Parish announcements this week

Christ is among us

1. VIGIL LIGHT: This week vigil light is offered to God’s glory by Luba Romaniw for a Special Intention.

2. AFTER DIVINE LITURGY: Dear parishioners and guests, after each Divine Liturgy, coffee and hard rolls are available in the church hall.

3. 2017 CHRISTMAS BAZAAR :  The Ukrainian Heritage Center’s Christmas Bazaar will be held on Saturday,  December 9,  Sunday, December 10, Saturday, December 16 and Sunday, December 17 in the church hall from 9:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m. This offers you an excellent opportunity to purchase, at very reasonable prices, the Ukrainian gifts and cards (for Christmas and other special occasions) that you would like to give to family members, friends, co-workers or teachers of your children. We are also seeking volunteer sales associates that can help process the purchases that people make. If you can help during one of the times indicated earlier in this note, please call Carl R. Harvey at (203) 389-6076. Your assistance will be greatly appreciated. You will be giving much needed support to sustain the operation of your Heritage Center.

4. 2017 CHRISTMAS BAZAAR: The Ukrainian Women’s League of New Haven, Branch 108 will be holding their annual Christmas Bazaar on Sunday, December 10, Saturday, December 16 and Sunday, December 17, after each Divine Liturgy, 10 a.m. till 1:00 p.m. Baked goods and kutia will also be available. Donations of Ukrainian or holiday items would be greatly welcome. For more information, contact Anna Salemme 203- 934-6520 or Larissa Swartwout 203-248-9767.

5. ST. GIANNA CENTER OF NEW HAVEN: The parish is collecting diapers, seats, strollers and gift cards to be given to the St. Gianna Center of New Haven (www.gianna center.org). Useful diapers sizes: 3, 4, 5. Gift cards are needed from Walmart or Target. Please place the gift card in an envelope marked “St. Gianna Center” and give it to directly Fr. Iura. Also, NEW car seats / strollers are needed (sorry, old car seats / strollers can’t be accepted due to legislation). Items can be placed in the labeled box at the entrance of the Church. The St. Gianna Center is a ministry of Catholics in New Haven helping at-risk pregnant women and their children. Thank you for your generosity!

6. Divine Liturgy Schedule for the holy days:

~Christmas, December 25: 9:45 a.m. Great Compline (The God is with Us service) and Divine Liturgy 10:30 a.m.

~New Year’s Day, January 1: Divine Liturgy 11:00 a.m.

~Theophany of Our Lord, January 6: Great Compline at 9:15 a.m. followed by the Divine Liturgy and Great Sanctification of water 10:00 a.m.

~Christmas (Julian Calendar), January 7: Great Compline at 9:45 a.m. and Divine Liturgy at 10:30 a.m.

7. Kovbasa and Kapusta Dinners Available: We have for sale kovbasa and kapusta (cabbage). The price for the kovbasa meals are $12.00 each. The price for kapusta only is $7.00 for 2 pounds. Cash or check payable to the “KofC Council 16253”.

8. Update on Humanitarian Efforts in Ukraine: U.S. Senator Blumenthal will be visiting the parish on December 10th at 11:30 a.m. The meeting will take place in the church hall. The main focus of his visit is to let our community know where things stand with the Ukrainian Security Assistance Initiative and our Wounded Ukrainian Soldier Project.

9. END OF YEAR REPORTS: All donations and contributions must be received by Monday, December 25th to be recorded on the annual statement for the Year 2017.

10. ANNUAL STAMFORD CHARITIES APPEAL: Please don’t forget to donate for the Charities Appeal. Please make your check payable to the Diocese of Stamford but do not send the check to Stamford, give it to Fr. Iura. We need to get proper credit for our parish’s pledge. We sincerely ask all parishioners to make a generous contribution.

11. BOOK SIGNING:  “My Ukrainian American Story” on Sunday at the Ukrainian Women’s League bazaar. Meet the author/illustrator who attended our own Ridna Shkola. Adrianna Bamber will be signing and selling her books after each Divine Liturgy in our hall on Sunday, December 10th.

12. BULLETIN UPDATES: Dear parishioners. As you may have noticed their have been some changes and improvements to your parish bulletin over the past six months. In a continuing effort to make the bulletin more parishioner friendly, I call upon you to let me know what else you would like to see and or change. And as always I appreciate the various information materials that you are providing. I look forward to your responses. Father Iura.

13. CELL PHONES: Please, please, please. Turn of your cell phones when you come to the Divine Liturgy. If you are expecting an emergency call, please put it on vibrate and go outside to answer. Also, please stop using your cell phone during the Divine Liturgy. This is for the benefit of all. Thank you.

14. VETERANS POST 33: The next meeting of the Ukrainian –American Veteran Bishop John Stock Post 33 of New Haven will be held on Sunday, December 17, 2017. We will begin the meeting immediately following the second Divine Liturgy. The meeting will be held in Classroom 2. For more information, contact the Post Commander Carl Harvey at 203-389-6076 or crharv384@optimum.net.

