Pascha Newsletter & Donation Appeal - 2012
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Pascha Newsletter & Donation Appeal - 2012

Resurrection - F53

Resurrection - F53


St. Isaac’s Skete Pascha Greetings, Newsletter, and Donation Appeal 

Christ is Risen! 

The Meaning of Pascha:  Christ is the fulfillment of the Law and the Prophets who looked for the Messiah, and revealed Himself as even more than they had hoped for or could dream of.  He is the God-man Jesus Christ Who saves His People from their sins and opens up Paradise that had been lost to us and Adam and Eve.  Pascha is the Greek rendering through a Chaldean derivation of the Hebrew word Pesach.  This word refers specifically to the miraculous safe and dry crossing of the Hebrews over the Red Sea when Moses stretched out his staff in intercession to God for them.  So we as Christians have found the completion of this passing over, for Christ has passed over from death to life.  By this we are children of His promise of immortality.  We also need to pass over from the world of selfish thoughts and actions, and from conscious and unconscious sins, to become living temples of God, even while living here on earth.  It is at this time of the year when we can more easily reach across the abyss of selfish self-perception into the Heavenly Realm, so close to us these days.

Creation of the Plants - F111

Creation of the Plants - F111


The Change of the Seasons: In this time of the year, we experience the rebirth of life in abundance.  This is as it was at the time and place of Christ’s Life, Death, and Resurrection.  As we enter more fully this rebirth all around us, we can invite Christ to change us also inside our minds and hearts to let His revelation of Goodness and Life enter us.  This change is the essence of the meaning of the word repentance, or metanoia in Greek.  Only God can change us, but He will not do it against our conscious will, nor if we do not invite Him to act through all parts of this process.  Let us ask Him to patiently teach us more and more how to change and grow.


Skete Front Grounds Area


Our Springtime at the Skete: This year we are gladly reaping the good results of last year’s improvements in our grounds and buildings.  More brush is cleared, more lower branches of the trees are trimmed off, and more rocks have been removed from the fields.  Together these mean that our mowing can be done more thoroughly and with much less time and efforts.  The used equipment bought over the last few years for outdoor maintenance have also paid a dividend in better results and less time spent to keep it up.  One of our older riding mowers died last year, and the other two “beaters” still here are now dying quickly.  They were all at least 15 years old.  It is time to let them go.  We just found out in the last few days that there is a heavy-duty used riding mower available for $2,000 that has a PTO (power take off) and attachments are included with it for snow blowing and for roto-tilling.  It is in very good condition.  We want to purchase it to go with our other functioning mower, a large used zero-turn mower that we found reasonably two years ago and is working quite well.  We need this other riding mower just available to handle the rougher ground, and to help us snow-blow the paths which we have been shoveling by hand for years.  We also need a roto-tiller to get the ground ready for each year’s garden.  Can you help with this most helpful tool?  It would truly be a great blessing.


Common Monastic Building in Back Valley

The Back Valley of Silence: The construction on the Common Monastic Building slowed down during Holy Week and Bright Week and has just picked up again.  The painting is done, the wood trim is shaped and finished, and just needs to be put up around the windows and doors.  That is scheduled for this week.  Next week the tile installers are coming to put in the tile.  We really need more help so we can get this floor tiling done.  It will cost $1,600.  The food storage shelves will cost more than originally planned, but can go up higher as there is more head room.  Getting six now will cost about $1,200.   We need a place to put all of the food already in the kitchen area.  When the food, tools, and desks are in place, much of the dining room and kitchen will be cleared for the next stage of finishing the building.  It is our goal it to get it all fully operational by this coming winter.  

 Daily Concerns:  Our need of financial support is a steady daily reality.  Your kind donations help us live a prayerful life, and to do the outreach of providing spiritual tools to improve the spiritual lives of the Faithful.  The Holy Icons, Devotional Goods, and Books that we provide and distribute are a wonderful outreach, but they do not entirely support our food, heat, electricity, clothes, medical, and other expenses, even though we are personally frugal.  The nearby Convent of St. Silouan is even more dependent on your support, and Mother Elizabeth has special medicines that she needs for her diabetes.  We ask you to help her, and to help the monks live reasonably.  Every little bit helps.  Give something if you possibly can.

  How to Help Now:  We are moving forward by your prayers and practical support.  Pease keep it up.  Our constant concern is to learn to live with less expense and with less time spent on just daily chores if possible, to leave more time for prayer.  This is a good challenge, but takes much thought and often more financial and physical support now in order to need less in the future.  The Common Monastic Building is designed to use much less energy than even most modern green new construction.  It uses the sun and the earth to preserve energy, a passive solar design, and a wood-fired boiler fueled by the wood harvested on our own property.  When this building is finished, it can shift our life more into this older traditional mode of quiet and simple monastic living.    This Spring and Summer are critical to get a large part of the building completed so it can be used by this Winter.  This is a great investment in our future, and in our long term relationship of mutual prayer.  Help us make it grow now.  Click here to view last Construction Update.

   In addition, we ask again for help with our daily needs.  These are not extreme, but still necessary.  Give something now to help us move into the abundance of Summer even though we are personally poor.  If many give just a little, with prayer and love, that will be enough, and God always rewards a full and generous heart.  May He reward you.

Resurrection - CF731

Resurrection - CF731


     Click for Donations Page

In Closing: May God bless you in this spiritually and physically abundant time after Pascha, or Easter, into the Spring and Summer Seasons.   Keep us in your prayers, and we will keep you in ours.  We give you the joyous greeting of the feast: Christ is Risen!  Truly He is Risen!  Amen.

The Monastics of St. Isaac of Syria Skete

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