Tag Archives: orthodox church

Blessed New Year! Synod of Bishops releases “An Encyclical of Hope”

2 Jan

The Holy Synod of Bishops of the Orthodox Church in America has just released a joint statement titled, We Rejoice Even in Tribulation: An Encyclical of Hope, as a fitting end to the year 2020 and as a promising beginning to the year 2021. The encyclical acknowledges the tribulations endured by the Church worldwide and people globally due to the devastating Corona Virus pandemic.

In the encyclical the bishops appropriately quote a passage from the Letter of St. Paul to the Romans:

“We also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation
produces perseverance; and perseverance, character;
and character, hope. Now hope does not disappoint,
because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts
by the Holy Spirit who was given to us” (Rom 5:3-5).

The bishops further encourage the faithful: “Let us not be downcast by our tribulations, but take courage and find in them our hope of the Resurrection.”

Other topics addressed by the hierarchs in the encyclical include: the temptation to fear; the unshakable nature of the Church; the acceptance of God’s Providence; and the ongoing journey of the faithful toward the Kingdom of God.

Read the entire encyclical here.

Pastor’s Corner January 2013

15 Jan

Fr. Steven Belonick copyDear Friends,

Are you seeking a church home? If so, we welcome you to Holy Ghost parish.

We have a long history here in Bridgeport, Connecticut (founded in 1894) and an even longer history as part of the ancient Christian faith. As Orthodox Christians we have been handed down the faith presented by Jesus Christ to His apostles and successively passed on to generations for more than 2,000 years. We are keeping and living that same faith today!

The word “Orthodox” means “right teaching” and “right praise” and you will find both in our community. As far as “right teaching,” we follow the inspired Holy Scriptures, the writings of the holy saints who have witnessed to our Lord, and the decisions of the councils of the ancient Church, whose participants untangled points of dispute among Christians and defined the proper teachings about God the Father, and His Son and Holy Spirit. As far as “right praise,” we are nourished by the services of the Church, which are replete with biblical references and ancient hymns passed down from early Christians. And, every week, we gather on Sunday to receive our Lord’s Body and Blood  in Holy Communion.

Although immigrants from Russia and Slavic countries originally founded our parish, bringing with them their Orthodox Christian faith, nowadays times, places, and faces have changed! Our congregation is multi-national and multi-generational. We find ourselves now situated in an inner city that needs the grace of God, and our members have developed a special ministry to the poor and needy in response.IMG_5223_2 copy 2

In short, we are Christians trying to live as Jesus taught. We are striving to live the faith He handed down to His Apostles.

It would be impossible for me to express in a short space the long history of the Orthodox Church or the richness of its teaching and the depth and beauty of its services. I can only invite you, as the Apostle Philip said to his friend Nathaniel: “Come and see!” (John 1:43-46). You are always welcome to our parish, God’s house.

Sincerely, with love in our Lord, Father Steven J. Belonick

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