Sundays: Divine Liturgy 10:00 am
Weekdays: Divine Liturgy 10:00 am
Elder Porphyrios was born in the village of Aghios Ioannis in the province of Karystia on the Greek island of Evia (Euboea). The name he received at birth was Evangelos. His parents, Leonidas and Eleni Bairaktaris, were poor farmers and had difficulty in supporting their large family. For this reason his father left for America where he worked on the construction of the Panama Canal.
Young Evangelos was the fourth child of the family. As a boy he looked after sheep on the hills and had completed only the first class of primary school when, at the age of seven, he was obliged on account of his family’s extreme poverty to go to the nearby town of Chalkida to work. He worked there in a shop for two or three years. Thereafter he went to Piraeus to work in a general store owned by a relative. At the age of twelve he left secretly to go to the Holy Mountain. His longing was to imitate Saint John the Hut-dweller whose life he had read and for whom he felt a special affinity. The grace of God led him to the hermitage of Saint George in Kavsokalyvia on the wooded slopes of the south-eastern extremity of Mount Athos where he lived in obedience to two elders, natural brothers, Panteleimon, who was a father confessor, and Ioannikios, who was a priest. He devoted himself with great love and in a spirit of utter obedience to the two elders who had a reputation for being exceptionally austere.
He became a monk at the age of fourteen and took the name of Niketas. Two years later he took his final monastic vows of the Great Schema. Shortly thereafter he was granted the gift of clear sight. At the age of nineteen he became very seriously ill and was obliged to leave the Holy Mountain. He returned to Evia where he went to live in the Monastery of Saint Charalambos at Levka. A year later, in 1926, and at the age of twenty, he was ordained priest at the Church of Saint Charalambos in Kymi by the Archbishop of Sinai, Porphyrios III, who gave him the name Porphyrios. At the age of twenty-two he became a confessor and spiritual father. For a time he was parish priest in the village of Tsakei in Evia.
He lived for twelve years in the Monastery of Saint Charalambos in Evia serving as a spiritual guide and confessor and then for three years in the deserted Monastery of Saint Nicholas in Ano Vatheia.
In 1940, on the eve of Greece’s entrance into the Second World War, Elder Porphyrios moved to Athens where he became chaplain and confessor in the Polyclinic Hospital. He himself said that he served there for thirty-three years as if it were a single day, devoting himself untiringly to his spiritual work and to easing pain and suffering.
As of 1955 he made his home in the tiny Monastery of Saint Nicholas in Kallisia on the foothills of Mount Pendeli. He rented this monastic dependency along with the surrounding area from the Pendeli Monastery and worked the land with great diligence. At the same time he carried out his copious work of spiritual guidance.
In the summer of 1979 he moved to Milesi, a village some thirty miles north of Athens and overlooking his native Evia, with the dream of founding a monastery there. To begin with he lived in a caravan under exceedingly adverse circumstances and later in a simple room constructed from breeze blocks where he endured without complaint his many health troubles. In 1984 he moved into a room in a wing of the monastery which was under construction. In spite of the fact that the elder was seriously ill and blind, he worked constantly and unstintingly for the completion of the monastery. On the 26th February 1990 he was able to see his dream becoming reality when the foundation stone of the church of the Transfiguration was laid.
During the final years of his earthly life he began to prepare himself for his death. His desire was to return to the Holy Mountain and to his beloved Kavsokalyvia. So it was that he died in his hermitage in Kavsokalyvia on the morning of 2nd December 1991.
This Prophet, whose name means "loving embrace," is eighth in order of the minor Prophets. His homeland and tribe are not recorded in the Divine Scriptures; according to some, he was of the tribe of Symeon. He prophesied in the years of Joachim, who is also called Jechonias, before the Babylonian captivity of the Jewish People, which took place 599 years before Christ. When Nabuchodonosor came to take the Israelites captive, Habakkuk fled to Ostrakine, and after Jerusalem was destroyed and the Chaldeans departed, Habakkuk returned and cultivated his field. Once he made some pottage and was about to take it to the reapers in the field. An Angel of the Lord appeared to him, and carried him with the pottage to Babylon to feed Daniel in the lions' den, then brought him back to Judea (Bel and the Dragon, 33-39): His book of prophecy is divided into three chapters; the third chapter is also used as the Fourth Ode of the Psalter. His holy relics were found in Palestine during the reign of Emperor Theodosius the Great, through a revelation to Zebennus, Bishop of Eleutheropolis (Sozomen, Eccl. Hist., Book VII, 29).
