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Church Bulletin: August 24, 2014

posted Aug 24, 2014, 12:21 PM by Saint Raphael of Brooklyn Antiochian Orthodox Church
August 24, 2014- 11th Sunday after Pentecost
This Week's Services and Events

August 27, Wednesday
        +  Akathist, 7PM

August 30, Saturday
        + Nutrition Class with Dr. Julia Buchkina, 3:30PM-5:30PM
Upcoming Events and Announcements  

Fr. Ignatius is Out of Town-
       Fr. Ignatius will be on vacation from August  25 through September 1 and may not have reliable cell phone coverage during this time.  If you need to get in touch with a priest and can't reach Fr. Ignatius, please call Fr. Elias Khouri at 319-329-2562.

September/October Calendars Now Printed-
       The September/October calendars showing all services and church events are available in the narthex.

Sunday School is Starting Soon!-
       Our Sunday School program for ages 4-18 will begin on Sunday, September 7 following liturgy.  Registration forms have been handed out.  If you have not received one, please contact Alli Rockwell.  We will have a kick-off potluck picnic in the backyard at church on Saturday, September 6 from 11AM-1PM.  Plan to bring some food to share. 
Go to St. George Church, Cedar Rapids the weekend of August 30-31-
       There will be no services at St. Raphael Church on August 30-31.  Fr. Ignatius will be out of town.  Please go to our mother church, St. George (3650 Cottage Grove Ave. SE.)  Bishop Anthony will be their and they will be celebrating their 100th anniversary.  Arrive early if you want a seat and a parking space.  Vespers is at 4PM on Saturday and Sunday Matins starts at 8:45AM followed by hierarchical liturgy at 10:00AM.  To read a local newspaper article on St. George's upcoming celebrations (which also mentions St. Raphael Church), go to: http://thegazette.com/subject/life/tradition-of-faith-20140816

St. Maria’s Bread House

       St. Maria’s Bread House asks for your prayers as we work on creating a strong foundation for our organization and getting nonprofit status. The Bread House’s purpose is to create community to address food insecurity, malnourishment, and social isolation in the Kalona area as well as to provide an Orthodox witness. The board includes Newman Abuissa, Becky Morey, Bill Spencer, and three residents of Kalona. Amy Spencer is the Bread House’s executive director. Our first project was a free lunch in Kalona this summer that provided more than 600 lunches to 23 families plus 22 individuals, and we are excited about what the Bread House will become by God’s grace.

Former St. Raphael Member on Short-term Mission Trip to Kenya-
       Former St. Raphael member Andy Goodell will be traveling to Kenya in November as part of a short-term mission trip organized by the Orthodox Christian Mission Center.  While there, Andy will be teaching English.  If you are interested in learning more about her trip or if you are interested in supporting her financially, go to: AndyinKenya2014.wordpress.com

Pray for St. Elias Greek Orthodox Church in Dubuque-
       Please keep our brothers and sisters at St. Elias Church in Dubuque in your prayers.  http://www.kcrg.com/subject/news/roof-issues-cause-problems-at-dubuque-church-20140814  Update- Thankfully, they have begun to use the chapel of a local organization, Hillcrest Family Services.  They are able to use this facility until November for their services.

Church Members Looking for Short-term Housing-
       St. Raphael Church members Justin and Rachel Cornett-Olsson and their son Aster need to find a place to live from the end of August until December.  They are interested in house-sitting possibilities, or subletting an apartment.  If you are aware of any possibilities for them, contact Justin at justinfromtx@gmail.com

Nutrition Class with Dr. Julia Buchkina-
       This summer, St. Raphael member Dr. Julia Buchkina has been offering a  class on nutrition.  The remaining date is Saturday- August 30, 3:30PM-5:30PM.  The topic will be: Understanding Your Numbers. 

OCF Kick-off Dinner and Planning Meeting-
       The Orthodox Christian Fellowship college group will meet at 6:30PM on Thursday, September 4 at Robert and Lori Branch-Peterson's home for dinner and a meeting to plan their schedule for the rest of the year. 

Art and Flower Festival Benefit for Habitat for Humanity-
       Art. Food. Flowers. Family Fun! A day in the country at the 11th Annual Art & Flower Festival, taking place Saturday, September 6, 2014 from 10 am - 4 pm at Dave and Anna Geyer's farm, 20 miles west of Iowa City. This free admission, family-friendly event will include 20+ local artist booths selling everything from pottery to fiber art and metal works. Festival attendees can enjoy a slice of wood-fired oven pizza or a homemade ice cream cone while sitting at a picnic table under the trees watching live music. All are welcome to gather flowers and herbs in Anna's Cutting Garden, creating their own bouquets to take home and admire.  Artist registration fees, food proceeds and free-will donations will help support Iowa Valley Habitat's mission to provide safe, decent and affordable housing for families in our area.  Questions or need help registering as a vendor? Contact Laura Shoemaker at 319-337-8949 or laura@iowavalleyhabitat.org

Special Voters' Meeting, September 21-
       There will be a brief, one agenda item special voters' meeting during coffee hour following liturgy on Sunday, September 21.  At this meeting, we will decide whether or not to use funds that were left over from our sign project to either go toward a cross to be mounted on the façade of our building, or to get the electrical and gas line work done which is necessary to able to use the gas stove/oven that has been sitting idly in our furnace room.

