St. Alexis of Wilkes-Barre Orthodox Church
Publish Date: 2023-08-06
Bulletin Contents
Transfiguration
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St. Alexis of Wilkes-Barre Orthodox Church

General Information

  • Phone:
  • 860-664-9434
  • Street Address:

  • PO Box 134, 108 E Main St

  • Clinton, CT 06413-0134


Contact Information




Services Schedule

Please see our online calendar for dates and times of Feast Day services.


Past Bulletins


Welcome

Gospel1

Jesus Christ taught us to love and serve all people, regardless of their ethnicity or nationality. To understand that, we need to look no further than to the Parable of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:25-37). Every time we celebrate the Divine Liturgy, it is offered "on behalf of all, and for all." As Orthodox Christians we stand against racism and bigotry. All human beings share one common identity as children of God. "There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus" (Galatian 3:28)

Members of our Parish Council are:
Greg Jankura - Vice President
Susan Davis- Council Member at Large
Carolyn Neiss - President
Marlene Melesko - Council Member at Large
Susan Egan - Treasurer
Dn Timothy Skuby - Secretary

 

Pastoral Care - General Information

Emergency Sick Calls can be made at any time. Please call Fr Steven at (860) 866-5802, when a family member is admitted to the hospital.
Anointing in Sickness: The Sacrament of Unction is available in Church, the hospital, or your home, for anyone who is sick and suffering, however severe. 
Marriages and Baptisms require early planning, scheduling and selections of sponsors (crown bearers or godparents). See Father before booking dates and reception halls!
Funerals are celebrated for practicing Orthodox Christians. Please see Father for details. The Church opposes cremation; we cannot celebrate funerals for cremations.

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Announcements

The following is a brief synopsis of the last Parish Council meeting held on 18 July 2023.

• Update from Red House Committee – The committee led by Jason Fekete provided a synopsis of their work. They provided several options to consider including, Selling the Red House, Repairing the Red House and Removing the Tenant & Doing Nothing. After reviewing each of the options, the Committee recommended that we Remove the Tenant and Sell the Red House. The Parish Council voted to accept the Committee’s recommendation. A presentation will be made to the Parish at the Parish’s Annual Meeting in November.
• Financial Report – Total income for month $10,798) exceeded the total expenses ($9,651) and we are currently $3K in the black.
• The Church roof flashing was repaired and we will be servicing the old A/C unit.
• Upcoming Chrismation – The Chrismation of Deidre Garfield will be on Sunday August 6th during the celebration of Divine Liturgy. A brunch in celebration of her Chrismation and the Feast of Transfiguration will follow.

We had applied for a grant to get an AED, however, the company underestimated the number of applicants and ran out of the available defibulators. They have put together a fund raising site for us, which is linked below. I will also place this on our Facebook and Parish web sites. Please share and/or consider making a donation. Thank you.

https://inaheartbeat.networkforgood.com/projects/197916-st-alexis-orthodox-church-aed-campaign 

OUTREACH COMMITTEE: There will be an Outreach Committee meeting downstairs following Liturgy on Sunday, July 30th, to discuss a Fall project. Everyone is welcome to join us.

School Supplies for Clinton Family Services: The Outreach Committee is again collecting school supplies for the students in the Clinton school system. The following is a list of items requested by Family Services. The last Sunday to bring in supplies is August 13. Please leave any donations on the table downstairs.
Supplies needed for Clinton Family Services:
Plastic 3 ring folders
Highlighters, multi colors
3 or 5 subject lined notebooks…No “one subject notebooks”, please
Colored pencils
Small denomination gift cards $5 or $10 to Staples would be great as well for miscellaneous items families need, like poster paper/project boards, etc. for school projects.

 

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Prayers, Intercessions and Commemorations

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Many Years! to Jason and Valery Danilack-Federer on the occasion of their anniversary; and to Douglas Kuziak on the occasion of this Birthday.

Please pray for Evelyn Leake, Melissa Josefiak and Victor Hoehnebart who are in need of God's mercy and healing; and for Kelley Hosking-Billings.

  • Pray for: All those confined to hospitals, nursing homes, and their own homes due to illness; for all those who serve in the armed forces; widows, orphans, prisoners, victims of violence, and refugees;
  • All those suffering chronic illness, financial hardship, loneliness, addictions, abuse, abandonment and despair; those who are homeless, those who are institutionalize, those who have no one to pray for them;
  • All Orthodox seminarians & families; all Orthodox monks and nuns, and all those considering monastic life; all Orthodox missionaries and their families.
  • All those who have perished due to hatred, intolerance and pestilence; all those departed this life in the hope of the Resurrection.

