Sunday of the Holy Fathers of Fourth Ecumenical Council
Apostle Aquila of the Seventy; Joseph the Confessor, archbishop of Thessalonica; Peter, bishop of Crete; Venerable Onesimos of Magnesia and Nicodemus of the Holy Mountain
July 14, 2019
Thou, O Christ, art our God of exceeding praise Who didst establish our Holy Fathers as luminous stars upon earth, and through them didst guide us unto the true Faith, O most merciful One, glory to Thee.
+Apolytikion of the Holy Fathers
From the Synaxarion (What is that?)
On July 14 in the Holy Orthodox Church, we commemorate the Apostle Aquila of the Seventy; Joseph the Confessor, archbishop of Thessalonica; Peter, bishop of Crete; Venerable Onesimos of Magnesia and Nicodemus of the Holy Mountain.
On this Sunday, we commemorate the 630 holy and God-bearing Fathers of the Fourth Ecumenical Council, which convened in Chalcedon in 451 against the Monophysites.
Shunning opposite errors like the sea monsters Scylla and Charybdis,
The Fathers steer the Church on a straight course to safety.
The Holy Fathers were, once again, concerned with the nature of Jesus Christ. The false teaching arose that Christ’s human nature (considered by heretics as less perfect) dissolved itself in His divine nature (considered by heretics as more perfect): like a cube of sugar in a parcel of water. Thus, in that scenario, Christ had only one nature, the Divine. These false preachers were called Monophysites (“mono”, meaning “one” and “physis”, meaning “nature”), and they were led by Eutyches and Dioscorus. Monophysitism overemphasized the divine nature of Christ, at the expense of the human. The Fourth Ecumenical Council condemned Monophysitism and proclaimed that Christ has two complete natures: the divine and the human, as defined by previous Councils. These two natures function as equally perfect, without confusion, and are neither divided nor separate. The Fathers declared that at no time did they undergo any change.
By the intercessions of Thy Saints, O Christ God, have mercy upon us. Amen.
The Reading from the Epistle of St. Paul to the St. Titus. (3:8-15)
Titus, my son, the saying is sure. I desire you to insist on these things, so that those who have believed in God may be careful to apply themselves to good deeds; these are excellent and profitable to men. But avoid stupid controversies, genealogies, dissensions, and quarrels over the law, for they are unprofitable and futile. As for a man who is factious, after admonishing him once or twice, have nothing more to do with him, knowing that such a person is perverted and sinful; he is self-condemned. When I send Artemas or Tychicus to you, do your best to come to me at Nicopolis, for I have decided to spend the winter there. Do your best to speed Zenas the lawyer and Apollos on their way; see that they lack nothing. And let our people learn to apply themselves to good deeds, so as to help cases of urgent need, and not to be unfruitful. All who are with me send greetings to you. Greet those who love us in the faith. Grace be with you all. Amen.
The Reading from the Holy Gospel according to St. Matthew. (5:14-19)
The Lord said to His Disciples: “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hid. Nor do men light a lamp and put it under a bushel, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father Who is in heaven. Think not that I have come to abolish the law and the prophets; I have come not to abolish them, but to fulfill them. For truly, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the law until all is accomplished. Whoever then relaxes one of the least of these commandments, and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but he who does them and teaches them shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.”
Upcoming Work Concerning The Fourth Ecumenical Council and The Relationship Between The Orthodox Church and The “Monophysites”
The Holy Monastery of Grigoriou on Mt. Athos is working on publishing a complete anthology concerning the Fourth Ecumenical Council of Chalcedon, re-iterating the unchanged Orthodox Christian position, while including the various exchanged writings and dialogues between the Orthodox and “Monophysites” – also referred to as the “Non-Chalcedonians” (Armenians, Coptic, Eritrean, Ethiopian, Malankara, and Syriac Jacobites).
Fr. Lukas is the leading theologian of the monastery, which had been blessed for decades with the works of their previous Geronda (“Elder”) and Abbot, Fr. George Kapsanis – a spiritual man whose works were admired and widely accepted throughout Athos as the “commonly held view of Mt. Athos”. Fr. Lukas spent years at the feet of this wise elder and is now continuing his work. We were blessed to hear more on the upcoming publication concerning the matter above straight from Fr. Lukas.
There is much confusion in our times concerning the Orthodox Christian relationship with the Non-Chalcedonians – clarity and faithfulness to the holy fathers of the Orthodox faith is needed now more than ever.
