This post is the beginning of a series. I will frequently try to include a photograph with each installment in the series. I’m somewhat of a hack photographer and often a single photograph will correspond with what I’m writing (at least, in my head it seems to go along…) and so as far as is possible and makes sense I’ll include something. The added benefit is that if you, the reader, are anything like me, having some type of image to look at and associate with the text will hold your attention longer than simply reading my words. Children’s books that are well illustrated often hold my attention much more quickly than simple type, as I have a short attention span and consider myself a rather large child most of the time, and pictures just naturally draw me in.
This post can be considered the preface to all of the subsequent installments. The string tying all this mind meat together will be the Lenten Prayer of St. Ephraim.
While there are many subtly different translations of this prayer, the text I will be using is as follows:
Well, once again it has been a week since I’ve posted. As usual, it’s due to the fact that I’ve been too busy, and mainly because I’ve been out of town. I just spent the last 3 days at the 42nd Diocesan Assembly for the Diocese of the Midwest of the O.C.A. Without going into too much detail, I will simply say that the trip was AWESOME! All agenda items put forward passed overwhelmingly, the fellowship with other priests, deacons, and laymen and women was a true blessing, and I had the great fortune of meeting Fr. Michael Anderson, the youth director for the O.C.A. and also Fr. Robert Kondratick, the Chancellor for the O.C.A. It was my profound honor to sit by Fr. Mike, Fr. Daniel Rentel (our dean) and Igumen Vladimir for dinner. The conversation was heartwarming, as was the vodka and wine…:-) I am so grateful to my parish and the parish council who supported me financially, and for Fr. Joseph who chose to send me as his delegate as he could not attend for medical reasons. As Ginger Clemens said, “One man’s bane is another man’s blessing, eh?” Indeed Ms. Ginger, indeed! The Divine services were more breath-taking than I can describe in words, as was the Cathedral where we held them. I was able to witness the ordinations of Reader Zachariah (Doug Trent) to the Sub-Deaconate, and of Sub-Deacon Philip (Vern Lashbrook) to the Deaconate. I had a great time, and above all, was reminded once again about what a Godly Bishop I have, and was blessed to hear other stories of love about this unassuming man, who is celebrating three different anniversaries (10, 20, and 30 year milestones as Diocesan Bishop, Ordination to the Episcopacy, and Ordination to the priesthood, respectively) and shared his joy and thanksgiving with us all. Thanks be to God for Bp. Job, and may God grant him many years! EIS POLLA ETI, DHESPOTA!