7th SUNDAY OF PASCHA — Tone 6. Holy Fathers of the First Ecumenical Council. Afterfeast of Ascension.
Download the Children’s Word PDF
Tone 6 Troparion (Resurrection)
The Angelic Powers were at Your tomb;
the guards became as dead men.
Mary stood by Your grave,
seeking Your most pure body.
You captured hell, not being tempted by it.
You came to the Virgin, granting life.
O Lord, Who rose from the dead,//
glory to You.
Tone 4 Troparion (Ascension)
You ascended in glory, O Christ our God,
granting joy to Your Disciples by the promise of the Holy Spirit.
Through the blessing, they were assured
that You are the Son of God,//
the Redeemer of the world!
Tone 8 Troparion (Fathers)
You are most glorious, O Christ our God!
You have established the Holy Fathers as lights on the earth.
Through them You have guided us to the true Faith.//
O greatly compassionate One, glory to You!
Tone 8 Kontakion (Fathers)
The Apostles’ preaching and the Fathers’ doctrines have established one Faith for the Church.
Adorned with the robe of truth, woven from heavenly theology,//
It defines and glorifies the great mystery of piety.
Tone 6 Kontakion
When You had fulfilled the dispensation for our sake,
and united earth to heaven:
You ascended in glory, O Christ our God,
not being parted from those who love You,
but remaining with them and crying://
“I am with you, and there is no one against you!”
Tone 4 Prokeimenon (Song of the Three Holy Children)
Blessed are You, O Lord God of our fathers, / and praised and glorified is Your Name forever! (Song of the Three Holy Children, v. 3)
V. For You are just in all that You have done for us! (v. 4)
Acts 20:16-18, 28-36 (Epistle)
For Paul had decided to sail past Ephesus, so that he would not have to spend time in Asia; for he was hurrying to be at Jerusalem, if possible, on the Day of Pentecost.
From Miletus he sent to Ephesus and called for the elders of the church. And when they had come to him, he said to them: “You know, from the first day that I came to Asia, in what manner I always lived among you.
Therefore take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood. For I know this, that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock. Also from among yourselves men will rise up, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after themselves. Therefore watch, and remember that for three years I did not cease to warn everyone night and day with tears.
So now, brethren, I commend you to God and to the word of His grace, which is able to build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified. I have coveted no one’s silver or gold or apparel. Yes, you yourselves know that these hands have provided for my necessities, and for those who were with me. I have shown you in every way, by laboring like this, that you must support the weak. And remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’”
And when he had said these things, he knelt down and prayed with them all.
Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia!
V. The Lord, the God of gods, speaks and summons the earth from the rising of the sun to its setting. (Ps. 49:1)
V. Gather to Me My venerable ones, who made a covenant with Me by sacrifice! (Ps. 49:6)
Prayer Before the Gospel
Illumine our hearts, O Master and Lover of mankind, with the pure light of Your divine knowledge, and open the eyes of our mind to the understanding of Your Gospel teachings. Implant also in us the fear of Your blessed commandments, that trampling down all carnal desires, we may enter upon a spiritual manner of living, both thinking and doing such things as are well-pleasing to You. For You are the illumination of our souls and bodies, O Christ our God, and unto You do we send up glory, together with Your Father, Who is without beginning, and Your all-holy, good, and life-giving Spirit, now and ever and unto ages of ages. Amen.
John 17:1-13 (Gospel)
Jesus spoke these words, lifted up His eyes to heaven, and said:
“Father, the hour has come. Glorify Your Son, that Your Son also may glorify You, as You have given Him authority over all flesh, that He should give eternal life to as many as You have given Him. And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent. I have glorified You on the earth. I have finished the work which You have given Me to do. And now, O Father, glorify Me together with Yourself, with the glory which I had with You before the world was.
I have manifested Your name to the men whom You have given Me out of the world. They were Yours, You gave them to Me, and they have kept Your word. Now they have known that all things which You have given Me are from You. For I have given to them the words which You have given Me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came forth from You; and they have believed that You sent Me. I pray for them. I do not pray for the world but for those whom You have given Me, for they are Yours. And all Mine are Yours, and Yours are Mine, and I am glorified in them. Now I am no longer in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to You. Holy Father, keep through Your name those whom You have given Me, that they may be one as We are. While I was with them in the world, I kept them in Your name. Those whom You gave Me I have kept; and none of them is lost except the son of perdition, that the Scripture might be fulfilled.
