The Week Leading Up to… Sunday, February 2, 2014

Schedule for This Week

Wednesday, January 29, 5:30 pm: Compline, followed by Bible Study

Saturday, February 1, 5:00 pm: Vespers (opportunity for Confession following)

Sunday, February 2, 9:00 am: Orthros (Reader’s Service)

                                          10:00 am: Divine Liturgy

The Annual Parish Meeting will be following this Sunday’s Divine Liturgy.

The Meeting (Presentation) of Our Lord Jesus Christ in the Temple

The Presentation of Our Lord by Rublev

Sunday Resurrection Hymn in Tone 7: Click here to listen, here for sheet music

Thou didst shatter death by Thy cross.
Thou didst open paradise to the thief,
Thou didst turn the sadness of the ointment bearing women into joy,
and didst bid thine apostles proclaim a warning
that Thou hast risen O Christ
granting to the world the great mercy.

Apolytikion of the Presentation of Christ in Tone One

Rejoice, O Virgin Theotokos, full of grace, for from thee arose the Sun of justice, Christ our God, lighting those who are in darkness. Rejoice and be glad, O righteous elder, carrying in thine arms the Deliverer of our souls, Who granteth us Resurrection.

Kontakion of the Presentation of Christ in Tone One

Thou, O Christ God, Who by Thy Birth, didst sanctify the Virgin’s womb, and, as is meet, didst bless Simeon’s arms, and didst also come to save us; preserve Thy fold in wars, and confirm them whom Thou didst love, for Thou alone art the Lover of mankind. (click here to listen, here for sheet music)

THE EPISTLE

My soul doth magnify the Lord, and my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Savior.

For He hath regarded the humility of His servant.

The Reading from the Epistle of St. Paul to the Hebrews. (7:17-17)

Brethren, it is beyond dispute that the inferior is blessed by the superior. Here tithes are received by mortal men; there, by one of whom it is testified that he lives. One might even say that Levi himself, who receives tithes, paid tithes through Abraham, for he was still in the loins of his ancestor when Melchizedek met him. Now if perfection had been attainable through the Levitical priesthood (for under it the people received the law), what further need would there have been for another priest to arise after the order of Melchizedek, rather than one named after the order of Aaron? For when there is a change in the priesthood, there is necessarily a change in the law as well. For the one of whom these things are spoken belonged to another tribe, from which no one has ever served at the altar. For it is evident that our Lord was descended from Judah, and in connection with that tribe Moses said nothing about priests. This becomes even more evident when another priest arises in the likeness of Melchizedek, who has become a priest, not according to a legal requirement concerning bodily descent but by the power of an indestructible life. For it is witnessed of him, “Thou art a priest forever, after the order of Melchizedek.”

THE GOSPEL

The Reading from the Holy Gospel according to St. Luke. (2:22-40)

In those days, the parents of Jesus brought Him up to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord (as it is written in the law of the Lord, “Every male that opens the womb shall be called holy to the Lord”), and to offer a sacrifice according to what is said in the law of the Lord, “a pair of turtledoves, or two young pigeons.” Now there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon, and this man was righteous and devout, looking for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. And it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he should not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. And inspired by the Spirit he came into the Temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him according to the custom of the law, he took Him up in his arms and blessed God and said, “Lord, now lettest thou Thy servant depart in peace, according to Thy word; for mine eyes have seen Thy salvation, which Thou hast prepared in the presence of all peoples, a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and for glory to Thy people Israel.” And His father and his mother marveled at what was said about Him; and Simeon blessed them and said to Mary His mother, “Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising of many in Israel, and for a sign that is spoken against (and a sword will pierce through your own soul also), that thoughts out of many hearts may be revealed.” And there was a prophetess, Anna, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher; she was of a great age, having lived with her husband seven years from her virginity, and as a widow until she was eighty-four. She did not depart from the temple, worshiping with fasting and prayer night and day. And coming up at that very hour she gave thanks to God, and spoke of Him to all who were looking for the redemption of Jerusalem. And when they had performed everything according to the law of the Lord, they returned into Galilee, to their own city, Nazareth. And the child grew and became strong, filled with wisdom; and the favor of God was upon Him.

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Quote for the Week

“The child Jesus born within us advances by different ways in those who receive Him in wisdom, in age, and in grace. He is not the same in every person, but is present according to the measure of the person receiving Him. He comes either as an infant, or a child advancing in age, or as one fully grown after the example of the cluster. Christ is never seen with the same form upon the vine, but He changes His form with time — now budding, now blossoming, now mature, now ripe and finally as wine. Thus the vine holds out a promise with its fruit. It is not yet ripe for wine, but it awaits maturity. Meanwhile it does not lack any delight, for it gladdens our sense of smell instead of our taste with its expectation of the future; by its fragrance of hope it sweetens the soul’s senses. A faith firm in a grace we hope for becomes a delight for us who wait in patience.”

– St. Gregory of Nyssa, Commentary on the Song of Songs

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