Twelve Apostles' Church Eastleigh

The Sign of a Christian

In this email

Message from Fr Alexander — The Sign of a Christian
Create an online forum?
Covid-19 Response
Live stream information
News of Future Services
Patron
Resources
Saints and Feasts — 7th–14th May
Offer of help

Dear Friends

Christ is risen!  He is risen indeed!

We live in interesting times.  It is easy to become despondent, to worry and to fret.  This is a natural response, a normal response, a familiar response.  We have our concerns, bills to pay and family to feed, we hear regular news reports on the severity of the crisis.

And yet … and yet we need not worry since Christ is risen!  Christ is risen — not from a tomb in Gethsemane, not from a death two thousand years ago — Christ is risen today and now in our hearts.  When we celebrate Pascha we do not merely remember an event from the first century, we recognise that Christ is alive here and now among us: Christ is risen!

Sayidna Georges (Khodr), former Metropolitan of Mount Lebanon, spoke of this more eloquently than I can.  In this video he speaks in Arabic but there are English subtitles: please watch it, then rewatch it.

Why are you sad?  Did you forget that Christ is risen?

The Lord promised, “For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them.” (Matthew 18:20)  It is important to notice, the Lord did not say his memory is in our midst but he himself, his very person.  Christ is risen and is present here and now, Christ is risen and no virus nor conflict, no disease nor hardship, no suffering nor power, can separate us from the new life he brings.

What is, then, the sign of a Christian?  Having a Cross around the neck?  Reciting the Lord’s Prayer or the Creed?  Making the sign of the Cross?  Going to Church?  Feeding the hungry?  Clothing the naked?  These are all good things — I strongly desire you will do them all — yet the sign of a Christian is to have the risen Christ as a reality in our lives and in our hearts.

Christ is risen!  He is risen indeed!

May the joy of the risen Christ fill your hearts with love: may his saving death and resurrection bring you to knowledge of the Father by the power of the Holy Spirit.


Create an online forum?

Would you be interested in meeting online?  One-to-one or as a group?  We could make use of technology to create an online community, ask questions, read together, pray together?

Let me know! Email webenquiry@orthodoxeastleigh.uk


Covid-19 Response

We should follow government advice whenever we can.  We are not being asked to give up or deny our Faith, but many are being told to stay socially isolated and this will last, perhaps, for many months.

How can you respond?  Pray.  We pray because we love and because we know the power of prayer.  We pray not as a last resort but as a first response.

Is there anything you need or anything you can offer?  Let me know — my telephone number and email address are on each of the emails: please get in contact if you are feeling isolated: I am here for you.

Are you willing to contact isolated people via email or phone?  Let me know!  It would be good to match up those who need help with those who can offer it.

Live stream

The Monastery of Saints Antony and Cuthbert, Shropshire, is live-streaming its services for all who are unable to go to their own churches.  These are over YouTube and can be accessed here:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfWMaefJYqFEZkYiK2WmeEw

Usually Vespers on Saturday evenings at 5 pm and Matins and Liturgy on Sunday mornings from 7.30 am.


News of Future Services

Given the current situation in the UK, and throughout the world, about the Covid-19 (Corona) virus it would be prudent to wait for our plans to meet together as a worshipping community.  I hope and pray this will pass soon.

This is an invitation for us to repent and to pray.

Patron

We need to be praying, too, that the patron of our new community will identify himself, herself or themselves to us.  I believe it will not be so much that we choose, rather we need to pray that the choice be revealed to us.


Resources

Have a look at our website —  orthodoxeastleigh.uk
If you click on the “Blog” link, or directly here, you will see all past emails as well as sermons etc.

Our Facebook Page, facebook.com/orthodoxeastleigh, too, has daily additions during the week as well as on feast days.  Please do like and share our page and content so we may reach a wider group of people.

Do you receive the weekly (on Fridays) text message?  If not, then let me know.


Saints and Feasts

Thursday 7th May — Commemoration of the Apparition of the Sign of the Precious Cross over Jerusalem in 351; St John of Beverley, Bishop of York (721); St Alexis (Toth) of Wilkes-Barre USA (1909).

Friday 8th — Synaxis of the Holy Apostle and Evangelist John the Theologian.

Saturday 9th — Translation of the relics of St Nicholas the Wonderworker from Myra to Bari (1087).

Sunday 10th — 4th Sunday of Pascha; Sunday of the Paralysed Man; Holy Apostle Simon Zelotes, Apostle to Britain; St Comgall of Bangor (601).

Monday 11th — Holy Equals-to-the-Apostles Cyril and Methodios, Teachers of the Slavs.

Tuesday 12th — St Ethelhard, Archbishop of Canterbury (805).

Wednesday 13th — Mid-feast of Pentecost.

Thursday 14th — Martyr Isidore of Chios (251).


Can I help you?

I am here for you, you need only ask.  Is there a way I can support your life of faith?  Get in touch.

Can you help the mission?

Yes, absolutely.  Offer yourselves to the Lord: pray!  Make available to him all your talents and ask him how he would like you to use them — listen for his reply.

I ask your prayers for me.

With love in the risen Christ

Fr Alexander
webenquiry@orthodoxeastleigh.uk