Friday, February 5, 2016

Bulletin February 7-14


CANA SUNDAY

Great Lent is a  time for change, for transformation. The Maronite Church begins Great Lent with Cana Sunday, a commemoration of the transformation of water into wine at the wedding feast of Cana at Galilee. This change prepares us for the evening when we change wine into his blood and bread into his body.

Mary had only to mention to Jesus that something was wrong: “They have no wine.” Jesus understood that his Mother was not simply making an observation, but was seeking his powerful intervention. On her part, Mary was confident that he would listen to her. She had given birth to him and had lived with him for thirty years, so she had faith in him. At first, Jesus responded with an apparent refusal, “Woman, (a term of respect which he would also use on the cross) how does this concern of yours involve me?” The reason for his response was that his hour had not yet come, namely the hour of his death and resurrection, after which he would answer all the prayers of his Mother.

Jesus came into the world for a definite purpose and task, as we all do. He did not see his life in terms of the immediate needs of any particular moment, but only in terms of his purpose and the eternal plan of the Father. All of his deeds had to correspond and lead to the ultimate fulfillment of his life.

Mary knew that her prayer would not be refused; she told them to do whatever he told them. Mary trusted in her Son and her request was fulfilled. She told the servants as she tells all of us: do whatever my Son tells you.

Jesus instructed the servants to fill the six water pots. The number six might be significant because in the    mentality of the time, six was an imperfect number. (Seven was considered as perfection.) The six water pots can represent the imperfection of the old law, which Jesus is to fill with the wine of the Gospel and of his grace. The imperfection of law was transformed into the perfection of grace. The imperfection of law was transformed into the perfection of grace. These jars held 180 gallons of water, which was to be transformed into excellent wine. What was originally lacking is now to be found superabundance.

Aside from the rich theological significance of the transformation of water into wine, let us reflect on the    simplicity and “homeliness” of the act. Jesus knew that the lack of wine would be source of embarrassment to the groom and misfortune for the guests. He did not rejoice in the misfortune of others, but used his great power to save a simple man of Cana from humiliation. Let us imitate his example and be concerned with the simple needs of those around us and how we can fulfill them.

 A BLESSED JOURNEY OF LENT!
EPARCHY OF OUR LADY OF LEBANON OF LOS ANGELES REGULATION FOR GREAT LENT
Then to all Christ said, “Whoever wishes to be my follower must deny his very self, take up his cross each day, and follow in my steps” (Lk 9:23).
The Church has always helped us fulfill these words of Jesus by prescribing very definite penance for all Catholics. Accordingly, the Pope, the Patriarch and the American bishops have outlined obligatory fast and abstinence. Our Eparchial Regulations are:
· Ash Monday (February 8, 2016) and Great Friday (Good) Friday (March 25, 2016) are days of abstinence for all Catholics over the age of 14. On these two days, fast as well as abstinence is also obligatory for those from the ages of 18-59. Abstinence means abstinence from meat and meat products. Fast means no food from midnight to noon – except for plain water. No Catholic will lightly excuse himself or herself from this obligation.
· All other Fridays of Lent are days of abstinence from meat (and meat products) for everyone 14 years of age and older. Here again Catholics will not hold themselves lightly excused, but if there is a serious health problem, this obligation would not apply.
· Fasting from midnight to noon daily is optional.
· During this Holy Year of Mercy we are also asked to use every Friday to perform a “different gesture” of mercy (Matthew 25-31-45 gives us excellent examples).
· We strive to make all days of Lent a time of prayer and penance.
 
