Icon of St.Vladimir, Prince of Kiev

St.Vladimir Orthodox Church

3163 Purcell's Cove Road, Halifax, NS

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News and Events

July 1, 2022

Week 3 after Pentecost: All Saints of the several other countries

Saturday July 2nd 5:30pm Panikhida for victims of Ukraine followed by Great Vespers

Sunday July 3rd 10:00am Hours, Divine Liturgy

Romans 5:1-10
Saint Matthew 6:22-33
Tone: 2

The Apostles' Fast continues until the Feast of Saints Peter and Saint Paul on July 12th.

I hope you enjoyed Canada Day or are enjoying Canada Day. Do you remember the old days when we celebrated it as Dominion Day? I always associate Hot Dogs with Dominion Day. I think that was because the very first time I ever had a Hot Dog was Dominion Day in 1955. We lived in Petawawa on the Ottawa River, My father being a part of the Canadian Military. The taste of the Hot Dog with green relish and mustard was something quite new and it was delicious. It was so good that I could have done with a second but there were other things like Canadian style ice cream to be experienced and that was good too. When the Apostles' fast is over, I shall get a bag of Frankfurter, some green relish and some plain mustard and try it again. I'm not sure that I've had a Hot Dog like that first one, since then.

So, we have The Nativity of St. John the Baptist on Thursday July 7th and we shall serve a Liturgy at 10am, then Saints Peter and Paul coming up on Tuesday July 12th and we'll have a Liturgy at 10 in the morning, July 17th The Holy Royal Martyrs of Russia, then on July 28th we have St. Vladimir Prince of Kiev, our Patronal Festival. Again there will be Liturgy at 10 that morning but we shall have the Parish Party on the first day of that week which is Sunday July 24th. Reserve it, we shall have Hot Dogs with Green Relish and Mustard. (I can hardly wait!)

Have a wonderful and Blessed week. Summer arried on June 21st and now is the time to enjoy it. I have a fishing rod, I must try catching Mackerel; fresh fried I understand they are lovely.

May God bless all of us,
Love in Christ,
-- Father David

Civic Calendar with Service Schedule

Year 2022
July
 Sun  Mon  Tue  Wed  Thu  Fri  Sat 
     0102
Panikhida for those who have lost their lives in Ukraine 5:30pm

Vespers 6:00pm
03
Hours, Liturgy 10:00am
04050607
Birth of St.John the Baptist
0809
Vespers 6:00pm
10
Hours, Liturgy 10:00am
1112
App Peter & Paul
Hours, Liturgy 10:00am
13141516
Vespers 6:00pm
17
Holy Royal Martyrs of Russia
Hours, Liturgy 10:00am
181920212223
Vespers 6:00pm
24
Hours, Liturgy 10:00am
25262728
St.Vladimir
Hours, Liturgy 10:00am
2930
Vespers 6:00pm
31
Hours, Liturgy 10:00am
      

Sundays and major feasts are in red. Fast days are shaded.

June 24, 2022

Week 2 after Pentecost: Sunday of All Saints of the Americas

Saturday June 25th 6:00pm Great Vespers

Sunday June 26th 10:00am Hours, Divine Liturgy

Hebrews 11:33-12:2a
Saint Matthew 4:25-5:12
Tone: 1

Saturday July 2nd 10am Divine Liturgy (Hours at 9:30am) Apostles Jude, the Brother of the Lord also St. John Maximovich, archbishop of Shanghai and San Francisco

The Apostles' Fast continues until the Feast of Saints Peter and Saint Paul on July 12th.

It is really important that those of us who are Ukrainian or Russian attend the Sunday Liturgy to welcome the People who have been displaced or have fled from Ukraine. Many naturally find their way to us, Although we are a parish of the Archdiocese of Canada (OCA), the name of our parish lets people know that we welcome Ukrainian and Russian people. Our parish would be the natural place for Ukrainian refugees to find friendly faces and people who speak the same language.


The Saints of North America

When the first Orthodox missionaries came to North America, they came across the Bering Strait which in the winter can freeze thus making a bridge from Siberia to Alaska. At that time, Alaska belonged to Imperial Russia so the missionaries were technically still in Russia. The icon above shows saints who certainly helped form us as a Church in North America.


Saints of Ukraine

There is now a Ukrainian store. All donations for Ukrainian Refugees should go directly there: https://www.halifax- ukrainian-store.ca. Thanks to all who have donated from our parish and those who have come from outside the parish.

I wanted to talk more about the Saints of North America but as you see there have been important announcements which have used the space. You will now have to wait for the sermon, (the Lord bless you).

I do want to thank the parish for the gift and party celebrating my birthday. Can you believe 82! Thank you, you are a great and supportive people.

Father Alexander and I blessed the new home of Ryan, Jessica and Ivan. Braidyn was Altar boy. I forgot to take photos.

A note from Morgan Vanwyck:

"Hello dear Father David and Father Alexander:

It appears that we can go ahead with the date of Friday, July 22nd for the house blessing in Digby.

Please let me know what details you would like me to provide for inclusion in a newsletter. I include the following but you may want additional ones:

  1. Starting time for the blessing about 12:30. Place: 95 First Avenue, Digby. (I can provide driving directions separately if necessary)
  2. Everyone welcome.
  3. Potluck/picnic to follow.
  4. Everyone should bring their own chairs!

It would be great to have a rough of idea of the numbers as we head into the week of July 18."

By next Sunday we will have celebrated Canada Day and Daria and her family will be on their way back to Winnipeg.

May God bless all of us,
Love in Christ,
-- Father David

June 17, 2022

Week 1 after Pentecost: Sunday of All Saints

Saturday June 18th 5:00pm Catechumen meeting
6:00pm Great Vespers

Sunday June 19th 10:00am Hours, Divine Liturgy
6:00pm Kneeling Vespers

Hebrews 11:33-12:2
Saint Matthew 10:32-33, 37-38, 19:27-30
Tone: 8

Monday June 20th Beginning of the Apostles Fast

Friday June 24th Apostles Bartholomew and Barnabas

The Apostles' Fast continues until the Feast of Saints Peter and Saint Paul on July 12th.

"Orthodox do not starve when they fast - we simply abstain from certain foods and generally eat less. At the same time we are taught to pray more, attend services more frequently, and to increase our generosity to others (alms). But it is a rhythm - fasts are followed by feasts. The fast of the Apostles begins on the second Monday after Pentecost and concludes on the Feast of Sts. Peter and Paul on June 29. Most of Christendom will know nothing of any of this - that Eastern Christians will have begun a Lenten period while the world begins to think of vacations." (OCA Website)

The Summer Solstice, as I'm sure you know is on June 21st this year. That means that spring is over and summer is finally here. It also means that days will start getting shorter, never mind we won't notice it for a while yet.

Saints

On a website I came across, I found a list of the various categories of saints. I don't think God categorizes saints but it is a convenient help for us. Here then is how they were listed:

  • Prophets - God's Old Testament spokesmen such as Elias or Isaiah who called the Jews back to the true God and His ways whenever they strayed.

  • Apostles - The Twelve closest followers of Christ as well as the Seventy who were their companions: eye-witnesses to the presence of Christ on earth.

  • Evangelists - The Gospel writers Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.

  • Hierarchs - Saintly bishops like Nicholas of Myra, Spyridon of Cyprus or Basil the Great.

  • Ascetics - Giants of the monastic life, both men and women, including elders and solitaries, living in the forest or wilderness.

  • Martyrs - Those who gave their lives witnessing to Christ, from the Great Martyrs of the Roman persecutions, such as St. Barbara and St. George to the new martyrs who died under modern dictators or religious extremists.

  • Hieromartyrs - Hierarchs and priests who sacrificed their own lives as well as offered the Divine Sacrifice of Christ.

  • Confessors - Those who survived torture or imprisonment for the Lord but escaped with their lives, like St. Maximos the Confessor.

  • Unmercenaries - Those who gave of their talent freely to help the poor and the sick, such as Ss. Cosmas and Damian.

  • Fools for Christ - Those who pretended to be mentally incompetent so that their spiritual gifts would not be noticed and praised, like St. Xenia of Petersburg.

