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St. Andrew Church
Publish Date: 2020-03-29
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Climicus
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St. Andrew Church

General Information

  • Phone:
  • (973) 584-0388
  • Fax:
  • (973) 584-3573
  • Street Address:

  • 1447 Sussex Turnpike

  • Randolph, NJ 07869-1830
  • Mailing Address:

  • 1447 Sussex Turnpike

  • Randolph, NJ 07869-1830


Contact Information








Services Schedule

On Sunday we celebrate

Orthros at 8:45 am & Divine Liturgy at 10am

Weekday Orthros and Liturgies begin at 8am 

 

 


Past Bulletins


Services at St. Andrew

live-streaming the services on the church’s Facebook page

Friday 3/27

+4th Salutations @6:00 pm

SUN 3/29+ Sunday of Saint John Climacus

+ Orthros @9am & Divine Liturgy @10am 

Monday 3/30 

+Office of the Great Compline @6:00pm

Wednesday 4/1

+Pre sanctified Gifts Liturgy @6:00pm

Friday 4/3 

+Salutations: The Akathist Hymn  @6:00 pm

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Announcements

Streaming Services 

We are permitted to have our Divine Services take place within our parishes. 

However, the doors to the churches will remain closed to the faithful, as they are to be instructed to participate in the celebration of the Divine Services through the various online live streaming services that have been made available to them. 

We will be live-streaming the services on the church’s Facebook page and we will do our best to follow the Lenten Schedule of Services attached to this email. You can actually access the prayers for each service and follow along at Ages Initiative: http://www.agesinitiatives.com/dcs/public/dcs/dcs.html.  It’s a great site! 

Festival Fund

We have made the difficult decision to cancel our festival and car raffle scheduled for June to mitigate incurring the significant financial burden/risk with the current uncertain outlook. Please prayerfully consider donating to a special “Festival Fund” to help make up the significant fundraising shortfall. We are looking for 200 families to donate $1,000 extra, and if possible the donation by June 30, 2020. For more information please see letter under our News-Flyers section.

Pay Pal and WeShare are available on our Saint Andrew Website:  https://www.standrewgonj.org

 

Stewardship 

Are you an official member of Saint Andrew Church?

If you have already turned in your 2020 Pledge, we thank you.

If you have not already made your commitment to Saint Andrew church, we ask that you prayerfully consider your blessings and submit your2020 pledge today. please find Pledge form 2020 under News -Flyers-Registrations... 

Online Giving SystemWeShare click on link and follow instructions   https://standrewgonj.churchgiving.com/ our website/ or call the office

social media

We’d like to be able to better communicate with everyone on social media where appropriate.

Please Like Us / Follow Us on our church Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/pages/category/Religious-Organization/St-Andrew-Greek-Orthodox-Church-Randolph-NJ-758987230951158/ 

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Fr. John's Message

Feast of the Annunciation 2020
 
 
The Very Reverend and Reverend Clergy  Esteemed Members of the Metropolitan Council, Esteemed Members of the Parish Councils, Philoptochos Sisterhood, Faculty and Students of the Catechetical and Greek Afternoon Schools, Directors and Participants of all Youth Organizations, and all devout Orthodox Christians of the Communities of the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of New Jersey 
 
 
My Beloved in the Lord,
 
 Today we celebrate not only Gabriel’s announcement to the Theotokos that she is to bear a son, but we celebrate the very initiation of our salvation since she is to bear our Lord, God, and Savior, Jesus Christ. God did not force the Theotokos to do this, but He asked her and she willingly accepted to be the mother of our Lord. The selflessness she exhibited is something we should emulate in our lives as we strive daily to “commit ourselves and one another and our whole life to Christ our God”. When she said the words, “Behold the handmaiden of the Lord, be it unto me according to your word” (Luke 1:38), she was freely offering her entire being to God. As Orthodox Christians, we are also called upon to utilize our freedom in order to fulfill the teachings our Lord has taught us. We are called upon not to suppress our free will, but to transform our free will for the better by choosing to not only preach the Gospel, but to live the Gospel. 
 
It is also by no sheer happenstance that this day coincides with another memorable day in our history as Orthodox Christians. Today we also celebrate the independence of Greece from the yoke of the Ottoman Turks. The Annunciation and the struggle for Greek independence are indelibly connected to one another as the former initiated freedom for humanity and the latter initiated freedom for a nation. Our Greek forefathers were guided by the Hand of God to throw off the bondage of the oppressors when they began their struggle for independence by receiving the blessings of Bishop Germanos at Agia Lavra. They were guarded and guided by the Panagia who blessed them with protection as they declared independence almost two-hundred years ago on March 25th, 1821.  
 
