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Church Bulletin: July 27, 2014

posted Jul 27, 2014, 6:17 PM by Saint Raphael of Brooklyn Antiochian Orthodox Church
July 27, 2014- Feast of the Great-martyr Panteleimon and the 7th Sunday after Pentecost
This Week's Services and Events

July 29, Tuesday
        + Teen SOYO serving meal at Ronald McDonald House, 3:45PM (meet at church)

July 30, Wednesday
        + Akathist, 7PM

August 1, Friday
        + Matins, 8:30AM
        + Office Hours, 9:30AM-11:30AM
        + Paraklesis, 7PM

August 2, Saturday
        + Teen SOYO Adventureland trip, meeting at church at 8:30AM
        + Nutrition Class, 3:30PM
        + 9th Hour/Great Vespers, 6PM
August 3, 8th Sunday after Pentecost
        + Matins, 8:45AM
        + Divine Liturgy, 10AM, followed by coffee hour
Upcoming Events and Announcements 

Looking Ahead to August-
       The first two weeks of August are a busy time in the Church.  The Dormition Fast is observed from August 1-14, during which we avoid meat, dairy, and eggs.  During the week, Monday-Friday, we also avoid wine and oil, the exception being August 6, the Feast of the Transfiguration, when wine and oil are allowed.  If you need any guidance regarding fasting, please speak with Fr. Ignatius.  We will pray the Paraklesis Service to the Theotokos at 7PM on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays during this period.  On August 5 at 6PM, we will have vesperal liturgy for the Feast of the Transfiguration.  We will have reader's vespers for the Feast of the Dormition on August 14 at 7PM.  Father Ignatius will be at Camp St. George serving assisting camp director Fr. Patrick Kinder from August 10 (after liturgy) through August 16.   

Fr. Ignatius on Vacation this Week-
       Fr. Ignatius will be on vacation and out of town this Monday, July 28 through Thursday, July 31. 

Mid-year Financial Update-
       December 31, 2013: General Fund- $21,911; Building Fund- $21,055
March 31, 2014: General Fund- $21,592; Building Fund- $19,652
June 30, 2014: General Fund- $21,275; Building Fund- $18,138
From the above figures, we can see that our general fund is staying quite constant.  Our building fund, from which we draw funds to help pay the portion of our monthly mortgage which is not covered by members' pledges, is being drawn down at approximately the pace we expected.  At this pace, our building fund will most certainly not outlast the term of our mortgage loan and so we must plan for how to continue to pay off that debt, being good stewards over that which God has given us.  We can pray and act so that God may give us growth in members so that the church's income would grow, and we can also pray and plan for possible future fundraisers to help reduce our mortgage debt, which currently stands at $272,523, with $204,011 equity in the building.

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

St. George Cedar Rapids 100th Anniversary Celebrations-
       Our mother church, St. George Orthodox Church in Cedar Rapids is celebrating their centennial, 100 years of existence August 29-31.  We will not have matins or liturgy at St. Raphael Church on Sunday, August 31.  Please go to St. George for liturgy that morning.  Either Metropolitan Joseph or Bishop Anthony will be presiding.  In addition, if you want to attend one or both of the celebratory banquets, and/or the hafli, registration forms can be found at: http://www.stgeorgecedarrapids.org/files/centennial%20forms/RegistrationFormREV_0514.pdfEarly bird registration discount ends July 31! 

Nutrition Class with Dr. Julia Buchkina-
       This summer, St. Raphael member Dr. Julia Buchkina is offering a four part class series on nutrition.  The remaining dates are Saturdays-  August 2, and August 30.  Topics will be:  Practical Cooking Skills Workshop; Understanding Your Numbers.  Classes are from 3:30PM-5:30PM.

Teen SOYO Events-
       The teens are serving a meal at the Ronald McDonald House this Tuesday, July 29, meeting at the church at 3:45PM.  On Saturday, August 2, they will be going to the Adventureland amusement park, meeting at the church at 8:30AM.  They will meet to see a movie at the Sycamore theatres on August 23. 

You Are Needed for a 2014 OCMC Mission Team!-
       The Orthodox Christian Mission Center (OCMC) is seeking 10 volunteers to help fill teams that will serve in Albania, Tanzania and Uganda later this year. The Albania team departing on September 17th will lead spiritual retreats for clergy wives, women lay leaders and women's groups. The Tanzania team departing on October 27th will offer theological training for the clergy of the Metropolis of Mwanza. And, the Uganda team, also departing on October 27th will offer Christian stewardship workshops to clergy and laity in various communities. Are you able to serve on one of these teams? If so, you are urgently needed! Without 10 additional volunteers these teams may not go. Please visit http://www.ocmc.org/about/open_teams.aspx, or contact OCMC’s Teams Department by e-mail at teams@ocmc.org or by phone at 1-877-463-6784 for more information and to apply.

