St. Alexis of Wilkes-Barre Orthodox Church
Publish Date: 2024-02-04
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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



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- President
Sharon Hanson - Member at Large
 Luba Martins - 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.



Soup-er Bowl Sunday:  Bring your favorite homemade chili or chowder for our very own Soup-er Bowl for brunch on Sunday, February 11th.  Each entry will have a “voting cup” next to it in which the parishioners can vote with any amount of cash for their favorite dish (it’s encouraged to vote more than once).  All donations will benefit IOCC…International Orthodox Christian Charities:  Worldwide Relief…emergency relief & development programs to those in need worldwide, without discrimination.  If you can’t decide on your favorite, there will be a donation box just for cash or checks made out to:  IOCC                                        Who will win the “football trophy” this year?!                                                            See Sue Egan or Marlene Melesko with any questions.

The following is a brief synopsis of the last Parish Council meeting held on 21 February 2023.

2024 Pledge Analysis - To date we have received pledges in the amount of $102,700 which is approximately $10,000 over what we passed in our 2024 budget.
Establishment of Roles of Officers -The slate for our Parish Council is as follows:
President – Susan Davis
Vice President – Greg Jankura
Treasurer – Susan Eagan
Secretary – Fr Deacon Timothy
Member at Large #1 – Luba
Member at Large #2 – Sharon
Red House Update – Carolyn Neiss has stepped in as the Coordinator of the Red House
Clergy Retreat for the CT Deanery - We will be hosting this event on Friday 1 March.


Prayers, Intercessions and Commemorations


Many Years! to Christine Hoehnebart, Gabrielle Niess and Christine Schauble (Brubaker) on the occasion of their birthdays.

Please pray for Sarah, Aaron, Evelyn and Victor who are in need of God's mercy and healing.

  • 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.

Please let Fr. Steven know via email if you have more names for which to pray.

  • Departed: Fr Anthony, Mat Elizabeth, Kenneth, Fr Michael
  • Clergy and their families: Mat. Ann, Fr Sergei, and Mat Nancy
  • ​Catechumen: Robert, Abbie, Matthew, Joseph, Mary, Kevin and Lynn
  • Individuals and Families: Susan, Luba, Suzanne, Gail Galina Evelyn, Rosemary, John, Lucille, Karen, Oleg, Lucia, Victor, Melissa, Christine, Sebastian, Olga, Daniel & Dayna, Branislava, Alton, Richard, Kristen
  • Birthdays and Name’s Days this Month: Aaron Hosking, Natalie Kurcharski (ND), Gail Kuziak, Dn Timothy (ND), 
  • Anniversaries this Month: 
  • ​Expecting and Newborn: Anastasia and her unborn child
  • ​Traveling: 
  • ​Sick and those in distress: Maria, Brian, Fr Vasily, Katy, Fr Sergei

Afterfeast of the Meeting. Ven. Isidore of Pelusium (ca. 436-440). Rt. Blv. George, Great Prince of Vladimir (1238). Ven. Kirill (Cyril) the Wonderworker, Abbot of Novoezérsk (Novgorod—1532). Ven. Abraham and Coprius, of Pechenga (Vologdá—15th c.). Martyr Jadorus (3rd c.). Hieromartyr Abramius, Bishop of Arbela in Assyria (ca. 344-347). Ven. Nicholas the Confessor, Abbot of Studion (868).

Again we pray for those who have lost their lives because of the wars in Ukraine and in the Middle East: that the Lord our God may look upon them with mercy, and give them rest where there is neither sickness, or sorrow, but life everlasting.
Again we pray for mercy, life, peace, health, salvation, for those who are suffering, wounded, grieving, or displaced because of the wars in Ukraine and in the Middle East.
Again we pray for a cessation of the hostilities against Ukraine and the Middle East, and that reconciliation and peace will flourish there, we pray thee, hearken and have mercy.