Benediction of the Cross
The Benediction of the Cross will take place every Friday evening during Lent at 7pm.  Following the Benediction there will be a potluck supper in  the Lebanon Room. During Lent, please remember to abstain from meat on all Fridays and to fast and abstain on Ash Monday and Great Friday.
Benediction of the Cross Speakers:
Friday February 12: Chorbishop Moussa Joseph
Friday February 19: Bishop Emeritus Robert Shaheen
Friday February 26: Bishop Edward Rice
Friday March 4: Monsignor Michael Witt
Friday March 11: Deacon Louis Peters
Friday March 18: Chorbishop Moussa Joseph
Schedule of Friday Lenten Meals:
February 12: Ladies Society             March 4: Faith and Heritage
February 19: Men’s Society             March 11: Kitchen Volunteers
February 26: Choir                             March 18: Parish Council
 
Altar Servers
As we have announced in the past, we are still in great need of altar servers at ALL MASSES. We are looking for all interested BOYS AND GIRLS that would like to serve at mass to send an email to Tony or David. We would love to have more servers and can teach you everything you need to know. NO PREVIOUS EXPERIENCE NECESSARY
Tony (asimon@simonlawpc.com); David (wahby@sbcglobal.net)
 
New Officers
Men’s Society:  Jason Oesterlei (President), Jim Risk (Vice-President), Sir David Mueckl (Treasurer),  Don Leong (Secretary)
Ladies Society: Teri Elking (President),  Jeannie Fratto (Vice-President), Maggie Risk (Treasurer), Shelly Vitale (Secretary)
Congratulations and Best Wishes to all the New Officers!
 
Ladies Society Fashion Show
Mark your calendars for the Fashion Show Sunday March 6th. Tickets will go on sale Sunday February 14th.  We need models ( Women, men, and children of all ages), vendors, and volunteers to help. If anyone is interested please contact Gina Fanetti at gfanetti5@gmail.com
 

Kitchen Scoop
The Kitchen is in need of help preparing for Palm Sunday and Wednesday  Lunches. We depend on our Parish Volunteers to help make the Wednesday lunches successful and any time you can give will be very helpful.
Rolling Cabbage Rolls on Mondays @ 8 am,
Rolling Grape Leaves Feb 16th @ 4:30pm and Feb 17th @ 9am also March 8th and  March 22nd @ 4:30pm,
Making Kibbi Aras on Tuesdays @ 8 am, Preparing to serve lunch on Wednesdays from 8 am-11:00am,
Serving Wednesday Luncheon from 11am-2pm.
Beginning Wednesday February 3rd, the lunch line will be open until 1:30 pm and carry-outs will remain open until 2:00pm. The Cedars will be closed for lunch on Wednesday February 17th, but the kitchen will remain open Mon-Wed to prepare for Palm Sunday.
 
 
ST. MARON
All that is known about Maron, the spiritual father and protector of the Maronites comes from Theodoret, the bishop of Cyr. In approximately 444, Theodoret undertook the project of writing a religious history about his region. Theodoret never knew Maron personally, but only through the disciples of this holy man. He described Maron as “the one who has planted  for God the garden which flourishes now in the region of Cyr.” Little is known of the birth or youth of  Maron because Theodoret was unconcerned about that aspect of his life. He felt that Maron was a man born not for this world, but for heaven. In his description of the beginning of Maron’s life, Theodoret asserts that Maron had “already increased the number of saints in heaven.”
According to history, Maron was never satisfied with the ordinary practices of asceticism, but was “always seeking for new ways to accumulate all the treasures of wisdom.”
Maron was the spiritual leader not only of the hermits who lived near him, but indeed of all  of the Christian faithful in the area. He used to counsel them, heal their bodily and spiritual ills. All of these apostolic endeavors manifested the wisdom and holiness of the hermit Maron.
Some hold the opinion that Maron and John Chrysostom studied together at Antioch before 398 and that the famous   letter sent by John Chrysostom was indeed sent to this hermit Maron and not to some other an anchorite with the same name. If the monk referred to in this letter if from the region of Cyr, it is indeed our spiritual father, Maron.
The date of Maron’s death is placed somewhere between 407 and 423. Because of his great popularity among the people, riots broke out at the time of his death because everyone wanted to save his remains in their village.
The Maronite Church formerly celebrated the feast of this great saint on January 5th. (This is the day in which the Church of Kfarhai was consecrated in his honor.) However, in the seventeenth century, the feast was transferred to  February 9th. Lebanon has proclaimed Maron as its patron saint and Pope Benedict XIV granted a plenary indulgence to everyone who visited a Maronite church on February 9th.
The gospel tells us that a tree is known by its fruits and we know from Theodoret that the garden of Maron flourished after his death. One is able to number approximately twenty saints among Maron’s disciples, three of whom are women. Theodoret describes these disciples of Maron with these words: “These anchorites were virtuous and heroic, totally   dedicated to a life of contemplative prayer. They were strangers to any other consideration in the world. They were   obedient to Church authority and tried to imitate their predecessor in their exercises of austerity. At times, their acts of penance and mortification were excessive, but they were always obedient to ecclesiastical authority.”
After the Council of Chalcedon, Bishop Theodoret worked to construct the famous Monastery of St. Maron. In addition to being a stronghold for the defense of the teachings of the Council of Chalcedon, this monastery was for a long time the center of the cultural and theological heritage of Antioch.
 
