The Mission Statement of the Antiochian Village states: “The mission of the Antiochian Village is to present to young people a living experience of the Holy Orthodox Faith, in their relationship with God and other campers in an uncluttered, natural environment.”
For those of you who were blessed to have known Fr. John Namie, of blessed memory, you can’t help but remember him as that “living experience.” If you didn’t know Fr. John personally, but you are a “Villager” undoubtedly your Village experience was rooted in the lessons of love of God & each other that Fr. John’s leadership taught and exemplified.
At its inception, His Eminence, Metropolitan Philip saw the Village as “a new spiritual dimension to our lives.” Certainly this is true! From our time together at the Village, we have been blessed with a more personal experience of God’s love through unforgettable memories & lifelong friendships and also with indelible life lessons.
Fr. John imparted to us all, through his own actions, valuable tools to aid us in our quest to live the Christian life. We learned about unconditional love, sense of community and how our actions impact others. We learned the value of humility and to be well aware of the dangers of vain glory.
The legacy of the Village, and by extension Fr. John, is the tangible impact on our lives. Consider the scores of friendships that have joined families together through marriages and the choice of Godparents for your children. Throughout our parishes and our organizations, how many who are actively involved and serving in roles of leadership are those whose lives were impacted at the Antiochian Village? Many of our parishes now host “Village at Home” events as a way to carry that “Village feeling” with them throughout the year.
What better way to again recapture the Village experience you hold so dear than to plan to attend the Alumni/Memorial Weekend November 4-6, 2011. We will return home to our mountain and together we will pray for Fr. John on the 10th anniversary of his passing into eternal life. We will chant, as he taught us, and for many of us, we will hear not only his voice in our memories but his hand counting out the rhythm on the chanters stand!
Mark your calendars and start making your travel plans! Watch for more information as it becomes available on the Antiochian Village website , the AV Facebook page , and through information sent to your local parish. See you on the mountain!