SparkPeople Orthodox Christian Transformations Team Messageboard http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/groups_individual.asp?gid=14542 For all interested in Eastern Orthodox Christianity. "Acquire the Spirit of Peace, and thousands around you will be saved" (~St Seraphim of Sarov). Welcome! SparkPeople Orthodox Christian Transformations Team Messageboard http://www.sparkpeople.com/assets/nav/nav_logo_v3.gif http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/groups_individual.asp?gid=14542 Hello http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=-1x14542x58273835 Hello All. I have been with the Antioch church " Saint Basil" for 4 years now and have been blessed to find it. I attend with my son who has autism. He helps with the acolytes on Sunday, which makes me proud. I am looking forward to losing some weight, I have hit a plateau and need a boost. Thu, 19 Jun 2014 20:02:36 EST Pray for Meriam Ibrahim http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=27022x14542x58205713 I'm sure most of you have heard of this woman in Sudan. She was born to a Muslim father and an Orthodox Christian mother. The father left, so the mother raised her as a Christian. She married a Christian man, who has since become a US citizen. Sudan considers her Muslim because that's what her father was. They do not recognize a marriage between a Muslim and a Christian, so they have accused her of adultery, the penalty for which is 100 lashes. She was pregnant, so they were waiting unt... Fri, 13 Jun 2014 11:08:27 EST How a Syrian Christian woman survived Homs http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x58185705 This Orthodox Christian woman survived 700 days of blockade in the city of Homs in Syria. By the end she was just eating boiled greens that she found growing wild. Could we survive a siege as well as she? Lord have mercy! <BR> <BR> <link>m.apnews.com/ap/db_289563/contentdet<BR>ail.htm?contentguid=RYO2ZMIe </link> Wed, 11 Jun 2014 16:30:09 EST Fr. Seraphim Rose on Calling Someone a “Heretic” http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x58182829 "The word “heretic” comes from the Greek word haireisthai, meaning “to choose.” Strictly speaking, a “heretic” is someone who was a right-believing member of the Church but willfully chose a belief in contradiction to the universal faith of the Church. <BR> <BR> In other words, being a “heretic” requires a deliberate rejection of the truth. <BR> <BR> Yet, in common parlance, the word “heretic” is used much more liberally, especially in online polemics. Is it really accurate or consonant wit... Wed, 11 Jun 2014 11:10:55 EST Blessed Feast! Pentecost! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x58182719 "The Holy Spirit has descended!" <BR> "From Heaven to Earth!" <BR> <BR> (I didn't get to post on Ascension, but at Ascension my priest says: <BR> "Christ is ascended!" <BR> and we say: <BR> "From Earth to Heaven!") Wed, 11 Jun 2014 11:03:09 EST Anybody using Fitbit or other activity tracker? http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=7179x14542x58182645 I'm thinking of getting a Fitbit - I looked at the Spark version but it doesn't have a sleep tracker - in addition to tracking my steps, I would like to see what it says about my sleep quality, since my husband keeps complaining about my snoring. Hopefully as I lose weight my snoring issues will go away. <BR> <BR> I used to try to use a pedometer, but they were never very accurate. I counted out 50 steps and compared it with the pedometer and it was always wrong. It also counted as step... Wed, 11 Jun 2014 10:57:53 EST Recent info regarding the kidnapped Syrian Bishops http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x58182495 <link>www.pravmir.com/two-bishops-kidnappe<BR>d-syria-held-captive-isil-good-health/ </link> Wed, 11 Jun 2014 10:45:15 EST Just returned from vacation http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x58182084 Hi everyone - I've been gone for a while, vacationing. We had a wonderful time visiting grandkids, friends, and participating in my husband's 45th reunion. We also had an overnight stay at the Holy Dormition Monastery in Rives Junction, MI <BR> <link>www.dormitionmonastery.org/ </link> <BR> and attended a Wednesday morning Liturgy there. <BR> <BR> It's good to be home, though temporarily -- I don't know how much I will post now through the month of July. My daughter is due to give bir... Wed, 11 Jun 2014 10:08:54 EST Prayers needed for Helen and Sandra http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=27022x14542x58162244 Please pray for the handmaidens of God Helen and Sandra. Both lovely ladies are mothers of friends of mine. Helen is being operated on tomorrow for a brain tumor which she has had for some time but was considered inoperable. Now they must operate. Sandra is being operated on today for a brain tumor that was just discovered yesterday. Mon, 9 Jun 2014 14:04:50 EST Pentecost Marathon! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x58119244 My parish has quite the Sunday planned this week: <BR> <BR> Matins, followed by the chrismation of a family of 5, followed by the liturgy, followed by kneeling prayers, followed by a baby shower/celebration of the chrismations! We're calling it the Pentecost Marathon, but I am pretty excited. :) <BR> <BR> Do your churches normally do kneeling vespers or kneeling prayers? Thu, 5 Jun 2014 12:34:46 EST Today I am grateful for ... http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x57810930 I have had a hard year here in Greece (we are on a one year sabbatical right now) and still have 3 months before returning to Missouri. I am trying to focus on the good things in my life so I am going to start posting them here. Please join me. <BR> <BR> Today: I am grateful for my health and my ability to go on walks outside. Fri, 9 May 2014 04:18:48 EST My goodness! What happened to our page! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x57772109 I haven't been online much -- I just got back on and everything's changed! I wish they would stop changing things around! Mon, 5 May 2014 22:17:31 EST A Holy Fire experience! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x57591254 My daughter forwarded to me the following first person account: <BR> <BR> <BR> "Christ is Risen!! Indeed He is Risen!!! <BR> <BR> I don't know much about fire. All I know is that fire is a dangerous element and I can potentially get hurt while exposed to it, so I should follow common instructions and keep a safe distance. That was my perception of God too. And it is with that knowledge that I went to Jerusalem yesterday morning to see the Descent of the Holy Fire. <BR> <BR> I woke up at 3... Mon, 21 Apr 2014 12:18:49 EST Christ is Risen! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x57591207 Indeed He is Risen! <BR> <BR> A blessed feast and a joyous bright week to all! Mon, 21 Apr 2014 12:14:29 EST Christos Anesti! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x57575444 Christos Anesti! Christ has risen! Sun, 20 Apr 2014 00:22:59 EST Christos Anesti! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x57575440 Christos Anesti! Christ has risen! Sun, 20 Apr 2014 00:22:49 EST New http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=-1x14542x57513535 I should probably be offline during Holy Week, but here I am anyway. :) Thank you to everyone who sent me nice messages when I joined the team. I'm so excited there's an Orthodox group! I've been Orthodox for 7 years, but I've missed a lot of church because of depression, anxiety, and strange physical problems. But I've got a psychiatrist (and by virtue of that more meds than I can shake a stick at), a good therapist, and more energy from being here, so I hope to make a few services this week... Mon, 14 Apr 2014 19:57:34 EST Chrismation! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=27022x14542x57486242 My husband Charles and I have our Chrismations tomorrow (Palm Sunday). Please pray for our continued growth as Orthodox Christians. Thank you! Sat, 12 Apr 2014 14:31:10 EST Memory Eternal, Metropolitan Philip http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x57195135 Metropolitan Philip, head of the North American Antiochian Archdiocese passed away yesterday evening: <BR> <BR> <link>www.antiochian.org/memory-eternal-hi<BR>s-eminence-metropolitan-philip </link> <BR> <BR> 6 Minute Podcast interview - Ancient Faith Radio and Fr. Thomas Zain: "We talk with Fr. Thomas Zain, Vicar General of the Antiochian Archdiocese of North America just 2 hours after the falling asleep of our beloved Metropolitan Philip, Archbishop of New York and Metropolitan of All N... Thu, 20 Mar 2014 09:19:54 EST Blessed Feast! St. Patrick of Ireland! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x57163535 Saint Patrick, the Apostle of the Irish, was seized from his native Britain by Irish marauders when he was sixteen years old. Though the son of a deacon and a grandson of a priest, it was not until his captivity that he sought out the Lord with his whole heart. In his Confession, the testament he wrote towards the end of his life, he says, "After I came to Ireland - every day I had to tend sheep, and many times a day I prayed - the love of God and His fear came to me more and more, and my fai... Mon, 17 Mar 2014 18:14:22 EST Glory to God! Then Syrian nuns have been freed! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x57068182 See: <link>www.cnn.com/2014/03/09/world/meast/s<BR>yria-nuns-freed/index.html </link> <BR> <BR> And here is another link: <link>rt.com/news/syria-nuns-release-maalo<BR>ula-782/ </link> Sun, 9 Mar 2014 22:45:39 EST Blessed Feast! Sts. Simeon & Anna 2/3 http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x56619630 On February 3, in the Holy Orthodox Church, we commemorate the Synaxis of the Holy and Righteous Simeon the God-receiver. <BR> <BR> This Simeon was chosen, in the time of the Egyptian Pharaoh Ptolemy Philadelphus (285-246 B.C.), as one of the famous Seventy to whom was committed the task of translating the Bible from the Hebrew into Greek. Simeon worked conscientiously, but when, translating the Prophet Isaiah, he came to the prophecy: 'Behold, a virgin shall conceive and bear a son', he was... Sun, 2 Feb 2014 18:26:37 EST Blessed Feast! Our Lord's Presentation 2/2 http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x56619494 THE MEETING OF OUR LORD, GOD AND SAVIOR JESUS CHRIST <BR> <BR> When the ever-virgin Mary's forty days of purification were passed, according to the Law of Moses she took her son Jesus to the Temple in Jerusalem, to dedicate him to God as her first-born son. At the temple the Lord's parents offered the sacrifice of a pair of doves (Luke 2:22-23), from which we learn that they were poor, since those who were able were required to offer a lamb. At the Temple, the Lord was met by Zacharias, fath... Sun, 2 Feb 2014 18:15:06 EST How Candlemas became Ground Hog Day http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x56619448 I know I have posted a lot of this information before but it's good to be reminded every year of the true feast on this day since the world glorifies Ground Hog Day every year! I originally wrote most of this several years ago,so the links that I list may have become inactive. I’m sure you can find other information on the web if you want to look it up. Isn’t it interesting that Candlemas is so completely forgotten that spell check doesn’t even recognize it?! <BR> <BR> HOW CANDLEMAS BECAME... Sun, 2 Feb 2014 18:11:27 EST Blessed Feast! Old Calendar Theophany! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x56428614 Blessed Feast to all Old Calendar Christians! Holy Theophany (January 19) <BR> <BR> THEOPHANY <BR> The Commemoration of <BR> Christ's Baptism in the Jordan <BR> <BR> Originally, there was just one Christian feast of the shining forth of God to the world in the human form of Jesus of Nazareth. It included the celebration of the Nativity of Christ, the adoration of the wise men, and all of the childhood events of Christ such as his circumcision and presentation in the temple, as well as his b... Sun, 19 Jan 2014 14:35:53 EST Five letter game http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x56372536 How about a game to start off the year?! <BR> <BR> Start with a word greater than five letters, for example: <BR> <BR> STRIKES <BR> <BR> Choose at least five of the letters from that work and add more letters to make another greater than five letter word: <BR> <BR> BREAKFAST <BR> <BR> So -- starting with the word BREAKFAST, go! Wed, 15 Jan 2014 09:35:29 EST Outdoor Blessing of the Water http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x56342252 Did anyone do (or are you still planning to do) and outdoor blessing of the water? We usually do that the Sunday after Theophany, so yesterday, we blessed one of the local lakes. One of our parishioners has a home on the lakeshore, and he cuts a cross shaped hole in the ice, and sets up an ice cross beside it. Then we all troop out there and our priest dips a cross on a long pole into the hole in the ice three times while we all sing/chant the prayers. We can't throw the cross into the wa... Mon, 13 Jan 2014 09:08:09 EST I'm back again http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x56342170 I'm sorry -- during Advent and the Christmas season it was hard to keep up with everything, with the extra church services, extra events connected to the season, and travel (to see our grandchildren). I'm back on Spark again -- trying to lose the extra weight I gained during this time. I hope you all had a blessed Advent, Nativity, and Theophany season -- and if you are Old Calendar, may your blessings continue throughout your twelve days of Christmas and Old Calendar Theophany (to be celeb... Mon, 13 Jan 2014 09:01:57 EST More Information on St. Thekla's Monastery, Syria http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x55854791 Please see: <BR> <link>araborthodoxy.blogspot.com/ </link> <BR> <BR> It appears the children in the orphanage have been taken to safety. The nuns have been kidnapped. Please continue to pray for them! Tue, 3 Dec 2013 18:14:13 EST What is your favorite service of the year? http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x55574155 We had a function at our church and one of the questions was What are your favorite services? Mine is Holy Thursday where we go through so many Gospels celebrating God's truth. What's yours? Sat, 9 Nov 2013 13:08:44 EST True Story about Children in church in Russia http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x55448659 Beautiful story: <BR> <link>www.pravoslavie.ru/english/65207.htm </link> Wed, 30 Oct 2013 09:48:06 EST The Protection of the Theotokos during WW 2 http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x55428887 This link has some beautiful stories about how the Theotokos helped the Greek soldiers during World War II. In gratitude for her help, the date of this feast was moved from October 1 to October 28. <BR> <BR> <link>www.johnsanidopoulos.com/2009/10/pan<BR>agia-world-war-2-and-why-we.html </link> Mon, 28 Oct 2013 19:47:49 EST Blessed Feast! Holy Protection of the Theotokos http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x55423085 October 28 <BR> <BR> Reading: <BR> <BR> The Feast of the Protection commemorates the appearance of the most holy Theotokos in the Church of Blachernae in Constantinople in the early sixth century, as recorded in the life of Saint Andrew the Fool for Christ's sake. While the multitudes of the faithful were gathered in church, Epiphanius, the friend of Saint Andrew, through the Saint's prayers, beheld the Virgin Mary above the faithful and spreading out her veil over them, signifying her unce... Mon, 28 Oct 2013 10:33:45 EST What do you think of the new START page? http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x55339587 I suppose I'll get used to it, but I wish they hadn't messed with it. It takes me longer to find our OCT spark team! Mon, 21 Oct 2013 10:29:09 EST Blessed Feast! The Apostle Luke http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x55308782 October 18 <BR> <BR> Reading: <BR> <BR> This Apostle was an Antiochean, a physician by trade, and a disciple and companion of Paul. He wrote his Gospel in Greek after Matthew and Mark, after which he wrote the Acts of the Apostles, and dedicated both works to Theophilus, who, according to some, was Governor of Achaia. He lived some eighty-six years and died in Achaia, perhaps in Patras, the capital of this district. His emblem is the calf, the third symbolical beast mentioned by Ezekiel (1:... Fri, 18 Oct 2013 12:16:47 EST Please pray for the abducted bishops http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=27022x14542x55308720 Two bishops were abducted last April and their deacon was shot and killed. One of the bishops is Metropolitan Paul (Yazigi), brother of our Antiochian Patriarch, John X. The other is the Syriac Archbishop Youhanna Ibrahim (Archbishop John). As of today, these bishops are still being held captive. Please pray for their release. The most reliable and recent news regarding these bishops is posted at: <link>www.antiochian.org/2013-abductions-b<BR>ishops </link> Fri, 18 Oct 2013 12:11:20 EST Please pray for my husband http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=27022x14542x55260894 Please pray for my husband who is battling alcoholism. Mon, 14 Oct 2013 13:20:07 EST News about St. Catherine's Monastery http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x55208910 <link>www.washingtonpost.com/world/middle_<BR>east/an-ancient-monastery-in-sinai-is-<BR>isolated-again/2013/10/04/ef426cc8-2ad<BR>4-11e3-b141-298f46539716_story.html </link> Wed, 9 Oct 2013 23:13:28 EST Prayer Request from Mother Paraskeva http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=27022x14542x55141306 We received the following email, forwarded from our priest, about the situation in the Middle East - If anyone would like this as an email to forward to friends, email me and I will forward it to you. My email address is rjbaum53@gmail.com <BR> ~Ruth Ann <BR> <BR> Please pray for those suffering as described in Mother Paraskeva's message below. Mother Paraskeva is a nun at St. Barbara's Monastery of the Orthodox Church of America in Santa Paula, California. <BR> <BR> Date: Wed, 2 Oct 2... Fri, 4 Oct 2013 15:23:52 EST Prayers for Charles http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=27022x14542x55113928 Hey, my husband and I are both fighting an infection. He has Agent Orange poisoning, which complicates any infection he gets. His name is Charles, and my name is Kathleen. Please pray for us. Thank you! Wed, 2 Oct 2013 12:52:53 EST Pray for the people of Syria http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=27022x14542x55111634 I'm just using this subject as an example of a prayer request thread. I think everyone knows to pray for the Syrian people. <BR> <BR> I can't imagine living under the conditions our Syrian brothers and sisters have to endure. May God have mercy! And may He strengthen us if such a time of persecution comes to the United States and the rest of the western world. Wed, 2 Oct 2013 09:55:34 EST New Forum http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=27022x14542x55111588 Yes, this is a new forum. Please list your prayer requests here. Each prayer request should be written up as a new topic. Then you can update us on that particular prayer request thread as to how things are working out for you. I won't make a "Prayer Request sticky topic" because I think most people would just ignore it. You need to start a separate thread for each prayer request. <BR> <BR> This forum can also contain topics about prayer, book recommendations on prayer, examples of speci... Wed, 2 Oct 2013 09:52:07 EST The Church at the Bottom of the World! