25th Sunday after Pentecost


On November 26, on the 25th Sunday after Pentecost, as well as feast of St. John Chrysostom, we had a beautiful celebration at St. George Church. Our Rector, Archpriest Igor Tarasov served the Divine Liturgy.

After the Scripture readings the Rector preached a homily in Russian. He addressed the parable of the Good Samaritan contained in the assigned Gospel lesson and pointed out that this parable reveals for us the mystery of eternal life. We need to show mercy, love and compassion to inherit eternal life. We need to help those who need, regardless whether these people are our friends or enemies. Unfortunately, people are divided and prejudiced. And we are much more capable of persecuting others. Commemorating St. John Chrysostom we should recall that he was persecuted at the end of his life – persecuted not by some pagans, heretics or atheists, but by Orthodox Christians and his fellow citizens. Being a good shepherd of his flock and an honest preacher, Holy Father John was hated by the powerful elite of Constantinople. He was exiled and died far from home because his enemies forgot the attitude of Good Samaritan, but lived by sinful desires. Christ teaches to see our neighbor in everyone who is in need, even in an enemy. If we are not going to have hatred in our hearts, we will be along with God, and God will be with us, thus we are going to have eternal life.

The choir prayerfully performed the hymns dedicated to St. John Chrysostom during preparation for Holy Communion.

Following the Liturgy dismissal the Rector preached a brief sermon in English conveying the main ideas of his Russian homily. He also wished everybody a good beginning of the Nativity fast which starts in two days.

After the service the Rector and parishioners enjoyed delicious meals including fish soup, pelmeni and turkey continuing celebration of the past Thanksgiving Day in parish environment.

24th Sunday after Pentecost


On November 19, on the 24th Sunday after Pentecost, St. George Parish family gathered for a nice liturgical celebration. Our service was headed by the Rector, Archpriest Igor Tarasov. After the Gospel lesson of the Divine Liturgy he preached the following homily in English:

“The Gospel lesson assigned for today is describing two miracles of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ: healing of the woman with an issue of blood and resurrection of a girl who just died. Interestingly, both these miracles were performed on women, the one of which was adult and having specific female health problems, and another was a young girl, a 12 year-old, who have just reached the age of maturity according to the Jewish law. Therefore, the Lord Jesus shows His abundant love and immeasurable mercy to the women, just as He shows them to all human kind.”
“Any Gospel lesson can be compared to a treasure chest containing a lot of precious stones and jewels. Any Gospel story can be studied and interpreted in many different aspects. As we said, today’s Gospel, apart from revealing the great power of our Lord to heal the sick and to raise the dead, shows us the Savior’s mercy to the women. And if we reflect further, we may learn something more.”
“First of all, we can learn from Jairus, the ruler of the synagogue whose daughter was sick and died. Our Lord preached in that synagogue in Capernaum but many of the people present there did not accept His teaching. They looked for any reason to condemn Jesus, to find a fault in Him. But one of them, Jairus, came to Jesus, fell at His feet and begged Him to come to his house to heal his daughter (Lk. 8, 41). He later was so patient that he waited when Jesus healed the woman in the crowd and spoke with her. Imagine, his daughter was dying, but Jairus never pushed Jesus to hurry up. He patiently waited believing in the power of Christ. And the Lord knowing his heart, granted Him mercy according to his faith. And the faith of Jairus was not in vain: his great sorrow had changed to a great joy. Therefore, we can learn from Jairus to be patient, to be trusting God and believing in God’s power and mercy.”
“Another aspect of today’s Gospel is about the healing of the woman with an issue of blood. She became healed by touching the hem of the Lord’s garment. Thus she believed so much that she did not even ask Jesus, but only touched his cloth. Apart from teaching us about the importance of faith, this example serves us as a foundation of our belief in the holy objects, the icons and especially the holy relics of the Saints. Let us recall how the shadow of Holy Apostle Peter or the garments of Holy Apostle Paul could heal the sick. Let us recall how many miracles were done through the miraculous icons of the Most Holy Mother of God, through Her precious garments and even Her precious belt! Every icon and every piece of cloth belonging to a holy person contains the divine grace given to us if we venerate it with faith.”
“The third reflection we may have today is regarding those who were the witnesses of the miracle when the Lord raised the young girl from the dead. The Gospel says that when Jesus came to the house of Jairus, the girl died and the people wept and mourned for her. When the Lord told them not to weep, they did not listen but ridiculed Him (Lk. 8, 52-53). In the same way nowadays many people make fun of religion and of our faith in the Word of God. Therefore, the Lord put those people all outside. He permitted only His three closest Disciples and the girl’s parents to come in (Lk. 8, 51-54). Only those who believed were the witnesses of the miracle. Only they were worthy of seeing that great work of the Lord. Others who had no faith were unworthy to be present. Thus the holy and great things are not accessible for those who have little or no faith. This is why many people complain that God never shows them His miracles, never appears to them. This is because of their lack of faith. For God shows Himself only to those who really believe. “Do not give what is holy to the dogs; nor cast your pearls before swine”, says the Lord (Mt. 7, 6).”
“Dear brothers and sisters! Let us study the Word of God. Let us find precious treasures of spirit in every Gospel lesson we hear in the church. Let us be grateful for the Lord’s mercy towards the human kind, to men and women. Let us imitate the faith of Jairus and of the woman with an issue of blood, so we can be granted according to our faith. Let us also be worthy of God’s revealing us His great works by firm faith, trust and humility.”