St. Maron Prayer
O Lord, accept the prayers we offer in memory of our Father, St. Maron. Bless and  protect the people who bear your name. Make us worthy of his holy legacy that we may carry the message of your Gospel throughout the world. Grant faithfulness to his people and courage to his inheritance.
 
 
 
 


 
 
 
 
 
 

 

Friday, January 29, 2016

Bulletin January 31-February 7, 2016


SUNDAY OF THE FAITHFUL DEPARTED

Today the Maronite Church commemorates all the faithful Christians who have departed this life in the faith. This feast is the Maronite Church’s equivalent to the feast of All Souls in the Latin Church.

As we have just prayed in the Hoosoyo, we ask our Lord Jesus Christ to  welcome all our deceased brothers and sisters, who have been nourished with his body and blood, into his kingdom of light. Not knowing the state of perfection they have achieved in their lives, we commend them to the mercy of God with hope and expectation.

 It is a Christian obligation for us to help our brothers and sisters through our prayers and the offering of the Divine Mysteries for their salvation. For though they have not yet reached the joy of the righteous and the just, they are called to ultimately enter the kingdom of light and peace. Our intercession can bring them nearer to the day of eternal happiness.

We should pray in a special way for those who have been near us, our relatives, friends, and benefactors who have died. At the same time we should pray for the deceased members of our parish and for all the departed who have no one to pray for them.

We commend the faithful departed to the Lord that by his cross He may lead them into the eternal wedding feast, and newly arrived in God’s kingdom may they intercede before him on our behalf.

 
The Power of Confession
As part of the Year of Mercy, upon the request of our Holy Father Pope Francis, we need to reconcile with our Heavenly Father through the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Realizing that approaching the Sacrament of Reconciliation is a difficult challenge for some of our people, and truly wanting to help you calm your fears and concerns, I have obtained brochures and CDs that are available in the vestibule of the Cathedral for you to reflect upon. I truly desire that these brochures and CDs will assist you and ease your mind for the Sacrament of Reconciliation.
 
Feast of Saint Maron 
Sunday, February 7, 2016
The Feast of Saint Maron is a special and Holy celebration in the Maronite Catholic Church. Our Cathedral Parish will celebrate the Feast of Saint Maron on Sunday, February 7th, with one Mass at 10:00 am, immediately followed by a lunch at The Cedars in honor of our revered Saint Maron. The menu for the lunch will be Lebanese food and tickets are being sold in advance for $15. Children 8 years and younger are free. This Sunday, January 31st, will be the last day to purchase tickets before the event. Let us all plan to participate in this wonderful celebration on Sunday, February 7th, the day before the Holy Season of Lent begins on Ash Monday. For additional information, please contact the Parish Office or John and Margie Simon.
 