Talk on Human Trafficking-
       Mercy Hospital is sponsoring a talk by Sister Emily Devine titled "Human Trafficking: Making a Difference" on Tuesday, September 23 from 6:30PM-7:30PM.  Location: Mercy Medical Plaza, 540 E. Jefferson St., Lower Level, McAuley Rooms.

Fr. Ignatius Speaking on Icons at Iowa City Public Library-
       Are you looking for an event to invite your non-Orthodox friends to?  Or, do you want to learn more about icons yourself?  On October 6, Fr. Ignatius will be giving a presentation titled "Meeting God Through Icons" at the Iowa City Public Library, Meeting Room A, at 7PM.  Information can also be found at: www.straphaelorthodoxchurch.org/events

Are You Looking for a Reason to Go to New York?-
       Our Metropolitan Joseph will be officially enthroned in his cathedral (St. Nicholas, in Brooklyn) during the weekend of December 5-7 with Patriarch John X presiding.

Bible Bowl and Oratorical Festival-
       Each year, our diocese offers two different competitions for teens (and one for adults), held at the Parish Life Conference.  The 2015 Parish Life Conference will be held in Grand Rapids, MI in June.  Teens from our parish have participated in and done very well in the Bible Bowl is recent years, winning trophies each time they have competed.  Instead of focusing on one book of the Bible, the 2015 Bible Bowl will focus on the life of our patron, St. Raphael of Brooklyn, as found in the book "Our Father Among the Saints Raphael Bishop of Brooklyn: Good Shepherd of the Lost Sheep in America" published by Antakya Press.  This theme was chosen by Metropolitan Philip before his repose, because 2015 is the 100th anniversary of the repose of St. Raphael.  Fr. Ignatius challenges teens (ages 13-19) to form a team and study and compete.  Adults can form a team as well.  We can win this at the diocesan level and go on to compete on the archdiocesan level!  In addition, if giving speeches is your thing (teens only), consider writing a speech for the Oratorical Festival, the theme of which is also the life of St. Raphael.  Information is posted in the narthex.  Talk to Fr. Ignatius if you would like to learn more.

Thoughts on Stewardship and Giving-      
        From the third-century document Didascalia Apostolorum… "Set aside part offerings and tithes and first fruits to Christ, the true High Priest, and to His ministers, even tithes of salvation to Him. . . . Today the oblations are offered through the bishops to the Lord God. For they are your high priests; but the priests and Levites are now the presbyters and deacons, and the orphans and widows. . . . Your fruits and the work of your hands present to him, that you may be blessed; your first fruits and your tithes and your vows and your part offerings give to him; for he has need of them that he may be sustained, and that he may dispense also to those who are in want, to each as is just for him."

Next Sunday's Gospel Reading-

       St. John Chrysostom urges Christians to preview the upcoming Sunday Gospel reading so that it may be fresh in your minds when you hear it next

 The reading for Sunday, August 31 is:  At that time, one came up to him, saying, “Teacher, what good deed must I do, to have eternal life?” And he said to him, “Why do you ask me about what is good? One there is who is good. If you would enter life, keep the commandments.” He said to him, “Which?” And Jesus said, “You shall not kill, You shall not commit adultery, You shall not steal, You shall not bear false witness, Honor your father and mother, and, You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” The young man said to him, “All these I have observed; what do I still lack?” Jesus said to him, “If you would be perfect, go, sell what you possess and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me.” When the young man heard this, he went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions. And Jesus said to his disciples, “Truly, I say to you, it will be hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” When the disciples heard this they were greatly astonished, saying, “Who then can be saved?” But Jesus looked at them and said to them, “With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”  (Matthew 19:16-26)

Pray for our Catechumens-
       Please keep our catechumens: Ilya Buchkin and Rob Bergenstock in your prayers as they prepare to be sacramentally joined to the Orthodox Church.
Keep Praying for Kidnapped Orthodox Bishops in Syria-
       Since April 22, 2013, the Orthodox Metropolitan of Aleppo, Metropolitan Paul, and the Syriac Metropolitan of Aleppo, Youhanna, have been in captivity and have not heard from.  Please pray for their well being and release and also pray for their captors as well.  One priest is also missing, having been kidnapped. 

Do You Have a Prayer Request?
        Please give it to Fr. Ignatius and he will distribute it by email to all those on the Prayer Chain. If you wish to join the Prayer Chain, please let Fr. Ignatius

Food for Thought-

“It is of great significance if there is a person who truly prays in a family. Prayer attracts God's Grace and all the members of the family feel it, even those whose hearts have grown cold. Pray always.”