Sunday before Holy Cross – September 9, 2018
Saint of the Day
The Holy & Righteous Ancestors of God, Joachim & Anna
St. Joachim was of the tribe of Judah, and was a descendant of King David, to whom God had revealed that the Savior of the world would be born from his seed. They lived in Nazareth. They were childless into their old age and all their life they grieved over this.
They had to endure derision and scorn, since at that time childlessness was considered a disgrace. They never grumbled, but prayed to God, humbly trusting in Him.
Once, during a feast, the gifts which Joachim took to Jerusalem as an offering to God were not accepted by the priest, who considered that a childless man was not worthy to offer sacrifice to God. This pained the old man very much, and he, regarding himself the most sinful of people, decided not to return home, but to settle in solitude in a desolate place.
When St. Anna learned what humiliation her husband had endured, she entreated God with prayer and fasting to grant her a child. In his solitude the righteous
Joachim also asked God for this. The prayer of the couple was heard. An angel told them that a daughter would be born to them, who would be blessed above all other women. He also told them that She would remain a virgin, would be dedicated to the Lord and live in the Temple, and would give birth to the Savior. Obeying the instructions of the heavenly messenger, Sts. Joachim and Anna met at the Golden Gate in Jerusalem. Then, as God promised, a daughter was born to them and they named her Mary.
St. Joachim died a few years later at the age of 80, after his daughter went to live in the Temple. St. Anna died at the age of 70, two years after her husband.
Saints Joachim and Anna are often invoked by couples trying to have children.
Parish Council on Duty:
Harry Tangalakis, Marion Koliniatis, Mark Zaden, Bill Ypsilantis, Paul Fountas, Peter Kokkinos, Larry Kirifides
Resurrectional Apolytikion in the Plagal Second Mode
Ἀγγελικαὶ Δυνάμεις ἐπὶ τὸ μνῆμά σου…
Angelic powers were above Thy tomb, and they that guarded Thee became as dead. And Mary stood by the grave seeking Thine immaculate Body. Thou hast despoiled Hades and wast not tried thereby. Thou didst meet the Virgin and didst grant us life. O Thou Who didst arise from the dead, Lord, glory be to Thee.
Apolytikion for Afterfeast of the Nativity of the Theotokos in the Fourth Mode
Η γέννησίς σου Θεοτόκε…
Thy Nativity, O Theotokos, hath procliamed joy to the whole world; for from thee hath dawned the Sun of Righteousness, Christ our God, annulling the curse and bestowing the blessing, abolishing death and granting us life everlasting.
Apolytikion for Synaxis of the Holy Ancestors of God in the Second Mode
Τών δικαίων Θεοπατόρων σου Κύριε…
As we celebrate the memory of Thy righteous ancestors, O Lord, through them we beseech Thee to save our souls.
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 Fourth Mode
Ιωακείμ καί Άννα όνειδισμού ατεκνίας…
In your holy birth, Immaculate One, Joachim and Anna were rid of the shame of childlessness; Adam and Eve of the corruption of death. And so your people, free of the guilt of their sins, celebrate crying: “The barren one gives birth to the Theotokos, who nourishes our life.”
Epistle Reading ~
St. Paul’s Letter to the Galatians 6:11-18
Brethren, see with what large letters I am writing to you with my own hand. It is those who want to make a good showing in the flesh that would compel you to be circumcised, and only in order that they may not be persecuted for the cross of Christ. For even those who receive circumcision do not themselves keep the law, but they desire to have you circumcised that they may glory in your flesh. But far be it from me to glory except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world. For neither circumcision counts for anything, nor uncircumcision, but a new creation. Peace and mercy be upon all who walk by this rule, upon the Israel of God. Henceforth let no man trouble me; for I bear on my body the marks of Jesus. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit, brethren. Amen.
Gospel Reading ~
The Lord said, “No one has ascended into heaven but he who descended from heaven, the Son of man who is in heaven. And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of man be lifted up, that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God sent the Son into the world, not to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through him.”
- Dimitra Bakas & Maria Papastamatis offer an Artoklasia for the health of the Bakas, Papastamatis and Tsingelis families as well as for the health of the students of the St. Demetrios Youth programs and their families, at, this, the start of the new educational year.
- Klio Georgakakis offers an Artoklasia for the health of our Archangel Michael honorees.
