As we begin the Great Fast, the Church reminds us of Adam’s
expulsion from Paradise. God commanded Adam to fast (Gen. 2:16), but he
did not obey. Because of their disobedience, Adam and Eve were cast out
of Eden and lost the life of blessedness, knowledge of God, and
communion with Him, for which they were created. Both they and their
descendents became heirs of death and corruption.
Let us consider the benefits of fasting, the consequences of disobedience, and recall our fallen state. Today we are invited to cleanse ourselves of evil through fasting and obedience to God. Our fasting should not be a negative thing, a mere abstention from certain foods. It is an opportunity to free ourselves from the sinful desires and urges of our fallen nature, and to nourish our souls with prayer, repentance, to participate in church services, and partake of the life-giving Mysteries of Christ.
At Forgiveness Vespers we sing: “Let us begin the time of fasting in light, preparing ourselves for spiritual efforts. Let us purify our soul, let us purify our body. As we abstain from food, let us abstain from all passion and enjoy the virtues of the spirit....”
Fr Jonathan's Travel Plans
Fr Jonathan will be back this Saturday, February 17. In the meantime, please contact Fr Andrew Jaye for pastoral needs in Fr Jonathan's absence (e-mail; or call or text 763-238-2337).
Glimpses of EternityThanks to Oleg Voskresensky for sharing these photos of the outing to the icon exhibit in Northfield last Sunday - and thanks to Donny Brustman for making it happen!
The annual letter from parish president Eric Saathoff mentioned the master landscaping plan produced for us by Kevin Henn; you may check out this plan here.
Our iconographer, Nick Papas, had provided an early-stage rough sketch for the portal mosaic icon of the Good Samaritan, which will go above the church's front door on the outside, facing the street.
Holy Trinity Food Shelf
As you shop this week, please consider picking up a few items for our food shelf, to help our neighbors in need (food shelf guidelines). Contact Ronda Wintheiser with any questions or suggestions. Thank you!
- Sunday classes: Feb. 18, 25, Mar. 4
- Sunday, February 18: Holy Land Pilgrimage - Dn Paul Gavrilyuk and Frank Cerra will discuss their recent pilgrimage to the Holy Land, where they had an opportunity to visit the sacred places of Jerusalem, Bethlehem, and Jericho. They prayed for the parish at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre (marking Christ’s death and resurrection) and at the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem. They also organized the first symposium of the International Orthodox Theological Association (IOTA). Here is a six-minute video showing the highlights of the symposium. Paul and Frank are looking forward to discussing the ways in which IOTA’s work could be useful to the Church both globally and locally.