Saint Mary Magdalene Orthodox Church
Proclaiming & Living the Holy Orthodox Faith in Central California

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5th Sunday of Great Lent:

St. Mary of Egypt

  Divine Liturgy Sunday April 21 @ 10am 

   St Zosimas (April 4) was a monk at a certain Palestinian monastery on the outskirts of Caesarea. Having dwelt at the monastery since his childhood, he lived there in asceticism until he reached the age of fifty-three. Then he was disturbed by the thought that he had attained perfection, and needed no one to instruct him. “Is there a monk anywhere who can show me some form of asceticism that I have not attained? Is there anyone who has surpassed me in spiritual sobriety and deeds?”

     Suddenly, an angel of the Lord appeared to him and said, “Zosimas, you have struggled valiantly, as far as this is in the power of man. However, there is no one who is righteous (Rom 3:10). So that you may know how many other ways lead to salvation, leave your native land, like Abraham from the house of his father (Gen 12:1), and go to the monastery by the Jordan.”

     Abba Zosimas immediately left the monastery, and following the angel, he went to the Jordan monastery and settled in it.

     Here he met Elders who were adept in contemplation, and also in their struggles. Never did anyone utter an idle word. Instead, they sang constantly, and prayed all night long. Abba Zosimas began to imitate the spiritual activity of the holy monks.

     Thus much time passed, and the holy Forty Day Fast approached. There was a certain custom at the monastery, which was why God had led St Zosimas there. On the First Sunday of Great Lent the igumen served the Divine Liturgy, everyone received the All-Pure Body and Blood of Christ. Afterwards, they went to the trapeza for a small repast, and then assembled once more in church.  

     The monks prayed and made prostrations, asking forgiveness one of another. Then they made a prostration before the igumen and asked his blessing for the struggle that lay before them. During the Psalm “The Lord is my Light and my Savior, whom shall I fear? The Lord is defender of my life, of whom shall I be afraid?” (Ps 26/27:1), they opened the monastery gate and went off into the wilderness.      

 Read the whole story HERE    

Liturgy of the Presanctified Gifts


Dont' Miss this Wonderful Lenten Service


Wednesday April 24 @ 6:00pm


Learn about the Liturgy of the

Presanctified Gifts HERE


EXTRA!!  If you miss Tuesday April 16 Service:

Listen to Fr. Lawrence read the story of

Saint Mary of Egypt

Play the audio HERE

Brotherhood of St. John

No meetings until May

Open to all men of the church


Myrrhbearers -  Lenten Retreat

April 19 and April 20

Schedule Here>

@ Church Fellowship Hall

Special Guest Presentation:

Mother Catherine

St. Catherine's Monastery

Sonora, CA


Flower Calendar

January thru June 

Open to all women of the church



Saturday at 5pm - Great Vespers service

Sunday at 10am Divine Liturgy service 

Sunday Divine Liturgy is followed by a

Fellowship Luncheon in the Church Hall

Everyone is welcome!

What in the world is an Orthodox Christian?  

Click HERE for a brief explanation!

Click HERE for a more complete explanation!

An Introduction to the

Orthodox Christian Church

Adapted from: John Meyendorff. The Orthodox Church

Sesquicentennial Commemorative Logo

Illumine our hearts, O Master, Lover of mankind, with the pure light of Your divine knowledge.  Open the eyes of our mind to the understanding of Your gospel teachings.  Instill also in us the fear of Your blessed commandments, that trampling all carnal desires, we may enter upon a spiritual manner of living, both thinking and doing such things that are well-pleasing to You,


Lenten Readings


Reading Schedule HERE


Lenten Readings

 Old Testament

Reading Schedule HERE

Readings about Orthodoxy

Ancient - Authentic - Alive


Church Office Hours  



(209) 812-6232

Use this time for private prayer

or volunteer your time to our parish   

Visitors Welcome!

Glossary of Orthodox Terms

Extensive and excellent guide to 

Orthodox Christian vocabulary

by the Orthodox Church of the Mother of God 

An Invitation to Worship

"The Cross is the 'Tree of Life'"

April 7, 2024

"Our Lenten Journey: Forgiveness and Spiritual Renewal"

March 17, 2024




“If you are about to offer your gift to God at the altar and there you remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar, go at once and make peace with your brother, and then come back and offer your gift to God” (Mt. 5:23-24).

“When you stand and pray, forgive anything you have against anyone, so that your Father in heaven will forgive the wrongs you have done” (Mk. 11:25).

In the Lord’s Prayer Jesus taught His fol­lowers to pray: “Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us” (Mt. 6:12, RSV).

“Get rid of all bitterness, passion, and anger. No more shouting or insults, no more hateful feelings of any kind. Instead, be kind and tender hearted to one another, and forgive one another, as God has forgiven you through Christ” (Eph. 4:31-32).

Orthodox Christianity on the Web

by a member of our church



Parish Photo Gallery

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