Mass Schedule – Advent I (November 30, 2014)
01, St. Andrew, Apostle
04, St. Clement of Alexandria
06, St. Nicholas, Bishop of Myra
+All Saints Men’s Group will meets each Tuesday at 7:00 a.m. in undercroft.
+ Most references to Andrew in the New Testament simply include him on a list of the Twelve Apostles, or group him with his brother, Simon Peter. But he appears acting as an individual three times in the Gospel of John. When a number of Greeks, no doubt God-fearers, wished to speak with Jesus, they approached Philip, who told Andrew, and the two of them tell Jesus (Jn 12:20-22). It most likely that both Philip & Andrew were approached because they have Greek names. Before Jesus fed the Five Thousand, it was Andrew who declared, “Here is a lad with five barley loaves and two fish.” (Jn 6:8f) And the first two disciples whom John reported as following Jesus (Jn 1:35-42) are Andrew and another disciple whom John does not name, but who is commonly supposed to be John himself — John never mentions himself by name, which was then a widespread literary convention. Having met Jesus, Andrew then found his brother Simon and brought him to Jesus. Thus, on each occasion when Andrew is mentioned it is because he was instrumental in bringing others to Jesus. Just as Andrew was the first of the Apostles, so his feast is taken to be the beginning of the Church Year. The First Sunday of Advent is defined to be the Sunday on or nearest his feast. Several centuries after the death of Andrew, some of his relics were brought by a missionary named Rule to Scotland, to a place then known as Fife. For this reason, Andrew is the patron of Scotland.
+ Clement, a native of Athens, was converted to Christianity by Pantaenus, founder of the Catechetical School at Alexandria, the intellectual capital of the Mediterranean world, and succeeded his teacher as head of the school about 180 and for over 20 years he labored effectively as an apologist for the faith and catechist of the faithful. He regarded the science and philosophy of the Greeks as being, like the Torah of the Hebrews, a preparation for the Gospel, and the curriculum of his School undertook to give his students both a knowledge the Gospel of Christ and a best liberal education of their day. His speculative theology, his scholarly defense of the faith and his willingness to engage non-Christian scholars in the academy helped to establish the good reputation of Christianity in the world of learning and prepare the way for his pupil, Origen, the most eminent theologian of Greek Christianity. Clement is not on the present Roman calendar, but is on the Eastern calendar and many modern revisions of the Anglican calendar. His influence has been considerable.
+ St. Nicholas, aka The Wonderworker, Bishop of Myra was born in 270 and lived in Myra which is part of Turkey today, but then it was entirely Greek in culture. He was the only son of very wealthy Christian parents who died when he was very young. He was then taken in by his uncle also named Nicholas, who was a bishop in a neighboring city. Nicholas was tonsured (initiation into a monastic life which involves shaving all or part of one’s scalp) and later he was ordained to the priesthood. Nicholas was one of the bishop who gather in 325 for the First Council of Nicaea to resolved the Arian issue. Nicholas was known for his Orthodoxy and steadfast anti-Arian defense of our Lord’s full divinity. Legend has it that a poor man in his diocese had three daughters and he could not afford a dowry for them which meant they could not get married and thus would end up as beggars or worse. Hearing of the girls’ plight, Nicholas decided to help them, but being too modest to help the family in public (or to save them the humiliation of accepting charity), he went to the house under the cover of night and threw three purses (one for each daughter) filled with gold coins through the window opening into the house. Another version has him throwing one purse for three consecutive nights and yet another version has him throwing the purses over a period of three years, each time the night before one of the daughters comes of age. Invariably, the third time the father lies in wait, trying to discover the identity of their benefactor. In one version the father confronts the saint, only to have Saint Nicholas say it is not him he should thank, but God alone. In another version, Nicholas learns of the poor man’s plan and drops the third bag down the chimney instead; a variant holds that the daughter had washed her stockings that evening and hung them over the embers to dry, and that the bag of gold fell into the stocking.
+ On Monday, December 8, the Monday Morning Bible Study will meet to continue a study of “The Miracle of the Scarlet Thread” by Richard Booker. Booker’s book looks closely at the theme of the blood covenant which God made with Abraham and its fruition in Jesus Christ. It demonstrates in clear language how the Old and New Testaments tell one complete story. For further information contact Priscilla King at firstname.lastname@example.org.
+ This coming Wednesday is Agape & Christian Education and I hope you all can come out as well as bring a friend. Thanks goes out to all our cooks, teachers, and helpers and especially to Jackie Jamison for her leadership in organizing and developing our Wednesday Agape. Jackie says, “Things will proceed similarly to last year with three classes led by the same teachers (Sr. Lynda for the preschoolers, me for the elementary kids, and Charlie for upper elementary and middle school). I want to encourage parents to encourage kids not to “age up” to Charlie’s class before fourth grade. Even though that class right now is small, if we let the age creep downward, it won’t serve its purpose as a place for older kids who do end up coming! All teachers please remember that class is over at 7:15!
+ The Holy Communion will be celebrated Monday & Wednesday this week & then again this Saturday. The Church offices are closed the other days.
+All Saints parishioner may obtain a Mass card from the Church office. A Mass card is a greeting card given to someone to inform him or her that a deceased loved one or friend was remembered and prayed for at a weekly Mass. It is a specifically Christian way to express one’s love. Call Julie McDermott at the Church office (434-979-2842) and she will help you fill out the form. The celebrant will sign the card and we will mail it from the Church to the family of the loved one.