8:45 am Orthros
10:00 am Divine Liturgy
Remember your Creator in the days of your youth. (Ecclesiastes 12:1)
This Month and the first week of Dekapentavgousto at Saint Catherine
Sunday, July 9 ~ 5th Sunday of Matthew
8:45 am Orthros
10:00 am Divine Liturgy
• We are gathering names of Orthodox Veterans in support of our new Memorial for Orthodox Veterans at the Diakonia Retreat Center. There will be special commemorations annually for Veterans Day and Memorial Day. Please stop by the table at the Coffee Hour.
Sunday, July 16 ~ Sunday of the Holy Fathers
8:45 am Orthros
10:00 am Divine Liturgy
Sunday, July 23 ~ 7th Sunday of Matthew
8:45 am Orthros
10:00 am Divine Liturgy
Thursday, July 27
7:00 pm Parish Council Meeting
Sunday, July 30 ~ 8th Sunday of Matthew
8:45 am Orthros
10:00 am Divine Liturgy
Tuesday, August 1
6:30 pm Small Paraklesis
Wednesday, August 2
6:30 pm Great Paraklesis
Thursday, August 3
6:30 pm Small Paraklesis
Friday, August 4
6:30 pm Great Paraklesis
Saturday, August 5
6:30 pm Transfiguration (Metamorphosis) Great Vespers
Sunday, August 6 ~ Transfiguration of our Lord
9:00 am Orthros
10:00 am Divine Liturgy
Many of our Divine Liturgies are available at www.youtube.com.
Search for “Saint Catherine Greek Orthodox Church”. Subscribe to our YouTube channel.
Family Life Blog
Our Metropolis of Atlanta Family Life Blog has wonderful inspiring material for families and each of us as individuals. Take a look at the flyer on our Saint Catherine home page. Read and share the Family Life blog which is at: http://www.familylifeministry.atlanta.goarch.org/
Stewardship at Saint Catherine:
We invite you to join the growing number of Saint Catherine stewards in 2017. Stewardship is partnership with God and the happiest people on earth are those who have discovered the joy of giving! Saint Catherine stewards - you are the life blood of our Church. We thank you for your dedication.
Orthodox Christian Programs
Did you know that we have Orthodox Christian programs available 24 hours a day, seven days of the week? There is the weekly Come Receive the Light program and three channels of content to listen to in addition to special presentations in the form of podcasts, articles and videos. Take a break from your routine to read / listen / watch the Orthodox content from the Orthodox Christian Network (OCN). All are all available at: http://myocn.net/
Fifth Orthros Gospel
The Reading is from Luke 24:13-35
At that time, two of them were going to a village named Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem, and talking with each other about all these things that had happened. While they were talking and discussing together, Jesus himself drew near and went with them. But their eyes were kept from recognizing him. And he said to them, "What is this conversation which you are holding with each other as you walk?" And they stood still looking sad. Then one of them, named Cleopas, answered him, "Are you the only visitor to Jerusalem who does not know the things that have happened there in these days?" And he said to them, "What things?" And they said to him, "Concerning Jesus of Nazareth, who was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people, and how our chief priests and rulers delivered him up to be condemned to death, and crucified him. But we had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel. Yes, and besides all this, it is now the third day since this happened. Moreover, some women of our company amazed us. They were at the tomb early in the morning and did not find his body; and they came back saying that they had even seen a vision of angels, who said that he was alive. Some of those who were with us went to the tomb, and found it just as the women had said; but him they did not see." And he said to them, "O foolish men, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! Was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer these things and enter into his glory?" And beginning with Moses and all the prophets, he interpreted to them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself.
So they drew near to the village to which they were going. He appeared to be going further, but they constrained him, saying, "Stay with us, for it is toward evening and the day is now far spent." So he went in to stay with them. When he was at table with them, he took the bread and blessed, and broke it, and gave it to them. And their eyes were opened and they recognized him; and he vanished out of their sight. They said to each other, "Did not our hearts burn within us while he talked to us on the road, while he opened to us the scriptures?" And they rose that same hour and returned to Jerusalem; and they found the eleven gathered together and those who were with them, who said, "The Lord has risen indeed, and has appeared to Simon!" Then they told what had happened on the road, and how he was known to them in the breaking of the bread.
