Sunday, September 22nd, 2019

Hieromartyr Phocas, Bishop of Sinope: Hieromartyr Phocas was born in the city of Sinope. From youth he led a virtuous Christian life,

and in his adult years he became Bishop of Sinope...click here to continue.

Prophet Jonah: The Holy Prophet Jonah lived in the eighth century before the birth of Christ and was a successor of the Prophet Elisha...click here to continue.

Bishop Daniel’s Message for September

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

“Your Nativity, O Virgin, has proclaimed joy to the whole universe! The Sun of Righteousness, Christ our God has shone from You, O Theotokos! By annulling the curse, He bestowed a blessing. By destroying death, He has granted us eternal Life.”  –Troparion of the Feast of the Nativity of the Theotokos

For Orthodox Christians, September 1st marks the beginning of the New Church Year. As we enter into this New Year of Grace, the first Great Feast that is celebrated is the Feast of the Nativity of the Theotokos, September 8.  Happily, this year this Feast falls on a Sunday, enabling everyone to be present to celebrate in Mary’s honor and to invoke her prayers and protection for our parish and our families as we enter into this new liturgical year.

In reflecting on the birth of Mary and her singular role in the history of salvation, we see that the Gospel of John speaks of only two moments when the life of Jesus intersects with that of his Mother.  Although Mary’s life was intimately connected to that of her Son from the very moment of His conception and although Matthew and Luke make special note of this, John only mentions two moments: the beginning of the Lord’s public ministry at the wedding feast in Cana (John 2:1-12) and the moment when Mary stands beneath the cross (John 19:25-27). Perhaps the Holy Evangelist wants to show us the Mother of Jesus in these two apparently opposite situations in life – the bright joy of a wedding feast and the profound sorrow at the death of a child.

In recounting the narrative of the Lord’s Passion and Death, the first thing John mentions is that Mary “stands near the cross of Jesus,” (John 19:25) close to her Son as He suffered the pains of the Cross and shed His blood for the salvation of mankind. Mary stood there, at the foot of the cross filled with sorrow, yet with unwavering conviction, courage, and fidelity. This is the main way that Mary shows herself in the Gospel of John - she stands near those who suffer, those from whom the world flees or those whom the world sets aside or marginalizes, those who suffer any sorrow or loss and those who are on the very fringes of our society.  It is in her role as mother that Mary also stands close by them (us) all, steadfast and faithful beneath their cross of misunderstanding and suffering.

Mary also shows us how to “stand near” these situations; it demands more than simply acknowledging the realities of human suffering.  Rather, it means that those in painful situations should feel us standing faithfully and fearlessly at their side. All those suffering any pain or loss can experience the Mother who remains near them, for in their sufferings she sees the open wounds of her Son Jesus. She learned this at the foot of the cross. We too are called to “touch” the sufferings of others. Following the example of Mary, let us go out to meet our suffering brothers and sisters, to console them and accompany them. Let us not be afraid to experience the power of tenderness, to be involved and to let our lives become complicated for the sake of others. Inspired by Her, the Most Pure One, let us remain steadfast and faithful, our hearts at peace in God in even the most difficult circumstances of life. Let us be ever ready to lift up the fallen, raise up the lowly, showing them the love and the “peace beyond understanding” that comes from God.

Grateful that the beginning of September brings with it this special Feast, let us also acknowledge that every day of every year, no matter the month or the season, offers us the blessed opportunity to give thanks to God for His many blessings, just as each day presents the opportunity to be present with those who are suffering in any way.  Every day of every year invites us to draw closer to Christ, to grow in holiness, to bear witness to our faith, and to continue to stand with those who are suffering and in any kind of need.  As we enter into the New Church Year, we look forward to another Year of Grace, living the Gospel, serving our brothers and sisters, living the Church’s liturgical cycle which invites to enter, ever more deeply, into the great mystery of our salvation.

May the Lord continue to bless our parish community, our families, friends, and all those who are dear to us.  And may we confide ourselves, our families, our parish, and all the world to the loving maternal care and protection of the Holy Theotokos.

With love in the Lord,

+Bishop Daniel

 

 

 

Upcoming Calendar
  • 22

    Sep

    Sunday
    9:00 Divine Liturgy
  • 28

    Sep

    Saturday
    5:00 Great Vespers
  • 29

    Sep

    Sunday
    9:00 Divine Liturgy
  • 5

    Oct

    Saturday
    5:00 Great Vespers
  • 6

    Oct

    Sunday
    9:00 Divine Liturgy
  • 12

    Oct

    Saturday
    5:00 Great Vespers
  • 13

    Oct

    Sunday
    9:00 Divine Liturgy
  • 19

    Oct

    Saturday
    5:00 Great Vespers
  • 20

    Oct

    Sunday
    9:00 Divine Liturgy
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Pilgrimage to Alaska 2020

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Orthodox Church in America

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On Sunday, August 4, 2019, His Grace Bishop Daniel of Santa Rosa presided at the Divine Liturgy at the Church of the Icon of the Mother of God “Joy of All Who Sorrow” in Moscow... Click here to view

 

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Parish News

September Newsletter

September Announcements

Deep cleaning of kitchen, September 21st.

 

CONGRATULATIONS AND MANY YEARS! to Father Thomas Frisby and the Clergy and Faithful of Exaltation of the Holy Cross Romanian Orthodox Mission as they celebrate their patronal feast. “O Lord, save Thy people and bless Thine inheritance…”

The Mission of The Orthodox Church in America, the local autocephalous Orthodox Christian Church, is to be faithful in fulfilling the commandment of Christ to “Go into all the world and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit…”

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The Holy Scripture is a collection of books written over multiple centuries by those inspired by God to do so. It is the primary witness to the Orthodox Christian faith, within Holy Tradition and often described as its highest point. It was written by the prophets and apostles in human language, inspired by the Holy Spirit, and collected, edited, and canonized by the Church.

Daily Readings >

Holiness or sainthood is a gift (charisma) given by God to man, through the Holy Spirit. Man's effort to become a participant in the life of divine holiness is indispensable, but sanctification itself is the work of the Holy Trinity, especially through the sanctifying power of Jesus Christ, who was incarnate, suffered crucifixion, and rose from the dead, in order to lead us to the life of holiness, through the communion with the Holy Spirit.

Today's Saints >

Saints Peter & Paul Orthodox Church
1614 E Monte Vista Road
Phoenix, Arizona 85006