Saint Barbara was from Heliopolis of Phoenicia and lived during the reign of Maximian.
She was the daughter of a certain idolater named Dioscorus. When Barbara came of age, she was enlightened in her pure heart and secretly believed in the Holy Trinity. About this time Dioscorus began building a bath-house; before it was finished he was required to go away to attend to certain matters, and in his absence Barbara directed the workmen to build a third window in addition to the two her Father had commanded. She also inscribed the sign of the Cross with her finger upon the marble of the bath-house, leaving the saving sign cut as deeply into the marble as if it had been done with an iron tool. (When the Synaxarion of Saint Barbara was written, the marble of the bath-house and the cross inscribed by Saint Barbara were still preserved, and many healings were worked there.) When Dioscorus returned, he asked why the third window had been added; Barbara began to declare to him the mystery of the Trinity. Because she refused to renounce her faith, Dioscorus tortured Barbara inhumanely, and after subjecting her to many sufferings he beheaded her with his own hands, in the year 290.
Saint John was born in Damascus about the year 675, the son of wealthy and pious parents, of the family of Mansur. He was reared together with Saint Cosmas (see Oct. 14), who had been adopted by John's father Sergius, a man of high rank in the service of the Caliph of Damascus. Both of these young men were instructed by a certain monk, also named Cosmas, who had been taken captive in Italy by the Arabs and later ransomed by John's Father. Saint John became a great philosopher and enlightener of the age in which he lived, and was honoured by the Caliph with the dignity of counsellor.
When Emperor Leo the Isaurian (reigned 717-741) began his war on the holy icons, John wrote epistles defending their veneration. Since the Saint, being under the Caliph of Damascus, was beyond Leo's power, the Iconoclast Emperor had a letter forged in John's handwriting which invited Leo to attack Damascus, saying the city guard was then weak; Leo then sent this letter to the Caliph, who in his fury punished John's supposed treason with the severing of his right hand. The Saint obtained the Caliph's Permission to have his severed hand again, and that night prayed fervently to the most holy Theotokos before her icon. She appeared to him in a dream and healed his hand, which, when he awoke, he found to be healed in truth. This Miracle convinced the Caliph of his innocence, and he restored John to his office as counsellor. The Saint, however, with many pleadings obtained his permission to withdraw from the world to become a monk. He assumed the monastic habit in the Monastery of Saint Sabbas. Then he had as elder a very simple and austere monk who commanded him neither to write to anyone, nor to speak of the worldly knowledge he had acquired, and John faithfully obeyed. A monk grieving over his brother's death, however, after insisting vehemently, prevailed upon John to write a funeral hymn to console him for his brother's death. When John's elder learned of his transgression of the rule he had given him, he cast him out of his cell, and would only accept him back after John had humbly, with much self-condemnation and without murmuring consented to clean all the latrines in the lavra. After his elder had received him back, our Lady appeared to the elder and sternly charged him not to hinder John any longer from his writings and composition of hymns.
In his writings he fought courageously against the Iconoclasts Leo the Isaurian and his son Constantine Copronymus. He was also the first to write a refutation of Islam. The time he had spent as a counsellor in the courts of the Moslems of Damascus had given him opportunity to learn their teachings at first hand, and he wrote against their errors with a sound understanding of their essence. Saint John was surnamed Chrysorroas ("Golden-stream") because of the eloquence of his rhetorical style and the great abundance of his writings; this name - Chrysorroas was also the name of the river that flows by Damascus. In his writings he set forth the Orthodox Faith with exactness and order. In his old age, after his foster-brother Cosmas had been made Bishop of Maiuma, John also was ordained presbyter by the Patriarch of Jerusalem. Having lived eighty-four years, he reposed in peace in 760. In addition to his theological writings, he adorned the Church of Christ with metrical and prose hymns and composed many of the prosomia used as the models for the melodies of the Church's liturgical chant; he also composed many of the sacred hymns for the feasts of the Lord Saviour and the Theotokos. The life of Saint John of Damascus was written by John, Patriarch of Jerusalem. See also June 28.