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x55106009 Cool! <BR> <link>www.slate.com/blogs/atlas_obscura/20<BR>13/09/18/getting_married_at_the_bottom<BR>_of_the_world_trinity_church_in_antarc<BR>tica.html </link> Tue, 1 Oct 2013 21:36:43 EST A Syrian Nun Speaks http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x55002077 For a deeper understanding of the Syrian situation from the point of view of a nun who lives there see: <BR> <link>www.morningoffering.blogspot.com/201<BR>3/09/syrian-based-nun-backs-beleaguere<BR>d.html </link> <BR> <BR> Mon, 23 Sep 2013 08:29:10 EST How do you celebrate names days? http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x54900814 My sons feast day is today, September 1st OS (Symeon the Stylite)and its also the first day of the church new year. We usually have a celebratory dinner and a cake. Now that I started spark I am looking for ideas that don't focus on food so much. I know that kind of goes against the grain of orthodoxy celebrations because we go through the cycle of fasting and feasting but my crew are all on the heavy side. Does anyone celebrate their families names days in other ways? Sat, 14 Sep 2013 15:39:22 EST Akathist of Thanksgiving CD http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x54794849 Dear Antiochia, <BR> <BR> I was looking around the forum and I discovered you are from St. Ignatius parish in Madison, Wisconsin. Are you the parish that put out my favorite CD of all time, The Akathist of Thanksgiving? And might you be one of the singers? <em>43</em> <BR> <BR> I have given copies of that CD to so many people over the years. Thank you to your parish for such a wonderful work! <BR> <BR> -Xenia Thu, 5 Sep 2013 18:18:48 EST Blessed Feast! Holy Dormition! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x54521145 Tomorrow, August 15, new calendar Christians celebrate the Dormition (the "Falling Asleep" ) or death of the Virgin Mary. As Orthodox, we believe that she truly died and her soul entered heaven, and her Son, Jesus, resurrected her body sometime during the three days following her death, and she is in heaven with Him in her glorified body. Old Calendar Christians will celebrate this feast 13 days later on August 28. <BR> <BR> I copied the following information about today's feast from: <... Wed, 14 Aug 2013 12:07:14 EST Blessed Feast of Holy Transfig uration! (Aug 6 ) http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x54413511 August 6 for New Calendar Christians and August 19th for Old Calendar Christians is the feast of Holy Transfiguration. <BR> <BR> Here is the Kontakian for the Feast of the Transfiguration of our Lord - I think the words are especially meaningful: <BR> <BR> "Thou wast transfigured on the mount <BR> and Thy disciples, in so far as they were able, <BR> beheld Thy glory, O Christ our God; <BR> So that when they should see Thee crucified, <BR> they would remember that Thy suffering was voluntary... Mon, 5 Aug 2013 23:50:05 EST Holy Dormition Fast & Feast (Aug 1 - 15 - new cal) http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x54381444 Some information on this season from my church's newsletter: <BR> <BR> HOLY DORMITION OF THE THEOTOKOS <BR> As the Church’s annual liturgical cycle comes to a close, having remembered and celebrated all the major events of the life of our Lord, we are now asked to remember and honor the death of Jesus’ mother, the Theotokos and ever-virgin Mary. August 15 marks the death of the one whom the Church labels as “More spacious than the heavens” because the infinite, limitless God allowed Himself ... Sat, 3 Aug 2013 13:42:02 EST WOW! Welcome to all the new members! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=-1x14542x54380671 Here I turn my back for 3 months, and all of a sudden we have a whole bunch of new members! <BR> <BR> <em>235</em> <em>213</em> <em>381</em> <em>220</em> <em>223</em> <em>104</em> <BR> <BR> So glad you all have joined us! Please feel free to post on any thread or start a new topic! <BR> <BR> God bless you all! <BR> ~Ruth Ann <BR> Sat, 3 Aug 2013 12:35:04 EST Sorry for the long absence,.. http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x54380518 Hi folks, Blessed Dormition Fast to you and sorry for the long absence. Life happens! <BR> <BR> A week after Pascha we were blessed to join a week-and-a-half-long Orthodox Tour of the Holy Land -- I still need to finish getting my pictures in order! We were led by a Russian priest who seemed to think the that the more sites we could visit, the better. We were touring about 12 hours a day more or less. We went to Galilee first , we visited the mount of Transfiguration, then we went thr... Sat, 3 Aug 2013 12:20:18 EST Christos Anesti! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x53227942 Christos Anesti! Christ has risen! <BR> <BR> Hello my fellow orthodox Christians. If you know Christ is risen in another language, please share it with us! <BR> <BR> Sun, 5 May 2013 11:23:15 EST Kali Anastasi! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x53217936 Kali Anastasi! Sat, 4 May 2013 14:20:08 EST Pascha baskets http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x53091248 What do you put in your Pascha basket? <BR> <BR> <BR> <BR> I am of Russian descent so here is what I put in mine: smoked and fresh kielbasi, a pork roast, cheddar cheese, an Irish/Scottish/English cheese ( my hubby's background), pickled egges, horseradish. an egg cheese and cheese Pascha and butter. Wed, 24 Apr 2013 10:13:02 EST Blessed Feast! Annunciation (New Calendar) http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x52688388 Today, March 25, New Calendar Orthodox Christians celebrate the Feast of the Annunciation, when Gabriel asked Mary if she would bear the Christ child. Our Old Calendar brothers and sisters will celebrate this feast on April 7. We are allowed wine, oil, and fish for this celebration, and for today the colors at church on the altar cloths and vestments are changed from the Lenten purple to either gold or, if the priest has them, blue for the Theotokos. <BR> <BR> It is because of this feast t... Mon, 25 Mar 2013 15:54:10 EST What is YOUR Lenten fasting tradition? http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x52588947 Different jurisdictions within Orthodox Christianity have slightly different guidelines for fasting during Lent. Please share your tradition with us! Mon, 18 Mar 2013 14:10:29 EST Preparing for Great Lent http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x52381353 I am curious what plans people have for Great Lent. I always start stressing at this time about fasting (especially how to satisfy my children and my husband who hates eating anything without olive oil) and about my tendency to "feast on fasting foods." <BR> <BR> On the nonfood front, I always try to find a book to read or something special to do during lent. I will post back in with my plans. <BR> <BR> Suzanne Mon, 4 Mar 2013 10:40:46 EST Kind of busy right now... http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x52121502 Sorry I haven't been on much -- a young family from our church with a newborn and a child from a previous marriage, are in the process of moving to a new house, but their closing was delayed, so they've moved in with us for the rest of the month. The 10 year old from the previous marriage is being baptized this Sunday. The grandparents are coming into town and I've got cooking and cleaning to do -- in addition to preparing my church school lesson for my preschool class this weekend... so m... Thu, 14 Feb 2013 10:06:56 EST Blessed Feast! St. Valentine's Day! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x52121310 Yes, it turns out there really was a St. Valentinus. <BR> <BR> Here is his story as told by Fr. John Bockman: <BR> <BR> The Saint Valentine legend is one that strikes this writer as possessing at least a few grains of truth. It is easy to appreciate how the events described could have taken place. Valentinus, the hero of the legend, lived in the time of Claudius Caesar, Emperor of Rome in the second century a.d. Claudius had ordered the entire Roman population to worship twelve pagan gods, ... Thu, 14 Feb 2013 09:54:19 EST Orthodox Ebooks? http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x51988234 I've done a very small amount of looking for the Fathers in eBook form with no luck. Does anyone know of a place where Orthodox eBooks can be found? Tue, 5 Feb 2013 09:55:44 EST Blessed Feast! Meeting of our Lord 2/2 (New Cal) http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x51941270 THE MEETING OF OUR LORD, GOD AND SAVIOR JESUS CHRIST <BR> <BR> When the ever-virgin Mary's forty days of purification were passed, according to the Law of Moses she took her son Jesus to the Temple in Jerusalem, to dedicate him to God as her first-born son. At the temple the Lord's parents offered the sacrifice of a pair of doves (Luke 2:22-23), from which we learn that they were poor, since those who were able were required to offer a lamb. At the Temple, the Lord was met by Zacharias, fath... Sat, 2 Feb 2013 09:26:02 EST Beautiful blog post about the role of Mary http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x51930855 Here is a beautiful blog post about the role of Mary in our faith: <BR> <link>orthodox-apologetics.blogspot.com/20<BR>10/07/mary-according-to-bible.html </link> Fri, 1 Feb 2013 15:03:37 EST Beautiful blog post about kids in church http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x51893108 Although written by a Roman Catholic mom, I think this also applies to our Orthodox families and churches: <BR> <link>carrotsformichaelmas.com/2013/01/14/<BR>how-my-kids-didnt-ruin-mass/ </link> Wed, 30 Jan 2013 09:10:52 EST How Candlemas Became Groundhog day http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x51879213 I know I have posted a lot of this information before but it's good to be reminded every year of the true feast on this day since the world glorifies Ground Hog Day every year! I originally wrote most of this several years ago,so the links that I list may have become inactive. I’m sure you can find other information on the web if you want to look it up. Isn’t it interesting that Candlemas is so completely forgotten that spell check doesn’t even recognize it?! <BR> <BR> HOW CANDLEMAS BECAME... Tue, 29 Jan 2013 11:17:54 EST Sorry, I've been AWOL http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x51870514 I guess the winter's getting to me -- I just didn't feel like posting. Thank you all for carrying on! Mon, 28 Jan 2013 20:55:08 EST Hello! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=-1x14542x51854243 Again, I suppose. Ages ago I was on SparkPeople, and disappeared for so long I have forgotten my old login name. <BR> <BR> A little about myself: I'm in the Midwest but longing to go back to the South, I left college at 19 to get married and thanks in part to my husband's encouragement I'm taking classes again, and my husband and I have been married for 6 years and have not yet driven each other crazy. I work at a local library, and plan on getting a degree in Library Science, and right now... Sun, 27 Jan 2013 21:43:22 EST Praying for a stranger http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x51563555 I work for a non-profit that collects clothes and household item donations, and yesterday I called a gentleman on our list who stated that his wife is in the hospital and would I pray for her (my workplace is not a religious organization). He had a notable accent (Eastern European) and had to repeat her name 3 times before I understood that it is Alexa. It really struck me. We get the occasional God bless you or some such, but that is the first time someone asked that I pray. I told him I wou... Wed, 9 Jan 2013 23:05:59 EST Blessed Feast! Old Calendar Nativity! 1/7 http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x51516503 A blessed feast to all of our members who celebrate Christmas on the Old Calendar! <BR> <BR> If any of you have the time to write, we would love to read of your Christmas Traditions. Also, how do you feel about celebrating Christmas after most of the country has moved on (Stores are already decorating for Valentine's Day!). Does this help you emphasize the spiritual aspect of the feast more? <BR> <BR> Christ is born! Glorify Him! <BR> <em>445</em> <BR> ~Ruth Ann Mon, 7 Jan 2013 09:34:00 EST Blessed Feast! Holy Theophany (New Cal) 1/6 http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x51511457 Today is Holy Theophany for New Calendar Christians. It is also more commonly known in the Western Church (Catholics & Protestants) as Epiphany. Orthodox sometimes call it that too. But in the West it is celebrating a different event than in the East. <BR> <BR> To Western Christians (Catholics and Protestants), Epiphany is when the wise men came to worship baby Jesus. "Epiphany" means "a new idea," and the new idea was that Gentiles would worship Jesus, the promised Jewish messiah. <BR> <BR... Sun, 6 Jan 2013 23:28:59 EST The Origin of the Feast of Christmas http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x51311107 by Very Rev. Fr. Antony Bassoline <BR> <BR> "The celebration of the birth of Christ has become the most obvious religious-based public festival of American life. Its arrival in December is prepared for months in advance. It is the one event which generates the most anticipation and to which the most tradition and custom have attached themselves. Individual homes and whole cities dress up for Christmas. In popular sentiment, it has eclipsed the greater feast of the Resurrection, and has compl... Sun, 23 Dec 2012 23:03:04 EST Blessed Feast! St. John of Kronstadt http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x51275615 Our righteous father John of Kronstadt, born October 19, 1829, in Sura – died December 20, 1908, in Kronstadt) was an archpriest of the Russian Orthodox Church. <BR> <BR> He was born as Ivan Ilyich Sergiyev in 1829. From 1855, he served as a priest in St. Andrew's cathedral in Kronstadt. Here, he greatly committed himself to charity, especially for those who were remote from the church, and traveled extensively throughout the Russian empire. He was a member of the right extremist movement So... Thu, 20 Dec 2012 11:56:45 EST Blessed Feast! St. Ignatius of Antioch http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x51275563 The feast of St. Ignatius, bishop of Antioch is celebrated on Dec. 20 for new calendar -- Jan 2 for old calendar. <BR> <BR> Here is information from <BR> <link>www.abbamoses.com/months/december.ht<BR>ml </link> <BR> <BR> December 20 <BR> Beginning of the Forefeast of the Nativity of Christ <BR> Holy Hieromartyr Ignatius the God-bearer, Bishop of Antioch (107) <BR> There is a tradition that it was the young boy Ignatius whom Christ took upon his knee to explain to His followers that t... Thu, 20 Dec 2012 11:50:32 EST Blessed Feast! 12/13 St. Lucia of Sicily http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x51184192 Holy Virgin Maryr Lucy of Syracuse (304) <BR> During Diocletian's persecutians, the Christian maiden Lucy went with her mother on pilgrimage to the tomb of St Agatha (February 5), to pray for her mother's healing from an ailment. Saint Agatha appeared to Lucy in a dream and said 'Lucy, my sister, why do you ask from me what your own faith can obtain? Your mother is healed. You will soon be the glory of Syracuse as I am of Catania.' Lucy's mother was healed from that day, and Lucy determin... Wed, 12 Dec 2012 11:50:24 EST Blessed Feast! 12/13 St. Herman of Alaska http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x51184166 St Herman, Wonderworker of Alaska (1836). First Martyrs of America Juvenaly (1796) and Peter the Aleut (1815 ) <BR> St Herman, for many the Patron of North America, was born near Moscow around 1756 to a pious merchant family, and entered monastic life at the age of sixteen, at the Trinity - St Sergius Lavra near St Petersburg. While there he was attacked by a cancer of the face, but the Mother of God appeared to him and healed him completely. He was tonsured a monk in 1783 with the name o... Wed, 12 Dec 2012 11:47:45 EST Memory Eternal - Patriarch Ignatius IV http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x51095473 From the Antiochian Archdiocese website: <BR> <BR> It is with great sadness that we report that His Beatitude Ignatius IV (1920-2012), Patriarch of Antioch and All the East, fell asleep in the Lord today, December 5th, 2012, at St. George Orthodox Hospital in Beirut Lebanon, after having suffered a stroke earlier this week. There are no details yet available regarding services or the funeral, but these will be announced as soon as they are known. <BR> <BR> We ask the Lord to grant rest to t... Wed, 5 Dec 2012 10:45:13 EST What 3 things are you thankful for today? http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x51095013 Eager and Grateful Living <BR> <BR> <BR> If we make every effort to live each day with an eager and grateful heart, receiving everything that comes to us with a joyful anticipation, virtue will increase, and we will have gained the Kingdom. Without a grateful heart, virtue will remain but a distant land, and spiritual growth will be avoided. We must nurture a grateful heart. <BR> <BR> With love in Christ, <BR> Abbot Tryphon ( <link>www.morningoffering.blogspot.com/ </link> for Sunday D... Wed, 5 Dec 2012 10:10:44 EST Advent Encouragement http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x51094772 Sometimes during a long fast like Advent, or Lent, God seems to withdraw -- I feel further from Him, not closer. Here is some encouragement from Abbot Tryphon: <BR> <BR> WHEN GOD SEEMS ABSENT <BR> <BR> We all have those moments in our lives when we feel as though God is absent, even perhaps nonexistent. Those times leave us feeling alone and abandoned, as though we are lost in an empty stadium. We feel as though we are on a boat that has been set adrift without an engine, floating further ... Wed, 5 Dec 2012 09:54:47 EST Blessed Feast! 12/6 St. Nicholas of Myra! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x51094315 Today is the eve of St. Nicholas' Feast Day for new calendar Christians. (Our Old Calendar brothers and sisters will celebrate St. Nicholas Day 13 days later on December 19.) We will celebrate tonight with a Vesperal Liturgy. We also have the blessing of having our bishop here! <BR> <BR> Yes, this is the same St. Nicholas, whose story has morphed into the legend of Santa Claus. <BR> <BR> Here is his story from: <link>www.abbamoses.com/months/december.ht<BR>ml </link> <BR> <BR> Decembe... Wed, 5 Dec 2012 09:26:09 EST Happy December, Everyone! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x51057219 Sorry I wasn't on Spark much the past couple of weeks -- I had Thanksgiving at my house, and then my daughter and the grandchildren spent the following week with us. It was good having them here, but it is also good to get back to a normal routine! <BR> <BR> ~Ruth Ann Sun, 2 Dec 2012 16:32:53 EST Thanksgiving greetings from Abbot Tryphon http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x50925359 THANKSGIVING <BR> <BR> It has become the practice in America for many Orthodox Christians to gather in our temples for the celebration of the Divine Liturgy on Thanksgiving Day, for what better way to give thanks to God than to celebrate the service whose very word (Eucharist) means thanksgiving. As we gather together with friends and family, sharing in the traditional turkey dinner, we remember that this great country has set aside Thanksgiving Day, not as a day to overeat, but as a day whe... Thu, 22 Nov 2012 08:25:01 EST Blessed Feast! 