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Church Bulletin: December 31, 2017

posted Jan 1, 2018, 8:48 AM by Saint Raphael of Brooklyn Antiochian Orthodox Church
Sunday December 31, 2017- Sunday before the Theophany of Christ

This Week's Services and Events

January 2, Tuesday
        + Free Lunch Program Volunteering, 11:30AM-1:00PM
        + Office Hours, 1:15PM-3:45PM
        + 9th Hour Prayers, 3:00PM

January 3, Wednesday
        + Office Hours, 11:30AM-3:00PM
        + 9th Hour Prayers, 3:00PM
        + Akathist, 7:00PM

January 4, Thursday
        + Office Hours, 12:00PM-4:00PM
        + 9th Hour Prayers, 3:00PM

January 5, Friday
        + Royal Hours of Theophany, 9:00AM
        + Festal Matins of Theophany, 4:45PM
        + Liturgy of Theophany with Blessing of Water, 6:00PM

January 6, Saturday
        + Pan-Orthodox Outdoor Blessing of Water, 4:00PM
        + Great Vespers followed by Potluck Supper, 5:00PM

January 7, Sunday after the Theophany of Christ
        + Matins, 8:45AM
        + Divine Liturgy, 10:00AM followed by Fellowship Hour and Sunday School

Upcoming Events and Announcements-   

January/February Calendars Available-
        Calendars showing services and other events for the months on January and February are printed and now available at church.

Feasting After Fasting-
        We fasted for forty days to prepare for the celebration of the Nativity of Christ.  And now, we feast.  From December 25 through January 4, there are no fasting restrictions.  Let us be thankful to God for good food and for friends and family to share it with!

No Office Hours on Friday-
        Fr. Ignatius will not be holding office hours on Friday, January 5.

        We will have Royal Hours at 9:00AM on Friday, January 5.  Later that day, at 4:45, we will have festal matins followed by Liturgy with Blessing of the Water (indoors) at 6:00PM.  On Saturday, January 6 at 4:00PM, we are hosting pan-Orthodox vespers at the pedestrian bridge spanning the Iowa River near Iowa River Power Restaurant on 1st Avenue in Coralville.  Vespers will follow at St. Raphael Church at 5:00PM.  We will be hosting a potluck dinner following vespers, for our visiting guests from other parishes.   A sign-up sheet is posted in the narthex.

Epistle Reading Sign-up Sheet-
        Anybody is welcome to sign-up to read an Epistle reading on a Sunday, men, women and children.  A sign-up sheet for the whole year is posted at the top of the stairs.  If you are interested and want to know how to do it, talk with Subdeacons Panteleimon or Anthony (Todd and Bill) or Fr. Ignatius.  Readers of others languages (than English) are welcome too!  

House Blessing Season-
        The 2018 House Blessing season will be short due to Father's travels early in January and an early start of Lent.  Fr. Ignatius will be available to bless your home from January 16-February 17.  Father wants to come to your house, even if he came last year.  Meals or refreshments are not expected or necessary (but will they be refused!)  Contact him to set up a day and time for him to come.  

2018 Annual Calendars Available-
        The yearly calendar which shows daily saints commemorated, daily Scripture readings, festal celebrations and fasting days and seasons, is available in the narthex at church.  Take one or more home with you. 

Do You Shop at Amazon.com?-
        If you make purchases on Amazon.com, there is a simple and easy way to benefit the church while doing so.  If you go to Amazon's companion site, smile.amazon.com, you will find all of the same items for purchase (at the same prices) as are found on the main site.  Once you sign in, you will be asked what charity you would like to benefit.  Enter "St. Raphael of Brooklyn Orthodox Christian Mission" and 0.5% of qualifying purchases will be given back to the church.  It's that simple.  

Food for All--Kalona
        Please  continue to pray for our Orthodox-style, community-style charity work. Also ask our Lord to draw people to Himself and His Church through all our programs. Visit our website at foodforallkalona.weebly.com. For more info, email me at foodforallkalona@gmail.com.  Thanks! Amy Spencer   

Next Sunday's Gospel Reading-
        At that time, John saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God, Who takes away the sin of the world! This is He of Whom I said, ‘After me comes a man Who ranks before me, for He was before me.’ I myself did not know Him; but for this I came baptizing with water, that He might be revealed to Israel.” And John bore witness, “I saw the Spirit descend as a dove from heaven, and it remained on Him. I myself did not know Him; but He Who sent me to baptize with water said to me, ‘He on Whom you see the Spirit descend and remain, this is He Who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’ And I have seen and have borne witness that this is the Son of God.” (John 1:29-34) 

   Pray for our Catechumens-

        Please keep our catechumens Ilya Buchkin, Jeremiah Kaufmann, Scott Dorr, Brian and Rene Horak in your prayers as they prepare to be sacramentally joined to the Orthodox Church.

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 know. 
Remember Your Departed Loved Ones With Flowers-
        Would you like to memorialize your departed loved ones with a bouquet of flowers to be placed in the church on the weekend of your choice?  Look for the new Memorial sign-up sheet.  Decide what weekend you would like your loved one(s) remembered, give $25 to the church, clearly marking it for "Memorial Flowers" and your loved one(s) will be mentioned during the Great Entrance prayers and in the weekly bulletin.  If your departed loved ones are Orthodox, and you would like Trisagion Prayers for the Departed to be offered at the end of Liturgy, you can indicate that on the sign-up sheet as well.

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 been heard from.  Please pray for their well being and release and also pray for their captors as well.  To sign a petition urging the US Government and others to work for their release, go to:

Food for Thought-

Today is born of the Virgin, Him Who holdeth all creation in the hollow of His hand.
He Whose essence is untouchable is wrapped in swaddling clothes as a babe.
The God Who from of old established the heavens, lieth in a manger.
He Who showered the people with manna in the wilderness feedeth on milk from His mother's breasts.
And the bridegroom of the Church calleth the Magi, and the Son of the Virgin accepteth gifts from them.
We worship Thy Nativity, O Christ. 
We worship Thy Nativity, O Christ.
We worship Thy Nativity, O Christ.
Show us also Thy divine Theophany!

Doxastikon of the 9th Hour of the Royal Hours of Nativity