This Saint was born in 439 in Moutalaska, a small village of Cappadocia. He entered the arena of the monastic life from childhood and was under that master trainer of monastics, Euthymius, the Great, the teacher of the desert. He became the spiritual Father of many monks and an instructor for the monasteries in Palestine, and was appointed leader (archimandrite) of the desert-dwellers of Palestine by the Patriarch of Jerusalem. In his old age he went to Constantinople, to the Emperors Anastasius and Saint Justinian the Great, in behalf of the Orthodox Faith and the dogmas of the Council of Chalcedon. Having lived ninety-four years, he reposed in 533. The Typicon for the ecclesiastical services had its beginning in the monastery established by this righteous one.
This Saint lived during the reign of Saint Constantine the Great, and reposed in 330, As a young man, he desired to espouse the solitary life. He made a pilgrimage to the holy city Jerusalem, where he found a place to withdraw to devote himself to prayer. It was made known to him, however, that this was not the will of God for him, but that he should return to his homeland to be a cause of salvation for many. He returned to Myra, and was ordained bishop. He became known for his abundant mercy, providing for the poor and needy, and delivering those who had been unjustly accused. No less was he known for his zeal for the truth. He was present at the First Ecumenical Council of the 318 Fathers at Nicaea in 325; upon hearing the blasphemies that Arius brazenly uttered against the Son of God, Saint Nicholas struck him on the face. Since the canons of the Church forbid the clergy to strike any man at all, his fellow bishops were in perplexity what disciplinary action was to be taken against this hierarch whom all revered. In the night our Lord Jesus Christ and our Lady Theotokos appeared to certain of the bishops, informing them that no action was to be taken against him, since he had acted not out of passion, but extreme love and piety. The Dismissal Hymn for holy hierarchs, The truth of things hath revealed thee to thy flock ... was written originally for Saint Nicholas. He is the patron of all travellers, and of sea-farers in particular; he is one of the best known and best loved Saints of all time.
This Saint was born in Gaul in 340, and was a member of the Roman Senate. After the death of Auxentius, the Arian Bishop of Milan, a violent dispute arose among the Orthodox and Arians about who would succeed him. Ambrose, desiring as Governor of the province to restore the peace, attempted to mediate between them. As he spoke to the people, eloquently persuading them to elect a new bishop without tumult and disorder, a young child, inspired from on high, suddenly cried out "Ambrose, bishop!" To his astonishment and dismay, the people immediately took up this cry themselves, and over his many protests, he was raised to the episcopal throne of Milan on December 7, 374. A great Father of the Church, he wrote many works in Latin, and was both an unwearying opponent of Arianism, and a fearless accuser of emperors when they transgressed the law of God. Having lived fifty-seven years, he reposed on April 4, on the eve of Pascha, in the year 397.
Προκείμενον. 2nd Mode. ΨΑΛΜΟΙ 117.14,18.
Ἰσχύς μου καὶ ὕμνησίς μου ὁ Κύριος.
Στίχ. Παιδεύων ἐπαίδευσέ με ὁ Κύριος.
τὸ Ἀνάγνωσμα Πρὸς Ἐφεσίους 6:10-17.
Ἀδελφοί, ἐνδυναμοῦσθε ἐν κυρίῳ, καὶ ἐν τῷ κράτει τῆς ἰσχύος αὐτοῦ. Ἐνδύσασθε τὴν πανοπλίαν τοῦ θεοῦ, πρὸς τὸ δύνασθαι ὑμᾶς στῆναι πρὸς τὰς μεθοδείας τοῦ διαβόλου. Ὅτι οὐκ ἔστιν ἡμῖν ἡ πάλη πρὸς αἷμα καὶ σάρκα, ἀλλὰ πρὸς τὰς ἀρχάς, πρὸς τὰς ἐξουσίας, πρὸς τοὺς κοσμοκράτορας τοῦ σκότους τοῦ αἰῶνος τούτου, πρὸς τὰ πνευματικὰ τῆς πονηρίας ἐν τοῖς ἐπουρανίοις. Διὰ τοῦτο ἀναλάβετε τὴν πανοπλίαν τοῦ θεοῦ, ἵνα δυνηθῆτε ἀντιστῆναι ἐν τῇ ἡμέρᾳ τῇ πονηρᾷ, καὶ ἅπαντα κατεργασάμενοι στῆναι. Στῆτε οὖν περιζωσάμενοι τὴν ὀσφὺν ὑμῶν ἐν ἀληθείᾳ, καὶ ἐνδυσάμενοι τὸν θώρακα τῆς δικαιοσύνης, καὶ ὑποδησάμενοι τοὺς πόδας ἐν ἑτοιμασίᾳ τοῦ εὐαγγελίου τῆς εἰρήνης· ἐπὶ πᾶσιν ἀναλαβόντες τὸν θυρεὸν τῆς πίστεως, ἐν ᾧ δυνήσεσθε πάντα τὰ βέλη τοῦ πονηροῦ τὰ πεπυρωμένα σβέσαι. Καὶ τὴν περικεφαλαίαν τοῦ σωτηρίου δέξασθαι, καὶ τὴν μάχαιραν τοῦ πνεύματος, ὅ ἐστιν ῥῆμα θεοῦ·
Prokeimenon. 2nd Mode. Psalm 117.14,18.