11/21 Entrance of the Theotokos! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x50916212 Today is the feast of the Entrance of the Theotokos into the Temple (AKA The Presentation of the Theotokos) for new calendar Christians. Old calendar Christians will celebrate this feast on December 4. <BR> <BR> The Protoevangelium of James written down about 150 AD tells Mary's story and describes the basis of this feast. See <link>www.newadvent.org/fathers/0847.htm </link> This early Christian book is loved by both Orthodox and Roman Catholics, and nearly made it in to the New Testame... Wed, 21 Nov 2012 11:38:26 EST The Advent Fast is here! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x50857736 Advent is here for those of us on the new calendar! Old Calendar friends will begin their fast on November 18. Please check with your own church to see what the rules are for your particular jurisdiction. In the Antiochian Archdiocese, for example, we begin with a light Fast (no meat and dairy, but fish, oil, and wine are allowed until December 13th -- then 12 days of strict fasting in preparation for 12 days of feasting). I think the rules in the OCA are slightly different. Other jurisdict... Fri, 16 Nov 2012 20:54:10 EST Maintaining weight through the next couple months http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=7179x14542x50798486 How are you planning to make it through Thanksgiving, Advent fast (all those carbs!) Christmas, New Year's, and Theophany without gaining weight? I would be happy just to be able to maintain. The past couple of years I lost weight during the year only to gain it back from Thanksgiving through January. <BR> <em>29</em> <em>39</em> <BR> <BR> As a first step in maintaining my loss I will try to keep my food journal current. My next step will be to write down AHEAD OF TIME what I plan ... Mon, 12 Nov 2012 14:07:07 EST An explanation of the Theotokos as our "only hope" http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x50762589 "When Princess Leah said, "Help me, Obi Wan Kenobe; you're my only hope," she was speaking truthfully, but also poetically, since there surely must have been others in the galaxy in whom she could place her hope--Yoda, the other rebels, to say nothing of the Force. Thus, it wasn't meant to be a statement to mean that everyone else had abandoned her, but rather to emphasize the urgency of the appeal. Thus, when we say that Our Lady the Theotokos and Ever-Virgin Mary is our only hope, our one s... Fri, 9 Nov 2012 19:59:25 EST What are YOU thankful for this year? http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x50747483 I'm thankful for: <BR> my grandchildren (the youngest was born this year!) <BR> my husband's improving health <BR> my generally good health this year <BR> the fact that though our country's government may change, and the culture around us may become more immoral, God never changes and He "is our refuge and strength" (Psalm 46) <BR> <BR> ~Ruth Ann Thu, 8 Nov 2012 17:56:27 EST Story of Pregnancy, Cancer, TB, and healing http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x50747243 Here is an amazing story from Bucharest, Romania of a woman with cancer and TB, who becomes pregnant, and how God brought healing and granted a healthy child! <BR> <BR> <link>valahia.wordpress.com/2012/06/22/chi<BR>ld-bearing-helps-mother-defeat-cancer-<BR>and-tb/ </link> Thu, 8 Nov 2012 17:28:08 EST Welcome to all new members! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=-1x14542x50746539 I'm removing the sticky from the "Introduce yourself here" thread. New members are invited to start their own thread to introduce themselves. Most do anyway, so we'll just let the old "introduce yourself here" thread float. If people want to post there they still can. We look forward to hearing from anyone here that is new! <BR> <BR> <em>220</em> <em>223</em> <em>220</em> Thu, 8 Nov 2012 16:14:43 EST Blessed Feast! 11/8 Synaxis of the Holy Archangels http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x50746457 <BR> November 8 <BR> † Synaxis of the Chief Captains of the Heavenly Host, Michael and Gabriel, and of the other Bodiless Powers of Heaven <BR> The holy Scriptures, from beginning to end, are filled with mentions and descriptions of the Heavenly Host: not to believe in angels is not to believe in the Bible. In the heavens they behold the face of God, eternally hymning His glory. They are intimately involved with mankind as well: an angel is appointed guardian over every nation, and over ... Thu, 8 Nov 2012 16:05:40 EST St. Mary’s Syrian Orthodox Church destroyed http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x50734929 I assume the land of Syria is in all of our prayers. Here is an article about the destruction of an Orthodox Church there. May God have mercy and bring this civil war to a close and strengthen His people. <BR> <BR> <link>theorthodoxchurch.info/blog/news/201<BR>2/11/st-marys-syrian-orthodox-church-i<BR>n-dair-al-zor-destroyed-exclusive/ </link> <BR> <BR> (note: The date on the article is written according to European custom with the day first, then the month, then the year. So 3/11/12 ... Wed, 7 Nov 2012 19:15:35 EST Virgin Mary of Breezy Point http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x50714105 Interesting article about a statue of the Theotokos that remained unharmed after Hurricane Sandy destroyed everything around it! <BR> <link>online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052<BR>970204349404578100720297180506.html </link> Tue, 6 Nov 2012 10:14:41 EST Akathist to the Saints of North America http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x50713911 On this Election Day in the United States, here are the words to the Akathist to the Saints of North America: <BR> <link>www.stlukeorthodox.com/html/liturgic<BR>altexts/akathistamericansaints.cfm </link> <BR> <BR> <em>458</em> Tue, 6 Nov 2012 10:00:39 EST Was anyone here affected by hurricane Sandy? http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x50643523 How are those of you doing on the east coast of the USA? Are you okay? Do you have any storm stories or prayer requests? Thu, 1 Nov 2012 12:00:51 EST Blessed Feast! 11/1 Sts. Cosmos and Damien http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x50643425 BLESSED FEAST! NOV. 1 - STS. COSMOS AND DAMIEN <BR> <BR> These Saints were from Asia (that is, Asia Minor). After the death of their father, their Christ-loving mother Theodota reared them in piety and in all manner of virtue, and had them instructed in every science, especially that of medicine. This became their vocation, and they went about healing every illness and malady, bestowing healing freely on both men and beasts alike; because of this, they are called "Unmercenaries." And thus, h... Thu, 1 Nov 2012 11:54:10 EST Happy World Vegetarian Day! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=7179x14542x50209579 See: <BR> <BR> <link>www.dailyspark.com/blog.asp?post=39_<BR>meatfree_recipes_for_world_vegetarian_day </link> Tue, 2 Oct 2012 14:06:31 EST Blessed Feast! 9/30 St. Gregory the Enlightener! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x50161304 From: <link>www.abbamoses.com/months/september.h<BR>tml </link> <BR> <BR> St Gregory the Enlightener, Bishop of Armenia (325/335) <BR> He was a nobleman, related to the imperial houses of Persia and Armenia. When these two houses went to war with one another, Gregory, withdrew to Caesarea in Cappadocia, where he heard the Gospel proclaimed and came to faith in Christ. There he also married and had two sons. After his wife's death he returned to his homeland and served in the court of T... Sat, 29 Sep 2012 13:44:35 EST Blessed Feast! 9/20 - Eustathius and Family http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x50011955 Great Martyr Eustathius (Eustace) Placidas, with his family (AD 118) <BR> <BR> See their beautiful story here: <link>full-of-grace-and-truth.blogspot.com<BR>/2009/09/st-eustathius-eustace-placida<BR>s-great.html </link> <BR> <BR> (Our church men's group has taken St. Eustathius as their holy patron) Wed, 19 Sep 2012 16:00:41 EST Blessed Feast! 9/14 - Elevation of the Holy Cross http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x49931250 More information on this feast from the Orthodox Church in America: <BR> <link>www.oca.org/FSicons-churchyear.asp?S<BR>ID=4&Section=twelvefeasts </link> <BR> THE ELEVATION OF THE VENERABLE AND LIFE-CREATING CROSS OF THE LORD <BR> <BR> The pagan Roman emperors tried to completely eradicate from human memory the holy places where our Lord Jesus Christ suffered and was resurrected for mankind. The Emperor Hadrian (117-138) gave orders to cover over the ground of Golgotha and the Sepulchre o... Fri, 14 Sep 2012 10:26:27 EST 9/11 - A Remembrance http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x49894338 The following is an email, sent out by a friend of mine, James Kushiner. He is the executive editor of Touchstone Magazine, a journal of traditional Christian thought that includes articles by Protestant, Roman Catholic, and Eastern Orthodox authors about many of the basic beliefs that we have in common or can easily understand in another branch of the faith. (Here is the website for the magazine. Many of the articles are archived online: <link>touchstonemag.com/ </link> <BR> <BR> Jim... Wed, 12 Sep 2012 08:41:54 EST Blessed Feast - 9/8 Nativity of the Theotokos http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x49813466 Today, for new calendar Christians, is the eve (or forefeast) of the Birth of Mary. Tomorrow we will celebrate her birth. Old Calendar Christians will observe her nativity on 9/21. <BR> <BR> We all celebrate her miraculous birth - according to Church tradition, her parents were barren and her mother was past menopause when she (Anna) became pregnant with Mary. <BR> <BR> God had done all He possibly could to prepare Mary to be the mother of Jesus. Still she had the free will to reject Him. I... Fri, 7 Sep 2012 11:08:28 EST Blessed Feast - Miracle of the Archangel Michael! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x49802591 September 6 <BR> <BR> Reading: <BR> <BR> The feast today in honour of the Archangel Michael commemorates the great miracle he wrought when he delivered from destruction a church and holy spring named for him. The pagans, moved by malice, sought to destroy the aforesaid church and holy spring by turning the course of two rivers against them. But the Archangel appeared and, by means of the Cross and a great earthquake that shook the entire area, diverted the waters into an underground course.... Thu, 6 Sep 2012 18:20:13 EST Happy Ecclesiastical New Year! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x49720584 September 1 <BR> <BR> Reading: <BR> <BR> For the maintenance of their armed forces, the Roman emperors decreed that their subjects in every district should be taxed every year. This same decree was reissued every fifteen years, since the Roman soldiers were obliged to serve for fifteen years. At the end of each fifteen-year period, an assessment was made of what economic changes had taken place, and a new tax was decreed, which was to be paid over the span of the fifteen years. This imperia... Sat, 1 Sep 2012 10:50:28 EST The Word Became Flesh [Meat]]... http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x49720222 The following link is a science fiction story by Terry Bisson - <link>www.terrybisson.com/page6/page6.html </link> <BR> <BR> If you don't like science fiction don't read it! It is not overtly Christian, but all I could think while reading it was: <BR> John 1:14 "And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth." <BR> <BR> and I felt amazed at the goodness and humility of our Lord that He... Sat, 1 Sep 2012 10:23:55 EST Thanks for your prayers! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x49710818 My husband is home from the hospital (surgery for revision of his ostomy), and is recovering. It will take time, but I think he is healing faster then he did after the original ostomy surgery back in January. <BR> <BR> Thanks again, <BR> Ruth Ann Fri, 31 Aug 2012 16:05:10 EST Blessed Feast - Holy Dormition! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x49472331 Today, August 15, new calendar Christians celebrate the Dormition (the "Falling Asleep" ) or death of the Virgin Mary. As Orthodox, we believe that she truly died and her soul entered heaven, and her Son, Jesus, resurrected her body sometime during the three days following her death, and she is in heaven with Him in her glorified body. Old Calendar Christians will celebrate this feast 13 days later on August 28. <BR> <BR> I copied the following information about today's feast from: <lin... Wed, 15 Aug 2012 13:50:20 EST How to Gossip Tutorial http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x49383351 <link>pithlessthoughts.blogspot.com/2012/0<BR>7/in-light-of-recent-events.html </link> Thu, 9 Aug 2012 13:31:57 EST Paraklesis http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x49383315 On August 1-14 each year the Orthodox Church enters a fast period in preparation for the Feast of the Dormition of the Theotokos celebrated on August 15. We honor the Theotokos, the birth-giver of God, with a number of worship services during this fast period.Many parishes chant the Paraklesis service several times during this season. The Paraklesis is an opportunity to seek the prayers and intercessions of the Theotokos for ourselves, loved ones, and for those in need. We bring or email nam... Thu, 9 Aug 2012 13:28:16 EST Anyone here trying to do "Paleo" or "Primal?" http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=7179x14542x49367992 I've been intrigued with the Paleo diet lately, but coming up with Lenten foods on a Paleo diet is extremely difficult. Has anyone else tried to do this? <BR> <BR> My breakfasts have been either a green smoothie with avocado, or a dish of fruit (berries if possible) and a few raisins or other dried fruit, with nuts and seeds -- which are kind of borderline Paleo -- walnuts, sunflower seeds, hemp hearts, dried unsweetened coconut, almond flakes, eaten with a mixture of unsweetenened almon... Wed, 8 Aug 2012 14:29:27 EST Blessed Dormition Fast! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x49354238 Hi everyone -- I hope you are all doing well during this time when we especially remember Mary, the Theotokos! <BR> <BR> Sorry I've been AWOL for so long. My husband has been in and out of the hospital with complications with his ostomy. He will have to go in for a revision surgery at the end of the month. Meanwhile he has to be on a full liquid/ soft foods diet. Which means I'm cooking differently for him and for me. He needs eggs and cream soups, so he hasn't been able to participate ... Tue, 7 Aug 2012 17:40:38 EST Dining Out Guide http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=7179x14542x48654334 Here is a great resource that I just found on Spark: <BR> <link>www.sparkpeople.com/resource/sparkdi<BR>ning.asp </link> <BR> <em>4</em> Sat, 23 Jun 2012 11:56:24 EST Article on mortgage debt http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x48447953 Here is an interesting article on mortgage debt entitled *Escaping Debt Slavery* written by a personal friend of mine: <BR> <BR> <link>www.discover-original-christianity.i<BR>nfo/Escaping-Debt-Slavery.pdf </link> <BR> Sat, 9 Jun 2012 14:04:16 EST Blessed Fast of the Apostles! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x48445778 The 40 days of Pascha have been celebrated and completed. Holy Pentecost and the fast-free week have been celebrated and are about to be completed. Monday we begin the Apostle's Fast. <BR> <BR> As the church has been born anew on Pentecost, we now fast to prepare ourselves to fulfill the great commission of Jesus - "Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit... (Matthew 28:18 - 20)" <BR> <BR> The Apostle's F... Sat, 9 Jun 2012 10:40:46 EST Pentecost http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x48363171 A Blessed Pentecost to all of my Spark Orthodox Friends brothers and sisters! Mon, 4 Jun 2012 01:21:19 EST Hello everyone ! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=-1x14542x48099445 My name is Victoria and I decided to join your team ! <BR> <BR> I am not Orthodox, but I love your churches, your lovely icons and I do say a number of rounds of the Jesus prayer on prayer beads that were handmade by the wife of an Othodox priest from Etsy. <BR> <BR> Nice to meet you ! <BR> <BR> <BR> Vickie <em>213</em> Wed, 16 May 2012 17:14:01 EST Green Smoothie Recipes http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=7179x14542x47924571 What is your favorite Green Smoothie? I've just discovered them a couple of months ago. Not only are they packed with nutrients, and a great way to incorporate more healthy greens into your diet, but they are also Fast-appropriate for those Lenten days. <BR> <BR> Here's one I like: <BR> <BR> In a blender place: <BR> 1 apple chopped <BR> 1 cup cold green tea* <BR> 1 half lemon - pulp and juice. I scoop out the pulp with a grapefruit spoon <BR> 1/4 ripe avocado (peeled and cut in pieces) <... Sat, 5 May 2012 11:55:19 EST Hi everyone! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=-1x14542x47879548 I'm actually exploring Eastern Catholicism, specifically the Byzantine Rite, but feel more at home here than in a Latin group. <BR> <BR> I'll be praying for all of you! Please pray for me! Wed, 2 May 2012 15:05:18 EST What in the world is the Book of Tobit? http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x47805651 Beautiful introduction to the Book of Tobit in Orthodox (and Roman Catholic) Bibles. <BR> <link>onbehalfofall.org/2012/02/12/the-boo<BR>k-of-tobit-introduction-and-overview/ </link> <BR> <BR> Vincent, the author of the Blog *On behalf of all* gives a wonderful explanation of why this book is important to our church and to us personally as Christians. Sat, 28 Apr 2012 10:47:13 EST 100 Reasons Not to Skip Your Workout http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=7179x14542x47778929 I saw this on another team I am on and it is too good not to share. Perhaps it will even motivate me -- I hate exercise! <BR> <BR> We all have those days that we don't want to work out even though we know we should. When you need a little motivation, look no further. <BR> <BR> Here are 100 reasons you shouldn't skip your workout today. <BR> <BR> <BR> 100 Reasons to Exercise Now <BR> <BR> 1. Because it makes you feel confident <BR> 2. Because it helps you get stronger <BR> 3. Because exer... Thu, 26 Apr 2012 16:31:46 EST The Priest aboard the Titanic http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x47778145 Another of Fr. Pat Reardon's Pastoral Ponderings: <BR> <BR> April 29, 2012 <BR> Myrrh-Bearers' Sunday <BR> <BR> Father Pat's Pastoral Ponderings <BR> <BR> This is an excerpt from the Paschal sermon at All Saints' Orthodox Church, this year,during the night April 14-15: <BR> <BR> On this night much of the world remembers what took place in the North Atlantic exactly 100 years ago: the sinking of the Titanic. <BR> <BR> A great deal has been written about that tragic event, and it has bee... Thu, 26 Apr 2012 15:36:52 EST Pascha in Serbia http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x47736208 Here's a nice article about Pascha in Serbia: <link>www.b92.net/eng/news/politics-articl<BR>e.php?yyyy=2012&mm=04&dd=15&nav_id=79783 </link> Tue, 24 Apr 2012 10:01:16 EST Why would they paint Christ like THAT? http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x47734551 Beautiful article about how and why icons are written: <BR> <BR> <link>rebelsprite.wordpress.com/2012/03/24<BR>/why-would-they-paint-christ-like-that/ </link> Tue, 24 Apr 2012 08:34:07 EST Elder Paisios and the Alcoholic Monk http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x47626975 Beautiful story about not judging others from: <BR> <link>www.johnsanidopoulos.com/2012/03/eld<BR>er-paisios-and-alcoholic-monk.html?utm<BR>_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm<BR>_campaign=Feed%3A+Mystagogy+%28MYSTAGOGY%29 </link> <BR> <BR> <BR> Once on Mount Athos there was a monk who lived in Karyes. He drank and got drunk every day and was the cause of scandal to the pilgrims. Eventually he died and this relieved some of the faithful who went on to tell Elder Paisios that they were... Tue, 17 Apr 2012 13:50:57 EST I'm back home http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x47626880 Hi everyone <BR> <BR> I'm back home now after being away to help with our beautiful new grandson, Isaac Patrick! He was born March 19 and was 9 lb 12 oz. By three weeks after his birth he had gained 3 pounds -- nearly a third of his birth weight. He is my daughter's 4th child. <BR> <BR> He was born at home and arrive at 4:47 in the morning! So the family could spend all of his first day enjoying the miracle of a new son, grandson, and brother. <BR> <BR> I did most of the cooking, clean... Tue, 17 Apr 2012 13:44:20 EST Christ is Risen! