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VOL. 67 – NO. 1195


2002 e-mail:

To da he Virirgg in bbear ear dayy, tthe earss H im wwho ho is ttrr ansc nt, anscee nde ndent, and tthe he ear ese nts eartt h pr prese esents t he ca im cavv e ttoo HHim w ho is bbee yo nd rreac eac h. yond each. els, alo ng wwititithh Ang ngels, along im. she herr ds gglololorr ififyy HHim. shepp he T he M ag he Mag agii mak makee tthe heirir wa wayy t o HHim im bbyy a star star.. Fo r a ne hild neww cchild has bbee e n bboo r n ffoo r us, t he GGoo d bbee f o re alalll ag es. ages. Kontakion of Christmas



Archiepiscopal Encyclical




ROUNDTABLE ON THE FAMILY Convened by Archbishop Demetrios

The Nativity of Christ December 25, 2002 To the Most Reverend Hierarchs, the Reverend Priests and Deacons, the Monks and Nuns, the Presidents and Members of the Parish Councils of the Greek Orthodox Communities, the Day and Afternoon Schools, the Philoptochos Sisterhoods, the Youth, the Hellenic Organizations, and the entire Greek Orthodox Family in America, My Beloved Brothers and Sisters in Christ, I greet you on the joyous occasion of the Feast of the Nativity of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, a miraculous event that took place two millennia ago, imparting an indelible effect upon our human race and upon all creation. For on that holy and magnificent day in Bethlehem, God in His perfect love for us condescended to take on human flesh; the Virgin Mary gave birth to the Incarnate Logos; and the entry of salvation into our world was revealed in the fullness of time unto all humanity. The birth of Christ, foretold for centuries by the prophets, was an event of cosmic significance, impacting peoples of all lands and civilizations and affecting the order and future of all things seen and unseen. Thus, this was no ordinary birth. The Creator of the Universe entered the visible world through the womb of the Virgin. The King of Kings and Lord of Lords took on flesh, beginning His life among us in an astonishingly humble way. We must wonder at this humble beginning of our Lord. In all His power and glory, He entered the human race at the weakest and most vulnerable stage of life. He was born under inhospitable conditions, in a stable surrounded by animals, away from the comfort of a home and family. Further, early in His life He became a refugee, taken by His mother and Joseph to Egypt, a land of exile. Indeed, the manner in which Christ became man reveals much to us about the tremendous power and love of God. He was not afraid to appear on earth under the most humiliating conditions being “despised and rejected by others, a man of suffering and acquainted with infirmity” (Isaiah 53:3). Into the midst of a threatening, chaotic world He came in full control of His divine plan for our salvation. He would be “wounded for our transgressions and crushed for our iniquities” (Isaiah 53:5) but through the glorious power of His Resurrection He would lead us from death to life. Our contemporary world is no less threatening. We may have the advantages of modern technology, high standards of living, and the benefits of a free society. However, as we continue to witness day after day, we live in a world tormented by terrorism and war, plagued by famine and disease, and infected with sin that destroys relationships and lives. But we can find strength in knowing that the one who was in control of time and history as He entered this world as an infant, is the one who controls the destiny of our lives. In the worst of conditions, we do not have a God “who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who in every respect has been tested as we are, yet without sin” (Hebrews 4:15). This is Jesus, the Son of God, who came to be with us, and in our frailty, struggles, and even in death itself, reveal to us the power from above that is offered to those who believe. Through the celebration of this great and glorious Feast of our Church may God empower us in faith and hope to face the challenges of our world. In this season of the Nativity may our witness to the Incarnation of Christ offer the truth of life and salvation to all; and may the peace, joy, and presence of our Lord be with all of you, especially in the dawning New Year. Have a joyous Christmas and a blessed 2003.

With paternal love in Christ,

† Archbishop Demetrios of America

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DIRECTOR & EXECUTIVE EDITOR: Stavros H. Papagermanos EDITOR: Jim Golding (Chryssoulis) PRODUCTION MANAGER: Costa Eliopoulos COLOR CORRECTION: Abel Montoya ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT: Soula Podaras CONTRIBUTING EDITOR: Nicholas Manginas


FR. SITARAS, St. Basil Academy director addresses the participants of the ‘Roundtable on the Family’ held at the academy.

GARRISON, N.Y. – Family and marriage professionals, clergy, and Archdiocesan leaders gathered Saturday, Dec. 7 at St. Basil Academy at the invitation of Archbishop Demetrios. The “Roundtable on the Family” is the initial step of an intense focus on the critical needs of today’s families. by Fr. Nektarios Morrow

In his opening remarks to the participants, the Archbishop stated, “The significance of the family and the crises faced by families today necessitate that we do everything possible for the family. Think of the impact, the consequences, the happiness that can be brought to individual families through expanding our ministry in this area.”

“ O ur vvisio isio del isionn is ttoo ccrr eate a mo model inst itut ioionn wwhic hic institut itutio hichh wwilililll bbee a leade leaderr in tthe he ffield ield ooff famil familyy car caree amo among ng t he CChr hr ist ian de no minat ioions ns ooff hrist istian deno nominat minatio c o nte aryy Am eerr ica.” ntemm ppoo r ar During the meeting participants reviewed some of the most critical challenges facing families today and discussed resources for addressing family needs. Three committees were organized to analyze some of these resources in preparation for a second meeting in early March. Following this meeting, plans and information will be presented for discussion and review at the spring meetings of the Eparchial Synod and the Archdiocesan Council. The Roundtable follows the emphasis Archbishop Demetrios gave to the fam-

Periodicals’ postage paid at New York, NY 10001 and at additional mailing offices. The Orthodox Observer is produced entirely inhouse. Past issues can be found on the Internet, at http:// E-mail: Articles do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America which are expressed in official statements so labeled. Subscription rates are $12 per year. Canada $25.00. Overseas Air Mail, $55.00 per year. $1.50 per copy. Subscriptions for the membership of the Greek Orthodox Church in America are paid through their contribution to the Archdiocese. Of this contribution, $5.00 is forwarded to the Orthodox Observer. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to ORTHODOX OBSERVER, 8 East 79th Street, New York, NY 10021

ily in his keynote address at the 36th ClergyLaity Congress held in Los Angeles in July. In his speech, the Archbishop announced the initiation of plans for The Center for Family Care. This center will develop programs and resources that will address issues related to preparation for marriage, marital difficulties, mixed marriages, clergy families, and families of divorce. It will also produce video, audio, and printed material relevant to these areas and make these resources available to parishes and families. Further, the center will organize seminars and educational opportunities that will address areas of family life and development, as well as offer counseling resources via telephone or the Internet. Referring to the importance of the Center the Archbishop stated, “Our vision is to create a model institution which will be a leader in the field of family care among the Christian denominations of contemporary America.”


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Archbishop’s Encyclical ...............  2 Archdiocese News ..................  6-7, 13 Challenge ...................................  29 Classifieds ...................................  28 Clergy Update ................................  7 Diocese News ...................... 22, 30-31 Ecumenical Patriarchate ..............  4-5 Family Care ...................................  12 Greek Section ............................ 15-19 HC/HC Report ...............................  24 Holy Scripture Readings ...............  20 Letters ............................................  10 Missions ........................................  20 Opinions ........................................  10 Parish Profile .................................  25 People ...........................................  25 Religious Education ......................  9 Scholarships .................................  8 Voice of Philoptochos ..................  27




SEPTEMBER 11 RELIEF FUND Begins Final Distribution


ith individual checks to the 14 Greek Orthodox widows of Sep tember 11 totaling $280,000, the Archdiocese has neared final distribution of all the monies collected by the September 11th Relief Fund. Established immediately after the horrific events of September 11th by Archbishop Demetrios, the Fund has collected more than $2,108,000. “The outpouring of love from the faithful of our Archdiocese has been overwhelming and testifies to the magnanimity of our people who responded so generously to the needs of those so adversely affected by the barbaric attacks,” stated Archbishop Demetrios. His Eminence continued, “Within hours we were at the site to not only witness the devastation but to offer prayers on behalf of the innocent victims. While we can do nothing to replace those lost in this tragedy, we felt a moral and sacred obligation to help those left behind and we can be proud of the quick response of our Church. Representatives of the Archdiocese were in communication immediately with the families as soon as the identity of victims was made known, and the Church has offered whatever spiritual, emotional and material support She could to the widows, the children, the parents and all the loved ones of those lost.” From its inception, gifts large and small poured into the Archdiocese. From the grant and gifts of $587,550 from Leadership 100 and its members to the gift from the Holy Trinity parish of New Rochelle (NY), which donated the proceeds of their annual festival ($52,000), to the individual dollars sent in from Sunday school children, the response of the faithful was swift and selfless. Within a short period of time, grants were being sent to the families of Greek and other Orthodox victims to help get them through the holiday season. “From the start we felt an awesome responsibility,” explained Bishop Andonios, who as director of the Department of Philanthropy, directly oversees the Fund. “The members of the September 11th Relief Fund Committee did their utmost to see that the monies entrusted to the Archdiocese by the faithful were given where they were most needed.” After careful review, the Committee decided to award grants on an escalating scale (the younger children receiving higher amounts) to the 20 orphaned children of the Greek Orthodox community. Since it was impossible to adequately investigate the individual needs of those outside our community, it was decided to make donations to two of the larger Funds, the Cantor Fitzgerald Fund and to the Fund of the Port Authority Police. These two groups did not enjoy the tremendous support from the community-at-large. We felt a special affinity for Cantor Fitzgerald not only because they lost the highest number of employees, over 600 of their close to 1,000 personnel, but also because six of those lost were members of the Greek Orthodox community. As per the policy of the Archdiocese of “full accountability and transparency,” a financial report on the fund



NJ Governor Hosts Reception for Archbishop, Greek Americans DRUMTHWACKET, N.J. — Archbishop Demetrios and representatives of the Greek American community were honored on Dec. 3 at a reception hosted by the Gov. James E. McGreevey at the Governor’s Mansion. Several hundred people attended, including New Jersey officials, Ambassador Eleftherios Anghelopoulos, minister deputy chief of Mission of the Greek embassy in Washington; Consul General of Greece in New York Dimitri Platis, Consul General of Cyprus in New York Vasileios Philippou, the Diocese Chancellor the Very Rev. Alexander Leondis, area clergy and numerous leaders and members of the Greek-American community. In addition to Ambassador Anghelopoulos and the consuls general, remarks were offered by Tassos Efstratiades, founder and past chairman of the Greek Chamber of Commerce, and by Dr. P. Roy Vagelos, retired CEO of Merck & Co. A special presentation was made to the governor by his assistant counsel, Bill Matsikoudis. Performances were given by the Hellenic dance groups of two area communities, St. George Church of Asbury Park and St. Thomas of Cherry Hill. Archbishop Demetrios, expressing his gratitude for the event and those attending said, “You have before you, Mr. Governor, a representation of the highest possible quality of people, and I am sure you are very happy and blessed to have this type of constituency.” The Archbishop referred to the desire of the ancient Greeks to know truth and how this has been combined in the Orthodox Christian faith with an emphasis on love. In speaking on the implications of this he stated, “How grateful we are for what has been given to us and for the mission given to us to offer continuously without end; because Orthodox people are people of eternity who know of no ends and no limits in thinking, in offering, and in giving.” Following the address, Gov. McGreevey issued an official proclamation on the occasion of the reception stating to the Archbishop, “We are humbled and honored by your decency, your love, and your integrity.” The governor praised the Archhas been an integral part of the Archdiocese September 11th web page and has been accessible to everyone logging onto the site. “We wanted to respect the privacy of the families who suffered such a loss, so we have refrained from including names of those who received grants but at the same time we felt the need to keep the faithful updated on what was being done with their donations,” His Grace continued. “No administrative fees have been deducted from the Fund and all monies collected have gone to those in need. I don’t know how many other Funds can make that noteworthy claim.” The members of the September 11th Committee include Archbishop Demetrios, Bishops Savas and Andonios, Fr. Alex Karloutsos, Michael Jaharis, Peter Dion, Manny Demos and Jerry Dimitriou. The financial report can be accessed on the September 11 web page on the Archdiocese web site www., where it can be viewed under “Special Sites,” or accessed directly at: september11/relief_fund_report.asp.

Peter Christopoulos

N.J. GOVERNOR James E. McGreevey welcomes his guests. Seated next to the Archbishop are Fr. Alexander Leondis, Ambassador Eleftherios Anghelopoulos and Consul General of Cyprus Vassilios Philippou.

Peter Christopoulos

HIS EMINENCE Archbishop Demetrios presents Governor McGreevey a silver ornate icon of Theotokos and Child as Fr. Leondis, Chancellor of the Diocese of New Jersey looks on.

bishop’s leadership of the Greek Orthodox Church in America and thanked him for his compassion and service to the communities and families who suffered such

great loss on September 11, 2001. Gov. McGreevey also expressed his appreciation for the Greek-American community’s contributions to New Jersey.



ARCHBISHOP DEMETRIOS with members of the Archdiocesan District Council who met Dec. 11 in preparation for the Feb. 8 district Clergy-Laity Conference to be held at the Church of Our Savior in Rye, N.Y.




PATRIARCHAL PROCLAMATION ON THE NATIVITY OF CHRIST ðB A R T H O L O M E W BY THE GRACE OF GOD ARCHBISHOP OF CONSTANTINOPLE, NEW ROME, AND ECUMENICAL PATRIARCH, TO THE PLENITUDE OF THE CHURCH, GRACE, PEACE, AND MERCY FROM CHRIST OUR SAVIOR, BORN IN BETHLEHEM December 25, 2002 “The Savior visited us from on high… And those in darkness and shadow found the truth.” Beloved brothers and children in the Lord, The search for truth is an ancient and universal quest; numerous as well as laborious efforts have been and are still being undertaken by humanity for its attainment. It is therefore reasonable for us to seek truth, because its knowledge delivers from error and its consequences. Unfortunately, though, we are not always on the right track in searching for truth. In addition, there was and still is a plethora of false teachings which at times demanded and continue to demand our validation as accurate expressions of it. Nowadays especially, more often than ever, we are approached by supporters of eastern or other antiquated teachings, who present them as new and attribute to them secular or supernatural powers. By promising the gain of spiritual experiences and various forms of might they try to convince us that their truth is whole and their power the strongest in the world. But, brothers and children, we know from experience that the Birth of our Lord Jesus Christ, which we festively celebrate today, “has risen the light of truth in the world”, as the Scriptures read. Through the Birth of our Lord Jesus Christ “ the people who sat in darkness have seen a great light, and for those who sat in the region and shadow of death light has dawned ” (Matt. 4, 16). The holy hymnodist employs his poetic ability to herald the same message “ we who sit in darkness and shadow found the truth.” This truth we found is not just a mental notion, a statement about the world, God and human beings. It is the Creator of the world Himself, the Son and Word of God, our Lord Jesus Christ, Who was humbly born in a poor cave for our salvation, Who revealed to us His infinite love for each of us, be it pious or sinner, in an ontological and actual way. It is the same One Who reassured us that He is the way and truth and life and if we see His truth we do not need any other truth, because He is the only and perfect truth.

We do not need any pseudo-teachers, whether they originate from the east or anywhere else, or their misleading promises. On the contrary, we know that the magi, although they were misled in every other respect, came from the east to worship our Lord Jesus Christ as king. This Jesus Christ, Who out of love for man shed His royal glory and became human, so that man will resemble God, we ought to love and follow with all our soul and mind. Let us follow the example of the humble shepherds of Bethlehem, but also the example of the magi to whom “ the star has shown the Logos existing before the sun who came to eliminate the sin”, and let us close our ears to all contemporary magicians and shepherds who do not follow Christ, but point to other false saviors. Beloved brothers and children in the Lord, our salvation rests with Christ and no one else. As individuals, nations and humanity we only seek Christ’s benevolent offerings. If we decide to stay away from Him, we will remain in darkness and in the shadow of lies and death and we will reap the sufferings of humanity, which will be entangled in the fatal paths of falsehood and suffer hard because of it. Grace and truth came through Jesus Christ (John 1, 17). Joy, peace, salvation and everything good can only be found near Him. Glory to God in the highest, Who consented to allow His Son and Word to incarnate so that we receive His whole truth and salvaging grace. Glory, praise and thanksgiving to Jesus Christ Who was born in the humble surroundings of the manger and to the Holy Spirit, Which constitutes the institution of Church and supports and inspires us the faithful. Having reminded you of this, we joyfully bestow upon you our paternal wishes and Patriarchal blessing, praying wholeheartedly that peace and joy will fill the days of the holy feast of Christmas and the upcoming new year of the Lord’s virtue. The grace and abundant mercy of the One who was born in Bethlehem of the Virgin Theotokos Maria and was laid in the manger for our salvation, our Lord Jesus Christ, may be with you all, beloved brothers and children. Amen.

Christmas 2002, Phanar

Patriarch of Constantinople ð BARTHOLOMEW Fervent intercessor to God for all

hat shall I say! And how shall I describe this birth to you? For this wonder fills me with astonishment. The Ancient of Days has become an infant. He who sits upon the sublime and heavenly throne now lies in a manger. For this he assumed my body, that I may become capable of his word; taking my flesh he gives me his Spirit; and so he bestowing and I receiving, he prepares for me the treasure of life. He takes my flesh to sanctify me; he gives me his Spirit, that he may save me.


St. John Chrysostom, Christmas Homily

A blessed Christmas to all,

Serving Orthodoxy and Hellenism in America






Ecumenical Patriarch Sponsors Islamic-Christian Conference in Bahrain BAHRAIN – More than 150 religious leaders, scholars, government and nonprofit organizations representatives converged on this tiny kingdom in the Persian Gulf to attend the 10th Islamic-Christian Dialogue Conference under the auspices of the Ecumenical Patriarchate. The meeting, held Oct. 28-30, resulted from His All Holiness’ official visit to Bahrain in September 2000 and meeting with its king, Shaikh Hamad bin-Isa Al Khalifa. The meeting was part of the Ecumenical Patriarch’s worldwide initiatives for peace, and was co-sponsored by the Arab Muslim monarch, who told delegates the conference presented a “tremendous opportunity” to uphold the values of tolerance and harmony with the need to fight extremism in all faiths. It took place between two rounds of Bahrain’s first open democratic election to the Chamber of Deputies. The conference drew Muslim and Arab speakers, and representatives of the Orthodox and Oriental churches, the Roman Catholic and Protestant churches in Europe, the Middle East, Africa and India. After three intensive days of nine sessions, the Bahrain Declaration was issued, calling on all peoples and nations to reinforce dialogue in search of peaceful coexistence and “the negation of violence,” to exchange views in the service of humanity “sparing mankind the dangers of conflict,” to remind all peoples and nations of the noble and common principles embodied in the messages of both Islam and Christianity; and to support the efforts of Muslim and Christian scholars and intellectuals to crystallize the bases for peaceful coexistence and mutual respect in accordance with the teachings of both faiths.

In opening the conference, Bishop Emmanuel of Reghion, executive director of the Office of Interreligious and Intercultural Relations of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, read a welcoming message from His All Holiness who said that while “the international tensions of our times render dialogue an arduous undertaking, it is no less true that they render it that much more essential, for the simple reason that dialogue in good faith is the only path to avert the most disastrous outcome of war which threatens the world.” Bishop Emmanuel opened the conference stressing the challenge of globalization

The 10th Session of the Muslim Christian Dialogue Conference in accordance with its rooted belief in the importance of dialogue on all levels, Bahrain, calls all peoples and nations to work on reinforcing the dialogue methodology in search of peaceful coexistence and the negation of violence; it also calls for exchanging views on contemporary issues in the service of humanity and for achieving security and happiness for mankind, and sparing mankind the dangers of conflict, reminding all peoples and nations at the same time of the noble principles embodied in both messages of Islam and Christianity for the achievement of mutual coexistence, the respect of religious and national specificities, encouraging constructive cooperation and supporting the efforts of Muslim and Christian scholars and intellectuals in crystallizing bases of peaceful coexistence and respect for the other, in accordance with the teachings of Islam and Christianity. And building on the aims of this Conference in which Muslims and Christians assembled for constructive purposeful dialogue, the participants assert the following : 1. Continue with dialogue, and encourage efforts aimed at cooperation for achieving peaceful coexistence. 2. Cooperate, after the Interreligious Dialogue, in healing the traumatic experiences of the historic past, by taking concrete initiatives addressed to the local society, so as to remove negative prejudices and to foster respect among their faithful for the particularity of other religious traditions. 3. Work together in an international perspective on modern interreligious dia-

logue to promote the idea of peace with freedom and social justice and to extend protection for human rights to relations between peoples and nations on a global scale. 4. Realize that violence breeds violence, and suppression breeds animosity and hatred, so concerned authorities should stand up to tackle violence through constructive dialogue rather than repression. 5. Highlight religion’s principles, tolerance and mercy to mankind and give the real image for its purposes which were drawn to achieve happiness for mankind and establish security, safety and peaceful coexistence on earth. 6. Respect national, religious and cultural specificities for each society. 7. Remove obstructions that stop people from understanding properly and correctly their religion. 8. Urge civil society organizations in every community to assume their role in protecting individuals from confused intellectual invasion, and protecting them mentally, psychologically and ethically from the negative aspects in this regard. 9. Care for the rights of the human being and to work towards realizing his security and safety by making sure that concerned authorities are doing what they are entrusted with in this regard. 10. Spread the right understanding of Islam and Christianity to all concerned individuals through education and mass media a correct method that reverts to authentic accepted sources of each religion for information on that religion. May God Almighty grant success to mankind in the road to righteousness and wisdom.

and migration, creating multi-religious and multicultural societies all over the world. The Final Report and Recommendations called for the establishment of a permanent joint secretariat for Muslim-Christian dialogue between the Kingdom of Bahrain and the Ecumenical Patriarchate. The Ministries of Labor and Social Affairs and Justice and Islamic Affairs sponsored the Organizing Committee for the Conference with participation by the representatives of the 17 Christian churches in the 30- island kingdom of some

650,000 inhabitants. The Ecumenical Patriarch’s peace initiatives became more intensive after the catastrophic event of Sept. 11. He organized a meeting of the three monotheistic religions, Judaism, Christianity and Islam in Brussels the following December, cochaired by Romano Prodi, president of the European Commission. Titled, “The Peace of God in the World.” the interreligious meeting issued the Brussels Declaration that called for regret and repentance for crimes committed by members of religious communities; affirmed that extremists do not N. MANGINAS reflect the teachings of these religions, and therefore religious beliefs are not responsible for their acts; and, reiterated the earlier Berne Declaration and Bosporus Declaration (of 1992 and 1994, respectively) that “a crime committed in the name of religion is a crime against religion.” In mid-October, during His All Holiness’ visit to Qatar, the possibility was discussed of jointly sponsoring an IslamicChristian dialogue there in 2004. Tentative plans are being made for Orthodox Christian sponsorship of an Islamic-Christian dialogue in Greece in 2003.

∆∞•π¢π∞ ¶√À ™Àªº∂ƒ√À¡ The Main Points of the Bahrain Declaration

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NEW YORK – Epiphany: The Festival of Lights, a special production of Greek Orthodox Telecommunications (GOTelecom) with the National Council of Churches and the Interfaith Broadcasting Commission, will be available for broadcast throughout the country at the discretion of local NBC affiliates between Christmas and the end of January. The program will also be broadcast nationally on the Hallmark Channel on Sunday, Jan. 5 at 6 a.m. Eastern and Pacific Time, 5 a.m. Central Time. (To review a complete listing of affiliates, visit The Archbishop Iakovos Leadership 100 Endowment Fund, with additional funds from Faith and Values Media, is providing major underwriting for this program. Epiphany or Theophany (the manifestation of God) commemorates the baptism of Jesus in the Jordan River by St. John the Baptist. Of all the observances of Epiphany throughout the world, none is more deeply religious in tradition and significance or more colorful, than in the Greek Orthodox Church; and nowhere does the observance take place on the scale witnessed in Tarpon Springs, Florida, where Greek Epiphany and its traditions were introduced to America more than 100 years ago. This one-hour production presents the timeless truths of Orthodox Christianity as it tells the story of the celebration of Epiphany in Tarpon Springs, reaches back in time with an overview of Orthodox faith and traditions, and seeks to foster an understanding of the true personal and universal meaning of Epiphany. The program includes contemporary location footage and archival still photos to illustrate and bring to life interviews from several noted Orthodox theologians and scholars led by Archbishop Demetrios.

Program Overview Entering Tarpon Springs, normally a city of 35,000, is like entering a small part of Greece, especially on Jan. 6 when Epiphany is celebrated with great joy and pageantry. Hundreds of pennants float in the breeze; American and Greek flags fly everywhere. Thousands of people from every faith and denomination, from practically every state in the country come to witness the impressive ceremony, which begins at St. Nicholas Cathedral, an exquisite Byzantine structure. As the Liturgy continues, interview comments present the Orthodox meaning of Epiphany and baptism, including

the ecological and social implications of the blessing of the waters. Visuals include historic sites in Israel, the place of the life and ministry of Christ, and iconography related to His baptism. Further comments reflect on these places and events and relate them to the celebration of Epiphany and to Orthodox faith and practice. Following the Divine Liturgy and blessing of the waters, Archbishop Demetrios, hierarchs, clergy, dignitaries and thousands of people form an impressive procession to Spring Bayou, with school children in traditional costumes, choir members, Greek Folk dance groups from throughout the United States and Canada, civic officials and representatives of Hellenic organizations. There, an invocation is recited, a young lady releases a white dove to fly over the bayou, and the Archbishop casts a white cross into the water. Some 50 young men dive for the cross, each seeking the honor of retrieving it. The winner then kneels with the cross before the Archbishop for a blessing. Viewers will see joyful images of the Epiphany celebration, while comments will emphasize that our lives are illuminated by the Light of Christ, a light that leads all of us to offer our faith and our service to others.

Annual Program of the NCC Every year the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA selects a faith group to produce a special program for NBC television stations to air during the holiday season. Epiphany: The Festival of Lights is being offered to NBC affiliated and NBC owned and operated stations throughout the country. The scheduling of this type of program is dependent upon each affiliate’s recognition of viewer interest. To help with scheduling the Epiphany special in your area, contact your local NBC station and ask them to air this holiday program on their station anytime between December 25 and the end of January. Epiphany: The Festival of Lights is available for purchase beginning on Jan. 2. To order by mail send $25 plus $6 shipping and handling to GOTelecom, 8 East 79th Street, NY, NY 10021, or call (212) 570-3588. For more specific information and for a viewing schedule, contact Marissa Costidis, managing director of GOTelecom at (212) 570-3588 or email at To find areas carrying the program log on to

2003 Archdiocesan Yearbook Available in January





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NEW YORK–The 2003 Yearbook of the Archdiocese will be available in early January. Highlighted in this year’s book is the Clergy-Laity Congress and, in a continuing effort to serve as a resource for the media and communities, a history of the Archdiocese and expanded resource directories. Archbishop Demetrios in his prologue says: “I am pleased to offer the 2003 edition of the Yearbook of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, an offering which allows us to gain greater familiarity with the structure of our Holy Orthodox Church and the various institutions, departments ministries and parishes of our Archdiocese...We also acquire a heightened understanding of the tremendous capabilities and unique position of our Greek Orthodox Church in America to address the contemporary concerns of our society and, as a consequence, to ‘offer our Orthodox faith to contemporary America.”

Designed as an easy-to-read, accurate reference handbook of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese, the 266-page new edition includes updated directories of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, Archdiocesan departments and institutions, parishes, priests, religious and secular media resources and an 8-page color spread on two upcoming television specials, Epiphany: The Festival of Light and the Other Holy Land, the visits of Archbishop Demetrios to Greece and Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew to the United States and the Athens 2004 Olympics. Limited prepaid copies may be obtained by calling (212) 570-3588 or sending a check/money order or credit card information for $18, plus $4.00 for handling, payable to Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America. Mail to: Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America • Attn: Yearbook, 8 East 79th Street; New York, NY 10021





St. Nicholas Church Part of 9/11 Memorial Effort The New York Times reported on Nov. 15 that the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation has appointed two committees to oversee the 9/11 memorial effort, as part of what the agency’s chairman called a “new phase” in rebuilding downtown. One of the committees includes the Rev. Alexander Karloutsos who will represent St. Nicholas Church, which was across Liberty Street from the trade center and was destroyed in the collapse of the twin towers. The public will be able to see exhibits in December showing the new plans for the World Trade Center site. After focusing for much of the last year on the design of the trade center site, officials have recently moved to integrate that planning with similar efforts for the memorial. One of the memorial committees, with 10 members, will oversee the drafting of a mission statement, outlining the memorial’s purpose and the experience that planners want the site’s visitors to have. A second committee, with 11 members, will draft a plan for the memorial, outlining its general content, including the names of victims and any desired features or exhibits. Seven of the 21 committee members are relatives of people killed in the attack on the trade center last year, and 12, includ-

ing most of those relatives of victims, are members of various advisory committees appointed by the development corporation in January to assist the rebuilding effort. Other members include representatives from the Police and Fire departments who worked at the site during the rescue and recovery effort, downtown residents and business owners. The new designs for the trade center site from seven teams of architects will be displayed to the public in an exhibition in the Winter Garden at the World Financial Center. Officials of the development corporation, which is overseeing the rebuilding effort, have refused to comment on any of the details of the work being undertaken by the seven teams, which were charged with conceiving designs for the trade center site and nearby areas. But they have promised that the work will not resemble the renderings of six site plans that drew nearly universal disdain when they were unveiled last summer. One architecture team has said it needs a room with an 18-foot ceiling to display its model, said two rebuilding officials. Another design team has a scale model of Lower Manhattan that measures roughly 20 feet in length.

New Trustees Appointed to St. Photios Foundation ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. — The Very Rev. Nicholas Graff, executive director of St. Photios Greek Orthodox National Shrine, recently announced the appointment of the 2003-2004 St. Photios Foundation Board of Trustees. The officers of the foundation are: Archbishop Demetrios, chairman; Bishop Alexios of Atlanta; president; Harry Cavalaris of Charlotte, N.C., vice president; Maria Carantzas of Jacksonville, Fla., treasurer; and Anthony Megas of Jacksonville, secretary. Diocesan representatives are: Archdiocese District, Andre Gregory and Aspacia Melis; Chicago Diocese, Fr Anargyros Stavropoulos and Joanne Stavrakas; San Francisco Diocese, Paul Sogotis; Pittsburgh Diocese, Fr. George Pappas and Angelo Koukoulis; Boston Diocese, Fr. Paul Pantelis and John Grossmanides; Denver Diocese, Fr. Constantine Pavlakos and Harry Plomarity; Atlanta Diocese, Peter Carantza, Cina Daskalakis, George Parandes, Dr. Steve Poulos, and Dr. Manuel Tissura; Detroit Diocese, Fr. Nicholas Pathenos and George Reganis; and, New Jersey Diocese, Christopher D’Anna and Christopher Skenteris. The ex-officio trustees are Bishop Dimitrios of Xanthos, Archdiocese coor-

dinator; Dr. Anthony Limberakis, Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate-Order of St. Andrew; Georgia Skeadas, National Ladies Philoptochos Society; Andrew Athens, United Hellenic American Congress (UHAC); Dr. James Dimitriou, American Hellenic Educational Progressive Association (AHEPA). Ex-officio trustees: from Holy Trinity Church in St. Augustine, Fr. Nikitas Theodosion and Mike Gaetanos; from St. Demetrios Church in Daytona Beach, Fr. Nicholas Manousakis and George Pappas; and from St. John the Divine Church in Jacksonville, Fr. Graff and Nicholas Furris. Emeritus board members include: Chairman Emeritus Archbishop Iakovos, President Emeritus Bishop John of Amorion, Peter Bouras of Florida, Eula Carlos of Georgia, Dr. George Croffead of South Carolina, Charles Masterpolis of Georgia, Ted Pappas of Florida, and honorary member Ernest Villas of Massachusetts. Trustees will hold their annual meeting in St. Augustine on Feb. 1-2. Fr. Graff said, “We serve to the glory of God, in faithfulness to our Holy Orthodox Church, and in total fidelity to our beloved St. Photios Shrine, our Archdiocese, and our Archbishop.”