  • Passionbearers - Those who accepted suffering, even death, rather than to repay violence with more violence.

We have lists of saints and we remember some at the end of most services. There are lots of names; the lists get longer and longer. There is a problem though, and that is that there are many people who do things unnoticed by man but noticed, most certainly, by God Himself. That is why we celebrate the feast of All Saints. On this Sunday we recognize all the saints, whether known or unknown.

I received lots of photos this week, a batch of the Baptism of Madeleine Decaire, the daughter of Heather and David, and Anastasia McInnis, the daughter of Colin and Kristin.

Colin, Kristin and Anastasia

David, Madeleine and Heather

We again have a parish picture, this time with everyone's permission to display, and parents have all given verbal permission that their children may be photographed.

Last Sunday saw the baptism of Daria and her family. I have the lovely pictures that run sort of like a movie if they were all displayed. I was going to print the photographs here but it would be much more instructive to see them all in order so do open this file and see all the pictures.

May God bless all of us,
Love in Christ,
-- Father David

June 10, 2022

PENTECOST (Trinity Sunday)

Saturday June 11th 5:30pm Panikhida for the victims of the war in Ukraine followed immediately by Great Vespers
Sunday June 12th 9:30am Holy Baptism followed by Divine Liturgy
6:00pm Kneeling Vespers

After this Saturday we will serve this Panikhida the first Saturday of each month.

Acts of the Apostles 2:1-11
Saint John 7:37-52 and 8:12
Tone: Pentecost

Fast Free Week
Monday June 13th Holy Spirit Day
(On Tuesday, we who use the Julian Calendar for the celebration of the saints, officially arrive at the 1st of June!)

This is one of the most incredible feasts of the Church's year. The followers of Jesus were gathered in the Upper Room, perhaps praying, perhaps just quietly talking and reading Scripture, when there was the sound as of a mighty rushing wind and what appeared to be tongues of fire descended and landed upon each of them (Acts of the Apostles chapter 2). Something strange happened to them; they were empowered. In their excitement, they went out and started telling all the people about Jesus. The incredible thing is that all those who listened to them, no matter where they were from and no matter what was their native language, heard the message in their own tongue; they understood the message.

That is exactly what we are celebrating today. We shall witness the descent of the Holy Spirit, several times today. Each of the four to be Baptised will receive Chrism and that is the mark of the Holy Spirit. We shall serve the Liturgy and there will be the calling upon the Holy Spirit to make bread and wine the Body and Blood of Christ.

The Holy Spirit does not act against our will. In Baptism, the candidate must be willing to be baptised; in the case of a baby or young child, it is the family that the child is born into that makes the decision and brings the infant to the font. There is at least one Godparent to ensure that the child is brought up in the Faith. The family, or individual, is willing that the Holy Spirit descend upon the candidate. The Church shows its willingness that the sacrament be administered by being there to greet and welcome the candidate into the family.

We are all the Laity, the People, the Family of the Church, the Body of Christ in the world. As such we have great power. The Church is the Body of Christ and this Body regularly receives the Holy Spirit. Every time we celebrate a Sacrament, the Holy Spirit that Jesus said He would send, works for and with us. In Baptism and Chrismation, the Chrism; in the Liturgy, the Body and Blood of Christ, and we agree with this by consuming the Body and Blood in the form of bread and wine. In Unction the Oil that we are Anointed with; in Marriage, the Uniting of the Couple into One Flesh; in Confession, the Holy Spirit uses the bishop or priest who has been given the commission "Whose sins you forgive will be forgiven and whose sins you retain will be retained (St. John 20:23, paraphrased). In the Ordination of Bishops, Priests, and Deacons, the Holy Spirit descends through the hands of the Bishop. How then are the People of God, we, the Laity, involved in ordinations? There is the scary moment when the Bishop turns to the people and shouts "Axios" (worthy). The People must reply "Axios! Axios! Axios!" This is shouted three times. It is shouted when at least three Bishops Consecrate a man to be Bishop, or the Bishop ordains a Deacon or a Priest. The Laity proclaims the Work of the Holy Spirit and assents to the ordination by shouting. Without the say of the Laity, the People of God, the ordination will not be completed.

So you see, The Laity working with the Bishop and the Priest are really vital. The Holy Spirit does not usually work alone in the Church, but with the assent of all of us.

Today we celebrate the beginning of the Church, the time that the Followers of Jesus, received the Spirit and the Courage to go out into the world and proclaim the same message that we have been shouting ever since we celebrated the wonderful feast of Pascha: "Christ is Risen!" and we shouted it in as many languages as we were able, and often as was possible. It is important that we remember this, and proclaim that Christ is Risen. It is not Christ was Risen or that Christ will be Risen; it is that Christ is Risen NOW! And for ever.

Just a reminder, Fast Free means we can eat meat on Wednesday and Friday as well as any other days of this week. Enjoy it because the "Apostles Fast" is fast approaching; in fact it starts on Monday the 20th of June, just before the Summer Solstice, and lasts until the feast of Sts. Peter and Paul on Tuesday the 12th of July.

In this icon, the Apostles and others are gathered around the Mother of God. They now have halos because they have received the Holy Spirit. The Prophet Joel is sometimes portrayed in a gap at the bottom of the Pentecost icon, but some say it is King David.

May God The Holy Trinity, thus completely revealed this day, bless us, and each and every member of our families,

-- Father David

June 3, 2022

Seventh Sunday of Pascha: Sunday of the 318 Holy Fathers of the First Ecumenical Council (325)

Saturday June 4th 5:30pm Panikhida for the victims of the war in Ukraine followed immediately by Great Vespers
Sunday June 5th 10am Divine Liturgy

After this Saturday we will serve this Panikhida the first Saturday of each month.

Acts of the Apostles 20:16-18, 28-36
Saint John 17:1-13
Tone 6

Tuesday June 7th Third Finding of the Honourable Head of the Holy Glorious Prophet, Forerunner, and Baptist John

Friday June 10th Apodosis of the Ascension

Reminder that Sunday June 12th is Descent of the Holy Spirit - Pentecost

We will be baptizing Daria, Mark, Amelia, and Alyssa on Pentecost, before they leave to return to Winnipeg. We'll start the Baptism at 9:30am. Baptism being one of the major sacraments of the Church, the Sacrament of Initiation, it will take precedence over the Third and Sixth Hours that we normally recite at that time. Please also remember that at the end of the Liturgy, we'll go directly into the Kneeling Prayers.

You will want to know why there are special Kneeling Prayers on Pentecost Sunday; haven't we been kneeling and prostrating all the time? The simple answer to that is NO! Kneeling between Pascha and Pentecost is frowned upon (Canon of the First Ecumenical Council). Kneeling and prostrating are acts of humility and penance. Pascha is the season when we give thanks to God for the Resurrection of His Son. To show that this is the Great Feasting Season, and set aside as such, we refrain completely from kneeling and prostrating. To remind us that the Paschal Season has drawn to a close, we will serve Vespers with the Kneeling Prayers right after the Liturgy just like we did on Forgiveness Sunday. Of course the Vespers should be in the evening when the sun has set thus the next day, but rather than ask everyone to return, we'll serve it right after the Liturgy. Again, Sundays are reminders of the Resurrection and we should not kneel or prostrate on Sundays either, according to the Fathers of the First Eumenical Council. (I got severely told off by a priest who was serving with me some time ago, for being holy, and prostrating at the Epiclesis on a Sunday!) From Vespers of Saturday until the Vespers of Sunday, we don't kneel, but stand.

CanonXX

Forasmuch as there are certain persons who kneel on the Lord's Day and in the days of Pentecost, therefore, to the intent that all things may be uniformly observed everywhere (in every parish), it seems good to the holy Synod that prayer be made to God standing. Ancient Epitome of Canon XX: On Lord's days and at Pentecost all must pray standing and not kneeling.

"In the Nicean Creed, the holy Fathers set forth and confirmed the Apostolic teachings about Christ's divine nature. The heresy of Arius was exposed and repudiated as an error of haughty reason. After resolving this chief dogmatic question, the Council also issued Twelve Canons on questions of churchly administration and discipline. Also decided was the date for the celebration of Holy Pascha. By decision of the Council, Holy Pascha should not be celebrated by Christians on the same day with the Jewish Passover, but on the first Sunday after the first full moon of the vernal equinox (which occured on March 22 in 325)." (Copied from OCA website)

You can search and read the Canons of the First Ecumenical Council on the internet.

