Wednesday, September 14, 2011

A New Beginning

The Washington Orthodox Clergy Association
met at the monastery on Tuesday.
A New Year, a New Beginning

Today we celebrate the Church New Year and with it a chance to recommit ourselves to working harder at making changes in our lives that will lead to spiritual growth. The Lord's patience never runs out, so we always have the invitation to renew our commitment to Him.

The New Year, celebrated on the 1st of September (Old Style), is that moment in time when we should take a closer look at how we are using this life God has given us. Are we focused on things spiritual or are we strolling through life as though there were no tomorrow?

If the truth be known, many of you give all kinds of justifications as to why you don't attend services on a regular basis. If it were work related you'd be there, but Church is seen as something that is at the bottom of the to do list. You wouldn't consider going to work only when you felt like it. Nor would you miss family celebrations or social functions with your friends, knowing your loved ones would question your commitment to them.

Relationships are what you put into them. If you don't feed a relationship it dies, just like a vine that is not watered. If you don't place God in the heart of your week and the services in the temple as the central act of that week, how can you expect to be spiritually healthy?

Are you lazy about your spiritual life? Does a Sunday morning pass by without an effort on your part to get yourself to church? Are social engagements more important than the worship of God? If any of this is true for you, the Church's New Year is a good time to turn things around and get yourself back on track. Make this new year one that has as it's focus, personal renewal. Don't sit back waiting for God to do it all, for He's already done it. Do your part! Take that important step and make this the best New Year you've ever had!

Love in Christ,
Abbot Tryphon

Click on the above for a short audio talk by Abbot Tryphon

Wednesday September 14, 2011 / September 1, 2011
14th Week after Pentecost.
 Strict Fast (Bread, Vegetables, Fruits)

Church New Year.
Venerable Symeon Stylites (the Elder) (459) and his mother St. Martha (428).
Virgin-martyrs Tatiana and Natalia (1937).
Martyr Aeithalas of Persia (380).

1 Timothy 2:1-7

 Pray for All Men

  1 Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, 2 for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence. 3 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, 4 who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. 5 For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus, 6 who gave Himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time, 7 for which I was appointed a preacher and an apostle—I am speaking the truth in Christ and not lying—a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and truth.
Luke 4:16-22

Jesus Rejected at Nazareth

16 So He came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up. And as His custom was, He went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and stood up to read. 17 And He was handed the book of the prophet Isaiah. And when He had opened the book, He found the place where it was written:
       18 “ The Spirit of the LORD is upon Me,
       Because He has anointed Me
      To preach the gospel to the poor;
      He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted,
      To proclaim liberty to the captives
      And recovery of sight to the blind,
      To set at liberty those who are oppressed;
       19 To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD.”
 20 Then He closed the book, and gave it back to the attendant and sat down. And the eyes of all who were in the synagogue were fixed on Him. 21 And He began to say to them, “Today this Scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.” 22 So all bore witness to Him, and marveled at the gracious words which proceeded out of His mouth. And they said, “Is this not Joseph’s son?”

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