CLERGY U P D A T E Ordination to the Diaconate: Andrew N. Tsikitas, by Metropolitan Maximos at Holy Cross Church, Pittsburgh, Pa. 05/25/02 Philippe Mousis, by Metropolitan Methodios, at Taxiarchai Church, Watertown, Mass. 09/30/02 Ryan Gzikowski, by Metropolitan Maximos, at Holy Cross Church, Pittsburgh, Pa. 10/12/02 Ordination to the Priesthood: Dn. Nicholas Georgiou, by Metropolitan Iakovos, at Holy Apostles Church, Westchester, Ill. 08/18/02 Dn. Alexander Chetsas, by Metropolitan Anthony, at St. Sophia Cathedral – Los Angeles 09/01/02 Assignments: Rev. Deacon Alexander Chetsas to

St. Sophia Cathedral, Los Angeles (assistant) 08/01/02 Rev. Economos George Bessinas to St. John the Baptist Church, Des Plaines, Ill. (assistant) 11/01/02 Rev. Economos George Daskalakis, to Annunciation Cathedral, Boston 11/15/02 Rev. Presbyter Michael T. Stearns, to St. Demetrios Church, Fort Worth, Texas 11/16/02 Rev. Presbyter Nicholas Georgiou, to Holy Apostles Church, Westchester, Ill. 11/17/02 Returned to layman status: V. Rev. Archimandrite Gregory Constantios 07/01/02 Suspensions: Rev. Michael C. Poplos 05/01/02





S C H O L A R S H I P S Applications for Peter Agris Scholarship AHEPA Establishes Scholarship for Seminarians BOSTON — The Alpha Omega Council, comprised of leading businesspersons of Hellenic ancestry, will honor its late founder by presenting the Eleventh Annual Peter Agris Memorial Scholarships to several young Greek Americans pursuing studies in the fields of journalism or communications. The scholarships are given in honor of Peter Agris, founder and publisher of The Hellenic Chronicle, for 50 years the premier Greek American national English-language weekly newspaper in this country. Mr. Agris was also an Archon of the Greek Orthodox Church and a trustee of Hellenic College/Holy Cross School of Theology. Criteria for candidates include: Greek American heritage; current full-time enrollment as a journalism or communications major at the graduate or undergraduate level in an accredited college or university in the United States; active participation in school, community, church organizations; a minimum of a 3.0 GPA and demonstrated financial need. The $5,000 non-renewable scholarships will be presented at the Alpha Omega Council’s annual Lifetime Achievement Award Dinner in May 2003, during which time a noted Greek American will be honored for his or her contributions to Orthodoxy and Hellenism. In September 1950, at the age of 24, Peter Agris founded The Hellenic Chronicle, an English-language weekly newspaper targeting the Greek American community. The newspaper soon gathered a national following, making it the largest Greek American national weekly newspaper. It was filled with stories about personal achievements within the community, charitable causes, religious issues, social news, as well as current events in Greek politics

and in U.S. policy. It also followed the organizations that Peter Agris took pride in, like Ahepa and the Alpha Omega Council, which he founded in 1976. Agris, who died in 1989, had high standards as an individual and as a journalist. At The Chronicle’s 10th anniversary, Archbishop Iakovos called upon the newspaper to guide the steps of future generations. And it did, for a half century, the last decade published by members of his family seeking to carry on those high standards. On Sept. 20, 2000, the 50th anniversary of the newspaper, The Hellenic Chronicle published its final edition. With the changing times came changes in the lives of Agris family members. However, with this scholarship, the Alpha Omega Council and the Agris family seek to continue to honor the great legacy Peter Agris has left to the Greek American community and to Orthodoxy in America and to support young aspiring journalists of Hellenic ancestry. The Alpha Omega Council’s mission is to promote patriotism in the U.S.; cultivate the ideals of Hellenism; maintain positive Greek-American relations; unite Americans of Greek descent in fellowship and philanthropy; recognize the achievements of those who excel in their field; and to aid charitable and educational activities. In recent years, the Alpha Omega Council has contributed more than a half million dollars to various charitable organizations. Eligible candidates may request an application by accessing the Alpha Omega Council’swebsiteat www.alphaomega or by writing to: The Peter Agris Memorial Scholarships Committee, c/o Nancy Agris Savage, 9 Nonesuch Drive, Natick, MA 01760. Applications and the required essay must be returned no later than March 31, 2003.

Hellenic Times to Award over $100,000 NEW YORK: The Hellenic Times Scholarship Fund will award more than $100,000 in scholarships to Greek American students across the country for the academic year 2003-2004. The HTSF was instituted in 1990, and since then over $750,000 has been distributed to college and graduate school students. In May 2002, the HTSF awarded 37 scholarships and each year the Fund receives hundreds of applications representing the 50 states, Canada and Greece.

The scholarships will be awarded at the 12th annual Scholarship Gala on May 9, 2003 at the New York Hilton. Scholarship applications must be submitted by February 15th, 2003. Applications are available on our website at: For more information, to volunteer or for a scholarship application, visit theWebsite, call (212) 986-6881 or write to: Hellenic Times Scholarship Fund, Attn. Nick Katsoris, 823 Eleventh Avenue, New York, N.Y. 10019.


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WASHINGTON—Supreme President Dr. James F. Dimitriou met with His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios on Oct. 18 to discuss the supreme president’s goals for expanding on the fine working relationship between AHEPA and the Archdiocese, especially in new areas such as education. “It’s a very important year for Hellenism, for Orthodoxy, and for AHEPA,” Dr. Dimitriou said. “It’s crucial for us to work together on common concerns and to speak with one voice. He continued, “AHEPA has a proud history of support and cooperation with the Archdiocese, including contributions to the building of St. Basil Academy, to local parishes, and to educational programs. In new areas where AHEPA and the Archdiocese can work together, namely education, Dr. Dimitriou announced that AHEPA would offer a new scholarship to be given annually in the name of Archbishop Demetrios for seminarians attending Holy Cross School of Theology. “This initiative will begin on AHEPA Day, in the spring of 2003, and we will require chapters throughout the domain to participate,” the supreme president said. “His Eminence welcomed this effort and it will be a project we will work on together with the Archdiocese.” According to the supreme president, His Eminence received most favorably an invitation to attend the 2003 AHEPA Su-

preme Convention in Athens and to participate on a post-convention pilgrimage to the Ecumenical Patriarchate. “We were most pleased to invite His Eminence to a historic convention this July when AHEPA returns to Greece after 32 years,” he said. The Supreme Convention is scheduled for July 19-27 in Athens and the post-convention pilgrimage to the Ecumenical Patriarchate departs from Piraeus on July 28 and returns Aug. 1, making historical and religiously significant stops along the way. The pressing need for the government of Israel to recognize the Patriarch of Jerusalem, the treatment of Arab Orthodox communities in the Holy Land, and the call for the reopening of the Theological School of Halki were identified as key areas where AHEPA and the Archdiocese can work together. In the past year, AHEPA introduced a congressional resolution in the U.S. House of Representatives calling for the reopening of the theological school and also outreached to the Jewish-American community on the issue of recognition for the Patriarch of Jerusalem, Irineos I. “We will readdress our efforts in these two areas and push harder to create awareness of these important issues to key audiences until they are properly resolved,” said Dr. Dimitriou. “They have gone on too long.”

Panmessenian Foundation Awards Reception ROSEMONT, Ill. — The Panmessenian Scholarship Foundation presented two young students of Messenian descent who have distinguished themselves with high scholastic achievements with the Foundation scholarships on Oct. 30. The winners were Constandina Demetra Giannakopoulos from Norridge, Ill., daughter of Kathy and Dimitrios Giannakopoulos and Jennifer Marie Sambatakos from Boston, daughter of Marylou and John Sambatakos. Each winner received $4,000 and a certificate that confirmed the Award. The selection was made by the Foundation’s Academic Committee, chaired by Dr. George Alexopoulos, who enforced the criteria established by the Foundation. “In a age of uncertainty, one thing is certain: the timeless values of Hellenism can help lead the world back from the brink of darkness. And we all remember how these values are best transmitted: from the armament of education… one mind at a time,”

said Chris Tomaras, Foundation board chairman, and added: “I express my sincere thanks to all those who have contributed both monetarily and morally to this effort.” The Foundation was established in 1999 by Chris Tomaras together with a number of supporters with the purpose to encourage young Greek Americans to distinguish themselves though education. The Foundation’s objective is to offer five to 10 scholarships annually $5,000 each, while it continues to build a self-sustained fund that later will generate larger amounts for worthy recipients. The event was by personal invitation and was held in an elegant setting at the Rosewood Restaurant & Banquets in Rosemont. Guests included Metropolitan Iakovos of Krinis; Gabriel Koptsidis, consul general of Greece in Chicago and Mrs. Koptsidis; Maria Pappas, Cook County treasurer; Stavroula Skoura Theriou, coordinator of education in Chicago, and other Chicago Greek American community members.





RELIGIOUS EDUCATION The Power of Storytelling Storytelling is the instructional method often referred to as “oblique narrative” employed by numerous biblical personalities, including Jesus. by Fr. Frank Marangos

An examination of this insightful practice may help contemporary religious educators, parents and pastors better understand the reason for the growing and very popular activity in many Greek Orthodox parishes, namely, the “children’s homily.” While the exact liturgical time of delivery may differ, most clergymen are convinced that this catechetical tool provides them an invaluable opportunity to reach the hearts and minds of the children placed under their pastoral care. When encouraged to describe the benefits of the children’s homily clergymen are quick to include the opportunity to reach the parents as well as their children to whom the lessons are primarily directed. If we are to continue this liturgically based pedagogic yet very pastoral practice it would be prudent for its practitioners to first critically reflect upon the nature of its undeniable success.

The Prophet Nathan In the 12th chapter of II Samuel the prophet Nathan is faced with an extremely delicate problem. God has commissioned him with the uncomfortable task of confronting King David with sinful conduct. Specifically, Nathan must charge David with the murder of Uriah and for his subsequent marriage to Uriah’s widowed wife, Bathsheba. The prophet accomplishes his mission through the help of oblique narrative, a pastoral process that involves storytelling or metaphorical narration. At first, the story that Nathan presents to David has apparently no connection with the King’s unlawful acts of murder and indiscretion. It is an innocuous tale concerning an indignant farmer’s milkproducing sheep, which wandered from home and was subsequently claimed by a wealthy landowner. The story is apparently safe and distant. David therefore listens to the narrative and responds freely without the threat of personal ramifications. In fact, he becomes so engaged with the story’s blatant case of economic oppression and the lack of justice that “David’s anger was greatly kindled” against the landowner in the story (II Samuel 12:5). As a result, David interrupts Nathan and strongly insists that “the man that hath done this is worthy to die” and that “he shall restore the lamb fourfold, because he did this thing, and because he had no pity” (II Samuel 12:6). Ironically, the distance afforded by Nathan’s narrative occasions the deeper participation of the listener. Without realizing what is happening, David is put in a position of overhearing the truth, as if “for someone else.” Suddenly, however, he discovers that he has walked into the story’s trap. Overwhelmed he realizes the painful truth that the story was not about distant economic oppression. The tale was not about foreign images of injustice but about deep and very personal sin! The story was about him!

The Use of Liturgical Narrative Research in instructional strategies has demonstrated the instructional competence of hearing a narrative in the subjective mood, as if, “for someone else.” Like David, parents and other adults who over-hear the sermon directed by the priest to the children gathered in the front rows during the Sunday Liturgy, may suddenly find themselves unconsciously trans-

ferring its morals and spiritual meaning to themselves. When our defenses are down, a substitution occurs in the minds of the adults. Although we did not expect to be personally involved, the linguistic signs, symbols and metaphors found in stories directed to children begin to have meaning for us. What begins as a dispassionate activity of distant listening gradually emerges as something personally addressed. Invariably, adults will often spiritually benefit far more from the Sunday morning children sermon, than by the homily expressly directed at them. While not directly addressed, its message can curiously become more meaningful for them. Consequently, the entire liturgical setting invites the adult congregation to hear the narrative as one of the children might hear it. Perhaps this is what our Lord was referring to when he insisted that we must become “as little children” if we desire to enter the Kingdom of heaven (Mt 18:3)!

The Liturgical Context Research in education has provided quantifiable data that demonstrates the power such indirect communication. They insist that what is learned obliquely is often what is learned best! Such is the process within Orthodox liturgical experience. Gathered together, the saints and martyrs of the Church triumphant narrative their collective stories to the faithful of the contemporary Church militant. As if over-hearing a divine conversation between Christ and His children, the entire Church is invited to conceive a world anew. This is done through the wordless yet inexhaustible vocabulary of iconography which together with the juxtaposition of intersecting hymnology, architecture rubric and liturgical proclamation create occasions for unconscious learning. Unable to contain an adequacy of meaning in a single image or word, the narratives of the Church, like a story directed towards children, invite us to submit to yield ourselves to the praxis of holiness that they suggest. Like the Sunday morning children’s sermon a similar phenomenon can occur at weddings and funerals. While directing their comments to the newlyweds or to the grieving family, clergymen indicate that it is often those who are indirectly addressed that are often most moved to emotional expressions. Although the central participants of the liturgical context may remember very little if anything about their wedding or about their loved one’s funeral, the people not directly addressed are frequently the individuals who renewed vows, continued the grief process or committed themselves towards deeper faith. In the final analysis, divine storytelling requires that the catechist remain humble and modest. Aware of the inadequacy of language to relate the incomprehensibility of God, the pastor, parent and/or teacher uses stories that make no ultimate claims but rather offer various angles of celestial vision. Like the prophet Nathan, the dedicated parish clergy who diligently prepare two Sunday homilies are indeed contemporary storytellers that give witness to our inability to exhaust our understanding of things divines. As such, the Church’s rich tapestry of prophetic narratives is a valuable inheritance that invites us to engage the inexhaustible profusion of God’s Truth. The Rev. Dr. Frank Marangos is director of the Archdiocese Department of Religious Education.


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Under Attack Remember when the Christmas season in American public schools was treated as a very joyful and holy time of the year? Traditional Christmas concerts where choruses of happy children would sing such classic carols as “Silent Night,” “Joy to the World,” “Hark the Herald Angels Sing,” “It Came Upon a Midnight Clear,” and “The Little Drummer Boy” took place in auditoriums filled with proud parents and friends. Remember when the big three TV networks would air Christmas specials featuring a variety of stars and devoted part of the program to the season’s spiritual theme? Remember when the words “Merry Christmas” were the usual response to friends and others we encountered during the holiday season? Remember when Nativity scenes were commonplace, not only in people’s yards but also in public areas such as in front of City Hall or on the village square? But for the past 40 years or more, this more spiritual aspect of American culture and way of life has become eroded to such an extent that we seem to have come almost full circle to the era of Nero’s Rome when Christian’s practiced their faith at their own peril. Now, “holidays” of other faiths that occur at the same time have been elevated to equal status with Christmas. The songs you will most likely hear at school assemblies are probably “Deck the Halls,” “I’m Dreaming of a White Christmas,” “Jingle Bells,” or “Frosty the Snowman.” The greeting you’ll most likely to hear on the street, schools and stores is “Happy Holidays.” This “de-Christianization” of Christmas is only part of the greater assault on Christianity in general taking place over a very long time. Consider a few examples occurring in early December. • The New York City Board of Education ruled that, while Nativity scenes may not be displayed at city schools, menorahs and the Islamic star and crescent moon symbols can. • The TV Guide Channel has been airing a promotional ad for an upcoming Worldwide Wrestling Entertainment pay-per-view event, “Armageddon,” that shows “Jesus” gambling with the devil in a sports bar. (We won’t mention the scandalous dialogue here). One national civil rights and advocacy group criticized the ad as “tasteless and insensitive” and called on the TV Guide Channel to withdraw it and apologize to viewers. Ironically, the organization that lodged the protest is the Washington-based Council on American-Islamic Relations. (Muslims revere Jesus as a great prophet). The group also called on Christian leaders to join in the protest. • Following the complaint of one parent, a middle school principal in tiny Rushville, Ohio, about 45 miles southeast of Columbus, agreed to stop allowing representatives of Gideons International from entering the school to distribute free copies of the New Testament. Since 1899, The Gideons, an organization of Christian business and professional men has distributed Bibles in hotels, motels, prisons, hospitals and colleges. The principal also said he will stop the voluntary recital of the Lord’s Prayer after the Pledge of Allegiance, substituting it with a moment of silence. Meanwhile, the Associated Press reported on Dec. 11 that the Ohio State School Board unanimously approved standards that more strongly advocate the teaching of evolution, while not requiring the teaching of the alternate “intelligent design” theory (i.e. creation). • After lengthy debate, the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto has switched from marking calendar years on its exhibits with A.D. (in the year of our Lord) and B.C. (before Christ), to the more “modern and palatable” system of B.C.E. (before the common era) and C.E. (common era). A museum spokesman told a local newspaper the intent of the change was “to be more inclusive. A lot of people accept the reality of Jesus as a historical figure, but don’t accept him as Christ. . . ‘Before Christ is really quite ethnocentric of European Christians. And to use “the year of our Lord” is also quite insensitive to huge populations in Toronto who have other lords.” Thus, we have arrived at a stage in history where the Christian underpinnings of Western society are being constantly diluted and undermined. Examples such as these have become all too common in this country and others. Only through the Church, which for 2,000 years has stood as a beacon offering the Light of Christ and has handed down the Orthodox faith unchanged, can we find refuge from these outright attacks on our religion. As we gather during this Advent season and watch the children in our own parish Christmas pageants portraying Mary and Joseph, the shepherds, angels and wise men, their presentation will serve to remind us that “Jesus is the reason for the Season,” and that “God gave His only begotten Son” not only for us who gather to worship Him, but also for those who seek to undermine His Church and our faith in Him. Have a Blessed and Holy Christmas.

 ‘Greek Wedding’  Editor, My opinion of the movie (My Big Fat Greek Wedding) is the producers took the Holy Sacrament of Baptism, as instituted by Christ and the anointing oil applied as part of this holy ceremony and turned it into a salacious and sacrilegious, ugly

scene. This froze my heart and rendered me incapable of enjoying the remainder of an otherwise good movie. Also, I’m concerned about the impression this may have made on people of other Christian denominations about our Church. Ero Diamantos Merritt Island, Fla.


Archpastoral Reflections by His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios of America This month of December we reflect upon tremendous events and opportunities of offering. First and foremost, upon the Nativity of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, we praise God for His wondrous offering to us of His only-begotten Son. We recall the Magi who offered gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh, to the infant Jesus. Appropriately, we too mark the season in this same spirit with the opportunity of unconditionally offering gifts to one another—family members, friends, and especially the needy among us whom we are especially called to remember by acts of charity and love, thinking the words of our Lord, “By this, everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another” (Jn. 13: 35). In the days that follow the abundant offerings of the Christmas season, we prepare ourselves for the commemoration of yet another offering which we approach by the grace and mercy of Almighty God: the beginning of a new year of salvation, 2003. We have been called to reflect upon another, very specific dimension of offering, Offering our Orthodox Faith to Contemporary America, the theme of our most recent Clergy-Laity Congress convened in Los Angeles this past summer. As we embark upon this next year we grow in our awareness of the vital role of this offering, and we are challenged everyday to reexamine this pivotal concept knowing that our response is vital to our identity as Orthodox Christians and the flourishing of our faith in this land. We offer our Orthodox faith to contemporary America through selfless acts of charity and philanthropy towards needy persons from all walks of life, through renewed commitments to serving both the religious educational needs within our parishes and also the general educational needs within our communities at large. By better understanding and addressing the specific needs of our married couples and their families of interfaith backgrounds, we are poised to offer our Orthodox faith to contemporary America in a most unprecedented way. Finally, we must ensure that our youth seek out contact with other Orthodox Christians, especially when they leave home to attend college, and that we offer our refreshing witness to Christians of other religious denominations and also to people of non-Christian faiths who, together with us, comprise contemporary America in all its God-given beauty and fullness. These are but a few ideas which merit further reflection within the framework of offering and in the season of Christmas and the New Year now at hand. Through the continued leadership of the Archdiocese, its manifold institutions, and the dioceses of our Greek Orthodox Church in America, clear directions are being specified by which we may offer our precious, ancient, and dynamic Orthodox faith to contemporary America. It is ultimately within the parish where this offering is most crucial and where this offering demands the collaborative work of both the clergy and laity at the local level. To this end, the Archdiocese remains steadily committed to improving its communicative abilities with each parish throughout the nation through empowering the parishes with necessary resources, especially in the area of information technologies. I pray that the infinite love of Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior be with each of you during this special season of joy and offering. Above all, may we be mindful of the saving work of His Apostles, who offered this same Orthodox Christian faith to their contemporary communities millennia ago, trusting with unwavering conviction that “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, and today, and forever” (Hb. 13:8). May His perfect grace keep you always and may He grant all who live in contemporary America and throughout the world everlasting peace and life.

 World Peace 

 Return bells

Editor, I would like to answer Fran Glaros’ letter in the October Observer. First of all, we believers do not run the world. It is run by the nations of this world, by Satan and by God. According to the Bible, Satan is the god of this world and deceives all who are lost. The fact that modern man does not believe the devil exists works to Satan’s benefit. Romans 12:17 does not apply to the nations of the world but to believers in Jesus Christ. If the United States had stayed out of World War II it is quite possible Hitler and Japan could have won. Jesus said there will be wars and rumors of wars until the end of time. Only when He returns will there be peace worldwide. When every one becomes a Christian there will be peace and not before then. Pete Mamakos Wheeling, W.Va.

Editor. I am the president of the Orthodox Christian fellowship at Harvard University. Recently, at Harvard there has arisen an issue that is related to the Orthodox Church and needs media attention. One of the residential houses here at Harvard, Lowell House, has a large tower. In the tower is a set of beautiful Russian bells, which were taken from a Russian Orthodox monastery during Soviet times. The monastery, named after St. Danilov, desires to have the missing bells back from Harvard from the celebration of the 700th anniversary of St. Danilov. Harvard, though, is unwilling to given them back. This situation is no different than the stealing of the Codex Sinaicus from the Monastery of St. Catherine on Mount Sinai. Nicholas Lamb Cambridge, Mass.




viewpoint Putting Christ Back Into ‘Christ’mas After all, whose birthday is it anyway?


ou mean it’s not X-mas or gift-mas or “rush-around-and-go-crazy-mas?� Wow, you could have fooled me! Every year I start the Christmas countdown with the best intentions, and each year I find it more and more difficult to keep my focus on the reason for the season? Christ. by Doria Saros

As a 40-something youth minister and stepmother of three, I am especially concerned about my own behavior during the Christmas season. According to Group magazine parents are the unequivocal single most important influence on their child’s spiritual growth. If I struggle to keep my focus on Christ during the madness of the shopping season, what am I demonstrating to my own children? The world is a very seductive place in which commercial marketing is frequently challenging our God-given spiritual discernment. How many times have we found ourselves so consumed by the material aspect of gift giving that we completely lose focus of the Nativity and our greatest gift, the newborn Jesus? We need to change our worldly thinking to a more Christian attitude of gratitude. For example in this country, it is traditional to celebrate birthdays by showering the birthday boy or girl with accolades and gifts. So why don’t we apply that same tradition for our Lord and Savior? After all, whose birthday is it anyway? So, what are we going to give Jesus for His birthday this year?

 “OXI� program praise Editor, Beneficial events should be recognized and heralded. One such celebration was the remembrance of OXI Day (October 28, 1940) by the students of St. Nicholas Greek School in Baltimore under the excellent direction of Helen Nopolis, principal, and her capable staff. An emotionfilled audience listened as the students recited memorable patriotic poems and quotations and proudly sang and danced. Commemorating such historic events and honoring the heroes and freedom fighters of our past, who preserved our faith and democratic principles, gives each of us a better understanding of our roots and, therefore, defines who we are. I am deeply grateful that the children of St. Nicholas are receiving the guidance to appreciate, love and respect their rich heritage and, in turn, will become better American citizens. Eve Lallas Kingsville, Md.

 Troubling Letter  Editor, I just received the November 2002 issue of the Orthodox Observer. However, I was troubled by Frank Johnson’s letter to the editor. You’d have to be crazy to think that the world would be a better place if everyone engaged in the negative activities he described. However, I think that it is naive to think that the problems would be solved if everybody asked themselves that question “What if everybody did it?� before engaging in those activities or adopted any attitude.

I’m not saying that we should stop exchanging gifts. What I am suggesting is that we remember Jesus above all on our Christmas lists. Obviously, the gifts we give to Christ deserve greater effort than the gifts we give to one another. Therefore our “shopping� for Jesus will be more creative than in the usual sense. But here is a tremendous opportunity for us to work with our children in expressing our love for God with a truly giving heart. Here are some gift suggestions for our Lord and Savior: How about giving a donation to a local food-shelf in someone’s name for Christmas (adult friends love this)? How about taking the money that we save on groceries during our fasting and donating it to a food-shelf? How about making homemade cards or cookies for someone who is sick or shutin? How about inviting someone into our home for the holiday meal who doesn’t have family nearby? How about giving an elderly member of the community a ride to and from church for Christmas services? How about dedicating more of our prayers to being thankful? How about having the courage to declare “Merry Christmas� or “Christ Is Born,� instead of the more politically correct “Happy Holidays.� These are just a few ways to give the gift of glory to Jesus Christ. By keeping our perspective on who Christmas is all about we help put the holiness back in holiday. God willing with each act of kindness we will help spread the news to our children and to our community, “Christ Is Born! Glorify Him!� Doria Saros is the youth director at St. Mary’s Church in Minneapolis, Minn.

I am specifically referring to his reference to suicide. A suicidal person is most likely suffering from depression and is not thinking clearly. They probably believe that the world and the church would be better off without them. Frank Johnson’s comments could add fuel to a suicidal person’s thinking that they were worthless or hopelessly sinful and unworthy to live. Disparity in the treatment and insurance coverage for mental illness is a societal sin. Thinking that an ill person can just snap out of it or rationally stop the behavior is backward and ignorant. I hope that is not the official belief of the Orthodox Church. I don’t believe that it is since some of Christ’s greatest ministry on earth was to heal the sick and have compassion on the sinners and downtrodden. Connie Stavropoulos Chicago


 Memorable article  Editor, I am an 80-year-old Greek boy, born in Haverhill Oct. 31, 1933. Your Parish Profile on Haverhill brought back many memories. My parents both worked all their lives in the “shoe shops.� I worked in Western Electric before entering the Army. Both my grandparents, Fraggakis, had settled in Haverhill in the 1890s. One comment: Mrs. Alexopoulos was not Greek. Her maiden name was Alice Hill Northstreet. At age 48, she had married Peter Alexopoulos, age 20! She taught English in the Greek school and she was a great lady and friend of the Greek community. Thank you for this memorable article! Anastasios Alek Malvretis Lansing, Mich.




Family Care



How Do You Teach a Youngster to Believe in God? I remember a few years ago at St. Basil Academy the arrival of two siblings, their ages were 11 and 13. The intake/ interview process is quite thorough so the youngsters were prepared for their new surroundings as best as possible. by Fr. Constantine L. Sitaras

They appeared happy to be in a safe, secure environment, knowing they would have food to eat at every mealtime plus snacks. It appeared that they were adjusting very well. Their life circumstances had brought them to this Greek Orthodox institution. Parents who were unable to take care of them because of their own ills—emotional, chemical, and material. The children knew why they were at St. Basil and were okay with it. Soon certain food intolerances disappeared and were replaced with food preferences; academics improved as remedial help was

obtained. In the overall, the children seemed to be adjusting well. We have a brief weekday evening Vespers service the children attend. The actual service encourages students’ participation is followed by a didactic sermon. The entire religious experience takes half an hour or less. I recall how one residential life counselor came to me with a serious and distressing issue. He walked down the hill from our chapel with the two siblings following an evening service and, in the course of their conversation, each child preceded to tell him that they did not believe in God. He was very upset by this and had to tell me immediately. How could they not believe in God? How could they be in this beautiful place, receiving such good care by caring people, all because of the love of their Church and they not believe in God? When I did not respond by becoming

upset or even angry I could see that he was even more upset and more confused. Why should these youngsters believe in God? God who is Love, caring, kind, compassionate, and forgiving. Why should they believe in God or better yet, how could they believe in God when God had not cured their parents, healed their family, or taken care of them. But God brought them to St. Basil — yes — God took them away from their parents whom they love in spite of all of their ills and shortcomings. I proceeded to explain the fact the children felt secure and safe enough to open their hearts and share their feelings was a blessing and that in time, by the power and love and grace of the Holy Spirit if it be His will, they would come to know God. It was soon after that, that the children had shared their disbelief with me. In a reassuring and caring way, I tried to explain that God loves them whether

they can believe it or not. Our staff has been trained and knows that we must be consistent in our ways, fair and just in our discipline; that God works through us and the children will see Him in our actions— the old adage: “actions speak louder than words” holds true. We must preach and teach in our behavior and in the raising of our children. There are no “quick fixes” but with consistent, caring and careful behavior, children will learn to trust adults. When that happens, trust in God is not far behind. About a year ago, the older child brought me a drawing she had done on a snow day while home from school. It was the Panaghia with Jesus, the Mother of God with the baby Jesus, it was her rendering of the very familiar icon. The Theotokos she drew had tears. Although alarmed, in a calm way, I asked the youngster to explain why the Virgin Mary had tears. “Why? Because she is so happy to have her baby Jesus.” Silly me. Why didn’t I know that right off. About two weeks ago, the younger child gave me a gift. He had been “doing stuff” with playdough while with his counselor. His small creations were a beautiful cow, (he loves animals) a baseball cap, Yankees, of course, and a crucifix. He couldn’t wait to give them to me. Oh, he is also a model altar boy. Do these children believe in God? They are growing to a point where they can experience and feel God’s Love. They feel safe and cared for and can share their beliefs in God. Their faith is growing and with His guidance they will be able to even speak of their understanding and knowledge of Him who is the salvation of the world. How do you teach a youngster to believe in God? 1. Be patient, be caring, be loving, be just. 2. Set limits with fairness and in a just manner. 3. Remember, your faith in God and love of Him will permeate your being. Children will know and see and model your behavior. 4. Remember, - Preach and teach not by your words alone but by your actions. Your lifestyle is a witness to God’s Love and life in you. Young people will model this reality. Fr. Sitaras is executive director of St. Basil Academy, a home for Orthodox children in need for more than 55 years.

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Archbishop Visits Richmond Virginia Cathedral

2 1 1) HIS EMINENCE with Fr. Nicholas Bacalis, Fr. John Manuel and the presbyteres. 2) A YOUTH group performs traditional dances. 3) ARCHBISHOP DEMETRIOS tours the Greek and Byzantine galleries of the Richmond Museum.

young adults from the parish as readers. After the Liturgy, a luncheon took place honoring the Archbishop. More than 300 persons attended. In his remarks, His Eminence was quick to praise the young adults’ dedication to the community. They served the meal and performed traditional Greek dances in a festive ceremony marking the visit of their national religious leader and archpastor.