The Nicene Creed

I believe in one God, the Father Almighty, Maker of Heaven and Earth and of all things visible and invisible.

And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the only-begotten, begotten of the Father before all ages. Light of light; true God of true God; begotten, not made; of one essence with the Father, by Whom all things were made; Who for us men and for our salvation came down from Heaven, and was incarnate of the Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary, and became man. And He was crucified for us under Pontius Pilate, and suffered, and was buried. And the third day He arose again, according to the Scriptures, and ascended into Heaven, and sits at the right hand of the Father; and He shall come again with glory to judge the living and the dead; Whose Kingdom shall have no end.

And in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the Giver of Life, Who proceeds from the Father; Who with the Father and the Son together is worshipped and glorified; Who spoke by the prophets.

In one Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church. I acknowledge one baptism for the remission of sins. I look for the resurrection of the dead and the life of the world to come. Amen.

May God bless all of us, in Christ,
-- Father David

May 27, 2022

Sixth Sunday of Pascha: Sunday of the Blind Man

Saturday May 28th 5:30pm Panikhida for the victims of the war in Ukraine followed immediately by Great Vespers
Sunday May 29th 10am Divine Liturgy

Acts of the Apostles 16:16-34
Saint John 9:1-38
Tone 5

Wednesday June 1st 6pm Great Vespers with Litia
Thursday June 2nd The Ascension of Our Lord
10am Divine Liturgy

This icon (above) reminds me of the medieval stained glass window of the Ascension in a church nearby to Gloucester Cathedral in England, which shows the legs and feet of Jesus as he is disappearing into the heavens. The disciples are wondering what is happening, where has He gone? They are depicted without halos because they have not yet received the Holy Spirit. As of now, they are confused and that confusion will remain until the event of Pentecost. The Most Holy Theotokos faces outward and by her hands she tells us that she knows exactly what is happening. She is depicted with a halo, because the Holy Spirit came upon her when she accepted that she would become the Mother of God, Theotokos. Christ is shown in the Mandorla (a circle) indicating His Glory. He is seated as he is being lifted, because He is seated at the Right Hand of His Father, and He will come again in Glory. What amazing iconography; we learn so much from icons.

Friday June 3rd Holy Equal-to-the-Apostles Emperor Constantine and his mother, Helen.

You will remember that Constantine (272-337AD) was the Emperor during whose reign as Roman Emperor, Christians who were persecuted by a succession of Roman emperors were at last safe; the Christian faith became the religion of the Roman Empire. Constantine and his men saw the Cross in the heavens just before the battle of Milvian Bridge. It was accompanied by the words "In Hoc Signo Vinces" (in this sign conquer), and he did. It was the Emperor Constantine who commissioned the Ecumenical Councils, the first of which we shall celebrate on the first Sunday in June.

His Mother, Helen (about 246-330AD) took upon herself the task of finding the actual Cross upon which Jesus had been crucified. There were certain tests performed to ensure that the cross she found was indeed the right one.

And then there are the English legends. St. Helen is purported to be the daughter of King Cole of Colchester where she built a chapel, which today is an Orthodox Church, in which I was blessed to serve. I understand that Cole, the king, was a "Merry old Soul" and that really is who that old Nursery Rhyme celebrates; the British version of the origins of St. Helen, the mother of the Emperor Constantine the Great. She inspired, if not had built, many churches in the Holy Land. You can certainly find many more details on-line.

I must thank the iconographers whose icons I use from time to time.

Catechumens meet this Friday May 27th at 6pm at the church. Prepare yourselves for a Bible Study/Reading Group soon.

I think I've got everything.

May God bless all of us.
Love in Christ,
-- Father David

May 20, 2022

Fifth Sunday of Pascha: Sunday of the Samaritan Woman

Acts 11:19-26, 29-30
Saint John 4:5-42
Tone 4

Celebrating also the Translation of the relics of St. Nicholas the Wonderworker from Myra to Bari.

Saturday May 21st 5:30pm Panikhida for the victims of the war in Ukraine followed at 6pm by Great Vespers (there are three readings at Vespers)

Sunday May 22nd Divine Liturgy at 10am

This week on Monday we celebrate the Holy Apostle Simon the Zealot and on Tuesday we celebrate Holy Equals-to-the-Apostles Cyril and Methodius (first teachers of the Slavs). Just to note that the alphabet of the Slavs is called Cyrillic because it was developed by St. Cyril.

I wonder if you ever look at one of the great poetry books of the Church called The Psalms? There are 150 Psalms plus one that is not usually included with the others. They are attributed to King David and so called The Psalms of David, and some were written by him. The numbering of the Psalms can be confusing if you don't know that the numbering is different in Protestant Bibles and Orthodox Bibles. The Orthodox Bible Old Testament is based on the Septuagint. (You can look this up on the Internet; it is very interesting how the Septuagint came to be.)

A couple of days ago I was thinking and praying about the war in Ukraine, and was also reading Psalm 9 (10):

Why standest thou so far off, O Lord and hidest thy face in the needful time of trouble?
The ungodly for his own lust doth persecute the poor. Let them be taken in the crafty wiliness that they have imagined.
For the ungodly hath made boast of his own heart's desire and speaketh good of the covetous, whom God abhoreth.
The ungodly is so proud, that he careth not for God in all his thoughts.
His ways are always grievous, thy judgements are far above out of his sight, and therefore defieth he all his enemies.
For he hath said in his heart, Tush, I shall never be cast down, there shall no harm happen to me.

The remainder of this Psalm is worth reading as are all of the Psalms. It's amazing how they reflect feelings and happenings today as they obviously did when they were written, perhaps between the 9th and 5th centuries BC.

Speaking of Poetry, the sight of Dandelion flowers against the green of lawns and fields reminded me of a poem written by Robert Frost. It is a poem very apt for this season of Spring when that beautiful gold of the new Dandelion flowers are so fresh.

Nothing Gold Can Stay

Robert Frost - 1874-1963

Nature's first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf's a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.

Many people consider Dandelions a nuisance and I suppose in many ways they are, after all they are so tenacious, just as we Orthodox are about our faith. We should adopt the Dandelion as our flower; it really is one of the most beautiful flowers and really difficult to get rid of; Orthodox to the very end.

May God Bless all of us. Please pray for the Catechumens, the victims of the war in Ukraine, for the people and safety of other independent countries that share a border with Russia, and let us pray for each other.

Love in Christ,
-- Father David

May 14, 2022

This Sunday is the Fourth Sunday of Pascha, named The Sunday of the Paralytic. We celebrate St. Athanasius the Great and Sts. Boris and Gleb.

I received the following from Alina:

Dear Fr. David, Please pass this information from the Russian Society of the Maritimes in the next newsletter:

We would like to express our sincere gratitude to Nova Scotians, Haligonians and kind people beyond the Atlantic provinces for your help and support for arriving Ukrainian families. As of today, our fundraising and collection of clothes and household items are completed.

During the fundraising campaign, we raised 2,990 CAD. Gift cards were received for an amount of 150 CAD. All funds have been distributed to the families accordingly to the number of family members.

Some of the donated items are available for viewing in the photo gallery.

If you still have some items you wish to donate, please reach the volunteer community called Atlantic Canada hosts for Ukrainians.

-- Alina

It is much appreciated that you have taken charge of the donations received at St. Vladimir Church. Thank you.

The Readings for this Sunday are, Acts of the Holy Apostles 9:32-42 and Saint John 5:1-15, and the readings for St Athanasius Hebrews 7:26-8:2 and Saint Matthew 5:14-19. Tone 3.

Saturday May 21st, we celebrate the Holy Apostle and Evangelist John the Theologian. Being a Saturday, we will serve a Liturgy at 10am. Remember Saturdays 5.30pm Panikhida followed by Vespers.

We had a very good and interesting session with the Catechumens last Saturday. We spend an hour and about a half talking about the Nicene Creed. The next session was to have been on Saturday May 21st but that has become unlikely so I will meet with the Catechumens after Liturgy this Sunday, when we can fix a time and date for our next meeting.