The Lord is my strength and my song.
Verse: The Lord has chastened me sorely.
The reading is from St. Paul's Letter to the Ephesians 6:10-17.
Brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we are not contending against flesh and blood, but against the principalities, against the powers, against the world rulers of this present darkness, against the spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand, therefore, having girded your loins with truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the equipment of the gospel of peace; besides all these, taking the shield of faith, with which you can quench all the flaming darts of the evil one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
14th Sunday of Luke
Κατὰ Λουκᾶν 18:35-43
Τῷ καιρῷ ἐκείνῳ, ᾿Εγένετο δὲ ἐν τῷ ἐγγίζειν αὐτὸν εἰς ῾Ιεριχὼ τυφλός τις ἐκάθητο παρὰ τὴν ὁδὸν προσαιτῶν· ἀκούσας δὲ ὄχλου διαπορευομένου ἐπυνθάνετο τί εἴη ταῦτα. ἀπήγγειλαν δὲ αὐτῷ ὅτι ᾿Ιησοῦς ὁ Ναζωραῖος παρέρχεται. καὶ ἐβόησε λέγων· ᾿Ιησοῦ υἱὲ Δαυΐδ, ἐλέησόν με· καὶ οἱ προάγοντες ἐπετίμων αὐτῷ ἵνα σιωπήσῃ· αὐτὸς δὲ πολλῷ μᾶλλον ἔκραζεν· υἱὲ Δαυΐδ, ἐλέησόν με. σταθεὶς δὲ ὁ ᾿Ιησοῦς ἐκέλευσεν αὐτὸν ἀχθῆναι πρὸς αὐτόν. ἐγγίσαντος δὲ αὐτοῦ ἐπηρώτησεν αὐτὸν λέγων· τί σοι θέλεις ποιήσω; ὁ δὲ εἶπε· Κύριε, ἵνα ἀναβλέψω. καὶ ὁ ᾿Ιησοῦς εἶπεν αὐτῷ· ἀνάβλεψον· ἡ πίστις σου σέσωκέ σε. καὶ παραχρῆμα ἀνέβλεψε, καὶ ἠκολούθει αὐτῷ δοξάζων τὸν Θεόν· καὶ πᾶς ὁ λαὸς ἰδὼν ἔδωκεν αἶνον τῷ Θεῷ.
14th Sunday of Luke
The Reading is from Luke 18:35-43
At that time, as Jesus drew near to Jericho, a blind man was sitting by the roadside begging; and hearing a multitude going by, he inquired what this meant. They told him, "Jesus of Nazareth is passing by." And he cried, "Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!" And those who were in front rebuked him, telling him to be silent; but he cried out all the more, "Son of David, have mercy on me!" And Jesus stopped, and commanded him to be brought to him; and when he came near, he asked him, "What do you want me to do for you?" He said, "Lord, let me receive my sight." And Jesus said to him, "Receive your sight; your faith has made you well." And immediately he received his sight and followed him, glorifying God; and all the people, when they saw it, gave praise to God.
We're Back Home
After about a month of being "in exile" (although it was a fun adventure!) we are this Sunday back in our church. The Narthex is beautifully tiled and the rug is down in the altar. This is a great opportunity to thank God for all the blessings He has bestowed on our Parish Family; it is also a great opportunity to help contribute to the cost of the much needed renovations. Please see a Council Member if you would like to be part of that effort!
After Liturgy today we will be having our Fall General Assembly. Please be present for this important aspect of our Stewardship of God's gift of His Church to us.
We will also be having elections for the Parish Council today.
Many thanks today to the Mother Maria of Paris Outreach Ministries for today's High Tea Fellowship Hour. You are asked for one non-perishable item as entry!
Make sure to check out the many blanks on the schedule for Fellowship Hour. What a wonderful opportunity to work together with another family to provide fellowship for your Parish Family!
