1020 Regent St
Madison, WI 53715
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Sunday, November 20, 2022
23rd Sunday after Pentecost (9th of Luke)
Forefeast of the Entrance into the Temple; Ven. Gregory of Decapolis
The Entry of the Most Holy Mother of God into the Temple
Commemorated on November 21
(OCA) According to Holy Tradition, the Entry of the Most Holy Theotokos into the Temple took place in the following manner. The parents of the Virgin Mary, Saints Joachim and Anna, praying for an end to their childlessness, vowed that if a child were born to them, they would dedicate it to the service of God.
When the Most Holy Virgin reached the age of three, the holy parents decided to fulfill their vow. They gathered together their relatives and acquaintances, and dressed the All-Pure Virgin in Her finest clothes. Singing sacred songs and with lighted candles in their hands, virgins escorted Her to the Temple (Ps. 44/45:14-15). There the High Priest and several priests met the handmaiden of God. In the Temple, fifteen high steps led to the sanctuary, which only the priests and High Priest could enter. (Because they recited a Psalm on each step, Psalms 119/120-133/134 are called “Psalms of Ascent.”) The child Mary, so it seemed, could not make it up this stairway. But just as they placed Her on the first step, strengthened by the power of God, She quickly went up the remaining steps and ascended to the highest one. Then the High Priest, through inspiration from above, led the Most Holy Virgin into the Holy of Holies, where only the High Priest entered once a year to offer a purifying sacrifice of blood. Therefore, all those present in the Temple were astonished at this most unusual occurrence.
After entrusting their child to the Heavenly Father, Joachim and Anna returned home. The All-Holy Virgin remained in the quarters for virgins near the Temple. According to the testimony of Holy Scripture (Exodus 38; 1 Kings 1: 28; Luke 2: 37), and also the historian Josephus Flavius, there were many living quarters around the Temple, in which those who were dedicated to the service of God dwelt.
The earthly life of the Most Holy Theotokos from Her infancy until She was taken up to Heaven is shrouded in deep mystery. Her life at the Jerusalem Temple was also a secret. “If anyone were to ask me,” said Saint Jerome, “how the Most Holy Virgin spent the time of Her youth, I would answer that that is known to God Himself and the Archangel Gabriel, Her constant guardian.”
But there are accounts in Church Tradition, that during the All-Pure Virgin’s stay at the Temple, She grew up in a community of pious virgins, diligently read the Holy Scripture, occupied Herself with handicrafts, prayed constantly, and grew in love for God. From ancient times, the Church has celebrated the Feast of the Entry of the Most Holy Theotokos into the Temple. Indications that the Feast was observed in the first centuries of Christianity are found in the traditions of Palestinian Christians, which say that the holy Empress Helen (May 21) built a church in honor of the Entry of the Most Holy Theotokos into the Temple.
Saint Gregory of Nyssa, in the fourth century, also mentions this Feast. In the eighth century Saints Germanus and Tarasius, Patriarchs of Constantinople, delivered sermons on the Feast of the Entry.
The Feast of the Entry of the Most Holy Theotokos into the Temple foretells God’s blessing for the human race, the preaching of salvation, the promise of the coming of Christ.
Glory to Jesus Christ!
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A married couple with 2 small children is transitioning from Ukraine to Madison and need our help. Right now, basic kitchenware like pots, pans, glasses, flatware, and the like are the pressing needs. If you can donate any of these things or help financially, please contact Judith or me directly.
Working around the UW home game schedule, I'd like to offer bible study on the Christmas Gospel. We'll meet before Vespers on Saturday (11/19, 12/3, and 12/10) from 3:00-4:15. The basic format will be a 45 minute talk on the text with 30 minutes for questions and discussion.
Looking a bit further ahead, I'll be at the Seminary December 15-17.
Last of all, the pre-Christmas Fast begins this Tuesday, November 15.
