September 10, 2017
14th Sunday after Pentecost – Tone 5
Sunday before the Elevation of the Cross
Afterfeast of the Nativity of the Theotokos
Martyrs Menodora, Metrodora, and Nymphodora, at Nicomedia (305-11)
Matins Gospel #3: St. Mark 16: 9-20
Divine Liturgy: Galatians 6: 11-18; St John 3:13-17 (Cross)
2 Corinthians 1: 21- 2:4; St. Matthew 22: 1-14 (Sunday)
CHURCH SCHOOL for children will be held
right after Liturgy.
Panikhida for Nancy Ruder, Janice Dietrich’s mother, will be served after Liturgy. She fell asleep in the Lord September 4.
Class for seekers and catechumens only will be held in the library after coffee hour.
6 p.m. – Great Vespers – Elevation of the Cross
7 p.m. – Class on Orthodoxy
6:30 a.m. – Divine Liturgy – Elevation of the Cross
FALL RETREAT – The Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ Monastery, Kemp, TX, invites us to a retreat on Saturday, September 30, 2017. Guest Speaker will be Father Sean A. Levine, speaking on Marriage, Asceticism, and the Journey to Holiness. For more information and reservations see https://nativitymonastery.com/
HURRICANE RELIEF – Let us be generous to help those suffering from these dreadful disasters. You can put a check marked “Hurricane” or cash in the special basket in the narthex. We will send this to International Orthodox Christian Charities. Or you can donate directly to them; see iocc.org/harvey.
SERVICE WEEKEND – Holy Nativity Church, Shreveport, is hosting a YES Weekend for our area and surrounding youth and college students in conjunction with Focus North America from October 27th- 29th. This event will help youth further their growth by providing them hands on ministry experience with less fortunate children in the Shreveport area, homeless people and others. For more information see flyer on the bulletin board.
TIM LEONARD’S SISTER, Fannie Buck Sanderson, fell asleep in the Lord September 6. May her memory be eternal. Read obituary.
PASTORAL CONFERENCE – Matthew and Ashley Prewitt will be in charge of preparations for the Diocese of the South Pastoral Conference, which we will host February 12-16, 2018. Speak to them to volunteer to help.
September 14 – Elevation of the Holy Cross
September 30 – Fall Retreat at Nativity Monastery
September 30 – Walk to Defeat ALS – register here
October 6-8 – Young Adults Conference, Atlanta
October 7 – Two year memorial for Matushka Sissy
October 16-18 – Fr. Paul at Deanery Meeting, Memphis
October 20 – 21 – HROC Men’s Retreat
October 27-29 – YES – FOCUS Youth Service Weekend, Shreveport
November 18 – Serve at Stewpot
February 12-16, 2018 – We host DOS Pastoral Conference
SOVEREIGNTY LAID UPON HIS SHOULDERS –
When our Lord was handed over to the will of his cruel foes, they ordered him, in mockery of his royal dignity, to carry the instrument of his own torture. This was done to fulfill the prophecy of Isaiah: “A child is born for as, a son is given to us; sovereignty is laid upon his shoulders.”
To the wicked, the sight of the Lord carrying his own cross was indeed an object of derision; but to the faithful a great mystery was revealed, for the cross was destined to become the scepter of his power.
Here was the majestic spectacle of a glorious conqueror mightily overthrowing the hostile forces of the devil and nobly bearing the trophy of his victory.
On the shoulders of his invincible patience he carried the sign of salvation for all the kingdoms of the earth to worship, as if on that day he would strengthen all his f future disciples by the symbol of his work, and say to them: “Anyone who does not take up his cross and follow me is not worthy of me.”
It was not in the temple, whose cult was now at an end, that Christ, as the new and authentic sacrifice of reconciliation, offered himself to the Father; nor was it within the walls of the city doomed to destruction for its crimes.
It was beyond the city gates, outside the camp, that he was crucified, in order that when the ancient sacrificial dispensation came to an end a new victim might be laid on a new altar, and the cross of Christ become the altar not of the temple, but of the world.
O the marvelous power of the cross, the glory of the passion! No tongue can fully describe it. Here we see the judgment seat of the Lord, here sentence is passed upon the world, and here the sovereignty of the Crucified is revealed.
You drew all things to yourself, Lord, when you stretched out your hands all the day long g to a people that denied and opposed you, until at last the whole world was brought to proclaim your majesty.
You drew all things to yourself, Lord, when all the elements combined to pronounce judgment in execration of that crime; when the lights of heaven were darkened and the day was turned into night; when the land was shaken by unwonted earthquakes, and all creation refused to serve those wicked people.
Yes, Lord, you drew all things to yourself. The veil of the temple was torn in two and the Holy of Holies taken away from those unworthy high priests. Figures gave way to reality, prophecy to manifestation, law to gospel.
You drew all things to yourself in order that the worship of the whole human race could be celebrated everywhere in a sacramental form which would openly fulfil what had been enacted by means of veiled symbols in that single Jewish temple.
Now that the multiplicity of animal sacrifices has ceased, the single offering of your body and blood takes the place of that diversity of victims, since you are the true Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world, and in yourself you fulfill all the rites of the old law, so that as there is now a single sacrifice in place of all those victims, so there is a single kingdom formed of all the peoples of the earth.
– St Leo the Great, Sermon 8 on the Passion of the Lord, 4-6: PL 54, 339-41
_WORTH READING: David Carlin, From Civil Religion to Hate