 Thus, the Theotokos becomes for us a shining example of obedience, piety, and compassion. She accepted the responsibility of bringing the incarnate Word of God into the world, she opened to us the gates of Paradise through her childbearing, and she empathizes with us in our struggles as she herself endured the anguish of seeing her own son crucified for the life of the world. This enables us to not only see her as the Mother of God, but to call her our
mother as well. It allows us to even say, “Most Holy Theotokos, save us” since, as the Mother of God, she extends the salvation of Christ to us through her childbearing. 
 
 As we reflect on the feast of the Annunciation and praise God for the spiritual freedom it offers us, let us not forgot those who are still spiritually and politically oppressed. Let us not forget our Mother Church, the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople, which continues to have its religious freedoms denied. Let us not forget about the countless people worldwide especially in the Middle East who are being martyred daily for believing in Christ. Let us not forget the personal freedoms of the Cypriot people who are still seeking justice for the atrocities committed against them since the 1970’s. May our own freedom, spiritual and otherwise, serve to embolden them in their struggles and may we utilize our own freedom to advocate on their behalf and on behalf of all the oppressed throughout the world. 
 
 Praying that the Theotokos, who willingly contained the uncontainable in her womb and who was the initiator of our freedom, intercede before her Son and her God for our salvation, I remain 
      With Paternal Love and Blessings, 
 
 
† E V A N G E L O S Metropolitan of New Jersey
 

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Daily Calendar

we will be live-streaming the services on the church’s Facebook page

FRI  3/27     

 

6:00 +Salutations Live streaming: see St. Andrew Face book page

 

 

SAT 3/28        

Faith Kitchen: PHILOPTOCHOS/ will make dinners to go (packaged)

 

SUN 3/29   

8:45am Orthros & 10am Divine Liturgy

+Sunday of St. John Climacus

Canceled GID Parade Fifth Ave in  NYC 

Canceled Coffee Hour

 

MON 3/30

6:00 PM +Office of the Great Compline – Live streaming: see St. Andrew Face book page

 

TUE 3/31

Canceled 7-9 pm HES /Adult Greek Language Class

 

WED 4/1

6:00 PM Pre-Sanctified Gifts Liturgy- -Live streaming: see St. Andrew Face book p

 

THU 4/2

4:30 HAS CLASSES REMOTE

Canceled | 6:30 Greek Dance |7pm GOYA Greek Dance

 

FRI 4/3 

6:00 +Salutations the Akathist – Live streaming: see St. Andrew Face book page

Canceled 10am Little Angels Play Group in Room 103

Canceled 10:30am Great Lenten Study

Canceled Great Lenten Study

 

SAT 4/4  

 

SUN 4/5

Sunday of St. Mary of Egypt -8:45am Orthros & 10am Divine Liturgy Live streaming: see St. Andrew Face book page

Canceled  @12:45pm Caregiver’s Workshop in Room 102

 

4/11 SATURDAY OF LAZARUS 

 

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News - Flyers - Registrations - Other

    President's Message

    President's Message

    update 3-24-20


    Pastoral Message

    Pastoral Message

    3/23/20 from His Eminence, Metropolitan Evangelos of New Jersey concerning the COVID-19 pandemic


    lenten services

    lenten services

    Lenten services streaming Live on FB | MONDAYS AT 6:00PM 3/23, 3/30, 4/6 The Great Compline | WEDNESDAYS AT 6:00 PM ON 3/18, 4/1, 4/8 The Liturgy of the Pre-Sanctified Gifts | FRIDAYS AT 6: 00PM ON 3/20, 3/27, 4/3 AKATHIST - Salutations or Akathist to the Theotokos


    Divine Services

    Divine Services

    March April 2020: will be streamed live on FB for the time being


    Festival Fund

    Festival Fund

    We have made the difficult decision to cancel our festival and car raffle Please prayerfully consider donating to a special “Festival Fund” to help make up the significant fundraising shortfall.


    Pledge Form 2020

    Pledge Form 2020

    2ND STEWARDSHIP SUNDAY ON MARCH 8TH | If you have not already made your commitment to Saint Andrew church, we ask that you prayerfully consider your blessings and submit your2020 pledge today. We need everyone’s participation to fulfill our obligations.


