Pastoral Letter from Bishop Thomas Lists Educational Resources


June 26, 2013

Beloved in Christ,

May God grant you many years!

I wanted to remind you about some excellent Orthodox educational opportunities that are presently available to you and the beloved of your dioceses. Next week there will be a Parish Life Conference in Eastern Pennsylvania. I strongly recommend that you pass this on to the faithful. If they have the opportunity to participate, they will never regret it.

Information about the conference
Information about the speakers 

Secondly, there are a number of Orthodox parochial schools and camping programs that are available to your young people in the United States. The number is surprising. If you're interested in looking into this in the future, a list can be secured from Fr. Joseph Purpura (frjoseph@orthodoxyouth.com) or through the Department of Camping.

Many people have an interest in studying Orthodox theology but are not able to go to seminary. An opportunity exists to continue your
theological education, and, for qualified candidates, secure a Master's degree and possibly even a Doctoral degree with a small time
spent in residency. This is perfect for full-time clergy and people who cannot leave their homes for an extended period of time. I am
speaking, of course, about the St. Stephen's Program which does work in partnership with the St. John of Damascus School of Theology at the
Balamand Seminary and also Pittsburgh Theological Seminary. There are also educational tracks in youth ministry, musicology and iconography. If interested, please email theoedu1@aol.com or call 201-569-0095.

Next, I would like to remind you that there will be the St. Thekla & St. Raphael Pilgrimage Sept. 20-22, 2013. For information on that,
you may contact the Antiochian Village at 724-238-3677.

We will also be having at the Antiochian Village a clergy retreat that you are welcome to participate in on Oct. 1-4, 2013. Bishop Anthony
(Michaels) of the Diocese of Toledo will be the keynote speaker. Once again, you can contact the Antiochian Village about this.

We are also having a deacons retreat the weekend of Sept. 13-15 with Prof. Christopher Veniamin of St. Tikhon's Seminary as our keynote
speaker. For information about this, please contact Fr. Anthony Roeber (agr2@psu.edu) or Dcn. Peter Maris (peter@pgmaris.com).

Thank you very much for giving us your attention, and please feel free to forward this to as many people as possible at your earliest
convenience. Have a blessed day!

Yours in Christ,

+Bp. Thomas