Fr. Andrew’s FYI
There are two Sunday during the year reserved for the Cross on which Christ was crucified. The first is September 14th and is explained on this page. The second is during Great Lent and is on a Sunday.
The Elevation of the Cross
The Elevation of the Holy Cross is one of the Great Feasts of the Orthodox Church, celebrated on September 14. This feast is also referred to as the Exaltation of the Cross. This is also a popular name day for Stavroula/Stavros (from “stavros” meaning cross).
This feast commemorates two events:
The finding of the Cross by the Empress Helen (the mother of St. Constantine the Great) on Golgotha in 326 AD, the place where Christ was crucified.
On the spot where the Cross was discovered, St. Helen had found a hitherto unknown flower of rare beauty and fragrance, which has been named “Vasiliko,” or Basil, meaning the flower of royalty. Note that the word “Vasiliko” means “of the King,” since the word “Basileus” in Greek means “King”; so, the plant Vasiliko, Basil, is tied to the Precious Cross of the King of Glory, our Lord Jesus Christ.
Underneath the Basil, the Cross of Christ was found, but with it were the other two crosses, those used to crucify the two thieves on either side of Christ. The sign with the inscription, “Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews”, also lay among the three crosses. In order to determine which one was the true cross, a sick woman was told to kiss each of the three crosses. The woman kissed the first cross with no result. She kissed the second cross and again nothing happened. However, when the ailing woman kissed the True Cross, she was immediately made well. It so happened that a funeral procession was passing that way, and so the body of the dead man was placed on each of the crosses, and when it was placed on the True Cross, the dead man came to life — thus the name the “Life-Giving” Cross, which gives life not only to that man, but to each person who believes in the sacrifice of Christ on the Cross and His all-glorious three day Resurrection.
When the true Cross was identified, it was lifted on high for all the people to see, who then continually sang Kyrie eleison, a practice which is still enacted at current celebrations of this feast.
The recovery of the Cross on which Jesus Christ was crucified from the Persians. The Persians had captured the True Cross as a prize of war when they sacked Jerusalem in 614 AD. It was recovered by the forces of the Byzantine Empire (Eastern Roman Empire) in 627 AD, when Emperor Heraclius decisively defeated the Sassanid Persians at The Battle of Nineveh, surrounding their capital Ctesiphon, recovering the True Cross, and breaking the power of the Sassanid dynasty. The Elevation took place on March 21, 630 AD, when Emperor Heraclius entered Jerusalem amidst great rejoicing, and together with Patriarch Zacharios (609-632), transferred the Cross of Christ with great solemnity into the temple of the Resurrection, joyously held up for veneration by the Christian faithful.
(Regardless which day the feast falls, it is a strict fast day in the life of the Church.)
Educational Ministries ~ Youth and Adults
Junior Choir Do you know what Katy Perry, John Legend, Kevin Costner, Carrie Underwood and Justin Timberlake have in common? They all started in the church choir! We are calling all future stars, young and old, to join the new Junior Choir. If you are interested, call Mona at (954) 240-3271.
Greek School The Greek School at St. Demetrios will offer six classes during the academic year 2018-19. Classes A’, B’, Γ’, Δ´ and Adult Beginner are scheduled to meet on Mondays from 4:15 to 6:00 PM. The Advanced Modern Greek class will meet from 6:00 to 8:00 PM. Registration details will be announced as soon as the website is updated. For more information, please call the St. Demetrios office at 954-467-1515 Monday through Thursday. Welcome to all who wish to explore the Modern Greek language and its 3,000+ year history.
Σας προσκαλούμε στη μελέτη της ωραίας ελληνικής γλώσσας που έχει βαθειές ρίζες στην αρχαιότητα.
Youth Programs Volunteers Our community is blessed with a holistic youth program that includes Sunday School, Greek School, Dance, GOYA, HOPE/JOY and a Youth Library. All these programs need volunteers to share in the fulfilling work of educating our youngsters. All volunteers must fill out an application each year. Please pick up an application from the table in the south narthex and turn it in to the office or to the appropriate youth adviser.
THE TOTAL STEWARD
“All things come from you, and your own have we given you.” (1 Chronicles 29:14)
These words sound so familiar to us Orthodox Christians who hear at the anaphora of every Liturgy: “Your own gifts, form Your own, we offer to You with all our being and for all our blessings.”