Prokeimenon. Fourth Tone. Psalm 103.24,1.
O Lord, how manifold are your works. You have made all things in wisdom.
Verse: Bless the Lord, O my soul.
The reading is from St. Paul's Letter to the Romans 10:1-10.
BRETHREN, my heart's desire and prayer to God for them is that they may be saved. I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but it is not enlightened. For, being ignorant of the righteousness that comes from God, and seeking to establish their own, they did not submit to God's righteousness. For Christ is the end of the law, that every one who has faith may be justified. Moses writes that the man who practices the righteousness which is based on the law shall live by it. But the righteousness based on faith says, Do not say in your heart, "Who will ascend into heaven?" (that is, to bring Christ down) or "Who will descend into the abyss?" (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead). But what does it say? The word is near you, on your lips and in your heart (that is, the word of faith which we preach); because, if you confess with your lips that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For man believes with his heart and so is justified, and he confesses with his lips and so is saved.
5th Sunday of Matthew
The Reading is from Matthew 8:28-34; 9:1
At that time, when Jesus came to the country of the Gergesenes, two demoniacs met him, coming out of the tombs, so fierce that no one would pass that way. And behold, they cried out, "What have you to do with us, O Son of God? Have you come here to torment us before the time?" Now a herd of many swine was feeding at some distance from them. And the demons begged him, "If you cast us out, send us away into the herd of swine." And he said to them, "Go." So they came out and went into the swine; and behold, the whole herd rushed down the steep bank into the sea, and perished in the waters. The herdsmen fled, and going into the city they told everything, and what had happened to the demoniacs. And behold, all the city came out to meet Jesus; and when they saw him, they begged him to leave their neighborhood. And getting into a boat he crossed over and came to his own city.
Let us praise in hymns the all-lauded bride of Christ,* Catherine, the guardian of Sinai,* who is our help and our support;* for by the power of the Spirit she silenced brilliantly* the nobility of liars.* And now that she has been crowned as a Martyr,* she seeks for all Great Mercy.
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This Saint, who was a contemporary of the Apostles, had Antioch as his homeland, where he was guided to the Faith of Christ by Peter, the Chief of the Apostles. Later, he came to Sicily, where he brought many to the Faith, and was finally put to death by the pagans.
Saint Anthony, who was born in the province of Chernigov, was tonsured in the Monastery of Esphigmenou on the Holy Mountain, Athos, from whence he was sent by his abbot to Kiev to plant the monastic life in 1013, two years before the death of Saint Vladimir, Great Prince of Kiev. Dwelling at first as a hermit, the Saint gradually drew to himself others wishing to emulate his way of life. When the number of the brethren grew, a wooden church in honour of the Dormition of the Theotokos was built, thus laying the foundation of what was to become the renowned Kiev Caves Lavra. Refusing the abbotship, Saint Anthony entrusted this to his disciples, first to the blessed Barlaam, then to Saint Theodosius (See May 3), and his whole life struggled as a cave-dwelling hermit. He reposed in peace in 1073 at the age of ninety.
The Forty-five Martyrs of Nikopolis contested during the reign of Licinius, in the year 315. After many torments, they were burnt alive.
In 451, during the reign of the Sovereigns Marcian and Pulcheria, the Fourth Ecumenical Council was convoked in Chalcedon against Eutyches and those of like mind with him. After much debate, the Fathers who were the defenders of Orthodoxy, being 630 in number, agreed among themselves and with those who were of contrary mind, to write their respective definitions of faith in separate books, and to ask God to confirm the truth in this matter. When they had prepared these texts, they placed the two tomes in the case that held Saint Euphemia's relics, sealed it, and departed. After three days of night-long supplications, they opened the reliquary in the presence of the Emperor, and found the tome of the heretics under the feet of the Martyr, and that of the Orthodox in her right hand. (For her life, see Sept. 16.)
