Conciliar Media Ministries under the direction of CEO John Maddex coordinated an evangelism project in Oklahoma City June 19 and 20 with funding provided by the Antiochian Archdiocese as well as Charles Ajalat of the Orthodox Vision Foundation. Central Oklahoma was saturated with a four-week media blitz that included newpaper, radio, television, billboards, yard signs, and internet advertising. The advertising campaign was led by St. Elijah members Richard Yeager, John and Kathi Larson, and Mark Loftis.
Following last week's Damascus journey of five Archdiocese bishops, Matthew Namee, host of the new Ancient Faith Radio podcast American Orthodox History, spent some time talking with His Grace Bishop Basil of the Diocese of Wichita and Mid-America. "We have a father in God who loves us," says Bishop BASIL of His Beatitude Patriarch IGNATIUS IV, "a father in God who knows us by name." Listen to the 10 minute interview here.
For more details on the American Orthodox History podcast, including the introductory program on the importance of learning about the history of the Church on this continent, click here.
Holy Week services at St. George Church in El Paso, Texas were featured in a news segment on local station ABC Channel 7 in April 2009. ABC Channel 7 received awards and drew excellent reviews for this feature.
Bishop BASIL writes:
|6th Century Church of St. George in Izraa|
Your prayers are requested for our brothers Fr. Richard Petranek of St. Paul/Houston, TX and Fr. Matthew MacKay of St. Joseph/Houston, TX, who will be heading to the Middle East this Sunday, May 24, 2009, with a number of our DOWAMA young adults for our Diocese's first College Mission Trip to the Archdiocese of Bosra-Hauran in southwestern Syria where they will visit and work with Metropolitan SABA and his flock.
In addition to several work projects, the group will also make pilgrimage to many of the most revered holy sites within our Patriarchate, including the Patriarchal Cathedral and residence in Damascus, where they will be received by our Father-in-God Patriarch IGNATIUS IV; the house chapel of St. Ananias where the Holy Apostle Paul was baptized; the women's monasteries of Our Lady in Saydnaya and St. Thekla in Ma'aloula; the men's monastery of St. George al-Humayrah in the "Valley of the Christians;" and the reliquary shrine of the Martyr and Unmercenary Healer St. Julian (Mar Ilyán) in Homs. The group will return to the U.S. in time to attend our Parish Life Conference in Wichita where they will share their experiences with us!
The room registrations continue to flood in to the Wichita Airport Hilton for the DOWAMA Parish Life Conference. Our group block has been reopened, so you should not have any problems registering by the May 27th deadline. Now we need to ask you to please let us hear from you with your conference registration form so that the events you want to attend can be guaranteed for you.
Teens are reminded to bring a pair of socks if you plan to bowl at your outing on Friday. Don’t forget to mail your release form with your registration form.
The service project that the OCF and 20/40 Group will be participating in is an outdoors event at The Treehouse, so you will need appropriate work clothes.
We look forward to seeing all of you real soon!
--Your Parish Life Conference Committee
by Dn. Mark Berge
Photos by Kirk Tatusko and Ron Brotzman
On February 14, 2009, the parish of St. Luke Orthodox Church in Lafayette, Colorado was honored to welcome His Grace Bishop Basil for the service of ground-breaking at the site of our new temple.
Our parish has been blessed with increasing membership since its founding in 1991. The current temple, seating 200, was built in 1995 with a subsequent expansion in 1998. We tried to expand our church again, but this proved impossible given the county's firm rules on development and our lack of sufficient land. With steady growth in new members our beloved Bishop Basil challenged us in October of 2007 to move to a new location and erect a beautiful temple with seating for 400 to 450 people. We were frankly astounded when he went on to predict that such a task could be done in about two years if God blessed it. Our priest Father David Mustian had been encouraging us to pray about our space needs for several years. With the core of a building committee already in place we were eager to try to meet our bishop’s challenge.
Update: In lieu of Metropolitan SABA we are pleased to announce our keynote session "The Hauran Connection" which will be led by Fr. Richard Petranek and Fr. Matthew McKay who have just returned from a service trip to Hauran.
Bishop BASIL writes:
Metropolitan SABA of the Archdiocese of Bosra-Hauran has recently informed me that, due to circumstances beyond his control, he will be unable to attend our Parish Life Conference in Wichita this June 10th-13th. His Eminence will be greatly missed.
Beloved and Christ-loving Clergy, Monastics and Laity of the Diocese of Wichita and Mid-
I embrace and greet you with a holy kiss in the Name of the Resurrected
Theanthropos Jesus Christ, and, together with you and Orthodox Christians throughout
the world, I joyfully proclaim that Christ is risen! Χριστὸς ἀνέστη! ! ألمسيح قام Христос
Воскресе! Hristos a înviat! Cristo ha resucitado!
On this radiant Feast of feasts I share with you, my dearly beloved spiritual children,
the following soul-profiting words excerpted from a Paschal homily of our father among
the saints Gregory the Theologian (330-390):
This is the Day of Resurrection! Let us all be united in heart, and let us give glory to God on this
solemn festival. Let us address as brothers even those who hate us, as also those who love us, and have
helped us, and have suffered anything on our behalf. Let us forgive all things in the Resurrection ...
Yesterday I was crucified with Christ; today I am glorified with Him. Yesterday I died with Him;
today I am given life with Him. Yesterday I was buried with Him; today I rise again with Him.
Today let us offer unto Him, Who has suffered and Who has risen for us, ourselves, which to God is
the most precious and becoming of gifts.
Wishing you and your families a glorious Paschal season perfumed with the sweet
fragrance of good works and holiness, looking forward to being with you all at our
Diocesan Family Reunion in Wichita this June 10th - 13th, and assuring you of my
continued love, prayers and blessings, I remain
Your Father in the Risen Christ,
+ Bishop Basil