Sunday of the Prodigal Son – February 16, 2020
Through the parable of today’s Gospel, our Saviour has set forth three things for us: the condition of the sinner, the rule of repentance, and the greatness of God’s compassion. The divine Fathers have put this reading the week after the parable of the Publican and Pharisee so that, seeing in the person of the Prodigal Son our own wretched condition — inasmuch as we are sunken in sin, far from God and His Mysteries — we might at last come to our senses and make haste to return to Him by repentance during these holy days of the Fast.Furthermore, those who have wrought many great iniquities, and have persisted in them for a long time, oftentimes fall into despair, thinking that there can no longer be any forgiveness for them; and so being without hope, they fall every day into the same and even worse iniquities. Therefore, the divine Fathers, that they might root out the passion of despair from the hearts of such people, and rouse them to the deeds of virtue, have set the present parable at the forecourts of the Fast, to show them the surpassing goodness of God’s compassion, and to teach them that there is no sin — no matter how great it may be — that can overcome at any time His love for man.
Parish Council on Duty:
Harry Tangalakis, Marion Koliniatis, Mark Zaden, Bill Ypsilantis, Paul Fountas, Peter Kokkinos
Resurrectional Apolytikion in the Second Mode
Ὅτε κατῆλθες πρὸς τὸν θάνατον …
When Thou didst descend unto death, O Life Immortal, then didst Thou slay Hades with the lightning of Thy Divinity. And when Thou didst also raise the dead out of the nethermost depths, all the powers in the Heavens cried out: O Life-giver, Christ our God, glory be to Thee.
Apolytikion of St. Demetrios in the Third Mode
Μέγαν εύρατο εv τοίς κιvδύvοις …
Greatness has been found in danger. You are champion of the world. A victor who could turn the nations back. You boldly encouraged Nestor to defeat Lyaeus in the arena. Therefore, holy great martyr Demetrios, intercede with Christ our God, to grant us His great mercy.
Seasonal Kontakion in the Third Mode
Τῆς πατρῴας, δόξης σου, ἀποσκιρτήσας ἀφρόνως …
O Father, foolishly I ran away from Your glory, and in sin, squandered the riches You gave me. Wherefore, I cry out to You with the voice of the Prodigal, “I have sinned before You Compassionate Father. Receive me in repentance and take me as one of Your hired servants.”
Epistle Reading ~The reading is from St. Paul’s First Letter to the Corinthians 6:12-20.
Brethren, “all things are lawful for me,” but not all things are helpful. “All things are lawful for me,” but I will not be enslaved by anything. “Food is meant for the stomach and the stomach for food” — and God will destroy both one and the other. The body is not meant for immorality, but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body. And God raised the Lord and will also raise us up by his power. Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Shall I therefore take the members of Christ and make them members of a prostitute? Never! Do you not know that he who joins himself to a prostitute becomes one body with her? For, as it is written, “The two shall become one flesh.” But he who is united to the Lord becomes one spirit with him. Shun immorality. Every other sin which a man commits is outside the body; but the immoral man sins against his own body. Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, which you have from God? You are not your own; you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body and in your spirit which belong to God.
Gospel Reading ~ The Reading is from Luke 15:11-32
The Lord said this parable: “There was a man who had two sons; and the younger of them said to his father, ‘Father, give me the share of the property that falls to me.’ And he divided his living between them. Not many days later, the younger son gathered all he had and took his journey into a far country, and there he squandered his property in loose living. And when he had spent everything, a great famine arose in that country, and he began to be in want. So he went and joined himself to one of the citizens of that country, who sent him into his fields to feed swine. And he would gladly have filled his belly with the pods that the swine ate; and no one gave him anything. But when he came to himself he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired servants have bread enough and to spare, but I perish here with hunger! I will arise and go to my father, and I will say to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you; I am no longer worthy to be called your son; treat me as one of your hired servants.’ And he arose and came to his father. But while he was yet at a distance, his father saw him and had compassion, and ran and embraced him and kissed him. And the son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you; I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’ But the father said to his servants, ‘Bring quickly the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet; and bring the fatted calf and kill it, and let us eat and make merry; for this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found.’ And they began to make merry. Now his elder son was in the field; and as he came and drew near to the house, he heard music and dancing. And he called one of the servants and asked what this meant. And he said to him, ‘Your brother has come, and your father has killed the fatted calf, because he has received him safe and sound.’ But he was angry and refused to go in. His father came out and entreated him, but he answered his father, ‘Lo, these many years I have served you, and I never disobeyed your command; yet you never gave me a kid, that I might make merry with my friends. But when this son of yours came, who has devoured your living with harlots, you killed for him the fatted calf!’ And he said to him, ‘Son, you are always with me, and all that is mine is yours. It was fitting to make merry and be glad, for this your brother was dead, and is alive; he was lost, and is found.'”
