says the Lord GOD, the Holy One of Israel; In returning and rest shall you be saved; in quietness and in confidence shall be your strength: and you would not.” (Isaiah 30:15)

   35 In the morning, while it was still very dark, he got up and went out to a deserted place, and there he prayed. (Mark 1:35)

Jesus prayed in the Garden of Gethsemane (Matthew 26:36-46)

   12 Now it came to pass in those days that He went out to the mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God. (Luke 6:12)

   If Jesus found it necessary to guard carefully the time for quietness and reflection; if He had to be alone to keep His soul steady; how much more do we? We cannot know God if we are always in motion, caught up in and held prisoners by the rush and pace of life. It is when we go into our closet and shut the door that God has an opportunity to become real to us. Perhaps this is the reason God makes silence happen in our life: the silence of sleep, the silence of sickness, the silence of sorrow, and most of all the silence of death.

   “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!” (Psalm 46:10)

   It must be understood that silent prayer cannot stand alone. It is intimately related to public worship. As one of the saints said, “There can be no closet prayer without common prayer.” It is common prayer that gives us the inspiration and enthusiasm and guidance to practice closet prayer.

   Fr. Thomas Hopko said, “In order to pray you’ve got to be quiet. In order to know your children, you’ve go to be quiet. In order to get to know your spouse you’ve got to be quiet. In order to get to know yourself, you’ve go to be quiet. In order to get to know God, you’ve got to be quiet.”

   “The highest form of prayer is to stand silently in awe before God” (St. Isaac the Syrian).

I have often repented of having spoken but never of having remained silent” (Abbot Arsenius).

   The desert Fathers tell of the time Archbishop Theophilos went to the desert to visit Abba Pambo. But Abba did not speak to him. When the brethren finally said to Pambo, “Father, say something to the archbishop so that he may be edified,” he replied, “If he is not edified by my silence, he will not be edified by my speech.”

   A brother once came to visit Abba Moses and asked him for a word of advice. The old man said to him, “Go, sit in your cell, and your cell will teach you everything.” Amen!


News and Events



March 19, 2017                                                                                VENERATION OF HOLY CROSS


TODAY’S EVENTS: Procession/Veneration of the Cross 11am; Greek School 12pm, Greek Dance Practice 1pm; Pan-Orthodox Lenten Vespers and reception at Holy Trinity Church in St. Paul 4pm; Serve-a-Meal at FOCUS on Lake Street, hosted by St. George 4pm.


Epistle Reader: Stephen Kanavati                                       Prosfora: anonymous

Fellowship: Contolatis Family                                             Head Usher: Jon Kennedy


Monday       03-20     GREAT COMPLINE (by readers)                                                                            6:00PM

                                      Catechism Class: Sacraments III-Marriage & Monasticism with Fr. Morbey         7:00PM

Tuesday       03-21     Parish Council Meeting                                                                                             6:30PM

                                      Choir Practice                                                                                                             6:30PM   

Wednesday 03-22     NINTH HOUR                                                                                                             5:30PM

                                      PRESANCTIFIED LITURGY                                                                                      6:00PM

                                      Lenten Meal & Lecture on Modern Heresies with Fr. Richard Andrews                    7:30PM

Thursday     03-23     Glad Tidings mailing (volunteers needed)                                                               10:00AM

Friday          03-24     GREAT VESPERS with SALUTATIONS                                                                        6:00PM

                                      Lenten Meal & Lecture on the Torah, aka the Pentateuch with Dcn. Gavrilyuk          7:30PM

Saturday      03-25     LITURGY- ANNUNCIATION & Greek Independence                                                  9:00AM

                                      GREAT VESPERS                                                                                                    5:00PM

Sunday         03-26     ORTHROS (8:15 am) & DIVINE LITURGY – ST. JOHN CLIMACUS                       9:30AM

                                      Greek Independence Celebration                                                                             12:00PM

                                      Serve-a-Meal at FOCUS                                                                                           4:00PM

                                      Pan-Orthodox Lenten Vespers & Reception at St. Elizabeth Orthodox Church        4:00PM



The Gift of the Holy Spirit- was bestowed upon the servant of God Aida Gabriel Abebe in the Holy Sacrament of Chrismation on Sunday, March 12th. Welcome to the Orthodox Christian Church!

Sympathies & Condolences: to the Paraschou family, on the falling asleep of their uncle Fr. Athanasios Belantonas who reposed on March 1st in Greece, 65 years to the day of his ordination anniversary.

Hierarchical Visits: to our parish with Bishop Neofitos Kongai of Nyeri & Mt. Kenya on Saturday March 25th, and Bishop Demetrios of Mokissos on Palm Sunday April 9th. Please come welcome them!

Think About It: Repentance is the beginning, middle and end of the Christian way of life. Thus, it is sought and required before, during and after Holy Baptism.                                          St. Gregory Palamas (+1359)

Greek Independence Day Lunch: the AHEPA will sponsor the annual Greek Independence Celebration lunch next Sunday, March 26th. Tickets available at the door. See insert for details.

Summer Camp Early Bird Registration: will open on April 18th at 10am. Registration fees are as follows: Early Bird Discount:  $425 from April 18- May 5, 2017; Standard Fee:  $475 from May 6-25, 2017 at 4:30pm. Please register at: Summer Camp dates are July 1-7, 2017.