Saint Olga, renowned for her wisdom and sobriety, in her youth became the wife of Igor, Great Prince of Kiev, who ruled during the tenth century. After her husband's death, she herself ruled capably, and was finally moved to accept the Faith of Christ. She traveled to Constantinople to receive Holy Baptism. The Emperor, seeing her outward beauty and inward greatness, asked her to marry him. She said she could not do this before she was baptized; she furthermore asked him to be her Godfather at the font, which he agreed to do. After she was baptized (receiving the name of Helen), the Emperor repeated his proposal of marriage. She answered that now he was her father, through holy Baptism, and that not even among the heathen was it heard of a man marrying his daughter. Gracefully accepting to be outwitted by her, he sent her back to her land with priests and sacred texts and holy icons. Although her son Svyatoslav remained a pagan, she planted the seed of faith in her grandson Vladimir (see July 15). She reposed in peace in 969.
These Martyrs contested in Ancyra in 106, during the reign of the Emperor Trajan. Saint Proclus was seized as a Christian and, confessing his faith, was burned on his sides and belly, was hung upon a beam with heavy stones tied to his feet, and finally was taken away to be shot with arrows. As he was being led forth, his nephew Hilary encountered him and greeted him, and was himself seized. After his uncle had been slain with arrows, Hilary, because he would not deny Christ, was tormented, then beheaded.
It is believed that the Synaxis of the Archangel Gabriel was transferred to this day from March 26 so that it could be celebrated more festively than in the period of the Great Fast; and, in fact, all the miracles of the Archangel are celebrated on this feast day, which has been listed here in the church books since the ninth century.
According to some, the Saint Stephen celebrated today was a nephew of Saint John of Damascus, different from the one celebrated on October 28, who later also became a Bishop.
Saint Golindoux was a Persian, living in the reign of Chosroes II, King of Persia (590-628), and of Maurice, Emperor of New Rome (582-602). Moved by a divine revelation to become a Christian, she was betrayed to Chosroes by her husband and was cast into a dungeon called Oblivion for eighteen years, withstanding all attempts to make her deny Christ, and preserved by the grace of God. Set at liberty through the visitation of an Angel, she went to Jerusalem, and then to Constantinople, where she fell asleep in peace. She was called Mary in holy Baptism.
Saint Aquila, who was from Pontus of Asia Minor, was a Jew by race and a tent-maker by trade. In the year 52 he and his wife Priscilla were in Corinth when Saint Paul first came there. They gave him hospitality, and the Apostle remained with them for many days, himself working at the same trade as they (Acts 18:2-3). And having believed in Christ through Paul, they followed him from that time on, working together with him and suffering perils with him for the sake of the preaching of the Gospel, as he himself testifies concerning them in his Epistle to the Romans, saying: "Greet Priscilla and Aquila, my helpers in Christ Jesus: who have for my life laid down their own necks: unto whom not only I give thanks, but also all the churches of the nations" (Rom. 16:3-4). When and where they reposed is unknown.
Saint Joseph was the brother of Saint Theodore the Studite (see Nov. 11). He also is called Studite, especially when he is mentioned together with his brother. According to Codinus, both of them composed the canons of the Triodion during the reign of Leo the Armenian, while in the Church of Saint Romanus (see Nov. 18); he is not to be confused with Saint Joseph the Hymnographer (Apr. 3). When Saint Joseph became Archbishop of Thessalonica, he was exiled thrice because of his godly zeal for the holy icons, suffering many hardships, imprisonments in dark dungeons, hunger, thirst, and every tribulation, in the midst of which he departed unto eternal life in 833.
Saint Julitta was from the city of Iconium. Fearing the persecution of Diocletian, she took her son Cyricus, who was three years old, and departed for Seleucia; but finding the same evil there, she went over to Tarsus in Cilicia, where the ruler arrested her. He took her son from her and tried with flatteries to draw the youth to himself. But the little one, in his childish voice, called on the Name of Christ and kicked the ruler in the belly so hard, that the tyrant became enraged and cast him down the steps of the tribunal. In this manner, the child's head was crushed, and he gave up the spirit. As for his blessed mother, she first endured many torments, and finally was beheaded in the year 296.
