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Our month of August is the last month of the Church Year. Like all things in the Church, this last month of the Year is an icon of our time with God in Christ - it is both an end and a beginning. As an end, the events of August show us the goal of our Christian pilgrimage; simultaneously as a beginning, the events of August communicate to us the grace of God necessary to start and continue each and every day of our lives until we reach that goal of the Kingdom of God.
August begins with the Dormition Fast. This is a two week season prior to the Feast of the Dormition (lit., "Falling-asleep") of the Mother of God (Aug. 15). Just as the Ever-virgin Mary, Birthgiver-of-God (Gk., Theotokos), fell asleep in the flesh, we all anticipate with faith the day of our own death in the body. But we look to that day in hope of the resurrection in Jesus Christ our Lord (see 1 Thes. 4:13-18). The Virgin Mary is the great example of what it means to be a Christian. She peacefully fell asleep in the body and was bodily assumed into heaven three days later to join her Son and God where she now intercedes for the world and its salvation. The Church possesses no bodily relics of the Virgin Mary, no tomb, because her body is not here! Her end gives us confidence of our end, to be joined with Christ Jesus in the communion which not even death can interrupt.
Like stars in a constellation, three other feasts especially are arranged with the Dormition to comprise the Church's picture of our end and beginning. The Feast of the Transfiguration of Christ (Aug. 6) reveals the glory of God in Christ enabling us to endure the Cross in the hope of the Resurrection (Matt. 17:1-9). The Glorification of St. Herman of Alaska (Aug. 9), the first Orthodox saint to be recognized as such in America, bears witness to the victorious nature of a life of humble love. The Beheading of the St. John the Baptist (Aug. 29) proves the truth of Jesus' words, "He who endures to the end will be saved" (Matt. 24:13). The goal is the Kingdom of God, and as we consider this goal in all our prayers and observances, this goal becomes our beginning each and every day God gives us in this life, for we journey in Christ who gives Himself to us.
If you are interested in the Orthodox Faith, we welcome you to come and meet with us and pick up many interesting and informative pamplets that are available for you! If you should have any questions please feel free to call me at the Church at (330) 372-3895.
Thank you for visiting our website and we look forward to seeing you soon!
September 29, from 11 AM to 7 PM
Ethnic Foods & Homemade Sausage; Bake Sale; Live Entertainment (St. Nicholas Balalaika Orchestra, St. Demetrios Greek Dancers, et al.); Orthodox Vendors; Church Tours; Games for Kids w/Bounce-house
Come and explore our Orthodox Faith and Church!