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SCROLL is a monthly newsletter brought out by MGOCSM Sharjah, intended to give the students something to reflect on, after the meeting. We invite you to be a part of this community and contribute with your time, effort, ideas and prayers.

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  1. 1. (Students for Christ, Reflecting Orthodox Light in Life) A monthly by MGOCSM – Sharjah Unit Issue 3 25th SEPTEMBER 2010 Volume XIV  MGOCSM is an organized movement of the Inside This Issue Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church conceived to Presidential Ponderings What is the promote interest, discussion and learning among real life? The dilemma of a baby bird students in matters regarding Church and Faith. Worship Eager to sit down? Maybe you Established in 1908, it is now one of the Church’s misunderstand the Thub’den most dynamic spiritual organizations contributing to Personality in Focus Do you know this her development in a wide range of arenas. Ambassador of our Church? The Sharjah Unit of the MGOCSM is now in its 14th Miracle in Berlin A 3yr old sees heaven year, and can claim to have been able to mould many and comes back to tell the tale young hearts to His will. SCROLL is a monthly Not the Da Vinci Code The Knights newsletter brought out by it, intended to give the Templars and the Holy Nail students something to reflect on, after the meeting. Scroll Scrawls Express thoughts and share tidbits on a page solely for you We invite you to be a part of this community and contribute with your time, effort, ideas and prayers.  TODAY’S PROGRAM Master of Ceremonies: Jebin Jose 16:00 OPENING PRAYER Anoch Johncee Mohan 16:10 BIBLE READING Hannah George 16:15 REPORT READING Rony Varghese 16:18 PRESIDENTIAL ADDRESS Fr. George Abraham 16:30 A JOB WORTH LEARNING Mrs. Sherly Matthew 17:00 ACTIVITY - SPIN A YARN Shine V. Daniel 17:30 SESSION Mrs. Premy Thambi 18:00 AIRING YOUR VIEWS 18:15 CLOSING PRAYER Ashich Georgee Mohan
  2. 2. PRESIDENTIAL PONDERINGS: WHAT IS REAL LIFE ? My dear and beloved children, Let me first welcome you back after your long vacations, into the midst of our MGOCSM fellowship. In this issue of the SCROLL, I would like you to ponder upon “What is real life?” A lot of people talk about what life is and what it’s not. What do you think life is? Where can you find it? Jesus said, “I came so they can have real and eternal life, more and better life than they ever dreamed of.” (John 10). Wait — what does that mean? Jesus knows something about reality that we don’t. He spent time getting to know the people who we might see in our bars, back alleys, and street corners. Jesus saw how real people were living, and he said that there was a better way — there was something more. He slammed the religious leaders of his day on more than one occasion for missing the point. In John 5 he said, “You search the scriptures, because you think that in them you have eternal life …. They bear witness to me, yet you refuse to come to me that you may have life”. They were missing the forest for the trees! Jesus wasn’t telling them (or us) not to read the Bible. He was saying that these leaders were so involved in knowing Scripture that they missed the life-altering meaning of its actual words. Do you see the clue there? What the religious leaders did is kind of like what we do. We look for life in so many different places, when all along real life is really found in Jesus. There’s something about Jesus that’s different from everyone else. The people who really knew Jesus got it. Peter, one of Jesus’ disciple, said in the Gospel of St. John, Chapter 6, “Master, to whom would we go? You have the words of real life, eternal life. We’ve already believed and come to know, that you are the Holy One of God.” People who follow Jesus trade in things that don’t deliver, and in return they get real life — full of solid truth, hope that lasts, love unlike anything they’ve ever known, and purpose far beyond what they could have ever created for themselves. And don’t miss this: In John 6, Jesus said — “I am the Bread of Life; he who comes to me shall not hunger, and he who believes in me shall never thirst…… For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in him should have eternal life” That’s it — that’s