Grandson of Saint Olga, Saint Vladimir ascended the throne of Kiev in 980. Though a zealous idolater, he was illumined by the grace of God, accepted the Christian Faith, and completely changed his ways. He was baptized in Cherson in 988, receiving the name Basil; he came forth from the font not only healed of a blindness lately afflicting him, but also from being passionate and warlike, he became meek, peaceable, and exceedingly godly. Whereas his grandmother had refused marriage with the Emperor in Constantinople (see July 11), he married Anna, sister of the Emperors Basil and Constantine, and was accompanied home by priests from Constantinople. Diligently seeking to spread Christianity throughout his realm like a new Constantine, he destroyed the idols (having the chief diety Perun scourged and then cast into the Dnieper River), and summoned all his subjects to Holy Baptism. He reposed in peace in 1015.
On the Sunday that falls from the 13th to the 19th of the present month, we chant the Service to the Holy and God-bearing Fathers who came together in the Seven Ecumenical Councils, that is: the First Council, of the 318 Fathers who assembled in Nicaea in 325 to condemn Arius, who denied that the Son of God is consubstantial with the Father; the Fathers of the First Council also ordained that the whole Church should celebrate Pascha according to the same reckoning; the Second Council, of the 150 Fathers who assembled in Constantinople in 381 to condemn Macedonius, Patriarch of Constantinople, who denied the Divinity of the Holy Spirit; the Third Council, of the 200 Fathers who assembled in Ephesus in 431, to condemn Nestorius, Patriarch of Constantinople, who called Christ a mere man and not God incarnate; the Fourth Council, of the 630 who assembled in Chalcedon in 451, to condemn Eutyches, who taught that there was only one nature, the divine, in Christ after the Incarnation, and Dioscorus, Patriarch of Alexandria, who illegally received Eutyches back into communion and deposed Saint Flavian, Patriarch of Constantinople, who had excommunicated Eutyches; the Fifth Council in 553, of the 165 who assembled in Constantinople for the second time to condemn Origen and Theodore of Mopsuestia, the teacher of Nestorius; the Sixth Council in 680, of the 170 who assembled in Constantinople for the third time, to condemn the Monothelite heresy, which taught that there is in Christ but one will, the divine; and the Seventh Council in 787, of the 350 who assembled in Nicaea for the second time to condemn Iconoclasm.
This Saint was from Sebastia of Cappadocia and , according to the Synaxaristes, became Bishop of Pidachthoa. He and ten of his disciples were tortured and beheaded by the Governor of Philomarchus in the times of Diocletian. There is a second Martyr Athenogenes commemorated today, mentioned by Saint Basil in Chapter 29 of his treatise "On the Holy Spirit"; it is said that as this Athenogenes approached the fire, wherein he was to die a martyric death, he chanted the hymn O Joyous Light in praise of the Holy Trinity (see also Mar. 11).
Message from Metropolitan Alexios
My Beloved Ones,
Today I wish to discuss a subject the Holy Fathers of our Church understand to draw on the connection between the mind, the heart, and our hands. The Fathers take the nous to mean the way we interact with and experience God. When a thought—pure or otherwise, enters our minds, we have a choice to accept or reject it. In the case of improper thoughts, these might be more difficult to dismiss, because they are so often related to those passions with which we are afflicted (examples might include love of food or drink, lust or gossip, among many other sins).
Having entered our mind, the thought then has the opportunity to take root in our consciousness. Without the benefit of consistent prayer, self-examination, and confession, as well as the Eucharist, the Fathers then speak of the rooted thought passing from the mind onto our spiritual heart. Once we allow our worldly desires to implant itself in our hearts, it only follows that these passions will seek their outlet from within ourselves, to the outside world.