    Prepare for Lent

    Prepare for Lent

    FIVE WAYS TO PREPARE FOR GREAT AND HOLY LENT


    Philoptochos

    Philoptochos

    Scholarship Applications and all supporting documents must be postmarked on or before May 15, 2020. The Scholarship winners will be announced on June 7, 2020.


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Prayer List

If you would like us to remember you or your loved one in our prayers, please contact the office. 973-584-0388

Names will be kept on this list for approximately 3 months. Please resubmit Names if needed.   Fr. John will pray for the Names above during the Proskomide “Offering of gifts” during the first part of the Divine Liturgy when our priest prepares the mystical gifts of bread and wine. Please keep these names in your prayers as well.

Nancy, Brian, Thomas, Vasilios,  Evanthia, Ramon, Athanasios, Angeliki, Christian, Olga,  Demitra, Antonia, Aikaterini, John, Stavroula, Anna Christina, Manny, Mary, George, Susan, Dimitrios, Peter, Michael, Ryan, Ioannis, Monica, Katerina, Tasia, Rose, Christina,Andrew, Andrew, Margaret, Eleni, Paraskevi, Panagotis, Maria, Caroline, Demetrios, Konstantinos, Susan, Afrodite, Cassandra, Aristea, Konstantinos, George, Mary, Holly, Gary, Roye, Cristos, Panagiota, Anna, Panagiotis, John, Nicos, Hannah, Christos, Theoseva, George, Genevieve, Christine, Anna, Louis, Marilyn, Suriana, Antonios, John, Maria, Dimitry Elias, Evangelia, George, Kyriaki, John, Rose, Evmorfia, Fr. Konstantine, Fr. Demetri, Prz Spyridoula, Eugenia, Constantinos, Eftychia, Kyzoula, Lukas, Zoe, Spyridoula, Maria, Eugenia, Alexa, Eleni, Vasiliki, Rosemary, Corinne, Sophia, Anastasia, Pamela, Brian, Brandon, Irene, Eleutherios, Panayioti, William, Kyriaki 

Prayer for a Sick Person:

Heavenly Father, physician of our souls and bodies, who have sent Your only-begotten Son and our Lord Jesus Christ to heal every sickness and infirmity, visit and heal (me) Your servant from all physical and spiritual ailments through the grace of Your Christ. Grant (me) patience in this sickness, strength of body and spirit, and recovery of health.  Lord, You have taught us through Your word to pray for each other that we may be healed.  I pray that You heal (me) as Your servant and grant (me) the gift of complete health. For You are the source of healing and to You I give glory, Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Amen

 

 
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Gospel and Epistle Readings

Matins Gospel Reading

Eighth Orthros Gospel
The Reading is from John 20:11-18

At that time, Mary stood weeping outside the tomb, and as she wept she stooped to look into the tomb; and she saw two angels in white, sitting where the body of Jesus had lain, one at the head and one at the feet. They said to her, "Woman, why are you weeping?" She said to them, "Because they have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid Him." Saying this, she turned round and saw Jesus standing, but she did not know that it was Jesus. Jesus said to her, "Woman, why are you weeping? Whom do you seek?" Supposing Him to be the gardener, she said to Him, "Sir, if you have carried Him away, tell me where you have laid Him, and I will take Him away." Jesus said to her, "Mary." She turned and said to him in Hebrew, "Rabboni!" (which means Teacher). Jesus said to her, "Do not hold me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father; but go to my brethren and say to them, I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God." Mary Magdalene went and said to the disciples, "I have seen the Lord"; and she told them that He had said these things to her.

