Update for the week Friday, December 31, 2010 through Thursday, January 6, 2011

Update for the week Friday, December 31, 2010 through Thursday, January 6, 2011



PLEDGE YOUR SUPPORT FOR ST. MARY- Pledge Cards have been mailed out.  You may make your pledge for 2011 either by returning the Pledge Card to the church or by filling out the Pledge Form on our web site (www.stmaryorthodoxchurch.org). Please do so by  Friday, December 31, 2010.


THEOPHANY– Evening Liturgy for the Feast of Theophany will be Wednesday, January 5, at 6:30.

A second Great Blessing of the Waters will take place on Sunday, January 9;  Church School students will remain upstairs for that.

ST. MARY ANTIOCHIAN VILLAGE CAMPAIGN - On Sunday, January 23,  we will kick off St. Mary’s Antiochian Village Campaign.  Join us after church for a down-home BBQ to "experience" the Village summer camping program and support the parish’s goal to provide financial support for all our children and teens interested in attending. Fixin’s are being donated by The Firehouse BBQ in Amesbury, MA, so funds raised can go to support our kids. More information to come. If you'd like to participate or have any questions, contact Jennifer Nahas at tjnahas@comcast.net or call 617-547-9065.

CHINESE NEW YEAR BREAKFAST– Join the FSJD for the 2011 Chinese New Year Missions Breakfast, to benefit the Chinese Translation Project via the Orthodox Fellowship of All Saints of China (OFASC), on Sunday, February 6, 2011.  Suggested minimum donation is $5.00 per adult.  RSVP to Nelson Mitrophan Chin at mitrophan@orthodox.cn  or sign up on the sheet at the Bengarri by Wednesday, February 2.

COFFEE HOUR– The next two Sundays, January 9th and 16th, are available if you would like to host a coffee hour.  Sign up on the bulletin board downstairs.

AED CERTIFICATION CARDS – Certification cards have arrived for those who participated in the Heartsaver AED training.  Please see Barbara Shoop for your card.


NO FASTING AFTER NATIVITY - From Christmas Day until January 4th, inclusive, there is a general dispensation from all fasting.

BLESSING OF HOMES – Fr. Antony will be blessing homes after Epiphany (January 6)  and between Pascha (April 24) and Pentecost (June 12).  We bless homes to reveal the home as what God created it to be, a way to heaven; to rid the home of every evil;  to show that the family is a small church unit in Christ; to consecrate the home and all activity in it to God; and to fill the home and all who live in it with the fullness of God.  To schedule the blessing of your home, please use the form in the weekly Bulletin or call the church office at 617 547-1234.

RETREATS AT ANTIOCHIAN VILLAGE– Several retreats and conferences at the Village are coming up in the next couple of months:
Marriage Preparation Weekend January 14-17, 2011;  and
Marriage Enrichment Retreat February 18-20.
Winter Camp @ Antiochian Village,   Theme: “We Need a Hero,”  February 18-21
 For more information see http://antiochianvillage.org/center/special_events/upcoming.html

PARISH MEETING – The Annual Meeting of the Parish will be held Sunday, January 30, after Liturgy.  The meeting is expected to be brief, and all members are urged to attend.  Snow date is Sunday, February 13.

MID-WINTER MEETINGS – The annual mid-winter meetings of the Fellowship of St. John the Divine,  Antiochian Women, and Teen SOYO of the Archdiocese will be held at Antiochian Village Friday through Sunday, February 4 - 6, 2011.

PRE-LENTEN RETREAT– The Antiochian Women of the Diocese invite you to a Pre-Lenten Retreat on Saturday, February 12, 2011, at St. George Church in Norwood. Featured speaker will be Presvytera Maria Mossaides, Executive Director of Cambridge Family and Children’s Service and one of Massachusetts Law Weekly’s “Top Women of Law.” Her topic will be “The Reluctant Presvytera: My Life’s Journey in the Church.” To register, call Erin Kimemtt at 781-775-0789. All are welcome. 

PLEDGE ENVELOPES- Pledge envelopes are available for pickup on the table downstairs outside the hall.  Look for your name in alphabetical order.  Remember:  if you have chosen to pay periodically or through eGive, you have not been assigned a weekly envelope. 

Please e-mail Jamil Samara (jamil@jamilsamara.com) or Charlie Marge (marge@alum.mit.edu) if you have any questions about giving to the Church through eGive.

CROSSROAD- Attention High School Juniors & Seniors:  CrossRoad is an exciting summer vocation exploration program designed to help students discern their life callings and match their God-given gifts with the needs of the world.  CrossRoad session dates for summer 2011 are June 18-28 (first session) and July 5-15 (second session). For more information and to download an application:  www.crossroad.hchc.edu

PRISON MINISTRY– If you would like to find out more about Prison Ministry at St. Mary Orthodox Church, please subscribe to the mailing list at http://groups.google.com/group/ocpm-concord

COOKBOOK- Saint Peter the Apostle Antiochian Orthodox Church Women’s group in Pomona, CA has put together a cookbook, with 298 recipes, to raise funds for their new kitchen.  A downloadable version is available for $2.50 at EBooks.  See the poster on the Bulletin Board.