15. PYROHY We will be making Pyrohy on Saturday December 16, 2017 in the Church Hall. and we are always looking for new talent to help with this twenty-five+ year Parish project. Please feel to come and join the fun. Luncheon is provided on Saturday. Call the Project Director Walter Ushchak @ (203) 789-9554 for details. Also please be sure to place your order as soon as possible.

16. ADULT RELIGIOUS EDUCATION: The Knights of Columbus are spearheading an effort to provide Adult Religious Education – Refresher courses to the members of the Parish. The basic plan outline is to provide an English class after the English mass on Sunday and a Ukrainian class after the Ukrainian mass. The class will be offered once or twice a month. A curriculum is being formulated as we speak. We now turn to you the parishioners to tell us what topics you would like to see covered. We also invite you if you feel you have a topic that you would like to lecture on to bring it to my attention. I look forward to all of your suggestions, Father Iura.

17. CHURCH AND BUILDING REPAIRS: As you may have noticed there is an ongoing program of repairs being conducted on the property. The entire interior of the church is having its walls repaired, replastered and then completely repainted with a semi-gloss white paint. The work is in its ninth week of progress and has had numerous difficult challenges to overcome. In addition the handicap door to the church has been repaired. The church front door lock and latches have been updated and repaired. The steeple door locks have been rekeyed and repaired. The three outbuildings, Heritage Center, rectory and rental property has had repairs completed to the damaged soffits, gables aluminum siding and gutters. We brought in aerial lifts to complete the work and completely replaced the gutters on the Heritage Center. The Heritage Center also has had some of their aging windows replaced with new energy efficient windows. The property has had all its fire extinguishers upgraded, tested and repaired as needed with additional extinguishers installed to cover all possible issues. An inspection was conducted by the Municipal Fire Marshal. The doors to the church hall have been repaired so that they open and close easier. In the church hall the lower level meeting room has been completely upgraded, repaired and painted with new ceiling tiles installed as part of a mold abatement program. The lower level bathrooms and hallways are in the process of being repainted. And of course you have all noted that the front entrance to the church hall has a brand new burgundy carpet. A special thanks to the KofC member volunteers who provided countless hours of donation labor in helping to complete some of these projects. All these items are in addition to the massive outside repair/protection work that has been conducted this year. The roofs and the blue panel repairs on the church hall. These efforts have been expensive and we are currently facing a severe financial shortfall by end of year. It is unfortunate, but necessary, to maintain the physical plant of the property. These were items that could not be put off anymore. The delaying of these repairs would only have caused more damage and been more costly in the future. Please take note that there is additional expensive and extensive work scheduled for next year.

18. The Philip’s Fast (Pylypivka): We are making the 40-day fast that began on November 15, the day after the feast St. Philip to spiritually prepare Nativity of the Lord. We keep the Philip’s Fast because we believe that doing so it can help us to better understand and appreciate all of God’s saving plan for each of us.

The Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church teaches her faithful that “Penitential fasting practices, repentance and abstinence that aim to satisfy the sins committed and to achieve the highest level of perfection is the oldest tradition in the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church” (CCEO: 882, §1).

To observe the Fast, we do not eat meat or foods containing meat on Wednesdays and Fridays.

Definitions: Abstinence means that we do not eat a certain type of food, for example meat and oil, or any other foods that have that as an ingredient. Fasting means that we eat less food. Those exempt from fasting and abstinence: children under the age of 14; adults over the age of 60; those who are gravely ill, pregnant women, post-partum mothers, breast-feeding mothers, travelers (if travel time exceeds 8 hours), those engaged in heavy labor, those who eat from the table of others, the poor who live from charity.

Further reading: The Winter Pascha (St. Vladimir’s Seminary Press) by Thomas Hopko.

19. Awareness for Persecuted Christians: Since 2003, millions of Christians have been forced to flee their homes as a result of war and direct persecution from ISIS. In the 14 years since the start of the war and genocide, the number of Christians in Iraq has dropped by 90 percent — leaving somewhere between 175,000 and 300,000. On November 28, Archbishop Bashar Matti Warda of Erbil, Iraq, asked Christians in the USA to pray for persecuted Christians in the Middle East. He encouraged his American audience to financially support the Knights of Columbus and other organizations that assist Iraqi Christians and to spread awareness about the difficult situation in the Middle East. To make a donation: https://www.kofc.org/un/en/secure/charities/hope.html, or send a donation to the K of C —Persecuted Christians Fund, One Columbus Plaza, New Haven, CT 06510.

Let us pray: O God of all the Nations, the One God who is and was and always will be, who in your providence willed that your Church be united to the suffering of your Son, look with mercy on your servants in Iraq who are persecuted for their faith in you. Grant them perseverance and courage to be worthy imitators of Christ. Bring your wisdom upon leaders of nations to work for peace among all peoples. May your Spirit open conversion for those who contradict your will that we live in harmony. And in all things may we be united in truth and freedom to seek your will in our lives. We ask this through Christ our Lord. AMEN. Our Lady, Queen of Peace, pray for us.

20. SUMA FEDERAL CREDIT UNION: 555 George St., New Haven, CT. Business hours: Tuesday, 3:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., Saturday, 9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Phone 203-785-8805; fax: 203-785-8677.