january 2008 letter
Congratulating you on this New Year: 2008, hoping that this year would be a blessing to our spiritual and practical lives, and also a blessing to our families and our beloved ones. We would also like to congratulate you for the feast of our Savior’s birth, which is the title the angel gave Him: “ For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord” (Luke 2: 11).
As we agreed on the New Year’s eve, we would like to set our resolution for this upcoming year to make God our priority in our lives. This will be our goal in life, in setting standards for bringing up our children, and in organizing our time. We agreed to start our day by talking first to God in our daily prayers, and hear His message to us through the Holy Bible rather than messages that we receive from any other person, remembering His words and promise to us: “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you” (Mathew 6: 33).
For the church news, our church was blessed with a trip to St. Mary & St. Moses Abbey in Texas, where we benefited spiritually and were blessed by the relics of St. Moses there. We had the opportunity to meet His Grace Bishop Youssef during midnight praises, then a sermon and liturgy the following day. It was a pleasure to find youth born in here coming from different parts of the country to spend their Christmas break there, just like in Egypt where monasticism started. We ask that the Lord may bless the Abbey, its leader and monks, to be a blessing to all our youth and Coptic community in the United States.
Just a reminder that the Baramoun of the Nativity feast will start on Friday January 4thtill Sunday January 6th where we fast similar to the great lent. The Nativity mass will be held at 7:30 p.m., the procession of the lamb at 8:45 p.m. If you plan to take communion, abstain from food starting 3:30 p.m. As usual our Sunday School party will be at 11:00 a.m. on Christmas day.
Asking you to remember the church, its priest, servants and all its services always in your prayers, may the blessings of St. Mary and St. Mercurius and the blessings of the New Year and Nativity be with us always Amen.
Fr. Youssef Halim
Belleville, January 2, 2008 2008