Parish Calendar

  • Schedule of Services and Events

    February 4 to February 12, 2024

    Sunday, February 4

    15th Sunday of Matthew

    9:30AM Divine Liturgy

    Monday, February 5

    Agatha the Martyr

    Tuesday, February 6

    Photius the Great, Patriarch of Constantinople

    8:00AM Akathist to Holy Photius

    8:30AM Daily Matins

    7:00PM Catechumens

    Wednesday, February 7

    ☦️ Parthenius, Bishop of Lampsacus

    4:30PM Open Doors

    Thursday, February 8

    Theodore the Commander & Great Martyr

    Gabrielle Niess

    Christine Hoehnebart

    8:30AM Daily Matins

    6:30PM [CT Deanery] Deanery Meeting follow-ups

    Friday, February 9

    ☦️ Leavetaking of the Presentation of Our Lord and Savior in the Temple

    Christine Schauble

    Saturday, February 10

    Hieromartyr Haralambos

    5:30PM Great Vespers

    Sunday, February 11

    16th Sunday of Matthew

    Sunday of the Canaanite

    9:30AM Divine Liturgy

    Monday, February 12

    Vera Martin

    Meletius, Archbishop of Antioch

    Robert Pavlik


Saints and Feasts

February 04

Isidore of Pelusium

This Saint was from Alexandria and was a disciple of Saint John Chrysostom. He struggled in asceticism in a monastery at Mount Pelusium, and became abbot of the monks struggling in that monastery. He wrote a great many epistles replete with divine grace, wisdom, and much profit. Over 2,000 of them are preserved in Volume 78 of Migne's Patrologia Graeca (PG 78:177-1646); according to some, he wrote over 3,000 epistles, according to others, 10,000. He reposed on February 4, 440.

February 05

Agatha the Martyr

This Martyr, who was from Panormus (that is, Palermo) or perhaps Catania of Sicily, was a most comely and chaste virgin. After many exceedingly harsh torments, she gave up her spirit in prison at Catania in 251, because she did not consent to the seductions of Quintian, the Governor of Sicily. At her burial, an Angel placed a stone tablet on her grave inscribed with the words, "A righteous mind, self-determining, honor from God, the deliverance of her father-land." The following year this was fulfilled when Mount Etna erupted, spewing forth violent fire from which Catania was manifestly saved by Saint Agatha's prayers. The holy Martyr Agatha, the protectress and chief patroness of Sicily, is, with perhaps the exception of Saint Agnes of Rome, the most highly venerated Virgin Martyr of the West. Saint Damasus, Pope of Rome, and Saint Ambrose of Milan both wrote in praise of her.

February 06

Photios, Patriarch of Constantinople

As for the thrice-blessed Photius, the great and most resplendent Father and teacher of the Church, the Confessor of the Faith and Equal to the Apostles, he lived during the years of the emperors Michael (the son of Theophilus), Basil the Macedonian, and Leo his son. He was the son of pious parents, Sergius and Irene, who suffered for the Faith under the Iconoclast Emperor Theophilus; he was also a nephew of Saint Tarasius, Patriarch of Constantinople (see Feb. 25). He was born in Constantinople, where he excelled in the foremost imperial ministries, while ever practicing a virtuous and godly life. An upright and honorable man of singular learning and erudition, he was raised to the apostolic, ecumenical, and patriarchal throne of Constantinople in the year 857.

The many struggles that this thrice-blessed one undertook for the Orthodox Faith against the Manichaeans, the Iconoclasts, and other heretics, and the attacks and assaults that he endured from Nicholas I, the haughty and ambitious Pope of Rome, and the great persecutions and distresses he suffered, are beyond number. Contending against the Latin error of the filioque, that is, the doctrine that the Holy Spirit proceeds from both the Father and the Son, he demonstrated clearly with his Mystagogy on the Holy Spirit how the filioque destroys the unity and equality of the Trinity. He has left us many theological writings, panegyric homilies, and epistles, including one to Boris, the Sovereign of Bulgaria, in which he set forth for him the history and teachings of the Seven Ecumenical Councils. Having tended the Church of Christ in holiness and in an evangelical manner, and with fervent zeal having rooted out all the tares of every alien teaching, he departed to the Lord in the Monastery of the Armenians on February 6, 891.

February 06

Barsonouphios the Great

Saint Barsanuphius the Great, who was from Egypt, and his disciple, Saint John the Prophet, struggled in very strict reclusion during the sixth century at the monastery of Abba Seridus at Gaza of Palestine, and were endowed with amazing gifts of prophecy and spiritual discernment. They are mentioned by Saint Dorotheus of Gaza, their disciple, in his writings. Many of the counsels they sent to Christians who wrote to them are preserved in the book which bears their names. Once certain of the Fathers besought Saint Barsanuphius to pray that God stay His wrath and spare the world. Saint Barsanuphius wrote back that there were "three men perfect before God," whose prayers met at the throne of God and protected the whole world; to them it had been revealed that the wrath of God would not last long. These three, he said, were "John of Rome, Elias of Corinth, and another in the diocese of Jerusalem," concealing the name of the last, since it was himself.