But now I come to You, and these things I speak in the world, that they may have My joy fulfilled in themselves.
Our Schedule this Week and the Rest of the Month
- Wednesday, June 16 — Vespers 6 p.m.
- Friday, June 18 — Vespers 6 p.m.
- Saturday, June 19 — Great Vespers 6 p.m.
- Sunday, June 20 — Pentecost Matins, Liturgy, and Vespers with Kneeling Prayers, 8:30 a.m.; followed by Father’s Day/Pentecost lunch (barbecue!)
- Monday, June 21 — Youth Zoom meeting 7 p.m.
- Wednesday, June 23 — Akathist to the Mother of God (Healer of Cancer) 6 p.m.
- Friday, June 25 — Vespers; 6 p.m.
- Saturday, June 26 — Great Vespers 6 p.m.
- Sunday, June 27 — All Saints Matins and Liturgy 8:30 a.m.
- Monday, June 28 — Sts. Peter and Paul Fast (one day), Vigil for Feast of Sts. Peter and Paul 6 p.m.
- Tuesday, June 29 — Feast of Sts. Peter and Paul Hours and Liturgy 9:10 a.m.
- Wednesday, June 30 — Vespers, 6 p.m.
- Thursday, July 1 — St. John Maximovitch Great Vespers 6 p.m.
- Friday, July 2 — Feast of St. John Maximovitch Hours and Liturgy 9:10 a.m. and Vespers 6 p.m.
See the online calendar for further details.
Friday, July 9 — Our parish will host a Red Cross Blood Drive from noon to 5 p.m. downstairs in the Hall. Sign up spaces are limited, by appointment. Book online to donate blood! Search by date, and you will find our parish listed. This is open to anyone in the parish and the community.
After Great Vespers, Saturday evenings, or during the week by appointment. Please email or call Fr. John to make arrangements for this.
“Works of the People”: prosphora baking team, door greeters, church cleaning, and more, contact Jennifer McDonald.
Church School: This is offered to children from 3yrs old up through high school. At this time however due to COVID, church school has been temporarily halted. Contact Barbara Eng.
Charitable Outreach: From time to time throughout the year we will have special collections. For example during the Nativity fast, we took a collection for Portland Rescue Mission, and during Great Lent we took a collection for the Gobezie Goshu Home in Ethiopia, and the Portland Rescue Mission. Thanks to your generosity, we raised over $10,000 for the Gobezie Goshu Home, and almost $3,000 for the Portland Rescue Mission. These donations were matched (up to $5,000 each) by the St. Martin’s Fund.
St. Martin’s Good Works Fund, a fund started by a large bequest to offer financial help for targeted needs internationally, nationally, and locally. It is overseen by the clergy, and parish council members, and a small number of the laity of the parish. Contact Fr. John or Jan Bear.
St. Elizabeth Pastoral Care Team: Helps with arrangements for meals, rides to church, a monthly prayer list, an intercessory prayer group, provides hand knitted prayer shawls, sends greeting and condolence cards, and provides periodic “bulletin board” tips, thoughts, and general health related advice & news. Contact Mat. Karen Hadley.
When Good Deeds Become Prideful
If the performance of good deeds are done in order to attain personal benefit for oneself, or to receive the praise of others, it falls under the sin of avarice, vanity, and greed. Anyone who performs good deeds for such purposes is guilty of sinful pride, and vainglory. The performance of any good deed that is based on an ungodly foundation, is essentially a temptation inspired by the devil. Such good deeds count as nothing before God. To be truly virtuous one’s deeds must be done without showiness or fanfare. Good deeds must come from the heart, and be based on love of God, and love of neighbor.
He Who Trusts the Will of God Has No Worries
With all the troubles that are now befalling our world, many people find themselves worrying about the future. The pandemic, as well as the political instability that has taken the West by storm, together with job stability, has given many people cause for concern. Yet for the Christian, we know that worrying will change nothing. For a Christian, our faith in Divine Providence leads us to know that the only thing I must be concerned about, is doing the will of God.
