Newsletter-September/October 2016

SACRAMENTAL AND SPIRITUAL PRIESTHOOD

“With fear of God, with faith and with love draw near.”

This is how God calls you forward to receive His Blood and Body through Holy Communion. Let us take a minute to examine this calling, my dear brothers and sisters in Christ. We are first called to approach God out of Fear. Why? If we truly believe that our God is the God of Love, why are we called out of fear? Because God is the God of Love, that is why we approach God out of Fear. Why? If we truly believe our God is the God of Love, why are we called out of fear? Because God is the God of Love, that is why we approach him out of fear. Stop and think about it for a moment which one of us can stand before God as a human and a sinner and say, “God I am worthy of You.” We can never justify our lives and salvation before God. Only God can save us and it is only God who makes us worthy of our salvation. The part we have in our salvation is what we hear next in this calling, “With faith” The part we play in our salvation is our faith that only God can save us. We turn our will and lives over to God so He can save us.

Finally, our calling says, “and with love draw near.” This why we respond to God’s call to salvation, because God loves us. God loves us and that is why He will save us. That is why we respond to God’s salvation out of love and why we love God—because of His love for us.

Our Lord not only calls us to receive Him in Holy Communion of out of fear, faith and love but He calls us to His three-fold saving works of Christ as king, priest and prophet. This calling is for his whole church. As a consequence of our Baptism and Chrismation every Christian continues the saving work of Christ in some form. St. John Chrysostom writes:

“Thus you Become king and priest and prophet in the washing (Baptism). A King in throwing down all evil acts and destroying sin; a Priest in offering yourself to God and sacrificing the body and dying to yourself; a Prophet in learning of the future and being filled and sealed with zeal.”

Peter Mogila, Bishop of Kiev, a writer of the 17th century, captures and summarizes this well documented, scriptural and patristic truth of the priesthood of all Christian.

“The priesthood is of two kinds, one is spiritual and the other sacramental. All Orthodox Christians share in the spiritual priesthood…and according to this priesthood, offerings are made such as these: prayers, thanksgivings, mortification of the body, a giving over to suffering for Christ’s sake, and other such things.”

Fr. Stanley Harakas in his book, “Living the Liturgy” believes:

“The sacramental priesthood is chosen and lifted up, set aside and ordained from out of the rank of the spiritual priesthood. The sacramental priesthood is the main agent in the work of the church in continuing the three-fold work of Christ. Yet, the work is that of the church, not just that of the sacramental priesthood.”

The work of the Church is shared by you the Laity who have the spiritual priesthood and us, the sacramental priesthood, the clergy, who have been called out of the ranks of the spiritual priesthood.

The place of the laity in fulfilling this three-fold work of the church is richly documented in the history of the Church. Today you, the laity, fulfill administratively the kingly role by supporting our Metropolitan Isaiah so that we may fulfill the administrative responsibilities laid out by our Lord and Savior.

The Laity have always shared in the teaching or prophetic role of the Church. Today you the laity, fulfill the prophetic role by the support and participation in the many programs offed you by your calling. Just a few would be the chanters, acolytes, those the work for the fund raising projects such as our annual back sale and the Oratorical Festival.

Regarding the priestly role of the Laity, did you know that the priest cannot properly conduct the Divine Liturgy alone?” There are no private services in the Orthodox rubrics. What is the answer to the question, “Who conducts the Divine Liturgy?” The answer is not, “The Priest”, as most would think, nor, of course, is the answer, “The Laity”. The answer is “The Church”. As you can see it is vital that you the laity exercise your priesthood with your prayers and thanksgiving through receiving the consecrated Body and Blood of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

The Priest as one of the members of the Body of Christ does not function without the other members of the Body of Christ, the Laity. The word “Liturgy” is made up of the two Greek words, “laos” which means “people” and “ergon” which means “work”. From the pre-Christian times “leitorgia” has meant a service to, for and by the people.

The only way that I may fully function as your priest and a member of the Body of Christ is if you expect me, allow, and work with me to serve you. Help my ministry be a service to, for and by the people. Help me to serve you that we may together fulfill God’s calling. Let us all work together, you the Laity and us your Clergy, that we can together go forward in fear, faith and love of God, that we can draw closer together in His Holy Church.

Your servant in Christ,

Fr. John

Parish News

Installation of new flooring in hall entrance, restroom hallway, and mud room made possible through donations from Kathy Parker, Idele Pryich, and Joe Manatos.

International Day

Thank you to all those who were involved with International Day! It was a huge success! The net income, based on the receipts that we have received this far, for the event was $6,718.35. Again, thank you to all who participated!

Kitchen Remodel

Our new kitchen was fantastic for putting together the food for International Day! The comments for those who utilized it were very positive! Again, may thanks to all those who put in manpower and finances to make this a reality.

As we finished up the kitchen, our incidentals and unforeseen expenses put us into using some of the general construction fund over and above the kitchen line item. Our current deficit is $2,940.27 and we anticipate one last expenditure in putting a bird-proof cage over the top of the fan on the roof to prevent another unfortunate bird incident. If you were intending to donate but did not get the chance, the opportunity is still open.

We would once again, like to thank everyone who made this project possible!

New Flooring

The installation of new flooring in hall entrance, restroom hallway, and mud room made possible through donations from Kathy Parker, Idele Pryich, and Joe Manatos. Thank you for your continued support of our church!

Donating to the Church through Shopping

Calling all those who shop at Smith’s! You can now donate to the church through Smith’s Community Awards program. The only effort on your part will be connecting your Smith’s rewards card to the church. This applies to any Kroger store (for example, Smith’s, Loaf and Jug, Bakers, King Soopers, QFC, Ralphs, and others.) Enclosed with this mailing are detailed directions on how to complete this process. Please take a moment to do so. It is a very effortless way to donate to the church.

Thanksgiving Bake Sale

It is crazy how fast the summer has flown and even crazier to realize that the time to begin baking for the Thanksgiving Bake Sale is around the corner. Our bakers will be organizing and begin baking in September. Please contact Christine Faigl (307-354-8283) or Effie Manley (307-707-7050) and they can give you information on helping with this event. As we all know, it takes the entire community to make this bake sale a success. Last year we were, once again, supported by just a few key bakers. We ask everyone to please, please, find time to lend a hand in some respect.

Update on Father John

Christine Faigl has spoken to Father John. He relayed to her that his surgery went well and he is recuperating under the watchful eye of his brother and family. We wish him a speedy recovery. At this time, as the church schedule suggests, we anticipate Father resuming services as he has presented in the schedule.


September 2016

Sunday, September 4, 2016
No Church
Fr. John recovering from surgery

Sunday, September 11, 2016
Orthros 9:00 am
Divine Liturgy 10:00 am

Wednesday, September 14, 2016
Exaltation of the Holy Cross
Divine Liturgy 10:00 am

Sunday, September 18, 2016
Orthros 9:00 am
Divine Liturgy 10:00 am
Monthly Parish Council Meeting
(providing a quorum is available)

Sunday, September 25, 2016
Orthros 9:00 am
Divine Liturgy 10:00 am


October 2016

Sunday, October 2, 2016
Orthros 9:00 am
Divine Liturgy 10:00 am

Sunday, October 9, 2016
Orthros 9:00 am
Divine Liturgy 10:00 am

Sunday, October 16, 2016
Orthros 9:00 am
Divine Liturgy 10:00 am
Monthly Parish Council Meeting
(providing a quorum is available)

Sunday, October 23, 2016
Orthros 9:00 am
Divine Liturgy 10:00 am

Sunday, October 30, 2016
Orthros 9:00 am
Divine Liturgy 10:00 am

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