9 May 2021

Sixth Sunday of Easter

Acts 10,25-26.34-35.44-48
Psalm 98 (97)
1 John 4:7-10
Gospel: Joh 15:9-17

Jesus said to his disciples: ‘As the Father has loved me, so I have loved you. Remain in my love. If you keep my commandments you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and remain in his love.

I have told you this so that my own joy may be in you and your joy be complete. This is my commandment: love one another, as I have loved you.

A man can have no greater love than to lay down his life for his friends.

You are my friends, if you do what I command you. I shall not call you servants any more, because a servant does not know his master’s business; I call you friends, because I have made known to you everything I have learnt from my Father.

You did not choose me: no, I chose you; and I commissioned you to go out and to bear fruit, fruit that will last; and then the Father will give you anything you ask him in my name.

What I command you is to love one another.’

Collect: Grant, almighty God, that we may celebrate with heartfelt devotion these days of joy, which we keep in honour of the risen Lord, and that what we relive in remembrance we may always hold to in what we do…

Readings Solemnity of the Ascension (13/5)

  1. Acts 1:1-11
  2. Psalm 47 (46)      
  3. Ephesians 4:1-13
  4. Mark 16:15-20

Readings Sixth Sunday of Easter (16/5)

  1. Acts 1:15-17.20a.20c-26
  2. Psalm 103 (102)
  3. 1 John 4:11-16
  4. John 17:11b-19

Saints of the Week

  • 12 Wed St Epiphanius of Salamis (in Cyprus).
  • 14 Fri St Matthias, apostle.

If you keep my commandments you will remain in my love

But how can we, in our weakness, carry this love? St John, in the Second Reading, tells us emphatically that liberation from sin and from its consequences does not come about by our own initiative, but of God’s. It was not we who loved him but he who loved us and who took upon himself our sin and washed it away with the blood of Christ. God loved us first and wants us to enter into his communion of love, to collaborate in his work of redemption.

In the Gospel passage the invitation of the Lord resonates: “I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide” (Jn 15:16). It is a message meant in a specific way for the Apostles but, in a broad sense, regards all the disciples of Jesus. The whole Church, all of us are sent out into the world to spread the Gospel Message and the good news of salvation. But it is always God’s initiative; he calls us to various ministries, so that each one plays a proper role in the common good. He calls us to the ministerial priesthood, to the consecrated life, to married life, to working in the world: all are asked to respond generously to the Lord, sustained by his Word which comforts us: “You did not choose me, but I chose you.” (Cf. Em Pope Benedict XVI, 13/5/2012).

Saint Epiphanius of Salamis

During a 2007 visit with the Orthodox Archbishop of Cyprus, Pope Benedict XVI praised Epiphanius as “a good pastor” who “pointed out to the flock entrusted to him by Christ, the truth in which to believe, the way to take and the pitfalls to avoid.”

“At the beginning of this third millennium,” the Pope reflected during the visit, “the Church finds herself facing challenges and problems not at all unlike those which Bishop Epiphanius had to tackle.”

Epiphanius was born in Palestine (± 310), the son of Greek-speaking Jewish parents. He is said to have been drawn to the Church after seeing a monk give away his clothing to a person in need. Not long after his conversion, he became a monk himself, spending time in the Egyptian deserts.

Around 333 he returned to the Holy Land and built a monastery near his birthplace in Judea. Epiphanius showed great dedication to the rigors of monasticism, which some of his contemporaries considered excessive, although he insisted he was only seeking to work faithfully for God’s kingdom.

The devoted monk was also a man of extraordinary learning, versed in the Hebrew, Egyptian, Syrian, Greek, and Latin languages and literature. For over two decades, until 356, Epiphanius was a disciple and close companion of Saint Hilarion the Great, a monk known for his wisdom and miracles.

The spiritual bond between them remained unbroken after Hilarion left Palestine around 356. Hilarion’s influence within the Church of Salamis, in present-day Cyprus, led to its choice of Epiphanius as bishop in 367.

During his years in Palestine, Epiphanius had frequently offered guidance and help in the Church’s struggle against Arianism, the heresy which denied Jesus’ eternal existence as God.

Determined to protect the Church from error, Epiphanius became involved in various controversies and was known as a strong voice for orthodoxy. In some instances, however, his zeal was misguided or uninformed, as when he inadvertently became involved in a plot against Saint John Chrysostom.

St. Epiphanius of Salamis died in 403, while returning from Constantinople after distancing himself from the attempt to depose St. John Chrysostom. Sensing the approach of death, he gave his disciples two final pieces of advice: to keep God’s commandments, and guard their thoughts against temptation.

He was buried on May 12, after his ship’s return to Salamis

Weekly News

  • – Last Week’s Collection

              € 191.21            Thank you for your generosity!

    New restrictions

    Cyprus Government issued new restrictions last week:

    * Maximum of 50 people inside the Church (until 1st June).

    * The attendants to the liturgical services must have the coronapass.

    The coronapass means having either: 1) A negative PCR/rapid test no older than 72 hrs; or 2) Received at least one dose of a vaccine three weeks earlier; or 3) Contracted the virus in the past six months.

    – Parish Office & Coffee Shop: will move to new premises at the end of May!

    The new address is Stilis Agiou Pavlou (Charalambous Court 5). On google maps the name of the street appears like “Stasandrou”.

    Look for the white building next to St. Paul’s Tavern.

    You can find a map on the board in the church.

    Solemnity of the Ascension: Thursday 13th May

    Masses at 12PM (AK) – 6PM (AK) – 6PM (Polis)

    Second Collection for World Day of Prayer for Vocations: Postponed

    Big Sing: 20th May at 4PM in AK

    Retiring collection to be shared by the Roman Catholic and Anglican parishes. For information, please contact Fr. Jim (99793169).

    – Caritas

    We are in need of non-perishable food (pasta, rice, beans, lentils, canned meats, oil, etc.), diapers in all sizes, baby milk supplies (Nan 1,2 & 3), personal hygiene items.

    You may bring your donation to the church or the Presbytery.

    We also need volunteers to help with the food programme, data entry, sponsoring new mums, lifts to come to Mass on Sunday.

    For more information, please, contact Fr. Fernando or Richard (99282385). Thank you for your prayers and support!

    Conference on Saint Joseph (3 May): Postponed

    – Archangel Michael Hospice

    Help us keep offering free palliative care in Paphos as we make it through this pandemic. Your donations can be made to any of the priests. For more information, please contact Mona (99494140).

    – Coffee Shop

    As we reopen (after the move), we will need volunteers to keep the Shop running! Please contact Wendy Connolly at 99 456 833, or father Jim.

    – Christmas Raffle, 100 Club, Light up a life: To be rescheduled soon.

Mass Times