schedule of services and events February 25 – March 4

Wednesday, February 28
6 PM Presanctified Liturgy at Assumption Greek Orthodox Church

Friday, March 2
1 pm to 5 PM Dorothy Day Soup Kitchen
7 PM Salutation Service to the Mother of God at Assumption Greek Orthodox Church

Sunday, March 4
10 AM Divine Liturgy served by Fr. Sergei Bouteneff

Readers Schedule
3 / 4 - Paul Sulich
3/11 – Bob Faubel

Coffee Hour
3 / 4 – Suzanne
3/11 – Missions Brunch
3/18 – Lenten Cook-off

New Rectory Update

The new Rectory has been delivered and set by Westchester Modular Homes. There is still a lot of work to be done on the interior and exterior over the next several months. The garage foundation is in but the rest of it will be built on site. The good news was that we were able to get a full sized basement and not just a crawl space.   As I was taking a little peek of the progress I noticed that there was  a great view of the church through the New Kitchen window.

2018 Lenten Archpastoral Letter

GREAT LENT 2018 - Protocol N. 3/2018 My Beloved Faithful Clergy and Laity of Our God-Protected Diocese: As we begin Holy and Great Lent this year on February 19th, I wanted to share with you a few thoughts so that we may journey through the season and arrive safely at the Great Feast of Feasts, Holy Pascha with the proper frame of mind. Holy and Great Lent is a truly beautiful period of time filled with moments in which we can focus our hearts and our minds on the grace of God. Through daily prayer, fasting, worship, and giving to others and by the grace of God our lives will continue to be transformed by Him and our souls will be drawn closer and closer to our Lord Jesus Christ! In the hymns and services of the Triodion period and at the entrance of this holy season of Great Lent, we are called to repentance. We are invited to come before God in the humility of the Publican. We are beckoned to return to His dwelling and His compassionate embrace as the Prodigal Son. We are confronted with the causes of our separation from God and our need for His great mercy. It is truly a time of repentance as we prepare to commemorate and contemplate all that has been done for us through Christ our Lord. This solemn and reflective journey is not one of despair. This is not a time of inconsolable grief or deep anguish and anxiety. Holy and Great Lent is a time of spiritual renewal in which repentance finds forgiveness and grace, engenders hope, strengthens our faith and leads us to abundant and eternal life. We know through the Gospel that genuine repentance receives forgiveness and grace. The sincerity of the Publican expressed in his cry, “God, be merciful to me a sinner” was recognized by God, and his sins were forgiven (Luke 18:13 – 14). We also know that repentance nurtures hope. God’s grace transforms us, as we see the blessedness of life restored to communion with Him, we experience the joy of hope. For the Prodigal Son it was the journey to return to the house of his father, hoping that something better awaited. As through repentance we receive forgiveness and grace and our hearts are filled with hope, our faith is strengthened. As we prepare to celebrate the fulfillment of God’s promise to defeat death, restore us to life, and lead us to the Resurrection, our faith in Him grows. At the beginning of Great Lent, let us contemplate the power of repentance and take this opportunity to examine our hearts and minds. Let us pray for humility in seeking the forgiveness and grace of God, returning to communion with Him. Let us find renewed hope in the light, peace and joy that comes from our Crucified and Risen Christ. I pray that this Holy and Great Lent season is a spiritually uplifting time for all of us. Working in His Vineyard with much love for all of you, +BISHOP GREGORY OF NYSSA