Youth: On April 8th we have our annual Lazurus Saturday youth retreat from 10am-2pm, when we will clean the church in preparation for Great and Holy Pascha. We will have our Holy Friday youth retreat on April 14th from 11am-3pm. Please contact Nathaniel Kostick to RSVP for these events. We hope to see you there!

Wisdom from the Church Fathers: What we gain by fasting is not so great as the damage done by anger; nor is the profit from reading as great as the harm done when we scorn or grieve a brother. St. John Cassian (+435)

Parent Volunteers Needed: We are looking for a parent for both Saturday of Lazarus and Holy Friday to coordinate the potluck meals. The sign-up sheet is located in the social hall. Thank you!

Half Way thru Lenten Lectures: "Modern Heresies" on Wednesdays with Fr. Rick speaksa on pluralism this week and phyletism the last week. Fridays on "The Torah-Pentateuch" with Dr. Eugenia Gavrilyuk speaking about Leviticus & Numbers this week and Fr. Marc Boulos speaking about Deuteronomy the last week.

Greek Dancing: parents, if you would like your child to participate in Greek dancing lessons and performances organized by the Greek School, please contact Angela Mortari or Stella Hofrenning. Both a Children's group and a Teen group will perform at the Greek Independence Day Celebration next Sunday and at the Festival of Nations in May. Practices are on Sundays after liturgy in the social hall starting at noon.

The Church Fathers Speak: The Holy Fathers teach us that the one who forgives always wins. If you forgive, you immediately cleanse your soul and become fit for paradise. If you forgive those who plotted to murder you, you become equal to the martyrs. If you forgive an insult, you gain peace and won the Kingdom of Heaven. If you generously overlook rumors and slanders against you, you dull the sting of your foe. If you return good for evil, you shame your enemy. If you swallow a sarcastic insult, you become worth of heavenly honors.    Archmandrite Seraphim Aleksiev (+1993)

Lenten Meals: please see sign-up sheet in social hall. You can volunteer individually or with a group.

Stewardship 2017: Our theme is You are the Voice of Christ in a Changing World: As the Father Has Sent Me, So I Send You (John 20:21). We have received 89 pledge cards for 2017 with a total of $147,196 and an average of $1,654. When pledging be sure to increase your pledge, even if only a few dollars. This reflects spiritual growth and overcomes stagnation. We encourage everyone to give a minimum of 2% pledge of gross yearly income to become a self-sustaining community. This is far less than the biblical ideal of tithing, giving 10%.

Patristic Wisdom: I arise today through God’s strength to pilot me, God’s might to uphold me, God’s wisdom to guide me, God’s eye to look before me, God’s ear to hear me, and God’s word to speak to me.                 St. Patrikios/Patrick of Ireland (+493)

Holy Land/Russia Pilgrimage: Sept.27 – Oct.11 2017. Holy Land trip is first 9 days and costs $1,300/ person. Russian trip is afterwards for 6 days at $1,550/person. Prices do not include air, travel insurance and tips. Several options available. Pilgrimage hosted by Icon Art Studios under the leadership of Tom Rudquist at and Deb Korluka

Pictorial Directory 2015: is now available for $5 per copy. They can be purchased either from Julie in the office or in the bookstore (limit, one per family).

Palm Sunday Fish Lunch: on Sunday, April 9, following the Divine Liturgy. Tickets available at the door.

Greek Cookbooks: various vintage hardcover editions in Greek are available in the bookstore.

Save the Date! The St. George Greek Festival will be August 19-20. 2017. More volunteers are needed to serve on committees; if you are interested, please contact Jon Kennedy, Phyllis Kapetanakis or Alexis Bighley.

Welcome Visitors Thank you for joining with us in prayer and fellowship. The worship of the Orthodox Church is deeply rooted in and very similar to that of the early Christian Church. Unique sensory stimuli and mystery are elements that go back even to the liturgy of the Jewish temple. Everything in an Orthodox Christian church communicates the majestic presence of God the Holy Trinity with His Saints. It is literally heaven on earth. It is a sad consequence of the divisions in Christianity that we cannot extend a general invitation to receive Holy Communion. Visitors are invited to receive the blessed bread (antithoron) at the conclusion of the liturgy. We pray and work for the reconciliation and unity of all Christians. If you are interested in learning more about Orthodoxy, please contact Fr. Rick at We are proud of our Greek heritage but one does not have to be of Greek descent, nor speak Greek to be a Greek Orthodox Christian.

Note to Orthodox about Holy Communion: Receiving the Body and Blood of Christ is one of the most Holy experiences for a Christian in order to be granted the forgiveness of sins and everlasting life. We are never worthy to partake of Divine Nature. Yet, it is essential that we prepare ourselves for this sacred Communion by constant prayer, reading the Scriptures, regular fasting and periodic Confession. At a minimum, we should fast all morning before Communion, arrive at the beginning of Liturgy, and come for Confession at least once a year. In addition, we should not have separated ourselves from the Church through serious sin. Otherwise, please refrain from Communion to avoid “judgment…not discerning the Lord’s body” (1Cor. 11:29). Contact Fr. Rick for pastoral guidance.

Glad Tidings deadline: The 10th of each month. Glad Tidings email:  Sunday Bulletin Deadline: Wednesday Noon each week.  Email:


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