Eighth Orthros Gospel
Κατὰ Ἰωάννην 20:11-18

Τῷ καιρῷ ἐκείνῳ, Μαρία δὲ εἱστήκει πρὸς τῷ μνημείῳ κλαίουσα ἔξω. ὡς οὖν ἔκλαιε, παρέκυψεν εἰς τὸ μνημεῖον καὶ θεωρεῖ δύο ἀγγέλους ἐν λευκοῖς καθεζομένους, ἕνα πρὸς τῇ κεφαλῇ καὶ ἕνα πρὸς τοῖς ποσίν, ὅπου ἔκειτο τὸ σῶμα τοῦ ᾿Ιησοῦ. καὶ λέγουσιν αὐτῇ ἐκεῖνοι· γύναι, τί κλαίεις; λέγει αὐτοῖς· ὅτι ἦραν τὸν Κύριόν μου, καὶ οὐκ οἶδα ποῦ ἔθηκαν αὐτόν. καὶ ταῦτα εἰποῦσα ἐστράφη εἰς τὰ ὀπίσω, καὶ θεωρεῖ τὸν ᾿Ιησοῦν ἑστῶτα, καὶ οὐκ ᾔδει ὅτι ᾿Ιησοῦς ἐστι. λέγει αὐτῇ ὁ ᾿Ιησοῦς· γύναι, τί κλαίεις; τίνα ζητεῖς; ἐκείνη δοκοῦσα ὅτι ὁ κηπουρός ἐστι, λέγει αὐτῷ· κύριε, εἰ σὺ ἐβάστασας αὐτόν, εἰπέ μοι ποῦ ἔθηκας αὐτόν, κἀγὼ αὐτὸν ἀρῶ. λέγει αὐτῇ ὁ ᾿Ιησοῦς· Μαρία. στραφεῖσα ἐκείνη λέγει αὐτῷ· ῥαββουνί, ὃ λέγεται, διδάσκαλε. λέγει αὐτῇ ὁ ᾿Ιησοῦς· μή μου ἅπτου· οὔπω γὰρ ἀναβέβηκα πρὸς τὸν πατέρα μου· πορεύου δὲ πρὸς τοὺς ἀδελφούς μου καὶ εἰπὲ αὐτοῖς· ἀναβαίνω πρὸς τὸν πατέρα μου καὶ πατέρα ὑμῶν, καὶ Θεόν μου καὶ Θεὸν ὑμῶν. ἔρχεται Μαρία ἡ Μαγδαληνὴ ἀπαγγέλλουσα τοῖς μαθηταῖς ὅτι ἑώρακε τὸν Κύριον, καὶ ταῦτα εἶπεν αὐτῇ.


Epistle Reading

Prokeimenon. Plagal Fourth Mode. Psalm 75.11,1.
Make your vows to the Lord our God and perform them.
Verse: God is known in Judah; his name is great in Israel.

The reading is from St. Paul's Letter to the Hebrews 6:13-20.

BRETHREN, when God made a promise to Abraham, since he had no one greater by whom to swear, he swore to himself, saying, "Surely I will bless you and multiply you." And thus Abraham, having patiently endured, obtained the promise. Men indeed swear by a greater than themselves, and in all their disputes an oath is final for confirmation. So when God desired to show more convincingly to the heirs of the promise the unchangeable character of his purpose, he interposed with an oath, so that through two unchangeable things, in which it is impossible that God should prove false, we who have fled for refuge might have strong encouragement to seize the hope set before us. We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner shrine behind the curtain, where Jesus has gone as a forerunner on our behalf, having become a high priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek.

Προκείμενον. Plagal Fourth Mode. ΨΑΛΜΟΙ 75.11,1.
Εὔξασθε καὶ ἀπόδοτε Κυρίῳ τῷ Θεῷ ἡμῶν.
Στίχ. Γνωστὸς ἐν τῇ Ἰουδαίᾳ ὁ Θεός, ἐν τῷ Ἰσραὴλ μέγα τὸ ὄνομα αὐτοῦ.

τὸ Ἀνάγνωσμα Πρὸς Ἑβραίους 6:13-20.

Ἀδελφοί, τῷ Ἀβραὰμ ἐπαγγειλάμενος ὁ θεός, ἐπεὶ κατʼ οὐδενὸς εἶχεν μείζονος ὀμόσαι, ὤμοσεν καθʼ ἑαυτοῦ, λέγων, Ἦ μὴν εὐλογῶν εὐλογήσω σε, καὶ πληθύνων πληθυνῶ σε. Καὶ οὕτως μακροθυμήσας ἐπέτυχεν τῆς ἐπαγγελίας. Ἄνθρωποι μὲν γὰρ κατὰ τοῦ μείζονος ὀμνύουσιν, καὶ πάσης αὐτοῖς ἀντιλογίας πέρας εἰς βεβαίωσιν ὁ ὅρκος. Ἐν ᾧ περισσότερον βουλόμενος ὁ θεὸς ἐπιδεῖξαι τοῖς κληρονόμοις τῆς ἐπαγγελίας τὸ ἀμετάθετον τῆς βουλῆς αὐτοῦ, ἐμεσίτευσεν ὅρκῳ, ἵνα διὰ δύο πραγμάτων ἀμεταθέτων, ἐν οἷς ἀδύνατον ψεύσασθαι θεόν, ἰσχυρὰν παράκλησιν ἔχωμεν οἱ καταφυγόντες κρατῆσαι τῆς προκειμένης ἐλπίδος· ἣν ὡς ἄγκυραν ἔχομεν τῆς ψυχῆς ἀσφαλῆ τε καὶ βεβαίαν, καὶ εἰσερχομένην εἰς τὸ ἐσώτερον τοῦ καταπετάσματος· ὅπου πρόδρομος ὑπὲρ ἡμῶν εἰσῆλθεν Ἰησοῦς, κατὰ τὴν τάξιν Μελχισεδὲκ ἀρχιερεὺς γενόμενος εἰς τὸν αἰῶνα.


