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2nd Friday after Pascha; The Holy Nine Martyrs of Cyzicus; John the Martyr of Romania; Memnon the Wonderworker
Saints Feasts and Readings for 4/28/2017
We extend our prayers and love to His Eminence Metropolitan Joseph on the occasion of his Name's Day on April 30, 2017 (St. Joseph of Arimathea, Second Sunday after Pascha). May God grant him many years!
Metropolitan Joseph Presides at Parish Anniversary of St. George Antiochian Orthodox Church in Canton, Ohio
The community of St. George Antiochian Orthodox Church of Canton, Ohio welcomed His Eminence Metropolitan Joseph to preside over the 95th Anniversary of the parish from April 21–23, 2017. On Friday, April 21, a benefactors' reception was held in honor of Sayedna Joseph at the residence of Dr. Kaleel and Rhonia Shaheen, who also faithfully and elegantly served as the 95th Anniversary Chairs. The reception recognized the fundraising efforts of the benefactors who sponsored the weekend festivities. After Sayedna gathered and thanked them all for their ministry to the church, everyone listened to beautiful paschal hymns chanted by the Metropolitan's newly ordained deacon, Dn. John Al-Massih. On Saturday morning, Sayedna was greeted by over fifty beautiful children and teenagers of the church to the sounds of church bells and the chanting of the Paschal Troparion. After delivering his message to the youth and answering their questions, all were invited to a special breakfast chaired by Nina Shaheen, Malakh Bechara, Laura Kibler, and Nahi Kaed. (View the photo gallery)
Saturday evening began with Great Vespers and Artoklasia for the Feast of St. George, and we were blessed to be joined by His Grace Bishop Anthony and other local clergy. The Grand Banquet and Hafli followed at Brookside Country Club with over 250 in attendance from near and far. Dr. K.J. Shaheen II served as Master of Ceremonies and Sarah Joseph delivered a heartfelt rendition of "America the Beautiful." His Eminence and His Grace were both presented with a crystal plaque dedication by Parish Council Chair Andria Michael, who also was the Chair of the 95th Anniversary Souvenir Journal. Following a poem dedication from Mr. Louis Karoue, speeches were delivered by sons of the parish: Fr. Basil Shaheen and Fr. Michael Massouh. After remarks from Fr. Michael Corbin, His Grace Bishop Anthony introduced His Eminence Metropoltian Joseph to deliver the keynote address. Sayedna Joseph remembered all those who have labored to build up our Archdiocese, including the late Archbishop Michael, a cherished son of the community. At the conclusion of the banquet, His Eminence left all in suspense by declaring that there would be a big surprise at the Divine Liturgy in the morning.
On Sunday, the Feast of St. George, the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy began following Orthros and then came "the big surprise" with the elevation of Fr. Michael Corbin to Archpriest following the reading of the Holy Gospel. All of the parishioners were moved by this special blessing as both Sayedna Joseph and Sayedna Anthony laid their hands on the head of Fr. Michael as he kneeled before the two hierarchs. Soon, chants of "Axios!, Mustahiq!, he is worthy!" filled the church and one could feel the great love and unity of this beloved community. At the conclusion of the Liturgy, three parishioners were inducted into the Order of St. Ignatius of Antioch: Paul and Claudia Shaheen, along with Leila Andrews. Claudia is the Ladies Society President who helped a great deal with the weekend, and Leila also assisted faithfully with the Grand Banquet.
Finally, the St. George Day Luncheon chaired by Karen Davis capped off a beautiful and historic weekend. As parishioners entered the hall, they were greeted with a special video presentation with 95 years of memories organized by Liz Macris. Ladies were also greeted with a pink carnation donated by longtime parishioner Bea McPhearson, who brags about being older than the church! After being introduced by Teen SOYO President Musa Michael, the teen and children's dabke troupes performed and brought joy to all. Then everyone listened to a special performance from the St. George Choir, directed by Jim Shaheen, who recognized the longtime service of Rosemary Shaheen.
Sunshine filled the skies outside, but warmth and love were felt inside as all flocked to greet and receive the blessing of His Eminence Metropolitan Joseph, whose first visit to Canton was incredibly well received. It was a great weekend that will not be forgotten; the celebration of a church community that is ever growing in the love of our Lord and God and Savior Jesus Christ.
Monk Chariton of Karoulia The monastery was founded at the end of the 10th century. In 1198 an imperial edict of Alexios III granted it to the Serbian prince Stephan Nemanja and his son, who had both taken the habit at Vatopaedi as Simeon and Savvas. Since then it has been one of the […]
We will now be including the daily reading of Epistle and Gospel with The Prayer Team. The Resurrection of Christ But Mary stood weeping outside the tomb, and as she wept she stooped to look into the tomb; and she saw two angels in white, sitting where the body of Jesus had lain, one at the […]
This hardworking team is planning the 2017 Miami Convention.
