Archive for April, 2013

Behold, the Bridegroom

Behold, the Bridegroom cometh at midnight, and blessed is the servant whom he shall find awake. But he whom he shall find neglectful is verily unworthy. Behold, therefore, my soul, beware, lest thou fallest into deep slumber, and the door of the kingdom be closed against thee, and thou be delivered to death. But be thou wakeful, crying Holy! Holy! Holy! art Thou, O God. . . .

Holy Wednesday

I behold Thy bridal chamber richly adorned, O my Saviour; but I have no wedding garment to worthily enter. Make radiant the garment of my soul, O Giver of Light, and save me. . . .

Come, ye believers, let us work diligently for the Master; for he distributes wealth unto his servants. Let each of us according to our ability, increase the gifts of grace twofold. (Tuesday) . . .

Rich men have turned poor and gone hungry; but they that seek the Lord shall not be deprived of any good things (Psalms 33 from Septuagint)

(from the Bridegroom Matins & the Pre-Sanctified Liturgies of Holy Monday, Tuesday, & Wednesday)

Let the brother in humble circumstances glory in his high position; and let the rich man glory in his humiliation, because like flowering grass he will pass away. (James 1:9-10)

O Bridegroom, brilliant in Thy beauty above all mankind, who didst call us to the spiritual banquet of Thy chamber, cast away from me the likeness of the rags of iniquity, by participation in Thy Passion and adorn me with the robe of Thy beauty, and distinguish me as a brilliant guest in Thy kingdom, for Thou only art compassionate. (Tuesday Matins, from the Aposticha)

From the Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese website:

 Begin Holy Week with a holy act

Also see, Passion Week: An Explanation (note the Bridegroom Orthros Services Mon.-Wed.)

Eleanor clearing the hurdles of life …


… but she needed help to get to the finish line, to become a teacher.

The Orthodox Mission in Sierra Leone is providing a scholarship and an artificial leg so that she can attain her goal.

I’ll let Reverend Themi tell the story of her determination amidst the dangers of wartorn Sierre Leone: 

To access:

Waterloo Disabled Village


Waterloo Village Water Well

Waterloo Village Water Well

The Village is one of the projects of the Orthodox Mission in Sierra Leone, an Australian Orthodox Christian initiative  led Fr. Themi Adamopoulos, located near Freetown, the capital of this west African country. The effort will be sustained and thrive as Orthodox Christians  worldwide lend support. 

Orthodox Christian craft their ministries to persons with disabilities not according to a central model but according to the specific situation and the particularities of the culture.  Waterloo Disabled Village reflects this. 

The ministry involves housing, water, gardens, medical support, and education to the persons with disabilities and their families.

Access their website to learn more: Waterloo Disabled Village

Picture from Picasa Web Albums: Themi Adamopoulo photos



Bishop Basil blesses the Sheltering Tree

BuchananPkPurpleBeechThe Sheltering Tree I will be a home for ten persons with intellectual disabilities; each person will have their own apartment, and there will be a common area for community life. The process toward the completion of the home has been very involved; it is a work in process. But the Church in the person of His Grace Bishop Basil has blessed the home-to-be. We are a people of faith, seeing ahead to the day of fulfillment, to the completion of the Sheltering Tree I, the home, and also to a planned educational and vocational center, the ABLE Center. 

The ministry is located in the Omaha, Nebraska metropolitan area. 

Their website: 

The planned ABLE Center: 

Also: His Holiness Patriarch Kirill consecrates the house for disabled children at the Ascension Monastery in Bancheny, Ukraine (Pictures) 

Beauty is in the Eye of the Beholder, by Sophia Sharos

Given at the 2012 St. John Chrysostom Oratorical Festival, and discovered in For the Life of the World The monthly newsletter of Saints Constantine and Helen Greek Orthodox Church Volume IV, Issue 6 June, 2012, Page 8 

Beauty is in the Eye of the Beholder
Everyone, no matter what
disability someone has is
beautiful and unique in their
own way. The special needs
are seen in the eyes of God the
same way he sees people with
no disabilities. People with
disabilities can sometimes
have special inner gifts and
can be very talented in their
own way. In my opinion, special needs people have the
power to show us how precious life is.
People with disabilities
have the same rights and opportunities as people with no
disabilities. Every person is
equal in the eyes of God. It is
insulting when people have
stereotypic attitudes toward
special needs. God has a purpose and vision for all of his
children. Who are you to
judge what a person appearance looks like and how they
In our society today everyone needs to learn how to
have patience with the special
needs. They learn at a different pace than people with no
disabilities, but that should
not stop us from taking the
time out to help them. In this
day in age, the people with
disabilities are “labeled” as the
people who are stupid or cannot do anything for themselves. I think we can use the
disabled as a mirror for ourselves to be grateful for what
we have. They are wounded,
and we are wounded. They
have the advantage of having
their wounds clearly and unmistakably visible.
We can reflect upon and
cherish the disabled and those
with special needs. One thing
is certain; people should always have respect for people
with special needs. Ask yourself what if I was in their
shoes? They are more than
inconveniences to be tolerated
or nuisances to be unnoticed.
Rather, these are people, treasures really, with whom we
have a bond and, if we decide
on, an affectionate relationship.
Sophia Sharos


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