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x47626738 Indeed He is Risen! <BR> <BR> A Blessed Bright Week to everyone! <BR> <BR> God bless you, <BR> Ruth Ann <BR> Tue, 17 Apr 2012 13:35:55 EST Christ is Risen! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x47580667 I wanted to share my great blessing today, that I am able to go to Church tonight for Pascha. My husband has had health problems and it's been impossible for me to go as my parish is 100 miles away. He knew how badly I wanted to go and said he thought he could manage his care while I went overnight. He has not converted so I thought this was very generous of him. I am beyond happy! I'll go after dinner and the Reading of Acts begins at 10 pm, then the Paschal liturgy followed by breaking... Sat, 14 Apr 2012 17:14:43 EST Hello! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=-1x14542x47542133 First thing I love about this site is that I can do one "intro" message to all my boards - yay! (Because it's late, and I have to work tomorrow! :) <BR> <BR> But just a short note to say hi to everyone out there reading this and doing this journey alongside me! My name is Katie - I'm wrapping up a graduate degree this semester, and finally finding the personal motivation to lose the extra weight I've been carrying my whole life. <BR> <BR> I'm an amputee and a childhood cancer survivor,... Thu, 12 Apr 2012 02:15:50 EST Leaving to help with my daughter's family http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x47039923 Hi everyone -- I'm leaving to help out with my daughter and son-in-law's family. My daughter is about to give birth to their 4th child <em>224</em> Another grandbaby!!! <BR> <BR> So I won't be posting much during the coming month. <BR> <BR> God bless you all and give you a blessed Lent! <BR> <BR> ~Ruth Ann <BR> Mon, 12 Mar 2012 14:50:59 EST Lenten Spring Cleaning http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x47039838 If you clean house to get ready for Pascha, here are some great organizational ideas: <BR> <link>www.thedailybuzz.com.au/2011/11/25-c<BR>lever-ideas_household-tips_storage-ideas/ </link> Mon, 12 Mar 2012 14:45:40 EST The Most Important Hour of the Day http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x47005917 The following is Michael Hyatt's blog post for today. (Michael Hyatt is a deacon in the Orthodox Church.) This particular entry is a guest post by Kimanzi Constable: <BR> <BR> THE MOST IMPORTANT HOUR OF THE DAY <BR> <BR> Tell me if this scenario sounds familiar. You hear the alarm clock go off in the morning. You just need a couple more minutes of sleep, so you hit the snooze button. <BR> <BR> Ten minutes later, the alarm clock goes off, but you’re already sound asleep. Thirty minutes la... Sat, 10 Mar 2012 14:16:48 EST Yesterday: The Sunday of Orthodoxy http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x46913476 The Sunday of Orthodoxy is the first Sunday of Great Lent. The dominant theme of this Sunday since 843 has been that of the victory of the icons. In that year the iconoclastic controversy, which had raged on and off since 726, was finally laid to rest, and icons and their veneration were restored on the first Sunday in Lent. Ever since, this Sunday has been commemorated as the "Triumph of Orthodoxy." <BR> <BR> Here is the beautiful proclamation read by our priests at the end of yesterday's p... Mon, 5 Mar 2012 09:49:30 EST Great Canon of St. Andrew of Crete http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x46878442 Here is a wonderful explanation of the Great Canon which many of us attended in the services last week (first week of great and holy Lent): <BR> <BR> <BR> THE GREAT CANON OF ST ANDREW OF CRETE <BR> by Fr. Serephim Holland <BR> <BR> The Great Canon of St Andrew, Bishop of Crete, is the longest canon in all of our services, and is associated with Great Lent, since the only times it is appointed to be read in church are the first four nights of Great Lent (Clean Monday through Clean Thursday,... Sat, 3 Mar 2012 08:20:06 EST What is your Lenten Fasting Tradition? http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x46792580 Different jurisdictions within Orthodox Christianity have slightly different guidelines for fasting during Lent. Please share your tradition with us! Mon, 27 Feb 2012 11:03:16 EST "Forgiveness Sunday" aka "Cheesefare" http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x46758261 This Sunday we will be celebrating the Forgiveness Sunday great vespers.This is also the last day to eat dairy products until Pascha, which is why it is called "Cheesefare Sunday" At my local church, we begin with the regular vespers music, then part way through the service we switch over to the Lenten melodies. We switch the colors in the church from gold to purple. We say the prayer of St. Ephraim for the first time. At the conclusion of the service we make a big circle, and go around t... Sat, 25 Feb 2012 08:16:27 EST Hello http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=-1x14542x46585701 Hi ... I am new to SparkPeople. I live in Kenai, Alaska and attend Holy Assumption of the Virgin Mary Orthodox Church. My church name is Apollos. I am comfortable with either Mike or Apollos. I am 53, newly a grandpa for the first time. My son and his family live in /sicily. He's in the Air Force. My daughter and wife live here. I am the only one who is Orthodox. I am diabetic and have an odd lung disease. The combination have now made it so that I really need to drop 50 pounds. My... Tue, 14 Feb 2012 16:55:23 EST Blessed Feast! St. Valentine's Day! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x46580403 Yes, it turns out there really was a St. Valentinus. <BR> <BR> Here is his story as told by Fr. John Bockman: <BR> <BR> The Saint Valentine legend is one that strikes this writer as possessing at least a few grains of truth. It is easy to appreciate how the events described could have taken place. Valentinus, the hero of the legend, lived in the time of Claudius Caesar, Emperor of Rome in the second century a.d. Claudius had ordered the entire Roman population to worship twelve pagan gods, ... Tue, 14 Feb 2012 10:51:00 EST Getting enough water http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=7179x14542x46580268 Here's a good spark article with suggestions for how to get enough water -- I don't know about the one about sipping water while driving -- I've tried that. We have to keep stopping so I can find places to pee. This gets old -- especially on a long road trip! <BR> <link>www.sparkpeople.com/resource/nutriti<BR>on_articles.asp?id=1014 </link> <BR> <em>91</em> <em>91</em> <em>91</em> <em>91</em> <em>91</em> <em>91</em> <em>91</em> <em>91</em> <em>43</em> Tue, 14 Feb 2012 10:44:34 EST Last two weeks before Lent begins! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x46561645 Yesterday was the Sunday of the Prodigal Son. As we contemplate this parable (Luke 15:11-32) we are encouraged to arise and return to our Father during Lent. This week February 12 - 18 is regular Wednesday and Friday fasting. <BR> <BR> Next Sunday, February 19, is Meatfare Sunday. That is the last day we can have meat (not counting fish or seafood), until Pascha (which is April 15 this year). For this week (Feb 19 - 25) we may eat dairy, eggs, and seafood every day, but no meat. This is als... Mon, 13 Feb 2012 09:26:42 EST It's Pharisee and Publican week! No Fasting! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x46439738 Hi Everyone! <BR> <BR> We are now into the beginning of the Paschal cycle (starting the *Triodion*) and we have now begun the *run-up* to Great Lent. And we are now together - both Old Calendar and New Calendar - in all of the events connected with the Paschal cycle. <BR> <BR> Today was Pharisee and Publican Sunday (Luke 18:10-14). In the Gospel lesson, the Pharisee prayed a very boastful prayer -- in fact he bragged that he fasted twice a week (sound familiar? - We, as Orthodox, try to fas... Sun, 5 Feb 2012 22:54:06 EST How Candlemas became Ground Hog Day http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x46378608 I know I have posted a lot of this information before but it's good to be reminded every year of the true feast on this day since the world glorifies Ground Hog Day every year! I originally wrote most of this several years ago,so the links that I list may have become inactive. I’m sure you can find other information on the web if you want to look it up. Isn’t it interesting that Candlemas is so completely forgotten that spell check doesn’t even recognize it?! <BR> <BR> HOW CANDLEMAS BECAME... Thu, 2 Feb 2012 10:21:10 EST Blessed Feast! Meeting of our Lord 2/2 (New Cal) http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x46378390 THE MEETING OF OUR LORD, GOD AND SAVIOR JESUS CHRIST <BR> <BR> When the ever-virgin Mary's forty days of purification were passed, according to the Law of Moses she took her son Jesus to the Temple in Jerusalem, to dedicate him to God as her first-born son. At the temple the Lord's parents offered the sacrifice of a pair of doves (Luke 2:22-23), from which we learn that they were poor, since those who were able were required to offer a lamb. At the Temple, the Lord was met by Zacharias, ... Thu, 2 Feb 2012 10:11:00 EST Pray for my husband on Monday http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x45867204 Please pray for us. My husband, Michael, will be going in for major abdominal surgery on Monday -- we need to leave for the hospital at 5:00 am. Surgery is set to begin at 7:30 am and it will be at least 1:30 pm before they finish -- perhaps longer and several surgeons will be involved. He has Crohn's disease. His colon was removed years ago, but now a section of the small intestine has become diseased beyond repair, so they will be removing about 18 inches of small intestine. It looks l... Fri, 6 Jan 2012 18:43:19 EST Blessed Feast! Old Calendar Nativity! 1/7 http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x45860620 A blessed feast to all of our members who celebrate Christmas on the Old Calendar! Today is your Christmas Eve. If any of you have the time to write, we would love to read of your Christmas Traditions. Also, how do you feel about celebrating Christmas after most of the country has moved on (Stores are already decorating for Valentine's Day!). Does this help you emphasize the spiritual aspect of the feast more? <BR> <BR> Christ is born! Glorify Him! <BR> <em>445</em> <BR> ~Ruth Ann Fri, 6 Jan 2012 12:05:19 EST Blessed Feast! Holy Theophany (New Cal) 1/6 http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x45860355 Today is Holy Theophany for New Calendar Christians. It is also more commonly known in the Western Church (Catholics & Protestants)as Epiphany. Orthodox sometimes call it that too. But in the West it is celebrating a different event than in the East. <BR> <BR> To Western Christians (Catholics and Protestants), Epiphany is when the wise men came to worship baby Jesus. "Epiphany" means "a new idea," and the new idea was that Gentiles would worship Jesus, the promised Jewish messiah. <BR> <BR>... Fri, 6 Jan 2012 11:50:42 EST Wheat? http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=7179x14542x45816139 Here is an interesting article about Wheat ... and grains in general. DH and I have pretty much eliminated wheat from our foods -- except for Eucharist and antidoran (the bread we receive after communion), and Litya bread -- the five loaves offered on a feast day which are cut up, sprinkled with sweet wine and handed out to the congregation after a service. We figure bread that is blessed in the church is okay -- thank God we do not have celiac. Although we don't think that is permission t... Wed, 4 Jan 2012 10:36:24 EST Hello http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=-1x14542x45460619 Hi, I'm fairly new to Orthodoxy, having fallen in love with it 4 years ago, and very new to trying to get to my preferred weight range. Only 25 to loose but I'm only 5' tall so it looks like more. <BR> <BR> I became a catecumen two years ago and had to stop attending because the long drive & service overwhelmed my system. Starting to feel better now that I've begun to deal with those health issues and maybe able to attend again. My baptismal name will be Fillina, in honor of St. Fillan of Sc... Sat, 10 Dec 2011 21:12:20 EST Blessed Feast! St. Nicholas of Myra! 12/6 http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x45390653 December 6 for new calendar and December 19 for old calendar is the feast day of St. Nicholas, bishop of Myra -- the person who Santa Claus is based on! Here is information about his life from the OCA website: <BR> <BR> Saint Nicholas, the Wonderworker, Archbishop of Myra in Lycia is famed as a great saint pleasing unto God. He was born in the city of Patara in the region of Lycia (on the south coast of the Asia Minor peninsula), and was the only son of pious parents Theophanes and Nonna, w... Mon, 5 Dec 2011 22:31:29 EST New Job! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x44980072 Sorry I haven't been posting very often -- I just started working at a Lutheran preschool -- not so crazy as the Montessori school I worked at last year where they took political correctness to the extreme! Anyway, I'm just learning their way to do things, and it will take a little while to get up to speed! I thank God that I am in an environment where we say grace before meals and snacks, and where we can talk about Advent, Christmas, Lent, Easter, etc... Not as much money as the other pl... Tue, 8 Nov 2011 10:47:10 EST Blessed Feast! St. Demetrios 10/26 http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x44775569 Demetrios the Myrrhbearer & Great Martyr of Thessaloniki <BR> <BR> Reading from the Synaxarion: <BR> <BR> Saint Demetrios was a Thessalonian, a most pious son of pious and noble parents, and a teacher of the Faith of Christ. When Maximian first came to Thessalonica in 290, he raised the Saint to the rank of Duke of Thessaly. But when it was discovered that the Saint was a Christian, he was arrested and kept bound in a bath-house. While the games were under way in the city, Maximian was a sp... Wed, 26 Oct 2011 14:56:38 EST Blessed Feast! St. Innocent of Alaska 10/6 http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x44450788 Glorification of St Innocent, Metropolitan of Moscow, Enlightener of the Aleuts and Apostle to America (in the world John Popov-Veniaminov) <BR> <BR> He was born on August 26, 1797 in the village of Anginsk in the Irkutsk diocese, into the family of a sacristan. The boy mastered his studies at an early age and by age seven, he was reading the Epistle in church. In 1806 they sent him to the Irkutsk seminary. In 1814, the new rector thought it proper to change the surnames of some of the stude... Wed, 5 Oct 2011 23:25:53 EST Blessed Feast! Nativity of the Theotokos! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x43975055 Today, for new calendar Christians, is the feast of the birth of the Virgin Mary. Old Calendar Christians celebrate her nativity on 9/21. <BR> <BR> Today, we celebrate her miraculous birth - according to Church tradition, her parents were barren and her mother was past menopause when she (Anna) became pregnant with Mary. <BR> <BR> God had done all He possibly could to prepare Mary to be the mother of Jesus. Still she had the free will to reject Him. If Mary had rejected Him, how could He st... Thu, 8 Sep 2011 11:50:11 EST In Memoriam: His Eminence, Archbishop DMITRI http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x43841718 May his memory be eternal. Please see this link for the story of Archbishop DMITRI's life: <BR> <BR> <link>palamas.info/?p=6625 </link> <BR> <BR> Remember him during the coming month in your holy prayers. Wed, 31 Aug 2011 23:06:20 EST Blessed Feast! Holy Dormition (new cal.) http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x43539810 (Our Old Calendar brothers and sisters will celebrate this feast on August 28.) <BR> <BR> THE DORMITION OF OUR MOST HOLY LADY THEOTOKOS AND EVER-VIRGIN MARY: <BR> <BR> After the Ascension of the Lord, the Mother of God remained in the care of the Apostle John the Theologian, and during his journeys She lived at the home of his parents, near the Mount of Olives. She was a source of consolation and edification both for the Apostles and for all the believers. Conversing with them, She told the... Sun, 14 Aug 2011 20:51:13 EST Newly updated website for the OCA http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x42992543 The OCA (Orthodox Church in America) has completely redesigned their website! Check it out: <BR> <link>oca.org/ </link> Thu, 14 Jul 2011 20:57:27 EST Leaving on vacation http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x42703119 Just letting you all know that I'll be on vacation the first two weeks of July, so probably won't post much if at all.... Wed, 29 Jun 2011 08:07:11 EST 10 Things You Should Never, Ever Say http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x42703060 Although this article is advice written to men about what to say to a wife or girlfriend in a dispute, I think it works for anyone -- especially we we talk to our teenagers or grown children, or even a good friend. Check it out for yourself: <BR> <BR> <link>manofthehouse.com/relationships/comm<BR>unication/girlfriend-relationship-conf<BR>lict-resolution?utm_source=Outbrain&ut<BR>m_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=Outloud-Outbrain </link> Wed, 29 Jun 2011 08:04:15 EST Thoughts on Choice http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x42684446 Today I happened to be reading about Jesus' temptations in the desert in Matthew 4, and I got to thinking about choice. The devil gave Jesus choices. He could have chosen to satisfy his physical hunger with supernatural power, to show off his power by leaping off the temple, or forgo the cross to become ruler of the world. Jesus did not change his life by accepting any of these choices. <BR> <BR> Choice gives us the illusion that we are in control. We do whatever we choose to do, so it i... Tue, 28 Jun 2011 09:50:56 EST Blessed Feast! Nativity of John the Baptist! