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March

Events Are In Sequence - Please Scroll Down

Sunday Of The Cross

Cross adorned with flowers

The third Sunday of Lent is the half way point of Great Lent. On this Sunday a flower decorated cross is displayed in the center of the sanctuary during the Liturgy. At the point in the Liturgy when normally "Holy God" is sung it is replaced with "Before Your Cross we bow down and worship You." During this hymn three prostrations are made. They signify our devotion to God and that we have accepted His cross. It is also given as a help to fight off the attacks of the Devil who during Lent wants us to fail in our fast and it helps us to keep our heart pointed toward the Cross and Christ's victory over death at Pascha.

Parishioners bow down before the Cross

Parishioners make prostrations before the Cross.

Parishioners bow down before the Cross

Following the Liturgy, parishioners venerate the Cross.

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We invite all to join us at St. Luke's on our lenten journey to Pascha. If you are unable to attend in person please visit "Journey To Pascha" on our website to follow along and for more information on the faith and services. Each year we try to update this part of our site with new pictures so you can look ahead or follow along as we progress towards Pascha.

Annunciation Liturgy

Father Andrew blesses parishioneer.

The Feast of the Annunciation breaks into the Lenten cycle because it is one of the 12 major feast days of the church and is part of the Nativity cycle. March 25th is nine months before Christmas. It commemorates the angel Gabriel visiting the virgin Mary and announcing to her that she was about to become pregnant by the Holy Spirit. Since it is a feast day the fasting rules are lifted slightly. For Greek Americans this is a special day because this is the day that Greece became independent from the Ottoman Turkish empire in 1821 - 1827.

We invite all to join us at St. Luke's on our lenten journey to Pascha. If you are unable to attend in person please visit "Journey To Pascha" on our website to follow along and for more information on the faith and services. Each year we try to update this part of our site with new pictures so you can look ahead or follow along as we progress towards Pascha.

St. Lukes Hosts Mission Vespers

Scene From St. Lukes Hosts Mission Vespers

Each year the Chicago Deanery gather at different parishes for a Sunday evening Lenten Vesper service. This year St. Luke hosted one of the five services. Fr. Thomas Mueller from Milwaukee Wisconsin, our Dean, was the celebrant. St. Luke's choir under the leadership of Paulette gave the responses.

Scene From St. Lukes Hosts Mission Vespers

At the end of the service, our choir sang the Lenten hymns and then prostrations where made during the reading of the prayer of St. Ephram.

Scene From St. Lukes Hosts Mission Vespers

Fr. Gregory Brunner from St. Nicholas in Joliet gave the homily on Freedom from anger from the Ladder of Divine Ascent by St. John Climacus.

Scene From St. Lukes Hosts Mission Vespers

All gathered for fellowship and a light evening dinner. Angela is serving the food while Luba is supervising. We welcome all of our guests from area parishes.

Akathist Service

Father Harrison reads prayers in front of the Icon of the Virgin.

In some Orthodox Churches of the Russian Tradition the Presanctified Liturgy is celebrated both on Wednesday and Friday. Churches of the Greek Tradition celebrate the Akathist (salutations) to the Virgin Mary of Friday. An Akathist Hymn is a liturgical prayer of praise written about Christ, a certain saint or a need such as thanksgiving. The Akathist Hymn to the Virgin Mary portrays her as a compassionate mother who cares for us through her prayers. During Lent this is necessary because of the spiritual battle which we have undertaken.

We invite all to join us at St. Luke's on our lenten journey to Pascha. If you are unable to attend in person please visit "Journey To Pascha" on our website to follow along and for more information on the faith and services. Each year we try to update this part of our site with new pictures so you can look ahead or follow along as we progress towards Pascha.

Presantified Liturgy

Parishioners prostrate before the Light Of Christ.

On Wednesdays during Lent the Presanctified Liturgy is celebrated. The word Presanctified refers to Holy Communion which has been consecrated on the Sunday before and distributed at the Presanctified Liturgy. One of the special features of this liturgy is the solemn blessing with a single lighted candle by the Priest who announces "The Light of Christ illumines all!" The faithful make a prostration. The scriptural readings are from Genesis, Exodus, Isaiah and Proverbs signifying the preparatory nature of this service.

Fr. Andrew will be teaching from the Lenten Synaxarion , which is a volume of sermons written by the Church Fathers that describe the significance of each Presantified Liturgy and its role in our Lenten preparations for Pascha

Following the service all are invited to join in a pot luck lenten meal.

We invite all to join us at St. Luke's on our lenten journey to Pascha. If you are unable to attend in person please visit "Journey To Pascha" on our website to follow along and for more information on the faith and services. Each year we try to update this part of our site with new pictures so you can look ahead or follow along as we progress towards Pascha.

Sunday of Orthodoxy Service

Scene from Sunday Of Orthodoxy Service.

