Update for the week Friday, October 12, through Thursday, October 18, 2012


ESSAY AND RESUME EDITING –  All teens applying to college (or jobs) are welcome to bring their application essays and resumes on Sunday, October 14, to be edited and looked at during/after coffee hour by "experts!" We can sit down and brainstorm or work on an existing piece. Please email Nadia if you think you'll be attending: nabuelezam@gmail.com. "Experts" are also available at other times for 1-1 sessions.

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 2, 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.com  by Sunday, October 14, or order your own tickets online at http://www.handelandhaydn.org.  

MIRACULOUS ICON VISIT - With the blessing of His Grace Bishop +JOHN, on Monday evening October 15 the miraculous Icon of the Mother of God of Hawaii will visit St. George Church in West Roxbury, MA. The Paraklesis service of intercession will be served at 7:00 pm followed by the anointing of the faithful.  In June 2008, this icon was officially recognized by bishops of the Orthodox Church as miraculous and genuine. The icon and its bearer have been given the blessing to travel to various churches and monasteries of Orthodox Church. This holy icon of the Mother of God continues to stream its fragrant myrrh to this day.  This will be its only visit to Boston.  Please plan to be with us for this very special blessing.  The sick, elderly and shut-ins are especially encouraged to be with us.  Visit the “News and Events” section at http://stgeorgeofboston.org for more information.


CONFESSIONS –  Confessions are heard each Saturday evening before and after Vespers (which start at 5:00 pm) or by appointment.
COFFEE HOUR SIGNUP – A new signup sheet has been posted on the bulletin board outside the coat closet. Sign up now to reserve the date you want in 2013.

CHARITY BAKE SALE –The Women’s Club will hold its annual Thanksgiving Charity Bake Sale on Sunday, November 18, 2012 (the Sunday before Thanksgiving).  Plan on purchasing all your holiday breads, pies, goodies, Syrian pastries and much more!  All proceeds will benefit the Convent of Saidnaya in Syria.  Call Priscilla Goss 781-762-1517, if you can help bake or donate something to sell.

SPECIAL OLYMPICS – Next Sunday, October 21, our teens will solicit your financial donations to enable them to sponsor the 32nd Annual Special Olympics Sports Camp at the Antiochian Village in the summer of 2013.  Please be generous, as the teens need to raise in excess of $50,000 to run this worthwhile program.

TEEN SOYO SPAGHETTI DINNER - The annual Spaghetti Dinner sponsored by Teen SOYO will take place on Sunday, November 11, following Liturgy. Come enjoy a meal of Spaghetti, Meatballs (just before the Fast!), Salad and Bread, Dessert and Coffee/Beverage.  Your Goodwill donation will be much appreciated.

AL-KAFAAT GALA DINNER – Please come to a gala dinner to help Al-Kafaat, a private, nonprofit and nondenominational organization that delivers education and rehabilitation services across seven different campuses in Lebanon. Under the Patronage of Metropolitan Philip and the Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese in North America, Al-Kafaat is raising funds across North America to build a new compound. The dinner, on Saturday, November 17 at 6:00 pm, is sponsored by St. George of Boston, 55 Emmonsdale Rd, West Roxbury. Tickets are $125.  You can read an article about Al-Kafaat at http://www.antiochian.org/node/25836.


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, and taking the collection. 

PRISON MINISTRY TRAINING – If you are interested joining the Prison Ministry, there will be an upcoming training for volunteers on Friday, October 19 at 4:00 pm at the Rectory of Immaculate Conception Parish , 11 Prospect Street,  Marlborough, MA 01752.  Dinner will be served by the Knights of Columbus. Training is required if you would like to come into prison to volunteer.  Please see Deacon Jeff or Father Anthony if you have questions or would like to join this ministry.

HELP MAKE SFEEHA AND KIBBEH – Please come to the church on Saturday morning, October 20, starting at 9:30 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.  Also, if you can, come at 9:00 Friday morning, October 26, to help the Women’s Club cook Kihbbeh.
   Pick-up dates are Sunday, October 21 for Sfeeha, and Sunday, October 28 for  Kibbeh.

