Sunday After the Theophany of Our Lord, God, and Savior, Jesus Christ

January 13, 2019

Baptism Matthew 4:12-17 - Now when [Jesus] heard that John had been arrested, he withdrew into Galilee; and leaving Nazareth he went and dwelt in Caper'na-um by the sea, in the territory of Zeb'ulun and Naph'tali, that what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah might be fulfilled: "The land of Zeb'ulun and the land of Naph'tali, toward the sea, across the Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles -- the people who sat in darkness have seen a great light, and for those who sat in the region and shadow of death light has dawned." From that time Jesus began to preach, saying, "Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand." (RSV)

Receive Him – John’s preaching of repentance was not precisely the same as the preaching of Jesus, yet the Savior preaches in ways commensurable with John, for there is one God who sent them both. John first says “repent” in order to make ready a “people prepared” for God. Jesus, when he has received a people who have been made ready and who have already repented, does not merely say to them “Repent.” For he does not preach in competition with the law and the prophets. When John had fulfilled the old covenant, Jesus “began to preach” the new, being himself the beginning of it. For this reason the words “he began” are not written of John, for he was an end. Moreover, the one preaches in the wilderness, the other in the midst of the people. (Origen)

Scripture

  • Matins: Matthew 28:16-20 (Gospel 1)
  • Divine Liturgy: Ephesians 4:7-13, Matthew 4:12-17

The icon is a detail of the Baptism of Christ.

March for Life - Friday, January 18, 2019

Plan now to participate in the annual March for Life! Your witness is vitally important as Americans work to ensure the respect for life for everyone from the moment of conception until the moment of natural death. If you cannot particpate in the March for Life in Washington, DC, then particpate (even for an hour!) at the one in your town. And remember that even if you are elderly, disabled, or if circumstances make it not possible for you to participate in the March you can still participate by praying. Prayer is the most powerful weapon we have against the evils of abortion and euthanasia.

"The love of God does not distinguish between the newly-conceived infant still in the mother's womb, the baby, the youth, the grown adult or the elderly because in each of them He sees the sign of His own image and likeness." (Pope Benedict XVI)


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Teachings of Christ

“I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. (John 14:6 ESV)

Scripture

March 17, 2019
Second Sunday of Great Lent - St. Gregory Palamas
- Matins: John 21:1-14 (Gospel 10)
- Liturgy: Hebrews 1:10-2:3, Mark 2:1-12 (Sunday: ), Hebrews 7:26-8:2, John 10:9-19 (St. Gregory)

Third Week of Great Lent
- Monday: Isaiah 8:13-9:7, Genesis 6:9-22, Proverbs 8:1-21
- Tuesday: Isaiah 9:9-10:4, Genesis 7:1-5, Proverbs 8:32-9:11
- Wednesday: Isaiah 10:12-20, Genesis 7:6-9, Proverbs 9:12-18
- Thursday: Isaiah 11:10-12:2, Genesis 7:11-8:3, Proverbs 10:1-22
- Friday: Isaiah 13:2-13, Genesis 8:4-21, Proverbs 10:31-11:12
- Saturday: Hebrews 10:32-38, Mark 2:14-17 (and for All Souls: 1 Thessalonians 4:13-17, John 5:24-30)

March 24
Third Sunday of Great Lent: Veneration of the Holy Cross
- Matins: John 21:15-25 Gospel 11)
- Liturgy: Hebrews 4:14-5:6, Mark 8:34-9:1

March 25
Annunciation of Our Most Holy Lady, the Mother of God and Ever-Virgin Mary
- Vespers (Parables of the Feast): Genesis 28:10-17, Ezekiel 43:27-44:4, Proverbs 9:1-11
- Vespers: Exodus 3:1-8, Proverbs 8:22-30
- Matins: Luke 1:39-49, 56
- Liturgy: Hebrews 2:11-18, Luke 1:24-38

Fourth Week of Great Lent
- Monday: Isaiah 14:24-32, Genesis 8:21-9:7, Proverbs 11:19-12:6
- Tuesday: Isaiah 25:1-9, Genesis 9:8-17, Proverbs 12:8-22
- Wednesday: Isaiah 26:21-27:9, Genesis 9:18-10:1, Proverbs 12:23-13:9
- Thursday: Isaiah 28:14-22, Genesis 10:32-11:9, Proverbs 13:20-14:6
- Friday: Isaiah 29:13-23, Genesis 12:1-7, Proverbs 14:15-26
- Saturday: Hebrews 6:9-23, Mark 7:31-37 (and for All Souls: 1 Thessalonians 4:13-17, John 5:24-30)

March 31, 2019
Fourth Sunday of Great Lent: Saint John of the Ladder
- Matins: Matthew 28:16-20 (Gospel 1)
- Liturgy: Hebrews 6:13-20, Mark 9:17-31 (and for St. John: Ephesians 5:9-19, Matthew 4:25-5:12)

Feasts & Fasts

March
3 - Forgiveness Sunday (Cheese-Fare)
4 - Beginning of the Holy Forty Days Fast
10 - First Sunday of the Great Fast (Sunday of Orthodoxy)
16 - Second All-Souls Saturday
17 - Second Sunday of the Great Fast (St. Gregory Palamas)
23 - Third All Souls Saturday
24 - Third Sunday of the Great Fast (Veneration of the Cross)
25 - Annunciation to the Mother of God
20 - Fourth All-Souls Saturday
31 - Fourth Sunday of the Great Fast (St. John of the Ladder)

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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Lenten Prayer of St. Ephrem

O Lord and Master of my life, drive away from me the spirit of despondency, carelessness, love of power, and idle chatter. (Prostration)

Rather grant to me, Your servant, the spirit of wholeness of being, humility, patience, and love. (Prostration)

Yes, O Lord and King, grant that I may see my own faults and not condemn my brother; for You are blessed to the ages of ages. Amen. (Prostration)

Random Proverb

"One gives freely, yet grows all the richer; another withholds what he should give, and only suffers want." (Proverbs 11:24 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

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

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

Demons often transform themselves into angels of light and take the form of martyrs, and make it appear to us during sleep that we are in communication with them. Then, when we wake up, they plunge us into unholy joy and conceit. But you can detect their deceit by this very fact. For angles reveal torments, judgments and separations; and when we wake up we find that we are trembling and sad. As soon as we begin to believe the demons in dreams, then they make sport of us when we are awake too. He who believes in dreams is completely inexperienced. 'But he who distrusts all dreams is a wise man. Only believe dreams that warn you of torments and judgments. But if despair afflicts you, then such dreams are also from demons.

St. John Climacus, The Ladder of Divine Ascent