The Sunday of Orthodoxy Vespers was held at St. Georges Antiochian Orthodox in Cicero IL. Over 60 clergy from all jurisdictions of greater Chicago participated.

Scene from Sunday Of Orthodoxy Service.

The homily was given by Fr. John Behr Dean of St. Vladimir’s Seminary. The Responses by were sung by the Pan Orthodox Choir of Chicago.

The service concluded with the grand procession of Holy Icons and the reading of the Synodicon of Orthodoxy. Fr. Andrew processed carrying the Icon of St. Innocent Evangelizer and Apostle to America.

Scene from Sunday Of Orthodoxy Service.

Four bishops and Metropolitan Isaiah of the Greek Archdiocese of America were in attendance.

Sunday of Orthodoxy

Scene from Sunday Of Orthodoxy.

On the first Sunday of Lent, Orthodox Christians celebrate the official declaration of the 7th Ecumenical Council 787AD that the veneration of Icons is not the worship of images as the 2nd commandment describes. To celebrate the event, the parishioners of St. Luke held a procession of Icons, ( See Iconography) while the choir sang the hymn of the event. At its conclusion the proclamation of Orthodoxy and Creed were recited.

Proclamation of Orthodoxy:

As the Prophets beheld, as the Apostles have taught, as the Church has received, as the Teachers have dogmatized, as the Universe has agreed, as grace has shown forth, as Truth has revealed, as Falsehood has been dissolved, as Wisdom has presented, as Christ awarded; Thus we declare, thus we assert, thus we preach Christ Our True God, and honor His Saints in words, in writings, in thoughts, in sacrifices, in Churches, in Holy Icons; On the one hand worshipping and reverencing Christ as God and Lord, and on the other, honoring the Saints as true servants of the same Lord of All, and offering them proper veneration.

This is the Faith of the Apostles,
This is the Faith of the Fathers,
This is the Faith of the Orthodox,
This is the Faith which has established the Universe.

Scene from Sunday Of Orthodoxy.

Scene from the procession.

Scene from Sunday Of Orthodoxy.

Scene from the procession.

We invite all to join us at St. Luke's on our lenten journey to Pascha. If you are unable to attend in person please visit "Journey To Pascha" on our website to follow along and for more information on the faith and services. Each year we try to update this part of our site with new pictures so you can look ahead or follow along as we progress towards Pascha.

The Reading of the Canon of St. Andrew of Crete

Father Harrison reads the Canon of St. Andrew of Crete.

A canon is a liturgical poem divided into verses with a refrain. The Canon of St. Andrew, written in the 7th century, is divided into four sections, which are read on Monday through Thursday during Compline of the first week of Lent. St. Andrew, in composing the canon, traces the lives of people in the Bible who lived according to God's commandments with those who failed. By doing this, St. Andrew reminds us of our failings and need of repentance. An example of a verse with refrain is the following:

Solomon was carried away by gratification of his lust. Alas, he who loved wisdom now makes love to prostitutes and finds himself estranged from God. But in your every thought you have imitated him, O my soul, through your disgraceful love of luxury.

Refrain: Have mercy on me O God, have mercy on me.

During the reading the faithful make prostrations (a bow with the head to the floor)

Scene from the Canon of St. Andrew of Crete.

This year we were very fortunate to have Bishop Elect Fr. Matthias join in celebrating the service. Here he addresses the congregation expressing his desire to be a "Good Shepard" and meet as many of his "Sheep" as possible.

Scene from the Canon of St. Andrew of Crete.

Father Andrew welcomed Bishop Elect Fr. Matthias and invited everyone for a lenten meal and fellowship.

Scene from the Canon of St. Andrew of Crete.

The meal is blessed.

Scene from the Canon of St. Andrew of Crete.

Bishop Elect Fr. Matthias spoke with many of the parishioners during dinner. We thank him for coming and sharing this day with us.

We invite all to join us at St. Luke's on our lenten journey to Pascha. If you are unable to attend in person please visit "Journey To Pascha" on our website to follow along and for more information on the faith and services. Each year we try to update this part of our site with new pictures so you can look ahead or follow along as we progress towards Pascha.

Children's Sermon And Retreat

Scene from 
Children's Sermon And Retreat.

The children's sermon was about forgiveness. Fr. Andrew explained in order to receive forgiveness from God we need first to forgive our brother, sister and friends. He asked for examples of behaviors which need forgiveness, like being called dumb.

Scene from 
Children's Sermon And Retreat.

He then wrote the word on a papers with three kinds of pens, indelible, lead pencil, and washable ink as examples of the way to forgive. The only real forgiveness is when we forgive and forget and be friends again.

Scene from 
Children's Sermon And Retreat.

The Church school gathered after the Liturgy for a special program about forgiveness with discussions and craft projects.


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