Sunday of the Publican and Pharisee

Pharisee and PublicanThis Sunday’s Gospel begins our preparation for the Great Fast. It seems to turn the whole purpose of the Fast on its head. The Pharisee boasts of “fasting twice a week,” and “giving tithes of all I possess,” and thanks God that he is not like other men. But Jesus says he is not justified. Our Lord does not speak of how these two men lived their lives outside the temple. He does not speak explicitly of whether the tax collector repented, though Zaccheus did repent to receive the Lord’s mercy and forgiveness. But our Lord focuses on one reality only: what do we believe in our heart. I had a friend who said that if he didn’t fast during Lent, he would not feel himself worthy of Communion on Pascha. But to win salvation for ourselves is not the purpose of the Fast – we fast only to come to an understanding that we cannot save ourselves by our own merits.

The tax collector understood this and was saved. The Pharisee was proud and missed God’s grace. Certainly our Lord does not consider fasting and tithing “bad behavior,” but to take pride in them is ignorance. In every Communion and in the whole great fast, we must pray in the depths of our hearts and minds as the Liturgy does: “O God, be merciful to me a sinner! O God, cleanse me of my sins and have mercy on me! O God, forgive me for I have sinned without number!”

Meditation by Archpriest David Petras

Parish announcements this week

  1. The Knights of Columbus Blessed Andrey Sheptytsky will hold its next regular meeting on Monday, February 6, 2017 at 7:00 p.m. in the church hall. All men of parish are invited to attend to see what the Knights are all about and what can do for our parish.
  2. St. Michael’s parish invites you to a Valentine’s Day lunch-dance on February 12, 2017 at 12:30 p.m. On that day we will celebrate only one Divine Liturgy at 10:30. Live music and full dinner will be served. We ask you to donate cakes for desert. Tickets are $30.00 for adults, $20.00 for students and free for children under 12 years old.
  3. The next meeting of the Ukrainian American Veterans Bishop John Stock Post 33 of New Haven will be held on Sunday, February 19, 2017. We will begin the meeting at 9:45 and end by 10:30 between the first and second Divine Liturgy’s. The meeting will be held in Classroom 2 and it will last no more than 40 minutes.
  4. SOROKOUSTY: will be offered during Lent on All Souls’ Saturdays, February 18, March 11, 18, April 1, and then in Eastertime on June 3.Please take a book found in the entrance of the church, fill it out. Place it in envelope, and drop it in the collection basket. Let us remember all our loved ones who have gone to their heavenly reward. Eternal Memory!   Note Well: The word Ukrainian word “Sorokousty” means “forty mouths” (sorok = forty; ust = mouth). Originally, this was a prayer service offered by forty mouths or by forty priests. Historically, families would honor their deceased by holding services for them in the cathedrals on the 3rd, 9th and 40th day after their death —with 40 priests celebrating the services. Today, Sorokousty is the service that honors the deceased and is offered during Lent.
  5. All new announcements for upcoming events should be submitted to rectory office before Tuesday of the week prior to when the event is to be posted in the bulletin.
  6. We have for sale stuffed cabbage with meat ($18 per dozen) cabbage with sausage ($6.00 per container).

 

 

Divine Liturgy this week

GLORY TO JESUS CHRIST * SLAVA ISUSU XRYSTU!

Sun., February 5, 2017     Sunday of the Publican and Pharisee
9:00 a.m. Special Intention
10:30 a.m. PRO POPULO

Epistle: 2 Timothy 3:10-15
Gospel: Luke 18:10-14, Tone 5

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Mon., February 6, 2017     The Venerable Bishop Bucolus
8:00 a.m. no intention for the Liturgy

Tue., February 7, 2017     Our Venerable Bishop Parthenius
8:00 a.m. no intention for the Liturgy

Wed., February 8, 2017     Holy Great-Martyr Theodore
8:00 a.m. no intention for the Liturgy

Thurs., February 9, 2017     Holy Martyr Nicephorus
8:00 a.m. no intention for the Liturgy

Fri., February 10, 2017     Holy Martyr Charalampus
8:00 a.m. no intention for the Liturgy

Sat., February 11, 2017     Holy Martyr Bishop Blaise
8:00 a.m. no intention for the Liturgy

***

Sun., February 12, 2017     Sunday of the Prodigal Son
There is no 9:00 a.m. Divine Liturgy
10:30 a.m.    PRO POPULO