how we get real life. You’re saved from self- destruction, from giving yourself to things that, in the end, only lead to death. All of us fall short of God’s perfection, no matter how many good things we do. But God sent his perfect Son, Jesus, to pay the cost for our sins, giving us his perfection in God’s eyes. We must, however, accept that payment. You trade death for life, and not just any life — a life beyond your wildest dreams. You’re freed from being a slave to death. But you’re not just saved from something, you’re saved to something — freedom and new life. Don’t misunderstand: Once you choose this new life, you won’t suddenly be perfect, and life may even be harder sometimes. Having God as your Master, rather than sin controlling you, will also take time. You’ll mess up — sometimes again and again. But God forgives. Scripture reassures us, “No one who believes in Him, shall be put to shame” (Romans 10). Becoming a Christian is a choice that we make in our hearts and then the choice is demonstrated in their lives, in their words, and finally this choice is cemented through the Sacraments. I would like you to look at the illustration alongside. Which of these two eggs would you like to be? A baby bird feels infinitely more safe and secure within an egg. However its desire for food and its natural instinct to turn towards the source of warmth and nurture, will prompt it break out of its shell and discover a whole new world. This world outside is very harsh and tough. But its life would have had no meaning, had the 2
  3. 3. chick stayed within the shell. We too long for this new life deep within ourselves. We yearn to discover the Creator and the Almighty. But often we fear the sacrifices that we have to make to accept this new life. Being born Christians, we are even offered a glimpse of this fascinating new world. But we often prefer to look away, feeling afraid or weak to destroy this flimsy shell of the material world built around us. Let us rediscover the world, let us embrace the new Life that Jesus has promised us, let us be born again into eternal life. Yours in his service, George Abraham Achen Unit President, MGOCSM Sharjah Unit FOOD FOR THOUGHT: A Christian should be IN the world and yet not OF the world. How can this be? Consider the fish who, though he lives in the salty sea, does not taste salty. Headlines Today: Nail from Christ’s crucifixion found - The Telegraph, March 2010 A nail dating back from the time of Christ’s crucifixion has been found at a remote fort believed to have once been a stronghold of the Knights Templar. The four-inch long nail is thought to be one of thousands used in crucifixions across the Roman empire. Archaeologists believe it dates from either the first or second century AD. The nail was found last summer in a decorated box at a fort on the isle of Ilheu de Pontinha, off Madeira. Pontinha was thought to have been held by the Knights Templar, the religious order that occupied Jerusalem during the Crusades in the 12th century. Bryn Walters, an arachaeologist, said the iron nail’s remarkable condition suggested that it had been handled with extreme care, as if it was a relic. While one would expect the surface to be pitted and rough’, on this nail, it was smooth. That suggested that many people had handled it over the centuries. IMPORTANT DATES IN OUR CHURCH CALENDAR (1 September – 15 October) 8 SEPTEMBER: FEAST OF THE BIRTH OF SAINT MARY, THE MOTHER OF GOD 9 SEPTEMBER: FEAST OF ST. MARY'S PARENTS, UAKIM AND HANNA 14 SEPTEMBER: FEAST OF THE HOLY CROSS TH 23 SEPTEMBER: 87 COMMEMORATION OF HG ALVAREZ MAR JULIOS 24 SEPTEMBER: FEAST OF SAINT DIMETH TH 25 SEPTEMBER: 116 COMMEMORATION OF PATRIARCH HH IGNATIUS PETER III TH 28 SEPTEMBER: 13 COMMEMORATION OF HIS GRACE PHILIPOSE MAR THEOPHILOS METROPOLITAN 1 OCTOBER: FEASTS OF THE EVANGELIST ST. ADAI, ST. ABHAI THE MARTYR, ST. MALKE. TH 3 OCTOBER: 325 COMMEMORATION OF HIS HOLINESS MAR BASELIOS ELDO CATHOLICOS 7 OCTOBER: FEAST OF MARTYRS ST. SARGIS AND ST. BAKOS TH 12 OCTOBER: 152 COMMEMORATION OF MALANKARA METROPOLITAN HG PHILIPOS MAR DIONYSIUS IV, COMMEMORATION OF HG YUHANNON MAR ATHANASIOS 15 OCTOBER: FEAST OF SAINT OSYO THE ASCETIC 3
