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Church Bulletin: March 3, 2013

posted Mar 4, 2013, 11:16 AM by Saint Raphael of Brooklyn Antiochian Orthodox Church
March 3, 2013- Sunday of the Prodigal Son
This Week's Services and Events
Mar 4, Monday
        + 3rd Hour Prayers, 9AM
        + Father's Office Hours, 9:15AM-11:30AM
        + Teen SOYO Book Club and dinner, 6:30PM
Mar 5, Tuesday
        + Free Lunch Program Volunteering, 11:30AM-1:30PM
Mar 6, Wednesday
        + Akathist, 7PM
Mar 7, Thursday
        + OCF Dinner, 7PM
Mar 8, Friday
        + Matins, 8:30AM
Mar 9, Saturday
        + Choir Practice, 9AM-11:30AM
        + 9th Hour and Great Vespers, 6PM
Mar 10, Sunday, Sunday of the Last Judgment (Meatfare Sunday)
        + Matins, 8:45AM
        + Divine Liturgy, 10AM, followed by coffee hour and Sunday School
Upcoming Events and Announcements
Daylight Savings Time Begins Next Sunday-
        Believe it or not, Daylight Savings Time begins next Sunday, March 10. Remember to set your clocks forward one hour when you go to bed on Saturday evening.
March-April Calendars Now Available-
        The calendars detailing the (lots and lots of )services and other events over the next two months (March and April) are now printed and available in the church narthex for you to pick up.
Charitable projects-
        (1) Karen Kuntz has perfected the formula for the Everything Good Lotion Bars, and they will be on sale in the church bookstore and elsewhere soon. (2) The cookbook is taking shape. Please ask God for grace and peace for the final editing stages and copies in hand by the first farmer's market. (3) We plan to participate in the Iowa City Farmer's Market, hopefully once a month from May to October. We'd love to see many people involved, as it will be lots of fun. If you're interested, contact Amy Spencer, Tania Van Dinter, Karen Kuntz, Alli Rockwell, or Father.
Holy Baptism of David Iovanov, March 16-
        On March 16 at 12PM, all are invited to attend the baptism of David Iovanov, son of Mio Iovanov and Lavinia Ciungu, a new family at our church.
        Congratulations are in order for Fr. Peter and Pres. Magda Andronache and family (St. John the Baptist Church, Cedar Rapids) and Fr. Fred and Kh. Michelle Shaheen and family (St. George Church, Cedar Rapids). Both families had a child baptized this weekend. Timothy Andronache was baptized on March 2 and Zoe Shaheen was baptized on March 3. May God grant them both many years!
Teen SOYO Events-
        Our Teen SOYO group will be holding a book discussion and dinner on March 4 at 6:30PM. On March 11 at 6:30PM, they will be gathering for dinner and a movie.
March Parish Council Meeting-
        Our March 2013 Parish Council meeting will be on Tuesday, March 12 at 7PM. All are welcome to attend.
First Pastoral Letter of Patriarch John X-
        To read the text of the first (and a very good!) pastoral letter of our father in Christ, Patriarch John X, go to: http://araborthodoxy.blogspot.com/2013/02/john-xs-vision-for-patriarchate-of.html. Father Ignatius highly recommends it.
        It is time to begin thinking about modifiying your diet for Lent. Plan your grocery shopping accordingly. Sunday March 10, Meatfare Sunday, is the last day to eat meat until Pascha. On Monday, March 18, the full Lenten fast begins. The Church asks us to abstain from meat (with the exception of fish on March 25 for the Annunciation and April 28 for Palm Sunday) until Great and Holy Pascha, May 5. Shellfish are OK. The full Lenten fast also includes abstention from dairy, eggs, oil and wine (oil and wine are permitted on the weekends). Fast as you are able with these standards being the goal. Exceptions can be made for those who are very young, very old, ill, pregnant, nursing, or infirm. If you have any questions about fasting, please ask Fr. Ignatius. May our fasting from certain foods help us to find some humility as we struggle to fast from sin.
The Lenten Prayer of St. Ephraim-
        O Lord and Master of my life,
Take from me the spirit of sloth, meddling, lust of power and idle talk.
But give rather the spirit of chastity, humility, patience and love to thy servant.
Yea, O Lord and King, grant me to see my own sins and not to judge my brother,
For Thou art blessed unto ages of ages. Amen.
Almsgiving (Food For Hungry People Program)-
        Along with fasting, prayer and repentance, almsgiving is one of the pillars of the Lenten time. Look for ways to be generous with others and let your giving be as anonymous as possible. One easy way to give something to those in need is to participate in the Archdiocesan Food For Hungry People Program which collects money for all of the Antiochian parishes and gives it to various programs that serve the hungry. Look for collection boxes at church in the narthex next Sunday.
        Lent is the perfect time to make a confession. If it has been awhile since your last one, don't let another Lent go by without making one. This is medicine for our souls. Take advantage of what God has to offer through His Church- the forgiveness of your sins. If you have never made a confession, or if you have any questions about how to prepare for one or what takes place during a confession, feel free to speak with Fr. Ignatius. He is available after Saturday vespers, at the end of Sunday matins (right before the beginning of Liturgy) or other times by appointment if you would like to schedule a time to receive this sacrament.