Gospel Reading

Sunday of St. John Climacus
The Reading is from Mark 9:17-31

At that time, a man came to Jesus kneeling and saying: "Teacher, I brought my son to you, for he has a dumb spirit; and wherever it seizes him it dashes him down; and he foams and grinds his teeth and becomes rigid; and I asked your disciples to cast it out, and they were not able." And he answered them, "O faithless generation, how long am I to be with you? How long am I to bear with you? Bring him to me." And they brought the boy to him; and when the spirit saw him, immediately it convulsed the boy, and he fell on the ground and rolled about, foaming at the mouth. And Jesus asked his father, "How long has he had this?" And he said, "From childhood. And it has often cast him into the fire and into the water, to destroy him; but if you can do anything, have pity on us and help us." And Jesus said to him, "If you can! All things are possible to him who believes." Immediately the father of the child cried out and said, "I believe; help my unbelief!" And when Jesus saw that a crowd came running together, he rebuked the unclean spirit, saying to it, "You dumb and deaf spirit, I command you, come out of him, and never enter him again." And after crying out and convulsing him terribly, it came out, and the boy was like a corpse; so that most of them said, "He is dead." But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him up, and he arose. And when he had entered the house, his disciples asked him privately, "Why could we not cast it out?" And he said to them, "This kind cannot be driven out by anything but prayer and fasting." They went on from there and passed through Galilee. And he would not have any one know it; for he was teaching his disciples, saying to them, "The Son of man will be delivered into the hands of men, and they will kill him; and when he is killed, after three days he will rise."

Sunday of St. John Climacus
Κατὰ Μᾶρκον 9:17-31

Τῷ καιρῷ ἐκείνῳ, ἄνθρωπός τις προσῆλθε τῷ Ἰησοῦ λέγων, διδάσκαλε, ἤνεγκα τὸν υἱόν μου πρός σε, ἔχοντα πνεῦμα ἄλαλον. καὶ ὅπου ἂν αὐτὸν καταλάβῃ, ῥήσσει αὐτόν, καὶ ἀφρίζει καὶ τρίζει τοὺς ὀδόντας αὐτοῦ, καὶ ξηραίνεται· καὶ εἶπον τοῖς μαθηταῖς σου ἵνα αὐτὸ ἐκβάλωσι, καὶ οὐκ ἴσχυσαν. ὁ δὲ ἀποκριθεὶς αὐτῷ λέγει· ὦ γενεὰ ἄπιστος, ἕως πότε πρὸς ὑμᾶς ἔσομαι; ἕως πότε ἀνέξομαι ὑμῶν; φέρετε αὐτὸν πρός με. καὶ ἤνεγκαν αὐτὸν πρὸς αὐτόν. καὶ ἰδὼν αὐτὸν εὐθέως τὸ πνεῦμα ἐσπάραξεν αὐτόν, καὶ πεσὼν ἐπὶ τῆς γῆς ἐκυλίετο ἀφρίζων. καὶ ἐπηρώτησε τὸν πατέρα αὐτοῦ· πόσος χρόνος ἐστὶν ὡς τοῦτο γέγονεν αὐτῷ; ὁ δὲ εἶπε· παιδιόθεν. καὶ πολλάκις αὐτὸν καὶ εἰς πῦρ ἔβαλε καὶ εἰς ὕδατα, ἵνα ἀπολέσῃ αὐτόν· ἀλλ᾿ εἴ τι δύνασαι, βοήθησον ἡμῖν σπλαγχνισθεὶς ἐφ᾿ ἡμᾶς. ὁ δὲ ᾿Ιησοῦς εἶπεν αὐτῷ τὸ εἰ δύνασαι πιστεῦσαι, πάντα δυνατὰ τῷ πιστεύοντι. καὶ εὐθέως κράξας ὁ πατὴρ τοῦ παιδίου μετὰ δακρύων ἔλεγε· πιστεύω, κύριε· βοήθει μου τῇ ἀπιστίᾳ. ἰδὼν δὲ ὁ ᾿Ιησοῦς ὅτι ἐπισυντρέχει ὄχλος, ἐπετίμησε τῷ πνεύματι τῷ ἀκαθάρτῳ λέγων αὐτῷ· τὸ πνεῦμα τὸ ἄλαλον καὶ κωφόν, ἐγώ σοι ἐπιτάσσω, ἔξελθε ἐξ αὐτοῦ καὶ μηκέτι εἰσέλθῃς εἰς αὐτόν. καὶ κράξαν καὶ πολλὰ σπαράξαν αὐτὸν ἐξῆλθε, καὶ ἐγένετο ὡσεὶ νεκρός, ὥστε πολλοὺς λέγειν ὅτι ἀπέθανεν. ὁ δὲ ᾿Ιησοῦς κρατήσας αὐτὸν τῆς χειρὸς ἤγειρεν αὐτόν, καὶ ἀνέστη. Καὶ εἰσελθόντα αὐτὸν εἰς οἶκον οἱ μαθηταὶ αὐτοῦ ἐπηρώτων αὐτὸν κατ᾿ ἰδίαν, ὅτι ἡμεῖς οὐκ ἠδυνήθημεν ἐκβαλεῖν αὐτό. καὶ εἶπεν αὐτοῖς· τοῦτο τὸ γένος ἐν οὐδενὶ δύναται ἐξελθεῖν εἰ μὴ ἐν προσευχῇ καὶ νηστείᾳ. Καὶ ἐκεῖθεν ἐξελθόντες παρεπορεύοντο διὰ τῆς Γαλιλαίας, καὶ οὐκ ἤθελεν ἵνα τις γνῷ· ἐδίδασκε γὰρ τοὺς μαθητὰς αὐτοῦ καὶ ἔλεγεν αὐτοῖς ὅτι ὁ υἱὸς τοῦ ἀνθρώπου παραδίδοται εἰς χεῖρας ἀνθρώπων, καὶ ἀποκτενοῦσιν αὐτόν, καὶ ἀποκτανθεὶς τῇ τρίτῃ ἡμέρᾳ ἀναστήσεται.


