The excitements and “busyness” of the Christmas holidays are now behind us, and regular updates from the weekly “News From Nick” newsletter resume at last. Previous newsletters are available here and selected items that are still timely will be posted in date order. Today’s update will include several items all at once so that we all may jump feet first into the New Year.
First up, from Father Manny:
So, Let’s See What We Have…
There’s nothing like a few well-defined questions to cause our hearts to beat a bit faster or have those little beads of sweat start to form at the top of our brow. My friends, the ‘scriptural and historical’ questions posed in News From Nick two weeks ago–from the reactions of many of the readers–created some anxious and even some comical moments. That’s wonderful! Not that I’d wish any one any more anxieties than we already have with our day-to-day situations. But, a little comedy, well now, that’s free therapy if you ask me! The questions were fun and more importantly, they may help serve us well for future conversations we may have concerning the ‘history’ of scripture and the ‘historical Jesus.’
Now, there were no trick questions, honest. And, I’m hoping and trusting we did our individual best to remember our Sunday lessons well and not resort to using the internet, or some biblical concordance or any other such text. Rather, we first used our memories, recalled the things many of us learned as children and the sermons and homilies we’re heard over the years. But, if we did use other sources for assistance, that’s okay, too.
So, without any further ado, let’s look at the questions and provide some answers, shall we:
- What sea did Moses, the Hebrews and the Egyptians pass through?Answer: The Red Sea or the Sea of Reeds. Either is correct as one is the same as the other.
- What mountain did Noah, his family and the ark land upon?Answer: Mt. Ararat in present-day Turkey
- What does the name Moses mean…what is its origin?Answer: Moses means, ‘taken from the water,’ or ‘the child,’ or ‘taken from the reeds.’ Remember, the baby Moses was found in a basket, floating on the water, wrapped in a Hebrew cloak.
- Name the 10 Commandments.Answers:
- I am the Lord thy God who brought you out of the land of Egypt out of the house of bondage. You shall have no other gods before you.
- You shall not make for yourself a carved image of any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth below, or that is in the waters under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I the Lord your God is a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers of the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.
- You shall not take the Lord your God’s name in vain.
- Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God.
- Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the Lord your God is giving you.
- You shall not commit murder.
- You shall not commit adultery.
- You shall not steal.
- You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
- You shall not covet your neighbor’s house, you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, nor his male servant nor his female servant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that is your neighbors.
— Exodus 20: 2-17
5: What river did John baptize Jesus in?
Answer: The River Jordan.
— Mark 1: 4-11
6: Name the 12 apostles.
Answer: Simon Peter, Andrew, James the less, James the Greater, Bartholomew, John, Judas, Simon, Jude (Thaddaeus), Philip, Thomas and Matthew.
Bonus Answer: Matthias replaced Judas.
Bonus Answer: Nathanael is the name used in St. John’s Gospel for Bartholomew.
John 1: 29-51
7: Who are the 4 Gospel writers?
Answer: Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.
8: Of the 4 Gospels in the New Testament, which was written first?
Answer: St. Mark’s Gospel is the oldest and thus, the first written.
Bonus Answer: Mark’s gospel was written in the late 60’s or early 70’s C.E. (Common Era); Matthew’s gospel was written in the 80’s C.E.; Luke’s gospel was written in the 90’s or maybe the very early 2nd Century, C.E.; and John’s gospel was written in the 90’s or more likely the early 2nd Century,C.E.
9: Name the Beatitudes.
“Blessed are the poor in spirit for theirs in the kingdom of God. Blessed are they who mourn for they shall be comforted. Blessed are the meek for they shall inherit the earth. Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness for they shall be satisfied. Blessed are the merciful for they shall obtain mercy. Blessed are the pure of heart for they shall see God. Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be called children of God. Blessed are they who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”
— Matthew 5: 3-10
There you have it, nice and neatly presented. So, how did we do? Anyone get them all correct and in their proper order? Come on now, tell us who you are, you deserve our most sincere congratulations. My good people, these questions, I hope and trust will be the start of a new year’s resolution to get better acquainted with scripture, with our Christian faith and with our Judeao-Christian history. More questions will come in the future. Some questions will focus on our perception of Christianity and what our individual beliefs are; while other questions will be, again, taken from scripture and popular biblical stories.
Consider yourselves, all of us, as people of God on a journey, for that is the reality we all face. We are all traveling, together as well as individually, on the path that the Lord has designed for us. As we travel, we will come upon obstacles that may slow us down or cause us some consternation and pain. Nonetheless, we are called, we are commissioned to forge ahead, stay the course and travel the narrow road…that is what will lead us to our promised inheritance. Along the way, let’s make more friends and thus, let’s travel together, as a family of faith, firmly rooted and planted in Jesus the Redeemer.
Help Needed to Take Down Christmas Decorations
This weekend (January 14 & 15), after both the Saturday and Sunday liturgies, we need people to help take down and store the Christmas decorations. If you can stick around and lend a hand, we’d be grateful!
Thanks in advance!
UPDATE: The Saturday evening community got most of the big banners down, and that left just the Christmas trees to deal with and a few odds and ends. Such as: Bob Kalicki would like to know where the boxes for the Christmas trees were stored; they may have been found since then.
Pulpit Swap With St. Bede’s This Weekend
This weekend we were pleased to welcome Fr. Dru Green, the priest at St. Bede’s in Bensenville.
He preached and presided at St. Nicholas, while Manny was doing the same at St. Bede’s.
Please give him a St. Nicholas welcome!
Bishop’s Committee News
The Bishop’s Committee met Sunday, January 8.
The main topic of discussion was the upcoming Annual Meeting. It was decided to have the meeting Sunday, February 12, after the 10 am service. We look forward to a fun, informative meeting.
Jessica Tamaski gave a report on the status of the Chili Supper to be held Saturday, February 18. Invite your families and friends to join in this very fun time.
St. Nicholas Annual Meeting – February 12
The St. Nicholas Annual Meeting will take place on Sunday, February 12, 2012, following the 10AM liturgy. If you are able, please bring a dish to share as we’ll also enjoy a potluck lunch.
All are most welcome and encouraged to attend this meeting where we’ll discuss our shared ministry for 2012 and our budget and finances. We’ll also elect lay leaders.
Readings for This Weekend
The Second Sunday after the Epiphany
1 Samuel 3:1-10(11-20)
Psalm 139:1-5, 12-17
1 Corinthians 6:12-20
Congratulations to Paul Swanson, on the purchase of his coffee shop. As of the end of this month, he is a proud business owner. We wish him all the best and a perky future!