Remember those old "long hair" days when all you had to worry about was the amount of sleep the new baby allowed you? Ask David, whose hair is much shorter now, and Heather; and Colin and Kristin. Thanks New Josh for the picture from Palm Sunday.

Wednesday May 18th is the feast of Mid-Pentecost which is the mid-point between Pascha and Pentecost. It lasts until Wednesday May 25th but I'm afraid we don't get to miss the Wednesday and Friday fasts, but we can eat fish and that's a blessing. It's all on your wall calendar.

That's all for this week, May God bless all of us,
Love in Christ,
-- Father David

May 7, 2022

46th Sunday after Pentecost, Tone 2

Readings for this Sunday, the Sunday of the Myrrh- bearing Women Acts 6:1-7 and Saint Mark 15:43-16:8, and for the feast of the Holy Apostle and Evangelist Mark, 1Peter 5:6-14 and Saint Mark 6:7-13. Tone 2

Who were the Myrrh-bearing Women? They are named as Mary Magdalen, Mary the wife of Cleopas, Joanna, Salome the mother of the sons of Zebedee, Susanna, Mary and Martha the sisters of Lazarus, Mary the mother of the Apostle James. These are the women who came to the tomb of Jesus with Myrrh and Aloes, early in the morning, to embalm the body, and found the tomb to be empty.

The Righteous Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus are associated with the Myrrh-bearing Women and celebrated with them. Joseph of Arimathea was the man who took the responsibility regarding the burial of Jesus' Body. Nicodemus was the Pharisee and member of the Sanhedrin who reminded them that according to the law, a person must be heard before judgement is passed.

Saturday at 4pm there is the Catechumens' meeting at the church followed by the Panikhida for the victims of the war in Ukraine at 5.30pm, and then Vespers at 6pm and of course 10am on Sunday is Liturgy, followed by a get together in the basement, and a Parish Council Meeting.

Please pray for the people of Ukraine, and for this parish.

Love in Christ,
Christ is Risen!
-- Father David

April 23, 2022

44th Sunday after Pentecost, Tone 3

23rd Saturday10am Baptism
9pm Confessions
10pm Matins and
Paschal Liturgy with Procession, Blessing of Baskets
This is Pascha - Great Feast!
24th Sunday3pm Agape Vespers
25th Monday10am Liturgy, Blessing of Baskets

CHRIST IS RISEN
CHRISTOS VOSKRESE
LE CHRIST EST RESUCITÉE
CHRISTOS ANESTI
HRISTOS A ÎNVIAT

A message Alina regarding wooden egg donations:

Hello,

I've counted the money collected through our Easter egg campaign. It was just a couple of dollars short of $400! I'll pass $400 to the Russian society to distribute among the Ukrainian families arriving to Halifax.

-- Alina

Remember to pick up the information about the Monks and their Garden fresh vegetable Baskets.

Christ is Risen!
Joyous Paska!

-- Father David and Father Alexander

Palm Sunday Pictures, thank you Alina

Parish Sunday School

April 15, 2022

43th Sunday after Pentecost, Tone 2

Reminder of services between now and Pascha St. Vladimir Halifax:

16th Saturday10am Liturgy Lazarus Saturday
5.30pm Panikhida and Great Vespers
17th Sunday10am Liturgy Palm Sunday
21st Thursday10am Vesperal Liturgy Institution of the Lord's Supper
6pm 12 Passion Gospels
22nd Friday3pm Great Vespers - Removal of Christ's body from the Cross
Lamentation service - with procession of Pleschanitza around the church
This is Great Friday - Strict Fast!
23rd Saturday10am Baptism
9pm Confessions
10pm Matins and
Paschal Liturgy with Procession, Blessing of Baskets
This is Pascha - Great Feast!
24th Sunday3pm Agape Vespers
25th Monday10am Liturgy, Blessing of Baskets

Please note: Confessions at 9pm right before the Paschal Liturgy.

Note also the added Presanctified Liturgy on Tuesday morning of Holy Week.

On Saturday evening just before the Panikhida, we were blessed with a visit from our first Ukrainian Refugees, Louisa and Dennis; please pray for them, and for Katja their host.

Reminder of services between now and Pascha Holy Lady of Vladimir St John's:

Direct from Ivan (Modified by Fr. David and Teo):

Dear All, Fr. Nathanael will be arriving for Holy Week on Tuesday April 19. Here is the schedule of services.

Wednesday, 20 April 6:00 pm Holy Unction

Thursday, 21 April, 9:30 am Last Supper Vesperal St. Basil Liturgy

6:00 pm the Twelve Gospels Matins.

Friday, 22 April, 6:00 pm Shroud Vespers + Lamentations Matins. This is Great Friday - Strict Fast!

Saturday, 23 April 9:30 am Vesperal St. Basil Liturgy 11:00 pm Paschal Vigil & Liturgy. Blessing of baskets.

This is Pascha - Great Feast! Sunday, 24 April, 3:00 pm, Agape Vespers. Blessing of baskets.

As in past years, the Gospel at this Vespers will be read in several languages. The passage is from St. John, 20:19 - 25. Please bring the text in the language you would like to read in case we don't have it.

Fr. Nathanael will depart Monday 25 April. Otherwise, Saturday 16th April 6pm Vespers and Matins for Palm Sunday, Sunday 17th we have Hours & Typica at 10am as usual. At the end there will be a short prayer for Ukraine, not a full paraklesis/molieben.

In Christ,
-- Ivan

It was a great blessing to have so many at the Liturgy on Sunday. We are blessed indeed to have babies and children. Weekday services have been quite well attended and that is also a blessing for the parish. So Great Lent ends and the Fast of Holy Week begins. Please try to attend some of the services. The journey from the Raising of Lazarus to the Rising of Our Lord and God and Saviour Jesus Christ is a journey that we should all take very seriously. We ride into Jerusalem with the Lord, we shout Hosanna with the crowd, we are present at the Supper of the Lord, when he gives us His Body and Blood thus instituting the Holy Liturgy, and afterwards, when Jesus prays in the Garden of Gethsemane; is betrayed into the hands of the Temple authorities, beaten and crucified by the Roman soldiers then placed in a tomb. All of nature waits. Then we are there at the Glorious Resurrection of Christ, foretold by the resurrection of Lazarus. By attending the services of Holy week, we shall see all these things and more as we progress through the week.

Love in Christ,
-- Father David

April 8, 2022

42th Sunday after Pentecost, Tone 1

Reminder of services between now and Pascha:

April 7th Thursday10am Vesperal Liturgy Annunciation
9th Saturday5.30pm Panikhida and Great Vespers
10th Sunday10am Liturgy
13th Wednesday6pm Presanctified Liturgy
16th Saturday10am Liturgy Lazarus Saturday
5.30pm Panikhida and Great Vespers
17th Sunday10am Liturgy Palm Sunday
21st Thursday10am Vesperal Liturgy Institution of the Lord's Supper
6pm 12 Passion Gospels
22nd Friday3pm Great Vespers - Removal of Christ's body from the Cross
Lamentation service - with procession of Pleschanitza around the church
This is Great Friday - Strict Fast!
23rd Saturday10am Baptism
10pm Matins and
Paschal Liturgy with Procession
This is Pascha - Great Feast!
24th Sunday3pm Agape Vespers
25th Monday10am Liturgy

St. Vladimir in Halifax NS
Saturday, April 9, 5:30pm - Panikhida and Vespers
Sunday, April 10, 10:00am - Hours and Divine Liturgy, St. Mary of Egypt
Wednesday, April 13th, 6:00pm - Presanctified Liturgy

Holy Lady of Vladimir in St. John's NL
Sunday April 10rd, 10:00am - Reader's Hours and Typica

Sorry to announce the death of Maria Luca, the mother of Alexandra Kokyrtsa, with her husband Iouri. They are from Moldova and members of our parish. Maria was 90 years of age. She did attend liturgy from time to time, and I remember her well. Father Alexander was able to take her Communion the week before her death. Her daughter Alexandra, and family mourn her passing; May her memory be eternal!

We continue to pray for the victims of the war in Ukraine.

