Russian Orthodox Church
of St Nicholas
Dallas, Texas
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Redeeming the Time Vol. 01.18 Sunday of the Last Judgment Feb 9/22 1998


Redeeming the Time

St. Nicholas Orthodox Church Dallas TX

See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise,

redeeming the time, because the days are evil.

Feb 9/22 1998

Sunday of the Last Judgment

AKA

"Meatfare Sunday"

Vol. 01.18

News and Announcements *

The Welcome mat *

Travelers *

Sick *

Sunday Catechetical Lectures *

Catechetical Topics Solicited *

Questions about the Lenten Services *

Gleanings for the Holy Fathers *

The Ladder to Perfection *

Two necessary kinds of fasting *

Do Not Judge *

Burning the Demons *

Questions about the Lenten Services - answers *

News and Announcements

The Welcome mat

If all goes well, David and Helen Miller, and their three children, Irene, Christina, and Rebecca will be moving to Dallas the next weekend. They are from Austin, and wish to join our parish. Welcome!

Travelers

Sergius (Sumeet) Bahadur will be traveling the entire month of February and part of March, in India and South Africa. Please pray for his safe return, and spiritual protection during his trip.

Catechuman Nicholas will be abroad for a month (in Copenhagen). Please pray for his safe return.

Sick

Please pray for the sick every day. Your prayer can be very simple: "Lord have mercy upon Thy (suffering) servantů"

    • Priest Martin
    • Serious back pain
    • Mother Seraphima - God's little sufferer
    • Tim Clader
    • (serious ankle injury )
    • David Miller
    • David just had knee surgery, and will be having back surgery after he recuperates from his knee surgery
    • Alexandra
    • (breast cancer)
    • Emily
    • (severe headaches)
    • Iakavos (James)
    • James is the son of Fr Paul Volmensky (CA). He has problems with pain in his legs and ankles.

Sunday Catechetical Lectures

Fr Seraphim will begin Sunday catechetical lectures next Sunday (Forgiveness Sunday). They will be a little bit after our trapeza (breakfast) and will continue for the foreseeable future. Participation is absolutely invited and welcomed, unless everyone wishes to hear Father give a 45 minute sermon.

All of us need to learn more about our faith, or be reminded of the things we know. Please make it a priority in your life to set aside Sunday for worship, and learning about holy things. Time is precious. Let's use it wisely.

Fr Seraphim will explain the Great Canon of St. Andrew next week, the prayer of St. Ephrem, and possibly some of the other Lenten services.

Of course, ANYONE is welcome at these sessions, whether they are Orthodox or not.

Catechetical Topics Solicited

If there are certain subjects that you would like to understand more about, please tell Fr Seraphim.

Questions about the Lenten Services

QUESTION 1

What service begins Great Lent, when is it served, and what distinctive rite is observed which is done only once a year?

QUESTION 2

What distinctive penitential prayer is said in almost every service during the Lenten season? Give the full text. You should know it by heart!

QUESTION 3

Give the two ways in which this prayer is said in the services.

QUESTION 4

Name ALL the services it is said, and ALL the services it is not said (paying particular attention to what day it is).

QUESTION 5

Name the last time this prayer is said during before Pascha.

QUESTION 6

Name the times outside of Great that the prayer is also appointed.

QUESTION 7

What distinctive, long penitential hymn is chanted 5 times in Great Lent. Name the days, and the services it is chanted in. What else is read in the last service?

QUESTION 8

There is a service that is sung 5 times in the Lenten period, as well as several other times throughout the year. Name this service, and mention the other days outside of Great Lent that it is chanted (hint: there are usually 4 other times). There are two ways in which this service is served. Name them.

QUESTION 9

Divine liturgy is not served every day during Great Lent. What service is chanted so that the faithful can partake of the holy mysteries? Who is the author?

QUESTION 10

When is the liturgy of St. John Chrysostom celebrated during the Lenten period?

