St. Mary Orthodox Church

Cambridge, MA

Update for the week Friday, August 13, through Thursday, August 19, 2010


PATRONAL FEAST– This Sunday is the feast of the Dormition of the Blessed Theotokos, patron saint of St. Mary Church.  Worship will begin with Orthros at 8:15 am and Lamentations at 9:30, followed by Festal Divine Liturgy.  After Liturgy there will be a celebratory coffee hour, provided by Charles Arbeely.


LEBANESE FESTIVAL - Our Lady of the Cedars of Lebanon Church, at 61 Rockland St., Jamaica Plain, is holding a Lebanese festival this Sunday, August 15, from 12:00 to 6:00 pm.  Plenty of good and fun; kid’s menu available.  Music featuring Mitchell Kaltsunas & Ensemble.

OFFICE CLOSED- No one will be in the Church Office between 8/5 thru 8/23, while our parish secretary is on vacation; but telephone messages will be checked at least once per day.  (Fr. Antony can also be reached by e-mail at

TEEN SOYO OUTING- The teens of St. Mary Pawtucket invite Diocese Teen SOYO members, advisors, clergy and all others who would like to attend, to a Pawtucket Red Sox Game on Monday, August 30.  Meet at 6:45 pm for the 7:05 game at  McCoy Stadium, 1 Columbus Avenue, Pawtucket, RI 02860.  Tickets are $10;  please bring cash the day of the game.  Notify Liz & Erick by Sunday, August 22nd that you will be attending.

ANTIOCHIAN VILLAGE:  ST. THEKLA PILGRIMAGE – Theannual St. Thekla pilgrimage will take place over the weekend of September 24 – 26, 2010at Antiochian Village.  This year’s theme will be  Ascending the Mountain:  It’s a Family Road Trip.   Presiding Hierarch will be  Rt. Rev. Bishop THOMAS, with Mother Alexandra, Abbess of the Convent of St. Thekla, as an additional speaker.  For more information, visit www.antiochianvillage.orgor contact the office at the Antiochian Village 724-238-3677.  See brochure on Church Bulletin Board.  Registration and payment deadline:  September 1, 2010.


HELP NEEDED: FOOD PANTRY COORDINATORTwo to four volunteers from St. Mary are scheduled to help each week in the food pantry at St Paul's Roman Catholic Church in Harvard Square, Saturday mornings from 9:30-11:45.  If you are interested in helping, please volunteer to be the new coordinator - contact outgoing coordinator Christian Alcala at, or (617) 876-5684. Our grateful thanks to Christian for serving in this capacity for the past several years.

WOMEN’S CLUB SUMMER READING -  This summer Women's Club members (and anyone else who'd like to join us) will be reading The Help by Kathryn Stockett. Read the book over the summer, and join us in the fall, on a date to be announced, for an enjoyable evening of discussion,  refreshments and fellowship!

DEFIBRILLATOR TRAINING- Due to a generous donation, the church is about to install a new Automated External Defibrillator (AED) machine downstairs in the church hall, and plans on hosting a professional training session for the AED machine in the fall for our parishioners.  This training would be at no cost to parishioners and would last approximately 30-45 minutes.

In the alternative, the Parish council is requesting feedback from parishioners about interest in a combination CPR and AED class wherein attendees could receive their certification in these areas.  This class would carry a small cost, would be sanctioned by the Red Cross or other entity, and would last about 4-6 hours. We need to know how many parishioners are interested in order to schedule the training. Please see Raymond Sayeg ( or Eric Straghalis ( if you are interested in these classes.  

COFFEE HOUR VOLUNTEERS NEEDED – Please sign up to provide a coffee hour – it can be as simple as coffee, juice, and cookies, and it’s easier now when summer attendance is lighter.  Plenty of help is available! Signup sheets are on the bulletin board downstairs outside the Hall, or call Marilyn in the office at 617-547-1234 or

SEEKING VIDEO STREAMING VOLUNTEERS – The video streaming ministry has been a great success!  A special thank you to Erick Straghalis,  Marc Patacchiola, and Nadia Abuelezam who have been instrumental in making this possible. 
     Marc and Erick are looking for more volunteers who can help set up the streaming service prior to Liturgy on Sunday mornings and potentially during other events (speakers, vespers, etc.).  Volunteers would rotate weekly, taking turns setting up the camera, computer and microphones each week.  Some technical expertise may be required, but training will be provided. If you are interested, please contact Erick Straghalis (   Thank you!

CARE PACKAGES FOR “OUR” MARINE– Fr. Antony's "spiritual son" Scott is still in the Marines,  and has been deployed to Afghanistan.  The Fellowship of St. John the Divine is once more helping collect items for care packages for him and his fellow Marines. Thanks to the generosity of St. Mary parishioners, the Fellowship has been able to send  several  care packages already. We hope to send a box every month or so, so please continue to donate the items he needs.  He has especially asked for Gatorade powder (dark blue kind if possible), Tuna, Beef jerky, Sunflower seeds, Sour skittles, Protein bars, and Non perishable food.
     A box has been set up outside the church offices for your donations, and we would also welcome monetary contributions to help with postage, shopping, etc.  - make checks payable to Fellowship of St. John the Divine or to St. Mary Church (earmarked FSJD), and give them to any member of the FSJD Steering Committee (Tiffany Conroy, Mike Decerbo, Melissa or Peter Nassiff, Socrates Deligeorges or Steve Walker), or mail them to the Church. Thank you for your caring concern and prayers for Scott and his fellow Marines!

STREAMING VIDEO- Divine Liturgy at St. Mary is broadcast live every week!  Do come to church…  but if you can’t, then join us on your computer. To see live broadcasts go to  Divine Liturgy starts at 10:00 am every Sunday through the end of June, and at 9:30 during the summer.