Following the dismissal of the Liturgy the Rector preached a short sermon in Russian addressing the main thoughts of his English homily. He also wished the parishioners a happy Thanksgiving Day and expressed a desire that we would first remember to give thanks to God for all His blessings and then indulge ourselves by feasting at the holiday table.

23rd Sunday after Pentecost


On November 12, on the 23rd Sunday after Pentecost, Rector of St. George Church, Archpriest Igor Tarasov served the Divine Liturgy in our temple.

Following the Gospel lesson the Rector preached a homily in Russian. He pointed out that man possessed by the evil spirits in the Gospel story assigned for this Sunday (Lk. 8, 26-39) is an image of our passionate and sinful soul. We are often possessed by many passions. Those passions are our demons whose name is “legion”. Different vices like anger, lie, laziness, drunkenness may overcome our will. Being dominated by those passions we do strange and terrible things and later may be surprised that we do them. But the power of Christ can liberate us from those passions, just as this power healed the demoniac in today’s Gospel lesson. Our sinful soul can be freed in repentance, in reception of the Sacraments and by living spiritual life. We need to stay with Christ, to be in His Church which is a hospital for our spiritual infirmities. We also should do as the healed demoniac did. He wanted to stay with Christ, but the Lord told him: “Return to your own house, and tell what great things God has done for you” (Lk. 8, 39). We read that he went his way and preached. Thus he became the disciple of Christ and a preacher of the Gospel. Since we declare that we are the followers of Christ, we need to preach our spiritual successes, to preach what great things God has done to us. We may do it directly, by telling others about our spiritual life or we may do so by being an example of righteous living.

After the Liturgy dismissal the Rector preached a short sermon in English to stress the main points of his homily.

Following the liturgical service the Rector and parishioners enjoyed delicious meals and a nice company at the coffee hour. Our Warden and Choir Director, Olga Roussanow was congratulated on the occasion of her past birthday. She was presented by a picture portrait of her own, artistically made by the Malyshew family. Maria Malyshew was also congratulated on her past birthday. Traditional Polychronion (“Mnogaia leta!”) was proclaimed and the toasts raised to these parishioners.

22nd Sunday after Pentecost


On November 5, on the 22nd Sunday after Pentecost, as well as feast of the Holy Apostle James, brother f the Lord, we had a beautiful celebration in our Parish. In the absence of our Rector the Divine Liturgy was served by Priest Mark Rashkov, cleric of St. Nicholas Cathedral.
Following the Gospel lesson Fr. Mark preached a homily.

21st Sunday after Pentecost


On October 29, on the 21st Sunday after Pentecost, in the absence of the Parish Rector, our services at St. George Church were celebrated by Archpriest Alexander Golubov, cleric of St. Nicholas Cathedral. He was co-served by Deacon Alexey Golubov.
Following the Gospel lesson Fr. Alexander preached a homily.
After the service clergy and parishioners enjoyed a nice company and delicious food at the coffee hour.

20th Sunday after Pentecost


On October 22, on the 20th Sunday after Pentecost, as well as Sunday of the Holy Fathers of the 7th Ecumenical Council, and feast of the Holy Apostle James, we had a nice celebration at our parish temple. In the absence of our Rector the Divine Liturgy was served by Priest Mark Rashkov, cleric of St. Nicholas Cathedral.
Following the Scripture lessons he preached a homily on the appointed Gospel reading.