We are coming to the final two weeks of Great Lent. Let us try to make an effort to really observe the Fast. If we have not been able, or have forgotten the Fast up to this point, let us make a sincere effort for the next two weeks. Fasting will make the great Feast of Pascha much more poignant. Remember that children, the elderly, and those under medical care, and those taking medication, must be very careful of fasting and should take great care when doing so.

Thinking ahead - Baskets will be blessed after the Saturday night Paschal Liturgy and after the Monday morning Liturgy. I"m hoping that after the blessing of baskets on Saturday night, which will surely be very early Sunday Morning by that time, we can have a feast in the basement. We could perhaps have such wonderful goodies in our baskets that we can all share, making it a party.

For those of us not used to Orthodox customs, we bless baskets full of all the things we don"t eat during the Fast. There is usually a loaf called Paska, which is a loaf made with butter and eggs and sometimes dried fruits, and frequently glazed with white icing, and sometimes sprinkles. That loaf is placed in the centre of the basket and a candle is stuck in the top of it and is lit during the blessing. The basket may contain meats, eggs, fats, frequently garlic and horseradish, cheese, and anything else you can think of. In the same way we have restricted our eating, we splurge and feast. The sermon of Saint John Chrysostom, which is read at the Pascha Liturgy, tells us that whether we have fasted or not, we must feast at Pascha.

Can you believe, yesterday we were asking each other to forgive, and next Sunday will be Palm Sunday and then Holy Week with lots of services (check the listing above).

May God give us strength, and may He bless each of us,
Love in Christ,
-- Father David

April 2, 2022

41th Sunday after Pentecost, Tone 8

St. Vladimir in Halifax NS
Saturday, April 2, 10:00am - Liturgy, Commemoration of the Departed, Please prepare your list and this list can contain Orthodox and non-Orthodox
5:30pm - Panikhida for the victims of the war in Ukraine followed by Vespers
Sunday, April 3, 10:00am - Hours and Divine Liturgy, St. John of the Ladder
Thursday, April 7th, 10:00am - Vesperal Liturgy of the Annunciation of the Most Holy Theotokos

Holy Lady of Vladimir in St. John's NL
Sunday April 3rd, 10:00am - Reader's Hours and Typica

This past week saw the 35th Anniversary of Father Maximos' Ordination to the Holy Priesthood. Father Alexander arranged a lovely lunch meeting for the priests serving in Halifax. Father Maximos, Father Panagiotis, Father George, Father Alexander and I, we had lunch in an Indian restaurant; and very pleasant it was too. Since we are fasting, we were limited to the Vegan menu but surprising how delicious vegan Indian food can be. We couldn't have dessert because almost all of the Indian sweets are made with some form of milk, and delicious they are as well. Another time we will have to visit when we can have lamb, and goat, and very sweet desserts. We actually wanted to go to a restaurant where Father Maximos is not known, but the moment we walked in the door, Father Maximos was greeted like a long lost friend. I believe there is nowhere in Halifax that Father Maximos would not be known and greeted. May God bless him for another 35 years.

We are thinking of the problems being faced because of the war in Ukraine. You read about this in the special appeal bulletin we sent out; the appeal for help and goods to aid the Refugees we are expecting to arrive in Halifax. We suspect that Refugees will be sent to larger communities across the country, but we must be ready here in Halifax to receive our share. A lot of Ukrainians are Orthodox Christians and so we must be prepared to accommodate them in our parish. Our name - "St. Vladimir," and "Prince of Kiev," will likely and immediately suggest a Ukrainian parish. While that is not so, (we are a parish for all Orthodox, no matter their nationality), we do have Ukrainian and Russian parishioners who have relatives still in their home land, and therefore we would be able to make refugees feel very "at home" in our community. We must be prepared for this. Father Alexander and I have discussed it and we will watch carefully, and take any necessary steps to accommodate them within our worshiping community.

We have had a good number of people attend the Wednesday Presanctified Liturgies. This next week there will not be a Presanctified on Wednesday because we will be celebrating the feast of the Annunciation of the Most Holy Theotokos on Thursday April 7th with a Vesperal Liturgy at 10am. Our last Presanctified for this Great Lent will be on Wednesday April 13th at 6pm.

Last Sunday's Liturgy; Father Alexander's sermon.

May God bless all of us,
Love in Christ,
-- Father David

Pray for Peace and Justice in Ukraine

March 25, 2022

40th Sunday after Pentecost, Tone 7

Saturday, March 26, 5:30pm - Panikhida and Great Vespers
Sunday, March 27, 10:00am - Hours and Divine Liturgy
Wednesday, March 30rd, 6:00pm - Presanctified Liturgy

Ivan wrote:

Dear All,

We very much thank Fr. Nathanael for visiting us this weekend. Though Newfoundland weather and Air Canada conspired to try to keep him here a little longer, he finally arrived back home at around 2am this (Tuesday) morning.

The Great Feast of the Annunciation of the Most Holy Theotokos is this Friday, March 25. As such we will have reader's Vespers and Matins on Thursday evening, March 24, at 7pm. Otherwise, Hours and Typica will take place on Sunday at 10am as usual.

In Christ,
-- Ivan

Coffee time with Father Nathanael after Liturgy - St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador.

Over the past week, I have received several calls from people wishing to help with refugees arriving from Ukraine. Several of those people have come to the church to find out what they can do to help. At the moment we have not had any contact from refugees. When and if we do, it will be mentioned on our website and in the bulletin and we'll do what we can to help. I am also explaining that as a Canadian charity, we are not permitted to send monies outside of the country; therefore we are sending our parish contributions via the Canadian Red Cross, earmarked for the relief of people in Ukraine. I am suggesting that people do that individually by sending to the Canadian Red Cross or other international charity, that way their tax receipt will come directly from that charity. Each family will have its own way of dealing with charitable giving. Our wooden eggs supplied by Alina, is one of the ways we, as a parish, are raising money towards the relief of those suffering in Ukraine.

I want to thank those who have made such a great effort to finish the basement floor. The new Josh and his dad spent a lot of time finishing the tiling and making it look good. Thank you for that; it really does look good now, smooth and light. We must also thank David for coordinating this project, not an easy task, thank goodness he is on maternity leave. Now he is looking for opinions about possible colours for painting the basement walls.

The readings for Liturgy this Sunday are:

Epistle, Hebrews 4:14-5:6
Gospel, Saint Mark 8:34-9:1

That seems to be it for this week. Braidyn was awarded a medal by NATO and I'm hoping to get a picture of him being presented with it. Holly wrote a poem but corrected it so I'll try to include it next week. Keep praying for Ukraine and ask God to deal with that situation.

May God bless all of us,
Love in Christ,
-- Father David

March 18, 2022

39th Sunday after Pentecost, Tone 6

Saturday, March 19, 5:30pm - Panikhida and Great Vespers
Sunday, March 20, 10:00am - Hours and Divine Liturgy
Wednesday, March 23rd, 6:00pm - Presanctified Liturgy

Holy Lady Vladimir St. John's:

Father Nathanael is visiting this weekend and will serve Saturday March 19th 5.30 pm Panikhida/Parastas - Great Vespers with time for Confessions afterwards

Sunday March 20th 10am Hours and Liturgy followed by Moleben/Paraklesis for peace in Ukraine

March 25th is the feast of the Annunciation of the Most Holy Theotokos. The Epistle and Gospel for this feast are Hebrews 2:11-18 and Saint Luke 1:24-38.

March 24th 7pm Reader's Vespers - Annunciation

Last Sunday, the feast of The Triumph of Orthodoxy and the Restoration of Holy Icons, Father Maximos organized a Vespers service. There were five priests present, Father Maximos, Father Panagiotis, Father George, Father Alexander and me. A good number of our parishioners attended. This year the Icons were processed around the inside of the church, it was just a bit cold to go around the block as we did the year before. Please check the St. Antonios Antiochian Orthodox website and the St. George Greek Orthodox website for their schedules of services during Great Lent.

If you've been downstairs you will notice the incredible difference to the floor. The installation of tiles is almost complete. I believe the guys are planning on finishing the work this coming Saturday. David knows all the details of that. A great THANK YOU to all who have been involved in the acquiring and putting down of the tiles. It makes such a difference and we shall soon be able to have coffee and snacks after Liturgy. We won't have to go home hungry.

