A New Ecclesiastical Year begins!
“You who created all things in Your infinite wisdom, and set the times by Your own authority, grant Your Christian people victories. Blessing our comings and goings throughout this year, guide our works according to Your divine will.”
~Kontakion for the New Ecclesiastical Year
My Dear Spiritual Ohana,
By the time you receive this edition of the Shorelines, our 2015 Greek Festival would already have made history! Therefore, as I write this column beforehand, I thank all of you who have made it possible and put forth every effort to make it a great success, including our Chairpersons, our host of volunteers, those in the forefront and those behind the scenes! Hopefully, the weather has worked in our favor, especially now that we are in the midst of the Hurricane Season and are experiencing "El Nino’s" odd weather patterns and inconsistencies!
Being human beings living within the created confines of time, September marks the beginning of the New Ecclesiastical Year, according to the calendar of the Church. For us, as the Body of Christ, His Church, September marks the beginning of a new chapter in many of the ministries of our parish and Cathedral.
Our Sunday School begins with the Blessing of the Waters on Sunday, September 6th. Also our New Philoptochos Board will take the "Oath of Office" on the same day. Our Adult Choir will resume singing the responses, praises and entreaties to our Mighty God in the Divine Liturgy. Our Nisiotes Dancers (formerly known as Nisiopoula) and our Aloha Youth Choir will start their full schedule of practices and preparations for FDF which will, once again, take place in the city of Anaheim in 2016. Our Youth Group is in the process of having its first outing in October. I look forward to leading our Adult Religious Education on the "Ten Point Program for Orthodox Life." Our Cathedral anticipates the implementation of two programs for our Metropolis Strategic Planning this Fall. So, as you read, we have many activities under way!
In addition to what is taking place, as we begin the New Ecclesiastical Year this September, we also continue and conclude the remaining months of 2015,with our 50th Anniversary Celebration! On the weekend of October 2nd thru October 4th, we will have the highlight of our celebrations, which will be our “50th Anniversary Gala Weekend Celebration” with all of you and our distinguished guests. Please see the enclosed flier with the details of this special weekend. If you haven’t already, please complete your reservations for the Saturday 50th Anniversary Gala Luncheon and return them to the Church as soon as possible if you plan to go to this. If you did not receive the invitation for this in the mail, please feel free to call the office and you will be directed to contact the appropriate chairpersons for this event. Also, if you would like to be included in our 50th Anniversary Commemorative Book, please fill out and return our Ad Contract included as an insert in this month’s publication.
As we begin this exciting Ecclesiastical Year, we must always remember to put our trust and all our hope in our Lord and Creator to be with us and help us face and overcome the challenges placed before us in our daily lives. If we rely entirely on ourselves and our own strengths, we can expect to falter. But when we open up the doors of our hearts to the Lord's help with all our hope in Him, we can surely experience victories, overcome life’s many challenges, and remain in His Comforting, Assuring, Merciful and Loving Presence, as He so wills.
With Love in Christ,
Floros & Lauros the Monk-martyrs of Illyria; Hermos the Martyr; Leontus the martyr; John & George, Patriarchs of Constantinople; Relics of Arsenios the Righteous of Paros; Afterfeast of the Dormition of our Most Holy Lady the Theotokos and Ever Virgin Mary; Constantine the New Martyr of Capua; Matthew the New Martyr of Gerakari