St. Philip’s Nativity Fast: Pastoral Letter of the Permanent Conference of Ukrainian Orthodox Bishops Beyond the Borders of Ukraine

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Simply put, our goal during this Pre-Nativity Fast is to mature in Christ, to attain to spiritual quality and excellence in our profession of the Orthodox Christian Faith, to invite Christ Jesus into our very being, to proclaim to an increasingly nominal and apathetic Christian society that, which it would rather not hear:  “I bring you tidings of great joy…a Savior is born…He is Christ the Lord!” and He can be found in the hearts and homes of those who proclaim Him by their willingness to “let our light so shine before men, that they might see our good works and give glory to our Father Who is in Heaven” [Matthew 5:16].

Invest in the Future of the Church: Support St. Sophia Seminary on GivingTuesday, November 28, 2017 – Зробіть свій внесок в майбутнє Церкви: Підтримайте Свято-Софіївську Семінарію у ві?

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Permanent Conference of Ukrainian Orthodox Bishops Beyond the Borders of Ukraine: Reflection on St. Philip’s Fast

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Simply put, our goal during this Pre-Nativity Fast is to mature in Christ, to attain to spiritual quality and excellence in our profession of the Orthodox Christian Faith, to invite Christ Jesus into our very being, to proclaim to an increasingly nominal and apathetic Christian society that, which it would rather not hear:  “I bring you tidings of great joy…a Savior is born…He is Christ the Lord!” and He can be found in the hearts and homes of those who proclaim Him by their willingness to “let our light so shine before men, that they might see our good works and give glory to our Father Who is in Heaven” [Matthew 5:16].

Support St. Sophia Seminary on Giving Tuesday

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Invest in the Future of the Church: Support St. Sophia Seminary on Giving Tuesday, November 28

Thanksgiving Greetings

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JOHNSTOWN, PA — It is proper and just to sing to You, to bless You, to praise You, to thank You, to worship You in every place of Your kingdom, for You are God, ineffable, inconceivable, invisible, incomprehensible, ever existing yet ever the same, You and Your only-begotten Son and Your Holy Spirit. You brought us out of non-existence into being and, when we had fallen, You raised us up again, and left nothing undone to lead us to heaven and to bestow upon us Your future kingdom. For all this we give thanks to You and to Your only-begotten Son and Your Holy Spirit, for all that we know and do not know

Support OCF on Giving Tuesday

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JOHNSTOWN, PA [Diocesan Chancery] — With the Thanksgiving and Nativity Fast Season upon us, the Diocesan Chancery is pleased to provide you information regarding the Orthodox Christian Fellowship’s (“OCF”) Student Leadership Board’s 2017 Giving Tuesday Challenge. Giving Tuesday is November 28, 2017, which is less than a week away. As most of you know, OCF is our Orthodox Church’s campus ministry. You can visit OCF’s website at www.ocf.net to learn more about all of OCF’s programs and events.

Recently in 2017, I agreed to join OCF’s Board of Directors, the governing body of OCF. In addition to OCF’s Board of Directors, OCF has a Student Leadership Board. OCF’s student leaders comprise the Student Leadership Board and develop and plan leadership training, programs, regional and district retreats for our Orthodox college students. All across the United States and Canada, OCF, through its Student Leadership Board, hosts retreats for college students.

“Lord, it is good to be here!”

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Encyclical of Archbishop Demetrios for Thanksgiving Day – November 23 2017

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Protocol No. 186/17

 November 23, 2017 – Thanksgiving Day

 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 Distinguished Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, the Day, Afternoon, and Church Schools, the Philoptochos Sisterhoods, the Youth, the Hellenic Organizations, and the entire Greek Orthodox Family in America

 Beloved Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

 On this day of Thanksgiving we are blessed as Orthodox Christians to offer gratitude to God, our Creator, who gives us life and has revealed His amazing and transforming love for us.  He is the source and foundation of our thanksgiving, as we respond to His love and presence offering our praise and adoration.  Our worship affirms the words of the Psalmist as we come into His presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise to Him with songs of praise! (Psalm 95:2)

 We offer to the world a witness of the true nature of thanksgiving.  In the Holy Eucharist, identified by name as an act of thanksgiving, we show our gratitude through our faith in His grace and our obedience to His will.  We approach and receive the most holy and sacred Body and Blood of Christ with contrite and gracious hearts, and we are filled with joy, hope, and assurance.  The celebration of the Holy Eucharist in our communal worship reveals the transformative power of gratitude.

 When we express our gratitude to God, when we offer Him thanksgiving and call upon His name, we show humanity the power of grace to turn despair into hope, to change fear into courage, to calm animosity with compassion, and heal what is broken.  As we experience in the Holy Eucharist, our communion with God leads us to an awareness of the needs of others and how we might serve them as an expression of our gratitude to Him.

 The Thanksgiving Day holiday is a unique time in this country for us to reflect on the role of thanksgiving in our faith and in our lives.  It is a time to be thankful for the many blessings we have received as we are mindful of the One who blesses us with life and grace.  It is a day to call all people to affirm the power of gratitude, a call we make consistently through our worship and service.  It is a day to extend grace to more and more people so that thanksgiving may increase to the glory of God. (II Corinthians 4:15)

 May the blessings of God’s grace be with you and your families as you gather on this day of Thanksgiving.  May your hearts be filled with joy, and may this be a time of sharing and giving in gratitude so that lives will be transformed and many more will join us in proclaiming blessing and glory and wisdom and thanksgiving and honor and power and might to our God for ever and ever! (Revelation 7:12)

 With paternal love in Christ,

 † DEMETRIOS

Archbishop of America

Council of Bishops of the UOC of the USA: Blessed Thanksgiving!

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As 2017 year of our Lord draws to a close, and the sacred Season of St. Philip’s (Pre-Nativity) Fast about to begin, we in the U.S. come again to a peculiar weekend. Our national day of Thanksgiving is perhaps the only remaining civic holiday with an overtly religious purpose: the entire nation is meant to pause and thank God for the blessings bestowed upon it. Of course, many will spend this day without any thought of God whatsoever; since they don’t think of God at other times, why should this day be any different? This is a day for the people of God to delight in, however. We are a Eucharistic people; thanksgiving is our way of life. We are never more truly ourselves than when we are conscious of our dependence upon God, and God’s loving providence at work in our lives.

Christmas Ornaments for the Consistory Office

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