2017 Nativity Pastoral Letter

Protocol. No. 15/2017 December 25, 2017 / January 7, 2018 CHRIST IS BORN! GLORIFY HIM! Dear Beloved Brothers and Sisters in Christ, As we celebrate this joyous Feast of the Nativity in the flesh of our Lord, God and Saviour Jesus Christ, I wish to share with you one of my favorite Christmas homilies from the Church Fathers concerning this day. St. John Chrysostom spoke on the Incarnation with these words: “I behold a new and wondrous mystery! My ears resound to the shepherd’s song, piping no soft melody, but loudly chanting a heavenly hymn! The Angels sing! The Archangels blend their voices in harmony! The Cherubim resound their joyful praise! The Seraphim exalt His glory! All join to praise this Holy Feast, beholding the Godhead herein…on earth and man in heaven. He Who is above now, for our salvation, dwells here below; and we, who were lowly, are exalted by divine mercy. Today Bethlehem resembles heaven, hearing from the stars the singing of angelic voices and, in place of the sun, witnessing the rising of the Sun of Justice! Ask not how it is accomplished, for where God wills, the order of nature is overturned. For He willed, He had the powers, He descended. He saved. All things move in obedience to God. Today He Who Is, is born! And He Who Is becomes what He was not! For when He was God, He became man while not relinquishing the Godhead that is His… And so the kings have come, and they have seen the heavenly King that has come upon the earth, not bringing with Him angels, nor archangels, nor thrones, nor dominions, nor powers, nor principalities, but treading a new and solitary path, He has come forth from a spotless womb. Yet, He has not forsaken His angels, nor left them deprived of His care, nor because of His Incarnation has He ceased being God. And behold Kings have come, that they might serve the Leader of the Hosts of Heaven; women, that they might adore Him Who was born of a woman so that He might change the pains of childbirth into joy; virgins, to the Son of the Virgin… Infants, that they may adore Him Who became a little Child, so that out of the mouths of infants He might perfect praise; Children, to the Child Who raised martyrs through the rage of Herod; Men, to Him Who became man that He might heal the miseries of His servants; Shepherds, to the Good Shepherd Who laid down His life for the sheep; Priests, to Him Who has become a High Priest according to the order of Melchizedek; Servants, to Him Who took upon Himself the form of a servant, that He might bless our stewardship with the reward of freedom; Fishermen, to the Fisher of humanity; Publicans, to Him Who from among them names a chosen evangelist; Sinful women, to Him Who exposed His feet to the tears of the repentant woman; And that I may embrace them all together, all sinners have come, that they may look upon the Lamb of God Who takes away the sins of the world! Since, therefore, all rejoice, I too desire to rejoice! I too wish to share the choral dance, to celebrate the festival! But I take my part, not plucking the harp nor with the music of the pipes nor holding a torch, but holding in my arms the cradle of Christ! For this is all my hope! This is my life! This is my salvation! This is my pipe, my harp! And bearing it, I come, and having from its power received the gift of speech, I too, with the angels and shepherds, sing: Glory to God in the Highest! And on earth peace to men of good will.” Amen. Today may all of us, Priests, Panis, Deacons, Sub-Deacons, Readers, Parish Officers, Parishioners, Friends, and Supporters of our God-protected American Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Diocese experience the joy and wonders of the Shepherds and the awe and respect of the Three Wise Men at the arrival of the Messiah, our new born King. Christ is Born! Greetings from Johnstown with much love, +Bishop Gregory of Nyssa

Schedule of services and events February 18 – February 25

Monday, February 19
8 AM – Lenten Hours
6 PM – Canon of St. Andrew

Tuesday, February 20
8:30 AM – Lenten Hours
9 AM –Perogie session
6 PM – Canon of St. Andrew

Wednesday, February 21
9 AM – Lenten Hours
6 PM – Presanctified Liturgy followed by Lenten Meal
7 PM – Catechism Class

Thursday, February 22
8:30 AM – Akathist of Repentance
9 AM – Prayer Group
6 PM – Canon of St. Andrew

Friday, February 23 9 AM – Lenten Hours
9:30 AM - Old Testament Class
6 PM – Paraklis Service

Saturday, February 24
10 AM to 12 noon – Church School
5 PM – Vespers

Sunday, February 25
10 AM –Liturgy – Sunday of Orthodoxy Procession with Icons

Schedule of services and events for February 11 – February 18

Monday, February 12
7 PM – Spirituality Class

Tuesday, February 13
8:30 AM – Third Hour

Wednesday, February 14
7 PM – Catechism Class

Thursday, February 15
8:30 AM – Akathist
9:30 AM – Prayer Group

Friday, February 16
9 AM – Old Testament Class

Saturday, February 17
5 PM – Anointing Service to St. Nectarios
5:30 PM – Potluck Fund-raising Dinner for Jacob’s Family

Sunday, February 18
10 AM – Divine Liturgy – Sunday of Forgiveness – Rite of Forgiveness at the end of Liturgy