Newest Ukrainian Orthodox Word
This Week at Ss Cyril & Methodius
Tuesday, November 15
- Christmas Fast Begins Today
- 5:00 PM: Vespers
Wednesday, November 16 (Apostle Matthew)
- 7:00 AM: Divine Liturgy
- 11:00 AM- 3:00 PM: Office Hours
Thursday, November 17
- 1:00-3:00 PM: Office Hours/Confessions
- 6:00 PM: OCF
Saturday, November 19
- 3:00 PM: Bible Study (Matthew 2:1-23: The Magi and the Star)
- 4:30 PM: Confessions
- 5:00 PM: Vespers
- 6:00 PM: Confessions
Sunday, November 20
- 9:00 AM: Hours/Pre-Communion Prayers
- 9:30 AM: Divine Liturgy
Monday, November 21 (Presentation of the Mother of God)
- 9:00 AM: Divine Liturgy
- 6:30 PM: Ecumenical Thanksgiving Service (see below for more information and to volunteer)
Wednesday, November 23
- 4:00 PM- 6:30 PM: Office Hours
- 7:00 PM: Akathist of Thanksgiving
Saturday, November 26 (UW Home Game)
- 4:00 PM: Confessions [canceled]
- 5:00 PM: Vespers [canceled]
- 6:00 PM: Confessions [canceled]
Sunday, November 27
- 9:00 AM: Hours/Pre-Communion Prayers
- 9:30 AM: Divine Liturgy
Thanks be to God! Churches throughout the Madison area will be hosting an ecumenical Thanksgiving service on Monday evening November 21st at 6:30 PM at Queen of Peace Church on Mineral Point Rd.
With many different churches involved, this event offers not only a chance to express our thanks to God for our many blessings but also provides an opportunity to demonstrate unity and encouragement for our entire community.
If you are available to help with greeting/ushering, like to smile, and can arrive by 5:51, please contact me by 11/17. The hope is to have one or two volunteers per congregation.
If you are interested in helping with hospitality by bringing a snack plate to supplement what Queen of Peace will provide, please contact me. It will need to be delivered to the church by 6:15 on the 21st.
Nonperishable items and cash contributions will be collected for area food pantries. Everyone is invited and encouraged to attend this service and the reception following.
Hymns After the Small Entrance
Tone 6 Troparion (Resurrection)
The Angelic Powers were at Thy tomb; the guards became as dead men. Mary stood by Thy grave, seeking Thy most pure body. Thou didst capture hell not being tempted by it. Thou didst come to the Virgin, granting life. O Lord, Who didst rise from the dead,//glory to Thee.
Tone 4 Troparion (Forefeast)
Today Anna bequeaths joy to all instead of sorrow, by bringing forth her fruit, the only ever-Virgin. In fulfillment of her vow, today with joy she brings to the temple of the Lord//the true temple and pure Mother of God the Word.
Tone 4 Troparion (Sts. Gregory and Proclus)
The twofold lamps of divine gifts, Proclus, shepherd of New Rome, and Gregory, scion of Decapolis, guide us by the light of grace as divinely-inspired fathers. Let us draw near and eagerly beseech them,//that we may receive forgiveness and salvation of our souls!
Tone 6 Kontakion (Resurrection)
When Christ God, the Giver of Life, raised all of the dead from the valleys of misery with His mighty hand,He bestowed resurrection on the human race.//He is the Savior of all, the Resurrection, the Life, and the God of all.
Tone 3 Kontakion (St. Gregory)
The Church knows thee to be a brilliant sun enlightening all with the rays of healing and the beauty of virtue. Therefore, as we celebrate thine honored memory, We glorify thy struggles,//ever-blest and all-wise Father Gregory.
Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.
Tone 4 Kontakion (Forefeast)
Today the universe is filled with joy at the glorious feast of the Mother of God,//and cries out: “She is the heavenly tabernacle.”
Now and ever, and unto ages of ages. Amen.
Tone 6 Theotokion
O protection of Christians that cannot be put to shame, mediation unto the Creator most constant, O despise not the suppliant voices of those who have sinned; but be thou quick, O good one, to come unto our aid, who in faith cry unto thee: Hasten to intercession, and speed thou to make supplication, thou who dost ever protect, O Theotokos, them that honor thee.
Epistle: Ephesians 2:4-10
Brethren, God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.
Gospel: Luke 12:16-21
Then He spoke a parable to them, saying: “The ground of a certain rich man yielded plentifully. And he thought within himself, saying, ‘What shall I do, since I have no room to store my crops?’ So he said, ‘I will do this: I will pull down my barns and build greater, and there I will store all my crops and my goods. And I will say to my soul, “Soul, you have many goods laid up for many years; take your ease; eat, drink, and be merry.” ’ But God said to him, ‘Fool! This night your soul will be required of you; then whose will those things be which you have provided?’
“So is he who lays up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.”
Praise the Lord from the heavens, praise Him in the highest!
Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia!
By the age of 25, about 60% of those baptized as infants will no longer consider themselves members of the Orthodox Church. A parish on a university campus is an important witness not only to the surrounding community but also to high school age and younger parishioner. Establishing a parish on the campus of the University of Wisconsin-Madison helps remind young people that graduating high school doesn't mean "graduating" from the Church. Please consider joining those who have committed their time, treasure and talent in establishing an Orthodox community on the Isthmus. Help us reach your children and grandchildren with the Gospel of Jesus Christ.