On the weekend of January 1-2, 2011, the faithful of Christ the Savior Orthodox Church welcomed His Beatitude Metropolitan Jonah
, together with special guests and visitors, for the 10th anniversary celebration of the Mission's founding.
On Saturday evening, the Great Vespers with Litiya was served, followed by a meal for those in attendance. Met. Jonah then concluded the evening by leading a spiritual discussion with a question / answer period.
The Divine Liturgy, attended by numerous parishioners, friends, and visitors, was punctuated with the Chrismation of Lee Gregory Krempel and the enrollment of eleven new catechumens from the Hageman and Morsey families. We offer our heartfelt congratulations to them all on this special day!
As is the Mission's custom, we opened the new civil year with the tradition of St. Basil's bread
. This year, Gabriela Jones, Wayne Hajos, and Andrei Labai received the coins, together with the special blessing of St. Basil and the commission to continue his spirit of charitable giving to those in need.
Following the liturgical celebrations, everyone made their way to the Lighthouse Sound Restaurant
for a festive luncheon. During the meal, His Beatitude offered words of congratulations and encouragement to all those present, as well as inscribed Orthodox Study Bibles to Lee Gregory and the Hageman and Morsey families. He, likewise, presented Olya, the meal's organizer, with an icon of the Mother of God holding the Christ Child. We extend our thanks for Fr. John Stavropolous, Presbytera Eleni, and their family from St. George's Greek Orthodox Church
in Ocean City, MD, for joining us for this celebratory luncheon. We also thank Fr. John for serving on Saturday evening with us.
A special announcement was then made concerning a substantial donation to the Mission. An anonymous donor has generously come forward offering $20,000 in the form of a matching donation. $10,000 was given upfront, and the other $10,000 would be matched accordingly, as donations come in during the 2011 calendar year. May the Lord bless this donor's generosity and anonymity! It is requested that those wishing to make a donation towards this opportunity, would earmark their checks to the “Building Fund” – the purpose for which these funds have been solely designated.
The historic weekend then came to a close with a final prayer of thanksgiving to God for all His earthly and spiritual gifts. Truly it is by His divine love and power that all good things are accomplished. May He be praised both now and forever, and unto the ages of ages!
Finally, we ask that all the founders, benefactors, beautifiers, supporters, members, visitors, and everyone who has worked together with the Lord over these past 10 years for the building up of His Church, rejoice together with us! Wherever you may be, near or far, with the Mission or with other faithful communities, among the living or those who have already departed to eternal life, you are all appreciated and loved! May the Lord's blessings be upon you!