I want to THANK those who make Prosphora as well. They seldom get recognized and this is such an important task, the making of the loaf that provides the Lamb that is consecrated, and the Antidoron. If you are able to contribute to the making of this, please let Colin know, we need more. It is not a difficult task, you need white flour, yeast, salt, and water, plus a seal, and a few muscles for the kneading and then an oven for baking. Colin or Kristin will give you the recipe and instructions.

Please remember the wooden eggs that Alina has donated to raising money for Ukraine, $5 or more each. All money should be placed in an envelope with your name clearly indicated so you can receive credit for Income Tax Deduction purposes.

Can you see five priests who are happy to be in each other's company? Look very carefully and you may see Braidyn! Thank you Alina for the photos.

May God bless us,
Love in Christ,
-- Father David

March 11, 2022

38th Sunday after Pentecost, Tone 5

Saturday, March 12, 5:30pm - Panikhida for those who have lost their lives during the war in Ukraine
Saturday, March 12, 6pm - Vespers
Sunday, March 13, 9:30am - Hours and Divine Liturgy

This Saturday, March 12th, Vespers as usual at 6pm with a Panikhida for those killed in Ukraine, starting at 5.30pm; Sunday March 13th, Liturgy at 10am, again as usual. You will remember that extra hour of sleep we enjoyed in October, well now we have to return it. Daylight Saving Times begins after we have gone to bed on Saturday night. There is an extra service on Sunday, Vespers at St. Antonios Church, 2480 Windsor Street B3K 5B9. This is Triumph of Orthodoxy Sunday when we celebrate the return of icons and the defeat of the Iconoclasts (those against Icons). This happened on the first Sunday of Lent March 11, 843, we meet for this extra service when we celebrate this event and display icons.

The readings for this week have been from the beginnings of Genesis, Proverbs and Isaiah and makes good reading. The readings for this Sunday are Hebrews 11:24-26, 32-12:2 and Saint John 1:43-51. Try to read these ahead of the Liturgy.

Let's us turn now to Ukraine. My heart breaks for the people of Ukraine. Since we, as a Canadian Charity are not permitted to send charitable donations out of the country, any monies given to the parish for the relief of Ukraine, will be sent via the Canadian Red Cross. Of course, you can donate individually to the Red Cross or other charities, or via the parish. Please make sure you mark you donation clearly. There are also the beautiful wooden Easter Eggs that Alina has so generously provided; they are $5 or more per egg. I believe they are Ukrainian in origin. They may be your remembrance of an Independent Ukraine, if Russia gets its way. Let us pray for Ukraine and for the people who have to exist under the cruelty of war, and those who are fleeing to safety. Pray also for the countries that are accepting an incredible number of refugees. May God bless and protect them all.

Attached you will find the proposed schedule of services planned for Great Lent. Sometimes we have to change the schedule at the last minute due usually to a lack of choir. Our choir director is a doctor and liable to being called suddenly. Father Alexander teaches full-time classes and is not always available. We work around these obstacles giving thanks to God for the love and privilege all our people bring to the parish. I am older; you are younger, so we depend upon you to deal with the fabric of the building, and the many other things necessary to help the parish operate. Thank you to everybody. May God bless all of us.

This photograph was several years ago when we paraded the Icons and Reliquaries around the block. Father Antonios later took the relics and icons in his car and blessed the whole of Halifax. I hope we have a good number of our people to help carry icons; I further hope we shall have weather that will allow us to have a procession.

For anyone who was not at the Liturgy and Vespers last Sunday, Forgiveness Sunday, I ask you to Forgive me, as I forgive; May God forgive us both!

Love in Christ to all,
May God bless all of us,
-- Father David

March 5, 2022

37th Sunday after Pentecost, Tone 4

Saturday, March 5, 5:30pm - Panikhida for those who have lost their lives during the war in Ukraine
Saturday, March 5, 6pm - Vespers
Sunday, March 6, 9:30am - Hours and Divine Liturgy

For the time being we also include Holy Lady of Vladimir Mission, St. John's Newfoundland, Canadian Orthodox Church - Archdiocese of Canada (OCA), Under the Omophore of His Eminence Archbishop Irénée (Rochon), Archimandrite David (Edwards) Rector and Father Alexander Treiger

We have begun the lead up to Great Lent and this Sunday is Cheesefare which is also Forgiveness Sunday. We shall follow the usual pattern of serving Forgiveness Vespers immediately after the Liturgy with the ceremony of asking forgiveness of each other. Liturgy will begin at 9:30am and just one Liturgy with everyone attending as best we can. During the forgiveness ceremony, we approach each other and say, "Please forgive me, I forgive you, may God forgive us both."

The readings for this Sunday are Romans 13:11- 14:4 and Saint Matthew 6:14-21. Remember that Tomorrow, February 7th is the beginning of Great Lent, and Wednesday is the Commemoration of the First and Second findings of the Precious Head of Saint John the Baptist with the readings 2 Corinthians 4:6-15 and Saint Matthew 11:2-15. Saturday is the Commemoration of the Great Martyr Theodore the Recruit when the readings are Hebrews 1:1-12 and Saint Mark 2:23-3:5.

Services this week: Saturday March 5th at 5.30pm Panikhida, for those who have lost their lives during the war in Ukraine, followed by Vespers. Sunday March 6th at 10 am Liturgy followed immediately by Forgiveness Vespers and the Act of Forgiving. This is also Cheesefare so Dairy and eggs join meat on the no-go list. Wednesday March 9th The Great Canon of St. Andrew of Crete. Instead of reciting this Canon on three evenings, well do all three segments on the one evening.

Looking forward: Sunday March 13 is The Sunday of Orthodoxy when we celebrate and give thanks for the return of Icons to the Church. We will have a procession of icons so please bring a favourite icon for each member of your family to carry. Saturday March 19th Liturgy and Commemoration of the Departed. Please prepare your lists of those to be commemorated. These lists can contain non- Orthodox as well as Orthodox. It's when we commemorate our family and friends to be included on the Diskos (plate) at the Proskomedia before Liturgy that we commemorate only the Orthodox living and departed.

On my name day, St. David's Day, March 1st, I bought a leek which is an ancient symbol of St. David, and made a buttered leek side dish; it was indeed delicious.

I was hoping to report on a lovely holiday but as it turned out there was no holiday. I managed one week of quiet, but the rest of the month was full of Newfoundland and Covid. I don't put the two in the same category because I thoroughly enjoyed my time in Newfoundland and Father Alexander and his family were completely frustrated by the Covid positive results that went through each member of their family. They are all better now, thank God.

I was met in Saint John's, after the screening and picking up the 5 packs of Covid indicators, by the choir director and president of the Holy Lady of Vladimir Mission. I've known Ivan Saika and his family for years, from when I served that mission about ten or more years ago. There were folk that I knew and was very pleased to meet again. There were many confessions, a Panikhida for all the departed of the parish, Vespers, and since they did not have any Holy Water, I served the Great Blessing of Water. There was Liturgy and a very nice gathering for tea, coffee and snacks afterwards. I hope we can get back to doing this soon. I certainly miss the camaraderie and chatter that is really important for us as a community. (Speaking of that, I would ask that you to please keep the noise down for the reading of the Post Communion Prayers. As a community it is really important for us to gather and talk. Please just keep the noise down during those prayers.)

I happen to have a couple of photos taken during the services in St. John's

It was really good to be amongst the people of this mission. They have just rented a building that used to be a dog grooming parlour; a very nice space. I was particularly pleased to have Ivan and Theodora's son Alexander as my Altar Servant. He and his sister Anastasia were young children when I last saw them.

As you see, a beautiful group of people. I was invited along with Ivan and Teo, to the home of Octavia and Adrian Dobre where I first tasted the lovely Plum Brandy called Ţuică (Romanian Moonshine!). Since they have not been back to Romania for a while, we had shots of Tequila which apparently is similar in taste but not nearly as nice. I certainly enjoyed the meal of slow cooked Moose. Wow! It was lovely. It's interesting that Slivovitz, (another name for Suika), is available in most provinces but not in Newfoundland and Labrador, nor in Nova Scotia. What a shame.