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Saints and Feasts

Climicus
March 29

Sunday of St. John Climacus

The memory of this Saint is celebrated on March 30, where his biography may be found. He is celebrated today because his book, The Ladder of Divine Ascent, is a sure guide to the ascetic life, written by a great man of prayer experienced in all forms of the monastic polity; it teaches the seeker after salvation how to lay a sound foundation for his struggles, how to detect and war against each of the passions, how to avoid the snares laid by the demons, and how to rise from the rudimental virtues to the heights of Godlike love and humility. It is held in such high esteem that it is universally read in its entirety in monasteries during the Great Fast.


Allsaint
March 29

Mark, Bishop of Arethusa

Saint Mark was Bishop of Arethusa in Syria. In the days of Saint Constantine the Great, Saint Mark, moved with divine zeal, destroyed a temple of the idols and raised up a church in its stead. When Julian the Apostate reigned, in 361, as the pagans were now able to avenge the destruction of their temple, Saint Mark, giving way to wrath, hid himself; but when he saw that others were being taken on his account, he gave himself up. Having no regard to his old age, they stripped him and beat his whole body, cast him into filthy sewers, and pulling him out, had children prick him with their iron writing-pens. Then they put him into a basket, smeared him with honey and a kind of relish of pickled fish, and hung him up under the burning sun to be devoured by bees and wasps. But because he bore this so nobly, his enemies repented, and unloosed him.


Allsaint
March 29

Martyr Cyril the Deacon and Those with him

أخبر عنه ثيودوريتوس انه كان شماس كنيسة بعلبك. فلما صدر امر ملكي لدكّ هيكل فينوس في بعلبك انقض كيرللس على المكان بحماسة شديدة وحرّض الناس على هدّمه فحقد عليه الوثنيون حقدا شديدا لكنهم كظموا غيظهم إلى وقت مؤات. فلما انقلبت الأيام وحلت ساعة الظلمة انتقموا منه وممن أمكنهم الوصول إليهم، راهبات وخدام كنيسة. فخلال العام 362م اقتحم الوثنيون ديرا للراهبات واستاقوا مَن فيه إلى الموضع حيث كان هيكل فينس. هناك عرّضوهن لدناءات وحقارات جمة.

أما كيرللس فقد انقض عليه الضالون وجرروه في الأوحال وضربوه ضربا مميتا لا هوادة فيه. ثم فتحوا صدره واستأصلوا كبده وأكلوه نيئا كالحيوانات المفترسة. لكن لم تبق جريمتهم دون عقاب طويلا. فإن أسنان الذين ارتكبوها، على ما ورد، تفتّتت وأكل الدود ألسنة البعض وفقد آخرون البصر.