Fr. Lukas is a Doctor, who became a Hieromonk (i.e. monk that is also a priest) many years ago and tends to the physical health of the monks and pilgrims as necessary. This is common practice on Mt. Athos.
Fr. Paul, Joseph and Matt were left with such a beautiful impression of Fr. Lukas: A humble, patient and joyful man that exuded faithfulness to the holy fathers.
Parking Lot Safety
A note from Fr. Paul and Elias Hebeka
Dear brothers and sisters of St. Paul,
It has been brought to our attention that several of our parking lot lights are in need of repair. This greatly concerned us, and the entire Parish Council, considering we had all new bulbs installed just over one (1) year ago. In order to avoid throwing more money at outdated technology, which is rather wasteful, it was recommended that we convert our parking lot lights to LED’s.
As you may already know, LED’s are much less expensive to operate, much more efficient, and longer lasting. This is a top priority because, without adequate and efficient lighting, our parking lot becomes significantly less safe.
The cost to convert the seven (7) light poles to LED’s is $10,000.
We ask that you consider giving generously towards this effort in order that our parking-area be maintained in a safe and secure manner.
To date, $4,800 has been generously donated by several anonymous faithful of St. Paul.
If you prefer to donate online, simply visit our website then scroll to the bottom and select “Donate”.
May it be blessed.
In the risen Lord,
+Fr. Paul Girgis
Parish Council Chair
Join us immediately after the Divine Worship each Sunday for Fellowship Coffee Hour.
There is great joy in serving, offering hospitality, and “breaking bread” together, which are essential elements of the Christian life.
In order to avoid allowing this “labor of love” to fall upon the same few people week-after-week, please sign-up to sponsor the Fellowship Coffee Hour on any available Sunday.
“Great – what exactly am I signing up for?”
Simply bring 1 1/2 – 2 dozen Bagels sliced in half (or specialty breads, breakfast cake, etc.) to the kitchen, upon arrival to service Sunday morning. After service, set the food out and then clean up at the end – there is help so you’re not alone! We already have the toppers (peanut butter, jam, etc.), paper goods, and coffee at the parish!
“Can I support Fellowship Coffee Hour in a different way?”
No problem – make an offering that would donate towards the bagels and we will handle the rest!
Either way, keep it simple and give it a shot!
Don’t wait – send a note back to this email (email@example.com) or reach out to our Antiochain Women (AW) Chair, Anna Castley (firstname.lastname@example.org), to learn which Sunday is available.
May it be blessed!
Commemoration of a Contemporary Saint!
Feast of St. Paisios the Athonite (+1994)
Friday – July 12, 2019
Preparation Prayers 9:30AM
Divine Liturgy 10:00AM
These beautiful weekday Divine Liturgies are very quiet, peaceful and prayerful.
They last only about 45-50 minutes.
Weekly Community Bible Study
If we don’t know our faith, how can we live it?
Come learn about the Faith, which was “once for all delivered to the saints” (Jude 3). We will continue our “pilgrimage” through the edifying spiritual counsels of St. Paisios the Athonite concerning the “Passions and Virtues”.
Why is Great Vespers important?
“The service leads to the meditation of God’s word and the glorification of his love for men. It instructs and allows us to praise God for the particular events or persons whose memory is celebrated and made present to us in the Church. It prepares us for the sleep of the night and the dawn of the new day to come. On the eves of the Divine Liturgy, it begins the movement into the most perfect communion with God in the sacramental mysteries.“
Learn more about Great Vespers here
The Order of St. Ignatius
Select the screenshot (image) below and enjoy the short video speaking on the Order of St. Ignatius (OSI), a beautiful philanthropic organization within the Antiochian Archdiocese of North America.
A portion of the video contains Fr. Andrew and Kh. Mary Honore speaking on the merciful benefits and assistance married seminarians received through the hands of OSI. Fr. Paul’s family went to seminary with the Honore’s (married housing neighbors) and finished one year ahead of them.
Fr. Paul has repeatedly spoken about his experience as a married seminarian (with several children) and how the Order of St. Ignatius certainly “lessened the blow” of married student-seminary life without employment, on food stamps, etc.
A lot of good has come from OSI. Feel free to reach out to our parish ambassador Barbara Hebeka (email@example.com) with any questions or comments about the Order of St. Ignatius (OSI).