RICHMOND,Va.– Greeted at the airport by 20 young children, their parents, and clergy from the Cathedral of Sts. Constantine and Helen, Archbishop Demetrios began a pastoral visit in continued service to the needs of his flock the weekend of Nov. 30-Dec. 1. The Archbishop’s visit began with a guided tour of the Greek and Byzantine galleries of the Richmond Museum of Fine Arts. Later in the afternoon, he attended a luncheon with the leadership of the parish and proceeded to the Cathedral for an open discussion with parish youth. During this discussion, the Archbishop challenged the youth to suggest concrete ways they could offer their Orthodox faith to contemporary America, noting their keen sense of awareness and enthusiasm concerning this important Church issue. In recent months, he has consistently sought insight from faithful throughout the country on this crucial topic, especially after the 36th Biennial Clergy-Laity Congress in Los Angeles, which had the theme: “Offering our Orthodox Faith to Contemporary America.” Following the discussion, the Archbishop celebrated the Great Vespers with several local area clergy. The next morning, Dec. 1, His Eminence celebrated the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy, which was highlighted by several noteworthy occasions: the ordination of Deacon John Manuel to the Holy Priesthood, the elevation of Fr. Nicholas Bacalis, proistamenos, to the rank of Protopresbyter, and the tonsuring of eight

The Alpha Omega Council will honor its late founder by presenting the Eleventh Annual

Peter Agris Memorial Scholarships $5,000 non-renewable scholarships at their annual awards dinner

✍ REQUISITES • Greek American heritage • Currently a journalism/communications major at the undergraduate or graduate level • Active in school/community/church groups • 3.0 GPA • Full-time student • Financial need

✍ For an application, go online to: or write to: The Peter Agris Memorial Scholarships, c/o Nancy Agris Savage, 9 Nonesuch Drive, Natick, MA 01760

Applications must be completed and returned by March 31, 2003.





×ñéóôïõãåííéÜôéêåò Åõ÷Ýò Óôüí Ðáíáãéþôáôï Ïéêïõìåíéêü ìáò ÐáôñéÜñ÷ç ê.ê. Âáñèïëïìáßï, óôüí Óåâáóìéþôáôï Áñ÷éåðßóêïðü ìáò ê.ê. ÄçìÞôñéï, óôïí óåâáóôü ìáò êëÞñï, óôïýò åêðáéäåõôéêïýò ìáò, óå üëç ôçí ÏìïãÝíåéá, êáé óå ïëüêëçñï ôïí ×ñéóôéáíéêü Êüóìï. ×ñéóôïýãåííá! ×áñïýìåíá ÷ôõðÜåé ç êáìðÜíá, ×ñéóôïýãåííá! ÊñÜæåé ç ìÜíá óôï ðáéäß, ×ñéóôïýãåííá! Êáé ôï ðáéäß óôç ìÜíá, Êé ï êüóìïò üëïò ôñáãïõäåß. Ç ôáðåéíÞ öÜôíç ìáò ðñïóêáëåß: Íá ãßíïõìå ðÜëé ðáéäéÜ. Ãéá ãáëÞíç óôç øõ÷Þ ìáò. Ãéá åéñÞíç ó’ üëï ôïí êüóìï.

ÊáëÜ ×ñéóôïýãåííá! ×áñïýìåíåò ÃéïñôÝò Ïéêïãåíåéáêþò ÓôÝöáíïò ÔóåñðÝëçò ¢ñ÷ùí Äéêáéïöýëáî Leadership 100




ÅÐÉÔÉÌÏÓ ÄÉÄÁÊÔÙÑ ÔÏÕ Á.Ð.È. ÁÍÁÃÏÑÅÕÈÇÊÅ Ï ÁÑ×ÉÅÐÉÓÊÏÐÏÓ ÄÇÌÇÔÑÉÏÓ ÈÅÓÓÁËÏÍÉÊÇ.– «Ãéá ôçí áäéÜëåéðôç ðñïóöïñÜ ôïõ óôçí Åêêëçóßá êáé ôçí åîáßñåôç óõìâïëÞ ôïõ óôçí ÅðéóôÞìç ôçò Èåïëïãßáò» ôéìÞèçêå ï Óåâáóìéþôáôïò Áñ÷éåðßóêïðïò ÁìåñéêÞò êýñéïò ÄçìÞôñéïò áðü ôïí êáèçãçôÞ ê. Ìé÷Üëç Ðáðáäüðïõëï, ðñýôáíç ôïõ Áñéóôïôåëåßïõ Ðáíåðéóôçìßïõ Èåóóáëïíßêçò, ôïõ ìåãáëõôÝñïõ óôçí ÍÁ Åõñþðç, ìå 44 ôìÞìáôá êáé 70.000 äéäÜóêïíôåò, öïéôçôÝò êáé åñãáæïìÝíïõò, ôçí Ôñßôç 19 Íïåìâñßïõ 2002, óôá ðëáßóéá ôçò äçìüóéáò áíáãüñåõóçò ôïõ ê. Äçìçôñßïõ óå Åðßôéìï ÄéäÜêôïñá ôïõ ÔìÞìáôïò Èåïëïãßáò ôïõ éäßïõ Ðáíåðéóôçìßïõ. Óôçí êáôÜìåóôç áßèïõóá ôåëåôþí ôïõ ÁÐÈ, åíþðéïí ôïõ ÐñõôÜíåùò êáé ôùí äýï ÁíôéðñõôÜíåùí, ï ðñüåäñïò ôïõ ÔìÞìáôïò Èåïëïãßáò êáè. ê. ÌéëôéÜäçò Êùíóôáíôßíïõ êÞñõîå ôç äçìüóéá óõíåäñßáóç ôïõ ôìÞìáôïò, ìå ìïíáäéêü èÝìá ôçí áðïíïìÞ Äéäáêôïñéêïý Äéðëþìáôïò ôéìÞò Ýíåêåí (honoris cause) ðñïò ôïí Áñ÷éåðßóêïðï ÁìåñéêÞò ê. ÄçìÞôñéï, ìßá ðñïóùðéêüôçôá ôçò Åêêëçóßáò êáé ôçò èåïëïãéêÞò Ýñåõíáò, ìå ðïëõåôÞ äñÜóç êáé äéåèíÞ áêôéíïâïëßá. Óôç óõíÝ÷åéá, óôï Þèïò êáé ôç äéåèíÞ áíáãíþñéóç ôïõ ôéìþìåíïõ, áëëÜ êáé ôçí


Ï êáè. ê. ÌéëôéÜäçò Êùíóôáíôßíïõ áðïíÝìåé ôïí ôéìçôéêü ôßôëï óôïí Áñ÷éåðßóêïðï.

Üñéóôç åðéëïãÞ ôïõ ÔìÞìáôïò, áíáöÝñèçêáí åí óõíôïìßá ï ðñýôáíçò ôïõ ÁÐÈ êáé ï êïóìÞôïñáò ôçò ÈåïëïãéêÞò Ó÷ïëÞò ôïõ ÁÐÈ êáèçãçôÞò ê. ÉùÜííçò Ôáñíáíßäçò.

Ôïí êáèéåñùìÝíï Ýðáéíï (laudatio) ôïõ ôéìùìÝíïõ éåñÜñ÷ç êáé áêáäçìáúêïý äéäáóêÜëïõ åêöþíçóå ï êáèçãçôÞò ôçò ÊáéíÞò ÄéáèÞêçò ê. ÉùÜííçò Êáñáâéäüðïõëïò, ï ïðïßïò ôüíéóå ôçí åðéóôçìïíéêÞ

ôïõ äéåéóäõôéêüôçôá, ôçí êáôáîßùóÞ ôïõ óôï ÷þñï ôçò âéâëéêÞò Ýñåõíáò, ôéò äéäáêôéêÝò ôïõ éêáíüôçôåò, áëëÜ êáé ôçí áöïóßùóÞ ôïõ óôçí éåñáôéêÞ êáé ðïéìáíôéêÞ ôïõ êëÞóç, åðéêáëïýìåíïò êáé ôç ìáñôõñßá äéáêåêñéìÝíùí ÈåóóáëïíéêÝùí óõììáèçôþí ôïõ üôé «áðü ôá ðáéäéêÜ ôïõ ÷ñüíéá Þôáí ðÜíôïôå ìå áðëüôçôá êáé öõóéêüôçôá, óå üëá üóá åðåäßùêå ðñþôïò ôùí ðñþôùí»! Áêïëïýèçóå ç áíÜãíùóç êáé ç åðßäïóç ôùí øçöéóìÜôùí áðü ôïí ðñüåäñï ôïõ ÔìÞìáôïò, ç åðÝíäõóç ìå ôá äéáêñéôéêÜ äéÜóçìá ôïõ ÁÐÈ êáé ç åðßäïóç ôéìçôéêÞò ðëáêÝôáò áðü ôïí Ðñýôáíç. Ï Áñ÷éåðßóêïðïò ê. ÄçìÞôñéïò öáíåñÜ óõãêéíçìÝíïò ãéá ôçí ôéìÞ ðïõ ôïõ Ýãéíå áðü ôï Áíþôáôï Åêðáéäåõôéêü ºäñõìá ôçò ãåíÝôåéñÜò ôïõ, åíþðéïí ôùí ÷éëßùí êáé ðëÝïí ðñïóêåêëçìÝíùí, áíáöÝñèçêå óôïõò äåóìïýò ôïõ ìå ôï ÐáíåðéóôÞìéï Èåóóáëïíßêçò áðü ôá ìáèçôéêÜ ôïõ ÷ñüíéá óôï Ðåéñáìáôéêü Ó÷ïëåßï ôïõ ÁÐÈ êáé áñãüôåñá ëüãù ôïõ áäåëöïý ôïõ êáèçãçôïý ôçò ÉáôñéêÞò Ó÷ïëÞò êáé ô. Ðñýôáíç êáé åðåóÞìáíå ôçí ïñãáíéêÞ ðëÝïí ÝíôáîÞ ôïõ óå áõôü.

 óåë. 17


×ñéóôïýãåííá 2002 Ðñoò ôïõò ÓåâáóìéùôÜôïõò êáé ÈåïöéëåóôÜôïõò Áñ÷éåñåßò, ôïõò ÅõëáâåóôÜôïõò Éåñåßò êáé Äéáêüíïõò, ôïõò Ìïíá÷ïýò êáé Ìïíá÷Ýò, ôïõò ÐñïÝäñïõò êáé ÌÝëç ôùí Êïéíïôéêþí Óõìâïõëßùí, ôá ÇìåñÞóéá êáé ÁðïãåõìáôéíÜ Ó÷ïëåßá, ôéò Öéëïðôþ÷ïõò Áäåëöüôçôåò, ôçí Íåïëáßá, ôéò Åëëçíïñèüäïîåò Ïñãáíþóåéò êáé ïëüêëçñï ôï ×ñéóôåðþíõìïí ðëÞñùìá ôç ÉåñÜò Áñ÷éåðéóêïðÞò ÁìåñéêÞò. Áäåëöïß êáé ÁäåëöÝò åí ×ñéóôþ, Óáò áðåõèýíù ôïí ÷áéñåôéóìü ìïõ åðß ôç ÷áñìïóýíù åïñôÞ ôçò ÃåííÞóåùò ôïõ Êõñßïõ ìáò êáé ÓùôÞñïò Éçóïý ×ñéóôïý, åíüò ìïíáäéêïý èáýìáôïò ôï ïðïßï óõíÝâç äýï ÷éëéåôçñßäåò ðñéí, áöÞíïíôáò ôçí áíåîßôçëç óöñáãßäá ôïõ óôï áíèñþðéíï ãÝíïò êáé ïëüêëçñç ôçí êôßóç. Äéüôé êáôÜ ôçí éåñÜ êáé åîáßóéá áõôÞ çìÝñá óôçí ÂçèëåÝì ï Èåüò óõãêáôÝâç êáé åóáñêþèç ëüãù ôçò áðÝñáíôçò áãÜðçò Ôïõ ãéá ìáò, ç ÐáñèÝíïò Ìáñßá åãÝííçóå ôïí ÓáñêùèÝíôá Ëüãï, êáé ôï äþñï ôçò óùôçñßáò ôïõ êüóìïõ áðåêáëýöèç óôçí áíèñùðüôçôá óôï ðëÞñùìá ôïõ ÷ñüíïõ. Ç ãÝííçóç ôïõ ×ñéóôïý, ôçí ïðïßá åß÷áí ðñïâëÝøåé áéþíåò ðñéí ïé ðñïöÞôåò, åßíáé ãåãïíüò êïóìïãïíéêÞ�� óçìáóßáò, ôï ïðïßï åðçñÝáóå ôïõò ëáïýò üëùí ôùí ÷ùñþí êáé ðïëéôéóìþí êáé åðÝäñáóå óôçí ôÜîç êáé ôï ìÝëëïí üëùí ôùí ïñáôþí êáé áïñÜôùí ðñáãìÜôùí. Åäþ äåí åðñüêåéôï ãéá ìéá óõíçèéóìÝíç ãÝííçóç. Ï Äçìéïõñãüò ôçò Êôßóåùò åéóÞëèå óôïí ïñáôü êüóìï äéÜ ôçò Èåïôüêïõ. Ï Âáóéëåýò ôùí ÂáóéëÝùí êáé Êýñéïò ôùí Êõñßùí «óÜñî åãÝíåôï» (ÉùÜí. 1:14) áñ÷ßæïíôáò ôç æùÞ Ôïõ áíÜìåóÜ ìáò ì’ Ýíáí åêðëçêôéêÜ ôáðåéíü ôñüðï. ÐñÝðåé íá äéåñùôþìåèá ó÷åôéêÜ ìå áõôü ôïí ôáðåéíü ôñüðï ìå ôïí ïðïßï Üñ÷éóå ôçí óáñêùìÝíç æùÞ Ôïõ ï Êýñéüò ìáò. ÐáñÜ ôçí éó÷ý êáé ôçí äüîá Ôïõ, åðÝëåîå íá åéóÝëèç óôçí áíèñþðéíç æùÞ óôï ðéï áäýíáìï êáé åõáßóèçôï óôÜäéü ôçò, ôï íçðéáêü. ÅãåííÞèç êÜôù áðü áöéëüîåíåò óõíèÞêåò ó’ Ýíá óôáýëï ðåñéôñéãõñéóìÝíïò áðü æþá, ìáêñéÜ áðü ôçí Üíåóç ôïõ óðéôéïý êáé ôçò ïéêïãåíåßáò. Åðßóçò, óôçí áñ÷Þ ôçò æùÞò Ôïõ Ýãéíå ðñüóöõãáò êáé âñÝèçêå ìå ôçí ÌçôÝñá Ôïõ êáé ôïí ÉùóÞö óôçí Áßãõðôï, ÷þñá åîïñßáò. Ï ôñüðïò êáôÜ ôïí ïðïßïí ï ×ñéóôüò åóáñêþèç ìáò öáíåñþíåé ðñÜãìáôé ôçí ôåñáóôßá äýíáìç êáé áãÜðç ôïõ Èåïý. Äåí åöïâÞèç íá åìöáíéóèÞ óôç ãç êÜôù áðü ôéò ðéï ôáðåéíùôéêÝò óõíèÞêåò, «êáé åßäïìåí áõôüí êáé ïõê åß÷åí åßäïò ïõäÝ êÜëëïò»

(Çó. 53:3). Åí ìÝóù åíüò áðåéëçôéêïý êáé ÷áþäïõò êüóìïõ êáôÝóôç áðüëõôïò êõñßáñ÷ïò ôïõ èåúêïý ó÷åäßïõ Ôïõ ãéá ôç óùôçñßá ìáò. Èá óõãêáôÝâáéíå íá ôñáõìáôéóèÞ ãéá ôéò áíïìßåò ìáò êáé íá óõíôñéâÞ ãéá ôéò áìáñôßåò ìáò (Çóáúáò 53:5) áëëÜ ìÝóù ôçò åíäüîïõ äõíÜìåùò ôçò ÁíáóôÜóåþò Ôïõ èá ìáò ïäçãïýóå áðü ôïí èÜíáôï óôç æùÞ. Ï óýã÷ñïíïò êüóìïò ìáò äåí åßíáé ëéãüôåñï áðåéëçôéêüò. Ìðïñåß íá áðïëáìâÜíïõìå ôá ðëåïíåêôÞìáôá ôçò ìïíôÝñíáò ôå÷íïëïãßáò, ôçí õøçëÞ ðïéüôçôá æùÞò êáé ôá ùöÝëç ôçò åëåõèÝñáò êïéíùíßáò. ¼ìùò, êáèþò äéáðéóôþíïõìå ìÝñá ìå ôçí çìÝñá, æïýìå ó’ Ýíáí êüóìï öèáñìÝíï áðü ôçí ôñïìïêñáôßá êáé ôïí ðüëåìï, âáóáíéóìÝíï áðü ôçí ðåßíá êáé ôçí áññþóôéá êáé ìïëõóìÝíï áðü ôçí áìáñôßá ç ïðïßá êáôáóôñÝöåé ó÷Ýóåéò êáé æùÝò. ÁëëÜ ìðïñïýìå íá áíáêôÞóïõìå ôéò äõíÜìåéò ìáò áíáëïãéæüìåíïé üôé Åêåßíïò ðïõ Þôáí áðüëõôïò êõñßáñ÷ïò ôïõ ÷ñüíïõ êáé ôçò éóôïñßáò êáèþò åñ÷üôáí óôïí êüóìï áõôü ùò âñÝöïò, åßíáé åêåßíïò óôïõ Ïðïßïõ ôá ÷Ýñéá âñßóêåôáé ç æùÞ ìáò. Óôç ÷åéñüôåñç ðåñßðôùóç, äåí Ý÷ïõìå Ýíáí Èåü «ìç äõíÜìåíïí óõìðáèÞóáé ôáéò áóèåíåßáéò çìþí» áëëÜ Ýíá Èåü «ðåðåéñáóìÝíïí êáôÜ ðÜíôá êáè’ ïìïéüôçôá ÷ùñßò áìáñôßáò» (Åâñ. 4:15). Áõôüò åßíáé ï Éçóïýò, ï Õéüò ôïõ Èåïý, ï Ïðïßïò Þëèå ãéá íá åßíáé ìáæß ìáò êáé åí ìÝóù ôùí áäõíáìéþí, ðñïóðáèåéþí, áêüìç êáé ôïõ èáíÜôïõ, öáíåñþíåé ôçí Üíùèåí äýíáìç ç ïðïßá ðñïóöÝñåôáé óôïõò ðéóôåýïíôåò. ÌÝóù ôïõ åïñôáóìïý ôùí ×ñéóôïõãÝííùí, áõôÞò ôçò ìåãÜëçò êáé èáõìáóôÞò ÅïñôÞò ôçò Åêêëçóßáò ìáò åßèå ï Èåüò íá ìáò åíäõíáìþíç åí ðßóôåé êáé åëðßäé ãéá íá áíôéìåôùðßæïõìå ôéò ðñïêëÞóåéò ôïõ êüóìïõ ìáò. Åßèå ç ðñïóùðéêÞ ìáò ìáñôõñßá ôçò Óáñêþóåùò ôïõ ×ñéóôïý íá ÷áñßóç ôçí áëÞèåéá ôçò æùÞò êáé ôçò óùôçñßáò óå üëïõò. Åßèå ç åéñÞíç, ÷áñÜ êáé ðáñïõóßá ôïõ Êõñßïõ ìáò íá åßíáé óôïé÷åßï ôçò æùÞò üëùí óáò ðÜíôïôå áëëÜ éäéáßôåñá êáôÜ ôï áíáôÝëëïí íÝïí Ýôïò. ÊáëÜ ×ñéóôïýãåííá êé’ åõëïãçìÝíï ôï 2003. Ìå ðáôñéêÞ åí ×ñéóôþ áãÜðç,

ÿ ï Áñ÷éåðßóêïðïò ÁìåñéêÞò ÄçìÞôñéïò




Óôá óêáñéÜ ôï ÊÝíôñï ÏéêïãåíåéáêÞò Öñïíôßäïò ÅéäÞìïíåò óôïí ôïìÝá ôçò ÏéêïãÝíåéáò êáé ôïõ ÃÜìïõ, êëçñéêïß êáé Üëëá çãåôéêÜ óôåëÝ÷ç ôçò Áñ÷éåðéóêïðÞò óõììåôåß÷áí óå ìéá ðñþôç çìåñßäá – óõæÞôçóç óôñïããõëÞò ôñáðÝæçò õðü ôçí ðñïåäñåßá ôïõ ÓåâáóìéùôÜôïõ Áñ÷éåðéóêüðïõ ÁìåñéêÞò ê. Äçìçôñßïõ ôï ÓÜââáôï 7 Äåêåìâñßïõ, óôçí Áêáäçìßá ôïõ Áãßïõ Âáóéëåßïõ óôï ÃêÜñéóïí ôçò ÍÝáò Õüñêçò. ÊáôÜ ôçí Ýíáñîç ôùí åñãáóéþí ôçò óõíÜíôçóçò ï Áñ÷éåðßóêïðïò ôüíéóå ôçí óçìáóßá Üìåóçò áíôéìåôþðéóçò ôùí ðñïâëçìÜôùí êáé ôùí êñßóåùí ðïõ ðáñïõóéÜæïíôáé óÞìåñá óôçí ÏéêïãÝíåéá êáé ôçí

ÅéäéêÞ óõæÞôçóç ãéá ôçí ÏéêïãÝíåéá óôçí Áêáäçìßá ôïõ Áã. Âáóéëåßïõ

«¼ñáìá ìáò åßíáé ç äçìéïõñãßá åíüò ðáñáäåéãìáôéêïý éäñýìáôïò, ôï ïðïßï èá ëÜâåé çãåôéêÞ èÝóç óôïí ôïìÝá ôçò ïéêïãåíåéáêÞò öñïíôßäïò óôïí ÷ñéóôéáíéêü êüóìï ôçò óýã÷ñïíçò ÁìåñéêÞò». Üìåóç áíÜãêç íá «ðñïóöÝñïõìå ðáí äõíáôü óôçí ÏéêïãÝíåéá» êáé êÜëåóå üëïõò íá áíáëïãéóôïýí ôï äõíçôéêü ìÝãåèïò ôçò èåôéêÞò óõíåéóöïñÜò ôçò Åêêëçóßáò óôçí æùÞ êáé åõôõ÷ßá ôçò ÏéêïãÝíåéáò äéÜ ìÝóïõ åíüò åõñýôåñïõ ðñïãñÜììáôïò äéáêïíßáò êáé óôÞñéîçò óôïí ôïìÝá áõôü. ÊáôÜ ôçí äéÜñêåéá ôùí óõæçôÞóåùí ìåëåôÞèçêáí ïé óçìáíôéêüôåñåò ðñïêëÞóåéò ðïõ áíôéìåôùðßæïõí ïé ïéêïãÝíåéåò óÞìåñá êáèþò êáé ôñüðïé áíôéìåôùðß-


Ãéá ôçí äçìéïõñãßá ÊÝíôñïõ Öñïíôßäïò ôçò ÏéêïãÝíåéáò áíôÜëëáîáí áðüøåéò êáé Ýèåóáí âÜóåéò ïé óõììåôÝ÷ïíôåò óôçí çìåñßäá ðïõ óõãêÜëåóå ï Áñ÷éåðßóêïðïò óôçí Áêáäçìßá ôïõ Áãßïõ Âáóéëåßïõ.

óåþò ôïõò. ÓõóôÞèçêáí ôñåéò åðéôñïðÝò ìå óêïðü ôçí áíÜëõóç ôùí åðß ìÝñïõò ôñüðùí êáé ìåèüäùí ìÝ÷ñé ôçí åðüìåíç óõíÜíôçóç ôïí ÌÜñôéï ôïõ 2003. Ôï ðñþôï ðåñßãñáììá êáé ïé ó÷åôéêÝò ðëçñïöïñßåò èá ðáñïõóéáóôïýí ðñïò óõæÞôçóç

óôéò åáñéíÝò óõíåäñéÜóåéò ôçò ÉåñÜò Åðáñ÷éáêÞò Óõíüäïõ êáé ôïõ Áñ÷éåðéóêïðéêïý Óõìâïõëßïõ. Ç ðñþôç áõôÞ çìåñßäá êáé ïé Üëëåò åíÝñãåéåò óôïí ôïìÝá åíßó÷õóçò ôçò ÏéêïãÝíåéáò áðïôåëïýí öõóéêü åðáêü-

ëïõèï ôçò éäéáßôåñçò Ýìöáóçò ðïõ Ýäùóå ï Áñ÷éåðßóêïðïò ÄçìÞôñéïò óôï èÝìá, óôçí ðñïãñáììáôéêÞ ïìéëßá ôïõ ôçò 36çò ÊëçñéêïëáúêÞò Óõíåëåýóåùò ôïí ðåñáóìÝíï Éïýëéï óôï Ëïò ¢íôæåëåò. Ï Óåâáóìéþôáôïò Áñ÷éåðßóêïðïò Ý÷åé áíáêïéíþóåé ôçí áðáñ÷Þ ôïõ ó÷åäéáóìïý äçìéïõñãßáò åíüò ÊÝíôñïõ ÏéêïãåíåéáêÞò Öñïíôßäïò. Ôï ÊÝíôñï áõôü èá åðåîåñãáóôåß ðñïãñÜììáôá êáé èá åîáóöáëßóåé ðüñïõò ìå óêïðü ôçí áíôéìåôþðéóç èåìÜôùí üðùò ç ðñïåôïéìáóßá ãéá ôïí ãÜìï, ïé åíäïïéêïãåíåéáêÝò äõóêïëßåò, ïé ìéêôïß ãÜìïé, ïé éäéáéôåñüôçôåò ôùí ïéêïãåíåéþí êëçñéêþí êáé ôá ðñïâëÞìáôá ïéêïãåíåéþí åí äéáóôÜóåé. ÐñïâëÝðåôáé åðßóçò ç ðáñáãùãÞ êáé äéáíïìÞ ïðôéêïáêïõóôéêþí ìÝóùí êáé ðëçñïöïñéáêþí öõëëáäßùí êáé âéâëßùí ó÷åôéêþí ìå ôá èÝìáôá áõôÜ þóôå íá äéáíåìçèïýí óôéò åíïñßåò êáé óôéò ïéêïãÝíåéåò ôçò ÉåñÜò Áñ÷éåðéóêïðÞò. ÅðéðñïóèÝôùò ôï ÊÝíôñï èá ïñãáíþíåé óåìéíÜñéá êáé åðéìïñöùôéêÜ ðñïãñÜììáôá ãéá ôçí äéáöþôéóç ôùí ðéóôþí åðß ïéêïãåíåéáêþí èåìÜôùí êáé èá ðñïóöÝñåé óõìâïõëåõôéêÝò õðçñåóßåò äéÜ ôçëåöþíïõ Þ äéáäéêôýïõ. Ó÷åôéêÜ ìå ôçí ëåéôïõñãßá êáé ôï Ýñãï ôïõ ÊÝíôñïõ ÏéêïãåíåéáêÞò Öñïíôßäïò ï Áñ÷éåðßóêïðïò ôüíéóå åðéãñáììáôéêÜ: «¼ñáìá ìáò åßíáé ç äçìéïõñãßá åíüò ðáñáäåéãìáôéêïý éäñýìáôïò, ôï ïðïßï èá ëÜâåé çãåôéêÞ èÝóç óôïí ôïìÝá ôçò ïéêïãåíåéáêÞò öñïíôßäïò óôïí ÷ñéóôéáíéêü êüóìï ôçò óýã÷ñïíçò ÁìåñéêÞò».

Áñ÷éåðßóêïðïò êáé Õðïõñãüò Ðïëéôéóìïý óõæÞôçóáí Ïëõìðéáêïýò Áãþíåò êáé ðïëéôéóôéêÞ ðñïâïëÞ ÍÅÁ ÕÏÑÊÇ.– Ï Õðïõñãüò Ðïëéôéóìïý ê. ÅõÜããåëïò ÂåíéæÝëïò åðéóêÝöèçêå ôïí Óåâáóìéþôáôï Áñ÷éåðßóêïðï ÁìåñéêÞò ê. ÄçìÞôñéï óôéò 5 Äåêåìâñßïõ êáé åß÷å ìáæß ôïõ óõíÜíôçóç ìßáò êáé ðëÝïí þñáò.

Ç óõíÜíôçóç äéåîÞ÷èç «óå Ýíá áíèñþðéíï åðßðåäï ïõóéáóôéêÞò åðéêïéíùíßáò, åãêáñäéüôçôïò, áãÜðçò êáé êïéíïý ðÜèïõò ãéá ôçí áëÞèåéá êáé ãéá üôé áðïññÝåé áðü ôïí åëëçíéêü ìáò êáé ïñèüäïîï ðïëéôéóìü», äÞëùóå ï Áñ÷éåðßóêïðïò. ÓõæçôÞèçêáí èÝìáôá ðïëéôéóôéêÜ êáé Ýãéíå áíáöïñÜ óôçí ðñïåôïéìáóßá ôùí Ïëõìðéáêþí Áãþíùí êáèþò êáé óôéò åîåëßîåéò åðß ôïõ Êõðñéáêïý. Åéäéêüôåñá, ï Óåâáóìéþôáôïò Áñ÷éåðßóêïðïò óå äçëþóåéò óôá Ì.Ì.Å. ìåôÜ ôï ôÝëïò ôçò óõíÜíôçóçò ìåôáîý Üëëùí äÞëùóå: «åèßîáìå Ýíá áñéèìü èåìÜôùí ðïëéôéóôéêÞò õöÞò ôüóï ùò ðñïò ôçí ÅëëÜäá áëëÜ êáé ùò ðñïò ôçí ÁìåñéêÞ. ¸íá óçìáíôéêü ìÝñïò ôçò óõæçôÞóåþò ìáò ó÷åôßæåôï ìå ôï ìåãÜëï ãåãïíüò ôùí ðñïóå÷þí Ïëõìðéáêþí Áãþíùí óôçí ÁèÞíá ãéá ôï ïðïßï ï ê. Õðïõñãüò Ý÷åé éäéáßôåñç åõèýíç êáé öïâåñÞ ìÝñéìíá, óõæçôÞóáìå ãéá ôï Êõðñéáêü ôï ïðïßï

åßíáé åðßóçò óôï ðñïóêÞíéï áðü ðëåõñÜò åèíéêïý êáé äéåèíïýò åíäéáöÝñïíôïò. ÓõæçôÞóáìå áêüìç ãéá ðïëéôéóôéêÝò åêäçëþóåéò ðÝñáí ôùí Ïëõìðéáêþí... êáé ãåíéêüôåñá ãéá ôïí ñüëï êáé ôçí áíÜãêç óõíå÷ïýò ðñïóöïñÜò êáé ðáñïõóßáò áõôïý ôïõ åîáéñåôéêïý êáé ìïíáäéêïý óôïé÷åßïõ ðïõ Ý÷ïõìå ùò ¸ëëçíåò êáé Ïñèüäïîïé...åðñüêåéôï ãéá ìéá þñá ãüíéìçò ïõóéáóôéêÞò êáé âáèýôáôá áíèñþðéíçò åðéêïéíùíßáò ãéá ôçí ïðïßá åßìáé åõãíþìùí óôïí åêëåêôü üíôùò ößëï êáé óõìðáôñéþôç Õðïõñãü ê. ÂåíéæÝëï». Áíôáðáíôþíôáò ï ê. ÂåíéæÝëïò åîÞñå ôçí åêêëçóéáóôéêÞ êáé áêáäçìáúêÞ ðñïóùðéêüôçôá ôïõ Áñ÷éåðéóêüðïõ ëÝãïíôáò: «ðÜíôá ìéá óõæÞôçóç ìáæß ôïõ åßíáé áðüëáõóç ðíåõìáôéêÞ... åß÷áìå ôçí åõêáéñßá íá óõæçôÞóïõìå ãéá üëá ôá èÝìáôá ðïõ óáò åßðå, åíçìÝñùóá ôïí Óåâáóìéþôáôï ãéá ôçí ðïëéôéêÞ êáôÜóôáóç óôçí ÅëëÜäá, ãéá ôï ìåãÜëï æÞôçìá ôçò Êýðñïõ, ãéá ôçí åðéêåßìåíç Ýíôáîç ôçò Êýðñïõ óôçí ÅõñùðáúêÞ ¸íùóç êáé ãéá ôïí ôñüðï ìå ôïí üðïéï áíôéìåôùðßæïõìå ôçí ðñùôïâïõëßá ôïõ Ãåíéêïý ÃñáììáôÝá ôïõ Ïñãáíéóìïý ÇíùìÝíùí Åèíþí. ÌéëÞóáìå ãéá ôçí ÏëõìðéáêÞ ðñïåôïéìáóßá ãéáôß ðñÝðåé íá îÝñåé ç Ïñèïäïîßá óôçí ÁìåñéêÞ êáé ï Åëëçíéóìüò ôçò ÁìåñéêÞò, ôé êÜíåé ç ÅëëÜäá ðñïåôïéìÜæïíôáò ôïõò Ïëõìðéáêïýò áãþíåò, ìéëÞóáìå ãéá ôçí ðïëéôéóôéêÞ ÏëõìðéÜäá êáé ãéá ôéò åêäçëþóåéò ðïõ åôïéìÜæïõìå åäþ óôçí ÁìåñéêÞ ìå êïñõöáßá ìéá åêäÞëùóç ôïí ÌÜéï óôçí Metropolitan Opera. Åðßóçò ôïí åíçìÝñùóá ãéá ôéò äéÜöïñåò ðôõ÷Ýò ôïõ ôáîéäéïý ìïõ åäþ óôçí ÍÝá Õüñêç êáé ãéá ôçí ÷èåóéíÞ ðáñïõóßá ìïõ óôçí ãåíéêÞ óõíÝëåõóç ôïõ ÏÇÅ, ãéá ôçí ðñùôïâïõëßá ðïõ èá áíáêïéíþóïõìå áýñéï ìå ôçí UNICEF êáé ãéá ôéò åðáöÝò ðïõ èá Ý÷ù ìå ôïí äÞìáñ÷ï ôçò ðüëçò ôïí ê. Bloomberg êáé ôïí êõâåñíÞôç ê. Pataki åí’ üøåé ôçò õðïøçöéüôçôáò ôçò ÍÝáò Õüñêçò ãéá ôïõò Ïëõìðéáêïýò Áãþíåò ôïõ 2012».