 “BREAKFAST SEARCH” –  All teens and young adults are encouraged to participate in our first ever St. Mary's breakfast search, on Sunday, October 21. Our very own Theo Smith will lead us in a brief orientation during coffee hour before we head out to feed and talk to people on the streets! Please put this into your calendar! If you have questions, please contact Nadia: nabuelezam@gmail.com.

TALK ON ANTIOCH –  On Thursday evening, October 25, The Diocesan Chapter of the Fellowship of St. John the Divine will host a lecture entritled Antioch: Yesterday and Today.  The speaker is Fr. Elia Khalife, a monk at the Monastery of St. George Dayr al-Harf, Lebanon, and Director of the Center for Antiochian Studies & Research at Oxford University in England. The talk will be held at St. George of Boston at 7:30 pm.

FALL DELEGATES MEETING – The Fall Diocesan Delegates Meetings of  Teen SOYO, Fellowship of St. John the Divine and Antiochian Women will be held on Saturday, October 27, at St. Mary Church, 249 High St., Pawtucket, RI.

TEEN SOYO OFFICERS – Newly elected officers of Teen SOYO at St. Mary are Theo Smith, President; Tatiana Dalton, Vice President;  Sabrina Nebiye, Secretary; and Julia Shoop, Treasurer. Congratulations to them all!

CANNED FOOD DRIVE The annual FOOD FOR HUNGRY PEOPLE Canned Food Drive will be held October through December, 2012. 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. 42 pounds of food will feed a family of four for 3 days - since 1984 we have collected over 3,281,200 pounds of food!

BOOKS FOR SALE – The Fellowship of St. John the Divine has  several copies of the book "A Life Together: Wisdom of Community from the Christian East," by last year's von Holzhausen lecturer, Bishop Seraphim Sigrist. List price is $15.99, but you can purchase it for our cost of $9.00 per copy. This is your last chance to buy it at cost before we return our unsold books to the publisher. Please talk to or email Michael Decerbo, Fellowship treasurer at mdecerbo@alum.mit.edu, if you are interested in buying the book. If you are out of town, send your check to the church with an additional $4 for postage -- and please also email Mike so he can expect it and set your copy aside.

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

ATTENTION PARENTS OF ST. MARY PARISH COLLEGE STUDENTS – If you would like your sons or daughters to receive a copy of the CORNERSTONE each month while they are away at school to keep them in touch with what’s going on at St. Mary’s, please fill out one of the pink College Student Address Forms and return it to Marilyn Robbat.


DONATE VIA eGIVE– Did you know that you can make your donations to St. Mary through eGive, and have no more envelopes or checks to worry about?   If you have not yet set up an account, you can do it at www.egive-usa.com, or contact Charlie Marge (marge@alum.mit.edu) for help. The Recipient Organization is “St. Mary’s Orthodox Church.”

STREAMING VIDEO – St. Mary’s Church services are broadcast live each week through an internet video stream.  If you can't attend a service in person or want to share this ministry with a friend or loved one, the live stream can be viewed at www.stmaryorthodoxchurch.org/live  during regularly scheduled service times (see the schedule of services below or online).  If you have questions or comments about this ministry please contact us at live@stmaryorthodoxchurch.org.

VIDEO STREAMING FOR EVENTS – Now you can video stream your wedding or baptism live from St. Mary’s to friends and family who can't attend your event in person.  The cost for Event Video Streaming is $150 for members, $300 for non-members, and includes a password- protected viewing page and setup and breakdown of the streaming service for your event by a trained staff member.   You can also get a copy of your streamed event on CD: $50 for members, $100 for non-members. Fees are payable to the church. Streaming is subject to staff availability. For general questions on the video streaming ministry or event streaming, please contact live@stmaryorthodoxchurch.org.  To schedule your event and/or request Event Video Streaming, please contact the Church Office.

PROTECT YOUR VALUABLES – Please do not leave valuables unattended in the Church Hall or Coat 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.


