Tuesday, March 17, 2020

UPDATES: Statement from Holy Synod, Schedule Changes, more

Dear Parish Faithful,

Christ is in our midst!
He is and ever shall be!

Here is the latest statement from the Holy Synod of Bishops. To be brief for the moment, here is what I have decided for upcoming liturgical services, based on what is presented here:

  • The Liturgy of the Presanctified Gifts for tomorrow evening will be cancelled.
  • Our next service will the Divine Liturgy on Sunday morning, March 22, the Third Sunday of Great Lent and also the Sunday of the Cross. 
  • We will serve the Vesperal Liturgy for the Feast of the Annunciation on Wednesday evening, March 25.

I will write in further detail tomorrow. My main concern is working out a system that will limit our liturgical gatherings to ten faithful parishioners in response to the CDC's directive to do so. That, in itself, is complicated. His Grace Bishop Paul is following that directive and will do so until further changes, if any, are recommended. If conditions continue to worsen, and a new directive from the CDC is issued, than I will make a further reassessment based on that directive.

Again, we are facing unprecedented conditions with the outbreak of the coronavirus; and I am trying to act as responsibly as possible bearing the moral responsibility that I carry for each and every member of our community's well-being - both spiritual and physical.

As I wrote the other day, continue observing Great Lent among your families. The crucified Lord of Glory is with us all "unto the end of the age." (Matt. 28:20)

In Christ,
Fr. Steven


From: "Archdeacon Joseph Matusiak"
To: "steven k"
Sent: Tuesday, March 17, 2020 3:09:39 PM
Subject: Holy Synod Statement on COVID-19 & Archpastoral Letter of His Beatitude

Reverend Fathers,

On Monday, March 16, 2020, His Beatitude Metropolitan Tikhon convened a special meeting of the Holy Synod. Following a day of meetings with health-care experts, Metropolitan Tikhon led the Holy Synod in a discussion on the effects of the spreading outbreak on the parishes, clergy, and faithful of the Orthodox Church in America.

Following that meeting His Beatitude Metropolitan Tikhon and the members of the Holy Synod of Bishops of the Orthodox Church in America have today issued a further statement on the Coronavirus outbreak which can be read here.

At the same time, His Beatitude Metropolitan Tikhon has issued an Archpastoral Letter to the clergy, monastics and faithful of the Orthodox Church in America which can be read here.

Please be sure to check our resource page on the Coronavirus outbreak. We are updating it regularly.

Archdeacon Joseph