News and Articles


Antiochian Village Hosts Pan Orthodox Men's Retreat

Certified counselor, businessman, active layman and father of three Paul Karos, was the featured speaker at this year's Antiochian Village Men's Retreat, themed "Exploring the Passions that Drive us and the Virtues that can Save us." Mr. Karos drew from both his professional life as a financial analyst and investment banker, as well as his life as an active Orthodox Christian at St. Mary Greek Orthodox Church in Minneapolis, to lead discussions about the role and impact of the passions, and the meaning of spiritual discipline and repentance. Attendees participated in a liturgical cycle of services, enjoyed a barbecue cookout at the Pavilion, and enjoyed three separate sessions presented by Paul Karos. 

Men's Retreat at Antiochian Village + June 11-13, 2010

Pan-Orthodox Men's Retreat

Exploring the Passions that Drive Us and the Virtues that Can Save Us

With Guest Speaker Paul Karos
June 11-13, 2010 + Antiochian Village

All men, single, married, and of all ages are welcome to attend this Pan-Orthodox Retreat. Group discount available for groups of 10 or more. Bring your parish men’s group!

Questions? Call 724.238.3677 x425 Or e-mail barli@antiochianvillage.org.

For more information, schedule or to register, please download the event brochure (PDF).

Guest speaker Paul Karos led a wonderful Men’s Retreat for us in 2009, “Man of the House”, and is returning again by popular demand! Paul is an Orthodox Christian husband and father of three children residing with his family in the Minneapolis area.

Art of Niko Chocheli On Display at Antiochian Village

Niko Chocheli, a native of the Republic of Georgia, is so highly regarded as an artist that, in 1997, he was granted permanent resident status by the U.S. government because of his "extraordinary ability in the arts." It's a recognition shared by the likes of cellist Yo-Yo Ma.

The exhibition "Spirit and Whimsy," at the Antiochian Heritage Museum, Ligonier, focuses on his illustrations for children's books. The 75 paintings exhibited were selected from those made for seven books and are being shown together for the first time.

Read more from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

For more information on the exhibit, please contact Antiochian Village.

Visit Niko Chocheli's web site to learn about the artist and see more of his work.

Register for Antiochian Village Summer Camp 2010

Give your child a memorable experience this summer at Antiochian Village Camp under the leadership of our Head Counselors - Chris Shadid and Johanna Said! Register your children for camp for the summer of 2010 and let them build life-long friendships that are rooted in the Orthodox Faith and Jesus Christ. The summer of 2010 promises to be an unforgettable one at the Antiochian Village.

For more information on camping opportunities across the Archdiocese, visit the Department of Camping.

Antiochian Village Seeking a Camp Program Director

Antiochian Village is seeking a full time Camp Program Director, who will report to the Village Director. He or she will be responsible for a year round program which includes the development and oversight of the summer camp program staff (i.e. morning program, evening program, arts and crafts, etc).

The essential Duties and Responsibilities include the following (in no particular order) listed below. Other duties may be assigned as well:

o Planning, execution and development of VillEdge Adventures (Road Trip and Extreme VillEdge) and Sacred Arts (Iconography and Byzantine Chanting) programs.

o Training, mentoring and supervision of summer program staff

o Database entry, basic bookkeeping, general correspondence

o Facilitate program registration

o Development and Marketing of new Village-sponsored programs: Specialized Family Camps (Daddy/Daughter, Single Parent, Home School Families, etc.), Adventure Weekends (Whitewater rafting, caving, backpacking, skiing), Youth Leadership Retreats, Altar Boy Retreat, etc.

o Customized programs for Parishes, Youth Groups, Clergy Brotherhoods, Seminarians, etc.

o Marketing of the Antiochian Village Camp for rental to youth groups, sports groups and family programs.

o Forming alliances with school districts and youth programs for grant-funded Adventure programs and Environmental Education.

o Marketing and programming of Challenge Course

o Attending regional and/or national conferences (2-3 times/year)

o Promotional visitations to parishes (4-10 times/year)

For more information, or to send a résumé, please contact:

V. Rev. Anthony G. Yazge 

Antiochian Village Camp

201 St. Ignatius Trail

Bolivar, PA 15923

franthony@antiochianvillage.org

Beginning Byzantine Chant Workshop Hosted by Antiochian Village

"Have you ever met a stichera you didn’t like?" reads the brochure. "Do you know your eison from your apichema?" In conjunction with the St. Romanos Chanting Course, Antiochian Village is sponsoring a beginner's chant class from April 21-24. Taught by noted liturgical expert V. Fr. David Barr, Pastor of St. Elias Antiochian Church in Austin, Texas, the class promises to give new learners a foundation that will enable them to chant hymns in tones by the second day of the course. No prior knowledge of chant or of reading a musical score is required since the course emphasizes singing from text. Registration begins on Wednesday afternoon and classes wrap up by midday Saturday. Click here for registration information.