وفي عسقلان وغزة، وهما مدينتان فلسطينيتان، كانت الوثنية شرسة. هناك أيضا أمسك الوثنيون خداما كنسيّين ونسوة مكرّسات وانتزعوا أحشاءهم وجعلوا في أقفاص صدورهم شعيرا وألقوها رعيا للخنازير.

كذلك فتح المهاجمون في سبسطيا صندوق بقايا القديس يوحنا السابق المجيد وألقوها في النار ثم ذرّوا رمادها في كل اتجاه.

رغم كل شيء، رغم هذه الفظائع الرهيبة لم ينجح لا يوليانوس ولا الوثنيون في استعادة عبادة الأوثان وبقي الشعب ، في أكثريته، غير مبال بها لدرجة ان يوليانوس لما رغب في إقامة عيد كبير لأبولون في أنطاكية فوجئ ان الهيكل كان فارغا إلا منه ومن حاشيته فيما كان أهل المدينة خارجا يسخرون منه.


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April 01

Mary of Egypt

When Mary was only twelve years old, she left her parents and departed to Alexandria, where she lived a depraved life for seventeen years. Then, moved by curiosity, she went with many pilgrims to Jerusalem, that she might see the Exaltation of the venerable Cross. Even in the Holy City she gave herself over to every kind of licentiousness and drew many into the depth of perdition. Desiring to go into the church on the day of the Exaltation of the Cross, time and again she perceived a certain invisible power preventing her entrance, whereas the multitude of people about her entered unhindered. Therefore, wounded in heart by this, she decided to change her way of life and reconcile herself to God by means of repentance. Invoking our Lady the Theotokos as her protectress, she asked her to open the way for her to worship the Cross, and vowed that she would renounce the world. And thus, returning once again to the church, she entered easily. When she had worshipped the precious Wood, she departed that same day from Jerusalem and passed over the Jordan. She went into the inner wilderness and for forty-seven years lived a most harsh manner of life, surpassing human strength; alone, she prayed to God alone. Toward the end of her life, she met a certain hermit named Zosimas, and she related to him her life from the beginning. She requested of him to bring her the immaculate Mysteries that she might partake of them. According to her request, he did this the following year on Holy and Great Thursday. One year after this, Zosimas again went thither and found her dead, laid upon the ground, and letters written in the sand near her which said: "Abba Zosimas, bury here the body of wretched Mary. I died on the very day I partook of the immaculate Mysteries. Pray for me." Her death is reckoned by some to have taken place in 378, by some, in 437, and by others, in 522. She is commemorated also on the Fifth Sunday of Great Lent. Her life was recorded by Saint Sophronius of Jerusalem.


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April 04

5th Saturday of Lent: The Akathist Hymn

About the year 626, the Persians, Avars, and Slavs came with a great host and besieged the imperial city of Constantinople while the Emperor Heraclius and the main body of the Byzantine army were absent in the East. Enemy ships filled the sea, especially the Golden Horn, and on land the adversaries were ready for attack with foot-soldiers, horses, and engines of war. Though the citizens courageously withstood them, yet they were few in number and would be unable to repulse the attack of such a great host. Hence, they could not count on any other means of salvation, except the protection of the Theotokos. And truly, suddenly a violent tempest broke up all the ships and submerged them, and the bodies of the invaders were cast out near the Blachernae quarter of the city where the famous Church of the Theotokos stood. Taking courage from this, the people went forth from the city and repulsed the remaining forces, who fled out of fear. In 673, the city was miraculously delivered yet again, this time from an invasion of the Arabs. Then in 717-718, led by the Saracen general Maslamah, the Arab fleet laid siege once more to the city. The numerical superiority of the enemy was so overwhelming that the fall of the Imperial City seemed imminent. But then the Mother of God, together with a multitude of the angelic hosts, appeared suddenly over the city walls. The enemy forces, struck with terror and thrown into a panic at this apparition, fled in disarray. Soon after this, the Arab fleet was utterly destroyed by a terrible storm in the Aegean Sea on the eve of the Annunciation, March 24, 718. Thenceforth, a special "feast of victory and of thanksgiving" was dedicated to celebrate and commemorate these benefactions. In this magnificent service, the Akathist Hymn is prominent and holds the place of honour. It appears that even before the occasion of the enemy assaults mentioned above, the Akathist Hymn was already in use as the prescribed Service for the Feast of the Annunciation, together with the kontakion, "When the bodiless one learned the secret command," which has the Annunciation as its theme. It was only on the occasion of the great miracle wrought for the Christian populace of the Imperial City on the eve of the Annunciation in 718 that the hymn "To thee, the Champion Leader" was composed, most likely by Saint Germanus, Patriarch of Constantinople.

