Blessed are You O Christ our God, You have revealed the fishermen as most wise by sending down upon them the Holy Spirit; through them You have drawn the world into Your net. O Lover of mankind, glory to You!
Today: 8:30am Matins; 9:30 am Divine Liturgy, Prayers of Kneeling; BBQ
(Please note that this coming week is Fast-Free)
Tuesday: 6:00 pm Vesperal Divine Liturgy (for the Nativity of the Fore-Runner)
Thursday: 6:00 pm Vespers and Litia (for Ss. Peter and Paul)
Saturday: 6:00 pm Vespers
Sunday: 8:30 am Matins; 9:30 am Divine Liturgy and Pot-Luck Brunch
The Jewish Feast of Pentecost / The Feast of Weeks (i.e., the closing festival for the 7 weeks of Passover — 7 x 7 =49 + 1 [the day of Passover itself] = 50 days) was called Pentecosté (i.e., 50) in the Greek-speaking Jewish world (Ex. 34:22; Lev. 23:11; Deut. 16:10). It was a harvest feast also connected with the giving of the Law (the Torah) on Mt. Sinai on the 50th day after the original Passover / Exodus events (Ex. 19:11). Pentecost was a great homecoming feast for 1st century Jews from all parts of the world (note St. Paul’s desire to be in Jerusalem for the feast: Acts 2:5-11). Fifty days after the Resurrection of Christ, the extraordinary events we commemorate today in the Upper Room took place.
It is often called Whitsunday due to the white garments worn by those who were baptized during the Pentecost Vigil…i.e., the catechumens who had not been baptized at Pascha. In Italy it has been customary to scatter rose leaves from the ceiling of the churches to recall the miracle of the fiery tongues.
In France it has been customary to blow trumpets during Liturgy to recall the sound of the miracle of the great mighty rushing wind. In England horse racing has been customary on Whitsunday.
In the Christian East the extraordinary service of Kneeling is held — whereat the faithful kneel for the first time since Pascha. In Russia, the faithful carry flowers and green branches in their hands and decorate the church interiors with greenery, branches and the like on the Feast of Pentecost (which commemorates the Holy Trinity as well as the Descent of the Holy Spirit.)
Come, O people, let us worship the Divinity in three persons: the Son in the Father, with the Holy Spirit. For the Father timelessly begot the Son, co-eternal and co-enthroned with Him; and the Holy Spirit was in the Father and is glorified with the Son. We worship one Power, one Essence, one Divinity, and we say: “Holy God, You created all things through Your Son with the cooperation of the Holy Spirit. Holy Mighty, through You we know the Father; through You the Holy Spirit came to dwell in the world. Holy Immortal, Comforting Spirit, You proceed from the Father and rest in the Son. O Holy Trinity, glory to You! (from Vespers for the Feast)