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Publishes Iconography Article with Mother Alexandra

The icon illustrates an ancient understanding of Jesus' resurrection as the gift he offers to all humanity on a renewed Earth. While all Orthodox churches are filled with icons, the Resurrection icon in the camp chapel at Antiochian Village retreat and conference center is one of the largest in Pennsylvania and possibly the United States.

"An icon is theology in color," said Mother Alexandra, founder of the Convent of St. Thekla, which also is on the grounds of Antiochian Village in Bolivar, Westmoreland County. The center, which also houses a museum and bookstore, is a ministry of the Antiochian Orthodox Church.

On Pascha Sunday the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette published Orthodox Icons Are Seen As "Theology in Color", with extensive comments from Antiochian monastic Mother Alexandra. Click here to enjoy the article in full.

Antiochian Village Hosts Homeschoolers and Antiochian Women

The past several weekends, Antiochian Village has been a beehive of activity. From March 11-14, over 160 participants from several states traveled to the Village for the Homeschooling Conference. Attendees enjoyed workshops, crafts and creative activities for the kids, corporate worship, and visits by His Grace Bishop Thomas with both the youth and adults. Thanks to the hard work of the Teen SOYO Chapters of St. Mary Orthodox Church in Johnstown, PA, and St. Michael Orthodox Church in Greensburg, PA, children attending the conference participated in a lively carnival complete with activities such as a hula hoop contest, a butterfly hunt, and most memorable of all, visits with "The Bible Guy." 

The following weekend, March 19-21, four Christian groups used the conference center; one of these groups was the Antiochian Women of the East, who came for their annual Lenten retreat and Spring delegates meeting.

An Unusual Visitor to Antiochian Village

On March 3, 2010, an unexpected and out of the ordinary visitor arrived at the edge of the Antiochian Village property. A small black bear was sighted in a tree. A Game Comissioner was called in. He sedated the bear and gave it a mask to protect its eyes and mouth while being moved.

The Game Comissioner confirmed that this is out of the ordinary. After examination, it is clear that this young bear is ill and thin. He came out of hibernation early, and finding no food, he tried to locate some in the neighbor's garbage.

The Game Commission assured Mother Alexandra that sleeping beauty will be medicated, fed, and released somewhere good for bears.

Antiochian Heritage Museum Opens "Spirit and Whimsy" Chocheli Exhibit

On March 15, the Antiochian Heritage Museum at Antiochian Village is opening a one-of-a-kind exhibit featuring the art of Niko Chocheli. "Spirit and Whimsy" marks the first time that a comprehensive exhibit of Chocheli's work, with examples from each of the books that he has illustrated, has ever been presented.

Niko Chocheli is one of the foremost artists to emerge from the Republic of Georgia, a nation rich in early Christian history. An acclaimed iconographer, illustrator, and award-winning artist, Chocheli draws upon the artistic traditions of both East and West, as well as his Orthodox Christian heritage, creating colorful and expressive paintings which have been shown throughout the world and which are held in many prestigious collections.

Saint Emmelia Orthodox Homeschooling Conference at Antiochian Village

Saint Emmelia Orthodox Homeschooling Conference

March 11-14, 2010

Make plans now to bring your family and join us for 3 days and nights of:

  • Inspiring Speakers
  • Enlightening Workshops
  • Lenten Liturgical Services
  • Curriculum Vendors
  • Comfortable Lodging
  • Delicious Lenten Meals
  • Family Fun and Fellowship

with other Orthodox Homeschoolers.

Check our website www.antiochianvillage.org for the conference schedule and registration information available 1/11/10.

Download PDF flyer

Marriage Enrichment Weekend at Antiochian Village

February 12-14, 2010

Sacred Image, Sacred Marriage

The guest speaker will be Presvytera Kerry Pappas, MA , MA, LMFT, a licensed marriage and family therapist who works primarily with Orthodox couples. She and her husband, Fr. Harry Pappas have been married for 28 years and have three grown children. Presvytera Kerry will be speaking on the topic of incarnating the images of marriage that are given to us in the church.

Weekend Package is $274/couple if postmarked by 2/1/10, $299 per couple after 2/1/10

*additional Sunday night lodging available*

For more information or to register, please visit www.antiochianvillage.org.

Download PDF flyer

Clergy Wives Weekend a Success!