Gleanings for the Holy Fathers

The Ladder to Perfection

This is the ladder by which Christians ascend toward perfection, that is toward love of enemies. What, then, Christian? When you are commanded to love your enemies, and to do good to those that hate you - commanded by Him Who created you and redeemed the lost by His blood and death, and Who holds your death and life in His hand - will you consent and forgive him who offended you? If an earthly king had commanded you not only to forgive your neighbor his offense, but also to serve him, or else be put to death, which had you better choose? To die or to forgive and serve your neighbor? I hope that you would rather wish to forgive and serve your neighbor than to die. The Heavenly King commands you not only to forgive him that offended you, but also to love your enemies, and to do good to those that hate you. Otherwise eternal death will follow those that do not hear the commandment of the Heavenly King, `Not every one that saith unto Me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the Kingdom of Heaven, but he that doeth the will of My Father which is in heaven (Mt. 7:21).

St. Tikhon of Zadonsk, Journey to Heaven.

Two necessary kinds of fasting

One day St. Epiphanius sent someone to Abba Hilarion with this request, "Come, and let us see one another before we depart from the body." When he came, they rejoiced in each other's company. During their meal, they were brought a fowl. Epiphanius took it and gave it to Hilarion. Then Abba Hilarion said to him, "Forgive me, but since I received the habit I have not eaten meat that has been killed." Then the bishop answered, "Since I took the habit, I have not allowed anyone to go to sleep with a complaint against me, and I have not gone to rest with a complaint against anyone."

The old man replied, "Forgive me, your way of life is better than mine." From the Desert Fathers

Do Not Judge

One day Abba Isaac went to a monastery. He saw a brother committing a sin and he condemned him. When he returned to the desert, an angel of the Lord came and stood in front of the door of his cell, and said, "I will not let you enter." But he persisted saying, "What is the matter?" And the angel replied, "God has sent me to ask you where you want to throw the guilty brother whom you have condemned." Immediately he repented and said, "I have sinned, forgive me." Then the angel said, "Get up, God has forgiven you. But from now on, be careful not to judge someone before God has done so." From the Desert Fathers

Burning the Demons

An old man said, "If you say to someone, 'Forgive me,' in humiliating yourself you are burning the demons. From the Desert Fathers

Questions about the Lenten Services - answers

ANSWER 1

Forgiveness vespers, which marks the beginning of Great Lent, is served in the evening (in some parish usage, the early afternoon, a short time after Divine liturgy) of Forgiveness Sunday, which is also called Cheesefare Sunday, being the last day that Orthodox eat cheese, any other milk product, and eggs and fish.

The previous Sunday (The Sunday of the Last Judgment, or Meatfare Sunday) was the last in which meat was eaten. At the end of the forgiveness vespers is the "rite of forgiveness". The pastor preaches a short homily about forgiveness, asks forgiveness of everyone with a prostration, and everyone in turn

approaches the pastor and they exchange mutual forgiveness. A receiving line is formed, so that all the faithful exchange forgiveness with each other, individually. In this way, we begin Lent having no bitterness towards anyone (if we do in our heart what we perform externally in the ceremony).

ANSWER 2

The prayer of St. Ephrem is said in most services of Great Lent, and pious Orthodox include it in their morning and evening prayers. It has three parts as follows:

O Lord and Master of my life, a spirit of idleness, despondency, ambition, idle talking give me not.

But rather a spirit of chastity, humble-mindedness, patience, and love bestow up me Thy servant.

Yea, O Lord and King, grant me to see my failings and not condemn my brother; for blessed art Thou

unto the ages of amen..

ANSWER 3

Usually, the prayer of St. Ephrem is said with 4 prostrations and 12 bows as follows:

O Lord and Master of my life, a spirit of idleness, despondency, ambition, idle talking give me not.

Full Prostration

But rather a spirit of chastity, humble-mindedness, patience, and love bestow up me Thy servant.

Full Prostration

Yea, O Lord and King, grant me to see my failings and not condemn my brother; for blessed art Thou

unto the ages of amen..

