Mass Schedule – Epiphany III (January 22, 2017)
25, Conversion of St. Paul
26, St. Polycarp,
27, St. John Chrysostom
+ Wednesday Agape & Christian Education for all ages is into the Epiphany term and will meet this Wednesday, January 25, 2017. We will begin serving the meal at 5:45 and after a time fellowship and classes for all age groups. All blessings!
+ Polycarp was Bishop of Smyrna (today known as Izmir), a city on the west coast of Turkey. The letters to the “seven churches in Asia” at the beginning of the book of Revelation include a letter to the church in Smyrna, identifying it as a church undergoing persecution. Polycarp is said to have known the Apostle John, and to have been instructed by him in the Christian faith. Polycarp, in his turn, was known to Irenaeus, who later became Bishop of Lyons in what is now France. We have (1) Irenaeus’s brief memoir of Polycarp; (2) a letter to Polycarp from Ignatius of Antioch, written around 115 AD when Ignatius was passing through Turkey, being sent in chains to Rome to be put to death; (3) a letter from Polycarp to the church at Philippi, written at the same time; and (4) an account of the arrest, trial, conviction, and martyrdom of Polycarp, written after his death probably by a parishioner who claims to have been an eyewitness. Polycarp was denounced to the government, arrested, and tried on the charge of being a Christian. When the proconsul urged him to save his life by cursing Christ, he replied: “Eighty-six years I have served him, and he never did me any wrong. How can I blaspheme my King who saved me?” The magistrate was reluctant to kill a gentle old man, but he had no choice. Polycarp was sentenced to be burned. As he waited for the fire to be lighted, he prayed, “Lord God Almighty, Father of your blessed and beloved child Jesus Christ, through whom we have received knowledge of you, God of angels and hosts and all creation, and of the whole race of the upright who live in your presence: I bless you that you have thought me worthy of this day and hour, to be numbered among the martyrs and share in the cup of Christ, for resurrection to eternal life, for soul and body in the incorruptibility of the Holy Spirit. Among them may I be accepted before you today, as a rich and acceptable sacrifice, just as you, the faithful and true God, have prepared and foreshown and brought about. For this reason and for all things I praise you, I bless you, I glorify you, through the eternal heavenly high priest Jesus Christ, your beloved child, through whom be glory to you, with him and the Holy Spirit, now and for the ages to come. Amen.” The fire was then lit and shortly thereafter a soldier stabbed Polycarp to death by order of the magistrate. His friends gave his remains honorable burial, and wrote an account of his death to other churches.
+ All Saints Men’s Group will meets each Tuesday at 7:00 a.m. in undercroft.
+ Our Monday Morning Bible Study is also into its Epiphany term. The Bible study meets each Monday morning at 10:00 a.m. For further information contact Priscilla King at [email protected]
+ The word Epiphany, which Church Season we are in, takes its name from the Greek epiphania, which references a visitation, a manifestation, an unveiling of God before his people. The first idea of the feast of the Epiphany is the manifestation of Christ as the Son of God. “Begotten before the daystar and before all ages, the Lord our Savior is this day made manifest to the world.” The feast unites three events in the life of Christ when His divinity, as it were, shines through His humanity: the adoration of the Magi; the baptism of Christ in the Jordan; and the first miracle at the wedding feast of Cana. Moreover, at Epiphany the Church looks forward to the majestic coming of Christ on the “youngest day” when His manifestation as God will be complete. We also pray for his manifestation in our selves, our souls, and our bodies, that we may know the “fruition of thy glorious Godhead” as our perfect end. The Gospels of our Lord’s dialogue with the rabbis in the Temple and his baptism are appointed for the 1st and 2nd Sunday of the Epiphany. The marriage at Cana and Gospels that show the divine power of our Lord in some of His most striking miracles are appointed for the later Sundays of the Epiphany season.
+ The Holy Communion is celebrated Monday through Saturday at 12:15 p.m.
+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.