Beautiful fall weather greeted approximately 70 wives of clergy from many jurisdictions on the weekend of November 5-7 at Antiochian Village in Ligonier, Pennsylvania for what was hopefully the 1st Annual Clergy Wives Weekend. Wives of priests, deacons and seminarians from 17 states and one Canadian province gathered to hear speakers and to share prayer and fellowship at a weekend event arranged in memory of Kh. Joanne Abdalah, who during her lifetime was an inspirational counselor and friend to many clergy, clergy wives, and countless other people.  The idea for the Weekend grew from the desire of Kh. Joanne’s son Joe wanting to find a way to honor his mother’s memory, and a similar idea from clergy wives who knew and loved her, too. It proved a most fitting and successful tribute!

Friday night was a relaxed time to be together in the Lodge building at the Village camp, with dinner, snacks, and a log fire. On Saturday morning everyone gathered in the camp church for a Divine Liturgy on the feast of St. Raphael of Brooklyn, whose shrine could be seen out the church window.

Register for Winter Camp at Antiochian Village

The days are becoming chilly at the Village and the nights are downright cold.  That can only mean one thing - Winter Camp must be around the corner.  We have two sessions of Winter Camp planned for young people in grades 7 through 12 on the observances of Martin Luther King Jr. weekend (Jan. 15-18) and Presidents weekend (Feb. 12-15).  There are two ways to register: online or mail-in paper forms.  If you register online, you will need to download and mail the Medical and Snow-tubing forms.    We are also accepting Winter Camp Staff applications.  Our tentative theme for both sessions of Winter Camp is "The 6 Most Important Decisions You'll Ever Make."  Don't wait another day, register today!  Check back soon for more details and visit our Winter Camp page for additional information.

A First: The Convent of Saint Thekla Celebrates the Feast of Saint Thekla

After Sunday Liturgy, His Grace Bishop JOSEPH with Father Anthony Yazge, Mother Alexandra, Mother Miriamne and Father George AlbertsAfter Sunday Liturgy, His Grace Bishop JOSEPH with Father Anthony Yazge, Mother Alexandra, Mother Miriamne and Father George AlbertsOn September 24, 2009, His Grace Bishop THOMAS, led the Convent and many clergy, present at the Village for a clergy retreat, in celebration of Festal Vespers the evening prior, and Orthos and Divine Liturgy on the Feast at the Saint Peter and Paul Chapel.  His Grace was also able to be with us for the beginning of Pilgrimage.  We thank him for presiding at the Liturgy and for being with us.  Many years, Master!

During the September 25-27 weekend, the Convent celebrated the Saint Thekla Pilgrimage.  His Grace, Bishop JOSEPH, arrived on Friday for the Pilgrimage celebration which included daily Vespers, Orthros, and Divine Liturgy.  We thank all of the clergy and chanters who served.  After the Liturgy on Saturday morning, all processed to the Shrine of Saint Thekla where His Grace led us in a Supplication Service to Saint Thekla.  Later in the day, His Grace presided at an Unction Service.  Over the course of the Pilgrimage, His Grace presented three spiritually uplifting homilies on our theme, “As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord” and led an “Ask Sayedna” panel.

Orthodox Christian Laity Annual Meeting at Antiochian Village

Listen to an interview with OCL director George Matsoukas on Ancient Faith Radio.

Amidst an unprecedented focus of attention and activity on Orthodox Unity, Orthodox Christian Laity invites all Orthodox and interested observers to attend its 22nd Annual conference to be held at the Antiochian Village in Ligonier, Pennsylvania, October 29-31, 2009.

“At no time in recent history has there been such attention focused on the quest for Orthodox unity both in America and world-wide,” declared Peter Petkas, OCL president.

“These developments provide OCL, a long-time advocate of Orthodox unity, and all concerned Orthodox with a historical opportunity to help chart the way toward this vital goal. Our annual meeting is a timely vehicle for both dialogue and action leading to Orthodox unity.”

Petkas explained that the program includes seven panels comprised of devout and informed Orthodox who will discuss a range of topics connected to the realization of Orthodox unity in America. He said these discussions will include (a) the process for achieving Orthodox unity in North America and other non-traditional Orthodox areas that was adopted at the recent Pan-Orthodox meeting held in Chambesy, Switzerland and (b) the impact that the exclusion of representation by the Church in North America in that meeting, and in future pre-conciliar meetings, will have on the relevance of those decisions to the Orthodox faithful in North America. His Beatitude Metropolitan Jonah, newly installed primate of the Orthodox Church in America, will deliver the keynote address. His Eminence Archbishop Nathaniel and His Grace Bishop Thomas will also participate in the meeting.

