Weekly Thoughts

Dearly beloved,

Greetings to you in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ!

Sunday, September 19, First Sunday after the Feast of the Cross
Epistle Readings: Acts 3:21-26, 1 Corinthians 2:10-16
Holy Evangelion: St Mark 13:28-37
28 “From the fig tree learn its lesson: as soon as its branch becomes tender and puts forth its leaves, you know that summer is near. 29 So also, when you see these things taking place, you know that he is near, at the very gates. 30 Truly, I say to you, this generation will not pass away before all these things take place. 31 Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.
32 “But of that day or that hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. 33 Take heed, watch; for you do not know when the time will come. 34 It is like a man going on a journey, when he leaves home and puts his servants in charge, each with his work, and commands the doorkeeper to be on the watch. 35 Watch therefore—for you do not know when the master of the house will come, in the evening, or at midnight, or at cockcrow, or in the morning— 36 lest he come suddenly and find you asleep. 37 And what I say to you I say to all: Watch.”
 
Reflections:
Jesus speaks about the world transition before his Second Coming. In the past, the world has yielded to a lot of changes, with varying severity. Sometimes, we might not even notice these changes. The world’s future depends mostly on how we recognize it, how things transition, and how the leaders could prepare people for these changes of state. Every scientific invention had its impact on life in general. If society fails to adapt to these necessary changes, we will face significant danger. The disappearance of dinosaurs had reasons. If the world does not respond to Jesus’ warnings regarding the changes, the world will meet its downfall. The world cannot simply neglect him by saying spiritual changes cannot impact the secular. When it occurs, everything can be affected, because spiritual realities have more influence and control over the physical world. We are the generation that has directly experienced the drastic changes through COVID-19. If we were not ready to adapt, this race would have been extinct by this time. When Jesus tells about the end of the existing age and the dawn of the new, it points to a great transformation that can impact life as we know it.
 
Feasts:
Feast of the Cross; September 14
We celebrated the Feast of the Cross on Monday, September 13 evening. With this feast, the church has entered the season of the Cross. Most Sunday readings will be about establishing the New Age and the coming of Christ. Let us give more thought to the eternal aspects of life than the temporary ones. The Cross brings challenges as well as blessings.
 
Holy Episcopal Synod and Malankara Church Managing Committee nominate HG Dr Mathews Mar Severios Metropolitan to the next Catholicose & Malankara Metropolitan
The Malankara Orthodox Episcopal Synod and the Malankara Orthodox Church Managing Committee had meetings to reach a consensus on the designation to the next Catholicose and Malankara Metropolitan. They have named HG Dr Mathews Mar Severios Metropolitan of Kandanad West to be confirmed in the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Christian Association. This is scheduled to be held on October 14, 2021. May we all keep the process and further procedure for ratifying in the Association in our daily prayer. Church and the faithful look for peace and concord among all denominations and we believe, the new leadership shall serve towards a harmonious coexistence and lead our church to further progress.
 
SGOCT reaches out to local schools
We have visited three local schools in the Malton area, Mississauga. We provided backpacks with school supplies. The supplies include backpacks, lunch boxes, pencil cases, masks, pencils, glue sticks, pencil sharpeners, rulers, and water bottles. On our (Vicar, Secretary Manu Abraham, MC member G George, senior member Ben Nellithara) visit to Holy Cross Catholic Elementary School, St. Raphael Elementary School, and Dunrankin Drive Public School, in presence of Thomas Thomas (Peel Region Catholic School Board Trustee, Ward -5) and Susan Benjamin (PDSB Trustee, Ward 5, Mississauga/Malton), we were welcomed with warmth by the school principals and admin teams. They have highly appreciated our care for the local schools and the kids. They have thanked our parish community and all its members for this help. We do thank all our members who have contributed or are yet to contribute to this project. This is only the beginning. These schools have a breakfast program and other programs to which we can contribute to. Our Lord has called us to be fruitful and multiply in our services to society. I request our beloved members to think about how we could get integrated into the local life more and what possibilities or projects we may be able to get involved towards the building up of the Canadian society with all its diverse culture and ethos. Please feel free to share your thoughts and comments. If you come across any need for people which you think we can address as a community, please let us know. You can reach out to the vicar at (416) 570 5610.
 
Communicants Counting Machine, Wave your hand ‘ONCE’ please
We have a new electronic counting machine installed within the church at the inner northern entrance near the console. It is meant for taking the count of communicants and not for all participants. All participants are requested to register their names at the entrance welcome desk in the given form. As you enter the church interior, please wave your hand once between the sensor poles of the counting machine, if you are prepared to take Holy Communion. There is no need to wave if not taking Holy Communion. Thank you for your cooperation.
 
Choir & Acolytes joint practice
This is a reminder to all our choir members and Acolytes to attend the weekly choir practice currently conducted virtually on Saturdays 04:30 – 06:00 pm. We would wish our choir members and acolytes who will be taking turns on the upcoming Sunday or feast days to join the practice session for better coordination and harmonious chanting. The link shall be sent before the meeting.
 
MGOCSM Canada Region Annual Kanesh Retreat- Saturday, September 18
MGOCSM Toronto will be hosting its 4th annual Kanesh retreat, as a one-day-online event. This event will be held tomorrow – Saturday, September 18th, 2021 at 09:00 am. The theme this year will be ‘Orthodoxy in the Modern World’, and our guest speaker will be Rev Dn Immanuel Punnoose. The online registration link is now open. Please spread the word, and we hope to see all our MGOCSM members attending the event!
Please find the link: https://bit.ly/Kanesh2021
 
KCEF Quiz Competition- Tomorrow at 02:00 at SGOCT
Kerala Christian Ecumenical Forum has scheduled the Annual Ecumenical Quiz Competition to be conducted on Saturday, September 18, 2021, and the venue will be St Gregorios OC Toronto. There will be twelve parishes participating and our parish team has prepared for it. The program will begin at 02:00 pm. We find it a privilege and honor to host this event and to welcome leaders, organizers, coordinators, and participating teams at our parish church. Please keep the event in our prayer. Wishing the best to all teams and our special prayers for Team SGOCT!
 
MMVS Diocesan Programs
Bible Quiz: Saturday, October 02
Annual Conference: Saturday, October 09
Bible Study: Every Thursday 8.30 – 9.30 pm. The study is based on the books Amos – Malachi led by Rev Fr VM Shibu (Vicar, St Gregorios Orthodox Church Bensalem)
 
Virtual Meetings ahead 
September 18, Saturday, SGOCT Choir & Acolytes weekly practice – 04:30 – 06:00 pm
September 18, Saturday, SGOCT Prayer Meeting, 07:00 – 08:30 pm
September 19, Sunday, SS Common Session, 04:00 – 05:30 pm
September 19, Sunday, SS Teachers Meeting, 05:30 – 07:00 pm
September 23, Thursday, SGOCT Gregorian Seniors Forum, 07:00 – 08:30 pm
September 24, Friday, Divyabodhanam, 07:30 – 09:00 pm
 
Liturgical Text for this Sunday
This Sunday, we will be using the Taksa of Mar Osthathios.
Please see below the Link for Live Streaming           
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCDT7tcyQw1yZ1_yCG9AWStA
 
May the Gracious Lord keep us from all harm and heal the entire world.
 
Yours in Christ,

Thomas John Achen
fr.thomaspjohn@gmail.com
Mobile: (416) 570 5610