Ôçí ê. Íôüñá Ìðáêïãé��ííç óõíüäåõáí ï óýæõãüò ôçò Éóßäùñïò Êïýâåëïò êáé ï ãáìðñüò ôçò êáé óõíåñãÜôçò ôçò ÄçìÞôñçò Æáöåéñüðïõëïò.

Ç íÝá äÞìáñ÷ïò ôçò ÁèÞíáò óôçí Áñ÷éåðéóêïðÞ ÍÅÁ ÕÏÑÊÇ. – Ç íåïåêëåãåßò äÞìáñ÷ïò Áèçíáßùí ê. Íôüñá ÌðáêïãéÜííç ç ïðïßá âñÝèçêå óôçí ÍÝá Õüñêç ãéá ìéá óåéñÜ åðáöþí åðéóêÝöèçêå ôïí Áñ÷éåðßóêïðï ÄçìÞôñéï. ÓõæÞôçóáí èÝìáôá ó÷åôéêÜ ìå ôïõò åðéêåßìåíïõò Ïëõìðéáêïýò Áãþíåò óôçí ÁèÞíá ôïõ 2004, ôï ó÷Ýäéï Êüöé ÁíÜí ãéá ôï Êõðñéáêü êáèþò êáé ôá ó÷Ýäéá ôçò êõñßáò ÌðáêïãéÜííç ãéá ôçí ÁèÞíá. ÌåôÜ ôï ôÝëïò ôçò óõíÜíôçóçò ðïõ äéÞñêåóå ìéá ðåñßðïõ þñá ç ê. ÌðáêïãéÜííç äÞëùóå: «îåêéíþ ðÜíôïôå ôçí åðßóêåøç óôçí ÁìåñéêÞ áðü ìéá åðßóêåøç óôï Óåâáóìéþôáôï ôïõ ïðïßïõ ç åìðåéñßá, ç ãíþóç êáé ç ðïëýôéìç óõíåéóöïñÜ óôá èÝìáôá ôçò ÏìïãÝíåéáò, áëëÜ êáé ôá èÝìáôá ðïõ áðáó÷ïëïýí ôçí ÅëëÜäá, ôá ïíïìáæüìåíá ÅèíéêÜ åßíáé ðÜñá ðïëý ìåãÜëç. Ôïí åíçìÝñùóá ãéá ôá ðñïãñÜììáôá ôá ïðïßá Ý÷ïõìå óêïðü íá õëïðïéÞóïõìå óôçí ÁèÞíá åí üøåé âÝâáéá ôçò

ÁèÞíáò 2004, ãéá ôï ÓõíÝäñéï ôçò Á×ÅÐÁ êáé ìïõ äüèçêå ç åõêáéñßá íá ôïõ ðù ìå ðüóç ìåãÜëç ÷áñÜ èá ôïí ðåñéìÝíïõìå óôçí ÁèÞíá ...» Ï Óåâáóìéþôáôïò Áñ÷éåðßóêïðïò ÁìåñéêÞò ê. ÄçìÞôñéïò åîÝöñáóå ôçí éäéáßôåñç ÷áñÜ ôïõ ãéá ôçí åõêáéñßá óõíÜíôçóçò: «...ç åêëåêôÞ êáé ðïëý áãáðçôÞ äÞìáñ÷ïò Áèçíáßùí, ç ê. ÌðáêïãéÜííç öÝñíåé áõôüí ôïí áÝñá ôçò áñ÷ïíôéÜò, ôçò åëåõèåñßáò ôïõ ðÜèïõò ãéá ôá äñþìåíá ü÷é ìüíï åí ÅëëÜäé, áëëÜ êáé äéåèíþò... Ýóôù êáé óå ëßãï ÷ñüíï åß÷áìå ôçí äõíáôüôçôá ïõóéáóôéêþí áíôáëëáãþí, üðùò ç ßäéá ôï èÝìá ôïõ Êõðñéáêïý ðïõ ìáò áðáó÷ïëåß óïâáñÜ êáé õðÜñ÷åé óêÝøç íá äïýìå ðüóï ìðïñïýìå íá ìåãéóôïðïéÞóïõìå ôçí ðñïóöïñÜ ôçí ïðïßá ìðïñïýìå íá êÜíïõìå áõôÝò ôéò çìÝñåò ìåôÜ ôçí ðáñÜäïóç ôïõ êåéìÝíïõ ôïõ ãåíéêïý ãñáììáôÝá ôïõ ÏÇÅ».





ÈÅÉÁ ËÅÉÔÏÕÑÃÉÁ óôïí ¢ãéï ÄçìÞôñéï ôçò Èåóóáëïíßêçò

Óôï êýñéï èÝìá ôïõ õðïãñÜììéóå ôéò ðïéìáíôéêÝò ðñïêëÞóåéò ôçò ðïëõöùíéêÞò êïéíùíßáò ôçò ÁìåñéêÞò ãéá ôïõò Åëëçíïñèïäüîïõò ×ñéóôéáíïýò, üðïõ áðïôåëïýí ìéá åëÜ÷éóôç ìåéïíüôçôá 0,6 % (1,5% óõíïëéêü ðïóïóôü Ïñèïäüîùí óôéò ÇÐÁ), áëëÜ êáé ôçí áßóèçóç áóöÜëåéáò, ðïõ ôïõò ðñïóöÝñåé ï óýíäåóìüò ôïõò ìå ôï Ïéêïõìåíéêü Ðáôñéáñ÷åßï êáé ìå ôïõò õðüëïéðïõò áíÜ ôç ãç Ïñèïäüîïõò. «Ôï ÷ñÝïò ôçò Åêêëçóßáò ìáò åßíáé íá åõñßóêåôáé äéáñêþò åí áðïóôïëÞ», êáôÝëçîå ï ê. ÄçìÞôñéïò, áíáöåñüìåíïò óå ó÷åôéêü ÷ùñßï ôïõ Áð. Ðáýëïõ, þóôå íá äéáôçñåßôáé ôï ïñèüäïîï Þèïò êáé ïé åëëçíéêÝò ðïëéôéóôéêÝò êáôáâïëÝò íá áðáíôïýí äçìéïõñãéêÜ áêüìç êáé óôá «ðéï áäéáíüçôá êáé áóýëëçðôá åíäå÷üìåíá» (think the unthinkable). Ç ôåëåôÞ Ýêëåéóå ìå ýìíïõò áðü ôçí åïñôÞ ôïõ ÌåãáëïìÜñôõñïò Áãßïõ Äçìçôñßïõ êáé ôç öÞìç ôïõ Áñ÷éåðéóêüðïõ ÁìåñéêÞò. Ôï ðñùú ôçò ßäéáò çìÝñáò, ýóôåñá áðü ðñüóêëçóç ôùí ôåëåéïöïßôùí öïéôçôþí ôùí äýï ÔìçìÜôùí, Èåïëïãßáò êáé ÐïéìáíôéêÞò êáé ÊïéíùíéêÞò Èåïëïãßáò, ï Áñ÷éåðßóêïðïò ÁìåñéêÞò ê. ÄçìÞôñéïò ðáñÝóôç óôéò äýï áëëçëïäéÜäï÷åò åðßóçìåò ôåëåôÝò ïñêùìïóßáò ôïõò. ÌÝóá óå ìßá óõãêéíçóéáêÜ öïñôéóìÝíç áôìüóöáéñá áðü ôçí ðáñïõóßá ôùí êáèçãçôþí, ôùí óõããåíþí êáé ôùí ößëùí ôùí ôåëåéïöïßôùí, ï Áñ÷éåðßóêïðïò ê. ÄçìÞôñéïò

ôïí êáôÜìåóôï áðü ðéóôïýò éóôïñéêü íáü ôïõ Áãßïõ Äçìçôñßïõ åôÝëåóå ôçí Èåßá Ëåéôïõñãßá ï Óåâáóìéþôáôïò Áñ÷éåðßóêïðïò ÁìåñéêÞò ê. ÄçìÞôñéïò ôçí ÊõñéáêÞ 17 Íïåìâñßïõ, åíþ åõñßóêåôï óôçí Èåóóáëïíßêç ãéá íá ðáñáëÜâåé ôï ôéìçôéêü äéäáêôïñéêü äßðëùìá áðü ôï ÁñéóôïôÝëåéï ÐáíåðéóôÞìéï Èåóóáëïíßêçò. ÐÜíù áðü 10 ÷éëéÜäåò êüóìïõ åß÷áí êáôáêëýóåé ôï åóùôåñéêü ôïõ íáïý êáé ôïõò äéðëïýò åîþóôåò ôïõ, áöïý ìÜëéóôá óõíÝðåóå íá åõñßóêåôáé åêåß ãéá ðñïóêýíçìá ç éåñÞ åéêüíá ôçò Ðáíáãßáò ôùí Éåñïóïëýìùí (Éåñïóïëõìßôéóóá) êáé ôìÞìá ôïõ ôéìßïõ îýëïõ ôïõ Ôéìßïõ Óôáõñïý. ÐïëëÝò Üëëåò ÷éëéÜäåò ðéóôïß ðåñßìåíáí óå ìéá áôÝëåéùôç óåéñÜ åêôüò ôïõ íáïý ãéá íá ðñïóêõíÞóïõí. Õðïëïãßæåôáé üôé ï áñéèìüò ôùí ðéóôþí ðïõ ðñïóêýíçóáí ôçí åéêüíá ôçò Ðáíáãßáò êáôÜ ôçí äéÜñêåéá ôùí äýï ðåñßðïõ åâäïìÜäùí ðïõ ðáñÝìåéíå óôç Èåóóáëïíßêç îåðÝñáóå ôá äýï åêáôïììýñéá. Ç åéêüíá ìåôáöÝñèçêå áìÝóùò ìåôÜ óôçí ÁèÞíá. Ï Áñ÷éåðßóêïðïò åîÝöñáóå ôçí ìåãÜëç åíôýðùóç ðïõ ôïõ Ýêáíå ç ðßóôç, õðïìïíÞ êáé êáñôåñéêüôçôá ôïõ êüóìïõ ðïõ äåí óôáìÜôçóå ó÷åäüí êáèüëïõ ôçí ðñïóêýíçóç ôçò åéêüíïò áêüìá êáé êáôÜ ôçí äéÜñêåéá ôçò Èåßáò Ëåéôïõñãßáò. Ìå ôïí Áñ÷éåðßóêïðï ÄçìÞôñéï óõëëåéôïýñãçóáí ï ÌÝãáò Áñ÷éìáíäñßôçò ð. ÉùÜííçò ÔáóóéÜò, ðñùôïóýãêåëïò ôçò ÉåñÜò Ìçôñïðüëåùò Èåóóáëïíßêçò êáé ðñïúóôÜìåíïò ôïõ íáïý êáèþò êáé ðïëëïß Üëëïé êëçñéêïß ôçò Èåóóáëïíßêçò.


Ï ÁÑ×ÉÅÐÉÓÊÏÐÏÓ óõãêéíçìÝíïò ðñïóöùíåß ôïõò ðáñüíôåò óôçí ôåëåôÞ.

áðåêÜëåóå ôïõò áðáóôñÜðôïíôåò áðü ÷áñÜ íåáñïýò èåïëüãïõò «óõíáäÝëöïõò», ôïõò ôüíéóå ôçí áíÜãêç äõíáìéêÞò èåïëïãéêÞò ìáñôõñßáò óôçí óýã÷ñïíç ðáãêüóìéá êïéíüôçôá, üðùò åðßóçò êáé ôï ÷ñÝïò íá áíáæçôþíôáé íÝïé ôñüðïé ðïéìáíôéêÞò ðñïóÝããéóçò. «ÌÝ÷ñé ôþñá óáò ãíùñßæáìå áðü ôá


óõããñÜììáôÜ óáò ðïõ ìåëåôÞóáìå óôçí äéÜñêåéá ôùí óðïõäþí ìáò êáé ôþñá ìáò åõëïãåßôáé óôçí ðéï óçìáíôéêÞ çìÝñá ôçò æùÞò ìáò. Èá ôï èõìüìáóôå áõôü ãéá ðÜíôá êáé åìåßò êáé üëïé ðïõ åßíáé ìáæß ìáò óôç óçìåñéíÞ ìáò ÷áñÜ», äÞëùóáí ïé íåáñïß èåïëüãïé! Ôïí Óåâáóìéþôáôï óõíüäåõáí ï ðñüåäñïò ôïõ Åëëçíéêïý Êïëåãßïõ/ÈåïëïãéêÞò Ó÷ïëÞò ôïõ Ôéìßïõ Óôáõñïý ôçò Âïóôþíçò, ð. Íéêüëáïò Ôñéáíôáöýëëïõ, ï ðñýôáíçò ôçò èåïëïãéêÞò Ó÷ïëÞò ôïõ Ôéìßïõ Óôáõñïý ð. ÅììáíïõÞë ÊëÜøçò êáé ï äéÜêïíïò ÐáíôåëåÞìùí Ðáðáäüðïõëïò.

Ç ÏËÕÌÐÉÁÊÇ ÁÅÑÏÐÏÑÉÁ åý÷åôáé óå ïëüêëçñç ôçí OìïãÝíåéá

ÊáëÜ ×ñéóôïýãåííá êáé Åõôõ÷éóìÝíï ôï 2003


×éëéÜäåò ðéóôïß ðáñáêïëïýèçóáí ìå êáôÜíõîç ôçí Èåßá Ëåéôïõñãßá óôïí Áã. ÄçìÞôñéï.


Äçëþóåéò ãéá ôçí Êýðñï


áðëþò ãåãïíüôá Þ óçìáíôéêÝò åîåëßîåéò ãéá íá Ý÷ïõìå ìéá áíÜìéîç. Åßìáóôå óå ìéá óõíå÷Þ ðïñåßá ìå ôá ãåãïíüôá, åí ðñïóåõ÷Þ áëëÜ êáé åí áãùíéóôéêüôçôé óå üëá ôá åðßðåäá. Ïé Ïìïãåíåßò Ý÷ïõí áíÜìåéêôá áéóèÞìáôá, õðÜñ÷åé ðÜíôïôå ç åëðßäá, õðÜñ÷åé ðÜíôïôå ç ðßóôç óôï Èåü êáé ç âåâáéüôçôá ãéá ôçí åðéêñÜôçóç ôïõ Äéêáßïõ, õðÜñ÷åé ðÜíôïôå ï óêåðôéêéóìüò ëüãù ìáêñï÷ñüíéáò ðáñáìïíÞò áõôÞò ôçò íïóçñÞò êáôáóôÜóåùò ÷ùñßò ëýóç, üëá áõôÜ ìáæß. Êáé åðïìÝíùò ôá óõíáéóèÞìáôá åßíáé Ýíá ìßãìá åëðßäáò, Ýíá ìßãìá åðéöõëáêôéêüôçôáò, Ýíá ìßãìá åîáéñåôéêÞò åãñÞãïñóçò áëëÜ êáé Ýíá ìßãìá äéáèÝóåùò íá êÜíïõí ôï ðáí ãéá íá ïéêïäïìÞóïõí Ýóôù êáé óôï ðáñáìéêñüôåñï óôïé÷åßï ðïõ äßäåôáé, ãéá íá ïéêïäïìÞóïõìå êáé ìç ÷áèåß ç åõêáéñßá ðïõ äßäåôáé».

Ãéá ðåñéóóüôåñåò ðëçñïöïñßåò áðïôáèåßôå óôïí ôáîéäéùôéêü óáò ðñÜêôïñá Þ óôçí ÏëõìðéáêÞ Áåñïðïñßá © ORTHODOX OBSERVER

åôÜ ôçí ôåëåôÞ áíáãïñåýóåþò ôïõ óå Åðßôéìï ÄéäÜêôïñá, ï Áñ÷éåðßóêïðïò ÄçìÞôñéïò áðáíôþíôáò óå åñþôçóç äçìïóéïãñÜöïõ ó÷åôéêÜ ìå ôï Êõðñéáêü äÞëùóå: «Ôï æÞôçìá ôçò Êýðñïõ åßíáé ðñüêëçóç ðïõ ó÷åôßæåôáé ìå áíèñþðéíá äéêáéþìáôá êáé ìßá ðñüêëçóç ðïõ ó÷åôßæåôáé ìå êáôÜöùñç áäéêßá. Ï Åëëçíéóìüò ôçò ÁìåñéêÞò åßíáé åîáéñåôéêÜ åõáßóèçôïò óå èÝìáôá áäéêßáò, óå èÝìáôá êáôáðáôÞóåùò áíèñùðßíùí äéêáéùìÜôùí êáé óå èÝìáôá ìç ðáñï÷Þò åëåõèåñßáò óôïõò áíèñþðïõò ïé ïðïßïé ìéá öïñÜ æïõí óå äéóåêáôïììýñéá ÷ñüíéá êáé äåí Ý÷åé êáíåßò ôï äéêáßùìá íá ôïõò óôåñÞóåé, óôïí êÜèå, óôïí ôåëåõôáßï Üíèñùðï, áõôÞò ôçò ìïíáäéêÞò äõíáôüôçôáò. Áõôüò ï Åëëçíéóìüò Ý÷åé ðïëý ìåãÜëç áßóèçóç áõôïý ôïõ ðñÜãìáôïò. Ðáëåýåé ï åëëçíéóìüò. Äåí ðåñéìÝíáìå íá ãßíïõí





ÏÉÊÏÕÌÅÍÉÊÏÍ ÐÁÔÑÉÁÑ×ÅÉÏÍ ÐÁÔÑÉÁÑ×ÉÊÇ ÁÐÏÄÅÉÎÉÓ Ðñùôåýùí ï ñüëïò ôïõ Ïéêïõìåíéêïý ÐáôñéÜñ÷ïõ ÅÐÉ ÔÏÉÓ ×ÑÉÓÔÏÕÃÅÍÍÏÉÓ óôçí ðñïóÝããéóç ×ñéóôéáíþí êáé ÌïõóïõëìÜíùí ÿ ÂÁÑÈÏËÏÌÁÉÏÓ ÅËÅÙ ÈÅÏÕ ÁÑ×ÉÅÐÉÓÊÏÐÏÓ ÊÙÍÓÔÁÍÔÉÍÏÕÐÏËÅÙÓ, ÍÅÁÓ ÑÙÌÇÓ ÊÁÉ ÏÉÊÏÕÌÅÍÉÊÏÓ ÐÁÔÑÉÁÑ×ÇÓ ÐÁÍÔÉ ÔÙ ÐËÇÑÙÌÁÔÉ ÔÇÓ ÅÊÊËÇÓÉÁÓ ×ÁÑÉÍ, ÅËÅÏÓ ÊÁÉ ÅÉÑÇÍÇÍ ÐÁÑÁ ÔÏÕ ÅÍ ÂÇÈËÅÅÌ ÃÅÍÍÇÈÅÍÔÏÓ ÓÙÔÇÑÏÓ ×ÑÉÓÔÏÕ «[ ÅðåóêÝøáôï ]çì`áò [åî }õøïõò ]ï ÓùôÞñ ]çì`ùí... Êáß ïŸé [åí óêüôåé êáß óêé~`á å}õñïìåí ôÞí [áëÞèåéáí». [ Áäåëöïß êáß ôÝêíá [åí Êõñß~ù [áãáðçôÜ, ÐáíÜñ÷áéïò êáß ðáíáíèñþðéíïò å®éíáé ]ï ðüèïò ô`çò [áëçèåßáò êáß ðïéêßëáé êáß êïðéþäåéò êáôåâëÞèçóáí êáß [ á êüìç êáôáâÜëëïíôáé ] õ ðü ô` ç ò [ á íèñùðüôçôïò ðñïóðÜèåéáé äéÜ ôÞí ðñïóÝããéóéí á[õô`çò. Å[õëüãùò äÝ [áíáæçôå¡éôáé ]ç [áëÞèåéá, äéüôé ]ç ãí`ùóéò á[õô`çò [åëåõèåñþíåé [áðü ôÞí ðëÜíçí êáß ôÜ óõíåðáêüëïõèá á[õô`çò. [ Áëë’ [áôõ÷`ùò, äéÜ ôÞí [áíáæÞôçóéí ô`çò [áëçèåßáò äÝí [áêïëïõèï`õìåí ðÜíôïôå ôÞí [ïñèÞí ï ] äüí, ðïëëáß äÝ õ ] ð`çñîáí êáß å[ îáêïëïõèï`õí íÜ õ ] ðÜñ÷ïõí áŸé å[ óöáëìÝíáé äéäáóêáëßáé, áŸé ]ïðï¡éáé [áðÞôçóáí êáôÜ êáéñïýò êáß [áðáéôï`õí [áêüìç êáß óÞìåñïí ôÞí [áíáãíþñéóéí á[õô`ùí ]ùò [åêöñáóô`ùí ô`çò [áëçèåßáò. ÓÞìåñïí éœ äéáéôÝñùò ðåñéóóüôåñïí á [ ðü á { ëëïôå á [ ðåõèýíïíôáé ðñüò ç ] ì`áò äéÜöïñïé õ ] ðïóôçñéêôáß á [ íáôïëéê`ùí ôéíùí ç { á { ëëùí á [ ðçñ÷áéùìÝíùí äéäáóêáëé`ùí êáß å[ ìöáíßæïõí á[õôÜò ù ] ò íÝáò êáß ù ] ò óõíïäåõoìÝíáò ìÝ êïóìéêÞí ç { õ ] ðåñöõóéêÞí éœ ó÷ýí, å[ ðß ô~ç ` âÜóåé äÝ ðïëë`ùí õ ] ðïó÷Ýóåùí äé’ á [ ðüêôçóéí ðíåõìáôéê`ùí å[ ìðåéñé`ùí êáß äéáöüñùí å[ îïõóé`ùí á [ ðïðåéñ`ùíôáé íÜ ì`áò ðåßóïõí ï } ôé êáôÝ÷ïõí ôÞí ðëÞñç á [ ëÞèåéáí êáß ôÞí éœ ó÷õñïôÝñáí äýíáìéí [åí ô~`ù êüóì~ù. [ Áëë’ ]çìå¡éò, [áäåëöïß êáß ôÝêíá, ãíùñßæïìåí êáë`ùò [åê ðåßñáò }ïôé ]ç ÃÝííçóéò ôï`õ Êõñßïõ ç ] ì`ùí [ Éçóï`õ ×ñéóôï`õ, ôÞí ï ] ðïßáí ðáíçãõñéê`ùò å] ïñôÜæïìåí óÞìåñïí, «[áíÝôåéëå ô~`ù êüóì~ù ôü ö`ùò ôü ô`çò ãíþóåùò», ]ùò äÝ ëÝãåé ôü ] Éåñüí Å[õáããÝëéïí, äéÜ ô`çò ÃåííÞóåùò ôï`õ Êõñßïõ ]çì`ùí [ Éçóï`õ ×ñéóôï`õ «]ï ëáüò ]ï êáèÞìåíïò [åí óêüôåé å®éäå ö`ùò ìÝãá êáß ôï¡éò êáèçìÝíïéò [åí ÷þñ~á êáß óêé~`á èáíÜôïõ ö`ùò [áíÝôåéëåí á[õôï¡éò» (Ìáôè. 4, 16). Á[õôü äéáêçñýóóåé ðïéçôéê`ùò êáß ]ï Ÿéåñüò ]õìí~ùäüò ëÝãùí «ïŸé [åí óêüôåé êáß óêé~`á å}õñïìåí ôÞí [áëÞèåéáí». Á[õôÞ ]ç [áëÞèåéá, ôÞí ]ïðïßáí å}õñïìåí, äÝí å®éíáé ìßá ðñüôáóéò äéáíïçôéêÞ, ìßá äéáôýðùóéò ðåñß ôï`õ êüóìïõ, ôï`õ Èåï`õ êáß ôï`õ [áíèñþðïõ. Å®éíáé á[õôüò ï|õôïò ]ï Äçìéïõñãüò ôï`õ êüóìïõ, ]ï ÕŸéüò êáß Ëüãïò ôï`õ Èåï`õ, ]ï Êýñéïò ]çì`ùí [ Éçóï`õò ×ñéóôüò, ï ] å[ í ô~ù ` á [ óÞì~ù óðçëáß~ù ôáðåéí`ùò ãåííçèåßò äéÜ ôÞí ç ] ì`ùí óùôçñßáí êáß á [ ðïêáëýøáò ç ] ì¡éí ï [ íôïëïãéê`ùò êáß å[ ìðñÜêôùò ôÞí á { ðåéñïí á [ ãÜðçí á[õôï`õ äé’ å} íá å} êáóôïí å[ î ç ] ì`ùí, äßêáéïí {ç ]áìáñôùëüí. Å®éíáé á[õôüò ]ï ]ïðï¡éïò ì`áò [åâåâáßùóåí }ïôé ]ï ªéäéïò å®éíáé ]ç ]ïäüò êáß ]ç [áëÞèåéá êáß ]ç æùÞ êáß óõíåð`ùò [åÜí å}õñùìåí á[õôüí äÝí ÷ñåéáæüìåèá íÜ [áíáæçô`ùìåí {áëëçí ôéíÜ [áëÞèåéáí, äéüôé á[õôüò å®éíáé ]ç ìüíç [áëÞèåéá êáß ]ç ðëÞñçò [áëÞèåéá. ÄÝí {å÷ïìåí [áíÜãêçí ô`ùí [áíáôïëéê`ùí {ç {Üëëùí ïŸéáóäÞðïôå ðñïåëåýóåùò øåõôïäéäáóêÜëùí êáß ô`ùí ðáñáðëáíçôéê`ùí ]õðïó÷Ýóåùí á[õô`ùí. [ ÁíôéèÝôùò, ãíùñßæïìåí }ïôé êáß á[õôïß ïŸé êáôÜ ôÜ ëïéðÜ åœéò ôÞí ðëÜíçí å]õñéóêüìåíïé ìÜãïé \çëèïí å[ î áíáôïë`ùí é¬ íá ðñïóêõíÞóïõí ôüí Êýñéïí ç ] ì`ùí [ Éçóï`õí ×ñéóôüí, ù ] ò âáóéëÝá. Á[õôüí ôüí [ Éçóï`õí ×ñéóôüí ôüí [åî [áãÜðçò êåíþóáíôá ]åáõôüí [áðü ô`çò âáóéëéê`çò äüîçò êáß ]ïìïéùèÝíôá ðñüò ôüí {áíèñùðïí, ¬éíá ôï`õôïí ]ïìïéþó~ç ô~`ù Èå~`ù, [ïöåßëïìåí ¬éíá [áãáðÞóùìåí êáß [áêïëïõèÞóùìåí [åî }ïëçò øõ÷`çò êáß äéáíïßáò. { Áò [áêïëïõèÞóùìåí åœéò ôï`õôï ôïýò ôáðåéíïýò ðïéìÝíáò ô`çò ÂçèëåÝì, [áëëÜ êáß ôïýò ìÜãïõò [åêåßíïõò åœéò ôïýò ]ïðïßïõò «{åäåéîåí [áóôÞñ ôüí ðñü ]çëßïõ Ëüãïí, [åëèüíôá ðá`õóáé ôÞí ]áìáñôßáí», êáß {áò [áñíçè`ùìåí íÜ [áêïýùìåí ôïýò óõã÷ñüíïõò [åêåßíïõò ìÜãïõò êáß ðïéìÝíáò [áíèñþðùí ïŸé ]ïðï¡éïé äÝí [áêïëïõèï`õí ôüí ×ñéóôüí, [áëëÜ ì`áò ]õðïäåéêíýïõí {áëëïõò øåõäå¡éò óùô`çñáò. Ï[õê {åóôéí [åí {áëë~ù ï[õäåíß ]ç óùôçñßá, [áäåëöïß êáß ôÝêíá [åí Êõñß~ù [áãáðçôÜ, åœé ìÞ [åí ô~`ù ×ñéóô~`ù. Ôüóïí ]ùò {áôïìá }ïóïí êáß ]ùò ëáïß êáé ]ùò [áíèñùðüôçò ðáñÜ ôï`õ ×ñéóôï`õ ìüíïí á [ íáìÝíïìåí å[õåñãåóßáí.[ ÅÜí ìåßíùìåí ìáêñÜí á[õôï`õ, èÜ å]õñéóêþìåèá åœéò ôü óêüôïò êáß ôÞí óêéÜí ôï`õ øåýäïõò êáß ôï`õ èáíÜôïõ êáß èÜ äñÝðùìåí ôÜ äåéíÜ ô`çò ðëáíùìÝíçò åœéò ôÜò èáíáôçöüñïõò [áôñáðïýò ô`çò [áíáëçèåßáò êáß äéÜ ôï`õôï óêëçñ`ùò ôáëáéðùñïõìÝíçò [áíèñùðüôçôïò. ] Ç ÷Üñéò êáß ]ç [áëÞèåéá äéÜ [ Éçóï`õ ×ñéóôï`õ åãÝíåôï ([ Éù. 1, 17). Êáß ]ç ÷áñÜ, ]ç åœéñÞíç, ]ç óùôçñßá êáß ð`áí [áãáèüí ìüíïí ðëçóßïí á[õôï`õ å]õñßóêåôáé. Äüî~á ô~`ù [åí ]õøßóôïéò Èå~`ù, ]ï ]ïðï¡éïò ç[õäüêçóå íÜ óáñêùè~`ç äé’ ]çì`áò ]ï ÕŸéüò êáß Ëüãïò á[õôï`õ êáß íÜ ìåôáäþó~ç åœéò ç ] ì`áò ôÞí ðëÞñç á [ ëÞèåéáí á[õôï`õ êáß ôÞí óþæïõóáí ÷Üñéí á[õôï`õ. Äüîá, á®éíïò êáß å[õ÷áñéóôßá êáß ô~`ù ãåííçèÝíôé [åí ô~`ç ôáðåéí~`ç öÜôí~ç [ Éçóï`õ ×ñéóô~`ù êáß ô~`ù ] Áãß~ù á[õôï`õ Ðíåýìáôé, ôü ]ïðï¡éïí }ïëïí óõãêñïôå¡é ôüí èåóìüí ô`çò [ Åêêëçóßáò êáß óôçñßæåé êáß [åìðíÝåé ]çì`áò ôïýò ðéóôïýò. Ôá`õôá ðáôñéê`ùò õ ] ðïìéìíÞóêïíôåò, å[ ðéäáøéëåýïìåí õ ] ì¡éí ï ] ëïèýìùò ôÜò ðáôñéêÜò ]çì`ùí å[õ÷Üò êáß ôÞí Ðáôñéáñ÷éêÞí ]çì`ùí å[õëïãßáí, å[õ÷üìåíïé ]ïëïêáñäßùò }ïðùò äéÝëèçôå [åí åœéñÞí~ç êáß ÷áñ~`á ôÜò ]áãßáò ]åïñôÜò ôï`õ äùäåêáçìÝñïõ êáß ôü [åðß èýñáéò íÝïí {åôïò ô`çò ÷ñçóôüôçôïò ôï`õ Êõñßïõ. Á[õôï`õ äÝ ôï`õ [åí ÂçèëåÝì [åê ô`çò [áåéðáñèÝíïõ êáß Èåïôüêïõ Ìáñßáò ãåííçèÝíôïò êáß [åí öÜôí~ç ô`ùí [áëüãùí [áíáêëéèÝíôïò äéÜ ôÞí ]çì`ùí óùôçñßáí Êõñßïõ ]çì`ùí [ Éçóï`õ ×ñéóôï`õ ]ç ÷Üñéò êáß ôü ðëïýóéïí {åëåïò åªéçóáí ìåôÜ ðÜíôùí ]õì`ùí, [áãáðçôïß [áäåëöïß êáß ôÝêíá. [ ÁìÞí. ÖáíÜñéïí, ×ñéóôïýãåííá ~ââ´

ÿ] Ï Êùíóôáíôéíïõðüëåùò ÂÁÑÈÏËÏÌÁÉÏÓ äéÜðõñïò ðñüò Èåüí å[õ÷Ýôçò ðÜíôùí ]õì`ùí

ÂÑÕÎÅËËÅÓ. – Éäéáßôåñá óçìáíôéêü óôçí ðïëõôÜñá÷ç åðï÷Þ ìáò, ôï ìÞíõìá ðïõ Ýóôåéëáí áðü ôï Ìðá÷ñÝúí ðñïò ôçí õöÞëéï, ×ñéóôéáíïß êáé ÉóëáìéóôÝò, ïé ïðïßïé ðñáãìáôïðïßçóáí åêåß ìåôáîý 2830 Ïêôùâñßïõ ôçí 10ç ÓõíÝëåõóç ôïõ Äéáëüãïõ ÌïõóïõëìÜíùí êáé ×ñéóôéáíþí. Ðñùôåýïíôá ñüëï ó’ üëç áõôÞ ôçí êßíçóç äéåäñáìÜôéóå ï Ïéêïõìåíéêüò ÐáôñéÜñ÷çò ê. Âáñèïëïìáßïò, ôïõ ïðïßïõ ç óõíÜíôçóç êáé ïé åðáöÝò ìå ôïí ÂáóéëéÜ ôïõ Ìðá÷ñÝúí, üôáí åðéóêÝöèçêå åðßóçìá

áðü ÷þñåò ðïõ óõíõðÜñ÷ïõí ðáðéêïß êáé ìïõóïõëìÜíïé. Åêôüò áðü ôïõò åêðñïóþðïõò ôïõ Ìðá÷ñÝúí, ôç ìïõóïõëìáíéêÞ áíôéðñïóùðåßá áðïôåëïýóáí åêðñüóùðïé áðü ôá ÇíùìÝíá ÁñáâéêÜ ÅìéñÜôá, ôï âáóßëåéï ôçò ÓáïõäéêÞò Áñáâßáò, ôï ÓïõëôáíÜôï ôïõ ÏìÜí, ôï ÊïõâÝéô, ôï ÊñÜôïò ôïõ ÊáôÜñ (ôï ïðïßï óõììåôåß÷å ãéá ðñþôç öïñÜ óôïí ÄéÜëïãï Ýðåéôá áðü ó÷åôéêÞ óõìöùíßá ðïõ åðåôåý÷èç, üôáí ðñéí áðü 20 ðåñßðïõ ìÝñåò ôï åß÷å åðéóêåöèåß


ÈåñìÞ õðïäï÷Þ ôïõ åêðñïóþðïõ ôïõ Ïéêïõìåíéêïý ÐáôñéÜñ÷ç åðéóêüðïõ Ñçãßïõ ê. ÅììáíïõÞë áðü ôïí ÂáóéëéÜ Óåú÷ç ×áìÜíô Ìðéí-Éóá Áë ×áëßöá.