Summer draws near, and so does the 53rd biennial convention of the Antiochian Archdiocese, July 23-30, 2017 in Miami. The Very Rev. Fouad Saba and the host parish of St. George Cathedral of Coral Gables, Florida took time from their busy schedules to talk about the features of what looks to be a historic gathering of the Archdiocesan clergy and faithful.
Who are the featured and keynote speakers this year?
The Grand Banquet will honor His Grace Bishop Antoun on Saturday night, July 29, where we anticipate our beloved diocesan hierarch will reflect upon his lifetime ministry and experiences in his service to Christ’s Holy Church. Fr. Antoine Melki, professor of computer science and technology at Balamand University in Lebanon, will be the keynote speaker during the General Assembly on Thursday and Friday, July 28 and 29, and in other scheduled workshops and events. The host committee is excited to welcome Fr. Melki, who will present interesting insights on the effects of technology in the modern world on the Orthodox Christian family.
We have learned the convention will honor Metropolitan Joseph, Bishop Antoun, and Bishop Basil. Please tell us about that.
Planning a convention requires hard work and dedication.The 2017 Convention will celebrate the 25th anniversaries of His Eminence Metropolitan Joseph and His Grace Bishop Basil in the Holy Episcopacy. We will honor them in the History Journal and during the Grand Banquet. With Sayidna Joseph’s blessing, we are dedicating the Grand Banquet and History Journal to commemorate the retirement of Sayidna Antoun and “His Lifetime of Service and Eight Decades of Love, Humility and Sunshine.” (His favorite song is “You are My Sunshine.”) Bishop Antoun has selflessly served this Archdiocese in many capacities since he arrived in the U.S. in 1959. He has been our beloved bishop in the Diocese of Miami and the Southeast since 2003. The 2017 Archdiocesan Convention Committee is honored to have the opportunity to host all of our brothers and sisters in Christ at the festivities for Sayidna Antoun.
Who is the convention for? What age groups? What key events will the convention offer them?
The Convention is centered around family with something fun-filled, educational and exciting for every age group. The week will begin with “The Welcome to Miami – Antiochian Game Show,” which promises to be so much fun. There are humanitarian and social events for teens (SOYO) as well as Young Adult Ministry (YAM) which offer great opportunities for interaction and bonding with one another, as well as spiritual development in the Orthodox Christian Faith. The Bible Bowl always bring tremendous excitement for the teen participants and everyone watching and cheering on their Diocesan teams. The Convention will also feature “Club Saint George” for our younger children to come throughout the day and participate in arts and crafts, spiritual lessons, group activities, and more. The 53rd Biennial Convention in Miami will also feature a new and enthusiastic event on Thursday evening, July 27 – The Dinner and National Debke Competition. These are just some of the many exhilarating events awaiting everyone.
How will the convention emphasize spiritual connectivity with Christ?
Meeting with the hotel management is a key part of the planning process.The 2017 Convention Committee will prepare a large, beautiful chapel to serve as the spiritual center for the entire week. The Convention theme this year is “My house shall be called a house of prayer for all nations.” (Mark 11:17) All of the sermons from our gifted clergy will concentrate on understanding this theme. The various spiritual and educational events scheduled promise to help uplift all those present. We will have Bible studies and “Ask Abouna” sessions to revitalize the spirituality of our youth and adults.
Tell us more about "Ask Abouna!"
“Ask Abouna” is an educational and spiritual event where teens and adults come together to ask the priests any questions they might have on various topics of the Orthodox Christian Faith. Bring lots of questions!
What unique attractions does Miami have to offer?
Miami is home to miles of famous white sandy coastlines. The diverse array of influences from Latin America is evident in the architecture, delicious food, music, and hospitality. All of these amazing and exciting factors can be found at the 2017 Convention venue – the Diplomat Beach Resort and Spa. Need we say more?
Join us from July 23-30! For more information, visit the Convention website.The community of St. George welcomes you!Welcome to Miami!
On a new "Pop Culture Coffee Hour," Emma Solak and Christina Andresen tackle the book and movie A Light Between Oceans. Join them as they discuss the danger of spiritual delusion, the path toward true love and repentance, and how the film adaptation missed the heart of the novel. They close with their Top 5 Worst Book-To-Film Adaptions.
Sofia Matzarioti-Kostara Byzantine society was a dynamic union of different cultural elements based on Greek civilization and the Christian faith. Although Christianity was the decisive element in the formation of Byzantium, the practical application of the Christian ethos as a way of life met with the resistance of the old cultural principles that were […]
Archimandrite Theofilos Lemontzis, D. Th. Forgiveness is the effort and exercise of a love that is, in the end, transformed into joy and leads to salvation, as Saint Païsios the Athonite notes: ‘There’s no greater joy than that which you feel when you’re hard done by. I wish everybody would treat me unfairly. I […]
Do you have a favorite story you like to hear again and again? Do you ask your parents to read a book to you over and over? Two weeks ago, we celebrated the great feast of Pascha (Easter), when our Lord Jesus Christ rose from the dead! On that day, we heard the story of […]
We will now be including the daily reading of Epistle and Gospel with The Prayer Team. The Resurrection of Christ Now on the first day of the week Mary Magdalene came to the tomb early, while it was still dark, and saw that the stone had been taken away from the tomb. So she ran, and […]
God is everywhere, present in every place, and therefore that He is ever with me and within me, my heart expands; it is free, light, alive, and my mind is clear – I am in a joyful state.” (St. John of Krondstadt) As I write this blog, it is bright week, one of the most […]
Map of participating parishes in 2017 Assembly of Bishops study on evangelization (click on image for larger view)The first national study on evangelization and outreach in Orthodox parishes in the United States has been released by the Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops of the USA. The report can be downloaded in various formats, as an executive summary, or as a full report.