Ladies Society Fashion Show
Mark your calendars for the Fashion Show Sunday March 6th. Tickets will go on sale Sunday February 14th.  We need models ( Women, men, and children of all ages), vendors, and volunteers to help. If anyone is  interested please contact Gina Fanetti at gfanetti5@gmail.com
 
SUBDEACON CANDIDATE’S CORNER
As part of our formation, one of the goals of our ministry is to help parishioners develop a greater understanding of our rich Maronite Catholic History and Heritage. In furtherance of that goal we will be adding a short explanation to each bulletin about some aspect of our faith. This continues the discussion about our Maronite Liturgy.
Acceptance of the Offerings
Representing the Church, the celebrant accepts the gifts of the faithful. Since our offerings signify our desire to reach out to God, and we pray that God will reach out to us in acceptance, they must be sincere and represent our inner intentions. Spiritual writers remind us that in the Bible beginning with the story of Cain and Abel, God has embraced those who come to Him in honesty of intention, and has rejected the offerings of those who are insincere. The prophets constantly caution us that true worship is not a matter of externals, but begins with purity of heart.

The celebrant's prayer of offering also reminds us that our generosity is always exceeded by God's generosity. It concludes by  praying: "... in exchange for their perishable gifts, grant them the gift of life and entrance into your kingdom."
Commemorations
At every Divine Service, it is the whole church, the mystical Body of Christ that is at worship. In this prayer we recall that our existence as a redeemed community is due to God's plan of salvation achieved in Jesus Christ. Assembled with us is the whole communion of saints from Adam to the present time, and the Blessed Virgin Mary is especially remembered. As we recall those who have gone before us, we petition God to remember our dead and to remember us, the living, those present at this Divine Service and those who were unable to attend.
Incensation
With the gifts placed at the altar, the celebrant incenses the gifts, the altar and the faithful again as a symbol of purification. We pray that our gifts and especially we, ourselves be rendered worthy to participate in this sacrifice.
Taken from A Commentary on the Holy Mysteries: The Holy Mystery of Offering (Qorbono)
By Chorbishop Seely Beggiani (https://www.stmaron.org/divliturgy.html)
If you have questions about Catholic teaching or our Maronite tradition, or would like to suggest a topic, please email us or tell us the next time we see you. Thank you and God Bless.
David Wahby (wahby@sbcglobal.net) and Tony Simon (asimon@simonlawpc.com)
 
Altar Servers
As we have announced in the past, we are still in great need of altar servers at ALL MASSES. We are looking for all interested BOYS AND GIRLS that would like to serve at mass to send an email to Tony or David. We would love to have more servers and can teach you everything you need to know. NO PREVIOUS EXPERIENCE NECESSARY
 
Sympathy
Sincere sympathy to Dr. Edmond Abrahamian and Dr. Jacqueline R. Batanian on the loss of their beloved mother and mother-in-law, Mrs. Alice Awad, who passed away in Lebanon a few weeks ago. A memorial  40-day liturgy will be celebrated at St. Raymond’s Cathedral on Sunday February 14th at 11am. May the Lord grant her eternal rest and peace. May He bestow upon her family the blessings of comfort and consolation at this time of sorrow.
 
Men’s Society Meeting
The Men’s Society will hold their monthly meeting on Thursday February 4th beginning with a liturgy at 6pm in Church, dinner at 6:30pm in the Lebanon room, followed by the meeting.
All members are invited to attend!
 
Ladies Society Meeting
The Ladies Society will hold their monthly meeting on Tuesday February 2nd at 7pm in the Lebanon room. All members are invited to attend!
 
Kitchen Scoop
Making Tabouli Monday February 1st @ 8 am, Rolling Cabbage Rolls or Grape Leaves Mondays @ 8 am,
Making Kibbi Aras on Tuesdays @ 8 am, Preparing to serve lunch on Wednesdays @ 8 am-11:00am,
Serving Wednesday Luncheon @ 11am-2pm.
Beginning Wednesday February 3rd, the lunch line will be open until 1:30 pm and carry-outs will remain open until 2:00pm. The Cedars will be closed for lunch on Wednesday February 17th, but the kitchen will remain open  Mon-Wed to prepare for Palm Sunday.
In preparation for the Feast of St. Maron, we will be making small meat pies and kibbi aras on Thursday  February 4th at 8:30 am. If anyone is able to help that day please let Kathleen, Denise, or Gina know. 
Thank you!