Epistle: 1 Corinthians 6:12-20
Gospel: Luke 15:11-32, Tone 6

Zacchaeus Sunday

ZacchaeusMeditation on Sunday’s Scripture readings 1 Timothy 4:9-16; Luke 19:1-10

Though there is no special office for this Sunday, it is commonly seen as the beginning of our preparation for the Feast of our Lord’s Resurrection. Today we must be Zacchaeus. When Jesus came to Jericho, “Now a man there named Zacchaeus, who was a chief tax collector and also a wealthy man, was seeking to see who Jesus was; but he could not see him because of the crowd, for he was short in stature. So he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore tree in order to see Jesus, who was about to pass that way.” Today is where we start our search for God, who is coming to take away the sin of the world. Today we must be filled with the desire to see God, as was Zacchaeus. Today we must acknowledge our sins, for Jesus is coming to St. Stephens in Phoenix, today he is coming into our homes, more exactly, into the home of our heart. What a contrast between Zacchaeus and the Blind Man of last week’s gospel, who could not see and begged Jesus for sight. Zacchaeus could see and yet climbs the sycamore tree to get the best possible view.

What a contrast between Zacchaeus and the rich young man of two Sundays ago. The rich young man could not let even one penny of his riches escape his grasp, but Zacchaeus says, “Half of my possessions, Lord, I shall give to the poor, and if I have extorted anything from anyone I shall repay it four times over.” Today, Jesus tells us, “Salvation has come to this home.” It is already Pascha, if we turn to our Lord in his mercy, if we seek him with the zeal of Zacchaeus. Today St. Paul’s promise is fulfilled, “We have set our hope on the living God, who is the savior of all, especially of those who believe. (1 Timothy 4:10)” Today we must be among those who believe.

Meditation by Archpriest David Petras

Professor Wilken to speak in New Haven

Robert Louis WilkenRobert Louis Wilken, former professor of the History of Christianity at the University of Virginia, will deliver a lecture on Monday, January 30th at 7:00 pm at St. Mary’s Church (5 Hillhouse Avenue, New Haven) entitled, “Liberty in the Things of God: Christian Origins of Religious Freedom.”

36th Sunday after Pentecost

Healing of the blind man1 Timothy 1:15-17; Luke 18:35-43 (Readings of the 31st Sunday after Pentecost)

We must learn how to read Scripture. It is not lessons of the past, but the reality of God’s presence among us today, in the here and now. One of the most frequent ways that Jesus steps into our lives is by his works of healing. In Matthew 11:5 Jesus tells us, “the blind regain their sight, the lame walk, lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the poor have the good news proclaimed to them.” Today we hear this good news, today the blind see. Jesus often gave sight to the blind, telling them, “Your faith has saved you.” This is what he says to the blind man of Jericho. He cannot see who Jesus is, but when those around him say, “Jesus is passing by,” he immediately shouts as loud as he can, “Jesus, Son of David, have pity on me.” For Jesus, though he is the Word of God, has become one of us, of the family of David. We might think that the gospel is about physical sight, but it is more than that, it is why faith is necessary.

All of us, whether physically blind or spiritually blind, need Jesus who said, “I am the light of the world.” This is why we call baptism “enlightenment.” This is why we must confess that Jesus came to save sinners, “of whom we are the first.” We can say this sincerely, because we know the power of sin in our own hearts, and not in the hearts of others. We will say this today here in this church as we approach Holy Communion, as we approach the light and life of the world today: you are Christ, the Son of the living God, who came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the first.” We say this not to crush ourselves down, but as St. Paul tells us to today’s Epistle, but that we might be “mercifully treated, so that in me, as the foremost, Christ Jesus might display all his patience as an example for those who would come to believe in him for everlasting life.” Only in faith, then, do we see the true “light and life.”

Meditation by Archpriest David Petras

Parish announcements for this week

THIS WEEKEND

1. The Ukrainian Ridna Shkola invites everyone to our annual Community Ukrainian Christmas Carol which will be held in St. Michael’s Church hall on Sunday, January 22 at 12:00 noon. All are welcome to participate in this wonderful tradition

2. The Ukrainian American Veterans Bishop John Stock Post 33 will hold its first meeting of the New Year on Sunday, January 22, 2017 beginning at 9:45 A.M. and ending 10:30 A.M. This time frame is between 1st and 2nd Divine Liturgy.