Registration Begins for OCF College Conference 2009 on September 20th

Fishers, IN – September 16, 2009

Registration for 2009 College Conference opens Sunday, September 20th and runs through December 1st. “Building Community” (II Corinthians 13:14) is the chosen theme for this year’s conference. Identical conferences will run simultaneously from December 27-31 in two locations: the Antiochian Village in Bolivar, Pennsylvania and the Diakonia Center in Salem, South Carolina. 

OCF is honored this year to announce that His Beatitude Metropolitan Jonah will be the keynote speaker at the Antiochian Village. Additionally, The Very Reverend Father Jon Braun will be delivering the keynote addresses at the Diakonia Center.

Registration is $325 for students and $375 for alumni. Included in the registration fee are transformative keynote addresses and inspiring workshops, social events, a dinner/dance, memories and friendships that will last a lifetime as well as lodging and meals.  

Space is limited so register early. Some scholarships are available.  Please visit www.ocf.net or call 1-800-919-1623 for more information. 

For additional information contact:

Kelli Phillips

Program Director,
Orthodox Christian Fellowship
kelli@ocf.net
www.ocf.net

Audio Available of Antiochian Village's Presentation at Archdiocese Convention

Click here to listen to the presentation from Antiochian Village Director Mr. Paul Finley and Chair Mr. Robert Laham at the general assembly of the 2009 Archdiocese Convention.

More audio from the 2009 Convention is available from Ancient Faith Radio.

Record Number of Children Attend Camp at Antiochian Village

His Grace Bishop THOMAS passes on the following message:

Beloved of the Diocese of Charleston, Oakland, and the Mid-Atlantic:
May God bless you always.
This summer a record number of our children are spending time at the Antiochian Village Camp.  I've been blessed to share some of this time with them at the Camp.  I encourage you to go on the Camp website to view what has been happening this summer of 2009.  In order to see the photos, go to the Camp website and see the Summer Memories section.
Thank you.
Yours in Christ,
+Bp. THOMAS

Clergy Wives Weekend 2009: Antiochian Village, Nov. 8-9

Antiochian Village Announces a pan-Orthodox gathering of spiritual refreshment and fellowship in memory of Kh. Joanne Abdalah.

Kh. Joanne Abdalah served as an inspiration in her life as the wife of a priest and as a counselor to many. She understood the joys and trials of this life, and the need for finding strength in Christ and each other. She believed that every clergy wife needs to discover and develop her own Christian vocation.

In her memory, clergy wives of the Antiochian Archdiocese and greater Pittsburgh area Orthodox churches are planning the inaugural pan-Orthodox Clergy Wives Weekend at the Antiochian Village the weekend of November 7-8, 2009. Mother Christophora of Holy Transfiguration Monastery (Ellwood City) and Matushka Juliana Schmemann will be the speakers, addressing the theme: “How to Be a Clergy Wife and Still Go to Heaven.” The schedule will reflect Joanne’s holy and holistic approach to life – we need to pray; we need to play. We need to enjoy the fellowship for this short time without parish responsibilities, family responsibilities or other cares of this world.

His Eminence Metropolitan PHILIP Announces the Establishment of the Convent of St. Thekla at Antiochian Village

It is with great joy that His Eminence Metropolitan PHILIP announces the establishment of the Convent of St. Thekla at the Antiochian Village.  The Acting Superior of the convent will be Mother Alexandra (Magan), and we welcome her with joy to the Antiochian Archdiocese of North America.

Mother Alexandra will take up residency at the Antiochian Village during the first week of July, and will live in temporary housing until such time as the residence building is constructed on the proposed site for the convent, which is on the main property at the Antiochian Village. This will allow her to experience a good part of the camping season, and to interact with our children.

She also has plans to attend the Archdiocese Convention in late July, and to have a presence at the St. Thekla Pilgrimage which will be held at the Antiochian Village in September.

There will soon be a website established for the convent, where all important news and information will be posted.

Click here to read a brief biography of Mother Alexandra.

Pan-Orthodox Men's Retreat at Antiochian Village

Orthodox Men's Retreat
Friday June 26-Sunday June 28, 2009
Antiochian Village


All men, single, married, and of all ages are welcome to join us for this Pan-Orthodox Men's Retreat weekend led by Paul Karos and hosted by Antiochian Village. Group discount available for groups of 10 or more. Bring your parish men’s group!


Registration forms available at www.antiochianvillage.org
Questions? Call 724.238.3677 ext. 425 or send an e-mail to barli@antiochianvillage.org