February 08

Theodore the Commander & Great Martyr

The holy Martyr Theodore was from Euchaita of Galatia and dwelt in Heraclea of Pontus. He was a renowned commander in the military, and the report came to the Emperor Licinius that he was a Christian and abominated the idols. Licinius therefore sent certain men to him from Nicomedia, to honor him and ask him to appear before him. Through them, however, Saint Theodore sent back a message that it was necessary for various reasons, that Licinius come to Heraclea. Licinius, seeing in this a hope of turning Saint Theodore away from Christ did as was asked of him.

When the Emperor came to Heraclea, Saint Theodore met him with honor, and the Emperor in turn gave Theodore his hand, believing that through him he would be able to draw the Christians to the worship of his idols. Seated upon his throne in the midst of the people, he publicly bade Theodore offer sacrifice to the gods. But Theodore asked that the emperor entrust him with the most venerable of his gods, those of gold and silver, that he might take them home and himself attend upon them that evening, promising that the following day he would honor them in public. The Emperor, filled with joy at these tidings, gave command that Theodore's request be fulfilled.

When the Saint had taken the idols home, he broke them in pieces and distributed the gold and silver to the poor by night. The next day a centurion named Maxentius told Licinius that he had seen a pauper pass by carrying the head of Artemis. Saint Theodore, far from repenting of this, confessed Christ boldly. Licinius, in an uncontainable fury, had the Saint put to many torments, then crucified. While upon the cross, the holy Martyr was further tormented -- his privy parts were cut off, he was shot with arrows, his eyes were put out, and he was left on the cross to die. The next day Licinius sent men to take his corpse and cast it into the sea; but they found the Saint alive and perfectly whole. Through this, many believed in Christ. Seeing his own men turning to Christ, and the city in an uproar, Licinius had Theodore beheaded, about the year 320. The Saint's holy relics were returned to his ancestral home on June 8, which is also a feast of the Great Martyr Theodore.

February 08

Zechariah the Prophet

The Prophet Zacharias was the son of Barachias, and a contemporary of the Prophet Aggeus (Dec. 16). In the days of the Babylonian captivity, he prophesied, as it says, in the book of Ezra, "to the Jews that were in Judah and Jerusalem" (Ezra 5: 1); he aided Zerubbabel in the rebuilding of the Temple in Jerusalem. In the book of Ezra he is called "Zacharias the son of Addo (or Iddo)" but in his own prophetic book he is called more fully "Zacharias, the son of Barachias, the son of Addo the Prophet" (Zach. 1:1). When the captives returned from Babylon, he came to dwell in Jerusalem in his old age. His book of prophecy is divided into fourteen chapters and has the eleventh place among the books of the minor Prophets; his name means "Yah is renowned." Sozomen reports that under the Emperor Honorius, Zacharias' holy relics were found in Eleutheropolis of Palestine. The Prophet appeared in a dream to a certain Calemerus, telling him where he would find his tomb. His body was found to be incorrupt (Eccl. Hist., Book IX, 17).


Gospel and Epistle Readings

Gospel Reading

The Reading is from Matthew 25:14-30

The Lord said this parable: "A man going on a journey called his servants and entrusted to them his property; to one he gave five talents, to another two, to another one, to each according to his ability. Then he went away. He who had received the five talents went at once and traded with them; and he made five talents more. So also, he who had the two talents made two talents more. But he who had received the one talent went and dug in the ground and hid his master's money. Now after a long time the master of those servants came and settled accounts with them. And he who had received the five talents came forward, bringing five talents more, saying, 'Master, you delivered to me five talents; here I have made five talents more.' His master said to him, 'Well done, good and faithful servant; you have been faithful over a little, I will set you over much; enter into the joy of your master.' And he also who had the two talents came forward, saying, 'Master, you delivered to me two talents; here I have made two talents more.' His master said to him, 'Well done, good and faithful servant; you have been faithful over a little, I will set you over much; enter into the joy of your master.' He also who had received the one talent came forward, saying, 'Master, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you did not winnow; so I was afraid, and I went and hid your talent in the ground. Here you have what is yours.' But his master answered him, 'You wicked and slothful servant! You knew that I reap where I have not sowed, and gather where I have not winnowed? Then you ought to have invested my money with the bankers, and at my coming I should have received what was my own with interest. So take the talent from him, and give it to him who has the ten talents. For to every one who has will more be given, and he will have abundance; but from him who has not, even what he has will be taken away. And cast the worthless servant into the outer darkness; there men will weep and gnash their teeth." As he said these things he cried out: "He who has ears to hear, let him hear!"