  4. 4. STUDY-SCOPE: Personality in Focus HG DR. PHILIPOSE MAR THEOPHILOSE METROPOLITAN Born on 9 May 1911 Departed on 28 September 1997 Education  B.A. from Cochin Maharaja’s College  M.A. from St. Augustine College, England  M .Th. from Cardiff University, UK  Doctorate in Divinity from Harvard University, USA Milestones  Becomes Deacon in 1929, received from St. Geevarghese Mar Dionysius  Anointed Priest in 1944, by HH Baselios Geevarghese II, Catholicos of the East  Consecrated Metropolitan in 1966, by HH Baselios Ougen, Catholicos of the East Achievements  Principal of the Orthodox Theological Seminary, Kottayam (Old Seminary). Spearheaded the renovation and extension of the Seminary.  President of the MGOCSM  Metropolitan of the Ankamali Diocese  Metropolitan of Bombay Diocese Special Mention  In 1988, October 5, he translated the Holy Relics of Blessed Alvares Mar Julios Metropolitan to St. Mary’s Orthodox Church, Goa.  Influential contributor and founding member of the World Council of Churches (WCC), Secretary of Faith and Order division and Central Committee member  Close friend of the Eastern European churches, viz. Serbian Church, Russian Orthodox Church, Romanian Orthodox Church and Bulgarian Orthodox Church  Honored as a special invitee to attend selection of His Holiness Peeman Patriarch of Russian Orthodox Church  Chief Guest of the State during Republic day celebrations of Romania, along with Romanian President and Romanian Patriarch  Has played instrumental roles in mentoring many church leaders including late HH Moran Mar Baselios Mathews I and HG Dr. Paulose Mar Gregorios Epithets Ambassador of the Malankara Orthodox Church; Good Samaritan Interred in Thrikunnath Seminary, Aluva in Kerala DID YOU KNOW?: On almost all devices with a numeric keypad such as telephones, computers, etc., the 5 key has a raised dot or raised bar to make dialing easier. Persons who are blind or have low vision find it useful to be able to feel the keys of a telephone. 4
  5. 5. Worship: Thub’den - The Great Intercessions - Compiled by a SCROLL Correspondent Over the years, the Thub'den has been associated with the time that the laity get to sit down in midst of a long and demanding service. It is not uncommon to see people nearly falling down, as if struck by lightning, so as to ensure a good seat. Others opt for settling down a few seconds before the commencement of these intercessionary prayers. Pay close attention (not to the service) and you may even hear a few snores. However not many know that the Thub’den have quite a significance in the Holy Qurbana, and that they used to be recited while the congregation stood in rapt attention. The Thub’den is better described as the Church's Great Intercessions & Her Celebration of the Communion of Saints. Also known as the Dyptychs (their Byzantine Orthodox name), they are a living affirmation of the apostolic faith. Through these we affirm that there is no barrier to separate those we love who have gone on to their reward in the next world from us who are living our lives in the temporal world. This affirmation is called the communion of saints, and simply takes Christ at his word: that those who believe in him shall never die. The church celebrates this reality by recalling the illustrious Christians of past ages who have been extraordinary examples of how to be Christian men and women. The Thub'den also recall places and events in the history of the Gospel and of the Church. See if you can match each Thub’den with its contents: A. First Thubden [ ] 1. Canon of the Living Earthly Rulers B. Second Thubden [ ] 2. Canon of the Living Fathers and Doctors C. Third Thubden [ ] 3. Canon of Departed Fathers & Doctors of the Church D. Fourth Thubden [ ] 4. Canon of the Living Faithful Brethren E. Fifth Thubden [ ] 5. Canon of the Faithful Departed F. Sixth Thubden [ ] 6. Canon of the Theotokos and the Saints Headlines Today: 3-year old rises from the dead - The Daily Mail, April 2010 A boy of three claims he saw his great grandmother in heaven while he was clinically dead after falling into a pond. Paul Eicke came back to life three hours and eighteen minutes after his heart stopped beating. Paul was found in the pond at his grandparents’ house in Lychen, north of Berlin in Germany. He was transported by helicopter to the nearest hospital within twenty minutes, however doctors were unable to resuscitate him even after trying for hours. They had just given up when Paul’s heart started beating independently. The boy said that while unconscious he saw his great grandmother Emmi, who had turned him back from a gate and urged him to go back to his parents. Paul said: “There was a lot of light and I was floating. I came to a gate and I saw Grandma Emmi on the other side. She said to me, ‘What are you doing here Paul? You must go back to mummy and daddy. I will wait for you here.’ I knew I was in heaven. But grandma said I should go back home very quickly. Heaven looked nice. But I am glad I am back with mummy and daddy now.” Doctors at Helios Clinic, where Paul was taken, are clueless and have termed the incident as a miracle. However they have confirmed that Paul is fully well and has not suffered any brain damage. 5
  6. 6. Scroll Scrawls THE FUNNIES THE CHRISTIAN Q. What kind of man was Boaz before A lthough things are not perfect he married? A.Ruth-less B ecause of trial or pain C ontinue in thanksgiving Q. Which area of Palestine was D o not begin to blame. especially wealthy? E ven when the times are hard A. The area around Jordan. The banks F ierce winds are bound to blow were always overflowing. G od is forever able H old on to what you know. Q. Who is the greatest baby sitter mentioned in the Bible? I magine life without His love J oy would cease to be A. David. He rocked Goliath to a very K eep thanking Him for all the things deep sleep. L ove imparts to thee. M ove out of "Camp Complaining"  N o weapon that is known O n earth can yield the power P raise can do alone. Q uit looking at the future R edeem the time at hand S tart every day with worship T o "thank" is a command. U ntil we see Him coming V ictorious in the sky W e'll run the race with gratitude X alting God most high. Y es, there will be good times and yes some will be bad, but... Z ion waits in glory...where none are ever sad! When you take help from your "Too blessed to be stressed!" The shortest distance Facebook status updates to write your between a problem and a solution is the distance “What I did on my summer vacation” between your knees and the floor. The one who essay kneels to the Lord can stand up to anything. 6
  7. 7. One day, a one dollar bill and a hundred dollar bill got folded together This Month and began talking about their life experiences. BAPTISM DAYS The hundred dollar bill began to brag: ANU ANNA GEORGE "I've had a great life," he said. "I've been to all the big hotels, Donald Trump ASHNA JACOB himself used me at his casino, I've been in the wallets of Fortune 500 board ATHENA AJIN ALEX members, I've flown from one end of the country to the other! I've even BLESSON BABU been in the wallet of two Presidents of the United States, and once when Princess Diana visited the US, she used me to buy a packet of gum." JEMIMA M GEORGE LAVEENA MARIAM JOHN In awe, the dollar humbly responded, "Gee, nothing like that has ever MIRIA JOHNSON E happened to me, ...but I have been to church.. a lot!!!" NITHYA R KURIAKOSE SOUMYA M MATHEW LESSONS FROM NOAH’S ARK BIRTHDAYS 1. Don't miss the boat. CECIL GEORGE DERYL MARIA RAJU 2. Remember that we are all in the same boat. ELIZABETH GEORGE 3. Plan ahead. It wasn't raining when Noah built the Ark. JITHIN JOY MATHEW 4. Stay fit. When you're 60 years old, someone may ask you to do something JOHNSY THANKACHAN really big. JOSHUA MONSY 5. Don't listen to critics; just get on with the job that needs to be done. JYOTHISH ABY THOMAS 6. Build your future on high ground. EHA HANNAH DANIEL 7. For safety's sake, travel in pairs. PHULIP MATHEW RENI RENGIT 8. Speed isn't always an advantage. The snails were on board with the cheetahs. ROSSAN BABY 9. When you're stressed, float awhile. SHERIN VARGHESE SHINE V DANIEL 10. Remember, the Ark was built by amateurs; the Titanic by professionals. SHYAM G VARGHESE 11. No matter the storm, when you are with God, there's always a rainbow SIJU RAJU JOHN waiting THE SCROLL NEEDS SCRIBES: Are you interested in becoming a part of the SCROLL team, and contributing your ideas and skills on a monthly basis? Make a sample of your work and hand it over to a committee member to become a SCRIBE. Illustrations, art-work, design, articles, original stories or jokes, poems; cartoon strips…. There’s no end to how you could help. Get in touch through Facebook or email us on 7