Rectors Annual Report January 2012
By Father Andrew Harrison
OTHER ACTIVITIESOrthodox Christian Clergy Association
Sanctity of Life Service Committee
Lemont Clergy Association Visits to the Lemont senior care facility
Civil Air Patrol Chaplain Monthly moral leadership classes
Garden Center Monthly ministry to the mentally challenged
Alcoholics Anonymous meeting Liaison
PADS Responsible for record boxes and laundry
YOCAMA Mission Team spiritual Leader
St. Herman’s Seminary Alaska lecturer on Alcoholism and the Family
Israel, Jordan and Egypt Pilgrimage leader
2012 begins my 16th year as rector of St. Luke. This is the longest pastorate in my life as a priest. I can truly say it has been the most spiritually inspiring. Although adult membership grew slightly to 117, the growth in the number of youth has been phenomenal, now at 87. On the Sunday before Christmas we had a total attendance at the Divine Liturgy of 169. On normal Sundays we have an attendance of 120s. We still have not resolved our worship space problems. Our short term strategic plan was to increase in the number of seats. This has not been accomplished. The mid and long term plan was the expansion of our present facility and the establishment of an annex or second parish. This also has not been accomplished. There is a plan which has been discussed to increase the space, but it will require a zoning change and major foundation revisions. This will be an expensive project but feasible according to the architects who made the inspection. Hopefully 2012 will be the year we begin one or all of these expansion projects.
We are averaging about the same attendance for Vespers, Matins and weekday services. There will be a change in our Matins schedule to facilitate our readers to practice chanting the third hour before Liturgy. Weekday liturgies will begin at 9 AM instead of 7:30 AM. We will still do some evening Vesperal Liturgies. Morning prayers continue on Tuesday and Thursday at 6:30 AM. We are looking for early birds to come out and pray for the sick, suffering and homeless. Morning Prayer also includes Bible study. We are now in the middle of our fifth year as a PADS homeless shelter. Again I commend Tom Kozbiel for his devotion to the homeless. Without his commitment the program would not have continued. The numbers of homeless have decreased. Questions have been raised about continuing to sponsor PADS. In order to continue, we will need a new site manager if Tom retires.
Your stewardship helped fund two mission teams, one to the Navaho Reservation and the other to the Blackfeet Reservation through the YOCAMA program Young Orthodox Christian American Missions Adventures. Plans are being made for an Alaska mission team next summer through OCMC and teams again for YOCAMA and project Mexico. We now have two Alcoholics Anonymous meetings and a Codependents Anonymous meeting on Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday at St. Luke. We have forty-three active ministries. We added three new ministries this year: Men’s Morning Prayer, Missions, and Fitness ministry. If interested in creating a ministry or taking one on, see a team leader or me. The bulletin board ministry needs a new leader. We had our tenth year 9/11 memorial program. After ten years we are considering modifying the program. We had very good community response and comments that we should continue it. Our close relationship with SS. Constantine & Helen Greek Orthodox Church continues with joint services and participation in the Archdiocese Junior Olympics. This year we exceeded last year’s record participation. The church school program is revising its teaching methods. We will be moving, if feasible, to internet and electronic teaching using power point and video screens in each class room. I can’t say too much about the dedication of our teaching staff.
Parking lot lights, new cabinets in the conference room and fellowship hall and the prayer shrine were completed this year. We were able to use the shrine for the blessing of the well. The first step toward finishing the iconography of the sanctuary began with the cloth painting along the walls. This symbolized Christ’s Mystical banquet table and being within the Holy of Holies.
Much of this report has been the work of you, our members. Please read the reports for more details. I pray for and commend our Parish Council and those who are doing ministry especially Steven Hansen, Mark Bach, Diane Wilczak and John Limberopoulos who are leaving the council and to Anthea Huisman, Tammy Tsiones who are changing ministries. We wish them Many Years! As Christ said, ?The fields are ready for harvest but the laborers are few.? Please read the reports!