Updated on November 20th, 2018
A BYZANTINE SENSE OF TIME: On Thursday comes St. Philip’s Fast, our Byzantine Advent!
Originally known as Filipovka in the Carpatho-Rusyn roots of our Byzantine Catholic Church, the season of St. Philip’s Fast reminds us that Byzantine Catholics historically have prepared for the great feasts in the liturgical year by periods of abstinence, additional prayer, and fasting, with the major – but not only - example being Great and Holy Lent as an anticipation of Pascha (a.k.a. Easter). In that vein, we wish to raise that consciousness among all our parishioners. Knowing that we will swim against the tide of the “holiday season” that seems to begin earlier and earlier, the point remains that we are called to prepare first for the birthday of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ in our anticipation of Christmas, to welcome the Christ Child in our lives.
To the end of making our hearts and our homes worthy to receive the Incarnation on His Nativity as committed Byzantine Catholics, please be advised that St. Philip’s Fast begins this year onThursday, November 15. We will start serving Vespers on Friday evenings at 6 p.m., starting onNovember 16 and you are all welcome!
On Fridays, we should abstain from all meats. However, let us thank Bishop JOHN, our eparch, for renewing graciously the exemption historically given to Byzantine Catholics in our eparchy for the Friday after Thanksgiving Day or Nov. 23. Vespers will not be celebrated that day either.
Look out for announcements at Divine Liturgy and through our bulletin and website regarding a series of Advent conferences to be provided to us by Msgr. Kevin McAuliffe in December.
Finally, St. Philip’s Fast is an excellent time to clean your heart, mind, soul, and body via the Mystery of Repentance (a.k.a. the Sacrament of Confession) as an offering to the Christ Child and to welcome Him at Holy Communion! Indeed, that is the best gift that you can give to Christ on His birthday. If you cannot make it to confess on our parish’s schedule, then kindly call one of our priests at (602) 943-5379 to make an appointment!
While the “holiday season” may be beginning shortly and ending on Christmas Day,
we Byzantine Catholics know that Christ is the Reason for the Season! Thus in our calendar,
the Christmas season begins on Christmas Eve and ends on December 31, the Leave-taking of the
Nativity. Let us (re)discover the treasure of St. Philip’s Fast, the “Byzantine Advent”, as we look
forward to the joy of God-With-Us at Christmas.
Save the Byzantine treats for Christmas and New Year’s!
Homemade Pirohi and Nut, Apricot, Poppy Seed, and Date Nut Rolls!
Just imagine your share of 230 dozen pirohi and 220 kolachi (those apricot, date nut, nut, and
poppy seed rolls that sweeten the Christmas season). Order forms are available on line at
www.stsbcc.org or stop by the parish hall after Divine Liturgy (until 11 a.m., look for Dolores Sugent).
After you buy your goodies, then spread the word to family, friends, co-workers, and neighbors. Feel
free to share order forms with them! You may call also the parish office at (602) 943-5379.
LEARN TO SING AND CHANT: in the Byzantine way!
Please note, dear reader, that a workshop will be made available to you Sun., Dec. 16 to
learn more about our beautiful and venerable Byzantine chant. Kindly stay in our cathedral after
Divine Liturgy on these dates to listen, learn, and let go your voice to the Lord! Perhaps we can
identify a future cantor or chorister or two to keep our Byzantine chant going.