April 1, 2017

Beloved Faithful,

The month of April finds us in the final stretch of the Great Lent.  It is a time to evaluate and intensify our fasting.  In addition to following the dietary guidelines, we are directed to increase our prayer, give alms, and do good works.  By addressing multiple aspects of our life, this trifold approach is meant to keep us as vigilant as the wise virgins in the Gospel according to St. Matthew who were prepared when the Bridegroom came.

As a part of this process we will gather after the Divine Liturgy on the Saturday of Lazarus to have breakfast together and to prepare the Church for Palm Sunday and Holy Week.  On Palm Sunday there will be a community luncheon sponsored by the Choir after Divine Liturgy.  On Holy Thursday, all of our youth, and those who are young at heart, are invited to our all-night lock-in after the evening service.  This event will feature opportunities for prayer, discussion, and fun activities to help us in our spiritual journey.

We fast in preparation, but at the Resurrection we feast.  Join us for the Feast of feasts, the Matins and Liturgy of Pascha, beginning at 11:00 PM on Holy Saturday and continuing through the night.  Come, receive the Light from the unwaning Light, Jesus Christ, and stay with us for the Divine Liturgy to receive not only a flame that represents Him, but the Lord Himself in the form of Holy Communion.  The celebration will continue with our annual fellowship meal in the Olympia Hall after the Liturgy has concluded.

As the Paschal season continues, so does our feasting.  On Saturday, April 22, Mary Papazis and Nancy Russon will be honored at the Annual Metropolis of Pittsburgh St. Photios Awards.  We are happy to thank Mary and Nancy for their tireless service to our community through this distinction.

On Sunday, April 30th we will have a celebration marking the centennial anniversary of the groundbreaking of our parish.  Our GAPA Lodge has planned an indoor picnic from 12:00 PM to 3:00 PM that will be fun for the entire family.  The afternoon will include games sponsored by the various organizations of our community, music, and, of course, plenty of food!

As St. John Chrysostom wrote, “The table is richly laden…let no one go away hungry.”  Join us as we prepare ourselves for the Lord’s Resurrection, and as we feast as a parish family.

 

With love in Christ,

 

Fr. Constantine Kokanos