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:

BE A GREETER – The Parish Council is continuing the Greeter Program, similar to other churches, to greet and aid parishioners, guests and visitors into the Church each Sunday.  As a Greeter, you will welcome people into the Church and help to direct visitors upstairs to the Liturgy, as well as keeping an eye on the Vestibule, hallways and entrance ways during church, arriving at Church at 9:45 am.  Greeting time ends when Communion starts.  We need volunteers.  If you would like to be a Greeter, a Sign-Up Sheet is posted on the Church Bulletin Board.  If you have any questions, please contact Buddy by e-mail buddy@cjmabardy.comor call him at 781-729-6303. “I was a stranger, and you invited me in………”   (Matthew 25:35)

LITURGICAL SERVICE – Each Sunday, members of the congregation are needed to read the Epistle and assist during Communion by 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 new 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.

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

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


GREETER:  Dino Takles

LITURGICAL SERVICE:  St. Mary young people

COFFEE HOUR:   Donald & Renay DiFiore


Saturday, October 13:  Great Vespers 5:00 pm

Sunday, October 14:  Orthros 8:45 am; Enquirers’ Class 9:00 am;  Divine Liturgy 10:00 am; Church School lesson 3

SCRIPTURE READINGS for Sunday, October 14:
   Epistle: St. Paul's Letter to Titus 3:8-15
… those who have believed in God [should] be careful to apply themselves to good deeds; these are excellent and profitable to men. But avoid stupid controversies … And let our people learn to apply themselves to good deeds, so as to help cases of urgent need, and not to be unfruitful.

   Gospel: Luke 8:5-15
The Lord said this parable: "A sower went out to sow his seed … The seed is the word of God. The ones along the path are those who have heard; then the devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts, that they may not believe and be saved. And the ones on the rock are those who, when they hear the word, receive it with joy; but these have no root, they believe for a while and in time of temptation fall away. And as for what fell among the thorns, they are those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by the cares and riches and pleasures of life, and their fruit does not mature. And as for that in the good soil, they are those who, hearing the word, hold it fast in an honest and good heart, and bring forth fruit with patience."


Saturday, October 20: Great Vespers 5:00 pm

Sunday, October 21:  Orthros 8:45 am; Enquirers’ Class 9:00 am;  Divine Liturgy 10:00 am; Church School lesson 4

Saturday, October 27: Great Vespers 5:00 pm

Sunday, October 28:  Orthros 8:45 am; Enquirers’ Class 9:00 am;  Divine Liturgy 10:00 am; Church School lesson 5

Sunday, November 4:  Daylight Savings Time ends

Thursday, November 15:  Nativity Fast begins


Allow the Spirit of God to dwell within you; then in His love He will come and make a habitation with you; He will reside in you and live in you. If your heart is pure you will see Him and He will sow in you the good seed of reflection upon His actions and wonder at His majesty. This will happen if you take the trouble to weed out from your soul the undergrowth of desires, along with the thorns and tares of bad habits.
   - Evagrius of Pontus

As then it is His [God's] part to plant and to water, so it is yours to bear fruit: it is God's to grant grace, but yours to receive and guard it. Despise not the grace because it is freely given, but receive and treasure it devoutly.
   - St. Cyril of Jerusalem, Catechetical Lectures

Whoever bears fruit with works of faith and love, he is a real disciple of Christ.
   - Saint John Chrysostom

Humility comes from the Latin word humus, fertile ground. The fertile ground is there, unnoticed, taken for granted, always there to be trodden upon. It is silent, inconspicuous, dark and yet it is always ready to receive any seed, ready to give it substance and life. The more lowly, the more fruitful, because it becomes really fertile when it accepts all the refuse of the earth. It is so low that nothing can soil it, abase it, humiliate it; it has accepted the last place and cannot go any lower. In that position, nothing can shatter the soul’s serenity, its peace and joy.
   - Metropolitan Anthony Bloom,  Living Prayer

I have sown my fruits in the hearts [of mortals]
And I have changed them into myself …
They are my members, and I am their head.
Glory to thee, Lord Christ, our Head! Alleluia!
   - Odes of Solomon (2nd century, author unknown)