Mission Work Is In Our Blood as North Americans (Sun. July 4)

The word of the day is “partiality.”  On this the Second Sunday after Pentecost, we commemorate “All Saints of North America.”  The word for today is “partiality.”  As we honor the saints of our land, it is appropriate that we read from Romans 2:10-16 that “there is no partiality with God (Romans 2:11).

St. Paul’s point is that the Almighty God will judge each person according to his or her deeds (Romans 2:6).  Whether one is a Jew who knows the Law of God or Gentile who does not, he or she will be judged by the same standards.  The dividing line is whether one does good or evil.  Therefore, in God’s eyes, the divisions among human beings make no difference.

The Saints Who Have Shone forth in Our Land

The icon for today is the “Synaxis of All Saints Who Have Shone forth in North America.”  This wonderful icon of the saints who are native to this land depicts them together as a group.  But  on the border are scenes from their lives.  This icon reminds us that the first martyr was Juvenaly of Alaska who left his homeland in Russia to become a missionary to the Yupik Eskimos.  And the second martyr was Peter the Aleut from Kodiak Island.

For Reflection

Mission work is “in our blood” as North American Orthodox Christians.  Orthodoxy here in America was first planted by missionaries because of the faith that God shows no partiality but “desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth (1 Timothy 2:4).  May our honor of the glorious saints of our land renew us in our zeal for mission outreach to all in our land.


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