The report, "Go and Make Disciples: Evangelization and Outreach in U.S. Orthodox Parishes," explores the practices and strategies developed by some Orthodox parishes that can be viewed as "exemplary" in their missionary and outreach efforts. Examples of what the readers will find in the report include:
- The "secrets" of being a parish that attracts and welcomes new members;
- Eight good practices of welcoming first-time visitors and inquirers about the Faith;
- How do "exemplary" parishes achieve a high degree of involvement of their members in parish life;
- Four distinct features of religious education in the "exemplary" parishes;
- Six "lessons" that Church leadership (bishops) can learn from the "exemplary" parishes.
The study was sponsored by the Assembly's Committee for Agencies and Endorsed Organizations, and included parishes from seven Orthodox jurisdictions. Ten of the parishes studied were from the Antiochian Archdiocese. The report was prepared by Alexei Krindatch, the Assembly's Research Coordinator, in cooperation with Sdn. Adam Lowell Roberts of the Antiochian Archdiocese, and Fr. Eric Tosi and Fr. John Parker of the OCA.
Subdeacon Adam is the full-time administrator of Becoming Truly Human, a new Antiochian outreach ministry. He authored a helpful resource at the end of the Assembly's evangelization report, titled "10 Steps to a Great Parish Website: What Every Orthodox Church Needs To Know."
On Bright Thursday, April 20, 2017, the Antochian Archdiocese was joined by co-hosts—the Syriac Orthodox Archdiocese and the St. John of Damascus Fellowship of New Jersey—in sponsoring a timely prayer service at St. George Antochian Orthodox Church in Little Falls, for the abducted Archbishops of Aleppo, Metropolitan Paul and Mar Gregorios Yohanna Ibrahim. Metropolitan Paul and Metropolitan Yohanna vanished without a trace on April 22, 2013, after they drove together in hopes of negotiating the release of hostages in captivity. Metropolitan Yohanna’s deacon escaped, but his driver was killed. (Read the Paschal Message of His Beatitude John X, in which he issues a call for the liberation of Metropolitans Paul and Yohanna.)
Metropolitan Joseph was joined by His Eminence Mor Dionysius John Kawak of the Syriac Archdiocese of the Eastern United States. In the service, Sayidna Joseph implored our Lord, God, and Savior Jesus Christ, for the freedom of the two beloved bishops and an end to the Syrian war. He also encouraged the attendees to urge their representatives and senators to continue their efforts to free the captive bishops, and called on the governments involved in the Syrian conflict to do the same in order to secure political and humane solutions towards peace in the region.
As well, the other speakers expressed their deep concern for the two bishops, and described the emptiness that has been left in the hearts of the clergy and faithful who are hoping and praying for their release. All present prayed to God for peace in Syria, the Middle East, and in all countries affected and besieged by wars and tribulations.
Archbishops of Aleppo, Mar Gregorios Yohanna Ibrahim and Metropolitan PaulAlso present at the prayer service were: His Excellency Bishop Yousif Habash of the Syriac Catholic Church; His Grace Bishop Gregory Mansour of the Maronite Church; hierarchs and representatives of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, the Coptic and Armenian Orthodox Churches, and the Maronite, Roman, and Syriac Catholic Churches; representatives from the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New York; elected officials and leaders from Passaic County, New Jersey; and the clergy and faithful of St. George.
(Photos courtesy of the St. John of Damascus Fellowship of New Jersey. The Fellowship is a humanitarian and charitable group that serves the needs of Syrian Christian communities in both North America and overseas.)
Protopresbyter Christos Aiyidis Once again, the divine drama has come to an end and the Lord’s Resurrection has become the start of a new life, the unending and eternal life in Paradise, the life for which we were created. The Lord ascended the Cross and spread His arms to embrace the whole of humanity, […]
We will now be including the daily reading of Epistle and Gospel with The Prayer Team. The Resurrection of Christ As they were saying this, Jesus Himself stood among them. But they were startled and frightened, and supposed that they saw a spirit. And He said to them, “Why are you troubled, and why do questionings […]
Remembering the Armenian Genocide, April 24, 1915 On this day, April 24, in 1915, the Armenian Genocide transpired. This was the Ottoman government’s systematic extermination of 1.5 million Armenians, mostly Ottoman citizens within the Ottoman Empire and its successor state, the Republic of Turkey. Hundreds of thousands of people were forcibly converted to Islam to […]