Christ the Savior Orthodox Mission
Orthodox Church in America, Diocese of New England
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Christ the Savior Orthodox Church

Bangor, Maine

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December 2016 Bulletin

Schedule of Services:

Wednesday November 30: Vespers in Orono 6:00pm  dinner to follow

Thursday December 1 :  Vespers in Camden at St Thomas Episcopal  6:00pm with Dinner and Bible Study to follow. (Matthew Chapter 8)

Sunday December 4:  Hours 9:30, Divine Liturgy 10:00  Meal and Patrisitic Reading to follow

Wednesday December 7: Vespers in Orono 6:00pm  dinner to follow

Sunday December 11:  Hours 9:30, Divine Liturgy 10:00  Meal and Patrisitic Reading to follow

Wednesday December 14: Vespers in Orono 6:00pm  dinner to follow

Thursday December 15 :  Vespers in Brunswick  at St Pauls Episcopal on Pleasant Street at 6:00pm with Dinner and Bible Study to follow. (Matthew Chapter 9)

Sunday December 18:  Hours 9:30, Divine Liturgy 10:00  Meal and Patrisitic Reading to follow

Wednesday December 21: Vespers in Orono 6:00pm  dinner to follow

Saturday Evening December 24  CHRISTMAS SERVICES:  Full Christmas services starting at 7:30pm. Conclude with FESTAL Divine Liturgy and Feast to follow. Bring lots of good food to break the fast and celebrate and blankets for young children for napping! We will probably be done by about 11pm.

Note that we will not be doing services on Sunday Christmas Day, so make every effort to attend the Service on Saturday Evening.

CONFESSION: During the Season of the Nativity Fast, leading up to Christmas, everyone should come to confession at least once in preparation for communion at the Christmas service. Confessions are always available before Divine Liturgy during the Hours every Sunday, or after any of the Vespers services. According to our Church’s Hierarchs, this is a minimum requirement and we should participate willingly in the Mystery of Repentance regularly, if not weekly—but at least once during each of the four great fasts of the Church year.

CHURCH NEWS

Christ the Savior celebrates the creation of a Church Parish Council and formal adoption of Bylaws based on a Parish Meeting held after Services on November 13. Elected to Serve were: Chris Maas (President and Treasurer), Joan Proudman (Vice-President), Lisa Metropoulos (Secretary), Victoria Bucklin, Michael Boucher (Website and Media), Michael Kelley, Johan Selmer-Larsen, and Fr Scott Ceraphim Mitchell (as Attached Priest). We are honored by the size and the quality of our new Council and will plan on Monthly Meetings Starting with our next meeting on Sunday December 11th after Services.

We are awaiting an answer from the Catholic Church regarding our request to hold regular services in one of the Bangor area buildings not intensively used at this time. We expect an affirmative response, but must pray the God guide us in finding more appropriate housing for the Church Services. We should also be in prayer for a permanent home of our own, in the Lord’s time!

 Prayer requests-  Please remember the following in your personal prayer both Orthodox and Non-Orthodox included. (Place names on the prayer sheet for inclusion herein)

 For Health and Salvation: Erin Farrar, Andrea Adams, Mrs Whitehouse, Mr Scott, Claudia Pita, Melvin, Andre, Karen, Laurence, Rebecca, Sean, Deb, Dale, Richard, Jacob Victor (Newborn), Michael, Victoria, Angelina, Alma.

For Repose and God’s mercy: Robin Ball, Tatiana, Innocent, Alice, Richard.

For Consideration: We are now a fully functional Mission Parish of the Orthodox Church in America and need to seriously consider our place in the Body of Christ, both as individuals and as a Church. Each of us has particular gifts and talents given by God to be used for His glory in this place, at this time. Pray and ask the Lord to reveal His plan for you so that we may truly begin to raise up the name of Jesus Christ in a manner befitting God, and according to all the grace that has been given to each of us. We are called to serve and to worship and to pray—to be the salt of the earth. May we arise as a sweet fragrance to our wonderful state of Maine and to all its people. Let us commend each other and all our lives unto Christ our God!!

Orthodox Teaching of the Month

We fast before the Great Feast of the Nativity in order to prepare ourselves for the celebration of Our Lord’s birth. As in the case of Great Lent, the Nativity Fast is one of preparation, during which we focus on the coming of the Savior by fasting, prayer, and almsgiving.

By fasting, we “shift our focus” from ourselves to others, spending less time worrying about what to eat, when to eat, how much to eat, and so on in order to use our time in increased prayer and caring for the poor. We learn through fasting that we can gain control over things which we sometimes allow to control us—and for many people, food is a controlling factor. 

[We live in the only society in which an entire TV network is devoted to food!] While fasting from food, however, we are also challenged to fast from sin, from gossip, from jealousy, from anger, and from those other things which, while well within our control, we all too often allow to control us.

Just as we would refrain from eating a lot before going to an expensive restaurant for dinner—if we “ruin our appetite” we will enjoy the restaurant less—so too we fast before the Nativity in order to more fully feast and celebrate on the Nativity itself.

During the Nativity Fast, we are called upon to refrain from meat, dairy, fish, wine, and olive oil. At the same time, we are challenged, within this framework, to fast to the best of our ability, and to do so consistently.
If we must modify the extent to which we fast within this framework, it is of course possible, but in every instance our fasting should be consistent and regular, for Christ does not see fasting as an option, but as a “must.”
In Matthew Christ says, “WHEN you fast, do not be like the hypocrites,” not “IF you fast” or “IF YOU CHOOSE to fast.”

Finally, it seems quite odd that in our society—a society in which people gladly and freely spend huge sums of money for diets, most of which recommend that one refrain from red meats and dairy products—fasting is not more widely embraced. How odd that a Jenny Craig consultant or diet guru or physician will tell us to refrain from eating meat or cheese or butter and we will gladly embrace—and pay large sums of money for—his or her advice, while when the Church offers the same advice [at “no cost”] we tend to balk, as if we were being asked to do the impossible.

 Christ the Savior Contact information:

For Hospital visits, Pastoral visits, Bible Studies or Evangelistic Outreach needs, please call Fr Scott Ceraphim at 207-478-3088. For any Church related administrative of charitable donation needs, please call Chris Maas at 207-924-4553.