Full Prostration

Then twelve "reverences" (bows from the waist with the sign of the Cross). With each one say:

God, cleanse me a sinner..

Then say the entire prayer all at once, and make a full prostration.

There are some times that the prayer is said once, with a prostration after each sentence.

ANSWER 4

The prayer of St. Ephrem is said in almost every weekday (Monday - Friday) Lenten service.

For The weekday Services:

  • Twice, with 4 prostrations and 12 bows.
  • Vespers: (Monday - Thursday night)
  • Great Compline (if appointed)
  • Midnight Office: (Mon - Fri morning)
  • Matins (Mon - Fri morning)
  • The Hours (1st, 3rd, 6th, 9th)
  • The Typica

Once, with 3 prostrations.

  • Vespers: (Sunday night)
  • The Presanctified Liturgy (There are two times the prayer is said this way).

The prayer is not said in Small Compline.

It is also not said in the Hours following the Great Canon service (matins on the 5th Thursday of Great Lent), because of the length of this service.

On weekends, it is not said on Saturday at all, or on Sunday, until after the entrance at vespers (which marks the "beginning" of the new day, Monday).

ANSWER 5

After the presanctified liturgy on Holy Wednesday, the prayer is said after the dismissal. It is not said again in church.

ANSWER 6

The prayer is said the first three days of Holy Week, at vespers and matins.

It is also said Thursday Vespers and Friday Matins and Vespers, of Cheesefare Week

There are typicons which appoint the prayer on the first day of the Apostles Fast, and of the Nativity Fast, if they fall on a weekday.

ANSWER 7

The Great Canon of St. Andrew of Crete is chanted in four parts on the first four evenings of Great Lent, as part of the Great Compline service (Clean Monday - Thursday), and the entire long and compunctionate hymn is chanted as part of matins on the Sixth Thursday of Great Lent (the Thursday before the Sunday of St. Mary of Egypt). In this latter service, which is usually served on Wednesday evening, the entire life of St. Mary of Egypt, by St. Sophronius, is read in two parts.

ANSWER 8

The Divine Liturgy of St. Basil the Great is served on all the Sundays of Great Lent. It is also served on, St. Basil's day (January 1st),. These services appear to be just like the usual liturgy of St. John Chrysostom, except that the Megalynarion hymn to the Theotokos is different, and the priest's private prayers are longer.

It is also served on Holy Thursday and Holy Saturday and is usually served on the prefestivals of Nativity and Theophany. These services are "Vespral Divine Liturgies", where the service begins as a vespers, and switches to St. Basil's liturgy after the Old Testament readings. These are the ONLY times when a vespral divine liturgy is appointed, except when the Vespral Divine liturgy of St. John Chrysostom is served for the Feast of the Annunciation when it falls on a weekday in Great Lent. On all other feasts of the Lord and the Theotokos, the vigil service is served the eve of the feast and the liturgy of St. John Chrysostom is served in the morning.

In all, St. Basil's liturgy is usually celebrated 10 times in the church year.

ANSWER 9

The Liturgy of the Presanctified Gifts was written by St. Gregory the Dialogist, Pope of Rome. This service is very similar to vespers.

ANSWER 10

On Saturday and Sunday the Lenten fast is relaxed a bit, and the services are more festive, on account of the celebration of the resurrection. The services are celebrated very similar to times outside of Great Lent. The liturgy of St. John Chrysostom is celebrated on every Saturday morning (but not on Sunday, which is reserved for St. Basil's liturgy). It is also usually celebrated on the Annunciation, and is always celebrated on Great feasts of the Lord, such as Palm Sunday.

All unsigned or unattributed portions Copyright 1998 Fr Seraphim Holland

Address: 2102 Summit, McKinney TX 75071

Phone: 972 529-2754

Email: seraphim@orthodox.net

Web: http://www.orthodox.net

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Russian Orthodox Church
of St Nicholas
Dallas, Texas
Phone: 972 529-2754
Priest Seraphim Holland

nicholas@orthodox.net
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Fr. Seraphim Holland
Email:
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Phone:
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