Mary Kumaras (40 days) Survived by her children Dee Petinakis and her husband Peter, Marika Bougdanos and her husband Theodosios and James Kumaras and his wife Kathi, 4 grandchildren and 1 great granddaughter.
Lambros & Chrysanthi Pappas, Gus & Anna Janulis, Theodore, Helen, James, Jennie, Paul, Anastasia, John, Alice (Janulis) survived by Helen Pappas.
Chris Zahartzis (6 yrs) survived by his daughters Anna and Kristina.
Today we welcome Dina Alyateem and Muhannad Al Twal as they present Katrina for the traditional 40 day blessing.
Coffee Hour In memory of her husband Mark Hatzikostantis (his 40 day memorial was chanted on February 9) Dina Hatzikostantis has sponsored today’s coffee hour.
· Thanks to the volunteers, dancers, sponsors, and patrons for making the 2020 Greek Festival at St. Demetrios Church a successful one.
· In the Bookstore: Triodion has begun. The Road Back to Christ by Fr. Stavros Akrotirianakis offers daily wisdom from the Sunday of the Publican through Lent and Pascha. Get started today on your journey to Pascha.
·Philoptochos 2020 Memberships Become a new member or renew your membership @$50 for 2020 as you support the national, metropolis and local organizations of the philanthropic arm of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese in America. See Paula Kirifides or Denise Filosofos today.
· Women’s Retreat: Our Metropolis Philoptochos is offering its 14th Annual Spiritual Retreat for women, March 20-22 at the Diakonia Retreat Center. The registration deadline is March 1. Cost is $175 which includes 2 nights lodging and 5 meals. Go to https://atlmetropolis.org/14th-annual-spiritual-retreat1 to see the flyer and download registration materials.
· Limbitless solutions The Daughters of Penelope will have their annual luncheon on March 21st at the Lighthouse Point Yacht Club. More information will be coming soon. Everyone is excited to have a chance to win a beautiful raffle basket with great prizes. We are looking for new or gently used items, gift cards or any other gift certificates that you would be willing to donate to help support our cause, “Limbitless solutions”, located at the University of Central Florida in Orlando. Together with our donations and their research team we assist young and the young at heart that are in need of prosthetic limbs. Please contact Melissa Bakatselos 954-661-5707, Tara Bakatselos 954-650-1387 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information and drop off locations.
· A LEAP YEAR DAY EVENT…. Don’t miss and plan to attend the BINGO/Feather Party on SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 29TH in the Church Hall. Bring family and friends to this fun evening with great prizes, 50/50 raffle, and refreshments. Doors open at 5:30pm and games begin at 6:00pm (new times). Tickets @$7/person include 2 Bingo cards. Ticket proceeds benefit Feeding South Florida. BE SURE TO BUY YOUR TICKETS ON FEBRUARY 23rd. See Athena Loucas at Coffee Hour. Sponsored by Ladies Philoptochos Society.
To the Reverend Clergy and the Esteemed Philoptochos Chapter Presidents of the Metropolis of Atlanta:
My Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
I greet you with love and joy in the Name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, praying that you and your families receive His blessings of health, peace, and joy, as we have begun the Triodion!
For those parishes who have already collected the proceeds of a second tray to benefit those affected by the Australian wildfires, I commend your speedy follow-up. Our Archdiocese has informed us that donations, once collected, should be submitted to the National Philoptochos, who has been authorized to distribute the funds to our brothers and sisters in Australia.
For those parishes who were unable to pass a second tray yesterday, our sister Archdiocese would certainly appreciate the assistance.
As we continue through this pre-Lenten period, may our continued intercessions to our Creator help to bring a spirit of healing and peace to those individuals and communities affected. I remain,
Paternally yours, with much love in the Lord,
+ A L E X I O S
Metropolitan of Atlanta
Calendar of Events for the Week
9:00am/10:00am Orthros/Divine Liturgy
11:00am Sunday School
4:15pm-6:00pm Greek School Classes Α, Β, Γ & Adult Beginner Section 1
6:00pm-8:00pm Greek School Adult Beginner Section 2
6:00pm-8:00pm Greek School Advanced Class
10:30am Visiting Angels meeting
11:00am Agape luncheon for seniors
9:00am/10:00am Orthros/Divine Liturgy
11:00am Sunday School