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x42612373 June 24, coming 6 months before Christ's birth is the day we celebrate the birth of John the Baptist. Old Calendar Christians will celebrate this feast in 13 days on July 7. In honor of the wonderful event, today is a Fish/Wine/Oil day. <BR> <BR> Here is some information on the feast from <link>www.abbamoses.com/months/june.html </link> <BR> <BR> Nativity of St John the Baptist <BR> The wonderful story of the Forerunner's conception and birth is told in the first chapter of the Gos... Fri, 24 Jun 2011 09:36:58 EST Blessed Fast of the Apostles! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x42544983 The 40 days of Pascha have been celebrated and completed. Holy Pentecost and the fast-free week have been celebrated and are about to be completed. Today we begin the Apostle's Fast. <BR> <BR> As the church has been born anew on Pentecost, we now fast to prepare ourselves to fulfill the great commission of Jesus - "Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit... (Matthew 28:18 - 20)" <BR> <BR> The Apostle's Fa... Mon, 20 Jun 2011 22:54:22 EST I'm back on Spark http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x42544057 Hi folks -- sorry for the absence, The past couple of months have been really stressful at my job -- I was working as an assistant preschool teacher and I got along wonderfully with everyone there EXCEPT the director. Circumstances led me to believe I could never work for her again so I quit. But meanwhile, I became quite depressed by the situation and when I thought about posting on Spark, I realized that I had nothing to say. Now that I'm home, I'm recovering and ready to post again. A... Mon, 20 Jun 2011 22:06:58 EST Supplements http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=7179x14542x42389456 I'm curious what, if anything, y'all are taking in the form of vitamins and other supplements. Have you found anything that is particularly helpful for joint health, appetite suppression, etc? <BR> <BR> I've been taking a pre-natal vitamin since I was 18 years old, just because it's good for women during child-bearing years, even if we never have children. <BR> <BR> I've also started taking L-Tyrosine and Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid (GABA) on the advice of a natural health practitioner. Both ... Sun, 12 Jun 2011 21:55:38 EST opps http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=-1x14542x42386766 I am sorry I posted wrong Sun, 12 Jun 2011 19:32:30 EST Christ is Risen! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x41429593 Christ is Risen! Indeed He is Risen! <BR> <BR> Here is a webiste with Christ is risen in many different languages! <link>www.3saints.com/xrvoskr_many_lung.ht<BR>ml </link> Mon, 25 Apr 2011 11:32:58 EST Christ is Risen! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x41429532 Christ is Risen! -- Indeed He is risen! <BR> <BR> We had a beautiful weekend! Holy Friday, Holy Saturday, Pascha, and Agape Vesters were all incredible! The highlight of the whole year! At our church we eat from our Pascha baskets after the Pascha service. This year we got home around 5 am. Then we slept and awoke with the odd feeling (as usual on Pascha morning) that we had no idea what day it was. Having already celebrated Sunday morning liturgy before sleeping, it didn't feel like S... Mon, 25 Apr 2011 11:29:43 EST Happy Feast of Annunciation (old calendar)!!! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x41072798 and a very happy birthday to my youngest, Mary, born on this beautiful feast!! And also to our priest, Father Stephen!! <BR> <BR> My Mary is named for St. Mary of Egypt, whom is our parish's patron saint. I remember trying to think of the perfect name for her when she was born and just couldn't do it. Father Vatcheslav came to do her birth day prayers and tried to help me. All of the sudden his eyes lit up and he got really excited and he says, "I've got it! Today is Annunciation and in... Thu, 7 Apr 2011 12:42:43 EST Blessed Feast! St Patrick of Ireland (3/17) http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x40627700 St Patrick, Enlightener of Ireland (~461) <BR> "Saint Patrick, the Apostle of the Irish, was seized from his native Britain by Irish marauders when he was sixteen years old. Though the son of a deacon and grandson of a priest, it was not until his captivity that he sought out the Lord with his whole heart. In his Confession, the testament he wrote towards the end of his life, he says, 'After I came to Ireland — every day I had to tend sheep, and many times a day I prayed — the love of God... Thu, 17 Mar 2011 21:05:04 EST Sunday of Orthodoxy http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x40534089 Here is some great information on today's feast: <BR> <link>lent.goarch.org/sunday_of_orthodoxy/<BR>learn/ </link> Sun, 13 Mar 2011 18:09:59 EST Some Greek Fasting Recipes http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x40515953 I just ran across this link to Greek Orthodox Fasting recipes: <BR> <link>greekfood.about.com/od/greekfastingr<BR>ecipes/Greek_Orthodox_Fasting_Lenten_R<BR>ecipes.htm </link> <BR> <BR> Enjoy! Sat, 12 Mar 2011 18:03:59 EST ABC set to denigrate Christians http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x40418216 Hello all. I received word that ABC and its parent company Walt Disney, are set to air a new show called "Good Christian B*tches". I urge you to contact Disney and ABC and tell them of your disgust of this show. I also urge you to boycott ABC, DIsney AND their sponsors. Here is a link to more information: <BR> <link>www.patriotactionnetwork.com/forum/t<BR>opics/abc-network-set-to-attack </link> Tue, 8 Mar 2011 09:22:43 EST Pastor writes about 1st visit to Orthodox Liturgy http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x40154551 A Protestant Pastor on sabbatical writes about his first visit to an Orthodox Liturgy: <BR> <BR> <link>reallivepreacher.com/node/1422 </link> Thu, 24 Feb 2011 22:47:46 EST The Triodian Begins for both Old and New Calendar http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x39898075 Well it's that time of year again -- The Triodian begins today, the Sunday of the Pharisee and Publican. One blessing of this time of year is that all of the services, dates, and feasts connected to Lent and Pascha are celebrated together by all Orthodox Christians everywhere throughout the world -- whether they are 'Old Calendar' or 'New Calendar.' This year we have an additional blessing in that Western Easter is on the same day as Orthodox Pascha. All Christians will be able to celebrate... Sun, 13 Feb 2011 20:27:49 EST Troy Polamalu http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x39734222 I found out in Church today that Troy Polamalu is Greek Orthodox. Troy Polamalu is a strong safety for the Pittsburg Steelers. <BR> Here is some information about him that I obtained from Wikipedia, below the text is a link to the full information at Wikipedia. <BR> <BR> Polamalu is of Samoan descent and was raised by his mother's family. Born Troy Aumua, he petitioned in 2007 to change his legal name to his mother's maiden name of Polamalu, which he had been using for the previous fifteen ... Sun, 6 Feb 2011 17:28:13 EST On Joining the Orthodox Church http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x39700610 ON JOINING THE ORTHODOX CHURCH - A MESSAGE FROM A PRIEST <BR> (Note: Sorry, I don't know who the author is - Antiochia) <BR> <BR> If someone has to convince you [to join the Orthodox Church], then you are not ready. You may never be, because Orthodoxy is difficult and if you require someone to do all the heavy lifting for you, then you are either too young or immature. You will need time to better understand yourself and what you are really looking for. <BR> <BR> If you are looking for self... Sat, 5 Feb 2011 07:23:58 EST How the Meeting of our Lord became Ground Hog Day! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x39625941 While our country is celebrating today as "Ground Hog Day," today is also a much older, mostly forgotten, feast. Today is the 40th day of Christmas (starting with 12/25) and the day when we remember when Mary and Joseph brought Jesus to the temple and He was blessed by Simeon and Anna. (Luke 2: 25-35) As Orthodox, we call this feast *The Meeting of our Lord in the Temple.* If they didn't cancel because of the blizzards blowing through our land yesterday and today many churches are celebrating... Wed, 2 Feb 2011 06:52:18 EST No wonder dieting and fasting are so hard! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x39445957 Check out this article from today's Wall Street Journal! Your stomach has a mind of its own! <BR> <link>online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052<BR>748704279704576101981864235672.html </link> <BR> <em>4</em> <em>101</em> Tue, 25 Jan 2011 20:23:52 EST I set my Fast Break goals today http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=7179x14542x39306108 Good morning! <BR> <BR> I just started, so am reading The Spark and am setting my Fast Break goals. <BR> <BR> My three small goals are: <BR> <BR> Diet - No eating after dinner <BR> Exercise - At least 10 minutes per day, preferably at lunch at work. I'm starting to do a 30 minute Leslie Sansone DVD at lunch. <BR> Motivation - Post at least once per day on SparkPeople. <BR> <BR> What are some of the goals you set at the very beginning? Thu, 20 Jan 2011 07:29:31 EST Wow! Changes again! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x39086795 I just decided to check in -- I've been busy with work and a correspondence class I have to finish by 2/23 for my job -- and I see Spark has changed their format again. Since I don't particularly like change, I don't like it. The "Huddle" is over on the right -- part of the team stream. I wish they would leave well enough alone, but I'll probably get used to it. What do the rest of you think? <BR> <BR> ~Ruth Ann Tue, 11 Jan 2011 22:04:52 EST Letter from Jesus about Christmas http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x38621987 This is an email I received from my cousin. It isn't from an Orthodox source, but it raises some excellent points. Something to think about: <BR> <BR> <BR> Letter from Jesus about Christmas -- <BR> <BR> It has come to my attention that many of you are upset that folks are taking My name out of the season. <BR> <BR> How I personally feel about this celebration can probably be most easily understood by those of you who have been blessed with children of your own. I don'... Thu, 23 Dec 2010 09:23:45 EST Ancient way of eating! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x38614963 Check out the Antiochian issue of the Word for the Nativity....wonderful article in there for very practical and wise ways to eat sensibly! <BR> I may have to make this part of my early morning reading.....let me know what you all think! <BR> <BR> halfame Wed, 22 Dec 2010 19:56:04 EST St. John Chrysostom on the word *till* Matt 1:25 http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x38563258 From St. John Chrysostom's commentary on the book of Matthew, the first chapter: <BR> <BR> 5. “Then Joseph, being raised from sleep, did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him.” Seest thou obedience, and a submissive mind? Seest thou a soul truly wakened, and in all things incorruptible? For neither when he suspected something painful or amiss could he endure to keep the Virgin with him; nor yet, after he was freed from this suspicion, could he bear to cast her out, but he rather keeps her ... Sun, 19 Dec 2010 21:22:43 EST Blessed Feast! St. Ignatius of Antioch! 12/20 http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x38562425 The feast of St. Ignatius, bishop of Antioch is celebrated on Dec. 20 for new calendar -- Jan 2 for old calendar. <BR> <BR> Here is information from <BR> <link>www.abbamoses.com/months/december.ht<BR>ml </link> <BR> <BR> December 20 <BR> Beginning of the Forefeast of the Nativity of Christ <BR> Holy Hieromartyr Ignatius the God-bearer, Bishop of Antioch (107) <BR> There is a tradition that it was the young boy Ignatius whom Christ took upon his knee to explain to His followers that t... Sun, 19 Dec 2010 20:26:59 EST Avoiding Christmas Depression http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x38562206 The following article shows how our Orthodox observance of the Advent fast and the Nativity feast promote a wholesome and healing way to celebrate Christmas. I can't reprint the whole article here because copyright laws, but I pasted in the beginning to whet your appetite. Go to the link at the end to read the whole article. <BR> <BR> "How to Avoid Christmas Depression <BR> The Eastern Orthodox Nativity Fast May Prevent Post-Holiday Blues" <BR> <BR> "Nov 20, 2008 by Lisa C. DeLuca" <BR> ... Sun, 19 Dec 2010 20:14:27 EST Blessed Feast! Entrance of the Theotokos! 11/21 http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x38042265 Tomorrow is the feast of the Entrance of the Theotokos into the Temple for new calendar Christians. Old calendar Christians will celebrate this feast on December 4. <BR> <BR> The Protoevangelium of James written down about 150 AD tells Mary's story and describes the basis of this feast. See <link>www.newadvent.org/fathers/0847.htm </link> This early Christian book is loved by both Orthodox and Roman Catholics, and nearly made it in to the New Testament. It is the story told by James, J... Sat, 20 Nov 2010 21:44:48 EST Eastern Christian New Media Awards http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x37991384 Vote for your favorites here: <BR> <link>ecawards.blogspot.com/ </link> <BR> <BR> You get choices (with web addresses) for: <BR> <BR> *Best Church News Blog <BR> <BR> *Best Domestic Church Blog <BR> (Note: My daughter's blog "Sibling Revelries" is listed under this topic!) <BR> <BR> *Best Forum <BR> <BR> *Funniest Blog <BR> <BR> *Best Individual Blog <BR> <BR> *Best Group Blog <BR> <BR> *Best Jurisdictional Website <BR> <BR> *Best Parish Website <BR> <BR> *Best Podcast or I... Wed, 17 Nov 2010 20:40:00 EST Healthy Diet Challenge! 5 svgs veggies (2 green) http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=7179x14542x37685722 From SALTYCHOCOLATE: <BR> <BR> How about a challenge? Let's say, eat five servings of veggies and make at least two of them green? <BR> If anyone else has a challenge, I'm game! <BR> Tue, 2 Nov 2010 11:18:22 EST So where is everyone here??? http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x37616846 I am fairly new here.... <BR> where are the rest of the team members? <BR> I need advice, support, and more motivation from all the 'losers' out there! <BR> Looking forward to meeting you all! <BR> God Bless us all! <BR> Halfame Fri, 29 Oct 2010 19:50:18 EST Blessed Feast St. Demetrius of Thessaloniki http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x37557015 Demetrius the Myrrhbearer & Great Martyr of Thessaloniki <BR> <BR> Reading from the Synaxarion: <BR> <BR> Saint Demetrius was a Thessalonian, a most pious son of pious and noble parents, and a teacher of the Faith of Christ. When Maximian first came to Thessalonica in 290, he raised the Saint to the rank of Duke of Thessaly. But when it was discovered that the Saint was a Christian, he was arrested and kept bound in a bath-house. While the games were under way in the city, Maximian was a sp... Tue, 26 Oct 2010 21:29:01 EST Little Blessings http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x37394728 Today I visited a parish hosting the weeping icon of the Theotokos! Such a blessing....! <BR> I asked her intercession for helping me to stay the course and lose some of this obese body. <BR> God knows....time will tell! <BR> There are several miracle working icons traveling right now....I hope you can find one too! Halfame Mon, 18 Oct 2010 21:18:10 EST So - how do our prayers seem to God? http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x36208616 Great You Tube Skit entitled "Coffee with Jesus." Don't be put off by the flip sounding name! It's 2 minutes and 11 seconds. No wonder the Orthodox Church recommends spending time in silence! <link>www.godtube.com/featured/video/coffe<BR>e-jesus </link> Sun, 22 Aug 2010 16:39:30 EST Blessed Feast! Dormition of theTheot okos-New Cal http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x36067874 (Our Old Calendar brothers and sisters will celebrate this feast on August 28.) <BR> <BR> THE DORMITION OF OUR MOST HOLY LADY THEOTOKOS AND EVER-VIRGIN MARY: <BR> <BR> After the Ascension of the Lord, the Mother of God remained in the care of the Apostle John the Theologian, and during his journeys She lived at the home of his parents, near the Mount of Olives. She was a source of consolation and edification both for the Apostles and for all the believers. Conversing with them, She told the... Sun, 15 Aug 2010 14:43:29 EST Blessed Feast! St Tikhon of Zadonsk! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x36025113 St Tikhon the Bishop of Voronezh and Wonderworker of Zadonsk and All Russia <BR> Commemorated on August 13 <BR> <BR> Saint Tikhon of Zadonsk, Bishop of Voronezh (in the world Timothy), was born in the year 1724 in the village of Korotsk in the Novgorod diocese, into the family of the cantor Sabellius Kirillov. (A new family name, Sokolov, was given him afterwards by the head of the Novgorod seminary). His father died when Timothy was a young child, leaving the family in such poverty that his... Fri, 13 Aug 2010 09:00:47 EST Pray for Moscow and the country of Russia http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x35956911 Let us pray with His Beatitude Kirill, Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia, for God to send rain on all the areas of Russia suffering from the heat, forest fires, and burning peat bogs. Moscow is engulfed in deadly smoke. More and more people are dying. Make God have mercy on them! <BR> <link>www.asianews.it/news-en/Russian-Orth<BR>odox-Church-to-help-fight-against-fore<BR>st-fires-as-Putin%E2%80%99s-responsibi<BR>lities-emerge-19126.html </link> Tue, 10 Aug 2010 10:13:31 EST Blessed Feast! St. Laurence of Rome! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x35956731 I always wondered who the St. Lawrence River was named for - perhaps this saint? <BR> <BR> Martyr and Archdeacon Laurence of Rome <BR> <BR> The Martyrs Archdeacon Laurence, Pope Sixtus, Deacons Felicissimus and Agapitus, the Soldier Romanus were citizens of Rome, and suffered in the year 258 under the emperor Valerian (253-259). Holy Pope Sixtus, born at Athens, received a fine education, preached in Spain and was made bishop in Rome following the martyr's death of Holy Pope Stephen (253-25... Tue, 10 Aug 2010 10:05:39 EST Blessed Feast! St. Matthias, Apostle of the 70! