“It is a great joy to announce the creation of these three new full scholarships,” said His Eminence, Archbishop Michael, Seminary Rector. “The scholarships will cover tuition, room, and board, allowing these seminarians to focus on their priestly formation and enter ministry in the Holy Orthodox Church without any debt.”
The scholarships are named in honor of three current Antiochian hierarchs—the Patriarch John X Scholarship, the Metropolitan Joseph Scholarship, and the Bishop Thomas Scholarship.
“Saint Tikhon’s is honored to continue its long history of training young men for ministry in the Antiochian Archdiocese,” said Archpriest Dr. Steven Voytovich, Seminary Dean.
Marshall Makoul Goodge, a second-year seminarian from Saint Paul Antiochian Orthodox Church, Emmaus, PA, believes that Antiochian students will find a welcoming home at Saint Tikhon’s.
“There is no better place, to my mind, for priestly formation than Saint Tikhon’s,” he said. “The combination of the sound doctrinal, pastoral, and liturgical instruction at the seminary with the robust liturgical and prayer life at the monastery, the grounds of which were consecrated by our own Saint Raphael, provides the perfect balance between academics and spiritual life.”
St. Andrew’s campers with “special guest” during 2015’s Horse Week.
While it may seem hard for some to believe—given the weather of late in some regions—summer really is “just around the corner,” and organizers of Saint Andrew Camp, Jewell, NY and Florida’s Saint Christopher Camp are getting an early start in putting out calls for counselors and staff members for their 2016 seasons.
Saint Andrew’s Camp—the Orthodox Church in America’s oldest—is now recruiting counselors and volunteers for its varied summer programs. The weekly program features specific themes:
June 19-June 25—Work Week
June 26-July 2—Orientation Week
July 3-July 9—Teen Week
July 10-July 16—Horse Week
July 17-July 23—Art Week
July 24-July 30—Ecology Week
July 31-Aug 6—Music Week
For more information on how you can share your talents and skills at Saint Andrew’s this summer, please contact Shelby Duchow at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Young adult counselors and volunteers also are being sought for Saint Christopher Camp, held at Camp Sparta, Sebring, FL for its one week program that runs July 10 through 16, 2016. According to Priest Daniel Hickman, “this is a great opportunity to get involved with Orthodox Christian youth and gain valuable work experience in the process.” Interested individuals are asked to contact Father Daniel at email@example.com.
Staff and volunteer opportunities at other camps will be announced as received. In the meantime, those seeking information on the OCA’s network of summer camps are invited to contact Andrew Boyd, OCA Youth Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org, who recently facilitated the Pan-Orthodox Camp and Youth Workers’ Conference held in Dallas, TX January 21-23, 2016.
Princeton, NJ: Mother of God Mission celebrates opening of new church
Archbishop Michael with clergy and faithful.
His Eminence, Archbishop Michael presided at ribbon cutting ceremonies at the newly completed Mother of God “Joy of All Who Sorrow” Mission, Princeton, NJ, January 29-30, 2016.
The parish is the spiritual home to over 50 faithful who for years had been worshipping in rented facilities, most recently at Princeton Day School.
“We’re almost there,” said Archpriest Peter A. Baktis, who was assigned Rector last March. “When I got here I inherited the building project, which started more than five years ago. It was a shell. But we’ve raised money and were able to complete the interior. The big work has been site work — digging a drainage ditch, grading, asphalt, that kind of thing.”
Archbishop Michael greets faithful after first Liturgy in new church.
Initially planted in Rocky Hill, NJ in 1998, the mission purchased the property at 904 Cherry Hill Road in Princeton. “We were going to convert a house, but the project was expanded,” Father Peter said. “The foundation of the house was enlarged, and that made the church deeper.
“I came to Princeton with no historical understanding of the community at all. I came with an open mind,” Father Peter continued. “And it has been wonderful. It’s a challenge to finish a product, especially coming in halfway through!”
With the building project drawing to a close, Father Peter said focus will turn to programs, services, and Bible study. Two annual symposia—in the fall and the spring—are in the planning stages. “We’re looking for a topic that would be of interest to the greater Princeton area,” Father Peter said. “We want to do a weekend with a keynote and other speakers. We’re also interested in doing outreach to the community, particularly in Trenton.”
Bozeman, MT: An “if you build, they will come” sort of thing!
With its bright red siding and gleaming gold cross, Saint Anthony the Great Mission has quickly become a visible landmark as Bozeman, MT’s first and only Orthodox Christian church. One year ago, parishioners began the construction of their new building “from the ground up,” and since then, their numbers have steadily grown.
According to Priest David Morrison, the community ministers to over 100 faithful, with around 80 souls typically present for services on Sunday. He said the bright new building has increased the mission’s visibility within the community.
“It’s kind of been a ‘if you build it, they will come’ sort of thing,” said Father David. “We can’t believe it, we’re just this small parish but we have this truly incredible space.”
