Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,

Today is the day when we remember the Life Giving Cross. It is made of wood, but has been endowed with enormous power when our Lord was crucified upon it. Indeed, it is a pious belief that the Cross corresponded to the Trtee in the Garden of Eden. St. Romanos the Melodist hymned beautifully of this in "On the Adoration at the Cross":

“The Most High planted in the middle of Paradise The thrice blessed wood, the gift of life for us, In order that, in approaching it, Adam might find eternal and immortal life, But he did not strive earnestly to know this life, And he failed to attain it, and revealed death. However, the robber, seeing how the plant in Eden Had been beautifully transplanted in Golgotha, Recognized the life in it and said to himself: `This is what my father lost formerly In Paradise.'”

This weekend we will reflect upon this. We are transferring Divine Liturgy for the Feast to Sunday, and you will find it to a beautiful and deeply meaningful service.

1. The coming week: First, due to circumstances beyond my control, I need to postpone tomorrow's adult education class. We will reschedule it for 4:00 pm on Saturday, September 22.

We will continue, however, with Great Vespers on Saturday evening at 5:00 p.m., and Divine Liturgy Sunday morning at 10:00 a.m. We will serve small compline with the appropriate canon on Wednesday evening at 6:00 p.m. As mentioned, on Saturday, September 22, we will have our next adult education class at 4:00 p.m.

2. Remember that our parish annual meeting will be on Sunday, October 28. Please give us your pledge of support as soon as possible.

3. Yesterday, I received a package from Greece, with two very beautiful items for the Church. There is nothing to say who they are from however! I would like to be able to thank the donor, at least privately, so if it was you, please let me know if you don't mind.

4. As it stands now, Pani and I will be gone on October 7. Subdeacon Maximus will conduct our service that day.

5. Please pray for all of those affected by Hurricane Florence. First and foremost, of course, all of the people, but also spare a prayer for pets and wildlife that may be affected. We ourselves are fortunate that we will receive only a very slight brush from this terrible storm.

I hope to see everyone this weekend!

In Christ,

Fr. James