2021 A Message From the Abbess
/ Media / From the Abbess / 2021 A Message From the Abbess
Pascha 2021
Pascha 2021
Pascha 2021
A MESSAGE FROM ABBESS MELANIA

May 2, 2021, the Feast of Feasts:  GREAT & HOLY PASCHA

Christ is risen!  May we all live in the joy of our Lord’s Resurrection

throughout Bright Week, the Paschal Season, and all our lives!

Ascension 2021
Ascension 2021
Ascension 2021
A MESSAGE FROM ABBESS MELANIA

June 9, 2021, Forefeast of the Great Feast of the Ascension of Our Lord

We are approaching the Feast of the Ascension of our Lord, when He ascends with our humanity to the heavenly throne that He never left. As we celebrate this Feast, may we all leave behind the things that tie us down to this earth so that we reign with Him in eternity.

Pentecost 2021
Pentecost 2021
Pentecost 2021
A MESSAGE FROM ABBESS MELANIA

June 20, 2021, The Great Feast of Pentecost

The period between Ascension and Pentecost is unique in that we are no longer singing “Christ is risen,” but we have not yet resumed the prayer to the Holy Spirit, which we stopped singing at Pascha.  These days of waiting allow us to participate to what degree we can with the apostles, who have watched Christ ascend to His heavenly throne and now await the promised coming of the Holy Spirit.  So, on Pentecost and throughout the year, may we look with new eyes and sing with full hearts the hymn –

Oh, Heavenly King, the Comforter, the Spirit of Truth,
Who art everywhere and fillest all things;
Treasury of blessings and Giver of life,
Come and abide in us, and cleanse us from every impurity,
And save our souls, O Good One!

A MESSAGE FROM ABBESS MELANIA

July 25, 2021, Dormition of the Righteous Anna, mother of the Most Holy Theotokos

A priest who had a special devotion to the Righteous Anna would celebrate Divine Liturgy on all of her feast days. On one such day, he was readying everything for the Liturgy when he heard a woman singing in an ineffably beautiful voice. He turned to see who it was and saw the Theotokos. In his confusion, he asked her, “What are you doing here?” She responded, “You are honoring my mother. Where else would I be?” How beautiful! The Theotokos, who is more honorable than the cherubim and beyond compare more glorious than the seraphim, delights to honor her mother, just as her Divine Son delights to honor her. In these times when we are quick to take offense and to exalt ourselves above others, may God grant us this divine humility and love that springs from heaven itself.

Come one, come all!  Please join us for our Altar Feast and bring your family's favorite dish to share.

RSVP 707-942-4658 or sisters@holyassumptionmonastery.com

A MESSAGE FROM ABBESS MELANIA
September 1, 2021, Church New Year

On September 1, we will enter the New Church Year in the midst of a pandemic, war, riots, economic woes …  As disconcerting as this is, the tragic fact is such conditions are the norm, whereas the peaceful times we have lived in are the exception.  As Christians, we are in this world, but not of it.  This should not make us “so heavenly minded that we are no earthly good.”  Rather, if we really ARE heavenly minded, we will obey Heaven’s King, Who has commanded us to feed the hungry, visit the sick, clothe the naked, and take in the stranger.  And we will do so with joy for Christ IS our Joy, and He came to earth to raise us up to Himself.  So, as we enter this New Church Year, may we all do our own part to bring the Joy of Heaven to this sorrowing world!

Blessed Church New Year to you all!

Commemorated on October 14th
Commemorated on October 14th
Commemorated on October 14th
A MESSAGE FROM ABBESS MELANIA (2021)

October 14 - Venerable Paraskevḗ of Serbia

St. Paraskevḗ is much loved in the Orthodox world for her boundless charity.  Struck at a young age by the Lord’s command, “If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself, take up his cross, and follow Me”  (Mt 16:24), she started giving her clothing to the poor street children. (Her parents were NOT pleased!).  She became a nun, lived an exemplary ascetic life in the desert, then followed God’s prompting to finish her years in her own hometown.  Her relics traveled to several countries before she arrived in Iasi, Romania.  She remains in the cathedral there, and people from all over the world come to venerate her.

In our time of discord, confusion, and increasing financial hardship, she reminds us that true love of God necessarily brings true love of neighbor, and that love can spread from person to person to an extent that we will never know.  True, most of us can’t do much, but we can all reach out in love to someone who is in need of physical goods, help, or just a kind word.  If we persevere in these small things, we may be called to bigger things.  Or we may, at the end, find out that these small things ARE the big things, and only God knows the extent of the good that was done.

Credit: Icon of Venerable Paraskevḗ (Petka) of Serbia, courtesy of OCA.org.

 

A MESSAGE FROM ABBESS MELANIA (2021)

November 15 – first day of the Nativity Fast

We hear a lot about the supply chain these days and, within that, whether people will be able to get Christmas presents for their kids. The supply chain issues are serious and disappointing the kids for Christmas would definitely be sad.  On the other hand, how many times have we lamented about the ever-increasing commercialization of Christmas?  Yet, if anything it just gets worse.  Well, when we can’t learn the easy way, God gives us opportunities to learn the hard way.  So, we are getting yet another chance to learn “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.”  Yes, grocery stores have scanty shelves these days, but the Bread of Heaven is never in short supply.  So, as we start the Nativity Fast in the midst of earthly hardships, and maybe even real hunger, let us pursue ever more deeply the Word of God, Who was born in the manger to be our eternal Food. 

Icon written by the sisterhood
Icon written by the sisterhood
Icon written by the sisterhood
A MESSAGE FROM ABBESS MELANIA (2021)

December 1 – St. Philaret the Merciful of Amnia in Asia Minor

St. Philaret is possibly the only saint ever depicted in an icon holding a money bag!  He was a very generous man, who gave freely both when he was wealthy and when he had lost nearly everything (to the vehement disapproval of his wife and children!).  Through God’s providence, his granddaughter became the empress and he became richer AND more generous than ever.  He was much beloved of the poor, whom he in truth understood to be the nobles of the King of Heaven. 

We all know the saying “You can’t take it with you,” but that’s not true of St. Philaret.  He DID take it with him because he freely gave it all away for love of Christ and the “least” of His brethren.  And if WE want to take anything with us to heaven, we can – but only by giving it all away.

 

 

If you are interested in learning more about how to commission an icon hand-painted by the sisterhood, please visit our Icon Commissions webpage.

Icon written by the sisterhood
Icon written by the sisterhood
Icon written by the sisterhood
A MESSAGE FROM ABBESS MELANIA (2021)

December 25 - The Great Feast of The Nativity of Our Lord

One early morning a day or two before Christmas, I was thinking how nice it would be to have long days again, when I remembered that we had passed the winter solstice and the days already WERE getting longer.  Yes, there was and is plenty of darkness still, but the light is winning out.  And yes, there is plenty of darkness left in the world, but the Sun of Righteousness reigns and the darkness is fleeing.

 

So, as we celebrate the Nativity in the Flesh of our Lord and God and Savior Jesus Christ, let us fear no external darkness and may we allow His light to banish the internal darkness of our hearts.

 

Christ is born!  Glorify Him!

 

 

 

 

 

If you are interested in learning more about how to commission an icon hand-painted by the sisterhood, please visit our Icon Commissions webpage.

Nativity Greeting 2021
Nativity Greeting 2021
Nativity Greeting 2021
About
Visit
Shop
Media
Support
Support
Newsletter Sign-up

If you would like to join our mailing list, please fill out the following form.

Holy Assumption Monastery
1519 Washington St, Calistoga, CA 94515

(707) 942-6244