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x35933852 More of the beginnings of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church which began with Philip sharing the gospel with the Ethiopian Eunuch who was in the service of Queen Candace (Acts 8:26 - 40)and now continues with the ministry of the apostle Matthias: <BR> <BR> Reading from the Synaxarion: <BR> <BR> After Judas by transgression fell from his apostleship (Acts 1: 25), and hanging himself out of despair ended his life with a wretched and shameful death (Matt. 27: 5), then, that the number of the Twelve... Mon, 9 Aug 2010 09:08:19 EST Meditation on Lot's Wife http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x35855226 WOW! This is beautiful! <BR> <link>pithlessthoughts.blogspot.com/2010/0<BR>7/salt-and-salvation.html </link> <BR> copied and posted below: <BR> <BR> "Over at <link>ochlophobist.blogspot.com/2010/07/on<BR>-marah-salt-of-earth.html </link> there is an amazing post and subsequent discussion in the combox of Lot's Wife, Marah, who you may recall was turned into a pillar of salt when she turned and looked back to Sodom when she, her husband and children fled the wrath of God poured out upon... Thu, 5 Aug 2010 08:56:54 EST Blessed Feast! Holy Transfig uration! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x35853510 August 6 for New Calendar Christians and August 19th for Old Calendar Christians is the feast of Holy Transfiguration. <BR> <BR> Here is the Kontakian for the Feast of the Transfiguration of our Lord - I think the words are especially meaningful: <BR> <BR> "Thou wast transfigured on the mount <BR> and Thy disciples, in so far as they were able, <BR> beheld Thy glory, O Christ our God; <BR> So that when they should see Thee crucified, <BR> they would remember that Thy suffering was voluntar... Thu, 5 Aug 2010 07:32:56 EST Feast of the Cross - Beginning of Dormition Fast http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x35757351 August 1 <BR> Procession of the Precious Wood of the Life-giving Cross of the Lord (1164)- First of the three "Feasts of the Saviour" in August. Also the beginning of the Dormition Fast. <BR> <BR> The Procession was established in the time of the Emperor Manuel Paleologos. In Constantinople, the wood of the Cross was brought forth from the Imperial Treasury on July 31 and placed on the altar of the Great Church, where it remained until the Dormition feast, being carried in procession eve... Sat, 31 Jul 2010 22:23:09 EST Interesting News Article http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x35727834 Orthodox Priest speaks at Presbyterian National Assembly: <BR> <BR> <link>www.knoxnews.com/news/2010/jul/24/pr<BR>esbyterians-shocked-at-national-assembly/ </link> Fri, 30 Jul 2010 10:06:58 EST Job interview today at 2 pm http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x35704934 Well -- if you see this post, say a prayer for me! I'm being interviewed today at the Montessori preschool where I've been subbing. <BR> <BR> Last fall I had my first formal interview there in 30 years after being a stay at home mom, with lots of volunteer experience with kids. I was actually interviewing for a regular position there (but they gave it to a young unmarried gal with experience instead, who almost immediately got pregnant) since I had no paid experience, they offered me a sub... Thu, 29 Jul 2010 08:54:49 EST Dormition of St. Anna, mother of the Theotokos http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x35625896 July 25 <BR> † Dormition of the Righteous Anna, mother of the Most Holy Theotokos <BR> According to tradition, both Anna and her husband Joachim had reposed by the time the Most Holy Theotokos was about eleven years old and living in the Temple; thus when she reached maturity she was an orphan, and was given into the care of the noble Joseph. The prayers of St Anna are invoked for conceiving children and for help in difficult childbirth. Her main feast is on September 9th. <link>www.abb... Sun, 25 Jul 2010 15:20:27 EST HCG Dieting http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=7179x14542x35542182 Hi everyone <BR> <BR> Well, this coming Monday my husband and I will start the HCG protocol. I know -- it's pretty much against Sparkpeople's official guidelines, but I know some sparkers are on HCG and there are now several HCG spark teams that have begun. <BR> <BR> Basically, this involves taking HCG, either in drops under the tongue or in injections daily for a month while you eat a 500 calorie diet. The HCG is a hormone produced by pregnant women. When you take a small amount of HCG ... Wed, 21 Jul 2010 10:44:01 EST Blessed Feast! St. Olga, princess of Russia http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x35342071 Blessed Equal-to-the-Apostles Olga, princess of Russia, in holy baptism called Helen (969). <BR> <BR> "Saint Olga, renowned for her wisdom and sobriety, in her youth became the wife of Igor, Great Prince of Kiev, who ruled during the tenth century. After her husband's death, she herself ruled capably, and was finally moved to accept the Faith of Christ. She travelled to Constantinople to receive Holy Baptism. The Emperor, seeing her outward beauty and inward greatness, asked her to marry... Sun, 11 Jul 2010 18:19:13 EST What do you do for exercise? http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=7179x14542x35341770 I just found out I can swim at the local high school (2 blocks from my home!) very cheaply. It isn't very crowded, and I've started trying to swim laps. I haven't swam for years. Today during "open pool" I made it down the length of the pool 4 times! If I get my strength up they are open to the community for lap swimming from 5:30 am to 8 am - I think I've finally found an exercise that I enjoy, and that won't bother my knees. I grew up on a lake and used to swim for hours as a kid just ... Sun, 11 Jul 2010 18:01:33 EST ORTHODOXY by G. K. Chesterton http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x35210951 <em>244</em> <BR> I found one of my favorite books online - ORTHODOXY - by G.K. Chesterton! <BR> <link>www.leaderu.com/cyber/books/orthodox<BR>y/orthodoxy.html </link> <BR> <BR> You can read the whole book online! This book is about "small o" orthodoxy i.e. traditional Christian Doctrine that unites Christians (not the Eastern Orthodox Church per se). I first read this book before I became Orthodox. <BR> <BR> G. K. Chesterton was a Christian writer in Great Britain during the ea... Mon, 5 Jul 2010 08:59:29 EST Blessed Feast! St. John Maximovich http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x35165944 St John (Maximovich), Archbishop of Shanghai and San Francisco (1966) (June 19 OC) <BR> <BR> This brightly-shining Saint of our own day was born in Russia in 1896. In 1921 his family fled the Russian Revolution to Serbia, where he became a monk and was ordained a priest. From the time of his entry into monastic life he adopted a severely ascetical way of life: for the rest of his life he never slept in a bed, sleeping only briefly in a chair or prostrated before the icons. He ate one mea... Fri, 2 Jul 2010 12:33:01 EST New Calendar Feast of Sts. Peter & Paul on Tuesday http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x35079480 Tomorrow is the new calendar feast day of Saints Peter and Paul; the day New Calendar Christians end the Apostles Fast. Old Calendar Christians will continue the fast until old calendar June 29, which is July 12 <BR> <BR> According to tradition, the apostles Peter and Paul ended their lives here on earth on the same day, June 29, around the year 66 AD under Nero. Peter was crucified in Rome and Paul was beheaded. <BR> <BR> Old Calendar and New Calendar Christians have been walking together ... Mon, 28 Jun 2010 13:04:23 EST Great sermon this morning ... http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x34649466 Our priest gave a great sermon this morning on the lives of various saints and then how it related to our own lives. He pointed out something that has been on the edge of my mind for awhile and how to present it to the teenagers was a problem cause I didn't know how. But he did! <BR> <BR> He told of how we are undergoing persecutions here in the United States even worse than being outright persecuted where you had to choose your life or God. We have sins wrapped up in beautiful little pac... Mon, 7 Jun 2010 15:51:28 EST What's for Breakfast?? http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=7179x14542x34649151 I've seen this on other boards and I love seeing what everyone is eating =) <BR> <BR> So ... what'd ya have for breakfast? <BR> <BR> I had a smoothie of orange and mango while the kids had cantaloupe! Mon, 7 Jun 2010 15:35:13 EST Home again after appendectomy & visit to DD http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x34515514 Hi - Sorry to neglect everyone and the threads here. Last week I started suffering abdominal pain on Tuesday. That night my husband wanted to take me to the emergency room, but Wednesday I had to substitute teach at the preschool at 7:15 AM. I prayed the Jesus prayer and also prayed to the Theotokos to allow me to make it through the night and work for at least the first couple of hours while parents were dropping off their kids because I didn't want to try to reach someone in the middle of... Tue, 1 Jun 2010 13:41:06 EST Blessed Feast! Holy Pentecost! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x34314056 PENTECOST: WHAT IS IT AND WHAT DOES IT MEAN FOR US? <BR> [from <link>frjamescoles.wordpress.com/2009/06/0<BR>6/pentecost-what-is-it-and-what-does-i<BR>t-mean-for-us/ </link> ] <BR> <BR> "Blessed art Thou, O Christ our God, Who hast revealed the fishermen to be most wise by sending down upon them the Holy Spirit and through them Thou didst draw the world into Thy net. O Lover of Mankind, glory to Thee!" <BR> <BR> Before Pentecost the Spirit of God would descend upon a person for various re... Sat, 22 May 2010 15:26:54 EST The Sneeze http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x34122204 (Received via email today:) <BR> <BR> THE SNEEZE <BR> <BR> They walked in tandem, each of the ninety-two students filing into the already crowded auditorium. With their rich maroon gowns flowing and the traditional caps, they looked almost as grown up as they felt. <BR> <BR> Dads swallowed hard behind broad smiles, and Moms freely brushed away tears. <BR> <BR> This class would NOT pray during the commencements, not by choice, but because of a recent court ruling pro... Thu, 13 May 2010 18:32:31 EST Blessed Feast! The Ascension of our Lord http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x34109351 Ascension - 6th Thursday after Pascha <BR> Reading from the Synaxarion: <BR> <BR> The Lord Jesus passed forty days on earth after His Resurrection from the dead, appearing continually in various places to His disciples, with whom He also spoke, ate, and drank, thereby further demonstrating His Resurrection. On this Thursday, the fortieth day after Pascha, He appeared again in Jerusalem. After He had first spoken to the disciples about many things, He gave them His last commandment, that is, ... Thu, 13 May 2010 08:57:45 EST Our Awesome and Orderly God! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x34066918 What an awesome and orderly GOD!! <BR> <BR> For example: <BR> -the eggs of the potato bug hatch in 7 days; <BR> -those of the canary in 14 days; <BR> -those of the barnyard hen in 21 days; <BR> -The eggs of ducks and geese hatch in 28 days; <BR> -those of the mallard in 35 days; <BR> -The eggs of the parrot and the ostrich hatch in 42 days. <BR> (Notice, they are all divisible by seven, the number of days in a week!) <BR> <BR> God's wisdom is seen in the making of an elephant. The four le... Tue, 11 May 2010 13:49:07 EST The beneficial beauty of selfless acts http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x33973007 Here's today's "Healthy Reflections" Email from Sparkpeople. I think this one shows a very Orthodox Christian attitude: <BR> <BR> "Do something for somebody every day for which you don't get paid." <BR> - Albert Schweitzer, philosopher, musicologist, doctor [and missionary to Africa] <BR> <BR> The beneficial beauty of selfless acts <BR> <BR> Al was a smart man. He knew that generous acts benefit everyone, including yourself. The small actions you take now, no matter how insignificant they... Fri, 7 May 2010 08:02:52 EST The Holy Great Martyr Irene! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x33923943 A Christian in fourth-century Persia could scarcely hope to lead a peaceful life in the midst of various factions which leagued together in their common hatred and harassment of the followers of Jesus Christ. One woman who came to know the full wrath of the Messiah’s enemies was Irene, whose name in Greek means peace. In choosing to follow Christ in this extremely hostile land of soothsayers and snake charmers, she chose to ride out the storm in a manner that brought her sainthood. <BR> <BR>... Wed, 5 May 2010 08:00:21 EST The Samaritan Woman - St. Photini http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x33848967 St Photini, The Samaritan Woman <BR> Commemorated February 26 and on the 4th Sunday after Pascha <BR> <BR> St Photini, Great Martyr and Equal-to-the-ApostlesThe New Testament describes the familiar account of the "woman at the well" (John 4:5-42), who was a Samaritan. Up to that point she had led a sinful life, one which resulted in a rebuke from Jesus Christ. However, she responded to Christ's stern admonition with genuine repentance, was forgiven her sinful ways, and became a convert to th... Sun, 2 May 2010 09:19:11 EST Is BMI a reliable formula? http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x33843364 I just ran across this interesting article -- it lists 10 reasons why the BMI may be bogus: <BR> <BR> <link>www.npr.org/templates/story/story.ph<BR>p?storyId=106268439 </link> Sat, 1 May 2010 22:40:06 EST Post Pascha - how do you return to healthy habits? http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=7179x14542x33403657 What are you doing to return to a healthy diet and exercise schedule after the fasting and rigors of Holy Week, and the feasting of Pascha? I always have a hard time getting back on track. For one thing I need to start tracking my food again. <BR> <BR> Did any particular challenges come up this Lent? Any breakthroughs or ideas for living a holy life in any area- spiritual, physical, emotional? <BR> <BR> How was Lent and Pascha for you? Anyone want to share or vent? <BR> <em>220</em> ... Tue, 13 Apr 2010 09:41:33 EST The Folded Kerchief at the Empty Tomb http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x33382285 Fr. Pat's Pastoral Ponderings for April 11th: <BR> <BR> Using the narrative third-person, the evangelist John describes his arrival with Peter at the tomb of Jesus: <BR> <BR> "So they both ran together, and the other disciple outran Peter and came to the tomb first. And he, stooping down and looking in, saw the linen cloths lying; yet he did not go in. Then Simon Peter came, following him, and went into the tomb; and he saw the linen cloths lying, and the kerchief that had been around His h... Mon, 12 Apr 2010 12:47:42 EST Pascha in Jersusalem - St. Nikolai Velimirovich http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x33306352 FROM THE MISSIONARY LETTERS OF ST. NIKOLAI VELIMIROVICH: <BR> <BR> About the Paschal Service in Jerusalem The awaited has arrived! When the old patriarch sang "Christ is Risen" the heavy stone was lifted from our souls. We felt like bodiless spirits. Like we were resurrected! Suddenly, thunderous voices of nations and tribes roared, like the sound of many waters, down by the Sepulcher, up by Golgotha, in galleries, on the pillars, on the beams of the iconostas, in window frames. <BR> <BR> W... Thu, 8 Apr 2010 22:31:03 EST Christos Anesti! Christ is Risen! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x33185716 Christos Anesti! Christ is Risen! Sun, 4 Apr 2010 00:53:26 EST Kali Anastasi! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x33164229 Wishing everyone Kali Anastasi! A joyous Resurrection! Fri, 2 Apr 2010 22:20:45 EST Matins at night during Holy Week! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x33070823 An interesting thing about Holy Week is that we celebrate Matins of the next day in the evening. It is as though, liturgically speaking, we are 12 hours ahead of ourselves. Any services in the morning are a Vespers format, or a Vesperal Liturgy as if they were done that evening. <BR> <BR> This is because when the crucifixion of Jesus took place, it became blacker than midnight at noon -- as though night had descended early. Then when Jesus rose from the dead before dawn, shortly after mid... Tue, 30 Mar 2010 09:08:39 EST Yay! My whole family is to be Chrismated! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x32929002 The date has been set. On the feast of the Ascension of Our Lord, Thursday May 13, 2010, me, my wife and four kids will enter Holy Orthodoxy by the divine mystery of Chrismation. It will be at St. Elijah Orthodox Church (an Antiochian parish) in Oklahoma City if anyone wants to show up! The journey has been years in the making. From being an Anglican priest to being a supplicant constantly banging on the doors begging to be let in. I can identify with the psalmist who wrote that I would rathe... Wed, 24 Mar 2010 10:43:12 EST Obama doesn't sign "abortion- -limiting" order http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x32916898 Just wanted everyone to know that, while Obama signed the "healthcare bill', he DID NOT sign his own executive order that would make an attempt at curtailing tax-payer funded abortions. The executive order may have attempted to curtail taxpayer funded abortions but it DID NOT eliminate it. Sebelius said he plans to sign it in the near future. I don't believe he ever truly meant anything on this so-called "executive order". Obama is clearly the most pro-abortion president we've ever had. Her... Tue, 23 Mar 2010 20:39:41 EST Single Ingredient eating http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=7179x14542x32808588 From an email I just received... <BR> <BR> "Our food supply has become so overly processed, that it's not uncommon for a simple snack food to contain a list of 20-30 ingredients of additives, chemicals, flavorings, colorings, high fructose corn syrup, MSG, artificial sweeteners, and more. <BR> <BR> However, it CAN be easy to avoid ALL of this junk by following a simple rule of eating healthy... and that is: <BR> <BR> EAT ONLY FOODS THAT ARE ONE INGREDIENT! <BR> <BR> Drop dead simple! <BR>... Fri, 19 Mar 2010 09:11:48 EST The Divine Ladder http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x32708304 Yesterday we celebrated (being the 4th Sunday of Lent) St. John Climacus of The Divine Ladder. Our priest gave a wonderful sermon about St. John Climacus and his life and included a few quotes from The Divine Ladder. Halfway thru the sermon one of my twins (they're 11) leans over and - a little louder than she should have - exclaims "That's your saint, mom. Isn't he the one in your bedroom?". <BR> <BR> I have his icon (The Divine Ladder) in my room to remind me that when I fall and sin God ... Mon, 15 Mar 2010 12:54:27 EST Wonder-Working icon "She Who is Quick to Hear" http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x32343834 Saint Herman Orthodox Church in Pennsylvania is hosting the visit of the Wonder-Working icon "She Who is Quick to Hear" on March 20th and March 21st. This is a copy of the famous Athonite icon from Mount Athos and this visiting icon contains the relics of seven Orthodox Saints and has been housed at St. Tikhon's Seminary since 1906. A flyer explaining the icon and the schedule is attached. Saint Herman Orthodox Church is outside of Philadelphia, about 75 <BR> minutes from Bel Air. <BR> <BR... Mon, 1 Mar 2010 12:43:34 EST The Amazing Cucumber! