Events Are In Sequence - Please Scroll Down
Children Raise Money For The Coptic Orphans
During Lent, the Church School students filled canisters with the nickels, dimes, and quarters they earned for the Coptic Orphans. On May 4th, the Youth Organization will sponsor a bake sale and proceeds will also benefit the Coptic Orphans. This photograph will be sent with our check. Last year the check was for $300. We hope that our 2004 check will be double that amount!
On Saturday evening, several of our children received the sacrament of Holy Confession for the first time. Today following Liturgy and Holy Communion, they received certificates to commemorate the occasion.
Palm Sunday And Procession
Great lent officially ends on Lazarus Saturday. The Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom is celebrated to commemorate the raising of Lazarus. Notice that Fr. Andrew is wearing gold vestments. This change in color denotes the resurrectional nature of this service as a prelude to Holy Week. Because of it resurrectional character the hymn as many as have been baptized into Christ is sung. Historically this was a baptismal liturgy.
The hymn of Palm Sunday proclaims the children holding the emblems of victory singing, "Hosanna blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord." We experience Christ triumphal entrance into Jerusalem by processing around the church holding palm and pussy willow branches as symbols of Christ's ability to overcome death by raising Lazarus.
Pan Orthodox Young Adults Meet At St. Luke Parish.
Following Liturgy on Lazurus Saturday, Father Andrew spoke to a group from the Pan Orthodox Young Adults. The topic was Holy Week.
Lazurus Saturday Liturgy and Pysanky Egg Decorating Class.
This Saturday Liturgy was held for Lazurus Saturday. Above we can see an icon depicting the ressurection of Lazurus by Christ.
Following Liturgy, a Pysanky Egg Decoroating Class was held. Below we the see the technique of applying wax to the eggs being demonstrated
Deacon Danial was also on hand to teach the weaving of palms into crosses and other shapes.
Father Andrew Speaks At The First Church Of The Nazarene.
Father Andrew was invited to speak at the First Church Of The Nazarene in Lemont for their Good Friday Service. "Here we see Fr. Andrew pointing to the Cross, explaining the physical and spiritual structure. Father quoted from the book of Psalms many times to illustrate the "power" of the Cross, paying special attention to the "proper context" one must have when listening to the words of our Lord, especially Psalm 22 "Lord, Lord, why hast Thou forsaken me?" Ultimately the power of the Cross is Christ's victory over death by His Resurrection. This is our path to salvation."
Father Andrew poses for a photo with Pastor Kevin and his family. Pastor Kevin is rector of the First Church Of The Nazarene in Lemont. Approximately 40 faithful attended the Good Friday service for reflection and prayer. Pastor Kevin and Father Andrew are members of the Lemont Clergy Association.
Saints Constantine and Helen Parish Visits For Presanctified Liturgy.
As has become our custom in previous years, during lent St. Luke Parish and Saints Constantine and Helen Parish take turns hosting presantified Liturgy for both parishes. Two week previously St. Luke Parish visitied Saints Constantine and Helen Parish, this week it was St. Luke"s turn to host the service.
At the end of the Liturgy, Father Jonas of Saints Constantine and Helen spoke about the story of Lazurus and it affects our lives.
At the conclusion of the service, all were invited to share in a lenten supper and fellowship.
Above Father Andrew shares the head table with Father Jonas and Father Byron of Saints Constantine and Helen. Below we see pictures of the members of the two parishes breaking bread together and sharing in fellowship.
St. Luke Parish Hosts Mission Vespers
This Sunday evening, clergy and parishioners from the surrounding area came to St. Luke to celebrate mission vespers. Following the service and a short lesson on the Book of Proverbs and it's meaning for us, everyone was invited to enjoy a light snack in the new fellowship hall. See pictures below.
Memorial And Blessing Of Vestments
It is customary in the Orthodox Church to hold memorial services to pray for those who have departed this life. Here we see Father Andrew leading a memorial service for the departed of several of the families of the parish. This is often done on the anniversary of the departed's passing away. Another custom is to donate articles to the church in memory of those who departed. Below we see Father Andrew blessing a set of vestments that were donated by the famlies whose departed were remembered today.
Family Lenten Retreat
Following Liturgy, St. Luke parish held it's lenten family retreat. It began with a lenten meal.
During the meal, the tone for the retreat was set with various readings.
Next the children participated in the making of a banner which read "Yours Hands Have Made And Fashioned Me." The children used paint to leave their handprints on the banner. See above and below.
A class was held on how to prepare Prosphoro (Altar Bread). Father Andrew gave a brief talk to start things off.
Among other things, Father Andrew spoke about the molds using in making the designs on the top of the altar bread. Above and below we can see various molds that can be used.
Above the ingredients are mixed and below they are shaped. Finally the loaves of bread were baked.
Next everyone broke into various groups to learn about various topics related to the different Sundays of Lent. The children were broken up by age groups.
Father Andrew spoke to a group concerning the Liturgy of Preparation and the items which are in place on the Table of Oblation
One group of adults was taught by Father Sloan who spoke about St. John Climacus and the "Ladder of Divine Ascent."
Another group attended a talk by Deacon Andrew concerning St. Gregory.
When the classes were concluded, each group gave a presentation on what they learned. One group made icons and gave a presentation on the Sunday of Orthodoxy and the icons that they made.
Above and below we see pictures relating the story of Lazarus Saturday. Below we see Lazarus being raised from the dead after four days in the tomb.
The teen group gave a presentation on Saint Mary of Egypt.
Deacon Andrew and Father Sloan also gave presentations concenring St. John Climacus and St. Gregory. When the presentations were completed, everyone sang a hymn and Father Andrew dismissed everyone from the retreat.
With the coming of spring and in preparation for Pascha. St. Luke parishioners turned out this Saturday to give some loving care to the Lord's House. Dividing into teams, various projects were undertaken. Above two of our parishioners dismantle the old appliances in the old kitchen for disposal.
All the altar items and candlestands needed to be cleaned and polished.
The storage area in the old basement was cleaned and organized.
A team of ladies undertook the job of cleaning organizing the new kitchen.
The woodwork was waxed and windows were washed.
The grounds surrounding area was inspected and cleaned of debree
It is only right and proper that we take the time and effort to insure that the Lord's House in kept in a manner that honor's Him. Much is needed to be done behind the scenes to insure that everything is proper, when you show up for services. If you wish to help in any area or have special skills that can be used to improve our parish, please contact the property team.
Father Andrew Takes To The Radio Waves
Father Andrew was interviewed for National Public Radio (NPR) by Melissa Block about the World Trade Center Memorial and how it relates to the war in Irag. Father stated that the attack on the World Trade Center is to the War on Terrorism as Pearl Harbor was to World War Two. It follows then that having a piece of the World Trade Center as a memorial is like having a piece of the Arizona. The entire program can be heard on a program called "All Things Considered" on Friday at 4:00 P.M. on station WBEZ - 9.15.
Relatedly the World Trade Center Memorial was mentioned in a article in the L.A. Times. The following is the portion pertaining to St. Luke Parish
"In July, Father Andrew Harrison drove a rented Ford Windstar 1,600 miles, from Palos Hills, Ill., to New York City and back. His only cargo on the return trip was a 2-foot, 200-pound beam that he had carefully draped with an American flag.
That section of steel, now installed in the narthex of St. Luke Orthodox Church, sits in front of a copper icon of St. Nicholas (The New York church named after the saint was destroyed when the buildings fell). A rectangular box on top of the steel holds taper candles, always lighted in remembrance of those who died on 9/11."
The entire article called Soothing Suffering With Steel can be viewed by clicking here