The meeting will be held in Classroom 2 and it will last no more than 40 minutes. Current members are asked to submit agenda items to the post Commander by the Sunday before the scheduled meeting. If you are a Ukrainian American that has served or are currently serving in the U.S. military, you cordially invited to attend this meeting and to consider joining the organization . For more information, e-mail the Post Commander, Carl R. Harvey: crharv3841@optimum.net.

THIS WEEK

3. All new announcements for upcoming events should be submitted to rectory office before Tuesday of the week prior to when the event is to be posted in the bulletin.

4. Ukrainian food items for sale

We have for sale stuff cabbage with meat ($18 per dozen) cabbage with sausage ($6 per container).

We will have frozen pyrohy for sale for as long as our supply lasts. See Walter Ushchak for the food after the 9:00 a.m. Divine Liturgy in the Church Hall.

5. St. Michael’s parish invites you to a Valentine’s Day lunch-dance on February 12, 2017 at 12:30 p.m. Live music and full dinner will be served. Tickets are $ 30.00 for adults, $20.00 for students and free for children under 12 years old.

6. SUMA Federal Credit Union, New Haven Branch, 555 George St., New Haven, CT. Business hours: Tues. 3:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.; Sat. 9:00am to 12:30 p.m.

Phone (203) 785-8805; Fax: (203) 785-8677.

7. A container is in our church vestibule for non-perishable food. This collection will be taken every week. Father Iura will distribute the food to those in need.

Thank you for your generosity. Judy Ellis is spearheading this parish initiative.

8. The Knights of Columbus Blessed Andrey Sheptytsky will hold its next regular meeting on Monday, February 6, 2017 at 7:00 p.m. in the church hall. All men of parish are invited to attend to see what the Knights are all about and what can do for our parish.

Divine Liturgy this week

GLORY TO JESUS CHRIST * SLAVA ISUSU XRYSTU!

Sun., January 22, 2017    36th Sunday after Pentecost

9:00 a.m.   +Nicholas Muryn, requested by Mary and Michael Muryn
10:30 a.m.   PRO POPULO*ZA PARAFI|N

Epistle: 1 Tim. 1:15-17
Gospel: Mt. 18: 35-43, Tone 3

***

Mon., January 23, 2017    The Holy Martyr Clement
8:00 a.m.     no intention for the Liturgy

Tue., January 24, 2017    The Venerable Xenia
8:00 a.m.    no intention for the Liturgy

Wed., January 25, 2017    The Holy Bishop Gregory the Theologian
8:00 a.m.    no intention for the Liturgy

Thur., January 26, 2017    The Venerables Xenophon and Mary
8:00 a.m.    no intention for the Liturgy

Fri., January 27, 2017    Translation of the Relics of St. John Chrysostom
8:00 a.m.    no intention for the Liturgy

Sat., January 28, 2017    The Venerable Ephrem the Syrian
8:00 a.m.    no intention for the Liturgy

***

Sun., January 29, 2017    Sunday of Zacchaeus
9:00 a.m.      Special Intention
10:30 a.m.    PRO POPULO*ZA PARAFI|N

Epistle: 1 Tim. 4:9-15
Gospel: Lk. 19:1-10, Tone 4

35th Sunday after Pentecost

young manColossians 3:12-16; Luke 18:18-27 (Readings of the 30th Sunday after Pentecost)

We have just celebrated the great feast of our Lord’s baptism. By being baptized ourselves, we have become Christians, “God’s chosen ones,” as St. Paul reminds us in this Sunday’s Epistle, “Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, heartfelt compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience, bearing with one another and forgiving one another, if one has a grievance against another; as the Lord has forgiven you, so must you also do. And over all these put on love, that is, the bond of perfection (Colossians 3:12-14)” To be a Christian means to choose life, not necessarily the life we want, but the life God has opened for us. The rich young man could not accept this choice. He refused to give his riches to the poor, he selfishly kept his riches for himself. He refused to be among God’s chosen ones, to feed the hungry, to give drink to the thirsty, the give shelter to the homeless, cloth the naked, to visit those who are sick or in prison.

St. Anthony the Great heard this gospel, and transformed Christian life, creating an army of those who chose Christian perfection; St. Francis of Assisi heard this gospel, and transformed the Church, re-orienting it on the path of love for the poor, in its constant need for reformation. Today this same choice lies before us, and while we may not transform the world, we can find salvation and we can spread “compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience” among those in our lives.

Meditation by Archpriest David Petras