Articles on Orthodox Christian Charity
This verse has been chosen as the theme for the 2009 Convention hosted July 19 to 26, 2009, in Palm Desert, CA, by St. Michael Church of Van Nuys:
"Be mindful, O Lord, of those who bear fruit and do good works in thy Holy Churches, and who remember the poor." + The Anaphoras of Sts. Basil the Great and John Chrysostom
In support of this theme, International Orthodox Christian Charities (IOCC) will be exhibiting at the Convention, with multiple special presentations planned.
Also present will be FOCUS North America. Working primarily in the areas of Food, Occupation, Clothing, Understanding and Shelter, FOCUS North America (the Fellowship of Orthodox Christians United to Serve) exists to share the love of Christ with our neighbors who are hungry, thirsty, naked, sick, strangers and in prison here in North America (Matt. 25:34-6). FOCUS North America is a domestic social action agency of the Orthodox Church "warmly endorsed" by the hierarchs of SCOBA. It was formed to serve the poor and needy on behalf of the Church in North America, to support existing Orthodox ministries doing so effectively, and to help welcoming parishes initiate new social action ministries in their own communities.
Here at www.Antiochian.org, we will be bringing together notable news about charitable work done across our Archdiocese and the ministries like IOCC which we help support. Visit our collection of articles on charitable work here.
The theme of the upcoming 2009 Archdiocese Convention is charity: "Be mindful, O Lord, of those who bear fruit and do good works in thy holy Churches, and who remember the poor." In that spirit, Antiochian.org will begin publishing additional content on the charitable work being done across the Antiochian Archdiocese and the ministries we support, including those of SCOBA (Standing Conference of Canonical Orthodox Bishops in the Americas), like OCN.
The Orthodox Christian Network is excited to announce another addition to its already dynamic and ever evolving list of Radio on Demand Programming (Podcast), The FOCUS North America Podcast.
The Focus North America Podcast will feature engaging commentary and timely updates on Orthodox Christian social action volunteers, agencies and ministries of the Orthodox Church reaching out to the poor and needy here at home.
Rev. Dr. Christopher Metropulos, the Executive Director of the OCN, an agency of SCOBA, said, “Serving the poor and needy in North America should be a priority for every Orthodox Christian. We are proud to partner with FOCUS North America and to support their dynamic and growing ministry on behalf of the whole Church.”
Aleppo, Syria - On a rainy evening in this ancient city famed for its pistachios and historic mosques and churches, 120 Iraqi refugees gather in a church’s basement to learn about the “silent killers” of their community – diabetes and high blood pressure. The prevalence of both diseases is rising among the estimated one million Iraqis who have fled to Syria from Iraq since 2003.
Dr. Rana, an Iraqi refugee who came to Syria in 2008 after completing her medical degree at Baghdad University, has organized the gathering. She pulls out test kits and begins to teach each patient how to measure their blood pressure and their glucose level. Dr. Rana explains that diabetes and high blood pressure are prevalent in refugee communities where unemployment is high and people lack access to regular health care. “Many Iraqis do not go to the doctor because they spend time worrying about their families and so do not have the very important regular tests for these illnesses,” she says.
International Orthodox Christian Charities’ (IOCC) Jerusalem/West Bank Representative Dirk Lackovic-van Gorp travels to Gaza regularly overseeing IOCC’s distributions of food, blankets and hygiene supplies to 6,000 vulnerable families throughout Gaza. Here is a portion of his field diary. For Dirk‘s complete Gaza diary go to http://ioccingaza.blogspot.com
As we approach the Erez crossing on the Israeli side of the border with the Palestinian territory of Gaza, it suddenly occurs to me that I have already grown familiar with the routine. I need to pause and remind myself of the daily reality for the 1.5 million Palestinians on the other side of this crossing – that they are effectively prisoners in a small strip of land along the scenic Mediterranean coast.
St. Augustine, FL – Several hundred Orthodox Christian faithful from throughout the country and as far away as Albania and Romania will be in St. Augustine this week for the dedication of the new Archbishop Anastasios and Archbishop Demetrios Missionary Training and Administrative Building of the Orthodox Christian Mission Center (OCMC). This new facility will serve as the international missions headquarters for North America’s estimated 1.5 million Orthodox Christians. Events begin with an evening banquet Wednesday, May 20, and continue on Thursday with a Divine Liturgy service at 7:30 a.m. The actual Dedication ceremony will take place at 10 a.m. Thursday, May 21, to be followed by a luncheon.