St. Mary Orthodox Church

Cambridge, MA

Update for the week Friday, October 8, through Thursday, October 14, 2010


TEEN SOYO APPLE PICKING – Teen SOYO will be hosting the teens of St. George of West Roxbury during liturgy and the two groups will be going Apple Picking after liturgy together this Sunday,  October 10th. If you are interested in going or have questions, please email Nadia Abuelezam:  

OCF COFFEEHOUSE– The Boston area Orthodox Christian Fellowship is sponsoring a  Coffee House at Holy Resurrection Church, 62 Harvard Av., Allston on Friday, October 8, 2010 at 9:00 pm.  Admission: $2 for the soup kitchen, or bring cans or clothing in good condition.  For more info contact christinadandresen@gmail.comor see Resurrection Coffeehouse on Facebook .

20/40 BOSTON GIVES BACK – Join a young adult group of  20-40 year olds in the New England Diocese on Saturday, October 9th  for a morning of service.  We will meet at St. George, West Roxbury at 9:30 am and prepare food in the kitchen, then we will go out together into the city and give out food and love to those who need it.  Please let Elisabeth Lourie know if you are interested in participating – 617-323-0323 or

ST.  MARY PAWTUCKET CENTENNIAL– St. Mary, Pawtucket RI, will be celebrating their 100th anniversary the weekend of October 8-10, with Metropolitan PHILIP presiding.  Events include a “Walk Down Memory Lane,” a Grand Hafli (Saturday, in Parish Hall, $40 per person),  Hierarchical Divine Liturgy, and a Grand Banquet ( Sunday, at Providence Marriott Downtown, $85 per person).   Combo ticket:  $120 per person. Call the Church Office at 401-726-1202 for tickets.


WORLD FOOD DAY – World Food Day is October 16.  The Antiochian Archdiocese is one of the sponsoring organizations for this event, designed to increase awareness, understanding and informed, year-around action to alleviate hunger.  37 million people in America need our help!  See  for more information.

CANNED FOOD DRIVE– The annual FOOD FOR HUNGRY PEOPLE Canned Food Drive will be held  October 10, 2010  – December 26, 2010.  Bring  in your canned goods to the Church and place them in the large, blue plastic containers outside the Church Office – they will be distributed to local food pantries in our area. Since 1984, we have collected over 3,281,200 pounds of food.

ORTHODOX INSTITUTE FOR CHRISTIAN EDUCATION- The Orthodox Institute welcomes all Christians who love icons to join them at the Antiochian Village  November 4-7. The topic of the Institute will be  Icons:  Windows to Heaven, and keynote speaker will be Frederica Mathewes-Green. For information and registration form see


YOUTH MONTH– October is Youth Month throughout the Antiochian Archdiocese. In our parish young people will be reading the Epistle, holding the Communion cloth and Holy Bread baskets, taking the collection, and giving sermonettes. 

INQUIRERS’ CLASS – The Saint Ignatius of Antioch Catechetical Group (the Inquirer's Class) is held from 9:00 am until 10:00  am  in the St. Mary library,  from September through May. This class is for non-Orthodox persons who wish to learn more about the Orthodox Faith or who are contemplating being received into the Church.  If you are interested please contact David Vermette at dgvermette@gmail.comor 617-776-5635.  A brochure is available at the bengarri.  Late registration is still available.

PARISH COUNCIL– The next meeting of the Parish Council will be on Wednesday, October 13, at 7:30 pm.

HELP MAKE SFEEHA AND KIBBEH– Please come to the church on next Saturday, October 16, starting at 9:00 am to help make meat pies with the Women's Club.   Lots of help will be needed – young and old, women and men are all welcome - and it's always lots of fun.  If you placed an order for Sfeeha, you can pick it up on Sunday, October 17 .

Also, if you can, come at 9:00 Friday morning, October 22, to help the Women’s Club cook Kihbbeh.  Pick-up date  for  Kibbeh is Sunday, October 24.