Internet Resources for Lives of the Saints-
       Becoming familiar with the lives of the saints is invaluable for spiritual growth.  In the saints, we see God's goodness and truth manifest.  Saints are theology in the flesh because they imitate Christ who is God in the flesh.  If you are looking for online resources to learn about saints, organized according to the day the church remembers them, check out: http://oca.org/saints/lives or http://www.abbamoses.com or http://www.rocor.org.au/?page_id=925

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.

Last Interview of Metropolitan Boulos (Paul) of Aleppo-
       To read excerpts from the last known interview of Metropolitan Boulos of Aleppo before his kidnapping, go to: http://www.johnsanidopoulos.com/2014/07/the-last-interview-of-metropolitan-paul.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+Mystagogy+%28MYSTAGOGY%29

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew Speaks on Same-Sex Coupling-
       Recently, Patriarch Bartholomew gave an address to the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of North America.  One of the subjects he spoke on was the co-habitation of same-sex couples.  The link to these comments is: http://myocn.net/ecumenical-patriarch-cohabitation-sex-couples-contrary-gospel/

Spiritual Retreat at New Gracanica Monastery in Chicago-
       "Thoughts in the Service of Sanctity" is the title of an upcoming retreat to be held at New Gracanica Serbian Orthodox Monastery in the Chicago area, co-sponsored by the monastery and the St. Paisius Missionary School.  The retreat will be held August 8-11.  For more information, look for the poster in the church narthex, or go to: http://www.stpaisius.org/conferences/

An Invitation-
       Fr. Fred and Kh. Michelle Shaheen invite you to be with them for
the Baptism of Harry Demetrios Shaheen on Thursday, August 21, 2014 at 5:30 pm at St. George Orthodox Church in Cedar Rapids.  Dinner reception to follow in the Michael G. Nassif Education and Cultural Center.

Thoughts on Stewardship and Giving-      
        “Now the multitude of those who believed were of one heart and one soul; neither did anyone say that any of the things he possessed was his own, but they had all things in common. And with great power the apostles gave witness to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And great grace was upon them all. Nor was there anyone among them who lacked; for all who were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the proceeds of the things that were sold, and laid them at the apostles’ feet; and they distributed to each as anyone had need.”  (Acts 4:32-35)

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
Sunday.  The reading for Sunday, August 3 is:  "At that time, when Jesus went ashore he saw a great throng; and he had compassion on them, and healed their sick.  When it was evening, the disciples came to Him and said, “This is a lonely place, and the day is now over; send the crowds away to go into the villages and buy food for themselves.”  Jesus said, “They need not go away; you give them something to eat.”  They said to Him, “We have only five loaves here and two fish.”  And He said, “Bring them here to Me.”  Then He ordered the crowds to sit down on the grass; and taking the five loaves and the two fish He looked up to Heaven, and blessed, and broke and gave the loaves to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds.  And they all ate and were satisfied.  And they took up twelve baskets full of the broken pieces left over.  And those who ate were about five thousand men, besides women and children.  Then Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go before Him to the other side, while He dismissed the crowds." (Matthew 14:14-22)

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

Holy Bread-
       For the liturgy on August 3, the holy bread will be provided by the Van Dinter family.  Thank you in advance.

Coffee Hour-
        On Sunday August 3, the food for coffee hour and clean-up of the fellowship hall will be provided by the St. Nicholas team.

Church Cleaning-
       During the week of July 27-August 2, the nave, narthex, bookstore, stairs, nursery and bathrooms will be cleaned by the St. Nina team.

Choir Leadership-
       During the weekend of August 2-3, Tania Van Dinter will lead the choir. 

Food for Thought-

Truly my soul waits for God; from Him comes my salvation.  He only is my rock and salvation; He is my defense; I shall not be greatly moved.  How long will you attack a man?  You shall be slain, all of you, like a leaning wall and a tottering fence.  They only contrive to defy my honor; they delight in lies; they bless with their mouth, but they curse inwardly.  My soul waits silently for God alone, for my expectation is from Him.  Only He is my rock and my salvation; He is my defense; I shall not be moved.  In God is my salvation and my glory; the rock of my strength, and my refuge is in God.  Trust in Him at all times, you people; pour out your heart before Him; God is a refuge for us.  Surely men of low degree are vanity, men of high degree are a lie; if they are weighed in the balances, they are altogether lighter than vanity.  Trust not in oppression, and lust not after robberies; if riches increase, do not set your heart on them.  God has spoken once, twice I have heard this: that power belongs to God.  Also to You, O Lord, belongs mercy; for You render to each man according to his work.

Psalm 61, The Psalter, HDM Press