How do we know we’re living according to the will of God? The Elder Thaddeus of Vitovnica tells us, “He who lives according to God’s will has no worries. When he needs something, he simply prays for it. If he does not receive that which he asked for, he is joyful as though he had received it. A soul that has given itself over to God has no fear of anything, not even robbers, sickness, or death. Whatever happens, such a soul always cries, ‘It was the will of God’.”
Protopresbyter Antonios Christou
As we know, the feast of the Ascension seals the first coming of Christ to the world, in the flesh. It thus completes the plan of God’s divine dispensation in the incarnation of his Son and Word as a human being. The nativity, the teaching, the miracles, the passion, the crucifixion and burial and the resurrection of Christ \re divine occurrences which are related to Christ’s presence in the world. With the Ascension, however, the healing of the human race through all these works and deeds is sealed, but also generalized to the whole of the human race, because the Lord didn’t merely ascend into the heavens in glory but, as we confess in article 6 of the Creed: ‘And he ascended into heaven and sits at the right hand of the father’. In other words, deified human nature is now present at the throne of God, together with the divine. Therefore every being which shares human nature can also be deified by grace and so can be saved. Before the Ascension this was impossible. This makes us realize the blessing, the significance and the gravity of this feast.
With the Ascension, there is no abandonment of us on the part of Christ, nor any absence of his from the world, since he himself assured his disciples: ‘Behold, I am with you always until the end of the age. Amen’ (Matth. 28, 20). It follows that when we pray to the Lord, when we partake of the body and blood of Christ, when we cleanse our heart and enclose Christ therein, then we become Christ-bearers and God-bearers. What the Bridegroom of the Church and of the existence of every believer wants is for us to love him, to make him our priority, to keep his commandments and to seek him, directly or indirectly in his visible image, that is every other person.
Apart from the objective salvation of the human race and the opportunity for each of us to achieve this by growing from the image of God into his likeness, the feast of the Ascension also opens up two other perspectives.
a) The first is also the last, in the sense that it belongs to the end times. It’s the expectation of his glorious second coming concerning which we know neither the hour or the moment, though we do know that it’ll happen, as we confess in the Creed: ‘And he shall come again with glory to judge the living and the dead; and of his kingdom there shall be no end’. So from this we know that everything we do, say and think will have its recompense, for good or bad, at the second coming, since the Lord will be there as Judge. Moreover, since we know neither the time nor the moment of the Second Coming, nor of our own biological death, we have to be aware of the vigilance and sobriety required for our departure from this earthly life. This shouldn’t engender pathological fear and anxiety in us, but neither should we descend into sloth and a false sense of security.
The second prospect is the opening of the way for the coming of the Comforter*, the Holy Spirit, the third person of the Holy Trinity, who is necessary if we’re to know anything at all about God and whose presence is essential on every occasion of the sacramental life and liturgical services of our Church.
*A difficult word. Originally it meant ‘someone who was summoned’ which makes theological sense in that we invoke the Holy Spirit at the sacraments. However, the word in Greek is also related to the verb ‘to console’ and when the liturgical texts were first translated, into Slavonic, the word used was Uteshitel’ (=‘Comforter’), so it is probably safe to assume that this was the meaning the word carried in the Church.
St. Nektarios of Pentapolis
The main task for us people is prayer. We were made to praise God. That’s the task to which we’re best suited. It’s the only thing that explains our spiritual hypostasis (substance). It’s the only thing that justifies our preeminent role in creation. We were made to worship God and to share in his goodness and blessedness.
St. Porfyyrios Kavsokalyvitis
The important thing is for us to be with Christ. For our soul to wake up and love Christ, to become holy. To surrender to burning divine love. Then he’ll love us, too. Then our joy will never be taken from us. This is what Christ wants most: to fill us with joy, because he’s the source of joy.
St. Symeon the New Theologian
Let’s not be flexible as regards our conscience. Let’s pass strict judgment on ourselves and then we’ll see that we ourselves are the cause of our estrangement from God. Let’s repent, weep over our wretched condition and strive now to clothe ourselves in the ‘heavenly image’.