So often we Christians reflect the values of society. If materialism is in, driving the finest car, living in the swankiest house, sending your children to the priciest school, then we embrace materialism. If living together before marriage is generally acceptable in society, then we live together before marriage. If moral relativism is the ethic of the time, then we live accordingly. We too easily reflect the values of the society around us. The total Steward begins not with society’s values but with Jesus Christ. Out of that relationship he lives and acts toward God, self, and others. What is a total Steward? David’s words, in I Chronicles, are a guide to some answers. “All things come from you, and your own have we given you.”
In the first place, a total Steward affirms that God owns all things. Psalm 24 reflects this great truth: “The earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof; the world and they that dwell therein.” God doesn’t have to be helped, supported, or subsidized. He made and owns all things, and that includes your life and mine. A Christian Steward simply acknowledges what is already true.
A total Steward acknowledges his accountability to God. In Psalm 8 and in other places we are told that God gives us dominion over the earth. However, we are managers, not owners. A Steward is entrusted to manage what belongs, to the owner. With that trust comes accountability. Many parables of Jesus deal with trust and accountability. The parable of the talents reminds us that however little or however much we have, we are accountable for its use, all of it. We must give a final answer to God. Our auditing day is coming and the report must be filed. Reckoning is on the books. The faithful Steward will not view this encounter with God with dread but with joy and peace as he thinks on the reward. We are accountable not just for physical and financial resources; we are accountable for life itself and the experiences that come with it. We are responsible to God for what we let sorrow and suffering, happiness and joy, do to us and through us. The total Steward realizes and acts on his accountability because it matters in this life and in the life to come.
Finally, the total Steward accepts the challenge of responsibility in managing God’s gifts. The total Steward will use his spiritual gifts for the sake of others. Each of us has differing gifts, but as Stewards we will seek to use our gifts for God’s glory and the service of humanity. The good Steward will also share the gospel, remembering that Jesus said, “You shall be my witnesses.” By word of mouth and the life he leads, the good Steward will say to others, “Jesus Christ is the most important priority in my life, and I want you to know him and love him as I do.”
Equally as important, the good Steward will give his financial resources with compassion. He will give, invest and spend for the glory of God and out of gratitude. Brothers and sisters in Christ you are either controlled by God’s desire for total Stewardship or by the world’s materialistic selfish outlook. Dr. Martin Lloyd Jones says, “If a materialistic outlook is really, controlling us, we are godless, whatever we may say. Our Lord tells us that even worse than atheistic materialism is a materialism that thinks it is godly. ‘If the light that is in you be darkness, how great is the darkness’ … The man who thinks he is godly because he talks about God and says he believes in God and goes to a place of worship occasionally, but is really living for certain earthly things–how great is that man’s darkness.”
What do you really live for? Where does Jesus Christ, His Church and service for him fit into your concerns? Does he have your heart, your pocketbook? Don’t trifle away your life and opportunity; give yourself and all of life completely to Him, and take the high road of faithful and total Stewardship.
“Your own gifts, from Your own, we offer to You with all our being and for all our blessings.”
Elevation of the Holy Cross Please remember to bring in basil for the September 14th Liturgy.
Large Hall Renovation Renovation
Breaking the concrete floor in the bathrooms. When done, they will be ADA compliant.
Caulking prior to painting!
Support our sister Parish
Car Donation Dr. Hionis has generously agreed to donate all proceeds from the sale of his 2006 Cadillac DTS with 66,000 miles to St. Demetrios. It has new tires and is in excellent condition. The asking price is $4,000. Please contact the church office or one of the Parish Council members if you are interested in purchasing this car while simultaneously helping St. Demetrios.
Calendar of Events for the Week
Sunday 9/09 Start of educational programs
Archangel Michael Honorees Celebration
9:00am/10:00am Orthros/Divine Liturgy
11:15am Sunday School
12:00pm Pastitsio Luncheon
12:30pm Greek dance
4:15pm-6:00pm Greek Classes A’, B’, G’, D’ & Adult Beginner
6:00pm-8:00pm Advanced Greek class
6:30pm Elevation of the Holy Cross
10:00am Divine Liturgy
9:00am/10:00am Orthros/Divine Liturgy
11:15am Sunday School
12:30pm Greek dance