St. Matthew Orthodox Christian Church
Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese
Torrance, CA

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Rev. Fr. John Mahfouz
Parish Priest

Fr John Mahfouz is the Priest and pastor of St. Matthew Orthodox Christian Church. He was born and raised in Los Angeles, California into an Eastern Orthodox Christian family of Palestinian and Egyptian decent. Baptized at St. Nicholas Orthodox Christian Cathedral in Los Angeles, Fr. John grew up serving there as an Altar Server, Sunday School Teacher, Summer Camp Counselor and Administration, and other ministries. After finishing his undergraduate degree in Chemistry at the University of California in Riverside, and working for 3 years as a Sleep Disorder Technician, Fr John was sent by the Church to attended Holy Cross Greek Orthodox Seminary in Boston, Massachusetts, where he received his Master of Divinity. Following seminary Fr John was sent to Lebanon to study at the Patriarchal School of Theology: Institute of St. John of Damascus. It was then that he met his dear wife Khouria Lina in Latakia, Syria. They were married and moved to San Diego where Fr. John worked as the Director of Student Life and Housing at the newly established St. Katherine College. In 2013 Fr. John was ordained to the Holy Diaconate at St. Anthony the Great Orthodox Church in San Diego. In 2014 he was assigned as the Assistant to the Priest of Saints Peter & Paul Orthodox Christian Church in Salt Lake City,  Utah, and in 2015 he was ordained to the Holy Priesthood at Ss. Peter and Paul. In 2017 he was assigned and sent to be the Priest of St. Matthew Orthodox Christian Church in Torrance, California. Fr. John and Kh. Lina have 5 beautiful children and are expecting their 6th. Fr John especially has a heart for youth ministry and serves on the Deanery committee of Youth Ministry.

Dn. Barsoum Barsoum
Today's Commemorations
Sunday of St. John Climacus, Aristarchus, Pudens, Trophimus the Apostles of the 70, Thomais the Martyr of Alexandria, Ardalion the Actor and Martyr, Demetrios the New-Martyr of Arcadia
Today's Scripture Readings
BRETHREN, when God made a promise to Abraham, since he had no one greater by whom to swear, he swore to himself, saying, "Surely I will bless you and multiply you." And thus Abraham, having patiently endured, obtained the promise. Men indeed swear by a greater than themselves, and in all their disputes an oath is final for confirmation. So when God desired to show more convincingly to the heirs of the promise the unchangeable character of his purpose, he interposed with an oath, so that through two unchangeable things, in which it is impossible that God should prove false, we who have fled for refuge might have strong encouragement to seize the hope set before us. We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner shrine behind the curtain, where Jesus has gone as a forerunner on our behalf, having become a high priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek.
MARK 9:17-31
At that time, a man came to Jesus kneeling and saying: "Teacher, I brought my son to you, for he has a dumb spirit; and wherever it seizes him it dashes him down; and he foams and grinds his teeth and becomes rigid; and I asked your disciples to cast it out, and they were not able." And he answered them, "O faithless generation, how long am I to be with you? How long am I to bear with you? Bring him to me." And they brought the boy to him; and when the spirit saw him, immediately it convulsed the boy, and he fell on the ground and rolled about, foaming at the mouth. And Jesus asked his father, "How long has he had this?" And he said, "From childhood. And it has often cast him into the fire and into the water, to destroy him; but if you can do anything, have pity on us and help us." And Jesus said to him, "If you can! All things are possible to him who believes." Immediately the father of the child cried out and said, "I believe; help my unbelief!" And when Jesus saw that a crowd came running together, he rebuked the unclean spirit, saying to it, "You dumb and deaf spirit, I command you, come out of him, and never enter him again." And after crying out and convulsing him terribly, it came out, and the boy was like a corpse; so that most of them said, "He is dead." But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him up, and he arose. And when he had entered the house, his disciples asked him privately, "Why could we not cast it out?" And he said to them, "This kind cannot be driven out by anything but prayer and fasting." They went on from there and passed through Galilee. And he would not have any one know it; for he was teaching his disciples, saying to them, "The Son of man will be delivered into the hands of men, and they will kill him; and when he is killed, after three days he will rise.
Today's Thought

"The light of dawn comes before the sun, and meekness is the precursor of all humility. So let us listen to the order in which Christ, our Light, place these virtues. He says: 'Learn from Me, because I am meek and humble of heart.'” – St. John Climacus