COME SEE THE MESSIAH - Join friends from St. Mary’s for the Handel and Haydn Society’s  annual performance of Handel’s Messiah, on Sunday afternoon, December 5, at 3:00 p.m.  Tickets are just $25 – even less if we have a big enough group. We will carpool to Symphony Hall after Liturgy and have lunch together before the concert.  Those who have done this before have thoroughly enjoyed it - not only do we hear a world-class orchestra and chorus with famous soloists singing glorious words (taken directly from the Bible), but we also have an opportunity to spend time getting to know some fellow parishioners we normally may not encounter.  Good seats go fast - please contact Melissa Nassiff at mnassiff@gmail.comby next Sunday, October 17, or order your own tickets online at

DIOCESAN FELLOWSHIP DAY– The Antiochian Women, Fellowship of  St. John the Divine and Teen SOYO groups of the Diocese of Worcester and New England will meet here at St. Mary on Saturday, October 30, 2010 at 10:30 am.

WOMEN’S CLUB BOOK DISCUSSION -  The Women's Club members (and anyone else who'd like to join us) are reading The Help by Kathryn Stockett.  Read the book  and join us on Tuesday, November 9 (not October 5 as previously announced)  for an enjoyable evening of discussion,  refreshments and fellowship! Book discussion will begin at 7:30 pm.

ON-LINE STEWARDSHIP SIGN-UP - There will be a table at Coffee Hour for the next few Sundays for those who would like to try eGive.  We’ll have a laptop to help walk you through the process on the spot.  All you need to bring is a sample check from your checking account.  Please e-mail Jamil Samara ( or Charlie Marge ( if you have any questions.

NEW ALTAR CLOTHS- The Women’s Club,  recently given the task of providing much-needed new altar cloths for the Holy Place,  would like to thank two very special parishioners for making this project come to fruition:  Bob Kowalikfor selecting the fabric and trim,  andGeorgette Deyabfor her expertise in stitching and sewing, creating something exceptional for our place of worship.

HELPING HANDS FOR BONNIE– If you know Bonnie Michal and would like to help her (with visits, meals, driving, etc,) as she goes through chemotherapy, you can sign on to “Bonnie’s Friends and Helpers” through  Lotsa Helping Hands at

ATTENTION STUDENTS– If you are a new or returning college or university student, please fill out a green College Student Address Form on the Bengarri (desk in the Narthex) so that we have your current addresses and information and you can receive announcements about activities at St. Mary's and on campus.  See Charlie Marge if you have questions.

COFFEE HOUR VOLUNTEERS NEEDED – Please sign up to provide a coffee hour – it can be as simple as coffee, juice, and cookies.  Lots of Sundays are available in the Fall, and 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

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  September through June, and at 9:30 am during the summer.

This ministry is 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!

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
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 are needed each week in the food pantry at St Paul's Roman Catholic Church in Harvard Square, Saturday mornings from 9:30-11:45. 

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.



COFFEE HOUR – Azeb Mitiku and family


Saturday, October 9:  No Vespers at St. Mary

Sunday, October 10:  Orthros 8:45 am,  Divine Liturgy 10:00  am;  no Church School (Columbus Day

Epistle:  St. Paul's Letter to the Galatians 1:11-19
…  For you have heard of my former life in Judaism, how I persecuted the church of God violently and tried to destroy it; and I advanced in Judaism beyond many of my own age among my people, so extremely zealous was I for the traditions of my fathers.

Gospel:  Luke 7:11-16
… And when the Lord saw [a widow whose only son had died], he had compassion on her and said to her, "Do not weep." And he came and touched the bier, and … he said, "Young man, I say to you, arise." And the dead man sat up, and began to speak. And he gave him to his mother.


Saturday, October 16:  Great Vespers 5:00 pm

Sunday, October 17:  Orthros 8:45 am,  Divine Liturgy 10:00  am;  Church School lesson 4

Saturday, October 23:  Great Vespers 5:00 pm

Sunday, October 24:  Orthros 8:45 am,  Divine Liturgy 10:00  am;  Church School Lesson 5


The value of compassion cannot be overemphasized. Anyone can criticize. It takes a true believer to be compassionate. No greater burden can be borne by an individual than to know no one cares or understands.
   - Arthur H. Stainback

 To love as Christ loves, with the love of God who is Love, is the chief commandment for human beings according to Christianity.  It can only be accomplished by God’s grace, by faith. It is not humanly possible. It is done by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.
   - Fr. Thomas Hopko

Tradition is the living faith of the dead; traditionalism is the dead faith of the living.
   - Jaroslav Pelikan, The Vindication of Tradition

There is no deeper pathos in the spiritual life of man than the cruelty of righteous people. If any one idea dominates the teachings of Jesus, it is his opposition to the self-righteousness of the righteous.
   - Reinhold Niebuhr