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x32286851 I found this on the Spark Team *ON THE LIGHTER SIDE a place of humor and smiles!* ( <link>www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/groups_i<BR>ndividual.asp?gid=8741 </link> ) <BR> <BR> I hadn't visited the team page for so long that I went to the page to leave the team and then I found this so I'm posting it here. <BR> <BR> This is pretty wild -- does anyone believe that cucumbers can do all this??!! <BR> <BR> THE AMAZING CUCUMBER <BR> <BR> This information was in The New York Times several weeks ... Sat, 27 Feb 2010 10:01:32 EST Blessed Feast! St. Photini! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x32262845 St Photine the Samaritan Woman, and those with her (66) <BR> She was the Samaritan Woman who met Christ at Jacob's Well (John ch. 4). She repented, and told her townsmen that she had met the Christ, for which she is sometimes called the first to proclaim the Gospel of Christ. She converted her four sisters (Phota, Photis,Parasceva, and Cyriaca), and her sons (Victor and Joses), and all of them became tireless evangelists for Christ. After the martyrdom of the holy Apostles Peter and Paul,... Fri, 26 Feb 2010 09:52:29 EST Blessed Feast! 1rst & 2nd findings-- -St.John's he http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x32205041 Wine and Oil allowed today! <BR> <BR> First & Second Finding of the Venerable Head of John the Baptist <BR> <BR> Reading from the Synaxarion: <BR> <BR> The first finding came to pass during the middle years of the fourth century, through a revelation of the holy Forerunner to two monks, who came to Jerusalem to worship our Saviour's Tomb. One of them took the venerable head in a clay jar to Emesa in Syria. After his death it went from the hands of one person to another, until it came int... Wed, 24 Feb 2010 08:45:14 EST Blessed Feast! St. Polycarp of Smyrna! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x32190169 Polycarp the Holy Martyr & Bishop of Smyrna <BR> <BR> Reading from the Synaxarion: <BR> <BR> This apostolic and prophetic man, and model of faith and truth, was a disciple of John the Evangelist, successor of Bucolus (Feb. 6), and teacher of Irenaeus (Aug. 23). He was an old man and full of days when the fifth persecution was raised against the Christians under Marcus Aurelius. When his pursuers, sent by the ruler, found Polycarp, he commanded that they be given something to eat and drink... Tue, 23 Feb 2010 16:35:25 EST Consequences of the Fall http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x32189968 I found the following article in today's Wall Street Journal quite interesting: <BR> <link>online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052<BR>748704454304575081613327728110.html?KE<BR>YWORDS=%22Obesity+Big+Feet++Blame+Darwin%22 </link> <BR> <BR> The authors of this article seem to think the fact that the human race seems to be getting weaker is attributed to evolution and the fact that our modern culture has eliminated some of the challenges to survival that our ancestors faced. I quote from the s... Tue, 23 Feb 2010 16:24:59 EST Blessed Feast! St. Theodore the Soldier http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x32023106 According to the Greek Orthodox Church website: <BR> <link>www.goarch.org/chapel/calendar </link> <BR> wine and olive oil are allowed today in honor of St. Theodore the Soldier, the great martyr. <BR> <BR> Theodore the Tyro, Great Martyr <BR> <BR> Reading from the Synaxarion: <BR> <BR> Saint Theodore who was from Amasia of Pontus, contested during the reign of Maximian (286-305). He was called Tyro, from the Latin Tiro, because he was a newly enlisted recruit. When it was reported th... Wed, 17 Feb 2010 08:46:39 EST Visualizing how much weight you've lost: http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x32022530 Your weight loss = <BR> 1 pound = a Guinea Pig <BR> 1.5 pounds = a dozen Krispy Kreme glazed donuts <BR> 2 pounds = a rack of baby back ribs <BR> 3 pounds = an average human brain <BR> 4 pounds = an ostrich egg or a sack of sugar <BR> 5 pounds = a Chihuahua <BR> 6 pounds = a human skin <BR> 7.5 pounds = an average newborn <BR> 8 pounds = a human head <BR> 10 pounds= chemical additives an American consumes each year <BR> 11 pounds = an average housecat <BR> 12 pounds = a Bald Eagle <BR> 15 pou... Wed, 17 Feb 2010 08:27:15 EST Question about fasting during Great Lent... http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=7179x14542x31758970 I'm still a n00b Catechumen, so I have some questions about fasting this time a year. Up until now, I've been fasting on Wednesdays and Fridays and if it says on the Ordo calendar. But today is Meatfare Sunday. So my understanding is no meat until after Pascha. Then next Sunday is Cheesefare Sunday and we stop eating cheese. So that implies cheese is OK to eat this week. But does that include Wednesday's and Friday's when you normally wouldn't eat cheese? <BR> <BR> Also, and this is a really... Sun, 7 Feb 2010 08:28:25 EST What's the weather today where you live? http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=-1x14542x31686530 33F and cloudy with snow on the ground -- maybe it will start to melt soon! <BR> Thu, 4 Feb 2010 10:24:44 EST Blessed Feast! Meeting of our Lord - Feb 2 http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x31591105 Tomorrow is the 40th day of Christmas (starting with 12/25) and the day when we remember when Mary and Joseph brought Jesus to the temple and He was blessed by Simeon and Anna. (Luke 2: 25-35) As Orthodox, we call this feast *The Meeting of our Lord in the Temple.* Many churches will be having Vesperal Liturgies tonight to commemorate the feast. Others will celebrate tomorrow morning. <BR> <BR> I posted the following last year, but since we have so many new members I am reposting it. Our c... Mon, 1 Feb 2010 09:42:34 EST Photos of Theophany (Epiphany) in Russia! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x31527213 Take a look at this picture and be sure to look through the gallery! I'm sure glad this isn't a requirement at our Theophany celebrations! <BR> <BR> <link>www.telegraph.co.uk/news/picturegall<BR>eries/worldnews/7027516/Russian-Orthod<BR>ox-believers-celebrate-Epiphany-by-tak<BR>ing-a-dip-into-icy-water.html </link> Fri, 29 Jan 2010 20:05:24 EST I won't be posting much this week 1/16 - 1/24 http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x31133261 I have a house guest arriving today so I won't be on the computer much. I may check in occasionally, but I won't be able to keep the threads updated... unless, of course, I can introduce my friend to Sparks! Also, I have some assignments in my new job (substitute assistant Montessori preschool teacher -- how's that for a title?!) so my time is limited this week. <BR> <em>213</em> <BR> ~RuthAnn Sat, 16 Jan 2010 08:48:30 EST Biggest Loser challenge at work http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x31060205 I went to Orthros yesterday morning and when I later arrived at work, I found out that they were having a biggest loser contest at work that started today. I've entered. So yay me. :) Here are a few more details. <link>www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo<BR>urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=2741129 </link> <BR> <BR> Don Wed, 13 Jan 2010 17:47:36 EST Outdoor Blessing of the Water http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x30989366 We had our outdoor blessing of the water yesterday. One of our church members has a house on the shores of a lake, and every year we go out to their place for a service of blessing and a Theophany party! Paul, the owner, has the ice prepared for us -- he cuts a hole so we can bless the water, and clears the snow from the ice so we can stand there for the service. He also freezes water in the shape of a Russian Cross, and stands it up by the hole. Our priest has a wooden cross on a long st... Mon, 11 Jan 2010 16:33:28 EST Blessed Feast! Old Calendar Christmas 1/7 http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x30760023 A blessed Nativity Feast to all of our Old Calender friends and members! Many Old Calender Christians celebrate Christmas with a Vigil and Liturgy at midnight (starting the night of the 6th) as we do for Pascha. I know the Serbian church in town will be doing that. My two younger kids will join them because they have friends there. Actually I would like to also because I was sick for our Christmas and missed all the services, but since I'm still suffering the last vestiges of pneumonia, I... Mon, 4 Jan 2010 16:57:27 EST Blessed Feast! Theophany 1/6 (New Cal) http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x30759794 Wednesday is Holy Theophany for New Calendar Christians. It is also more commonly known in the Western Church (Catholics & Protestants)as Epiphany. Orthodox sometimes call it that too. But in the West it is celebrating a different event than in the East. <BR> <BR> To Western Christians (Catholics and Protestants), Epiphany is when the wise men came to worship baby Jesus. "Epiphany" means "a new idea," and the new idea was that Gentiles would worship Jesus, the promised Jewish messiah. <B... Mon, 4 Jan 2010 16:50:52 EST Blessed Feast! Daniel and the Three holy youths! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x30381939 Daniel the Prophet & Ananias, Azarias, & Misail, the Three Holy Youths <BR> <BR> Reading from the Synaxarion: <BR> <BR> The Prophet Daniel and the Three Children were all descended from the royal tribe of Judah. In the year 599 before Christ, in the reign of Joachim, who was also called Jechonias (I Chron. 3:16, and II Chron. 36:8), while yet children, these righteous ones were led away as captives into Babylon together with the other Jews by Nebuchadnezzar. He singled them out from among t... Thu, 17 Dec 2009 09:26:20 EST Avoiding Christmas Depression http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x30347026 The following article shows how our Orthodox observance of the Advent fast and the Nativity feast promote a wholesome and healing way to celebrate Christmas. I can't reprint the whole article here because copyright laws, but I pasted in the beginning to whet your appetite. Go to the link at the end to read the whole article. <BR> <BR> "How to Avoid Christmas Depression <BR> The Eastern Orthodox Nativity Fast May Prevent Post-Holiday Blues" <BR> <BR> "Nov 20, 2008 by Lisa C. DeLuca" <BR> ... Tue, 15 Dec 2009 11:47:06 EST Blessed Feast! Conception of the Theotokos! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x30232680 The Conception of the Theotokos by Saint Anna is commemorated by the Orthodox Church on December 9. St. Anna, the mother of the Virgin Mary, was the youngest daughter of the priest Nathan from Bethlehem, descended from the tribe of Levi. She married St. Joachim, who was a native of Galilee. For many years, St. Anna was childless and the couple suffered much reproach for her barrenness. When they were in Jerusalem to offer sacrifice to God, the High Priest, Issachar, upbraided Joachim, "You ar... Wed, 9 Dec 2009 09:42:22 EST Advent Fast started for Old Calendar on Nov 28. http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x30064282 Now, as of last Saturday, Old Calendar and New Calendar Christians are all observing the Advent Fast. We are all united in our anticipation of Holy Nativity! <BR> <em>126</em> <BR> ~RuthAnn Tue, 1 Dec 2009 11:16:08 EST Orthodox Lenten Website Up and Running http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x29969054 Hi! I created an Orthodox Lenten Website, which includes recipes (including some from Antiochia - thanks!), articles about Orthodox fasting, and the Orthodox fasting calendar (Revised Julian and Old Church). I hope you can find the website useful! <BR> <BR> You can visit the website at <link>www.lenten-season.com </link> and can submit recipes by clicking on the Submit Recipe button. <BR> <BR> Enjoy! Wed, 25 Nov 2009 19:35:33 EST Happy Thanksgiving! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x29923322 Hi folks, <BR> <BR> I want to wish everyone a happy Thanksgiving. I'm going to be really busy the rest of the week, so will not be posting until next week. For those of you in the United States, I wish you all a great holiday and a wonderful time connecting with family. God bless you all, <BR> <em>126</em> <BR> ~RuthAnn Mon, 23 Nov 2009 14:01:23 EST Blessed Feast! Entrance of the Theotokos! 11/21 http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x29866688 Tomorrow is the feast of the Entrance of the Theotokos into the Temple for new calendar Christians. Old calendar Christians will celebrate this feast on December 4. <BR> <BR> The Protoevangelium of James written down about 150 AD tells Mary's story and describes the basis of this feast. See <link>www.newadvent.org/fathers/0847.htm </link> This early Christian book is loved by both Orthodox and Roman Catholics, and nearly made it in to the New Testament. It is the story told by James, J... Fri, 20 Nov 2009 11:57:13 EST Advent Activity :) http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x29827695 Hi all! <BR> <BR> I wish I had gotten on here before last Sunday for all of you new calendar Orthodox! I just wanted to share an Orthodox Advent activity we do each Sunday. And I'd love to hear of any other Advent traditions. If anyone would like each verse, carol, etc, please email me at loewe@comcast.net <BR> <BR> It begins with a wreath of 7 colored candles with evergreen intertwined. The colors are, in order ... green, blue, gold, white, purple, red and the 7th I simply use a beeswax ... Wed, 18 Nov 2009 15:37:35 EST URGENT PRAYER REQUEST http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x29825065 Please say a prayer today for Resa Ellison, the adult daughter of Fr. James Ellison of St. Nicholas Orthodox Church in Urbana Illinois (Resa is 30 years old and is suffering from H1N1). The following is a message sent out by our own priest: <BR> <BR> There is further sad news regarding Fr. James Ellison’s daughter, Resa. The following is an e-journal entry from this morning at about 10am: <BR> <BR> “After conversations with doctors and staff this morning (11/18) we know that the treatment... Wed, 18 Nov 2009 13:30:48 EST Going for a sleep study tonight http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=7179x14542x29799033 Well, tonight I'm going for the doctor ordered sleep study. I arrive at the sleep center at 8:00 pm and then they will hook me up to electrodes. I'm supposed to try to sleep between 11:00 pm and 6:00 am. We'll see. They're going to test me for sleep apnea. According to my doctor, weight gain causes sleep apnea and sleep apnea causes more weight gain. She says they can treat the sleep apnea with a C Pap machine. That doesn't sound very comfortable either, but I'm willing to try. Lately... Tue, 17 Nov 2009 11:18:35 EST Blessed Feast! Holy Apostle Matthew! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x29773515 Matthew the Apostle & Evangelist <BR> <BR> Reading from the Synaxarion: <BR> <BR> This Apostle, who was also called Levi, was the son of Alphaeus and had Galilee as his homeland. A publican [a Jew employed by the Roman government to collect taxes from his countrymen] before being called by Christ, he became one of the Twelve Apostles, and an Evangelist. While still in Palestine, he wrote his Gospel first in Hebrew, being also the first of all to write the Gospel. When he is depicted in icon... Mon, 16 Nov 2009 10:20:27 EST Blessed feast! St. John Chrysostom! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x29718434 Today is the feast day of St. John Chrysostom, the author of the Liturgy most commonly in use in the Orthodox Church today; also prolific writer and commentator on the holy scriptures. Considering he lived in the 4th century, he wrote an amazing number of books - mainly his collected sermons - which are as relevant today as in the 4th century. Fri, 13 Nov 2009 11:23:46 EST Blessed Feast! St. John the Merciful (new cal.) http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x29694555 The following is taken from <link>www.abbamoses.com/months/november.ht<BR>ml </link> <BR> I was struck by how the story of St. John's life goes along with today's epistle and gospel readings! <BR> Enjoy! <BR> ~RuthAnn <BR> <BR> Our Father among the Saints John the Merciful, Patriarch of Alexandria (619) November 12 <BR> <BR> He was the son of a noble family in Cyprus. He married and had several children, but when his wife and children all died at nearly the same time, he took his los... Thu, 12 Nov 2009 09:55:47 EST Advent Fast begins this Sunday http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x29693705 Advent is almost here! For those of us on the new calendar the Advent Fast begins this Sunday! Please check with your own church to see what the rules are for your particular jurisdiction. In the Antiochian Archdiocese, for example, we begin with a light Fast (no meat and dairy, but fish, oil, and wine are allowed until December 13th -- then 12 days of strict fasting in preparation for 12 days of feasting). I think the rules in the OCA are slightly different. Other jurisdictions may vary a bi... Thu, 12 Nov 2009 09:24:46 EST Meeting with a dietitian on Friday http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=7179x14542x29656632 Well, since I haven't made much headway on weight loss, my doctor is insisting on my meeting with a dietitian. She wanted me to have at least three days of a food journal, so I am tracking my food on Spark and will give her print-outs. I'll post more if anything interesting comes of the meeting. <BR> <em>126</em> <BR> ~RuthAnn Tue, 10 Nov 2009 15:29:57 EST Diet questions... Choices... What do YOU think? http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=7179x14542x28868858 I am so confused. Sometimes I'm afraid to start eating in the morning. There is so much contradictory information out there and I've read too much. <BR> <BR> Do you exercise first (for example walk the dog for an hour... or other more strenuous things)or eat something first? Does exercising first burn off old calories? Or do you need something to start your metabolism? <BR> <BR> If you eat first, do you eat breakfast? Just fruit juice? Protein? Whole grain carbs? <BR> <BR> What kind of foo... Mon, 5 Oct 2009 11:11:40 EST Blessed Feast! Dionysius the Areopagite! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x28826138 Dionysios the Areopagite <BR> <BR> Reading from the Synaxarion: <BR> <BR> This Saint was from Athens, a learned man, and a member of the famous judicial court of Mars Hill (in Greek Aeros Pagos, hence the name Areopagite (see Acts 17:19-34). When Saint Paul preached in Athens, he was one of the first there to believe in Christ, and, according to some, became the first bishop of that city. Others say -- and this may be more probable--that he was the second Bishop of Athens, after Saint Hiero... Sat, 3 Oct 2009 09:25:43 EST Help, I need a plan! