Today the Church remembers the life and ministry of Sergius of Russia, Abbot of Holy Trinity Monastery. James Kiefer writes:
To the people of Russia, Sergius is a national hero and an example of Russian spiritual life at its best.
Sergius was born around 1314, the son of a farmer. When he was twenty, he and his brother began to live as hermits in a forest near Moscow. Others joined them in what became the Monastery of the Holy Trinity, a center for the renewal of Russian Christianity. Pilgrims came from all Russia to worship and to receive spiritual instruction, advice, and encouragement. The Russians were at the time largely subservient to the neighboring (non-Christian) Tatar (or Tartar) people. Sergius rallied the people behind Prince Dimitri Donskoi, who defeated the Tatars in 1380 and established an independent Russia.
Sergius was a gentle man, of winning personality. Stories told of him resemble those of Francis of Assisi, including some that show that animals tended to trust him. He had the ability to inspire in men an intense awareness of the love of God, and a readiness to respond in love and obedience. He remained close to his peasant roots. One contemporary said of him, "He has about him the smell of fir forests." To this day, the effect of his personality on Russian devotion remains considerable.
Let us pray: O God, whose blessed Son became poor that we through his poverty might be rich: Deliver us from an inordinate love of this world, that we, inspired by the devotion of your servant Sergius of Moscow, may serve you with singleness of heart, and attain to the riches of the age to come; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
TOMORROW: Church Women United: Human Rights Celebration: “We Are in God’s Hands and We Are God’s Hands”, Friday, 26 September 2014 from 9 AM to 11 AM. Everyone is invited!
St. Vincent’s Feast Day and the 60th Anniversary of St. Vincent’s House will be celebrated the weekend of 27 and 28 September 2014. We will have the installation of the new director of St. Vincent’s House, the Rev. Freda Marie Brown, on Saturday, 27 September 2014 starting at 10 AM, the Houston’s Hero Award and then on the 28th the Eucharist at St. Augustine’s at 9 AM with Bishop Jeff Fisher and then the dinner starting at 3 PM. Don’t miss this!
This Sunday we continue Adult Christian Education with Focus on Islam. Given all of the recent activities in the Middle East, especially in Iraq, we will examine Islam in order to better understand the situation and our Muslim brothers and sisters.
The 6th Annual Art Show, “Let There Be Light,” will start on the 4th of October and last for 1 week.
Free mammograms on Sunday, 16 November from 8:30 AM to 2 PM at St. Augustine’s provided by UTMB. Please pass the word along to anyone who does not have health insurance and especially for women above the age of 40.
Please remember everyone on our Prayer List.
Your servant in Christ,
Fr. Chester J. Makowski+
St. Augustine of Hippo Episcopal Church
Galveston, Texas 77550