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A Sisterhood Serving Christ

By Kh. Dannie Moore, Humanitarian Coordinator

Serving with the Antiochian Women of the Archdiocese for many years, I have witnessed many acts of charity done in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. We are "a sisterhood serving Christ through serving others." As Antiochian Women, we are called to many acts of mercy in our homes, in our parishes, in our dioceses, and together in our Archdiocese. So much is required: money and time and, from the Prophet Micah, "to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God" (Micah 6:8).

Sometimes, we may wonder if we are affecting the lives of those we so desire to help. Having six beautiful children to take care of, from birth to college age, made our home life very interesting. After our fifth child was born, my mother came to stay with us for a couple of weeks, as she did after the birth of each one of our babies. We moved through the day meeting the needs of those in our care. One day, she gently said, "A mother is a loaf of bread, and each child wants the whole loaf and can only have a slice." Through the years, that observation has been a reminder of how to serve others.

As we recall in the account of the feeding of the five thousand in Scripture, it was late in the day and Jesus had been teaching the people and healing the sick. The Twelve wanted to send them away to get something to eat. Jesus said, "You give them something to eat" (Mark 6: 37). A little boy offered Jesus five loaves and two fish. Jesus took them in His hands and "looking up to heaven, He blessed and broke them and gave them to His disciples and the disciples gave to the multitudes. So they all ate and were filled" (Matthew 14:19, 20). Each person did not receive a whole loaf of bread, but only a portion (or slice). Because Christ had blessed it, the same nourishment (power) was in the portion as in the whole loaf.

We can think of the Antiochian Women being like that loaf of bread. Or we can see the act of mercy we do together as the loaf of bread. Whichever we choose, we can be confident that if we offer our bread to Christ our God, He will bless it, break it, and give it back to us to give to others. And the same power is in each piece as in the whole loaf. We can trust that God "is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all we ask or think, according to the power that works in us" (Ephesians 3:20).

At this time, we are called together to help the suffering people of Syria. Our humanitarian act of mercy is to send Baby Kits and School Kits for the children and Health Kits for the children and adults in this beloved country, trapped in this conflict they have not chosen. This act of mercy is being coordinated with the International Orthodox Christian Charities (IOCC). Let us remember them each day and do what we can for those for whom the hour is already late. Together we can help provide the basic necessities of life.

Glory to God for the Antiochian Women!