The Holy Transfiguration of our Lord God and Savior Jesus Christ 

 

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Parish Calendar

  • Schedule of Services and Events

    August 6 to August 14, 2023

    Sunday, August 6

    Chrismation

    Transfiguration of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ

    Holy Transfiguration

    9:30AM Divine Liturgy

    Monday, August 7

    Danilack-Federer

    Afterfeast of the Transfiguration of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ

    Tuesday, August 8

    Akathist to St Herman

    Emilian the Confessor & Bishop of Cyzikos

    8:30AM Daily Matins

    Wednesday, August 9

    The Holy Apostle Matthias

    Glorification of St. Herman

    4:30PM Open Doors

    Thursday, August 10

    Akathist to St Lawrence

    Laurence the Holy Martyr & Archdeacon of Rome

    8:30AM Daily Matins

    Friday, August 11

    Deborah Bray

    Euplus the Holy Martyr & Archdeacon of Cantania

    Isabel Chobor

    Saturday, August 12

    The Holy Martyrs Photius and Anicetus of Nicomedia

    Douglas Kuziak

    5:00PM Memorial Service

    5:30PM Great Vespers

    Sunday, August 13

    10th Sunday of Matthew

    9:30AM Divine Liturgy

    Monday, August 14

    Forefeast of the Dormition of our Most Holy Lady the Theotokos and Ever Virgin Mary

    Akathist in Honor of the Dormition

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Saints and Feasts

Transfiguration
August 06

Transfiguration of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ

Our Lord had spoken to His disciples many times not only concerning His Passion, Cross, and Death, but also concerning the coming persecutions and afflictions that they themselves would endure. Since all these evils were near at hand, but the enjoyment of good things which they hoped to receive in their stead was yet to come, our Savior desired to give them full assurance, evidently and openly, concerning that glory which is prepared for those who endure to the end. Therefore, fulfilling that which He had promised shortly before, that "there be some standing here which shall not taste of death, till they see the Son of man coming in His Kingdom" (Matt. 16:28), He took His three foremost disciples and ascended Mount Tabor, where He was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and His clothes became white as the light. Suddenly, together with this dread and marvelous effulgence of light, there appeared those pinnacles of the Prophets, Moses and Elias, who spoke with the Lord Jesus concerning His saving Passion which was about to take place. Standing before Him as reverent servants, they showed that He is the Lord of both the living and the dead, for Moses came forth from Hades, having died many centuries before, and Elias, as it were from heaven, whither he had been taken up while yet alive. After a little while a radiant cloud overshadowed them and out of the cloud they heard that same voice which had been heard at the Jordan at the Baptism of Christ, testifying to the Divinity of Jesus and saying: "This is My beloved Son, in Whom I am well-pleased; hear ye Him" (Matt. 17: 5).

Such are the marvels, truly worthy of God, celebrated in this present feast, which is an image and prefiguring of the future state of the righteous, whose splendor the Lord spoke of, saying: "Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun" (Matt. 13:43). It is because of this that the Kontakion of this Feast is said daily (when there is not a great feast) in the Service of the Typica in perpetual commemoration of the glory that will be the lot of the Saints. According to tradition, the Lord's Transfiguration came to pass forty days before His Crucifixion; this is why the Transfiguration is celebrated forty days before the Exaltation of the Cross.


Allsaint
August 08

Emilian the Confessor & Bishop of Cyzikos

This Saint was one of the illustrious Orthodox Bishops called to Constantinople by the holy Patriarch Nicephorus to defend the veneration of the holy icons against Leo the Armenian (see Mar. 8). Saint Emilian was sent into exile by Leo about the year 815, and gave up his soul to the Lord amidst many afflictions and sufferings for the sake of his confession.


Allsaint
August 09

Matthias, Apostle of the 70

After Judas by transgression fell from his apostleship (Acts 1: 25), and hanging himself out of despair ended his life with a wretched and shameful death (Matt. 27: 5), then, that the number of the Twelve not be lacking, all the disciples gathered in one place after the Ascension of the Savior (the number of men and women being 120), and they chose two men from among them, Joseph, called Barsabas, who was also surnamed Justus, and Matthias, and they set them in the midst. Then they prayed to God and cast lots, "and the lot fell upon Matthias, and he was numbered with the eleven Apostles" (Acts 1: 15-26). And thus, having taken the place of Judas, Matthias fulfilled the work of apostleship and the prophecy concerning Judas, which the Holy Spirit foretold by the mouth of David: "And his bishopric let another take" (Ps. 108(109):8). After this, it is said, Matthias preached the Gospel in Ethiopia, and completed his life there in martyrdom.