Historians have ascribed the Akathist Hymn to Patriarch Sergius of Constantinople (638), to Saint George the Confessor, Bishop of Pisidia (818), or even to Saint Photius the Great (891), all of whom lived either at the time of or after the above-mentioned sieges. However, it appears most likely from its language, content, and style that the true composer of the Akathist Hymn is Saint Romanus the Melodist (6th century).


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April 05

Sunday of St. Mary of Egypt

The memory of this Saint is celebrated on April 1, where her life is recorded. Since the end of the holy Forty Days is drawing nigh, it has been appointed for this day also, so that if we think it hard to practice a little abstinence forty days, we might be roused by the heroism of her who fasted in the wilderness forty-seven years; and also that the great loving-kindness of God, and His readiness to receive the repentant, might be demonstrated in very deed.


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Hymns of the Day

Resurrectional Apolytikion in the Plagal Fourth Mode

From on high didst Thou descend, O Compassionate One; to burial of three days hast Thou submitted that Thou mightest free us from our passions. O our Life and Resurrection, Lord, glory be to Thee.
Ἐξ ὕψους κατῆλθες ὁ εὔσπλαγχνος, ταφὴν καταδέξω τριήμερον, ἵνα ἡμᾶς ἐλευθερώσῃς τῶν παθῶν. Ἡ ζωὴ καὶ ἡ Ἀνάστασις ἡμῶν, Κύριε δόξα σοι.

Apolytikion for Sun. of St. John Climacus in the Plagal Fourth Mode

With the streams of thy tears, thou didst cultivate the barrenness of the desert; and by thy sighings from the depths,thou didst bear fruit a hundredfold in labours; and thou becamest a luminary, shining with miracles upon the world, O John our righteous Father. Intercede with Christ God that our souls be saved.
Ταίς τών δακρύων σου ροαίς, τής ερήμου τό άγονον εγεώργησας, καί τοίς εκ βάθους στεναγμοίς, εις εκατόν τούς πόνους εκαρποφόρησας, καί γέγονας φωστήρ, τή οικουμένη λάμπων τοίς θαύμασι, Ιωάννη Πατήρ ημών, Όσιε, Πρέσβευε Χριστώ τώ Θεώ, σωθήναι τάς ψυχάς ημών.

Apolytikion for the Church in the First Mode

Hymn of the Apostle St. Andrew: As first of the Apostles to receive the call, and very brother of the prince of them, intercede O Andrew, with the Master of all of us, peace to all the world to grant, and to our souls His great mercy.

Απολυτίκιο του Αποστόλου Ανδρέου: Ως των Αποσόλων πρωτόκλητος, και του κορυφαίου αυτάδελφος, τον Δεσπότην των όλων Ανδρέα ικέτευε, ειρήνην τη οικουμένη δωρήσασθαι, και ταις ψυχαίς ημών το μέγα έλεος

Seasonal Kontakion in the Plagal Fourth 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!"
Τὴ ὑπερμάχω στρατηγῶ τὰ νικητήρια, ὡς λυτρωθεῖσα τῶν δεινῶν εὐχαριστήρια, ἀναγράφω σοὶ ἡ Πόλις σου Θεοτόκε, Ἀλλ' ὡς ἔχουσα τὸ κράτος ἀπροσμάχητον, ἐκ παντοίων μὲ κινδύνων ἐλευθέρωσον, ἵνα κράζω σοί, Χαῖρε νύμφη ἀνύμφευτε.
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Wisdom of the Fathers

Seest thou how He now proceeds to lay beforehand in them the foundation of His doctrine about fasting? ... See, at any rate, how many blessings spring from them both. For he that is praying as he ought, and fasting, hath not many wants, and he that hath not many wants, cannot be covetous; ...
St. John Chrysostom
Homily 57 on Matthew 17,4,5. B#54, pp.355,356., 4th Century

... he that is not covetous, will be also more disposed for almsgiving. He that fasts is light, and winged, and prays with wakefulness, and quenches his wicked lusts, and propitiates God, and humbles his soul when lifted up. Therefore even the apostles were almost always fasting.
St. John Chrysostom
Homily 57 on Matthew 17,4,5. B#54, pp.355,356., 4th Century

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