Christ, as our loving and merciful Incarnate Lord and Savior, understands our weaknesses. We see a direct demonstration of this in this Sunday’s Gospel. Jesus is passing through the region of Gadarenes, when He encounters two men possessed by demons. Matthew tells us that these men approach Jesus from the tombs, but we know from Christ’s encounters with other demoniacs that such unfortunate persons were often expelled from their communities, and even chained. This was done for the safety of the community, but looking deeper we can see also a lack of compassion. These demoniacs may be under the sway of the Evil One’s influence, but who among men is not tempted, or spiritually untouched by weaknesses, as we have shown?
Unlike the self-preservation shown by the neighbors, Christ shows no fear of the demoniacs. Christ approaches them, expelling the demons into the herd of swine. The rest of the Gospel is well known: how the swine perished falling from the cliffs; but the unexpected ending is that instead of reacting with wonder or amazement at our Lord’s generosity and fearlessness, the townspeople beg Christ to depart. Surely this miracle was probably a frightening thing to witness, or overhear, but we should ask: are we like the townspeople, who cast off their troubled fellow men, and fearfully beg the Word of God to depart; or will we instead recognize the miraculous opportunity we have to be made spiritually whole ourselves?
Has our love of material things and the pleasures of this life so overwhelmed our hearts that we are unable to recognize Christ when He comes; are we unable to have the noetic experience for which we human beings were created? Only through fasting, prayer, and sincere repentance can we become less like the crowd of townspeople, and more like the unheard, but grateful pair.
Metropolitan of Atlanta
From the Chancellor's Deskk
Every day we rub shoulders with people who do not accept Jesus Christ as their Lord, God, and Savior. This week, may we ask God to fill us with the longing, “I wish you knew my Savior, Jesus Christ.” Then, we will become instruments in God’s hand . . . to introduce Christ to those who do not know Him. If your Christianity is worth having, it’s worth sharing.
only, but also in power and in the Holy Spirit and with full conviction; just as you know what kind of persons we proved to be among you for your sake.” (1 Thess. 1:2-5)
+Fr. George Tsahakis
The Strategic Plan
The Inaugural “Mini” Faith Forums in Raleigh during Clergy-Laity were very successful! Attendees were able to learn about how to implement the tools put together by the various goal teams. The topics presented were:
Most of the above goals have content posted on the portal. Parishioners are invited to use the new content found at www.atlstrategicplan.org/portal to enhance their efforts working for the Church and its many ministries. The completed Goals include: 1.1 Parish Strategic Planning (including the addition of customizable templates), 1.3 Risk Management, 3.3 Communications Director, 5.1 Early Parenting, 5.2 Newly Married Couple Mentoring, 5.4 Seniors Program, 8.1 Spiritual Growth Resources, 10.1 Metropolis Website and 10.3 Best Practices Metropolis Resource Center Portal. If you have questions, contact your Parish Champion or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Family Life Ministry
The Metropolis of Atlanta’s Family Life Ministry (www.familylifeministry.atlanta.goarch.org) strengthens individuals, families and church families through adaptable programs, blogs and educational materials as a means of fostering connection within our homes and our parishes.
School’s out for summer! Now what do we do…how do we balance kids, work, home and activities? Join us today as we discuss how to make summers with your kids count. We’ve got ideas on how to take advantage of the opportunity summer gives to spend more quality time with your kids by creating a summer bucket list, summer goals, and a routine schedule to keep your Orthodox Christian family centered and structured during the summer months.
Journey of Marriage (Pre-Marital Seminar)
All couples marrying in the Metropolis must attend a Metropolis-sponsored Journey of Marriage seminar prior to their wedding. The couple will present their certificate of completion to their parish priest after the seminar.
To see the full list of seminars through 2017, and to register, please visit: http://www.familylifeministry.atlanta.goarch.org/upcoming-events-2/
Shop with Amazon, donate to the DRC
Amazon Smile is a program that allows for 0.5% of your eligible Amazon purchase to be donated to the Diakonia Retreat Center (No Added Cost To You). To find our Amazon Smile page, visit https://smile.amazon.com/ch/91-2187047.
The Panagia Chapel is now being built at our Diakonia Retreat Center. Upon completion it will be the heart and life for all who attend retreats there, a unique place of prayer for all in our Metropolis now and for generations to come.