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 2011, 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 secretary@stmaryorthodoxchurch.org

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 tohttps://www.stmaryorthodoxchurch.org/livestream. Divine Liturgy starts at 10:00 am every Sunday September through June, and at 9:30 am during the summer. 

If you are interested in helping, please contact Erick Straghalis (estraghalis@gmail.com). 

PROTECT YOUR VALUABLES  - Please do not leave valuables unattended in the Church Hall or Cloak Room.

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 six 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, jeffw@smoe.org

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.org or 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  http://hrocboston.org.    Questions? Please contact Liz Straghalis at liztutella@gmail.com  phone 617-974-5005,  or Tiffany Conroy at trattus1@gmail.com.

St Paul’s Food Pantry - 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, trattus1@gmail.com, for more information.

Canned Goods-The annual Food For Hungry People canned food drive  is  held  October through  December each year.  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.

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


LITURGICAL SERVICE  - Epistle: David Vermette;  Bread and Communion Cloth:  James and Brooke Wilcox and others

COFFEE HOUR – The Sayeg Family

Saturday, January 1:  No Vespers

Sunday, January 2:  Orthros 8:45 am,  Divine Liturgy 10:00  am;  no Church School

SCRIPTURE READINGS for January 2, the Sunday before Epiphany:
Epistle:  St. Paul's Second Letter to Timothy 4:5-8
I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that Day, and not only to me but also to all who have loved his appearing.

Gospel:  Mark 1:1-8
As it is written in Isaiah the prophet, "Behold, I send my messenger before your face, who shall prepare your way; the voice of one crying in the wilderness: prepare the way of the Lord, make his paths straight" John the baptizer appeared in the wilderness, preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.

Wednesday, January 5:  Evening Liturgy for the Feast of the Theophany 6:30 pm
SCRIPTURE READINGS for December 25, The Nativity of Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ:
Epistle:  St. Paul's Letter to the Galatians 4:4-7
When the time had fully come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons.

Gospel:  Matthew 2:1-12
Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the East came to Jerusalem, saying, "Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we have seen his star in the East, and have come to worship him." … When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy; and going into the house they saw the child with Mary his mother, and they fell down and worshiped him. Then, opening their treasures, they offered him gifts, gold and frankincense and myrrh.

Sunday, December 26, the Sunday after the Nativity of Christ:  Orthros 8:45 am,  Divine Liturgy 10:00  am;  no Church School


Saturday, January 8:  Great Vespers 5:00 pm

Sunday, January 9: Orthros 8:45 am,  Divine Liturgy 10:00  am;  2nd Blessing of the Waters (Church School students remain upstairs)

Saturday, January 15:  Great Vespers 5:00 pm

Sunday, January 16: Orthros 8:45 am,  Divine Liturgy 10:00  am;  Church School lesson 11

Sunday, January 23:  Orthros 8:45 am,  Divine Liturgy 10:00  am; followed by Antiochian Village Campaign BBQ;  Church School lesson 12

Sunday, January 30:  Orthros 8:45 am,  Divine Liturgy 10:00  am; followed by Annual Meeting of the parish

February 4-6: Midwinter Meetings of FSJD, Antiochian Women, and Teen SOYO at Antiochian Village

Sunday, February 6:  Orthros 8:45 am,  Divine Liturgy 10:00  am; followed by Chinese New Year Missions Breakfast

Saturday, February 12:  Pre-Lenten Retreat sponsored by Antiochian Women, at St. George, Norwood



  1. God won't ask what kind of car you drove; He'll ask how many people you drove who didn't have transportation.  
  2. God won't ask the square footage of your house; He'll ask how many people you welcomed into your home.  
  3. God won't ask about the clothes you had in your closet; He'll ask how many you helped to clothe.  
  4. God won't ask what your highest salary was; He'll ask if you compromised your character to obtain it.  
  5. God won't ask what your job title was; He'll ask if you performed your job to the best of your ability.  
  6. God won't ask how many friends you had; He'll ask how many people to whom you were a friend.  
  7. God won't ask in what neighborhood you lived; He'll ask how you treated your neighbors.  
  8. God won't ask about the color of your skin; He'll ask about the content of your character.  
  9. God won't ask why it took you so long to seek Him; He'll lovingly take you to your mansion in heaven, and not to the gates of hell.  
  10. God won't ask whether you satisfactorily practiced asceticism, nor how many prostrations and bows you made before the Holy Table.; He will ask whether you fed the hungry, clothed the naked, visited the sick and the prisoner in jail.  That is all you will be asked.

               - #1-9 adapted from a forwarded e-mail; #10 adapted from St. Maria Skobtsova