Ukraine: We share the same Liturgy with most Orthodox, the Greek Church, the Antiochian Church, and others. It is that which makes it very difficult to understand what is really going on in Eastern Europe. May God bless and Protect all the innocent.

I point out that we, the Parish of St. Vladimir Prince of Kiev, are part of the Canadian Orthodox Church, which in turn is part of the Autocephalous Orthodox Church in America (OCA) under His Beatitude Metropolitan Tikhon (Mollard), Archbishop of Washington, and Metropolitan of all America and Canada, and under the Omophor of His Eminence Archbishop Irénée (Rochon), Archbishop of Ottawa, and the Archdiocese of Canada.

Alina has a number of Wooden, Decorated Easter Eggs that she was planning to use as a money maker for the parish, but now intends to sell them to raise money for the situation in Ukraine. She suggests $5 or more for each egg. Our own Charity status prevents us from sending money directly to Ukraine, so the Parish Council will have to devise a means to send money, if they so desire, perhaps via another charity such as the Red Cross and designate it as Ukrainian Relief.

Please continue to pray for the people of Ukraine and for all who have lost their lives. May God protect all the innocent. May He also protect the countries surrounding Ukraine that are accepting the great number of refugees. There will be many saints who go unrecognized; God will know them because they belong to Him.

Orthodox Sunday: We shall celebrate this important feast The Triumph of Orthodoxy at St. Antonios Church (2480 Windsor Street) at 5 pm, that's Sunday March 13th.

(March 13th is also the beginning of Daylight Saving Time!)

May God bless all of us,
-- Father David

February 25, 2022

36th Sunday after Pentecost, Tone 3

Saturday, February 26, 6pm - Vespers
Sunday, February 27, 9:30am - Hours and Divine Liturgy

My Dear People

Please pray earnestly for the people of Ukraine, Russia, and surrounding countries. Pray that intelligence and compassion will rule.

May God bless you and your Russian and Ukrainian Families.

Since tomorrow will be difficult for us to get to the church due to weather conditions, on Saturday, Feb. 26, we shall start a half an hour before Vespers (5:30pm) with prayers for Ukraine and Russia.

Love
-- Father David

Please also read: https://www.oca.org/holy-synod/statements/his-beatitude-metropolitan-tikhon/statement-on-war-in-ukraine

February 19, 2022

35th Sunday after Pentecost, Tone 2

Services this weekend will be as usual:

Saturday, February 19, 6pm - Vespers
Sunday, February 20, 9:30am - Hours and Divine Liturgy (ONE SERVICE FOR EVERYONE - there's no longer separation between adults & families)

Fr. David, who is back from Newfoundland, will do these services (thank you, Fr. David!); Fr. Alexander is still isolating due to Covid in the family.

The readings are:
1 Corinthians 6:12-20
Luke 15:11-32

This is "The Sunday of the Prodigal Son". The Gospel reminds us of the journey of repentance that we should all take to meet the Heavenly Father, whom we have left and who is always waiting for us.

February 12, 2022

34th Sunday after Pentecost, Tone 1

Because of a Covid case in Fr. Alexander's family, he is required to self-isolate effective today. Therefore, services this weekend will be READER SERVICES (without a priest):

Saturday, February 12, 6pm - Reader's Vespers

Sunday, February 13, 9:30am - Reader's Third and Sixth Hours + Typika [the Typika looks like an abbreviated liturgy - with the same "variables" (hymns, Apostle and Gospel readings, etc.), but obviously without consecration of the Gifts and without communion]

NOTE: During the Sunday service, we won't do the separation into Adults vs. Families - as there is no liturgy and no communion, we do not expect many people will come.

The readings are:
2 Timothy 3:10-15
Luke 18:10-14

This is The Sunday of the Publican and the Pharisee - the beginning of the pre-Lenten period. Our journey to Pascha is about to begin!

We are also going to celebrate the Feast of the Meeting of Our Lord with Vespers on the eve of the Feast:

Monday, February 14, 6pm - Reader's Vespers for the feast of the Meeting of the Lord - Due to bad weather and driving conditions, tonight's Reader's Vespers for the feast of the Meeting of the Lord has been cancelled.

Cameron and David, thank you for taking care of these services!

You are welcome to read the following sermons about the feasts that we are celebrating this weekend:

http://www.mitras.ru/eng/eng_29.htm (Metropolitan Anthony of Sourozh on the Sunday of the Publican and the Pharisee)

https://orthochristian.com/44773.html (St. Theophan the Recluse on the Meeting of the Lord)

The coming week is FAST-FREE (no fasting on Wednesday and Friday).

Please pray for Fr. David as he is travelling to Newfoundland. He will be doing lots of services there this weekend - a liturgy, blessing of the water, confessions, and more! Fr. David, travel safely! We miss you here very much!

February 5, 2022

33th Sunday after Pentecost, Tone 8

Services this weekend will be as usual:

Saturday, February 5, 6pm - Vespers
Sunday, February 6, 9:30am - Hours and Divine Liturgy (adults)
Sunday, February 6, 11:30am - Holy Communion (families with children)

We are celebrating the Holy Martyrs & Confessors of Russia. We are also commemorating St. Xenia of Saint Petersburg.

The readings are:
1 Timothy 4:9-15 & Romans 8:28-39
Luke 19:1-10 & Luke 21:12-19

This is "Zacchaeus Sunday" - the last Sunday before the pre-Lenten period begins. We are about to start our journey to Pascha.

January 29, 2022

32th Sunday after Pentecost, Tone 7

Saturday, January 29 Vespers CANCELLED due to the snowstorm
Sunday, January 30 at 9:30am and 11:00am - Liturgy

I am going to take a break. I shall be away from the parish for the month of February. Please contact Father Alexander for anything you need remembering, of course, that Father Alexander is a full time professor teaching at the University, so he may not be able to respond immediately.

During the time I am absence, if you check your 2022 Parish Calendar (available at the candle stand by the entrance), we have:

  • Zacchaeus Sunday on February 6th
  • Sunday of the Publican and Pharisee on the 13th (this is the fast free week!!!)
  • The Meeting of the Lord on Tuesday the 15th
  • Sunday of the Prodigal Son on the 20th; and can you believe it
  • Meatfare Sunday on the 27th

Meatfare Sunday, of course, ushers in Cheesefare Week. Father Alexander will inform you if he intends to serve a Vespers on the evening of the 14th, the Eve of the Meeting of the Lord, and Liturgy on Saturday the 26th as a Commemoration of the Departed.

My goodness but how time does fly when we are having fun and feasting. I have had two house blessings which is a good beginning since I don't remember any at all last year. If you are planning to have your home blessed, please contact Father Alexander to make an appointment. The picture was taken by Peter Togni's wife Patricia. We were discussing the Liturgy and listening to Sergei Rachmaninoff's beautiful setting of the Liturgy of Saint John Chrysostom. As usual, Father David has is mouth open.

A couple of days ago, I took some old oats down to the water to feed to the ducks. When I did that, they were almost all over me and it was wonderful. I sat on a rock and spread the oats out. They seemed not to have fear and that I liked. As I continued along the path by St. George Orthodox Church, that's Father Panagiotis' parish, I slipped on some black ice and fell to the ground. A woman was approaching so I had to assure her that I was fine as I lay there, and I was fine except that I had, I discovered when I got home, grazed my right knee on the rather sharp flint like stones that make up the pathway. I sprayed Hydrogen Peroxide, which foamed like mad and put a couple of sticky plasters on it. The cormorants never come near the shore, only the ducks do that.

This Sunday is the feast of St. Anthony the Great. Please remember to pray for Father Maximos and his Parish of St. Anthony. The readings for the Commemoration of Saint Anthony are, Hebrews 13:17-21 and Saint Luke 6:17-23.

Please remember to pray for the Newfoundland Parish.

May God Bless us and keep us safe in His Love,
-- Father David

PS - I shall not be writing Bulletins during the time I am away.