Óôï âáóéëéêü ðáëÜôé Ýãéíå äåêôÞ ç áíôéðñïóùðåßá ôùí ×ñéóôéáíþí êáé ÌïõóïõëìÜíùí èñçóêåõôéêþí çãåôþí.

ôç ÷þñá ôïí ÓåðôÝìâñéï ôïõ 2000, áðïôÝëåóáí ôï ðñþôï áëëÜ áðüëõôá êáèïñéóôéêü âÞìá ãéá ôçí ðñïóÝããéóç ×ñéóôéáíþí êáé ÌïõóïõëìÜíùí. Ôïõò Ïñèïäüîïõò åêðñïóþðçóáí õðü ôçí áéãßäá ôïõ Ïéêïõìåíéêïý Ðáôñéáñ÷åßïõ, éåñÜñ÷åò áðü ôï Ðáôñéáñ÷åßï Áëåîáíäñåßáò, Áíôéï÷åßáò, Éåñïóïëýìùí, Ñùóßáò, Óåñâßáò, Ñïõìáíßáò êáé Âïõëãáñßáò, êáèþò êáé áðü ôéò Åêêëçóßåò Êýðñïõ êáé Áëâáíßáò. Óõììåôåß÷áí åðßóçò êáé ôñåéò èåïëüãïé êáèçãçôÝò áðü ôï ÐáíåðéóôÞìéï Áèçíþí êáé Èåóóáëïíßêçò. Ôï Ïéêïõìåíéêü Ðáôñéáñ÷åßï åêðñïóþðçóå ï Åðßóêïðïò Ñçãßïõ ÅììáíïõÞë, äéåõèõíôÞò ôïõ ãñáöåßïõ äéáèñçóêåéáêþí êáé äéáðïëéôéóìéêþí ó÷Ýóåùí. Ôï Âáôéêáíü åêðñïóùðÞèçêå áðü ôïí Íïýíôóéï ðïõ åßíáé õðåýèõíïò ãéá ôï Ìðá÷ñÝúí, ÊïõâÝéô êáé ÕåìÝíç êáé ôïí åêðñüóùðï ôçò Áãßáò ¸äñáò óôçí ÁñáâéêÞ ×åñóüíçóï, åíþ óõììåôåß÷áí êáé ðáñÜãïíôåò ôïõ ñùìáéï-êáèïëéêéóìïý

åðéóÞìùò ï Ïéêïõìåíéêüò ÐáôñéÜñ÷çò ê.ê. Âáñèïëïìáßïò), ç Áßãõðôïò, ï Ëßâáíïò, ôï Âáóßëåéï ôçò Éïñäáíßáò, ç Óõñßá, ç Ðáëáéóôßíç, ôï Âáóßëåéï ôïõ Ìáñüêïõ, ç Ëéâýç, ôï ÉñÜí, ç ÁñáâéêÞ ÄéåèíÞò ÏñãÜíùóç, ç Ôïõñêßá, ç Éíäßá, ç Âïóíßá, ç Ñùóßá, ç Áããëßá, ç Óåñâßá, ç Âïõëãáñßá êáé ç Áëâáíßá. Ïé ôåëåõôáßåò 6 ÷þñåò áíôéðñïóùðåýèçêáí áðü ìïõöôÞäåò áíôéðñï óþðïõò ôùí ìïõóïõëìÜíùí ðïõ æïõí óå áõôÝò. Óõììåôåß÷áí, åðßóçò, óôåëÝ÷ç éóëáìéêþí Áêáäçìéþí, ìïõöôÞäåò, áíôéðñüóùðïé õðïõñãåßùí éóëáìéêþí êñáôþí, êáèþò êáé êáèçãçôÝò áíùôÜôùí éóëáìéêþí ó÷ïëþí. Ôç óõíÝëåõóç ðëáéóßùóáí, ôÝëïò, ×ñéóôéáíïß áðü ðñï÷áëêçäüíéåò åêêëçóßåò, Êüðôåò áðü Áßãõðôï êáé Éíäßá, ÁñìÝíéïé áðü ôï ÉñÜí, Óõñïúáêùâßôåò áðü ôç ÌÝóç ÁíáôïëÞ êáé ôçí ÁìåñéêÞ, êáèþò êáé åêðñüóùðïé ôçò áããëéêáíéêÞò êáé ðñïôåóôáíôéêÞò åêêëçóßáò.

 óåë. 19


ÓõíÝëåõóç Ìðá÷ñÝúí  óåë. 18


Ç ÃÝííçóç ôïõ ×ñéóôïý êÝíôñï ôçò Ðáãêüóìéáò Éóôïñßáò ÁãáëëéÜóèù ïõñáíüò, ãç åõöñáéíÝóèù. ¼ôé åôÝ÷èç åðß ãçò, ï Áìíüò ôïõ Èåïý...

ÊïéíÞ äéáêÞñõîç Óôçí êïéíÞ äéáêÞñõîç ïé óõììåôÝ÷ïíôåò åêöñÜæïõí ôç âïýëçóÞ ôïõò êáé êÜíïõí ãíùóôÝò óå ïëüêëçñç ôçí áíèñùðüôçôá ôéò äéáèÝóåéò ôïõò, ôïíßæïíôáò üôé: Èá óõíå÷ßóïõí ôïí äéÜëïãï êáé èá åíèáññýíïõí ôéò ïðïéåóäÞðïôå ðñïóðÜèåéåò ðïõ èá áðïóêïðïýí óôçí åðßôåõîç åéñçíéêÞò óõíõðÜñîåùò ôùí ëáþí. Èá óõíåñãáóôïýí þóôå íá êëåßóïõí ïé üðïéåò «ðëçãÝò» Ý÷ïõí äçìéïõñãçèåß ìåôáîý ôïõò, êáôÜ ôï ðáñåëèüí êáé åéäéêÜ óå óõãêåêñéìÝíåò ðåñéï÷Ýò ôïõ ðëáíÞôç, ìå óôü÷ï íá áðïäå÷èïýí êáé óå ôïðéêü åðßðåäï ïé ëáïß ôéò éäéáéôåñüôçôåò ðïõ ÷áñáêôçñßæïõí ôïõò åôåñüäïîïõò êáé áëëïèñÞóêïõò. Áðü êïéíïý èá åñãáóôïýí þóôå, ìå äéåèíÞ ðñïïðôéêÞ, íá ðñïÜãïõí, ôçí éäÝá ôçò åéñÞíçò åí åëåõèåñßá êáé ôçò äéêáéïóýíçò, êáèþò êáé ôçí áíÜðôõîç ôçò ðñïóôáóßáò ôùí áíèñùðßíùí äéêáéùìÜôùí, ðéÝæïíôáò ôéò áíÜ ôïí êüóìï ðïëéôéêÝò äõíÜìåéò íá åñãáóôïýí êáé áõôÝò ðñïò ôçí ßäéá êáôåýèõíóç.

çí ðáíáíèñþðéíç áãáëëßáóç ãéá ôçí ÃÝííçóç ôïõ ÓùôÞñïò ×ñéóôïý åêöñÜæåé ìå ôïí óôß÷ï áõôü ï éåñüò õìíùäüò ôçò Åêêëçóßáò ìáò. Ï ïõñáíüò êáé ç ãç êáé ïé Üããåëïé êáé ïé Üíèñùðïé ðñÝðåé íá ðáíçãõñßæïõí, äéüôé ï Èåüò «åí óáñêß åðÝöáíåí» êáé üôé êáé ôï ÓðÞëáéïí êáé ç öÜôíç êáé ïé ìÜãïé åî Áíáôïëþí, Üðáíôåò ðñïóöÝñïõí êáé ðñÝðåé íá ðñïóöÝñïõí äïîïëïãßá óôïí Êýñéï. Äéüôé Þëèåí ç «ðñïóäïêßá ôùí åèíþí», ï Éçóïýò ×ñéóôüò, ï ïðïßïò ìáò Ýóùóåí «åê ôçò äïõëåßáò ôïõ å÷èñïý», ðñïóèÝôåé ï ÉùÜííçò ï Ìïíá÷üò (8ïò áéþíáò).


ôïõ êáè. Ãåùñãßïõ ÌðåìðÞ

Ç ÃÝííçóç ôïõ Êõñßïõ áðïôåëåß ôï êÝíôñï ôçò ðáãêüóìéáò éóôïñßáò, ôçí áðáñ÷Þ ìéáò íÝáò æùÞò, ôçí åêðëÞñùóç êáé ôï ðëÞñùìá ôçò ðáíáíèñþðéíçò óùôçñßáò. ¸ôóé áéóèÜíïíôáé ôçí ÃÝííçóç ôïõ ÓùôÞñïò, ôçí æïõí êáé ôçí ðåñéãñÜöïõí ïé éåñïß ÅõáããåëéóôÝò, áëëÜ êáé ï èåßïò Áðüóôïëïò Ðáýëïò, ï ïðïßïò åðéãñáììáôéêÜ ëÝåé, «üôå äå Þëèå ôï ðëÞñùìá ôïõ ÷ñüíïõ, åîáðÝóôåéëåí ï Èåüò ôïí Õéüí áõôïý, ãåíüìåíïí åê ãõíáéêüò, ãåíüìåíïí õðü íüìïí, ßíá ôïõò õðü íüìïí åîáãïñÜóåé, ßíá ôçí õéïèåóßáí áðïëÜâùìåí» (Ãáë. 4, 4-7). íáíôéëÝêôùò, ôá ðÜíôá åß÷áí ðñïåôïéìáóèåß, ãéá ôçí Ýëåõóç ôïõ Ìåóóßá óôïí êüóìï. Ç ïëéêÞ åðéêñÜôçóç ôçò ÑùìáúêÞò åîïõóßáò êáé åéñÞíçò (Pax Romana), áëëÜ êáé ç ãåíéêÞ áíçóõ÷ßá êáé áðïãïÞôåõóç óôéò êáñäéÝò ôùí áíèñþðùí åðåóÞìáíå ðëÝïí, ôçí áíÜãêç ôçò åëåýóåùò ôïõ ÓùôÞñïò ×ñéóôïý. Ôï öëïãåñü ðíåýìá ôçò áíáìïíÞò êáé ëá÷ôÜñáò êáé ðñïóäïêßáò ôï ðåñéãñÜöåé, ùñáéüôáôá ï ÐñïöÞôçò ÇóáÀáò, ï ïðïßïò ëÝåé ôá åîÞò: «ðáéäßïí åãåííÞèç çìßí, õéüò, êáé åäüèç çìßí, ïõ ç áñ÷Þ åãåíÞèç åðß ôïõ þìïõ áõôïý, êáé êáëåßôáé ôï üíïìá áõôïý ìåãÜëçò âïõëÞò Üããåëïò, èáõìáóôüò óýìâïõëïò, Èåüò éó÷õñüò, åîïõóéáóôÞò, Üñ÷ùí åéñÞíçò, ðáôÞñ ôïõ ìÝëëïíôïò áéþíïò...» (Çó. 9, 6-7). Ï Üãéïò ÉùÜííçò ï ×ñõóüó��ïìïò óôç äåýôåñç ïìéëßá ôïõ ãéá ôçí ÃÝííçóç ôïõ ÓùôÞñïò ðåñéãñÜöåé ôá áéóèÞìáôÜ ôïõ ãéá ôçí áðïêáôÜóôáóç, èá ëÝãáìå, ôçò ó÷Ýóåùò Èåïý êáé áíèñþðïõ óôï ÓðÞëáéï ôçò ÂçèëåÝì. «ÓÞìåñá, ëïéðüí, ëýèçêáí ôá ìáêñï÷ñüíéá äåóìÜ, íôñïðéÜóôçêå ï äéÜâïëïò, ïé äáßìïíåò åêäéþ÷èçêáí, êáôáñãÞèçêå ï èÜíáôïò, áíïß÷èçêáí ïé ðýëåò ôïõ Ðáñáäåßóïõ, åîáöáíßóôçêå ç êáôÜñá, áðïìáêñýíèçêå ç áìáñôßá, ç ðëÜíç êáôáñãÞèçêå, ç áëÞèåéá åðáíÞëèå êáé äéáäüèçêå ôï êÞñõãìá ôçò åõóåâåßáò ðáíôïý. Ç âáóéëåßá ôùí ïõñáíþí ìåôáöõôåýôçêå óôç ãç, ïé Üããåëïé åðéêïéíùíïýí ìå ôïõò áíèñþðïõò êáé ïé Üíèñùðïé ÷ùñßò öüâï óõíïìéëïýí ìå ôïõò áããÝëïõò». »ÁëëÜ ãéáôß óõìâáßíïõí áõôÜ; ÅðåéäÞ êáôÝâçêå ï Èåüò óôç ãç êáé ï Üíèñùðïò áíÝâçêå óôïõò ïõñáíïýò. Ôá ðÜíôá Þëèáí óå óôåíÞ åðéêïéíùíßá. ¹ëèå ëïéðüí ï Èåüò óôç ãç, åíþ Þôáí áðïêëåéóôéêÜ óôïí ïõñáíü. Åíþ åßíáé ïëüêëçñïò óôïí ïõñáíü, åßíáé ïëüêëçñïò êáé óôç ãç. ¹ôáí Èåüò êáé Ýãéíå Üíèñùðïò, ÷ùñßò íá ðáýóåé íá åßíáé Èåüò. Åíþ Þôáí Ëüãïò ðïõ äåí åðéäÝ÷åôáé ìåôáâïëÞ, Ýëáâå áíèñþðéíç ìïñöÞ, Ýãéíå Üíèñùðïò ãéá íá êáôïéêÞóåé ìÝóá óôïõò áíèñþðïõò. Äåí Ýãéíå ëïéðüí Èåüò áñãüôåñá áëëÜ Þôáí åî’ áñ÷Þò. Ãé’ áõôü óáñêþèçêå, ãéá íá äå÷èåß ç öÜôíç Åêåßíïí ðïõ äåí ÷ùñïýóå ï ïõñáíüò. Ãé’ áõôü ôïðïèåôÞèçêå óôç öÜôíç, ãéá íá ëÜâåé ðáéäéêÞ ôñïöÞ áðü ìçôÝñá ÐáñèÝíïí. Åêåßíïò ðïõ ðñïíïåß ãéá ïëüêëçñï ôï óýìðáí. Ãé’ áõôü ï Äçìéïõñãüò ôïõ ìÝëëïíôïò áéþíïò áíÝ÷åôáé íá êñáôçèåß ùò âñÝöïò ðïõ èçëÜæåé óôçí áãêáëéÜ ôçò ÐáñèÝíïõ, ãéá íá ìðïñÝóïõí íá ôïí ðëçóéÜóïõí ïé ìÜãïé. Ãéáôß óÞìåñá Þñèáí êáé ïé ìÜãïé, áöïý áðïöÜóéóáí íá áðáñíçèïýí ôçí åîïõóßá ôïõ ÓáôáíÜ. ÓÞìåñá íéþèåé êé’ ï ïõñáíüò õðåñçöÜíåéá ìå ôï íá äåß÷íåé ìå ôï áóôÝñé ôïí Êýñéïí ôïõ...» (Ìåôáöñ. Åõáãã. Ã. Êáñáâïýíç. åêä. Áðïóôïë. Äéáêïíßáò, Íï. 2. ó. 43). Üãéïò ÉùÜííçò ï ×ñõóüóôïìïò óå ïëüêëçñç áõôÞ ôçí ðáñÜãñáöï, ìå ñùìáëåüôçôá êáé ìå áîéïèáýìáóôç óõíôïìßá êáé áêñßâåéá ðåñéãñÜöåé ôçí éóôïñéêÞ ðñáãìáôéêüôçôá, ôçí ÷ñéóôïëïãéêÞ äéäáóêáëßá, ôçí óùôçñéïëïãéêÞ åìâÝëåéá ôïõ áóýëëõðôïõ ãåãïíüôïò ôçò Èåßáò ÅíáíèñùðÞóåùò. Ïé Üãéïé ÅõáããåëéóôÝò êáé ïé Üãéïé Áðüóôïëïé êáé ïé ÐáôÝñåò ôçò Åêêëçóßáò åîÝöñáóáí ðïëëÝò öïñÝò, ôïí èáõìáóìü ôùí óôï ìÝãá ãåãïíüò ôçò ôïõ ×ñéóôïý ÃåííÞóåùò. ÅðéðëÝïí ï Üãéïò ÉùÜííçò ï ×ñõóïóôüìïò ðÜëé áðïêáëåß ôçí Èåßá ÃÝííçóç «ÐáñÜäïîïí êáé ðáñÜîåíïí ÌõóôÞñéïí». Óå ìéá Üëëç ÐáôåñéêÞ ïìéëßá, ç ïðïßá áðïäßäåôáé óôïí Üãéï ÁèáíÜóéï, ÐáôñéÜñ÷ç Áëåîáíäñåßáò ôïí 4ï áéþíá, êáé ç ïðïßá åðéóõíÜðôåé ôï üëï


Áöïý ç âßá ôñïöïäïôåß ôç âßá êáé ç êáôáðßåóç ðáñÜãåé ìßóïò, ìïõóïõëìÜíïé êáé ÷ñéóôéáíïß óõìöþíçóáí ôçí êáôáðïëÝìçóÞ ôïõò, ìÝóù äéáëüãïõ üìùò êáé ü÷é äéÜ ôçò êáôáðéÝóåùò ôùí ðéóôþí ôïõò. Èá ðñïâÜëëïõí ôéò áñ÷Ýò, áîßåò êáé ôïõò êáíüíåò ôùí äýï èñçóêåéþí, äßäïíôáò óôïõò ðéóôïýò ôçí ðñáãìáôéêÞ ôïõò åéêüíá, ôçí ïðïßá ç âßá êõñßùò Ý÷åé äéáóôñåâëþóåé, ôïíßæïíôáò ôçí áíÜãêç óõíõðÜñîåùò êáé óõíåñãáóßáò ìåôáîý üëùí ôùí ëáþí. Ìå êÜèå ôñüðï èá ðñïóðáèÞóïõí íá åîáëåßøïõí ôá åìðüäéá ôá ïðïßá åìðïäßæïõí ôïõò áíèñþðïõò íá êáôáíïÞóïõí ôç èñçóêåßá ôïõò üðùò áõôÞ ðñáãìáôéêÜ åßíáé. Èá áóêÞóïõí ðßåóç ðñïò ôéò ðïëéôéêÝò ïñãáíþóåéò ôçò êïéíùíßáò, õðÝñ ôçò ðñïóôáóßáò ôïõ áôüìïõ áðü ôéò óõãêå÷õìÝíåò ðíåõìáôéêÝò ôÜóåéò, êáèþò êáé äéÜ ôçí õðïóôÞñéîç ôùí üóùí áíèñþðùí Ý÷ïõí õðïóôåß ôéò áñíçôéêÝò åðéäñÜóåéò ôïõò. Åêôüò ôùí áíùôÝñù, êýñéï ìÝëçìÜ ôïõò èá åßíáé íá äçìéïõñãÞóïõí ôéò ðñïûðïèÝóåéò, þóôå ïëüêëçñïò ï êüóìïò íá êáôáíïÞóåé ôï ÉóëÜì êáé ôïí ×ñéóôéáíéóìü, êÜíïíôáò êïéíùíïýò, ôá ÌÌÅ, ôçí Ðáéäåßá, ôïí ðïëéôéóìü, êáé, ãåíéêþò, ÷ñçóéìïðïéþíôáò êÜèå ïñèü ôñüðï êáé ïñèÞ ìÝèïäï ç ïðïßá ðçãÜæåé ìÝóá áðü ôéò áõèåíôéêÝò ðçãÝò êÜèå èñçóêåßáò.

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ðáôåñéêü öñüíçìá ï éåñüò óõããñáöÝáò ãñÜöåé üôé ç ÃÝííçóç ôïõ ÓùôÞñïò åßíáé «ÌõóôÞñéï ðáñÜîåíïí». Äéüôé ï Þëéïò ôçò Äéêáéïóýíçò çèÝëçóå êáé áðåöÜóéóåí íá êáôÝëèåé óôç ãç, íá åéóÝëèåé óôçí ÐáñèÝíïí Ìáñßá êáé åãÝíåôï Üíèñùðïò, ÷ùñßò íá ðáýóåé íá åßíáé ôáõôï÷ñüíùò êáé Èåüò (Migne, PG. Óô. 960). ÁëëÜ ðÝñáí ôïõ ãíçóßïõ èáõìáóìïý, ôïí ïðïßïí ïé ÐáôÝñåò ôçò Åêêëçóßáò áéóèÜíïíôáé ãéá ôçí Èåßá ÃÝííçóç, åãíþñéæáí êÜëëéóôá üôé þöåéëáí íá ôçí ðåñéãñÜøïõí ìå áêñßâåéá, óïâáñüôçôá, óõíÝðåéá êáé ïñèüôçôá. Üãéïò ÁèáíÜóéïò óôçí ðñáãìáôåßá ôïõ ðåñß ôçò Óõíüäïõ ôçò Íßêáéáò ôï 325, ìáò äéÝóùóå ïëüêëçñï ôï Óýìâïëï ôçò áãßáò êáé ìåãÜëçò êáé ÏéêïõìåíéêÞò áõôÞò Óõíüäïõ, ôï ïðïßï áðïôåëåß áñéóôïýñãçìá óáöÞíåéáò êáé ðßóôåùò êáé èåßáò åìðíåýóåùò. Ç ðáñÜãñáöïò ãéá ôïí Õéüí êáé ôçí ãÝííçóç áõôïý Ý÷åé ùò åîÞò óå ìåôÜöñáóç: «...Êáé åéò ¸íá Êýñéïí Éçóïýí ×ñéóôüí, ôïí Õéüí ôïõ Èåïý, ï ïðïßïò åãåííÞèç ìïíïãåíÞò åê ôïõ Ðáôñüò, äçëáäÞ åê ôçò ïõóßáò ôïõ Ðáôñüò. Èåüí åê Èåïý, Öùò åê Öùôüò, Èåüí áëçèéíüí åê Èåïý áëçèéíïý, ï ïðïßïò åãåííÞèç êáé äåí åäçìéïõñãÞèç, åßíáé ïìïïýóéïò ðñïò ôïí ÐáôÝñá, äé’ áõôïý äå ôïõ Õéïý Ýãéíáí üëá, êáé ôá ïõñÜíéá êáé ôá åðßãåéá. Áõôüò ï çìÜò ôïõò áíèñþðïõò êáé äéÜ ôçí óùôçñßáí ìáò êáôÞëèåí êáé åóáñêþèç, åíçíèñþðçóåí, Ýðáèå êáé áíåóôÞèç ôçí ôñßôç çìÝñáí, áíÞëèåí åéò ôïõò ïõñáíïýò êáé èá êñßíåé æþíôáò êáé íåêñïýò...». Âåâáßùò óôçí ´ ÏéêïõìåíéêÞ Óýíïäï óôçí Êùíóôáíôéíïýðïëç ôï 381, ôï õðÝñï÷ï áõôü óýìâïëï õðÝóôç ïñéóìÝíåò áëëáãÝò êáé ðñïóèÝóåéò êáé åßíáé áõôü ôï ïðïßï ðéóôåýïõìå êáé äéáêçñýôôïõìå óôéò åêêëçóßåò ìáò, êáôÜ ôéò éåñÝò ìáò áêïëïõèßåò, óõíå÷þò, ìå ôéò êáñäéÝò ìáò öëåãüìåíåò êáé ìå ôçí óêÝøç ìáò êáôáöþôéóôç êáé ôçí øõ÷Þ ìáò ãåìÜôç áãáëëßáóç, êáé ôçí ÷åßñáí èõìéÜæïõóá, äéüôé ï Êýñéïò åßíáé ç æùÞ ìáò, ç ßäéá ìáò ç áíáðíïÞ. «Ôïí ×ñéóôüí áåß áíáðíÝåôå» ëÝãåé ï Üãéïò Áíôþíéïò (Âßïò áãßïõ Áíôùíßïõ, êåö. 91) óå üëïõò ïé ïðïßïé èÝëïõí íá æïõí ôçí êáôÜ ×ñéóôüí æùÞ. Ï Üãéïò Óõìåþí ï íÝïò Èåïëüãïò ôïí 11ï áéþíá áðïäßäåé ùñáéüôáôá êáé åêöñáóôéêÜ ïíüìáôá ãéá ôïí Éçóïý ×ñéóôü. Ï ×ñéóôüò ãñÜöåé åßíáé ãíþóç, óïößá, ëüãïò. Öùò, ëÜìøç, ïìïéüôçôá, èåùñßá êáé åðßãíùóç. Êáé ðùò èá ðëçóéÜóïõìå êáé èá æÞóïõìå ôïí ×ñéóôü ùò áëçèéíïß ×ñéóôéáíïß; Ï Üãéïò Óõìåþí Ý÷åé ôçí áðÜíôçóç. Ìå ôçí ìåôÜíïéá, ôçí ôáðåßíùóç, åñãáóßá ôùí åíôïëþí ôïõ êáé äÜêñõá (Çè. Ëüãïé, 3, 310-312 êáé 9, 463-482). çí ðßóôç êáé áöïóßùóç ôçò Åêêëçóßáò óôïí ÃåííçèÝíôá ×ñéóôü ôçí åêöñÜæåé áêüìç åðéôõ÷Ýóôáôá ï åõëáâÞò Åðßóêïðïò Äéïêëåßáò ÊÜëëéóôïò, üôáí ãñÜöåé «üôé ï ×ñéóôüò åßíáé ÈåÜíèñùðïò, Èåüò êáé Üíèñùðïò, åí ôù áõôþ, Ýíá ìå ôïí ÐáôÝñá Èåüí, êáé êáè’ üëá Ýíá ìå åìÜò. ÁõôÞ ç óùôçñéïëïãéêÞ ðáñáäïîüôçò óõíéóôÜ ôçí êáñäéÜ ôçò ×ñéóôéáíéêÞò ìáò ðßóôåùò» (Áëçèþò Èåüò êáé áëçèþò Üíèñùðïò, åí 2000 ÌåôÜ, åêä. Áêñßôá, ó. 86). Êáé óõìðëçñþíåé ï ìáêáñéóôüò êáé ëáìðñüò Ìçôñïðïëßôçò Ñåèýìíçò êáé ÁõëïðïôÜìïõ êõñüò Ôßôïò, «Ï Ìüíïò ÖéëÜíèñùðïò ãåííÜôáé Üíèñùðïò. Êáé ðáñáìÝíåé Ýêôïôå ôçò éóôïñßáò ï Éçóïýò, ï ×ñéóôüò ôçò ðßóôåùò. Ï ÈåÜíèñùðïò. Ï ËõôñùôÞò ôïõ ãÝíïõò ôùí áíèñþðùí». Êáé óõíå÷ßæåé: «×ñéóôïðïéåßôáé óÞìåñïí ï ÷ñüíïò êáé ï ÷þñïò. Ï Ü÷ñïíïò êáé á÷þñçôïò ËõôñùôÞò äéáðëþíåôáé óôï äüãìá ôçò ðáíáãÜðçò Ôïõ, ôçí íõêôáõãßá ôùí ×ñéóôïõãÝííùí êáé åíáãêáëßæåôáé ôï óýìðáí...» (×ñéóôïý Åõùäßá, ó. 248). Åßìáóôå Ýôïéìïé åöÝôïò ôá ×ñéóôïýãåííá íá ãßíïõìå «óýóóùìïé» ìå ôïí ×ñéóôü; (Åöåó. 3. 6). Åßìáóôå Ýôïéìïé íá ïìïëïãÞóïõìå êáé óÞìåñá êáé áýñéï êáé ðÜíôïôå ôï ÐáíÜãéï üíïìÜ Ôïõ êáé íá ãßíùìåí «÷ñéóôïöüñïé» êáé «èåïöüñïé»; Åßìáóôå Ýôïéìïé íá äéáêçñýîïõìå ìáæß ìå ôïí ìïíá÷ü ÌÜîéìï ôïõ Áãßïõ ¼ñïõò (Éçóïýò ×ñéóôüò ï Êýñéïò ìáò, ó. 69), üôé ï Éçóïýò ×ñéóôüò åßíáé ç ìïíáäéêÞ óùôçñßá ôçò áíèñùðüôçôïò, åßíáé ï Êýñéïò ôçò Åêêëçóßáò, ï äßêáéïò, êáñäéïãíþóôçò êáé áíáëëïßùôïò Êýñéïò êáé ÊñéôÞò ôïõ êüóìïõ; Èá ìðïñÝóïõìå åðÜîéá íá ðëçóéÜóïõìå ôçí öÜôíç ôïõ íåïãåííçèÝíôïò ×ñéóôïý, êáé íá ãïíáôßóïõìå ìáæß ìå ôïõò åî ÁíáôïëÞò ìÜãïõò, ãéá íá ðñïóöÝñïõìå êáé åìåßò ôá äþñá ôçò êáñäéÜò ìáò, ôçí åõùäßá ôçò øõ÷Þò ìáò. Ôüôå ç åéñÞíç ôùí áããÝëùí, ôï Üóôñï ôïõ ïõñáíïý, ç ÷áñÜ ôïõ èåßïõ âñÝöïõò êáé ôçò Ðáíáãßáò ìçôñüò Ôïõ, èá êáôáóôïýí âßùìÜ ìáò êáé êáèçìåñéíÞ åìðåéñßá ìáò.



