Events Are In Sequence - Please Scroll Down
Events Are In Sequence - Please Scroll Down
OCCA Sanctity Of Life Service
The priests representing the 80 Orthodox Parishes in the greater Chicago area processed into St. Georges Antiocian Orthodox Church in Cicero for the second annual prayer service for the Sanctity of Life. Click Here to view the text of this service.
Fr. Nicholas Jonas of Sts. Constantine and Helen parish and Proto-deacon Robert Northrop of St. Panteleimon were the main celebrants.
Bishop Dimitri of the Greek Orthodox Metropolitanate of Chicago was the attending hierarch. He is reading the prayer for the sanctity of life. Click Here to view the text of this prayer.
Fr. Rihani, the spiritual leader of Orthodox Christians for Life, gave the homily. In his homily he pointed out the change that is going on in America supporting the sanctity of life by the next generation. The numbers attending the march for life have been increasing each year to a record of 200,000 this year.
After the service all gathered for refreshments, fellowship and a lecture by Frederica Matthews-Green.
Frederica Matthews Green's lecture centered on her experience as a militant feminist who changed her opinions about the practice of abortion. She gave a survey of the writings of Orthodox Church Fathers on abortion. She concluded her remarks with suggestions for Orthodox Christians in support the pro life issues.
St. Luke Parish Observes Sanctity Of Life Sunday
For the celebration of Sanctity of Life Sunday, Fr. Andrew presented an Icon of the Visitation of Mary to Elizabeth given to St. Luke by Frederica Matthews Green. The Icon shows Christ in Mary's womb blessing St. John the Baptist.
Suzy, a new mom and member of St. Luke told about her experience with doctors who recommended she have an abortion because one of her twins had spina bifita.
Suzy and husband Jon with her twins Naomi and Alexander. Alexander who was born with spina bifita has handicaps but with God's help will grow up and have a normal life. Today with modern medicine, most children with this handicap can survive and thrive.
Fr. Andrew presented Frederica Matthews Green with an Icon of St. Luke to honor her visit to Chicago.
God Grant Fr. Andrew Many Years
This Sunday we celebrated Fr. Andrew's birthday. The congregation sang "Many Years" and Fr. was presented with this cake.
Fr. Andrew cutting his cake.
Church School Lesson
Here is an example of the great job our church school teachers do. A preschool class project to celebrate Zacchaeus Sunday. Zacchaeus climbed the tree to see Jesus. When you pull on the string the figure goes up into the tree.
The Great Blessing Of Water
This year, because of the snow and sub zero weather, the outdoor blessing of water at a water source took place at the end of January. This was the first Sunday the parish was able to gather in the snow covered courtyard.
Father Andrew blesses the water.
The baptismal font is filled with water from the well and the overflow is drained back into the well. When the words: "by water and fire Elijah over came the priests of Baal", lighted candles are immersed into the water.
Father Andrew plunges the Holy Cross into the water while the Choir sang the hymn of the blessing. "When You O Lord were baptized in the Jordan....."
The Holy Cross is then elevated. This is repeated three times.
Our bell ringers on duty in the bell tower. They ring the bells at the appropriate times during the service.
The service ends with the blessing of the people with the newly blessed Holy Water. The service signifies Christ's sanctification of the cosmos.
New Year's Celebration
St. Luke Parish held it's annual New Year's Celebration this week.
A buffet was served, the main course being all you can eat ribs and chicken.
This is a family event and games were set up for the young children in the old basement area.
Our St. Luke Band was not availiable to play this year, but we did have a disc jockey to provide music.
These two young ladies were our most energic dancers and set the tone for everyone else.
Parishioners from Sts. Peter and Paul Parish joined us for our celebration and also took to the dance floor.
Our thanks go out to our Community Team and for all who worked so hard for us to have such a wonderful evening.
Children's Sermon And St. Basil's Bread
The children gathered around while Fr. Andrew blessed the loaf of St. Basil bread to commemorate the feast of St. Basil. Baked into the loaf is the traditional gold coin.
After the blessing Father gave his monthly children's sermon, This months sermon was about the meaning of the celebration of our Lords Baptism and the manifestation of the Holy Trinity.
He used the three states of water: liquid, ice and steam to explain the trinity.
The children received from Father the cut and wrapped St. Basil's bread.
The Choir was next to receive the blessed bread.
Lydia found the gold coin in her bread as she began to eat and drink at our after Liturgy fellowship hour.