Announcements for October 9-15, 2011

Holy Apostle James, Son of Alphaeus (from The Church of Vladimir, Russia, 12th century)

Today: 8:30 am Matins; 9:30 am Divine Liturgy & Brunch

Tuesday: 6:00 pm Vespers

Thursday: 6:00 pm Vespers & Choir

Saturday: 6:00 pm Vespers

Sunday: 8:30 am Matins; 9:30 am Divine Liturgy, Brunch & Pastoral Visitation Committee Meeting

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Looking Ahead:

Have fun while building relationships of support with formerly homeless families and children! On Thursday, October 27, a Halloween party for formerly homeless families is happening at St. Andrew Presbyterian Church at 6:30 PM.  The folks at St. Andrew’s have invited the folks at St. Nicholas’ to help out with this event.  We need a few parishioners to help out with some simple booths, snacks, and a piñata at the end.

People who have experienced homelessness often lack community, support, and a sense of belonging.  Even something as simple as a Halloween party can be a way of helping people feel that they have friends in their corner.  This is a great way our parish can get involved in making a difference for homeless families.

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Friday & Saturday, November 18 & 19 — Journey To Light Icon and Chant Festival here at St. Nicholas and at St. Clare.

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In the Orthodox Church, it’s the norm for all communicants to live a life that is consistent with and appropriate to receiving the Holy Mysteries.  This means that we not only maintain an ongoing life  that reflects the Gospel, the Epistles, the canons and dogmas of the Christian Faith, but also that we prepare for Holy Communion.  There are a number of ways involved in this.  Regular prayer, fasting, abstinence, confession, scriptural study, almsgiving, works of mercy, parish stewardship and attendance at divine services.  Additionally, it is expected that regular communicants prepare for the Sunday (or festal) Divine Liturgy by attending Vespers on the eve before we approach the chalice.  This is, of course, not always possible every Sunday or feast day.  But it is the norm.  The standard.  The canon.  The rule, rather than the exception.  Eastern Orthodoxy is not a “Sunday only” faith.  Each day, each week, each season is characterized by certain cycles of protocols.  One of those cycles — the weekly Resurrectional cycle — begins at sundown on Saturday with Vespers.  Please give serious consideration to making regular participation at Vespers (ideally no less than twice a month) part of your spiritual discipline and preparation for Holy Communion.  This may mean (re)prioritizing calendars.  But know that this is not only a gift to God.  It is also a blessing received from Him.