Orthodox Church of the Mother of God website - Home page
Welcome to the official website of the
Orthodox Church of the Mother of God,
Joy of all the Sorrowful
- We are a growing parish in the Diocese of New York and New Jersey, of the Orthodox Church in America (OCA).
- We are in historic Mays Landing, New Jersey, easily reachable near where Route 40 meets Route 50 in Atlantic County.
115 Hudson St.
Mays Landing, New Jersey 08330
Turnersville, NJ 08012 US
- Category: Schedule of Services
Christmas Service 2014
We will celebrate the Nativity of our Lord God and Savior Jesus Christ in the Flesh with a Liturgy on Thursday Morning Dec 25 at 10AM. This is a very important Holy Day in the course of human Salvation, and I hope everyone will be here for all the services.
- Category: The Son of God, the Incarnation
The Roman Empire
The Universal Expectation of the Messiah
Having been freed from the empire of the Greek kings, the Jews did not have long to make use of their freedom. The Romans, having conquered the whole known world, also subjugated the Jews (64 B.C.). They placed over Palestine the procurator Antipater from the tribe of Esau, an Idumean (or Edomite). He very cleverly secured the confidence of the Romans, but was soon poisoned.
After him, his son Herod, called Herod the Great, was appointed governor of Galilee. He was a suspicious, brutal and cunning man. He also, like his father, skillfully gained the confidence of the Roman authorities and was declared King of the Jews. In order to find favor among the Jews, King Herod restored the Jerusalem Temple. Having received the title of King, he was still subordinate to Caesar, the Roman Emperor. From the time that the Jews came under Roman power, they were always subject to a Roman ruler, a deputy of the Roman Emperor. The Jews were allowed to keep their Sanhedrin, their council of high priests and elders of the people; but the power of the Sanhedrin was strictly limited. The Sanhedrin, for example, could not impose the death penalty without the permission of the Roman ruler, to whom belonged the highest authority in Israel.
- Category: Saints and Icons
Icon of the Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ
This Icon of the Nativity of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, is found on the Iconostas of our church, in the row of great feasts. This icon is more than just a beautiful Christmas piece. It conveys important theological truth as all icons do. Jesus is wrapped in swaddling cloths in such a way that he resembles one wrapped for burial. This indicates that He was born to die for us. The red heifer is present in the cave, which is symbolic of being offered as a sacrifice for the sins of the people. The ass which bore Mary and Him out of town for his birth is there foreshadowing the Triumphal Entry as He goes willingly to the Cross to reconcile us to Himself. The angel in the mountains is shown above two shepherds. This tells the story of how the angel appeared to the shepherds singing and glorifying the birth of Christ, calling them to join in the praise. St. Joseph the Betrothed is shown in a struggle against his temptation. The old man talking to him represents his temptation, when he considered "putting Mary away quietly" not knowing whose child she was to bear. Sometimes, the icon shows three men on horseback, they are the Magi following the star that is being guided by God so they can worship the King, Jesus Christ.
- Category: Saints and Icons
(the Icon of the Mother of God "the Joy of All the Sorrowful" is Commemorated on July 23, October 24, and November 19)
About the Patron of our Parish
By Helen Creticos Theodoropoulos
Deep within the heart of the Church, in the place where sorrow and joy meet and where our bitter tears are kissed away by a mother's love, we encounter the Most Holy Mother of God. The Church in its devotion to the Ever-Virgin Mary has always known that she is a mystery and a gift given to us by God. The Theotokos is a mystery that can be experienced and encountered, and yet never explained or described in words of logic and science, and she is a gift that brings radiant joy and comfort in the midst of darkness and need. Through the centuries the Church has expressed its love for her through countless hymns, has praised her in its most exquisite poetry and song, and has portrayed her in its most beautiful and beloved icons. No other saint is the subject of so much devotion, and no other saint has so many miracles attributed him or her.
As the local community of the Church of the Mother of God, this parish, exists for the purpose of worshiping God according to the Holy Scriptures and Tradition of the Holy Orthodox Church, to encourage union with God among the members of the parish, to seek out the lost, the searching, and the un-churched and to strive to bring them into union with the Church, to provide religious education to its members and potential members, provide charitable aid, and to defend, promote, and witness to theOrthodox Christian Faith in southern New Jersey.
This website is a tool to help in this purpose. Primarily to publicize our existence in southern New Jersey, and hopefully, encourage people to "come and see".
The many pages on this website contain information we hope is helpful.
Our Church Building
Our church building, and the services celebrated within it, are from the tradition of the Church, from the vision of St John the Apostle, as well as the Old Testament Temple. The interior of the Orthodox Church buildings are particularly styled to give the experience of the unity of all things in God. They are not constructed to reproduce the upper room of the Last Supper, nor to be simply a meeting hall for people whose life exists solely within the bounds of this earth. The church building itself, is an image of the world.