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Hymns of the Day

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The First Antiphon

Make a joyful noise to God, all the earth! Sing of His Name, give glory to His praise! (Ps. 65:1)
Refrain: Through the prayers of the Theotokos, O Savior, save us!
The voice of Your thunder was in the whirlwind; Your lightning lighted up the world; the earth trembled and shook. (Ps. 76:17b-18) (Refrain)
You are clothed with honor and majesty, Who cover Yourself with light as with a garment. (Ps. 103:2) (Refrain)
Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever and unto ages of ages. Amen. (Refrain)

The Second Antiphon

Mount Zion in the far north is the city of the great King. (Ps. 47:2)
Refrain: O Son of God, transfigured on the mountain, save us who sing to You: Alleluia!
And He brought them to the mountain of His sanctuary, this mountain which His right hand had won. (Ps. 77:58) (Refrain)
The Mount Zion which He loved, He built as His sanctuary with mighty strength. (Ps. 77:73b-74a) (Refrain)
Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever, and unto ages of ages. Amen.
(“Only-begotten Son and immortal Word of God… “)
The Third Antiphon
Those who trust in the Lord are like Mount Zion, which cannot be moved, but abides forever. (Ps. 124:1)

Tone 7 Troparion

You were transfigured on the mountain, O Christ God,
revealing Your glory to Your Disciples as far as they could bear it.
Let Your everlasting Light also shine upon us sinners,
through the prayers of the Theotokos!//
O Giver of Light, glory to You!

As the mountains are round about it, so the Lord is round about His people, from this time and forevermore. (Ps. 124:2)
Troparion of the Feast

O Lord, who shall sojourn in Your tabernacle? Who shall dwell on Your holy mountain? (Ps. 14:1)
Troparion of the Feast

Who shall ascend the mountain of the Lord? And who shall stand in His holy place? (Ps. 23:3)
Troparion of the Feast

Entrance Verse

Send out Your light and Your truth; they have led me and brought me to Your holy mountain. (Ps. 42:3)

Tone 7 Troparion

You were transfigured on the mountain, O Christ God,
revealing Your glory to Your Disciples as far as they could bear it.
Let Your everlasting Light also shine upon us sinners,
through the prayers of the Theotokos!//
O Giver of Light, glory to You!

Tone 7 Kontakion

On the mountain You were transfigured, O Christ God,
and Your Disciples beheld Your glory as far as they could see it;
so that when they would behold You crucified,
they would understand that Your suffering was voluntary,
and would proclaim to the world//
that You are truly the Radiance of the Father.

(Instead of “It is truly meet…,” we sing:)

Tone 4
Magnify, O my soul, the Lord Who was transfigured on Mount Tabor!

Your childbearing was without corruption;
God came forth from your body clothed in flesh,
and appeared on earth and dwelt among men.//
Therefore we all magnify you, O Theotokos.

Communion Hymn

O Lord, we will walk in the light of Your countenance, and will exult in Your Name forever. (Ps. 88:15)
Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia!

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Gospel and Epistle Readings

Epistle Reading

Prokeimenon. 4th Tone. Psalm 103.24,1.
O Lord, how manifold are your works. You have made all things in wisdom.
Verse: Bless the Lord, O my soul.

The reading is from St. Peter's Second Universal Letter 1:10-19.

BRETHREN, be more zealous to confirm your call and election, for if you do this you will never fall; so there will be richly provided for you an entrance into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Therefore I intend always to remind you of these things, though you know them and are established in the truth that you have. I think it right, as long as I am in this body, to arouse you by way of reminder, since I know that the putting off of my body will be soon, as our Lord Jesus Christ showed me. And I will see to it that after my departure you may be able at any time to recall these things.

For we did not follow cleverly devised myths when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty. For when he received honor and glory from God the Father and the voice was borne to him by the Majestic Glory, "This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased," we heard this voice borne from heaven, for we were with him on the holy mountain. And we have the prophetic word made more sure. You will do well to pay attention to this as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts.


Gospel Reading

Transfiguration of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ
The Reading is from Matthew 17:1-9

At that time, Jesus took with him Peter and James and John his brother, and led them up a high mountain apart. And he was transfigured before them, and his face shone like the sun, and his garments became white as light. And behold, there appeared to them Moses and Elijah, talking with him. And Peter said to Jesus, "Lord, it is well that we are here; if you wish, I will make three booths here, one for you and one for Moses and one for Elijah." He was still speaking, when lo, a bright cloud overshadowed them, and a voice from the cloud said, "This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him." When the disciples heard this, they fell on their faces, and were filled with awe. But Jesus came and touched them, saying, "Rise, and have no fear." And when they lifted up their eyes, they saw no one but Jesus only. And as they were coming down the mountain, Jesus commanded them, "Tell no one the vision, until the Son of man is raised from the dead."