FIRST IN, LAST OUT– Please do not park in the small lot behind the church unless you intend to stay through the end of coffee hour. The only way out is the single lane driveway.  Please pull all the way in to the parking space, and please do not block the driveway – if the lot is full, you can park on the street or in the lot at the corner of Prospect Street and Bishop Allen Drive.


There are a number of ways you can help the Church, your fellow worshippers and those in need.  Consider serving in one of these ways:

Liturgical Service - Each Sunday, members of the congregation are needed to read the Epistle and assist during Communionby holding the Communion Cloths and Holy Bread Baskets.  All Orthodox Christians in the Parish are welcome and encouraged to participate. We usually need one Epistle reader and eight people to hold cloths and baskets.  If you would like to read the Epistle or assist during Communion, please contact Jeff Wasilko, 781-820-0882,

Coffee Hour – People are needed every week to provide coffee, juice and cookies, or more if desired, and set it up Sunday morning. To sign up for an available Sunday, please put your name on the signup sheet on the bulletin board outside the Hall or call Marilyn Robbat in the Parish Office and she will write your name in. If you need any help with figuring out what to bring or do, check the list below the signup sheet (also printed in the Bulletin), or ask Marilyn at secretary@stmaryorthodoxchurch.orgor 617-547-1234.

Holy Resurrection Open Doors - The Holy Resurrection Open Door Meal Ministry in Allston needs volunteers every Monday evening (there is a special need in the summer).  The official hours of the project are 4:30 pm-7:30 pm, but it is fine to come anytime and leave any time.  Best times would be 5:30-5:45 to 7:15-7:30 pm.  You can serve meals, coffee and tea to the people who arrive for dinner (6-7 pm) or just stay behind the scenes doing set-up and clean-up.  It is a very rewarding, hands-on, face-to-face way to serve the community with (mostly) other Orthodox Christians—we even chant the Our Father together before the meal begins. Church info can be found at    Questions? Please contact Liz Straghalis  phone 617-974-5005,  or Tiffany Conroy at

St Paul’s Food Pantry - Two to four volunteers help each week in the food pantry at St Paul's Roman Catholic Church in Harvard Square, Saturday mornings from 9:30-11:45.  If you are interested in helping, please volunteer to be the new coordinator -  contact outgoing coordinator Christian Alcala at, or (617) 876-5684.

Food and Clothing – Holy Resurrection in Allston takes donations of non-perishable food items and clothing to distribute at the Open Door Ministry on Monday evenings.  You can bring your donations by on Monday nights between 4:30 pm and 7:30 pm or contact Tiffany Conroy,, for more information.

"As you did it to one of the least of these my brethren, you did it to me," says our Lord.


LITURGICAL SERVICE – Epistle: Mary Long;  Communion cloth and bread:Linda Arnold, Maggie Arnold, Jonathan Hill,  and others.

If you would like to read the Epistle or assist during Communion through the rest of the summer, please contact Jeff Wasilko,   If you have held the bread or communion cloth before, and see an empty space, feel free to step in and help.

COFFEE HOUR – Charles Arbeely


Saturday, August 14:  Great Vespers 5:00 pm

Sunday, August 15, Feast of the Dormition of the Blessed Theotokos:  Orthros 8:15 am,  Lamentations 9:30 am,  followed by Festal Divine Liturgy for the  Feast of the Dormition of the Blessed Theotokos
Epistle:  St. Paul's First Letter to the Philippians 2:5-11
Brethren, have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.

Gospel:  Luke 10:38-43, 11:27-28
At that time, Jesus entered a village; and a woman called Martha received him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord's feet and listened to his teaching. But Martha was distracted with much serving; …  the Lord answered her, "Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things; one thing is needful. Mary has chosen the good portion, which shall not be taken away from her."


Saturday, August 21:  NO Vespers at St. Mary
Sunday, August 22:
  Orthros  8:15 am,  Divine Liturgy  9:30 am  (Summer hours)
Sunday, September 5
:  Regular hours resume:  Orthros 8:45 am,  Divine Liturgy 10:00  am
Sunday, September 12:
  Church School registration
Sunday, September 19:
  Church School classes start


Neither death nor the tomb could hold the Mother of God, our watchful Protectress and our unfailing hope.  Since she is the Mother of Life, Christ who dwelt in her ever-virginal womb lifted her up to eternal life.
   - Kontakion for the Dormition

The Virgin Mary is the most merciful sovereign of all the sons and daughters of men, as the Daughter of God the Father, Who is love; the Mother of God the Word, of our love; the chosen bride of the Holy Spirit, Who is love consubstantial with the Father and the Word. How can we do otherwise than have recourse to such a sovereign and expect to receive all spiritual blessings from Her?
   - St. John of Kronstadt, My Life in Christ

Humility is the ornament of the godhead. The Word clothed Himself in it when He became man. By it He lived among us in the flesh…And anyone who wraps himself in it truly makes himself like Him who came down from on high and clothed His grandeur and glory in humility, lest the world should dissolve at the sight of Him. Indeed, the created world would not have been able to contemplate Him if He had not taken it to Himself and in this way lived in it.
   - St. Isaac of Nineveh, Ascetic Treatises

May Christ our true God, Who emptied Himself, leaving the bosom of the Father to assume our mortal nature and deify it, then ascended into heaven to sit at the right hand of our God and Father; Who sent the Holy Spirit, co-eternal divine and of equal power and glory, upon His holy disciples and Apostles, thus illuminating them, and through them the whole universe, through the prayers of His all-holy and blameless holy Mother, the holy, glorious, illustrious, divine heralds and Spirit-bearing Apostles, and of all the Saints, have mercy on us and save us in His goodness.
   - The Dismissal from Kneeling Vespers of Pentecost