Ï ê. Ãåþñãéïò Ó. ÌðåìðÞò åßíáé êáèçãçôÞò Ðáôñïëïãßáò, óôçí É. ÈåïëïãéêÞ Ó÷ïëÞ ôïõ Ôéìßïõ Óôáõñïý.




m i s s imoi ns s i o n s OCMC to Field Largest Number of Short-Term Teams ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. – Orthodox Christian Mission Center announces the largest number of its scheduled short-term mission teams ever. Ten mission teams are planned for the summer of 2003, a 25 percent increase over last year. Mission teams will teach, build, baptize, nurture and heal in local Orthodox communities around the world. Groups of two to 24 volunteers will donate their time, money and energy to witness the Orthodox Christian faith through a variety of activities. The trips will last from one to three weeks and will take place between mid-July and early October. Projects range from building a church in Ghana, nurturing infants in Romania, caring for orphaned children in Guatemala and offering medical assistance in Uganda. While all team volunteers will be witnessing the faith, some teams will focus primarily on teaching. Teaching teams to Alaska, India and Ghana will offer catechism classes, seminars, retreats and bible studies and will visit remote villages. All short-term mission teams consist of Orthodox Christian volunteers following in the saints’ footsteps ready and willing to share their faith. They are teachers, clergy, seminarians, youth workers, contractors, healthcare professionals, students and anyone willing to offer their skills and love to serve God by serving on a mission team in 2003.

2003 destinations Alaska – This was part of North America to receive the fullness of the Gospel in the Holy Orthodox faith. Today, the Alaskan Church and its faithful face many hardships. Three volunteer teaching teams of 10 members each will travel to remote villages in Alaska from Aug. 4-14. Teams will focus on the Yukon, Kodiak Island, and Dilligham/Newhalen areas. Additionally, a six-person teaching team will go to Fairbanks 13 to 21 September 13-21 to work with university students. Ghana – At the request of Bishop Panteleimon, at least two teams will go to this West African nation. This is an opportunity to help fellow Christians where the Orthodox Church is still in its early stages of growth. There are two kinds of teams evangelism and construction — each composed of 8 to 10 volunteers. An eight-member evangelism team will go to villages Aug. 1-22, where Orthodoxy has already been established and to areas where the faith has not yet taken hold. The construction team, consisting of 10 persons, will work closely with local volunteers July 1-22to build a church and assist in local evangelistic efforts. Guatemala – The Hogar Rafael Ayau Orphanage, the only Orthodox orphanage in this Central American country, welcomes orphans and lost, abandoned and battered children from the streets of Guatemala City.

Key Decisions Made at OCMC Board Meeting ST. AUGUSTINE (OCMC) – Thirty trustees of the Orthodox Christian Mission Center representing all SCOBA jurisdictions gathered at St. Vladimir’s Seminary in Crestwood, N.Y. in November for the bi-annual OCMC board meeting. Board members reviewed and planned all 2003 mission projects and programs, including the approval of five new missionaries and 11 proposed mission teams. The trustees also reviewed budgets for philanthropic program grants for

2003 under the AGAPE canister program, including a weekly feeding program in India and of a children’s home in Indonesia. Budgets for an increased and expanded support of indigenous clergy through OCMC’s Support-A-Mission-Priest (SAMP) program were also confirmed. In addition, time was spent reflecting on board development and on how best to use the Board’s collective skills and experiences.

Mission Team Chicago Raises $9,000 at Fr. Scoulas Memorial GLENVIEW, Ill. — Mission Team Chicago, a local group supporting Orthodox missions, honored Fr. George Scoulas of blessed memory and raised $9,000 Oct. 13 at Sts. Peter and Paul Church. Fr. Scoulas had served the parish for many years. The luncheon event officially launched the Fr. George Scoulas Mission Team Endowment Fund that will provide an annual scholarship to an Orthodox seminarian to go on a mission trip. The day also marked Fr George’s twoyear memorial, commemorated during the Divine Liturgy. Afterwards, 200 parishioners joined Presbytera Mary Scoulas and family members for the program. Fr. Angelo Artemas, pastor of Sts. Peter and Paul, was announced as Team Chicago’s spiritual father, succeeding Fr. Milton Gianulis who also attended the lunch. Under the direction of the Orthodox Christian Mission Center and with the blessings of Metropolitan Iakovos, Team Chicago ( has set a $100,000 goal to fund the endowment. To date, Team Chicago has raised almost $44,000. Seminarians undertaking these short-

term mission trips will teach local Orthodox communities and strengthen their missions knowledge and pastoral skills in preparation for their future ministries. A traveling icon of Christ’s Great Commission written in memory of Fr. George, was at Sts. Peter and Paul and will accompany Team Chicago for its presentations on missions to Orthodox parishes of the diocese and fund-raising efforts. As Team Chicago’s first spiritual father, Fr. George offered guidance and resources to help the group develop its vision, objectives and activities, including the annual mission benefit, which has supported projects across the world for the last six years. The endowment fulfills two goals two of Fr. George’s goals in his more than 40-year ministry: to support Holy Cross School of Theology and other Orthodox seminaries; and to increase awareness of Orthodoxy’s historic role in evangelizing and the Church’s collective responsibility toward fulfilling that role today. To pledge support to the endowment, checks may be sent to: OCMC, P.O. Box 4319, St. Augustine, Fla., 32085-4319. Write “Fr. George Scoulas Endowment” in the check memo line.

The 24-member mission team will be in the country July 12 to Aug. 2. Team members will assist in classroom activities and teach the children by sharing the richness of the faith. Romania – Eight volunteers are needed to assist long-term missionaries Craig and Victoria Goodwin at the newly established Protection of the Theotokos Infant and Maternal Center. The center helps to prevent child abandonment and to nurture the bond between mother and child (infants 0-24 months) discouraging abortion and abandonment while increasing strong family ties for infants. This team will travel Aug. 7-21. Uganda – Health care professionals have always been an integral part of the holistic mission of the Orthodox Church. This mission team will consist of physicians, physicians’ assistants, and nurses (RN and LPN). There is also need for a surgeon and a dentist at the main hospital, and a surgeon for basic medicine in some villages. A pharmacist would be useful managing the medications. Volunteers will treat mostly tropical

diseases, including malaria, leprosy, TB, and secondary infections from AIDS, general aches, pains and infections. Medical volunteers will work in pairs. Due to heavy schedules of most health care professionals a timetable will be developed to allow for rotating replacement during a six-week period from July 13 to Aug. 23. India — This unique team will travel in the footsteps of the Apostle Thomas who first brought the Gospel message to India. Due to local conditions and the nature of this trip, it is limited to members of the clergy who will serve as teachers and catechists alongside local clergy that provide the sacraments. The region of India is Calcutta/Bengal, and the trip is Sept. 8 to Oct. 1. For more information contact The Orthodox Christian Mission Center at or (904) 829-5132 or PO Box 4319, St. Augustine, FL, 32085. Team applications are on line at teams/index or upon request by email or regular mail. Please indicate in requests the preference to receive the application by e-mail or regular mail.

Bishop of Ghana Calls for Help During OCMC Visit ST. AUGUSTINE – Bishop Panteleimon, bishop of the African nation of Ghana, on a recent visit to the Orthodox Christian Mission Center and asked that Orthodox Christians remember the struggling Church in Ghana and West Africa. “Without the help of funds from American Orthodox people through OCMC and others, the Orthodox Church in Ghana would almost have to close its doors. I say almost, because we always have faith in God, but we have no income and it is God working through the generosity of Orthodox Christians that makes our Church possible,” His Grace said. His presentation to OCMC staff included slides of baptisms, newly built churches, catechism classes and medical outreach. His visit to the Mission Center in Florida completed his three week speaking tour on the current state of Orthodoxy and missionary activity in his diocese in West Africa which includes Ghana, the Ivory Coast, Liberia, Guinea, Sierra Leone, Guinea Bissau, Gambia, Senegal, Mali and Burkina Faso. In 1982, after three years of catechesis, the Orthodox Church in Ghana was born when 1,975 people desiring to enter canonical Orthodoxy were baptized. In January 2000, Bishop Panteleimon, arrived in Ghana and began his missionary work in West Africa. Today the Church has grown to more than 4,000 people, but there remains a great shortage of priests. There are only 17 active priests for more than 50 communities, which is a ratio of at least three communities per priest. Bishop Panteleimon spoke Christ’s words from the Gospel of Matthew and Luke when he said, “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few,” and “to pray the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into His Harvest field.” He pleaded for the OCMC to send long-term missionaries and short-term teams to continue to help build up the Orthodox Church in his diocese. In his presentation, the bishop also expressed a need for priests, teachers, medical personnel and anyone who loves the Lord to serve the growing Orthodox

Church in Ghana and the other nine countries in his diocese. The Orthodox Christian Mission Center has sent three short-term mission teams to Ghana since 1989 and is recruiting people to send two more teams in 2003. A teaching team and a construction team to Ghana will be two of 11 OCMC short-term mission teams sent out next summer. For more information on how to become a long-term missionary or a short-term mission team membercontact the Orthodox Christian Mission Center by e-mail:, by telephone: (904) 829-5132, by fax: (904) 829-1635 or by mail: OCMC, PO Box 4319, St. Augustine, FL 32085-4319.

HOLY SCRIPTURE READINGS JANUARY . . . . . . . . 1 W ..... Col. 2:8-12; Lk. 2:20-21, 40-52 2 Th ................ Heb. 5:4-10; Jn. 3:1-15 3 F ............... Ga. 5:22-6:2; Lk. 6:17-23 4 S ............... 1 Tim. 3:13-4:5; Mt. 3:1-6 5 SUN ............. 2 Tim. 4:5-8; Mk. 1:1-8 6 M ... Titus 2:11-14, 3:4-7; Mt. 3:13-15 7 T ................. Acts 19:1-8; Jn. 1:29-34 8 W .............. Rom. 6:3-11; Jn. 3:23-33 9 Th. ............ 2 Tim. 2:1-10; Mk. 1:9-15 10 F ........... Acts 13:13-24; Lk. 3:19-22 11 S .............. Heb. 13:7-16; Mt. 4:1-11 12 SUN ......... Eph. 4:7-13; Mt. 4:12-17 13 M .............. Eph. 6:10-17; Lk. 20:1-8 14 T ......... 1 Peter 3:10-21 or Hebrews 10:32-38; Lk. 4:1-15 15 W ......... Gal. 5:22-6:2; Lk. 12:32-40 16 Th ......... Acts 12:1-11; Jn. 21:14-25 17 F .......... Heb. 13:17-21; Lk. 6:17-23 18 S ............ Heb. 13:7-16; Mt. 5:14-19 19 SUN ........ Col. 3:4-11; Lk. 17:12-19 20 M ........... 2 Cor. 4:6-15; Lk. 6:17-23 21 T ............. Phil. 1:12-20; Lk. 12:8-12 22 W2 Tim. 1:3-9; Mt. 10:32-33; 37-38, 19:27-30 23 Th ......... Phil. 1:12-30; Mk. 2:23-3:5 24 F ................ Gal. 5:22-6:2; Mt. 9:1-8 25 S ........... Heb. 7:26-8:2; Jn. 10:9-16 26 SUN .. 1 Tim. 1:15-17; Lk. 18:35-43 27 M .......... Heb. 7:26-8:2; Jn. 10:9-16 28 T ................ Gal. 5:22-6:2; Mk. 6:1-7 29 W ........ Heb. 10:32-38; Mk. 9:33-41 30 Th. ......... Heb. 13:7-16; Mt. 5:14-19 31 F ........ I Cor. 12:27-13:8; Mt. 10:5-8





The Standing Conference of the Canonical Orthodox Bishops in the Americas

Department of Greek Education The Archdiocesan Department of Greek Education’s major objective has been to introduce the parochial day and afternoon school students to the spiritual, moral, and cultural values of the Greek Orthodox Church by offering a comprehensive program of studies that includes instruction in modern Greek, the Greek Orthodox faith, and Greece’s history and cultural heritage. With a curriculum that offers a better understanding and appreciation of the religious and cultural heritage of the Church, the Archdiocesan parochial schools contribute greatly to the development of well-informed and progressive members of the Church in America. The Department plays a vital role in determining the appropriateness of the educational material to be taught to the students of the parochial schools, be it textbooks, or teacher resource books, or books for self-study. Thus, in its effort to assist and facilitate teachers and parents in selecting the best and most suitable materials, the Department of Education buys and reviews carefully various books and other materials, sold by independent Greek publishers, for their appropriateness of content and level of knowledge of modern Greek. Books are then categorized accordingly. In addition, the Department of Education provides the parochial schools with certificates of promotion and diplomas for their students. Certificates of promotion are given to students who are promoted from one grade to the next. Diplomas are given to the students who graduate after having

completed a full course of Greek studies. Both certificates and diplomas are signed by Archbishop Demetrios. Furthermore, the Archdiocesan Department of Education provides parochial schools with The Three Hierarchs Award of Excellence, which is bestowed to a student of the graduating class who has achieved excellence in Greek Studies. The award bears the Archbishop’s signature and is usually sent to the schools, upon request, prior to graduation. Books and materials, including the certificates of promotion and diplomas, are listed in the catalog of the education department. The catalog also lists a number of Web sites and links where one can locate other sources of information on the teaching of the Greek language. For information on the availability of books and to request a copy of this Catalog, please contact the Archdiocesan Department of Education at (212) 774-0554, or visit the department’s Web page

Special note The Department of Education, under a grant from the Niarchos Foundation, a charitable organization, is currently developing a curriculum for kindergarten. Following the mandates of New York State Education Department for the education of pre-school children, this will be a bilingual edition (Greek & English) and will include Greek cultural elements, in addition to teaching Modern Greek to young learners. The kindergarten curriculum will be available and offered gratis to teachers in the spring of 2003.

Orthodox Observer

SCOBA COMMITTEE The SCOBA Washington Office Committee held its first meeting Nov. 18 at Archdiocese offices, chaired by Metropolitan Christopher from the Serbian Orthodox Church in the U.S. and Canada. The meeting of representatives from the Standing Conference of the Canonical Orthodox Bishops in the Americas, discussed opening a full-time office in the nation’s capital. Also present from the Serbian Orthodox Church Office of External Affairs was Fr Irinej Dobrijevic, executive director; Bishop Dimitrios of Xanthos, who headed the SCOBA delegation; Charles Ajalat of the Antiochian Orthodox Archdiocese, Fr. David Brum of the Orthodox Church in America, Fr. Frank Estocin of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church in the USA, and Fr. Gregory Havrilak, associate general secretary of SCOBA.

OCAMPR Conference on Holy Tradition/Modern Science BROOKLINE, Mass. — The 2002 annual conference of the Orthodox Christian Association of Medicine, Psychology and Religion (OCAMPR) on Holy Tradition/Modern Science took place Nov. 1-2 at Hellenic College/Holy Cross School of Theology. On Friday evening, Nov. 1, Dr. Paul Kymissis of New York Medical College discussed how modern developments in medicine, psychopharmacology, brain research, and psychotherapy conflict with, and contribute to healing and formation in Orthodox Christian life. He also addressed sacramental applications. From the field of medicine, Dr. Jeff Rediger, a psychiatrist at Harvard Medical School and McLean Hospital discussed problems from clinical situations showing the interdisciplinary interface. Dee Jaquet (M. Div.) of Regis University responded from a pastoral psychological perspective. Representing the field of theology was Fr. Stephen Plumlee (Ph.D., LMFT). His topic was “Depression: medical/psychological illness or demonic attack?” He addressed how to best integrate patristic teaching on depression with modern advances in understanding and treatment of mood disorders and avoid spiritualizing, medicalizing or secularizing the human? On Nov. 2, the topic “Challenges of Integrating the Ascetical Nature of Orthodox Spirituality into Modern Life” was introduced by Jamie Moran (Ph.D.), University of Surrey, Roehampton, England. He led the discussion concerning what possibilities Orthodox Christians

have to live in the world with the quality of intention and attention that monks do in abandoning the world, how to remain attentive to their spiritual selves and integrate the fruits of Orthodoxy in personal and professional lives? Dr. John Demakis’ response concerned the role of medicine, nutrition, meditation, bodywork and exercise in synergy with Orthodox teaching in avoiding compassion fatigue, achieving optimal health, and supporting the movement toward theosis. He addressed these considerations in view of the early Byzantine history of Church as hospital. Fr. George Morelli (Ph.D.), will address how resources of patristic ascetical writings on hesycasm and spiritual warfare are met in conjunction with of modern advances in psychological understanding to maintain a high quality spiritual life in the conditions of ordinary personal and professional life. Dr. Philip Mamalakis, (Ph.D., LMFT), discussed how to employ resources of psychology in light of Orthodox Patristic ascetical writings on spiritual warfare, to faithfully develop and grow spiritually in marriage. As OCAMPR has not functioned professionally for several years, this National OCAMPR conference provided an opportunity for those interested in its objectives to re-establish the organizational direction. For more information, write to the national office at: OCAMPR, PO Box 958, Cambridge, MA 02238 or telephone (617) 850-1289 and speak with Michael Kallas, regional coordinator.



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DIOCESE OF CHICAGO Orthodox Christian Synergy Holds 8th Annual Symposium CICERO,Ill–Orthodox Christian Synergy held its eighth annual symposium Oct. 19 at St. George Antiochian Orthodox Church on the subject “Evil in Our World Today.” Among those attending was Metropolitan Iakovos of Krinis, presiding hierarch of the Diocese of Chicago. Speakers included two noted Orthodox – The Very Rev. Thomas Hopko, retired dean of St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary in Crestwood, N.Y., and the Rev. Dr. John Chryssavgis, professor of theology at Holy Cross School of Theology and Department of Religious Studies chairman at Hellenic College. Fr. Constantine Botsis, pastor of St. Haralambos Church in Niles and clergy chairman of Orthodox Christian Synergy, welcomed the gathering and offered the morning prayer. Robert Easton, Synergy president introduced Fr. Hopko, the first speaker. Fr. Hopko spoke on God and evil and presented his understanding of God’s relation to evil according to Christian scripture and tradition. He explained that “God is good and in God is no evil at all…God is beyond good and evil…Evil has no substantial existence…The origin of evil is creaturely choice…God loves evildoers…Human beings are a complex of good and evil …God uses evil for good…Evil in god’s name is the greatest evil…God chastens evildoers for salvation; he does not punish forever…Victims of evil are closer to God…God’s redemption in Christ must be accepted…Evil will be separated from good at the end…God’s judgment of evil is His mercy on all…God will be all and in all through Christ.”

Metropolitan Iakovos (center) with symposium participants.

Fr. Hopko concluded by stating, “We must insist once more that God is not evil and does not create evil. Evil comes from creatures and must inevitably exist as a perversion of good in a human world…The ways of the Lord Who sends evils upon whom He wills so that they might repent before His terrible justice and majestic mercy, are beyond comprehension and questioning. (Isaiah 55:8-9) When believers in the Christian God witness earthquake, flood, fire, sword, invasion by enemies and evils of every kind, they believe that God is visiting them for their instruction, chastening, repentance and everlasting salvation. “The biblical psalms proclaim the truth


about God and evil in this present age in the most perfect way. They declare the Lord’s sovereign dominion over good and evil, and His steadfast love for those who come to adore His majesty and accept His mercy.” Synergy Vice President Robert Yurschak introduced Fr. Chryssavgis who spoke on “Facing Evil, Gaining Life: The Presence of Evil in our Personal Lives. He said that every spiritual journey must go through suffering and pain and that, where evil is present, God is also present. – Love will conquer evil. “Evil and the devil are cursed because they cannot love,” he said. “Suffering through evil is the beginning of a new life.” Father John suggested that the best prayer comes from the Psalms – “Oh Lord, make haste to help me.” Fr. Chryssavgis stressed three sacramental means by which the Church deals with evil: BAPTISM in CHRIST, which is a birthright in Christ and the beginning of personal responsibility before evil, the way out of darkness into life. He stressed that the beginning of the baptismal service includes exorcisms – the reality of evil in the world. CONFESSION, the knowledge of

healing, of growing. “Passions are wounds – those deep marks in our hearts that require healing.” Fr. John emphasized. “We need to comprehend, to embrace our passions because they indicate that we are doing something wrong. Passions are habits that distort our reality to the way we see our world. It’s up to us to see whether these passions are put to good use or bad. We don’t eradicate them, we direct them.” COMMUNION, which gives spiritual direction. “We are dependent upon one another. Sharing in the Church is better than trying to do it alone,” Fr. John stated. He added, “We long to be forgiven and must learn to forgive. We are healed when we recognize our incompleteness and the Church is the only place where we are accepted with all our incompleteness - where we can be in the same space with one another. We should not be afraid of the evil in our heart. It is our reality,” Fr. John said. “Let’s make room to learn to understand it. We rise with our wounds. No part of our self is unwanted. God’s love is stronger than any evil.” Attendees also participated in a question-and-answer session. The Synergy bookstore offered books written by the speakers, who visited with attendees and signed books. SYNERGY committee member, Jolynn Ruggerio spoke on “What is SYNERGY?” and described some of the activities of the group. Orthodox Christian Synergy is comprised of clergy and lay representatives of Chicago area Orthodox Christian parishes and strives to promote awareness of Orthodox Christianity to the public at large. Among its activities are the sponsorship and support of the annual Pan Orthodox Thanksgiving Eve service; Sunday of Orthodoxy pan Orthodox vespers; pan Orthodox Akathist service; Department of Children and Family Services Christmas gift program; weekly religion ads in the Sun Times and Tribune newspapers; Orthodox Christians for Life and other pan Orthodox programs in addition to its annual symposium. Synergy invites members in good standing at area Orthodox Christian parishes to join its mission. For more information call 312-944-0801.

Chicago Church Community Visits St. Photios Shrine

METROPOLITAN IAKOVOS dedicates new center

WHEELING, Ill. – Metropolitan Iakovos of Krinis, presiding hierarch of the Diocese of Chicago, recently dedicated the Greek American Rehabilitation and Nursing Center, a four-story, 204-bed facility established in 1996-97 by the Greek American Nursing Home Committee. The committee labored for 17 years to provide a place where elderly and handicapped Greek Americans can spend their golden years and practice their Greek Orthodox faith, enjoy Mediterra-

nean cuisine and Greek culture while receiving quality care. The Metropolitan held a Hierarchal Divine Liturgy and blessing of the loaves service at the center’s chapel dedicated to the Panaghia on Nov. 21, assisted by eight priests and with the participation of the St. John Damascene Chantors League. The center provides care to residents and has both private and semi-private rooms. Private pay, long-term care insurance, Medicaid and Medicare residents are accepted.

ST. AUGUSTINE - Members of St. Demetrios Church recently visited the St. Photios Greek Orthodox National Shrine in St. Augustine. Fr. Apostolos Georgiafentis along with 48 parishioners from St. Demetrios Church are traveling on a “Spiritual Journey” through the southeastern and southwestern United States visiting various Orthodox institutions and monasteries. Their travels included a small pilgrimage to the St. Photios National Shrine on Oct. 30. Shrine Associate Director Andrew Lekos, welcomed the community and shared the history of the Shrine and its establishment as a memorial that celebrates the historic occasion when the first colony of 300 Hellenes landed in St. Augustine as part of the New Smyrna colony in 1768. “This small group of Greeks first gathered at the then called Avero House to worship. This site is now the St. Photios

National Shrine, the oldest existing edifice where Greek Orthodox Christians gathered for prayer and fellowship in the New World,” Mr. Lekos said. The St. Demetrios members viewed the exhibit, The New Smyrna Colony: A Mediterranean Odyssey to East Florida. In the St. Photios Chapel, candles were lit by the faithful, and Shrine chaplain Rev. Nikitas Theodosion offered a Paraklesis service for the group. The group also submitted names for memorials. According to group coordinator, Angeline Eliakopoulos, “It is important for communities to visit and pay tribute or our predecessors.” Fr. Apostolos stated that, “The visit of the St. Demetrios Church group is very important for this institution of the Archdiocese” and the community is honored to have the name St. Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church - Chicago, be included on the Wall of Tribute at the shrine.



ECUMENICAL Orthodox, Catholic Theologians Meet in Canada The North American OrthodoxCatholic Theological Consultation recently met for the first time in Canada, convening at St. Paul University in Ottawa, Ontario, Oct. 31-Nov. 2, under the auspices of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB). This 63rd meeting of the Consultation was co-chaired by Metropolitan Maximos, presiding hierarch of the Pittsburgh Diocese and Archbishop Daniel Pilarczyk of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Cincinnati. The main focus of this meeting was a continued examination of the filioque question. The original version of the Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed that dates from the 4th century and still used by the Orthodox states the Holy Spirit “proceeds from the Father.” The word filioque (“and from the Son”) was later added to the Latin version of this Creed used in the West, so the phrase would read that the Holy Spirit “proceeds from the Father and the Son.” This modification appeared in some areas of Western Europe as early as the 5th century but was accepted in Rome only in the 11th century. This change in the wording and the underlying variations in understanding the origin and procession of the Holy Spirit within the Trinity have long been considered a church-dividing issue between our two communions. The Consultation has been studying this question since 1999 in the hope of eventually releasing an agreed statement. The Consultation members also discussed major events in the lives of the two C hurches that had taken place since the last meeting, including the meeting of U.S. Catholic Bishops in Dallas in June, the visit of Romanian Patriarch Teoctist to Rome, autonomy for the Antiochian Archdiocese, the Israeli government’s non-recognition of Patriarch Irinaios of Jerusalem, the situation of the Catholic Church in Russia and relations between the Catholic Church and the Moscow Patriarchate, Orthodox participation in the World Council of Churches, the Clergy/ Laity Congress of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese and the proposed new Archdiocesan Charter, developments in

SCOBA, the document Reflections on Covenant and Mission produced by the dialogue between the USCCB and the National Council of Synagogues, the election and enthronement of Metropolitan Herman of the OCA, the Joint Declaration on Environmental Ethics signed by the Pope and Ecumenical Patriarch, the visit of a Constantinopolitan delegation to Rome for the feast of Sts. Peter and Paul last June, the enthronement of a new archbishop of the Romanian Orthodox Missionary Archdiocese in America and Canada, the October meeting of the Joint Committee of Orthodox and Catholic Bishops, and the Byzantine Spirituality Conference held in Pittsburgh on Oct. 5. Some membership changes were also announced. Metropolitan Maximos told the members that Professor Lewis Patsavos had submitted his resignation because of his retirement. The next meeting of the Consultation is scheduled to take place from May 27-29, 2003, at St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary in Crestwood, N.Y. The North American OrthodoxCatholic Theological Consultation has been meeting semiannually since it was founded in 1965 under the auspices of the Bishops’ Committee for Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and the Standing Conference of Canonical Orthodox Bishops in the Americas (SCOBA). The Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops officially joined the Consultation as a sponsor in 1997. The Consultation works in tandem with the Joint Committee of Orthodox and Catholic Bishops that has met annually since 1981. In addition to the two co-chairmen, the Orthodox members of the Consultation include Fr. Thomas FitzGerald (secretary), Archbishop Peter of New York, Rev. Nicholas Apostola, Professor Susan Ashbrook Harvey, Fr. Alkiviadis Calivas, Fr. James Dutko, Professor John Erickson, Fr. Alexander Golitzin, Fr. Emmanuel Gratsias, Dr. Robert Haddad, Fr. Paul Schnierla, Fr. Robert Stephanopoulos. Staff: Bishop Dimitrios of Xanthos, general secretary of SCOBA, and Fr. Gregory Havrilak, SCOBA Ecumenical and Interreligious Relations office.

NCC Marks Bible Anniversary, Honors Cyprus Ambassador TAMPA, Fla. — Joy and reverence marked the National Council of Churches General Assembly’s celebration in November of the 50th anniversary of the Revised Standard Version of the Bible, as translators shared what it means to them to work so closely with the Bible’s sacred texts. “Translation is a serious business,” Dr. Walter J. Harrelson reflected at the dinner celebration in Tampa, Fla., Nov. 16, which concluded the assembly’s Nov. 14-16 annual meeting. The Bible is “a reality so mysterious and powerful that it has opened the eyes of many through the centuries. It’s a text that has claimed our own lives.” Also at the Saturday night dinner, NCC President Elenie K. Huszagh, a member of the Archdiocesan Council, honored Erato Kozakou-Marcoullis, Cyprus’ ambassador to the United States, with the 2002 NCC President’s Award, hailing her “struggles for justice and peace” for the people of the Mediterranean island nation. The Ambassador, addressing the Gen-

eral Assembly, said, “We want to see our people — Christian and Muslim, Greek and Turkish, build a common home in unity and cooperation, build bridges of tolerance and understanding. We need justice and the rule of law, where the human rights of all citizens are fully safeguarded. We need peace, demilitarization, a culture of inclusion, respect and dignity.” On Saturday, the NCC General Assembly also voted unanimously to call on the Israeli government to recognize the August 2001 canonical election of Patriarch Irenaios of the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem. Without that recognition, explained President Huszagh, the Patriarchate is unable to function as a legal entity in Israel, and is thus unable to oversee properly the Holy Shrines and other property under its jurisdiction and to operate the schools, hospitals and other institutions through which it serves Greek Orthodox Christians in the Holy Land.


ARCHBISHOP IAKOVOS’ ORDINATION Anniversary Celebrated at Southampton Church SOUTHAMPTON, N.Y. – Kimisis tis Theotokou parish honored Archbishop Iakovos, former head of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of North and South America, on Nov. 24, the 68th anniversary of his ordination as a deacon. by Jim Golding

It was His Eminence’s first visit to the parish. Hundreds of faithful packed the church, including several members of the Leadership 100 Endowment Fund and Order of St. Andrew/Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, National and Diocesan Philoptochos leaders, including President Georgia Skeadas.

Richard M. Nixon, Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton. President Carter, the 2002 Nobel Peace Prize recipient, referred to the Archbishop as his “buddy” and awarded him the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1980. The Archbishop retired in 1996. Archbishop Iakovos was known during those times for his ecumenical and interfaith leadership, as well as his passionate advocacy of issues relating to the security of Greece and justice for Cyprus, tragically divided by a Turkish invasion in 1974. He was born July 29, 1910, on the Greek island of Imvros, which was

ARCHBISHOP IAKOVOS, flanked by Fr. Karloutsos and Deacon Constantine Lazarakis, bestows his blessings on the congregation at Kimisis Church following his homily. At left is Metropolitan Tarasios of Buenos Aires.