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Wisdom of the Fathers

Many scripture writers will tell you that the divinity is not only invisible (Col. 1:15 et. al.) and incomprehensible, but also 'unsearchable and inscrutable' (Rom. 11:13), since there is not a trace for anyone who would reach through into the hidden depths of this infinity. And yet, on the other hand, the Good is not absolutely incommunicable to everything. By itself it generously reveals a firm, transcendent beam, granting enlightenments proportionate to each being, and thereby draws sacred minds upward to its permitted contemplation, to participation and to the state of becoming like it. What happens to those who rightly and properly make this effort is this. They do not venture toward an impossibly daring sight of God, one beyond what is duly granted them. Nor do they go tumbling downward where their own natural inclinations would take them. No. Instead they are raised firmly and unswervingly upward in the direction of the ray which enlightens them. With a love matching the illuminations granted them, they take flight, reverently, wisely, in all holiness.
St. Dionysius the Areopagite
The Divine Names, Chapter One para. 2, Pseudo-Dionysius: The Complete Works; Paulist Press pg. 50, 5th Century

The Lord does not always appear in glory to all who stand before Him. To beginners He appears in the form of a servant (Phil. 2:7); to those able to follow Him as He climbs the high mountain of His transfiguration He appears in the form of God, the form in which He existed before the world came to be (John 17:5).
St. Maximos the Confessor
Second Century on Theology, 13., 7th Century

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Beyond the Sermon

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ON THE TRANSFIGURATION

In the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.

Today our Lord's human nature was transfigured by the Holy Spirit, proceeding from the Father, Whose voice witnessed to the Son's divine nature.

We are perhaps reminded of another Feast of the Church taken from the Holy Scriptures, where the divinity of Christ was also witnessed to by the Father and the Spirit proceeding from the Father - Theophany, the Baptism of Christ. Both these feasts have a great prominence in our Church, which has been lost outside Her, where people do not believe in the words of the Holy Scripture, that the Holy Spirit proceeds from God the Father alone.

This Feast shows us firstly that the human and divine natures of Christ are united in One Person, secondly that therefore there is no unity without the Holy Spirit, and thirdly that our Saviour is Lord over Life and Death, for Moses, who died, worships Him, and Elijah, who did not die, also worships Him.

Today, however, I would like to point out an aspect of this Feast which is often overlooked: Mt Tabor, the 'mountain' where the Transfiguration occurred. This Mt Tabor is for us a figure of repentance. We note that, like the disciples, in order for us to see the transfiguration or to hope to be transfigured ourselves, we will first have to climb up, to mount, from our present condition. Otherwise any transfiguration or change for the better in our lives is impossible.

Now it is interesting that pilgrims who have been blessed to go to Mt Tabor and their photographs show us that Mt Tabor is not a mountain at all. It is rather a long, sloping hill with many obstacles, rocks and boulders, in the path of those who ascend it. And our transfiguration or salvation is like Mt Tabor. However hard we try, we will not be guaranteed salvation through a swift if arduous climb today. Salvation takes a lifetime, it is a long climb up a long slope, which is why the Lord gives most of us so long to live. Salvation is a long struggle which requires determination and perseverance, patient longsuffering.

Our spiritual progress is then not sudden and dramatic. And there are many obstacles in our path in our daily struggle. To pick up our prayerbooks in the morning and again in the evening is a struggle and there are always obstacles in our path to even this: meals to prepare, trains to catch, phones that ring. Church life is indeed made up of little sacrifices, obstacles overcome. There are prayers to say, fasts to be kept, a donation to be made, the washing-up to be done, flowers bought, the church cleaned, a choir rehearsal to go to, a vigil service to attend, a confession prepared.

As we come now towards the end of the Church's Year, we may well ask ourselves what the little sacrifices we have made since this Feast last year are . How far have we ascended up our own Mt Tabor? How have we changed over this last year? What have we done to lead a better life since then? How have we improved? What have we given God that we did not give Him before? It is this that we call progress: in what way am I a better Orthodox Christian than a year ago?

In our faith we are called to struggle daily, whatever the rocks or boulders in our way, whether they are pride or selfishness, lust or discouragement, envy or judging of others, we have to struggle to ascend our personal Mt Tabor, we have to fight for our personal transfiguration. That is why it is so important to come to confession and communion.

If we do not do this, then the Church will move away from us. For we can both go up and go down a slope. We can spiritually progress, but we can also spiritually regress. We can be transfigured by the love of God or we can be disfigured by the love of sin. And like progress, regress is not sudden and dramatic, regress too is a slope, as we say, a slippery slope.

Let us therefore take heed and give God what He really wants from us - our hearts and minds spiritually progressing.

Amen.

http://orthodoxengland.org.uk/sermtran.htm

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The Back Page

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Parish Shared Folder (for all documents, bulletins etc) - http://bit.ly/St-Alexis

The QR Code here may be used as well.

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Parish Web Site - http://www.stalexischurch.org ; calendar (https://bit.ly/StA-Calendar)

Facebook - @stalexisorthodox

Youtube Channelhttps://bit.ly/StA_Youtube

Join Zoom Meeting - http://bit.ly/St_Alexis_Zoom

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