January 22, 2022

31th Sunday after Pentecost, Tone 6

Saturday, January 22 at 6pm - Vespers
Sunday, January 23 at 9:30am and 11:00am - Liturgy

We made it through the Christmas fast and we have enjoyed all the wonderful foods that go with the Christmas season, in fact by being on the Julian Calendar, we probably enjoyed it all twice. I really is impossible for a family especially a family with little ones, to ignore the great commercialized lead up to one of the most holy feasts of the Church, the Birth of Christ. We are fortunate in that we can celebrate in quiet reverence and adoration, along with the Shepherds the Wise Men the sheep cows and donkeys and other animals, of the Christ Child. The down side is that with our habit of celebrating Christmas as a late evening set of services including Liturgy, we disadvantage those who work the next morning. These days industry really needs its people to continue the work. It is a difficulty. We are always 13 days out of step with the other two Orthodox Parishes in Halifax. When we claim that the Orthodox Church is ONE as Christ is ONE, it is difficult to explain that, when two of us are out of step with the other one. We must be careful. The Orthodox Church in America has both Old and New Calendar churches as does the Archdiocese of Canada. It is difficult. Personally, I would be New Calendar, but I am aware that there are Russians who are brought up knowing the Church as Old Calendar, and they depend on us to be there when and as they are used to celebrating. I am also aware that the St. Vladimir Parish was started some time ago, by Father Vladimir, as an English Mission. This all needs thinking about, and I task the Parish Council to make suggestions in consultation with Alina, who is head of the Russian School, and others.

What a pleasant surprise to see that the Vesperal Liturgy on the Eve of Theophany was quite well attended. I thought it would be Father Alexander and me, but no, others came and it was very good. The only problem being that since Father Alexander was serving, I had to be the choir and that is always a recipe for an "interesting" time. I know the music but for some reason, I can never start it right. The Liturgy on the feast itself was also well attended. We blessed water after the Liturgy (the resulting Holy Water will be available for people to fill bottles, for a while), and then Father Alexander, Subdeacon David and I went down to a rocky beach not far from my apartment and proceeded to bless the Oceans. We placed the cross and the Holy Water jug at the water line and proceeded with the short service.

A woman who was passing came and joined us, and pointed out that the cross was now under several centimeters of water and the jug was afloat. The tide had certainly and swiftly come in. David had to step into the water to recover both. The Ocean was duly blessed. When you look out over the ocean remember that it is blessed water. It will have been blessed, not just by us, but by many priests and bishops throughout the world.

In Newfoundland, some of the parishioners waited for us to bless the Ocean before taking their dip into those icy waters. It turns out that they actually didn't jump in but poured ocean water over themselves while Ivan Saika, their choir director and maintainer of the parish during the absence of a priest, sang the Troparion and Kontakion of the feast. Please pray for the Newfoundland parish, during the interregnum they are depending on us for prayer and support, if only the Newfoundland government would allow us to occasionally serve them. I have written to the NL government expressing my sorrow that their regulations prevented me from serving Christmas Liturgies for them, and this may continue. Here is the note Ivan Saika sent,

Dear Fr. David,

The blessing of the waters done in Halifax has reached our shores! With our usual protected spot under reconstruction and completely unavailable, even those normally brave enough to immerse themselves were contented with gathering the water with cups and a mild dousing accompanied by the troparion and kontakion. In the background is Dmitry Diyanov, crouching and dark against what looks like white foamy water, collecting the blessing from the boisterous bay. In the foreground is his son, Alexei.

Thank you.
I am sorry for the quality of the photo, the best of three attempts.
Happy Theophany!
Ivan

At the moment, I have only two appointments for House Blessings. Please make an appointment; the blessing takes only a few minutes and is certainly something members of the parish should do. Please contact me or Father Alexander and make arrangements. There should be a small cross, a candle, and some holy water prepared ready for the blessing. I, or Father Alexander will bring the sprinkler, and the words that we sing. All we do is sing, and sprinkle Holy Water throughout the home. This is a very old Orthodox custom.

If you flip the page of your calendar to February, you will notice that we are getting very close to Great Lent. The week following February 13th is the fast free week that precedes the fast. How time does fly when we are feasting. Pascha will be early this year and will fall on April 24th. There are four Saturdays for commemorating the departed. Please prepare your lists now and make sure that no one is missed out. Since these names are not included on the Diskos, we can remember Orthodox and non-Orthodox on the lists.

Calendars are available for purchase on the candle stand in the Narthex. Some parishes have sponsored calendars where the sponsor pays for the calendars and shipping thus making the calendars free with perhaps a small donation to parishioners. Anyone have any ideas about this?

This is the 31st Sunday after Pentecost, it is Tone 6 and the Sunday readings are Ephesians 4:7-13 and Saint Matthew 4:12-17. Please remember Saturday Vespers at 6pm and Sunday Liturgy at 9:30am for adults, then at 11:30am the Typica with conclusion of the Liturgy for families with children. Masks and distancing are prescribed by the Nova Scotia government; they have not closed us down and they have not demanded that parishioners show Covid passports for scheduled services, so I ask that you please comply. (Why does the word "comply" sound suspiciously like something borgly out of Star Trek?)

Remember: House Blessings, Calendars, something to get Holy Water in for home

May God bless us, His flock,
and keep us truly safe,
Love in Christ,
-- Father David

Ducks obviously recognize blessed water!

January 15, 2022

30th Sunday after Pentecost, Tone 5

Saturday, January 15 at 6pm - Vespers
Sunday, January 16 at 9:30am and 11:00am - Liturgy
Tuesday, January 18 at 11:00am - Vesperal Liturgy followed by the Great Blessing of Water

The custom of the Church is that on the great feast of Theophany (The Baptism of the Lord), sometimes called Epiphany, a priest is invited to every home for the blessing of the home. This is not a one off thing, it happens every year. The home does not have to be made ready for the priest, except for a candle, a cross and a bowl for the Holy Water, so there should not be any extra work involved in these blessings. The best thing would be to make an appointment with the priests and it can easily be done; there is no big fuss, it is just singing as we go around the home and sprinkle Holy Water everywhere. Please do not be afraid of this, it is easy and not time consuming at all. Please make an appointment for immediately after Theophany.

Theophany (The Baptism of the Lord) is on January 19th and is the feast when we bless Holy Water. The parish will want to bring jars to fill with Holy Water to last throughout the year. There will be two Liturgies, on Tuesday January 18th there will be a Vesperal Liturgy at 11am followed immediately by the Great Blessing of Water and then the blessing of the Atlantic Ocean. On Wednesday January 19th at 10am will be the Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom. The Wednesday liturgy will depend upon the availability of a choir, so will be confirmed by an announcement on Sunday. The readings for the Sunday before Theophany (January 16th) are, 2 Timothy 4:5-8 and Saint Mark 1:1-8 and it is Tone 5. Vespers as usual at 6pm on Saturday and Liturgy in two parts on Sunday, that's 9.30am for adults and about 11.15 for families with children.

Don't forget to bring a jar to replenish your supply of Holy Water. You will need it for the Blessing of your home and for use during the year. There is always a supply of Holy Water in the church if you should need a refill, we keep it in a large bottle in the altar, to protect its freshness. Please do not be afraid to ask.

May God bless us with His Love,
-- Father David

January 8, 2022

29th Sunday after Pentecost, Tone 4

Saturday, January 8 at 10:00am - Liturgy
Saturday, January 8 at 6pm - Vespers
Sunday, January 9 at 9:30am and 11:00am - Liturgy

Saturday January 8th at 10am - Synaxis of the Most Holy Theotokos - Liturgy for Families with children (snow permitting!). Readings for the Saturday after the Nativity, 1Timothy 6:11-16 and Saint Matthew 12:15-21 and for the Theotokos, Hebrews 2:11-18 and Saint Matthew 2:13-23

Saturday January 8th at 6pm - Vespers (snow permitting)

Sunday January 9th at 9:30am - Liturgy with Communion for adults followed at 11am "Typica" with Communion for families with children. Readings for the Sunday after the Nativity (Tone 4) Galatians 1:11-19 and Saint Matthew 2:13-23

Sunday is also the commemoration of the Proto-martyr and Archdeacon Stephen, readings Acts of the Apostles 6:8-7:5,47-60 and Saint Matthew 21:33-42

This week is a fast-free week enjoy it!

In Christ,
-- Father David

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