METROPOLITAN TARASIOS of Buenos Aires leads those attending in singing the Archbishop’s fimi at the luncheon following the service.

A surprise visitor was Metropolitan Tarasios of Buenos Aires, who had come to New York to attend meetings of SAE and who spoke at the luncheon about the inspiring leadership of Archbishop Iakovos, and of his own ministry in South America. In his homily following the Divine Liturgy, Archbishop Iakovos said it was “with humble pride” that he was visiting “the youngest church community in the greater New York area.” He praised the founders of the parish and individuals who worked to build the church. “Thanks to you we have a church here, and not just a little insignificant church, where we can refresh ourselves with the presence of God,” His Eminence said. He also warned the faithful, “not to allow anything to level your vision. Your soul is the most precious thing you possess.” “As archbishop of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of North and South America for 37 years, Archbishop Iakovos headed the Church during some of the most turbulent decades in the history of the United States”, Fr. Karloutsos noted. He became known to all Americans by his prominent role in the Civil Rights Movement, marching with Martin Luther King at Selma in 1965, and as a constant presence on the national scene at religious meetings and in inaugural ceremonies and at consultations during the presidencies of Dwight D. Eisenhower, John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson,

taken over by Turkey. He served as dean of Annunciation Cathedral in Boston in the 1940s and became known for his youth and education work. The occasion had special meaning for Fr. Alexander Karloutsos, pastor of the Southampton Church, who was the Archbishop’s assistant over many years, also representing him as director of communications and vicar for public affairs at the Archdiocese. During the luncheon, Fr. Karloutsos noted that perhaps the most important gift Archbishop Iakovos has given to the Church is “imagination.” In addition to his pastoral duties, Fr. Karloutsos serves as executive director of the Archbishop Iakovos Leadership 100 Endowment Fund Inc., the major gifts foundation for the Greek Orthodox Church. Leadership 100 has supported the critical ministries of the Church with grants and gifts of almost $11 million since the Archbishop founded the organization in 1984. Also during the luncheon, Parish Council President Paul Maus, Philoptochos chapter President Maria Vlahadamis and Parent-Teacher Organization President Christina Staussfield made presentations to the Archbishop for the children of Imvros and other causes. The program included a musical presentation by children of the parish and the Hamptons Hellenic Dancers. Pericles Bakas, who has been at the forefront of the establishment of the church in the Hamptons, served as luncheon chairman.



PAOI Announces Spring 2003 Community Ed. Programs BERKELEY, Calif. — The Patriarch Athenagoras Orthodox Institute will offer two educational opportunities for the community beginning in February. The first course will be eight weeks of instruction in Byzantine Chant taught by John Boyer. The second will be a one-day workshop, “The Educating Community” for parish leaders and religious educators led by Dr. Anton Vrame. “Introduction to Byzantine Chant” will be an eight-week course taught on Thursday evenings at the Institute, taught by John Boyer. Course participants will learn to read the musical notation of Byzantine Music, begin to develop skills in Byzantine Chant in Greek and English, and learn the order of services. The course will begin on February 6, 2003 and continue until March 27. The cost for the course is $200 plus course materials. This course is ideal for someone who is interested in Byzantine Music, whether a choir member or assistant at the chanter stand. According to Institute Director, Anton Vrame, “We are offer-

ing this course for the community so that we can maintain our Byzantine musical tradition. The art of Byzantine Chant will be lost in the United States unless we begin to instruct members of the community and teach them to chant in Greek and English. Gone are the days when we can expect a chanter to arrive from overseas and take care of everything for us.” John Michael Boyer, chanter at Annunciation Cathedral in San Francisco, will teach the course in Byzantine Chant. Boyer has lectured at workshops and seminars on Eastern Orthodox liturgical music, and directed the Byzantine Chant schola at the 2001 San Francisco Diocese Greek Orthodox Church Music Conference, for which he also prepared transcriptions and English adaptations for the Great Vespers and Orthros (Matins) services. He began studies of Byzantine Chant at age 14 under musicologist Alexander Lingas at Holy Trinity Church in Portland. In 1996 and 1999, he furthered his studies in Byzantine Chant in Athens un-

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OCF Wins Grant to Expand Work of National Office BOSTON — Hellenic College has been awarded a grant from the Lilly Endowment for a new program, “We Offer These Gifts.” This five-year project will initiate or enhance programs that will help prepare a new generation of leaders for the Church and for society. Expanding the work of the national Orthodox Christian Fellowship (OCF) office will assist in fulfilling this goal. The grant will enable the OCF to hire a fulltime administrator. As the grant proposal states, the leadership of Hellenic College hopes that “by funding the National OCF Office, the Orthodox Churches in America will be able to develop and enhance the work of local OCFs. The administrator will also be able to work with students who want to start an OCF at a local campus, but do not know where to begin.” OCF is a campus-based outreach organization for college students and formed by college students. OCF activity

dates to the 1950’s. In 2000, the Standing Conference of Canonical Orthodox Bishops in the Americas (SCOBA), recognizing the importance of campus ministry and acknowledging the on-going efforts of OCF, adopted OCF as its official campus ministry effort. Currently, the National Office coordinates and guides over 180 chapters across America. This pan-Orthodox endeavor is overseen by an executive committee, appointed by SCOBA, and aided by an eleven person Student Advisory Board. The national OCF office provides support for local chapters in many ways, including the following: -The Pan-Orthodox College and Young Adult Conference, a bicoastal event; -The Real Break program, which provides young adults with the opportunity to participate in missionary work during spring break; -The Basil Leaf, a quarterly newsletter.

Orthodox Christian Fellowship Debuts New Website BOSTON – Orthodox Christian Fellowship (OCF) announces the release of its new website. It has been developed to be a hub for resources for all college ministry efforts and programs. It offers up-to-date news and postings from OCFs across North America. The online directory allows searches by state to find one of the 180 local OCFs near you. It is also the number one resource for materials to start a campus ministry effort complete with guides, pre-made posters and plenty of tips. Existing OCFs and visitors can access fliers, posters, and a multimedia presentation of the OCF Video. Visitors can also access the current issue and past archived issues of The Basil Leaf, a student produced newsletter distributed to 10,000 Orthodox students in North America. Additionally, the site hosts two of the most outstanding Orthodox young adult national programs run by students. Real Break, which is an alternative spring break program traveling to exciting locations to help those who are less fortunate and the College Conference, which is held annu-

ally on two coasts where over 400 college students come together to experience fellowship, worship, fun and hear phenomenal speakers. The site has applications and detailed information about each program. Visit

About OCF Orthodox Christian Fellowship (OCF) is the official campus ministry effort of the Standing Conference of Canonical Orthodox Bishops in the Americas (SCOBA). It is a Pan-Orthodox effort, overseen by an Executive Committee and aided by an 11member Student Advisory Board. The office is located at Hellenic College/Holy Cross School of Theology where a full time staff develops OCF programs and resources. The staff is available to guide and support local OCF chapters through communication with the larger Orthodox community, national programs, and development of resources for use by Orthodox college students. For More Information: Orthodox Christian Fellowship, PO Box 249, Boston, MA 02130; Phone: 800-919-1OCF.


H C / H C


HC/HC Establishes Marriage and Family Enrichment Program Gone are the days when the typical seminarian at Hellenic College/Holy Cross was a teen-age student straight out of high school. This year, there are 35 married seminarians and five other married students who will serve the Church in other capacities and the Office of Student Life had to consider offering new programs when dealing with the students’ spiritual and emotional well being. At the request of Archbishop Demetrios, a Marriage and Family Enrichment Program was established and Holy Cross Dean Fr. Emmanuel Clapsis named a committee to create and shape this program. Members include Fr. Clapsis, Fr. Charles Joanides, LMFT, director of the newly established Archdiocesan Department of Family; Presbyteres Fotini Stylianopoulos and Stephanie Panagos of the Boston Diocese Sisterhood of Presvyteres, and Fr. Gerasimos Makris, Michael Kallas and Julie Tziolas, Office of Student Life staff members. Along with the committee’s own suggestions, input came from a focus group session of seminary wives and conversations with clergy families throughout the Archdiocese. Results showed the program for seminarian wives and couples should include opportunities for spiritual growth and fellowship, communications skills and mar-

riage enrichment. The program sponsored two events for wives only and four for the couples. In addition, seminary wives participated, as in the past, in the Boston Diocese Sisterhood of Presvyteres’ fall and spring gatherings and retreat. On Sept. 21, a welcome brunch was sponsored for seminarians’ wives. At this gathering, Presbytera Elaine Gigicos offered her presentation “Living Your Life in Peace, Not Pieces” that discussed components of married life emphasizing Church service and the relationship of personal life to spiritual life. The annual “Presbytera Panel” took place Oct. 26 with future presbyteres asking questions and presenting concerns to Presbyteres Angie Constantinides, Cynthia Paleologos, Haidee Marangos, Georgia Chamberas and Athanasia Papademetriou. The program held its first “Couples’ Morning Out” on Nov. 16. A babysitting service was provided to allow seminarians and their wives to attend. Effie Sideropoulou, a licensed marriage and family therapist, discussed communications skills couples can use. The event also allowed the couple quality time together, separate from their children, to practice these techniques. The Office of Student Life and committee members will evaluate this semester’s progress and plan next semester’s events.

Hellenic College Wins $2 Million Lilly Endowment 5-Year Grant BROOKLINE, Mass. – Hellenic College is one of 39 colleges and universities in the country to receive a $2 million grant from Lilly Endowment Inc. that begins or enhances programs to prepare a new generation of leaders for church and society. This five-year implementation grant will initiate the college’s “We Offer These Gifts” project. “Our Hellenic College and Holy Cross family, trustees, faculty, staff and students, embraces with respect and resolve this visionary and generous grant from the Lilly Foundation,” said HC/HC President Fr. Nicholas C. Triantafilou. “The foundation’s gift offers an opportunity for creative exploration and practical application of a sensitive and life effecting area of service to our young people.” “We Offer These Gifts” will establish an Office for Vocations and Ministries to provide high school and college students with opportunities to discern their life’s vocations, including the possibility of pursuing ordination in the Orthodox Church. The office will create vocational assessment programs for Hellenic College undergraduates, a summer institute for high school students, and offer opportunities for faculty and administration to reflect on and develop their vocations through seminars and grants.

“We Offer These Gifts” will also firmly establish a national Office for Orthodox Christian Fellowships (OCF), a North American, and inter-Orthodox effort to develop and coordinate campus ministry programs. The grant “will create a heretofore non-existent program where Orthodox young adults will have the opportunity to consider their life goals and faith convictions within a theologically oriented conversation,” according to Archbishop Demetrios. “Such conversations will, I hope and pray, lead these young individuals along a path of service to their Church, their community, and the world.” Created in 1937, the endowment is a private philanthropic foundation that supports religion, education, and community development as well as initiatives that benefit youth, foster leadership education among nonprofit institutions, and promote the causes of philanthropy and volunteerism. Founded in 1968, Hellenic College is the only fully accredited, four-year Orthodox Christian college in the nation. It offers a liberal arts education with concentrations in classics, elementary education, human development, management and leadership, management information systems and religious studies.

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Second Doctorate

The Rev. Protopresbyter Frank Marangos, director of the Archdiocese Department of Religious Education, has received his second doctorate with the recent completion of his studies at Nova Southeastern University, Fischler Graduate School of Education and Human Services in Miami. He earned an Ed.D (Doctor of Education) in adult education. His dissertation, titled The Development of a Teacher Training Manual for Novice Greek Orthodox Clergy, has been nominated to receive the university’s Outstanding Dissertation Award. Fr. Marangos also holds a Doctor of Ministry (D.Min.) degree in Christian education from Perkins School of Theology at Southern Methodist University (SMU) in Dallas, where he graduated with distinction. He is a 1979 honors graduate of Holy Cross School of Theology (M.Div.) and received his B.A. from Hellenic College in 1976. He recently was named to the editorial board of the Christian Higher Education journal, and is a member of the National Council of Churches Committee on Christian Education, the American Society of Curriculum Developers, and the Orthodox Theological Society in America.

Joins board

Chris V. Semos, former member of the Texas House of Representatives, past president of Holy Trinity Church in Dallas, and an Archon Deputatos, recently was elected to the board of directors of Methodist Hospital of Dallas. Mr. Semos, who also served as co-chairman of the 1986 Clergy-Laity Congress in Dallas, began serving a three-year term as a hospital trustee in late October.

New principal

Koraes Greek American Elementary School of Palos Hills, Ill., has installed Sylvia Stathopoulos as the new principal of the venerable institution. Ms. Stathopoulos, herself a graduate of Koraes, holds a masters in educational leadership from DePaul University in Chicago, where she had a 3.97 grade point average. She is the first principal to be proficient in various computer programs and is fluent in Greek. She taught for many years in Chicago public schools.

Inaugurates flight

Alaska Airlines Vice President Clifford T. Argue, longtime contributor to the Orthodox Observer, and his wife, Theodora, participated in the airline’s inaugural flight from Seattle to Newark Liberty International Airport in New Jersey on Oct. 28 The Argues are members of St. Demetrios Church in Seattle.

Heads agency

Betty Georgaklis of Quincy, Mass., recently was elected president of SGM Advertising in Norwell, Mass. She previously served as executive vice president/treasurer of SGM before her election and also has worked as an advertising partner to Anatolia College in Thessaloniki and College Year in Athens. Ms. Georgaklis is a member of St. Catherine’s Church in Quincy and serves on its building committee, and has been active in fund-raising for a new church to be built in Braintree, Mass.



Community Nurtures Priests and Prolific Ministries For 35 years the lives of this progressive community in New Jersey and one particular family have been intertwined. Since 1967, St. George Church has been led by the father-son team of Fr. John P. and George T. Orfanakos, the current pastor. Another son, Peter, also entered the priesthood and serves St. Barbara’s Church in Orange, Conn. In the process, the parish has grown from about 60 families to its present size, and a corresponding development and expansion of its ministries. One result has been several young parishioners also entered the priesthood over the years. Fr. George credits this, and the highly successful ministries of the par-


a church, which Archbishop Athenagoras consecrated on Oct. 15, 1933. In the ensuing years, women of the parish established the St. Paraskevi Philoptochos chapter, which played a leading role in the community in the Greek War Relief drive during World War II and continues to this day at the forefront of St. George Church’s humanitarian efforts. Between 1925 and 1967, 12 priests served the community. The second longest-serving pastor was Fr. Peter Kostakos, from 1952-67. During his ministry, the community purchased a Protestant church building in Passaic and converted it into a Greek Orthodox house of worship. Fr. Kostakos was succeeded by Fr. John, himself the son of a priest in Greece,

The community, with most of its membership consisting of second and third generation Greek Americans, has many dynamic ministries. Parishioners support these efforts mostly through a strong stewardship program and a yearly Greek festival.

Presbytera’s ministry While the father and son team oversees most of the ministries, another member of the Orfanakos family serves the parish in her own right, and also at the diocesan and national levels of the Church. Presbytera Margaret Orfanakos, mother of Fr. George, has been the Sunday School director for many years. In 1983, Bishop Silas appointed Presbytera Margaret as chairman of the


Name: St. George Greek Orthodox Church Location: Clifton, N.J. Diocese: New Jersey Size: about 500 families Founded: 1923 Clergy: Fr. George T. Orfanakos, pastor Holy Cross ’94; Fr. John P. Orfanakos pastor emeritus, Holy Cross ’61. e-mail: church@stgeorgeclifton Noteworthy: Son succeeded father as pastor; community has produced several priests. ST. GEORGE GREEK ORTHODOX CHURCH IN CLIFTON, NEW JERSEY ish to the community’s “very spiritual conscience.” He continued, “The lay people are phenomenal here. The work and respect they have for the clergy is phenomenal and they have great respect for the ministry of the Church.” Fr. George, 30, was named the pastor by Archbishop Demetrios on Christmas Eve, 1999, after having served parishes in Astoria and the Bronx, N.Y., for five years. The Archbishop bestowed the Pastor Emeritus title upon Fr. John in June 2002, though the veteran priest says he is not retired, but busier than ever. “I’m now working twice as much as before,” he said. While his son handles the administrative responsibilities of the parish, he has more time for serving the members through the various ministries, including hospital ministry. Fr. John also gives the weekly sermon in Greek, while Fr. George offers the English homily.

Humble beginnings This parish’s beginnings 80 years ago seem reminiscent of the early Church at the time of the Apostles. A small number of Greek immigrant families scattered in Bergen and Passaic counties, across the Hudson from New York City, established their first church in the small city of Passaic, with Fr. Christos Papanicholaou as the first pastor. He served from 1922-25. According to a parish history, these first immigrants from various parts of Greece worshiped in a small secondfloor apartment. They soon found a larger facility. As more families moved to the area, the community purchased an old, two-story house and converted it into

who ushered in an era of phenomenal growth and progress in the community. In 1967, the parish had 61 families. Fr. John’s dream was to build a new church, with a community center and classrooms, which took form with groundbreaking ceremonies in June 1969 when Archbishop Iakovos turned over the first spade of dirt on a site atop a hill in neighboring Clifton, a city of about 72,000, on the New Jersey side of the New York Metropolitan Area. The resulting 8th centurystyle Byzantine church became CLIFTON the first part of the complex that exists today. In April 1974, the Archbishop conducted the Thyranoixia (door-opening) service with Bishop Silas of Amphipolis (the future Metropolitan Silas of New Jersey) and, four years later, held the consecration service. The Metropolitan consecrated the church’s St. Nektarios Chapel in 1979. The chapel draws hundreds of Orthodox and non-Orthodox Christians who venerate the saint’s relics and pray for miracle healings. In the later 1980s, the next expansion phase took place with the completion of the community center, gymnasium and classrooms. An adjacent property was purchased in 1995 to meet future needs that will include a conference center, banquet hall and more parking, to be underwritten by a local developer who is not of Greek Orthodox background. From its small beginnings, St. George’s parishioners now come from nine counties, some more than 60 miles away.

Diocese St. John Chrysostom Oratorical Festival and, in 1985, she and Fr. John were named co-chairmen of the national oratorical festival under the Archdiocese Department of Religious Education. She is in her 18th year. Also, from 1996-2000, she was president of the National Sisterhood of Presvyteres.

Education always a priority “There has always been special emphasis in our parish on education,” said Fr. George. This includes well-crafted homilies every week, which he delivers in English, along with that of Fr. John. “My father puts in a lot of time and gives a message that is alive,” Fr. George said. Formal education programs include the Sunday School, which has an enrollment of 225 children ranging from ages 2½ to late teens, served by 40 teachers. Classes begin following the distribution of Holy Communion and meet for an hour. The Sunday School sponsors fund drives for mission outreach, food collection for needy families, gifts for needy children and an “Angel Tree” at Christmas. The Christmas angel tree consists of ceramic angels imprinted with the names of the community’s departed loved ones placed on the branches. The school has also supported a mission priest for the past 15 years. Other education programs include English and Greek Bible studies, a weekly Orthodox “reading room,” where participants discuss readings from Church Fathers, much like a book club, and which is run by lay people

 page 26




Patriarch of Alexandria Baptizes New IOCC, Antiochian Church Leaders Discuss Needs in Holy Land Orthodox Christians in South Africa ENGLEWOOD, N.J. - The spiritual leader of the Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese expressed his continuing support for the humanitarian response by International Orthodox Christian Charities (IOCC) to the human suffering in the Holy Land. Metropolitan Philip welcomed Nora Kort, head of IOCC’s office in Jerusalem, to the Archdiocesan headquarters on Sunday, Nov. 17, the last day of her seven-day speaking tour across the United States. “Nora brings with her the suffering of the Palestinian people, and we share in their suffering,” Metropolitan Philip said. “When we see innocent children being killed, our hearts are shattered. When olive trees are uprooted, we are uprooted.” Ms. Kort, a native of Jerusalem, directs IOCC’s humanitarian initiatives in the Holy Land, including a $2.6 million rural development project in the West Bank. From Nov. 10-17, she visited Orthodox parishes in the United States to raise awareness and support for IOCC’s work in the Holy Land. Her audience with Metropolitan Philip capped a series of stops in Los Angeles, Detroit, Baltimore, Washington, and Westfield, N.J. Ms. Kort spoke with Metropolitan Philip about IOCC’s efforts since 1997 to alleviate suffering and create opportunity for Palestinians living in rural, isolated areas in the West Bank. She was accompanied by IOCC Board Member Anne Glynn Mackoul and former IOCC Board Chairman Charles R. Ajalat, as well as IOCC Executive Director

Constantine M. Triantafilou. “I am pleased to hear of the impact that we are having in Jerusalem,” His Eminence said. “I would like to see IOCC doing more and being more visible.” Metropolitan Philip called on all Orthodox Christians to get behind IOCC and its work in the Holy Land. And he said the Archdiocese’s Children’s Relief Fund, a program to help children in Lebanon, should expand its reach into the West Bank. “The needs here are not ordinary because the situation is man-made,” Ms. Kort said. “As Orthodox Christians, we are called to serve the vulnerable, the needy, and show them our solidarity - spiritually, financially, and humanitarian.” Metropolitan Philip also praised Ms. Kort and other IOCC staff members who “put their lives on the line” every day to serve others. He likened the work of IOCC to the actions of the Good Samaritan, an outsider who offered life-saving assistance to someone in need. Before returning to Jerusalem, Ms. Kort thanked the parishes and communities that hosted her talks, including St. Michael Antiochian Orthodox Church in Van Nuys, Calif.; St. Mary Antiochian Orthodox Church in Livonia, Mich.; Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church in Westfield, N.J.; Sts. Peter & Paul Antiochian Orthodox Church in Potomac, Md.; and the Annunciation Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Baltimore. For more information about IOCC’s humanitarian work in the Holy Land and elsewhere, please visit or call toll-free 1-877-803-IOCC (4622).

PARISH PROFILE  page 25 with priests. “We try to encourage a ministry of laity and clergy,” said Fr. George. “We don’t want to run them (the ministries) by ourselves.” Additionally, the parish has a Greek school with an enrollment of 115 students from kindergarten through sixth grade held twice a week. There also is an adult Greek school class. Through its computer ministry and website, St. George Church offers on-line adult religious education classes and live video broadcasts of the Divine Liturgy and all weekly services. The website also contains a log of sermons. Fr. George also holds pre-marital classes. Known as “It Takes Two,” the classes are open to all engaged couples that can come together for frank discussions about marriage. One of Fr. George’s goals is to establish a local TV ministry for northern New Jersey as part of educating the local community about the Orthodox faith.

Philanthropic outreach As it has done since the 1930s, the St. Paraskevi Philoptochos has been the heart of the parish’s philanthropic ministry. One of its programs is the “Circle of Hope,” a monthly outreach program under the direction of the two priests and a licensed clinical psychologist that provides an outlet for the bereaved to share their pain in a confidential setting. At the Los Angeles National Philoptochos Convention in July, the Circle of

Hope program was awarded fourth prize among parish entries. The organization also works closely with neighboring Orthodox churches and those of other denominations in doing philanthropic work. St. George Church provides many other ministries, too numerous to mention, for all age groups, including a Byzantine choir, folk dance classes and “icon reading” classes. Fr. George also has developed a youth ministry team, “to find members of the 1830 age group that get lost.” He also places team members as peer leaders and mentors for younger groups. Over the years, the nurturing spiritual environment at St. George has inspired some parishioners to become priests, or lay assistants, in addition to Fr. George and his brother. These include the current dean of Holy Cross School of Theology, the Rev. Dr. Emmanuel Clapsis; Fr. Konstantine Mendrinos of St. Basil Church, San Jose, Calif.; and Fr. Michael Monos of St. Elizabeth Church, Gainesville, Fla., and Michael Diamond, a lat assistant at St. Nicholas Church, Baltimore. As the church’s many prolific ministries serve more and more people, perhaps the biggest problem facing the parish is how to accommodate the overflow crowd of people who attend the Sunday Divine Liturgy. “We’re running out of space,” said Fr. George. “We’re at the point now where we must expand.” — Compiled by Jim Golding

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa — Petros VII, Pope and Patriarch of Alexandria and all Africa, will visit Soshanguve on Monday 4 November to baptized about 100 new members of the Orthodox Church on a visit to Soshanguve on Nov. 4. by Stephen Methodius Hayes

Fr Athanasios Akunda, a young missionary priest of the Orthodox Church in Kenya, who has been working in South Africa since June 2002, presented candidates for baptism to the Patriarch. Fr Athanasios, who studied theology in Nairobi and Boston, was ordained a priest by Metropolitan Seraphim, the Orthodox Archbishop of Johannesburg and Pretoria, last July, and sent to Soshanguve in response to a request from a group of people there to be taught the Orthodox Christian faith. The baptism, held in the Halala Hall in Block H, Soshanguve, culminated a historic process that goes back more than 75 years, when a group of 400 people in Kimberley, led by Daniel William Alexander, decided to form a branch of the African Orthodox Church back in 1924. In 1927 Alexander went to America to be made bishop by George Alexander

McGuire of the African Orthodox Church there. In the 1930s Alexander visited both Uganda and Kenya and planted branches of the African Orthodox Church in those countries. The leaders in East Africa, however, discovered that the Orthodox Church in Africa fell under the Patriarch of Alexandria, in Egypt, where the Christian faith had been established by St Mark in the first century. In 1946 the East African branches of the African Orthodox Church were united with the Patriarchate of Alexandria. After a period of hardship when they were suppressed by the British colonial government, they flourished after Kenya and Uganda became independent. Mindful that the first news about Orthodoxy had reached Kenya from South Africa, Fr Athanasios responded willingly to the call from Archbishop Seraphim to help to repay that debt by teaching people in South Africa about the Orthodox faith. In South Africa most Orthodox Christians are of Greek, Russian or Serbian descent, and most of the parishes are composed of immigrants from those countries and their descendants. The new parish of St Seraphim in Soshanguve will be the first one in which the majority of members are South Africans.

Orthodoxy on the Move in Tanzania ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. — In the past five years the Diocese of Bukoba in Tanzania has experienced a jump in the number of faithful from 20,000 to 35,000. This growth is reflected in the increased number of Orthodox communities in Tanzania from 57 to 94 and the number of priests, from 7 to 25, to serve these communities. The ratio of priests to people, however, is more than 1,000 people per priest. The Orthodox faithful are spread out over large distances and are often only accessible by foot or bicycle. Despite the great shortage of clergy, many exciting things are happening in the

Bukoba Diocese of Tanzania. Eight seminars for priests, catechists, women, youth and students have been held to help improve the intellectual, moral and spiritual life of the faithful. The Kasikizi Catechetical School has 12 students studying Church history, liturgics, Biblical studies and church administration among other subjects in the Swahili language. New communities are continuing to grow and new churches are being constructed. For more information about Orthodox Tanzania visit

COMMUNITY ED. PROGRAMS  page 24 der Lycourgos Angelopoulos, director of the Greek Byzantine Choir. He has been a coach for Chanticleer and the Minnesota Symphony. He has received critical acclaim for his solo chant performances in the recordings and concerts of Cappella Romana, the vocal ensemble specializing in early and contemporary music of the Christian East and West.

The Educating Community The second course will be a one-day workshop, “The Educating Community,” led by Dr. Anton Vrame. This workshop, designed for parish leaders and religious educators, will focus on the entire life of a parish as the primary educator. “The workshop starts from the premise that everything the parish is doing is teaching people about what it means to be and to live as an Orthodox Christian,” according to Vrame. Participants will be encouraged to reflect on their parish experiences for the positive and negative educational influences they might have. Strategies will be provided and shared for developing and enhancing the range and quality of parish ministries. This workshop will be held

March 22 at the Ascension Cathedral in Oakland. The cost, which includes lunch and program materials, is $30. Anton Vrame is director of the Patriarch Athenagoras Orthodox Institute. He is one of a handful of Orthodox specialists in Christian Education in the world. He is the author of “The Educating Icon: Teaching Wisdom and Holiness in the Orthodox Way.” Before coming to the Institute, he taught Christian education at Holy Cross School of Theology, Brookline, and St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary, Crestwood, N.Y. “The PAOI exists to serve the faithful of the Bay Area,” said Vrame. “We are offering these two opportunities, to begin in a small way, in order to offer what we can at this time to enhance the quality of parish life, support the work of the clergy, and to better equip the people who volunteer in our for their ministries. We are not trying to duplicate the education that’s already occurring in parishes.” For more information on either course and to obtain registration materials, please contact the Institute (510) 6493450 or by e-mail




The Voice of


P rresident’ esident’ esident’ss Christmas Message

NJ Diocese Philoptochos Board Meets

The angel said to the shepherds, “For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.”


ith the celebration of the birth of Our Lord Jesus Christ approaching, it is crucial for us to be mindful of the message of this holy season, namely, that He brings peace and goodwill towards men, for He is the incarnate love of God, reconciling humanity to God and people to each other. This reconciliation and love is the heart of what Philoptochos is and represents. The bonds that connect us as humans, who are created in the likeness of His image, are the bonds of love, love of Our Lord and love of one another. The word philanthropy is derived from the Greek words philein, to love, and anthropos, man. We, the ladies of Philoptochos, are the ambassadors of philanthropy, the messengers of love, kindness and goodwill towards men. It has been such a great pleasure and honor for me to visit many of the most beautiful Philoptochos Chapters of the Parishes of our Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America that comprise our National Philoptochos Society. I have been in the presence of an astounding number of these ambassadors of philanthropy. I have experienced their love, their support and their great desire to continually work for the glory of God, for philanthropy and for the ongoing growth, success and furtherance of Philoptochos as an even greater National entity. May the spirit of Christmas be with you each and every day. On behalf of the National Philoptochos Board, I wish you and yours a very blessed and joyous Christmas. May the spirit of Our Lord guide you throughout the New Year, and always, to bring you renewed reconciliation and love.

The Philoptochos Board of The Diocese of New Jersey with Fr Leondis, chancellor. From left: Dolly Demetrios, second vice president; Mary Papageorge; Bessie Drogaris, first vice president; Ronnie Kyritis, president; Pennie Anast, treasurer; Lucretia Edreos, assistant treasurer and Aspasia Melis, past president/advisor.

With love in Christ, Georgia Skeadas President, National Philoptochos Society

Chicago Diocese Philoptochos Honor Chanters

METROPOLITAN IAKOVOS with children chanters, Dr. John Diveris, and Diocese Philoptochos President Bissias and luncheon co-chairs June Neokos and Anastasia Weaver.

CHICAGO – Diocese Philoptochos recently held a benefit luncheon attended by more than 300 guests, including Metropolitan Iakovos, priests and Philoptochos members. “This year’s theme was “Praising the Lord – Our Orthodox Faith” in appreciation for the chanters of the Diocese. President Mary Ann Bissias welcomed those attending. After the luncheon, the Children Chanters of St. Iakovos Church in Valparaiso, Ind., and Sts. Constantine

THE NATIONAL PHILOPTOCHOS HEADQUARTERS OFFICE 345 E 74th Street New York, NY 10021-3701 Tel.: (212) 744-4390 Fax: (212) 861-1956 email:

and Helen Church of Merrillville, Ind., under the direction of Dr. John Diveris, chanted several hymns. Alexander Michalakos spoke briefly about the Diocese of Chicago Byzantine School of Chant, founded by Metropolitan Iakovos. Chanters of the Chicago Byzantine School of Music then offered a selection of hymns. Proceeds of nearly $25,000 from the event will benefit the Bishop Iakovos Scholarship Assistance Program, the Greek American Rehabilitation Nursing Center, the Diocesan Home and other philanthropic endeavors of the Diocese Philoptochos, including Feed the Hungry Program, Philanthropy Fund, Hellenic Heart Program, Bishop’s Task Force on AIDS, International Orthodox Christian Charities, Campus Ministry, Christmas Open House, Bishop’s Welfare Fund, the citywide Vasilopita Celebration and St. Antonios Vespers and Lenten Retreat.