Our annual Angel Tree can be found in the Church Hall. Take an angel to make a child's Christmas celebration a little brighter, knowing that someone cares for him or her. The present suggestions are for children's clothing, and should be returned, unwrapped, to the Church by Sunday, December 9.
First Sunday Needed Article Collection
Today our First Sunday Article Collection is underwear. Any type and size appreciated, especially thermal underwear! Please leave your generous offering in the collection box in the Church Hall.
Get Your Raffle Tickets
The Sunday School children will be selling raffle tickets throughout December for the prize of the beautiful afghan which is on display in the Church Hall. Tickets are 1 for $1 and 6 for $5. Your generosity for our Sunday School is greatly appreciated!
A Journey to Fullness
We continue our Journey to Fullness this week on Thursday, December 6 at 6:30 pm in the Church Hall. Our topic is: A Healing Purpose.
On Wednesday, December 5 at 7:00 pm, you are invited to join our brothers and sisters at the St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church, Manchester, to celebrate their Name Day Vespers. A light reception will follow the service.
On Saturday, December 8 at 9:30 am you are invited to join the choir in practicing the carols that we will be singing in our visit on Sunday to the Bel-Air Nursing Home. We will be running through the carols (including the less well known verses after the first!) so that we are all coordinated at the Nursing Home. After the carol practice, the choir will continue with its own practice.
On Saturday, December 8 at 12:00 noon, the Ladies of the parish are invited to enjoy some fellowship at the Philoptochos Christmas Party, which will take place at Sonny's in Henniker. You are invited to bring an anonymous envelope with a contribution toward the Christmas decorations of the church and the needs of our kitchen.
On Sunday, December 9, you are invited to a afternoon of caroling at the Bel-Air Nursing Home in Goffstown, NH beginning at 2:00. The residents are already looking forward to a fun afternoon of their favorite carols! Carpooling information will be forthcoming.
On Tuesday, December 11 from 7:00 to 8:15, you are invited to a quiet time of reflection and prayer entitled Lord, Teach Us to Pray. We talk a lot about prayer, but rarely actually learn how to pray. This evening there will be a short presentation about praying the Jesus Prayer, and then some time together simply praying the Jesus Prayer in a quiet, dim church. This is a good opportunity not only to learn how to pray the Jesus Prayer, but also to offer special prayer for our families and our Parish Family.
On Sunday, December 16 at 4:00 pm, you are invited to An Orthodox Service of Lessons and Carols to put you into the Christmas spirit. The Service is adapted from the Royal Hours of Christmas, and consists of Psalms, Hymns, Readings, and Carols, bringing us to the cave of Bethlehem and the mystery of God becoming man. A light reception will follow.
Check Out the Website!
Check out the church renovations, among other information on our Website holytrinitynh.org. It has a fancy new look and you can follow important information about the Festival, and follow the progress of the renovations. You can also see when we are celebrating the Divine Liturgy. The site is still under construction in parts, so please be patient. If you have any suggestions for improvement, please see Father.
Looking for Good Christmas Presents for Children, Godchildren or Grandchildren?
Are you in need of devotional items, like censers, incense, oil lamps, prayer ropes (koumboskinia)? Could you use a small, simple presentation of the life of a Saint in English or in Greek? Check out our new Holy Trinity Store. Please put the money in the basket; we are using the honor method. Make checks payable to Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church.
Sunday, December 2--14th Sunday of Luke / Our Holy Father Porphyrios of Kavsokalyvia
10:00 am--Divine Liturgy
After Liturgy--General Assembly and Parish Council Elections
First Sunday Article Collection--Underwear (especially warm underwear)
Outreach Ministries High Tea--entrance: one non-perishable food item
Monday, December 3
6:00 pm--Council Meeting
Wednesday, December 5
7:00 pm--Name Day Vespers at St. Nicholas Church, Manchester
Thursday, December 6--Our Father among the Saints, Nicholas the Wonderworker, Bishop of Myra in Lycia
10:00 am--Divine Liturgy
6:30 pm--A Journey to Fullness: A Healing Purpose
Saturday, December 8
10:00 am--Choir Practice
12:00 noon--Philoptochos Christmas Luncheon
Sunday, December 9--10th Sunday of Luke/ Conception of the Theotokos
10:00 am--Divine Liturgy
2:00 pm--Carolling at Bel Air Nursing Home, Goffstown