Sunday of the 7th Ecumenical Council
The Reading is from Luke 8:5-15
“He who has ears to hear, let him hear.”
The Lord said this parable: “A sower went out to sow his seed; and as he sowed, some fell along the path, and was trodden under foot, and the birds of the air devoured it. And some fell on the rock; and as it grew up, it withered away, because it had no moisture. And some fell among thorns; and the thorns grew with it and choked it. And some fell into good soil and grew, and yielded a hundredfold.” And when his disciples asked him what this parable meant, he said, “To you it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of God; but for others they are in parables, so that seeing they may not see, and hearing they may not understand. Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God. The ones along the path are those who have heard; then the devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts, that they may not believe and be saved. And the ones on the rock are those who, when they hear the word, receive it with joy; but these have no root, they believe for a while and in time of temptation fall away. And as for what fell among the thorns, they are those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by the cares and riches and pleasures of life, and their fruit does not mature. And as for that in the good soil, they are those who, hearing the word, hold it fast in an honest and good heart, and bring forth fruit with patience.” As he said these things, he cried out “He who has ears to hear, let him hear.”
Bible Reflection: â€śHe Who Has Ears, Let Him Hearâ€ť
There are certain passages in the Gospels that contain a serious warning for us. Several times Christ says, â€śHe who has ears, let him hearâ€ť â€” in other words, be careful how you listen. In another place He reminds us that we shall answer for what we have heard, how we have listened, how we have reacted and what we have made of it in our lives.
At every Liturgy we listen to the Gospel, to the words of Christ Himself, or of His disciples, and we are faced with the question â€” how do we listen and what do we hear? Perhaps we listen attentively, our hearts may even be stirred and for a moment we may be inspired; but then, having admired the beauty and wisdom of Christâ€™s sayings, we may leave the church and not put them into practice.
Are we capable of listening to Christâ€™s words? Are we capable of hearing them, receiving them in our hearts, making an effort of will and incorporating them into our lives? Or are we not?
Therefore Christ warns us to take care how we listen and how we care, because a time will come when the words we have heard will judge us â€” not because we have heard the word of truth, Godâ€™s word, but because having responded to it as truth and beauty and inspiration and having admired it we put it aside in order to attend to it sometime later, at leisure. And that is exactly how such words become the empty, inert words of which our lives are so full. And we shall answer for them.
Let us then listen to the words of the Gospel, even to the words of a sermon, in such a way that they should penetrate not only our minds and hearts but our whole lives, so that what we have heard may become living, that through us someone may see the light of Christâ€™s light, may feel the warmth of Christâ€™s love, and everything be renewed around us.
– Metropolitan Anthony Bloom (1914-2003)
Wisdom of the Fathers:
His is truly the Sower of all that is good, and we are His farm. The whole harvest of spiritual fruits is by Him and from Him. He taught us this when He said, ‘Without me you can do nothing.’
St. Cyril of Alexandria, Commentary on Luke, Homily 41. Taken from: Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture. Vol: Luke. Downer’s Grove: Intervarsity Press, 132.
Todayâ€™s Events, Tomorrowâ€™s Announcements:
Teaching Liturgy Sunday Today
Children of all ages are encouraged to come to the solea (in front of the iconostasis) to come close to the table and witness the progression of the liturgical service. Fr. Constantine will pause periodically during the liturgy to explain the historical background and theological significance to these segments.
Todayâ€™s Coffee Hour Fellowship:
After Divine Liturgy, parishioners gather around the social hall for fellowship with members of the parish over coffee and some delicious. If you would like to sponsor coffee hour by yourself or with a friend or family member, please write your name on the sheet that is mounted on the wall outside the kitchen door.
Save the Dates:
November 4: General Assembly
December 1: St. Georgeâ€™s Christmas Bazaar
Attending to the Needs of Others:
If you or anyone you know is sick, please see or contact Fr. Constantine directly cell phone: 978-314-4992 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sacraments and Other Services:
(Baptism, Chrismation, Confession, Communion, Holy Matrimony, and Holy Unction, 40-day Churching of the Mother and Child, Memorial Service or House Blessings) Please see or contact Fr. Constantine.
Receiving Communion in the Orthodox Church:
The Eucharist, the principal sacrament mystery of the Orthodox Church, is not so much a text to be studied, but rather an experience of communion with the Living God in which prayer, music, gestures, the material creation, art and architecture come into full orchestration. The Eucharist is a celebration of faith which touches not only the mind but also the emotions and the senses.
Fr. Thomas Fitzgerald
Facebook: St. George Greek Orthodox Church- Keene, NH https://www.facebook.com/events/708181219561795/
St. George Greek Orthodox Church Website: http://stgeorgekeene.org/