The New Jersey Diocese Philoptochos Board held their regional meeting on Nov. 1 at diocese offices in New Providence. Ronnie Kyritsis, Diocesan president, led the meeting the Very Rev. Alexander G. Leondis, diocesan chancellor, in attendance. The Philoptochos Board commemorated the feast day of their patron saints, Cosmas and Damian with a prayer service led by Fr. Alexander and the Reverend Bill Gikas, diocesan youth director. The opening prayer offered by the priests set the tone of continuing guidance and love for the dedicated work of the Ladies Philoptochos. The 15 ladies on the Diocesan Board discussed issues relating to their service to the Lord as the Church’s philanthropic arm. The agenda included congratulatory remarks on the appointment of Georgia Skeadas as National Philoptochos President, an active member of the Diocese of New Jersey, and the presentation of $15,000 to the Pediatric Division of the University Medical School at Newark, N.J., a grant from the National Philoptochos Medical Fund disbursed at the Los Angeles Convention. Treasurer Pennie Anast reported that the Diocese had 2,958 Philoptochos stewards. Lucretia Edreos, assistant treasurer, is creating a database from the current roster lists. Upcoming events discussed included: Vasilopitta events in January to benefit St. Basil Academy; a fundraiser at Holy Trinity Church, Westfield, N.J. on Feb. 9 to benefit St. Michael’s Home, chaired by Bessie Drogaris, Pennie Anast and Aspasia Melis; the chapters’ visitation to St. Michael’s on Feb. 22, chaired by Mary

Papageorge; the March 28 Lenten Retreat at St Basil Academy chaired by Dolly Demetris; and the Diocesan Biennial Conference on Saturday, April 5, at St. George Cathedral in Philadelphia. The Diocesan Philoptochos newsletter is in its fourth printing, thanks to the enormous efforts of Mary C. Argerake and her team in Ocean City, Md. The emphasis of the meeting was ways and means to increase our focus and effectiveness upon the main goal, philanthropy. The very gracious ladies, Rula Thasites, administrator/registrar and administrative assistant Penny Pefanis, provided not only a wonderful luncheon, but a warm and hospitable welcome.

Washington Chapter Celebrates 70th Year WASHINGTON – St. Sophia Cathedral Philoptochos chapter celebrated its 70th anniversary on Nov. 3. Among those attending was Archdiocesan District Board President Stella Capiris, accompanied by board members Helen Pappas and Stella Fiorentino. The celebration began with an Artoclasia after the Divine Liturgy at the Cathedral, celebrated by Fr. John T. Tavlarides and Fr. Steven Zorzos. At the luncheon after the services, several past chapter presidents were honored. Mrs. Capiris made a presentation to chapter President Mary Ann Paturis and luncheon Chairman Catherine Kambanis commemorating them for their efforts and success of the anniversary luncheon.

Denver Diocese Philoptochos News Anchorwoman Hold Retreat at St. Basil’s Speaks to Weston Chapter DENVER – Ladies from the Denver Diocese Philoptochos traveled across the country in early November to hold a retreat at St. Basil Academy in Garrison, N.Y. The retreat topic was “Death and Dying” presented by Fr. Constantine Sitaras, Academy director. The 13 Philoptochos members attending the Nov. 8-10 retreat also toured the academy to better understand the significance of the Philoptochos’ major involvement with the Academy for nearly 60 years.

WESTON, Mass. – St. Demetrios Philoptochos chapter recently welcomed Maria Stephanos, news anchor for WFXTFOX 25 IN Boston. Previously, Ms. Stephanos was at WJARTV in Providence, R.I. She is a graduate of Emerson College in Boston and has also worked as a reporter for WCBS radio, National Public Radio and WNBS radio. About 80 Philoptochos members attended the event.



Dr. Kimon A. Legakis Athens University Law SchoolUMaster of Law, Harvard Law School Doctor of Law, Greece UCertificate of International Law, Hague Academy of Int’l Law

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Youth Ministry


What’s Up... with T-n-t I hate to be the one to drop this T-n-t “bomb,” but there has been a real misunderstanding in our Church with the difference between what the Holy Traditions of our Orthodox Faith are, and those traditions that we have adopted as members of the Church. Holy Traditions or the capital T’s are the Traditions that the Church has handed down to us. by George Hazlaris

These cannot be separated from the life of the Faith. Holy Tradition includes such things as the sacraments, feast days, and the dogma of our Church to name a few. Other traditions or the little t’s are traditions that we have implemented into our faith for various reasons. Many of these traditions have come out of piety and cultural customs, but some of these traditions come from a lack of understanding of Holy Tradition. Not all little t’s are bad. Some are expressions of the faith that are born from cultural customs and piety, but the capital T’s are essential. Let’s take a closer look at Communion. It is a sacrament of the church… so big T. Surrounding it are many Holy Traditions of the church and probably as many traditions we have learned from our families. Holy Tradition teaches us to approach the Chalice reverently. Some people have been taught to approach the cup with their arm crossed across their chest. In the Ethiopian Orthodox Church, they remove their shoes before approaching the Chalice. These are little t’s. They are not wrong but they are local ways of expressing the faith that come from a family, a community, or a culture. It is important that we never reflect the little t’s as big T’s to others. Another example would be the frequency with which we receive communion. There are those who only receive communion a few times a year because they have been taught to do so. This is a little t with good intentions gone awry. The good intention is that we need to be prepared to receive communion but the gone awry is that we should only prepare for it a few times a year. The fact is that we should be constantly striving to have Christ in the center of our lives and constantly preparing for communion. This involves fasting, prayers and confession. How you fast, which prayers you read and how often you confess are all to be prescribed by your spiritual father. The point I am trying to make is that we must not stay to the letter of the law without understanding what the Spirit of the law or rules or guidelines that we are taught to follow truly are. Christ came to teach us and to make us understand and internalize His teachings, not to simply obey without understanding. Israel did Challenge is the Youth & Young Adult Ministries supplement to the Orthodox Observer. Articles reflect the opinion of the writers. Write to: Youth & Young Adult Ministries, Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, 83 St. Basil Rd., Garrison, New York 10524 or email:


not realize that they were becoming too legalistic by not understanding what they were doing, living to the “letter of the law” and not the spirit. The Jews of Christ’s time had so many laws that they followed but rarely understood why. They became so legalistic and weighed down by their “laws” that they could not even recognize their long awaited Messiah when He came. They actually rejected Him! The very laws that should have helped them to see blinded them. Blind faith and simply following the rules does not make for a true Christian. Everything we do as Orthodox Christians has meaning, and good meaning at that. In keeping with Holy Tradition, we should always strive to find out the meaning and reason for what we do in our Church. This way we can learn and grow from them. This is the tradition of true Orthodoxy. We should always learn and understand why we do what we do and not simply follow rules without questioning why. Never accept “because” or “etsi kanomai” (that is what we do) as an answer to the question of why we do something. The answer of “because” simply means the person you are asking either does not know the reason or has never asked the question for them. We cannot grow if we do not understand. God did not create us to be robots. He desires the heart and soul of those who follow him out of love and understanding of Him and the beautiful, meaningful teachings of the Church. Ask your priest to explain and teach you the reasons behind the “things we do” in Church and as the Church. The T-n-t challenge has been dropped. Lets become true followers of Christ and His Holy Orthodox Church because we have asked, understood and know why we do what we do.



We are making some small changes to the Challenge over the next few months. In the past articles and sessions for youth workers, parents an teens were featured. We feel we should narrow the focus of this page on teens. Please help us get the word out to teenagers and encourage them to read the CHALLENGE and send us their feedback. Each issue will have a small “parent and youth worker’s corner.” In it, we will reference a session and family activity that complements the topic available on the web. Please feel free to share any feedback with us. The “Did You Know” section is back with quick facts about our Orthodox Faith. We will make every effort to have a monthly ‘media review’ written by youth groups or teens. If your youth group is interested in writing a review, please contact our office for suggested topics and deadlines: This month check out our session and family activities on Tradition: www.goarch. org/en/archdiocese/departments/youth

Movie Review MY BIG FAT


The surprise hit of the Summer, My Big Fat Greek Wedding, entertains but it also challenges us to think about who we are as Greek Orthodox Christians in America. Our overall impression of the movie was that it was very funny and quite true. Some of us have even gone back to see the movie four or five times. We understood that the movie was made to be a comedy and in comedies certain circumstances are exaggerated a bit to be humorous. Yet, we also realized that when traditions that are a part of our Faith and our Church - which we know we should take seriously - are used for laughs it


by the Teens of Holy Cross Greek Orthodox Church and Holy Trinity Orthodox Church, Stroudsburg, Pa. baptized, the newly baptized says, “Now I am Greek”, not, “Now I am Orthodox.” We are taught by our parents and priests not to have physical relations before marriage and yet it did not seem that that was an issue for the characters in the movie. Sadly, we see this happens in our communities as well. Some of us were disappointed that there was no catechism class, no confession, and no marriage preparation with the priest. Does this happen in our churches? Do our parishes properly prepare converts? Do we have enough emphasis on Orthodoxy or more on Greekness? The movie points out to us a view of ourselves that is partially true, yet, it is not all that there is. We understood what was going on in the movie but does society around us? Some of our friends actually

The Teen Movie-Review group of Holy Cross Greek Orthodox Church and Holy Trinity Orthodox Church, Stroudsburg, Pa. with Frs. Theodore Petrides (left) and Nicholas Solak (right).

raises the question if using these things for humor is appropriate. Although My Big Fat Greek Wedding was made to be a comedy and it was funny, we see that it misconstrues some aspects of what it means to be an Orthodox Christian.

THE FUNNY TRUTH Some of us said coming out of the theatre, “Well, that pretty much is my life in a nut.” As teens with a strong sense of our Greek heritage, we laughed at how the movie brought out our idiosyncrasies. Most of us are related to someone who runs a diner or restaurant and to those who are constantly pointing out everything that is Greek. Greek School? Been there. Tell our friends words to repeat in Greek that they shouldn’t? Done that. We admit it - we are different than those around us. We are louder. We like to argue. We like to kiss and hug. We like to have parties with all our relatives on name days and holidays. Seven members of our ‘Teen Talk’ are named Nick or Nicole. (Yet, we all spell our names differently!) We are definitely encouraged to marry someone who is Greek (or Orthodox). We do have someone in the family who has a cure for all ailments, even if it is not Windex [ours are bug spray, olive oil, or ammonia]. We were laughing at situations we’ve all been in – how horribly true it all was - especially the wedding.

THE SAD TRUTH But some of us were also concerned at what we saw to be the sad truth. In particular, we were sad that after being

asked us, ‘Do people really spit on you when you get married?’ Shouldn’t we be telling them more? We have an idea for a sequel. Let the man who became Greek Orthodox discover in some way what it really meant to be baptized. Have him receive through his encounters with those in the Church a ‘revelation’ of the love and the mercy of God. Have him start going to church regularly. Maybe one day he is elected chairman of the church Food Festival and… Na to! My Big Fat Greek Food Festival. What do you think, Nia?

DID YOU KNOW? ..THE ORIGIN OF CHRISTMAS I know you all know that Christmas is one of the Great Feasts of our Church (that means big T). But did you know this date was originally a pagan holiday? This holiday was called the feast of the Sol Invictus or the feast of the Unconquerable Sun. In the fourth century, the Christian church chose December 25th as the date to celebrate the Nativity to show the True Unconquered Son. The sun was celebrated as the great light source but as Christians we know that the Son is the true light of the world. So before you “deck the halls with boughs and holly,” check out more facts about the great feast of our Lord, fa-la-la-la-la-la-lala-la. (go into the articles section and click on fasts and feast).




DIOCESE Panchiaki ‘Korais’ Society Celebrates 90th Anniversary Panchiaki Korais Society, an organization that has been donating funds to GreekAmerican schools of New York during its 90 years of existence, celebrated its anniversary and Chios’ freedom from Ottoman subjugation on Nov. 16-17 with events at Queens College, St. Nicholas Church and the Hellenic Cultural Center in Astoria. Panchiaki ‘Korais also is known for its philanthropic work in Greece. “Tonight, I am here to present the society with a recognition award from the Academy of Athens,” said speaker Antonios Harokopos, an international Byzantine scholar. His talk was presented on Saturday evening at Queens College to an audience of over 200 including Bishop Philotheos of Meloa; Fr. John Antonopoulos; Fr.Anastasios Diakovasilis, Fr. Paul Palesty, Principal Athena Kromidas of William Spyropoulos School, Professor Kallas of St. John’s University; businessmen and college students of northeastern America. A dinner dance followed with music by “Kiklos Fire.” A memorial service in honor of the

martyrs for Chios’ freedom was held at St. Nicholas Church in Flushing. In 1912, Chios regained its freedom after five centuries of foreign enslavement under the Genoese and Ottoman Turks. The island is primarily known for its predominance in the shipping industry with many prominent ship owners. Intellectuals in ancient times, including Homer, Thales and Anaxagoras and modern day scientists and scholars play prominent roles in scientific and intellectual circles. The weekend of cultural activities concluded with scholar Antonios Harokopos’ lecture “Freedom and Man” at the Hellenic Cultural Center. A lavish buffet dinner followed. “Chios loves all of you and wants all to return for a visit,” said Mr. Harokopos. All persons interested in the philanthropic work are welcomed to attend the society’s meetings at 43-15 202 St., in Bayside, N.Y. For more information, contact President Kostas Parthenis and Captain Stelios Tatsis at (718) 852-6868, (718) 932-0824 or (516) 326-6792.

Law Students Can Become Greek Scholars in Thessaloniki NEW ORLEANS — Students participating in Tulane Law School’s international summer school program in Thessalïniki have the opportunity to view Byzantine architecture, mosaics, and Roman monuments as they listen to lectures on international law. It serves as a reminder that Thessaloniki, one of the world’s most historic cities, is also at the center of world commerce. For student Shannon Wright, a lecture by Associate Justice Antonin Scalia, who participated in the program in 2001, was the most memorable moment of a summer filled with highlights. The chance to meet Greek law professors and students in Thessaloniki, says Wright, also taught her much. “The opportunity to see how other legal systems work makes you realize how unique the concept of American democracy is and that the establishment of our judicial branch was truly revolutionary,” said Wright. Classes are held at the law school of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. Law

students from the Aristotle University participate in the program and attend classes together with the American law students. The opportunity for students to work and socialize with their counterparts in another country is a highlight of the program. This year, participants will stay at the Makedonia Palace Hotel, a five-star, luxury hotel with a central location on the waterfront in Thessaloniki. This year’s program runs June 22- July 5. Deadline for registration is April 30, 2003. For more information on the Thessaloniki program, contact Janice Sayas by telephone 504.865.5981, FAX 504.862.8846 or email: Over the past quarter century, students from more than 140 law schools have attended Tulane Law School’s international summer programs, which have earned a reputation as among the finest in the country. For more information:

Panmessenian Scholarship Foundation Awards Reception ROSEMONT, Ill. — The Panmessenian Scholarship Foundation presented two young students of Messenian descent who have distinguished themselves with high scholastic achievements with the Foundation scholarships on Oct. 30. The winners were Constandina Demetra Giannakopoulos from Norridge, Ill., daughter of Kathy and Dimitrios Giannakopoulos and Jennifer Marie Sambatakos from Boston, daughter of Marylou and John Sambatakos. Each winner received $4,000 and a certificate. The Foundation’s academic committee, chaired by Dr. George Alexopoulos, made the selection under criteria established by the organization. “In a age of uncertainty, one thing is certain: the timeless values of Hellenism can help lead the world back from the brink of darkness. And we all remember how these values are best transmitted:

from the armament of education… one mind at a time,” said Chris Tomaras, Foundation board chairman, and added: “I express my sincere thanks to all those who have contributed both monetarily and morally to this effort.” The Foundation was established in 1999 by Chris Tomaras together with a number of supporters with the purpose to encourage young Greek Americans to distinguish themselves though education. Its objective is to offer five to 10 scholarships annually $5,000 each, while it continues to build a self-sustained fund that later will generate larger amounts. Guests included Metropolitan Iakovos of Krinis; Gabriel Koptsidis, consul general of Greece in Chicago and Mrs. Koptsidis; Maria Pappas, Cook County treasurer; Stavroula Skoura Theriou, coordinator of education in Chicago, and other Chicago Greek American community members.


St. Photios National Shrine Annual Pilgrimage ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. – The feast day celebration of St. Photios the Great, patron saint of the St. Photios Greek Orthodox National Shrine takes place in February with St. Photios Foundation trustees taking part in the 21st annual National Shrine Pilgrimage Feb. 1-2. Executive Director the Very Rev. Nicholas Graff, announced that this year’s pilgrimage honoree will be Archbishop Iakovos, former head of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of North and South America and shrine chairman emeritus. Archbishop Desmond Tutu of South Africa will be the keynote speaker at the Shrine Day luncheon on Feb. 2. The Shrine Day Luncheon is Feb. 2 at the Casa Monica Hotel in St. Augustine. The St. Photios Foundation Board of Trustees will meet for their annual meeting during the Pilgrimage on Saturday, Feb. 1. Matins will take place in the morning and the evening will include Great Vespers with an artoclasia service at the St. Photios Chapel. The National St. Photios Shrine Day Orthros service on Feb. 2 will followed by Archieratical Liturgy with a memorial service for Shrine founders, benefactors and trustees at the St. Photios Chapel. St. Photios the Great was ecumenical patriarch of Constantinople during the middle of the ninth century. Together with other great Fathers of the Church, Saint Photios demonstrates through his writing and his teaching that scholarship can be a valuable instrument in proclaiming and expressing the Faith of the Church. The Orthodox Church honors St.

Photios as a theologian, a supporter of missionary activity, and a defender of the Faith. Not long after his death in 897, Photios was proclaimed a Saint by the Orthodox Church and February 6 was designated as the Feast day to honor this defender of the Christian Faith and pillar of the Church. The St. Photios Greek Orthodox National Shrine, an institution of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, is dedicated to the first colony of Greek people who came to America in 1768. The Shrine consists of exhibits depicting the life of early Greeks in America and the development of the Greek Orthodox Church in America, and the St. Photios Chapel. St. Photios Greek Orthodox National Shrine is a living memorial to those first Greek settlers, and to all the Greek Orthodox pioneers whose love of freedom and desire for a better life for themselves and their children brought them to this New World. The National Shrine is located on 41 St. George Street in historic downtown St. Augustine, the nation’s oldest city. Shrine trustee and Archon Dr. Manuel Tissura of Tucker, Ga., will chair the 21 st Annual St. Photios National Shrine Pilgrimage. Information on the annual St. Photios National Shrine Pilgrimage and the National St. Photios Day Luncheon is available at the St. Photios National Shrine, P.O. Box 1960 – St. Augustine, FL 32085, Tel (904) 829-8205, or E-mail

Church Fund-raiser to Benefit Spyropoulos School, Cultural Center FLUSHING, N.Y. – St. Nicholas parish held a fund-raiser Nov. 22 in support of its William Spyropoulos Day School and honored the Atlantic Bank of New York as the school’s “Golden Star $1,000 sponsor.” The event took place at Terrace-onthe-Park in Flushing Meadows Park in Corona, featured a fashion show by “Chantilly Lace.” Among the guests were New York state Assemblyman Mike Giannaris and community leader Archie Mavromatis. Tony Barsamian was master of ceremonies. Proceeds from the event will benefit the school and a proposed cultural center. Fr. Paul Palesty, pastor, said, “We plan to build a Hellenic cultural center and ex-

pand our school. In June 2003, construction of a fozurth floor to the school building will begin. The old adjacent structure will be demolished and replaced by new buildings housing a library. In addition, a cultural center, more classrooms, gymnasium and parking facilities will be built,” he said, adding, “Our current facility does not meet the needs of the community. This is approximately a $3 million project that will be ready in two to three years.” Athena Kromidas, day school principal stated, “The William Spyropoulos School is one of the top 10 best non-public schools in New York City. This is based on state fourth-grade reading tests. We have 480 students in our school.”

Panel to Discuss Berrien Greeks’ History NEW BUFFALO, Mich. — Annunciation and St. Paraskevi Church, in cooperation with the Berrien County Historical Association, Columbia College-Chicago, will present a panel discussion “The Greeks of Berrien County” on Jan. 25. The free-of-charge program will be held at Annunciation and St. Paraskevi Church in New Buffalo. A question-andanswer period and a reception hosted by Columbia College-Chicago will follow. Panelists will include Dr. Elaine Thomopoulos, Leo Goodsell, and Donna Schiman of the Berrien County Historical Association and Dr. Erin McCarthy, Columbia College Chicago history lecturer, and three of her students. The presentation will discuss results of the Berrien County Historical Association’s “The Greeks of Berrien Country,”

an oral history and research study sponsored by the Michigan Humanities Council, an affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Co-directors Goodsell and Thomopoulos will discuss the history of the Greeks who resided in Berrien County (Southwestern Michigan) from the 1910s to the present, based on more than 20 interviews with individuals, and research into archival, church, and government records. Volunteer interviewer Donna Schiman will speak about her interviewing experiences. Dr. McCarthy, history lecturer at Columbia College-Chicago and four students from her undergraduate course “Oral History: the Art of the Interview” will speak about the Greeks who spent summers in southwestern Michigan.






St.Nektarios Relics Come to Charlotte Archbishop Welcomes SAE Delegates With an atmosphere of great love and anticipation the friends and faithful of St. Nektarios Church gathered to celebrate and offer prayers for many blessings to be bestowed upon them: by Peter Crist

“We have become like an ocean-going vessel,” reflects Fr. Steve Dalber, pastor of the four-year old parish. “The Holy Spirit has filled our sails and is directing us towards His purposes. We have willingly become deckhands on this vessel. We have joyfully undertaken the duties of maintaining this ship and its mission.”

BISHOP ALEXIOS of Atlanta (right) with Metropolitans Ephraim of Ydra (center) and Ambrosios of Patras.

St. Nektarios Church has grown as a mission parish, established on Aug. 27, 1998, out of Holy Trinity Cathedral in Charlotte. Within the four years since receiving a charter, the community has achieved many things, including the building of faith. Within that same period, the members bought 10 acres, cleared it, and built their Spiritual Life Center.

They also established a high standard of stewardship, a Sunday school and educational programs, as well as philanthropic outreach programs. The Spiritual Life Center they built, includes an interim sanctuary, as the first phase of a much larger vision. But the planning and building of the church, targeted as the next major goal to be completed in four years time, has already begun with the vision and master planning conceptual phase of work with EKONA Architecture + Planning. The parish’s beautiful 10-acre site in the south section of Charlotte, a verdant, beautiful acreage of rolling green hills is reflective of the kind of place that St. Nektarios would have loved. St. Nektarios loved to sit under the pine trees in the courtyard of Holy Trinity Convent of Aegina, which he helped to establish. He died in 1920 and Nektarios was canonized in 1961 by Patriarch Athenagoras of Constantinople. The spiritual father of the St. Nektarios parish, Bishop Alexios of Atlanta, together with its pastor, Fr. Steve Dalber, pursued the concept of having relics of St. Nektarios available and placed in the Church of St. Nektarios, which came about through the efforts of Bishop Alexios and Metropolitan Ephraim of Ydra. The sacred ceremony of the opening of the doors conducted by Bishop Alexios provided the perfect opportunity, when it was decided that the relics would be given to the Church, this sacred transition was combined with the Oct. 18 celebration of the Thyranoixia, the opening of the doors of the Spiritual Life Center occurred with the timeless tradition.

NEW YORK, — Archbishop Demetrios welcomed convention delegates from the World Council of Hellenes Abroad (SAE) on Nov. 24 at Holy Trinity Archdiocesan Cathedral where he celebrated the Divine Liturgy, with hundreds of faithful and Greek government officials attending. Sunday’s celebration also marked the observance of IOCC (International Orthodox Christian Charities) Sunday, a day designated by the Standing Conference of Canonical Orthodox Bishops in America (SCOBA) to focus on the worldwide humanitarian work of the Orthodox Church. In his capacity as SCOBA chairman, His Eminence was one of nine Orthodox primates from the SCOBA jurisdictions who signed an encyclical encouraging faithful to support the IOCC’s humanitarian mission. In considering the central role of philanthropy in the Christian life, the Archbishop offered reflections on the encyclical’s general theme taken from the Gospel reading of the day (Luke 18:18-

27), where a ruler asks Jesus, “Rabbi, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” “This question is extremely important, but perhaps sounds a bit strange in the ears of contemporary people,” remarked the Archbishop. “Contemporary people ask questions about what to do in order to have more money, what to do in order to obtain a better position, what to do in order to acquire more power, or what to do in order to gain more pleasure. But how many contemporary people ask the question about their eternal existence?” Upon the conclusion of the Divine Liturgy, His Eminence joined parishioners and SAE members in the Cathedral Hall where information concerning the IOCC’s ministry was provided. The events marked His Eminence’s return to New York after a week abroad in Greece and Turkey, where he received an honorary doctorate from the Aristotelian University of Thessaloniki School of Theology, and met with Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew at the Ecumenical Patriarchate.

Orthodox Festival Scheduled at Dallas Church DALLAS – Holy Trinity Church will host a “Festival of Orthodox Christianity” sponsored by 16 North Texas Orthodox Christian missions on Saturday, Feb. 8. Activities will include speakers, special exhibits, book sales and other events. Presenters will include Metro-

politan Isaiah, noted columnist and National Public Radio commentator Frederica Mathewes-Green and Dr. George P. Bithos, an Archon of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, and former Archdiocesan Council member. A Vespers service also will take place featuring the combined choirs of area Orthodox Churches.

C.T. Argue

MISSION PARISH GROWS Holy Apostles Greek Orthodox Church, a mission parish in Kenmore, Wash., recently grew by nine with the reception into Orthodoxy of a family of eight and another individual, three by baptism and the rest by chrismation. Shown in the picture is the parish pastor, Fr. Michael Johnson, Deacon Athanasios Tsagalakis, the new Orthodox (front row): the Pflager family and John Goodwin, and their godparents. It was a joyous occasion for the four-year-old parish near Seattle.

National Shrine Offers Church Supplies ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. — National Shrine Church Supplies serves the Orthodox Churches throughout America by offering selections of ecclesiastical supplies, Orthodox religious gifts, and traditional Greek products. All purchases help support the St. Photios National Shrine. National Shrine Church Supplies (NSCS) is a department of the St. Photios Foundation Inc., and was established 18 years ago to help the St. Photios National Shrine become a self-supportive institution of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese in America. NSCS is a dealer for half a dozen of the world’s finest candle manufacturers. Orthodox communities are urged to shop NSCS for the candles, imported incense, self-lighting charcoal, and other ecclesiastical supplies. Currently, NSCS has the Icon Holy Water Bottles available for Epiphany. The National Shrine Mutual Benefit Program involves communities in sharing of God’s grace and gifts. Through arrangements with certain suppliers, NSCS

can offer a variety of items, to churches and their bookstores for their various fundraising events. As with all purchases from the National Shrine, the proceeds of the program are used to aid in maintaining the St. Photios Shrine. The Shrine is a self-supported Orthodox institution thanks to the generosity of its benefactors, friends, communities and organizations. It is a symbol of hope that provides spiritual and cultural witness to the faithful of the Church and to the many visitors that pass through this special and historical site. The St. Photios Greek Orthodox National Shrine is located at 41 St. George St., St. Augustine, the nation’s oldest city. Contact National Shrine Church Supplies toll free, (800) 222-6727, or mail, NSCS, PO Box 1960, St. Augustine, FL 32085; fax (904) 829-8707; E-mail All proceeds go toward support of the St. Photios Greek Orthodox National Shrine.

C.T. Argue

MONK DISCUSSES PROJECT Fr. Michael Johnson (left), pastor of Holy Apostles Church in Kenmore, is shown with guest speaker Fr. Christodoulos Papadeas of the Brotherhood of St. George Greek Orthodox Mission Monastery in Denver; Sister Alina, a visiting nun from Romania working in Denver with street people there; and Deacon Athanasios Tsagalakis of Holy Apostles, who organized the five-week series of talks under the title “Experience God Project.”




ARISTOTELIAN UNIVERSITY BESTOWS HONORARY DOCTORATE UPON ARCHBISHOP DEMETRIOS THESSALONIKI. – The Aristotelian University of Thessaloniki honored Archbishop Demetrios of America “for his unceasing offering to the Church and his remarkable contribution to the doctrine of Theology” with an honorary doctorate in a grand ceremony held Nov. 19 in the university’s great amphitheater that was filled to capacity. The Aristotelian University is the largest in southeast Europe with 44 departments and more than 70,000 professors and students. The dean of the department of theology Professor Miltiadis Konstantinou called a public meeting of the academic body to confer the doctorate upon Archbishop Demetrios, “a personality of the Church and of the theological research, with a long list of academic achievements and international radiance.” The president of the university Professor Michael Papadopoulos spoke briefly on the “ethos and international recognition” of the Archbishop and commended the department of theology on their wise choice. Similarly the dean of the university Prof. Ioannis Tarnanides exalted the virtues of the recipient. The customary ‘laudatio’ speech delivered the professor of the New Testament Ioannis Karavidopoulos, who remarked on the analytical qualities of the Archbishop and his accomplishments in the field of biblical research as well as his teaching qualities and his devotion to the hieratical and pastoral duties. He called upon the good witness of many distinguished Thessalonians who knew the Archbishop since his early pupil years who would attest that “since his childhood, always with simplicity and naturalness and in all of his endeavors was the first among the first!” The ceremony of the degree conferral followed. Archbishop Demetrios, visibly moved by the high honor from the highest academic institution of his hometown, referred to his old bonds with the institution since the years he attended the experimental school of the university and later on during the years that his brother was dean of the university’s medical school. In his acceptance comments the Archbishop spoke on the pastoral challenges of the multicultural society in America and the life of the orthodox and the Church in such a society. He said that the bonds of the Greek Orthodox Church in America with the Ecumenical Patriarchate and the Orthodox people around the world are a reassuring factor. “It is an obligation of our Church to be in a continuous mode of mission... and think the unthinkable,” he said as he made reference to a passage from St. Paul.

Theology Graduates Earlier in the day, Archbishop Demetrios, responding to an invitation by the Department of Theology and its graduate class, officiated at their commencement ceremonies and in his address called the graduates “colleagues” as he spoke about the need for dynamic theological witness in the modern world of globalization. The new theologians and their families were eagerly listening and were only too glad to meet “someone we had admired and had known only from reading his works...” they said.

Divine Liturgy at St. Demetrios On Sunday Nov. 17, Archbishop Demetrios celebrated Divine Liturgy at the historic cathedral of St. Demetrios. The church’s main level and two balconies were filled to capacity– an estimated 10,000 faithful.

(clockwise from top) DIVINE Liturgy at St. Demetrios Cathedral in Thessaloniki. HISTORIC St. Demetrios basilica. ARISTOTELIAN University president Professor Michael Papadopoulos presents the Archbishop with a plaque as a momentum.

Thousands more were patiently waiting on line to venerate the Icon of Panagia of Jerusalem and a portion of the Holy Cross, which were brought to Greece from Jerusalem for a brief stay. It was estimated that during the two weeks the icon and the ‘holy wood’ were in Thessaloniki, more than 2 million persons venerated it. Fr. Nicholas Triantafilou president of HC/HC, Fr. Emmanuel Clapsis dean of Holy Cross School of Theology and Deacon Panteleimon Papadopoulos accompanied the Archbishop to Thessaloniki.

ATTENDING the ceremony with His Eminence are his brother Dr. Antonios Trakatellis, Fr. Nicholas Triantafilou president of HC/HC, Fr. Emmanuel Clapsis dean of Holy Cross School of Theology and Deacon Panteleimon Papadopoulos.

Orthodox Observer - December 2002