Father David said the new church is the first step in the ongoing development of the mission’s property, with a “master plan” in place that includes a cemetery, a community garden, and a larger worship space to accommodate between 200 and 300 people.
In 2012, the mission purchased its 20-acre plot of land on which the church was erected during the summer of 2014. Before then, services were held in rented facilities.
“This was a really big step for us to buy land, build our own space, and have a permanent spot,” Father David said, adding that numerous parishioners stepped forward to offer their own unique skill sets to the building project.
“I was amazed on a regular basis as we built our new church,” said Subdeacon John Heilman. “It turned out we had among the members of our small congregation an experienced finance man, a certified architect, a certified land surveyor, a crew of skilled builders and several artists who knew how to put color, shape and texture together. Hours of volunteer labor in the construction must be up in the thousands.”
Assigned to Saint Anthony’s three years ago, Father David stepped into the parish just as plans for the new church started rolling. Subdeacon John and his wife, Judith, have watched the mission grow and transition since 2005, though.
“We were previously crowded into a small storefront next to a dog grooming studio—not a site conducive to sacred worship,” he chuckled. “The best part of the new space is that it is a church. It looks like one from the outside, and on the inside it is clearly a beautiful place for Orthodox Christian worship.”
Ft. Leonard Wood, MO: OCA priest keynote speaker at MLK Day celebration
Fr. Moses with Brig. Gen. Maria Gervais, US Army Chemical, Biological, Raiological and Nuclear School Commandant, at MLK celebration.
Archpriest Moses Berry, Rector of the Theotokos “Unexpected Joy” Mission, Ash Grove, MO, delivered the keynote address at the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. observance and luncheon at the Pershing Community Center at Fort Leonard Wood, MO in mid-January 2016.
In addition to his pastoral duties, Father Moses is the Curator of the Ozarks Afro-American Heritage Museum. His family is well known in southwest Missouri as being an African-American family living on the same property for more than 125 years, and he has worked hard over the years to share that legacy and preserve African-American history in the Ozarks.
“I live in a house that my great grandfather and great grandmother built in 1871,” said Father Moses. “I was raised in a place where there was community.”
Father Moses went on to relate the story of Fanny Murray, a freed slave living in his hometown after the Civil War. His grandfather built a house for her on the site of his present church.
“She didn’t have anywhere to live. She had to rely on the kindness of strangers,” he said.
To illustrate the celebration’s theme—“A Day On, Not a Day Off!”—Father Moses talked about Murray’s daughter, Olivia, who died in 1991. He recalled the many times he would see her walking around town, always carrying a basket filled with eggs and produce from her farm which she would share with families down on their luck. His mother told him that “she saved many lives around here, including ours.
“If we want to know how we can not take a day off, but have a day on, it is to minister to one another,” Father Moses emphasized, explaining that in this instance “to minister” is synonymous with doing kindness for those in need and being willing to go a little bit further than is necessary. He went on to speak about the value of remembering the past while explaining several artifacts pertaining to African-American history, and concluded his presentation by calling upon his audience to remember that Dr. King wanted “fairness for everyone.”
“How do we demonstrate that fairness? By loving those who, spitefully use and say all manner of evil against us. That is how we honor Martin Luther King,” Father Moses said.
Following Father Moses’ address, Col. Daryl Hood, 3rd Chemical Brigade commander, honored him with a commemorative plaque.
Poulsbo, WA: Deacon James Ferrenberg participates in church consecration in Uganda
Deacon James [far left] with other deacons at church consecration in Uganda.
Deacon James Ferrenberg of Saint Elizabeth the New Martyr Church, Poulsbo, WA, recently had the rare opportunity to serve with His Holiness, Pope and Patriarch Theodoros II of Alexandria and All Africa at the consecration of the newly completed Saint Sophia Church, Luwafu, Uganda—a suburb of Kampala, the nation’s capital.
Deacon James was in Uganda as part of his international work with the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, WA. As a researcher there, he regularly travels to Uganda to assist in the development of a cancer center.
“Like many communities in the US, Saint Sophia’s had long hoped to have a consecrated temple,” said Archpriest John Strickland, Rector of Saint Elizabeth Church. “Patriarch Theodoros made the long journey to preside at its consecration, concelebrating with bishops from Uganda, Sudan and Rwanda and over 20 priests and deacons.”
While in Uganda, Deacon James also visited the Saint Nicholas Uganda Children’s Fund, a charitable agency to which the faithful of Saint Elizabeth Church send regular donations.
Sebring, FL: St. Christopher Camp seeks youth leaders
Saint Christopher Camp, held at Camp Sparta, Sebring, FL, is seeking young adults to volunteer as camp counselors July 10-16, 2016. According to Priest Daniel Hickman, “this is a great opportunity to get involved with Orthodox Christian youth and gain valuable work experience in the process.” Interested individuals are asked to contact Father Daniel at email@example.com.