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x28784324 I have some big challenges coming up this week/weekend: <BR> <BR> Tonight there's a going away part for someone in choir. The kind of party where the sopranos bring appetizers, the altos bring desserts, etc. <BR> <BR> Tomorrow night: taking my daughter to a birthday party. And I"m invited to stay. <BR> <BR> Sunday night: Orhtodox book club. Again: hot appetizers, cold appetizers and desserts. <BR> <BR> Egads! <BR> <BR> I could: Eat dinner here, and take a veggie tray to ea... Thu, 1 Oct 2009 11:13:48 EST October Chat http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x28781477 It's a new month, everyone! <BR> <BR> Happy October to you! <BR> <BR> <em>126</em> <BR> ~RuthAnn Thu, 1 Oct 2009 09:25:27 EST HI, I'm new http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x28635413 Hi all, I'm new here at sparkpeople and was thrilled today, to find this SparkTeam. <BR> <BR> I'm an Orthodox Christian, and I attend St. Michael's Orthodox Church in Louisville, Ky. Married, 4 kids, homeschool. 39 years old. ...and I sure could USE some transformation! ;-) <BR> <BR> Although I've only been sparking for less than a week, I've already started to lose weight. Thanks be to God! <BR> <BR> Well, anyways, just wanted to say hello. Ya'll can check out my spark blog, or ... Thu, 24 Sep 2009 16:53:43 EST Good Advice for Parents http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x28496324 I wish we had done this when we were raising our kids: <BR> <link>www.touchstonemag.com/archives/artic<BR>le.php?id=21-08-014-v </link> <BR> <em>126</em> <BR> ~RuthAnn Fri, 18 Sep 2009 11:35:56 EST Germs and the Common Eucharistic Cup http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x28424156 As flu season approaches, here is a wonderful message of encouragement from the Greek Orthodox Metropolitan Alexios of Atlanta, Georgia USA: <BR> <BR> August 27, 2009 <BR> HIS EMINENCE METROPOLITAN ALEXIOS <BR> MESSAGE ON THE H1N1 VIRUS <BR> <BR> As we look forward to the blessings of New Ecclesiastical Year, I greet you with joy and love in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, with prayers and good wishes for a healthy and joyous year. <BR> <BR> As I was traveling this summer, bo... Tue, 15 Sep 2009 11:14:25 EST Blessed Feast! Elevation of the Holy Cross 9/14 http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x28314385 The next feast coming up is The Elevation of the Holy Cross. New Calendar Christians will celebrate this on Monday, September 14 (Old Calendar Christians will celebrate this 13 days later on September 27). <BR> <BR> Although this is a Feast Day, we observe this day with a solemn Fast. During the Liturgy (or just before, or possibly afterwards depending on the priest) we will process with the Holy Cross, surrounded with basil (or possibly flowers). We will honor the cross and worship our Lo... Thu, 10 Sep 2009 13:21:26 EST Blessed Feast! Nativity of the Theotokos - 9/8 http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x28234847 Today, for new calendar Christians, is the eve (or forefeast) of the Birth of Mary. Tomorrow we will celebrate her birth. Old Calendar Christians celebrate her nativity on 9/21. <BR> <BR> We celebrate her miraculous birth - according to Church tradition, her parents were barren and her mother was past menopause when she (Anna) became pregnant with Mary. <BR> <BR> God had done all He possibly could to prepare Mary to be the mother of Jesus. Still she had the free will to reject Him. If M... Mon, 7 Sep 2009 11:41:53 EST September 1 - Happy New Year! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x28109379 "It should be noted that to the present day, the Church has always celebrated the beginning of the New Year on September 1. This was the custom in Constantinople until its fall in 1453 and in Russia until the reign of Peter I. September 1 is still festively celebrated as the New Year at the Patriarchate of Constantinople; among the Jews also the New Year, although reckoned according to a moveable calendar, usually falls in September. The service of the Menaion for January 1 is for our Lord... Tue, 1 Sep 2009 15:07:06 EST September Chat http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x28108960 Happy New Year! Today is September 1, the beginning of the Church New Year. One of the last feast days in August was the Dormition (death, burial, and resurrection) of the Theotokos. A week from today, on September 8, we will celebrate her birth. And so the cycle of Feasts and Fast begins! <BR> <BR> God bless you all! <BR> ~RuthAnn Tue, 1 Sep 2009 14:46:39 EST 8/29 Beheading of John the Baptist (Fast Day) http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x28015811 Tomorrow is a strict Lenten fast day in honor of John the Baptist, who - according to tradition - was beheaded on August 29 - Herod's birthday. It's also my oldest daughter's birthday. One thing she had to get used to when she became Orthodox was celebrating her birthday on a different day, because celebration is not in keeping with remembering John the Baptist and his murder at the hands of Herod, Herodias, and Salome. Read the Biblical story of the events of the day in Matthew 14:1-12, M... Fri, 28 Aug 2009 11:07:00 EST What's for supper tonight? http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=7179x14542x27976359 Leftover vegan chili <BR> Corn on the cob (from the local farmstand) <BR> Green salad with tomatoes (from farmstand) and avocado <BR> Cantaloupe <BR> Wed, 26 Aug 2009 17:00:02 EST Thoughts on Orthodox Baptism http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x27973331 The following is quoted from the newsletter of a friend of mine. He and his wife are new converts to Orthodoxy. They go back and forth to Russia from time to time working with disabled people, and teaching Russian Christians how to work with people with disabilities. Here are some of his thoughts on Baptism: <BR> <BR> "Ever since the first century the Church has believed and taught that being born of water and of the Spirit refers to the work of the Holy Spirit in baptism. Only for the la... Wed, 26 Aug 2009 14:35:29 EST Blessed Feast! Holy Transfig uration! (New Cal.) http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x27517056 Today, August 6, is the blessed feast of the Holy Transfiguration for new calendar Christians. Old Calendar Christians will celebrated it on August 19. Enjoy the day with fish, olive oil, and wine allowed. <BR> <BR> God bless you all, <BR> <em>126</em> <BR> ~RuthAnn Thu, 6 Aug 2009 09:29:50 EST August Chat http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x27402504 This year is sure going fast! Now it is time to welcome August and the Dormition Fast! God bless you all! <BR> <em>126</em> <BR> ~RuthAnn Sat, 1 Aug 2009 13:37:37 EST Dormition Fast begins on Saturday, Aug 1 (New Cal) http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x27307422 Hi all, <BR> For new calendar Christians, the Dormition Fast starts this Saturday (well, since Friday is a normal fast day, in effect it begins on Friday.) This Fast is also known as the Little Lent for the Mother of God. For two weeks (August 1 to the 14th) we fast in her honor. This fast is as strict as the Lent before Jesus' death and resurrection. The 15th of August is a feast day when we remember her death and entry into heaven just as we feast in honor of Jesus resurrection on Pascha.... Tue, 28 Jul 2009 11:16:16 EST Blessed Feast! Prophet Elijah 7/20 (new cal) http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x27128763 Today is the feast day for the prophet Elijah, aka Elias. Don't be surprised if it rains today! <BR> <BR> Blessed Feast! <BR> <em>126</em> <BR> ~RuthAnn Mon, 20 Jul 2009 14:58:43 EST 7/12 Blessed Feast - Old Cal.- Sts.. Peter & Paul http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x26927301 Blessed Feast to all of our Old Calendar members for Saints Peter and Paul and the end of your Apostles Fast! I hope you all have a joyous day of celebration tomorrow! <BR> <BR> God bless you, <BR> <em>126</em> <BR> ~RuthAnn Sat, 11 Jul 2009 14:32:00 EST Blessed Feast! Precious Robe of the Theotokos! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x26731448 Apparently today is a feast day - and rather odd one - in that the precious relic was stolen in order that it might be venerated by many people! I just discovered that today is "The Deposition of the Precious Robe of the Theotokos in Blachernae" Long name for a feast day! Here's some information about this feast: <BR> <BR> Reading from the Synaxarion: <BR> <BR> During the reign of Leo the Great (457-474) two patricians and brethren on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land lodged with an old widow... Thu, 2 Jul 2009 15:07:41 EST July Chat http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x26700079 Can you believe it? It is July already! Happy Canada Day to our northern neighbors! For those of you in the U.S., what are you doing for the 4th of July? <BR> <em>126</em> <BR> ~RuthAnn Wed, 1 Jul 2009 11:27:54 EST 6/29 Blessed Feast! Saints Peter and Paul! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x26656789 Today is the new calendar feast day of Saints Peter and Paul, and the day we end the Apostles Fast. Old Calendar Christians will have to wait until old calendar June 29, which is July 12, so they will continue to fast. <BR> <BR> According to tradition, the apostles Peter and Paul ended their lives here on earth on the same day, June 29, around the year 66 AD under Nero. Peter was crucified in Rome and Paul was beheaded. <BR> <BR> Holy Saints Peter and Paul, pray for us! <BR> <em>126</em>... Mon, 29 Jun 2009 16:07:02 EST 300-500cal Less Than $1 Meals Blog http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x26346180 I'm feeling really productive and have started a new blog: <link>tinaignatiev.livejournal.com/ </link> . This is complete with prices, full nutrition info, pictures, recipes, and commentary. I hope you'll visit. Mon, 15 Jun 2009 22:34:17 EST What do you think of all the Sparkpage changes? http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x26275263 I can't believe all of the changes to our Sparkpages! They're becoming more and more cluttered - and I don't particularly like having to make sure my communications and gifts to other people stay private. I don't really like the Friend Feed. I don't mind that kind of thing on Facebook - I'm used to it there - but Sparkpeople is not Facebook, and in my humble opinion it shouldn't try to act like it! What do the rest of you think? <BR> <em>126</em> <BR> ~RuthAnn Fri, 12 Jun 2009 20:17:18 EST Team Goals http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=7179x14542x26266019 I have changed the team goals at the bottom of our page. If I understand it correctly, if you join these goals it will take the information from your diet and exercise tracker - you don't have to track the information separately (which was a problem I had with the custom goals). <BR> <BR> So - if you use your tracker for diet and exercise, why not join the goal and get points for our team?! <BR> <BR> Drinking 8 glasses of water a day is a do-able easy step to getting healthy, and exercisin... Fri, 12 Jun 2009 12:01:30 EST The Apostle's Fast begins on June 15 http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x26265221 The 40 days of Pascha have been celebrated and completed. Holy Pentecost and the fast-free week have been celebrated and are about to be completed. Monday we begin the Apostle's Fast. <BR> <BR> As the church has been born anew on Pentecost, we now fast to prepare ourselves to fulfill the great commission of Jesus - "Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit... (Matthew 28:18 - 20)" <BR> <BR> The Apostle's... Fri, 12 Jun 2009 11:27:10 EST Map My Walk http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=7179x14542x26022483 Hi everyone -- Here is a neat website that one of the people I'm visiting just showed me: <BR> <link>www.mapmywalk.com/ </link> <BR> <BR> Although they encourage membership, you don't have to be a member to use the site. If you are wondering how far you walk, especially if you go through a park or woods, you can draw out your route at this site, and it will tell you how far you walk. I found it very helpful! <BR> <em>126</em> <BR> ~RuthAnn Tue, 2 Jun 2009 21:47:07 EST June Chat http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x26022268 Hi everyone, it's June already! I'm now writing from Boston. I've never been here before and today my husband and I enjoyed sightseeing in the historical parts of Boston, following the "Freedom Trail" a brick path in the sidewalk that leads you in a self guided tour past many of the old colonial buildings. I'm tired! It was a lot of walking. I hope you are all doing well! <BR> God bless, <BR> <em>126</em> <BR> ~RuthAnn Tue, 2 Jun 2009 21:39:10 EST Today's Scripture Reading http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x25684409 Wednesday <BR> <BR> LITURGY <BR> <BR> Acts 13:13-24 <BR> <BR> 13 Now when Paul and his company loosed from Paphos, they came to Perga in Pamphylia: and John departing from them returned to Jerusalem. 14 But when they departed from Perga, they came to Antioch in Pisidia, and went into the synagogue on the sabbath day, and sat down. 15 And after the reading of the law and the prophets the rulers of the synagogue sent unto them, saying, Ye men and brethren, if ye have any word of exhorta... Wed, 20 May 2009 11:23:18 EST New Link http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x25451762 Just letting everyone know -- I changed the link connected with the icon on our team page. When you click it, it will take you to the podcast page at Ancient Faith Radio. There is a wonderful selection of podcasts about Orthodoxy there, no matter what your stage of Christian growth or what information you are looking for. You don't need an Ipod, just listen on your computer. When you have a chance, listen to a few of them and see what you think! <BR> <em>126</em> <BR> ~RuthAnn Mon, 11 May 2009 15:05:46 EST Sugar Sensitivity http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=7179x14542x25446976 Wow -- I just found a book that describes me! It is called *POTATOES NOT PROZAC* "Simple solutions for sugar sensitivity - A Natural Seven-Step Program to Balance your sugar sensitivity and come alive! - Lose weight, heal depression, and stop cravings" by Kathleen DesMaisons, Ph.D. Addictive Nutrtion <BR> <BR> I just picked it up at a Borders book store last week, so I haven't completely read it, but I'm beginning the first step having to do with assessing protein needs and eating a high ... Mon, 11 May 2009 12:13:21 EST May chat http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x25193837 Hi everyone! Christ is Risen! (We get to greet each other this way until Ascension.) <BR> <BR> Can you believe it is already May? I wish the weather would warm up a little more. In Wisconsin it is still chilly. <BR> <BR> Well, this will be a busy month for me. Tomorrow we go to Chicago to visit our son and see a play and also visit All Saints Antiochian Orthodox Church where Fr. Pat Reardon is the priest, which is always a treat. If any of you are ever in the Chicago area for the weeke... Fri, 1 May 2009 16:24:34 EST The Miracle of the Holy Fire in Jerusalem! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x25062908 Here is a website that tells of the miracle of Holy Fire that happens every Orthodox Pascha at the site of Jesus' tomb. <BR> <link>www.holyfire.org/eng/ </link> <BR> (You can change the language on this link to read it in whatever your native language is.) <BR> <BR> The Patriarch is locked in the tomb and according to tradition, his guards are Moslem. He comes out with a candle, spontaneously lit by the Holy Fire - the uncreated light of God - which he shares with all the people waitin... Mon, 27 Apr 2009 10:59:52 EST Christos Anesti! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x24829424 A glorious and blessed Pascha to all of my Orthodox Spark sisters and brothers! Sat, 18 Apr 2009 21:10:02 EST Kali Anastasi! http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x24814403 Wishing all of you Kali Anastasi! Kalo Pascha! Sat, 18 Apr 2009 07:34:01 EST April Chat http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x24370627 Hi folks - Sorry I haven't been posting much, I've had house guests - first my brother and his wife, and now a friend from church who is recovering from a car accident. I hope all is going well this Lent for you. Can you believe this is the 5th week of Great Lent already? <BR> <BR> Blessed Lent! <BR> <em>126</em> <BR> ~RuthAnn Thu, 2 Apr 2009 14:13:25 EST EMERGENCY PRAYER http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x24258240 I JUST RECEIVED A CALL FROM MY FRIEND JUDY IS THE US. HER HUSBAND BILL HAD A CYST REMOVED FROM HIS HEAD 2 WEEKS AGO, GOT THE RESULTS FRIDAY AND HE HAS A RARE CANCER OF THE BLOOD IN THE FORTH STAGE. 6 WEEKS AGO HE HAD A PHYSICAL AND EVERY THING WAS GREAT. I AM IN COMPLETE SHOCK, HE DOES NOT FEEL SICK, WORKING, FEELS GREAT. SHE HAS NO FAMILY NEAR HER. THEY ARE INSEPARABLE TELL ALL TO PLEASE PRAY <em>304</em> Mon, 30 Mar 2009 10:04:01 EST Blessed Feast! Annunciation (New Calendar) 3/25 http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x24049912 This Wednesday New Calendar Orthodox Christians celebrate the Feast of the Annunciation, when Gabriel asked Mary if she would bear the Christ child. Our Old Calendar brothers and sisters will celebrate this feast on April 7. We are allowed wine, oil, and fish for this celebration, and for that day the colors at church on the altar cloths and vestments will be changed from the Lenten purple to either gold or, if the priest has them, blue for the Theotokos. <BR> <BR> It is because of this fe... Mon, 23 Mar 2009 11:43:26 EST March Chat http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x23418960 Well, it's a new month and day 1 of our Lenten journey is just about over. I wasn't able to attend the Canon of St. Andrew tonight, but I will go tomorrow. The first week of Lent sure gets you in the spirit of things right away - services every night through this coming Sunday for the Sunday of Orthodoxy! May God bless all of your Lenten efforts! <BR> <em>126</em> <BR> ~RuthAnn Mon, 2 Mar 2009 20:09:05 EST Why do the Orthodox have closed communion? http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=0x14542x23339252 Since this question keeps coming up, I decided to post this on its own thread. Part of the problem is that while both Protestants and Orthodox use the same words – “Communion” and “Eucharist” – Orthodox Christians mean something different than Protestants do. <BR> <BR> To many Protestants, communion is a meal where all are invited and Jesus is the host. At my old church, one of the invitations to communion began like this: “Come to this sacred table, not because you must, but because you m... Sat, 28 Feb 2009 12:28:35 EST Keeping Lent at Home http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=2503x14542x23275876 (This is an article by Nadia Koblosh, that our priest's wife handed out. I am posting this so you can read it in order. This is the end of the article. Go up to #1 INTRODUCTION above to read in order.) <BR> <BR> #5 READING AND PRAYER <BR> Finally, Lent is also a time in which more reading from the Scriptures and other appropriate books is done. The OCEC materials on Lent are very good as are various editions of illustrated children's bibles: the story of Moses, the Passover, the Crucifixi... Thu, 26 Feb 2009 10:49:54 EST Inquirer http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_messageboard_thread.asp?board=-1x14542x23120374 Hello everyone! <BR> <BR> My husband [WhiteandNerdy] and I are serious Inquirers to Orthodoxy. The nearest church is over an hour's drive away so we are holding off on becoming catechumens until we can move in a few months to a better location. <BR> <BR> I am interested to see how you all handle fasting and approaching Lenten season. :-) <BR> <BR> ~Anna Sat, 21 Feb 2009 14:41:32 EST