Third Sunday after Pentecost

June 10, 2018

Prophet Elisha Matthew 6:26-30 - "Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add one cubit to his span of life? And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they neither toil nor spin; yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O men of little faith?" (RSV)

Trust in the Lord - Jesus teaches us to trust in God our Father at all times and in all circumstances. St John Chrysostom, in his commentary on Matthew, speaks to us about the meaning of the images used in this passage. Just when the lilies of the field are all decked out Jesus no longer calls them lilies but “grass of the field.” He then points further to their vulnerable condition by saying “which are here today.” Then He does not merely say “and not tomorrow” but rather more callously “cast into the oven”. These creatures are not merely “clothed” but “so clothed” in this way as to be later brought to nothing. Do you see how Jesus everywhere abounds in amplifications and intensifications? He does so in order to press home his point. Then He adds, “Will he not much more clothe you?” The force of the emphasis is on “you” to indicate covertly how great is the value set upon your personal existence and the concern God shows for you in particular. It is as though He were saying, “You, to whom He gave a soul, for whom He fashioned a body, for whose sake He made everything in creation, for whose sake He sent prophets, and gave the law, and wrought those innumerable good works, and for whose sake he gave up his only begotten Son.” This is a powerful message.

The icon is of the Holy Prophet Elisha (June 14th).


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Teachings of Christ

“Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you." (Matthew 7:7,8 ESV)

Scripture

January 20, 2019
Thirty-Fifth Sunday After Pentecost
- Matins: Mark 16:1-8 (Matins Gospel 2)
- Liturgy: Colossians 3:12-16, Luke 18:18-27 (Slavs), Luke 14:16-24 (Greeks)

Thirty-Sixth Week After Pentecost
- Monday: Hebrews 11:17, 27-31, Mark 9:42-10:1
- Tuesday: Hebrews 12:25-26, 13:22-25, Mark 10:2-12
- Wednesday: James 1:1-18, Mark 10:11-16
- Thursday: James 1:19-27, Mark 10:17-27
- Friday: James 2:1-13, Mark 10:23-32
- Saturday: Colossians 1:3-6, Luke 16:10-15

January 27, 2018
Thirty-Sixth Sunday After Pentecost
- Matins: Mark 16:9-20 (Gospel 3)
- Liturgy: 1 Timothy 1:15-17, Luke 18:35-43

Feasts & Fasts

January
1 - Circumcision of Our Lord, God and Savior, Jesus Christ | Feast of St. Basil the Great | New Year's Day (Civil)
6 - Theophany of Our Lord, God, and Savior, Jesus Christ
13 - Sunday After Theophany
21 - Martin Luther King Day (USA)
30 - Synaxis of the Ecumenical Teachers and Hierarchs: Basil the Great, Gregory the Theologian, and John Chrysostom

Please pray!

"They were stoned, they were sawn in two, they were killed with the sword...." (Hebrews 11:37a)

Please lift up in prayer all those who are persecuted and deprived of liberty, everywhere in the world. Please especially remember the peoples of Iraq, Syria, Egypt, Niger - the whole Middle East and Africa - who are literal martyrs for Christ. Also the peoples of Ukraine. They are our brothers, for all are one in Christ.

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Theophany

When You were baptized in the Jordan, O Lord, * worship of the Trinity was revealed, * for the Father's voice bore witness to You, calling You His “beloved Son”, * and the Spirit in the form of a dove confirmed the certainty of these words. * O Christ God, * Who appeared and enlightened the world, glory to You! (Troparion, Tone 1)

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever and to the ages of ages. Amen.

You have appeared to the whole world today, * and Your light, O Lord, is signed upon us, * who with knowledge praise You in song: * "You have come, and You have appeared, O Unapproachable Light." (Kontakion, Tone 4)

Theophany is a Greek word meaning "manifestation or appearence of God".

Random Proverb

"The wage of the righteous leads to life, the gain of the wicked to sin." (Proverbs 10:10 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

Even a pious person is not immune to spiritual sickness if he does not have a wise guide -- either a living person or a spiritual writer. This sickness is called _prelest_, or spiritual delusion, imagining oneself to be near to God and to the realm of the divine and supernatural. Even zealous ascetics in monasteries are sometimes subject to this delusion, but of course, laymen who are zealous in external struggles (podvigi) undergo it much more frequently. Surpassing their acquaintances in struggles of prayer and fasting, they imagine that they are seers of divine visions, or at least of dreams inspired by grace. In every event of their lives, they see special intentional directions from God or their guardian angel. And then they start imagining that they are God's elect, and often try to foretell the future. The Holy Fathers armed themselves against nothing so fiercely as against this sickness -- prelest.

Metropolitan Anthony Khrapovitsky