Lent Begins on March 18 (Actually the Evening of March 17)-
        We will mark the beginning of Lent with Forgiveness Vespers at 6PM on Sunday, March 17. This beautiful and solemn service during which we each seek forgiveness of all present sets our minds and our spirits in the proper context for beginning the Lenten journey. Let us always be quick to apologize and quick to forgive. The first week of Lent is filled with services. Try to alter your schedule and come to at least one or two of them. Here is our schedule.
Sunday, March 17- Forgiveness Vespers, 6PM
Monday, March 18- Great Compline with Canon of St. Andrew, 7PM
Tuesday, March 19- Great Compline with Canon of St. Andrew, 7PM
Wednesday, March 20- Liturgy of Presanctified Gifts followed by a Lenten Soup Supper, 6PM
Thursday, March 21- Little Compline with Canon of St. Andrew, 7PM
Friday, March 22- Little Compline with Akathist Hymn to the Theotokos, 7PM
Lenten Pan-Orthodox Sunday Vespers-
        As has been the tradition for several years, we are invited to attend vespers at various Orthodox churches in Eastern Iowa on Sunday evenings during Lent and in turn, we will be hosting clergy and the faithful from these churches at St. Raphael. Each vespers service begins at 5:30PM and is followed by a fellowship meal provided by the hosting church. The schedule is as follows:
March 24- St. John the Baptist Greek Orthodox Church, Cedar Rapids (501 A Avenue NE)
March 31- St. Raphael of Brooklyn Antiochian Orthodox Church, Iowa City (722 E. College St.)
April 7- St. Elias the Prophet Greek Orthodox Church, Dubuque (1075 Rockdale Rd.)
April 14- St. George Antiochian Orthodox Church, Cedar Rapids (3650 Cottage Grove Ave. SE)
April 21- St. Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church, Waterloo (613 W. Fourth St.)
Lenten Wednesday Evenings-
        On Wednesday evenings during Lent, we gather for the Liturgy of the Pre-Sanctified Gifts at 6PM. Following the service, we will share a simple lenten soup supper. There will be a sign-up sheet posted in the narthex so that people can sign-up to provide the meal each week.
Two Weeks Left for House Blessings!-
        From now until the beginning of Lent (March 17), Fr. Ignatius is available to come to your home to bless it. A sign-up sheet is posted in the narthex. Suggest a date and time and Fr. Ignatius will check his calendar and arrange the visit.
Parish Directory Updates-
               Our last parish directory, containing members, and friend's names, addresses, phone numbers and email addresses was printed in 2011. It is time for an updated directory. Over the next few weeks, Fr. Ignatius will be contacting you and confirming the information he has for you, so that we can produce an accurate and updated 2013 directory.
Video Documenting Orthodox Missionary Work in Northern Kenya-
        The Orthodox Christian Mission Center has released at 17 minute video documentary on the recent evangelization work taking place among the Turkana people of Northern Kenya. To watch this video, go to: http://youtu.be/VO9AbyshWmk
Project Mexico and St. Innocent Orphanage-
        The combined ministries of Project Mexico and St. Innocent Orphanage provide many opportunities, especially in the summer, to build housing, work with orpahns and otherwise improve the lives of the low-income residents of Baja California, Mexico. To learn more about this worthy Orthodox ministry, go to: www.projectmexico.org
Parish Constitution Revision Committee-
        Our current parish constitution was revised about 4 years ago. It has come to the attention of some parish council members that perhaps some more revisions need to be made. If you would like to serve on a small committee to help make suggested changes that will be presented to the parish for a vote, please see Fr. Ignatius. The time commitment for this committee should be no longer than two months.
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.
Choir Leadership-
        During the weekend of March 9-10, the choir will be lead by Matthew Arndt.
Coffee Hour-
        On Sunday March 10, the food for coffee hour and the clean-up of the fellowship hall will be provided by the St. Raphael team.
Holy Bread-
        On Sunday, March 10, the holy bread will be provided by the Valentine family. Thank you in advance. Anyone can sign up to provide holy bread for future liturgies. Look for the sign-up sheet in the narthex.
Church Cleaning-
        During the week of March 3-9, the cleaning of the nave, narthex, bookstore, stairs, nursery and bathrooms will be accomplished by the St. Nina team.
Food for Thought
"Our task, nowadays, is to abolish the estrangement the believer feels between his Church affiliation and his affiliation to the world. This must be done because the believer must sanctify the world. The believing people, as a royal priesthood, are called to this divine mission to snatch the world away from its worldliness and bring it closer to God."
"In order for a Christian to accomplish his mission inside society, he needs first to accept and love this society, even if it contains dangerous trends, even if it is corrupt and evil, and even if its values conflict with the Christian conscience."
- Patriarch JOHN X of Antioch in his first Pastoral Letter