Wisdom of the Fathers

Those who entrust themselves to their spiritual Father with simplicity, walk with much certainty and are restful (carried as they are on their Elder’s shoulders), and reach Paradise joyfully. On the contrary, the disciples who try to escape obedience suffer like the lively young calves that constantly pull their rope left and right until they remove the stake. Then they run like crazy outside the garden and get seriously entangled in the bushes, and if no one reaches them in time, God forbid, they are strangled.
Elder Paisios of the Holy Mountain (+1994)
Calendar Company, Orthodox. Wisdom of the Divine Philosophers: Volume One . Orthodox Calendar Company. Kindle Edition.

Obedience is the burial of the will and the resurrection of humility. Obedience is to give up one’s own judgment but to do it with wise consultation. It is very costly, beginning to die to the will and the senses. To continue dying is hard but not indefinitely so. In the end all aversion stops and absolute peace takes command.
St. John Climacus
Calendar Company, Orthodox. Wisdom of the Divine Philosophers: Volume One . Orthodox Calendar Company. Kindle Edition.


The Faith We Hold


Metropolitan Anthony of Sourozh
23 August, 1987

In the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost.
After a week which we spend in the twilight of the world, where the powers of good and the powers of evil are in contest, when we are called to be the light of the world, the salt that prevents its corruption, a living message that God has come, that victory over evil is won, and all hopes are possible, indeed all things are in the power of the Lord Jesus Christ who is our strength — after a whole week in this twilight we come to church, and it is a moment when two things should happen.
It is a moment when we re-dedicate ourselves to God, because we bring at the same time in the Holy Liturgy two kinds of gifts. On the one hand, the offering of our souls and bodies, the gift of ourselves which should be unreserved, which we give according to our strength, but a strength that should grow day after day by the exercise of loyalty and faithfulness to God. And we also bring to God a sacrifice, an offering so holy and so perfect, the life and the death of the Lord Jesus Christ, His Resurrection and His Ascension into Heaven, and the vision of what we are called to be — all of us together with all things created. Because it is not only mankind whom God has assumed in Christ through the Incarnation — it is all things visible and invisible; the invisible through His Divinity in the human soul, and the visible by His Incarnation, by God taking flesh and becoming mysteriously and wonderfully akin to all that is material, visible, tangible. All creation, not only saints and sinners, but all things created can look at Christ's Body and rejoice because in Him they can see themselves in glory.
When we come to God we expect a gift of grace, the power of life to be poured into us so that we should become truly new creatures; not only creatures of flesh and blood, not only created beings standing face to face with their Creator but also creatures, pervaded by the power and the presence, the true communion with God which is given to us in the Sacraments.
It is only to the extent to which we bring ourselves as an offering (let it be earthen vessels open to receive things Holy) that we can receive these Holy things. In the prayer that precedes the consecration of the Holy Gifts the priest says: «Renew us who pray to Thee, and make this bread the Body of Christ, and this cup — the Blood of Christ». It is only to the extent to which we give ourselves to God to be filled, to the extent which we empty ourselves of all things contrary to Him, in intention, at least in the struggle which should be ours, that we can receive the gift.
But this gift is not given to us alone; it is not given to us that we should hug it, possess it, delight in it: it is given to us in the way in which a lamp is lit, in which a fire is lighted, in which the truth is given. Thanks be to God — we are not a body of people, prisoners of our buildings and our small frail Christian society! We are indeed sent into the world to be God's own witnesses, through Communion to the Body and Blood of Christ to be His incarnate presence. When we receive Communion we expect all things from God, but He also expects all things from us.
Let us ponder on this. Let us receive with an open heart and an open mind, with all our being, what God gives us, not in order to possess it but in order to give it, to give it as generously as God gives Himself: life and death, our joy and our sorrow, our broken-heartedness and our hopes — all to be given in God's Name to anyone who needs it. Then we shall have fulfilled the Apostle's call: «Carry one another's burdens, and so you shall have fulfilled the law of Christ». Amen.


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