Coronavirus (COVID-19) Updates

 

July 7, 20120

Dear Parishioners,

Please be sure to use the latest link to sign up to attend liturgy. It is https://signup.com/go/QcBzJeD. If you have any problems, please contact Domenic Carr

We look praying with you!

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June 8, 2020

Dear Parishioners,

We thank you for helping make our first Sunday with parishioner attendance again successful! Based on this experience, we have made several slight modifications to the registration process. The guidance below contains the most up-to-date instructions on how to register to attend church on Sundays. Please go to https://signup.com/go/QcBzJeD to register. As always, we appreciate all your patience as we continue to work through things we encounter.  

  1. Please only sign up for 1 Liturgy. We would like to give as many people an opportunity to attend church as possible.
  2. Each week, we will prioritize parishioners who have yet to attend service in previous weeks. If, by Friday at 5pm, the church has not reached full capacity, we will allow those who have attended services in previous week(s) to register for the coming week on a first-come, first-serve basis
  3. If you are an "individual" signing up, i.e. you are the only member of your household registering to attend church, we ask that you register in the "individuals" pews only.  
  4. Each individual must provide valid contact information, including first & last name, home address, phone number, and e-mail address. This information is vital for contact tracing.  We will cross-reference the information with the church's database.
  5. If multiple members of a household (quarantining together) are registering to attend church, we ask that you register in the "family" pews. To reserve a family pew, the registrant for the family must provide complete contact information (i.e. step 4). Then, after reserving the pew, add a comment by clicking "comment" next to the pew you have signed up in, and provide the first and last name of up to 3 additional household members who will be attending. Since all of these people have been quarantining together, the home address, phone number, and email of the registrant should be a valid way to contact all members of the household. 
  6. If the church has not yet reached capacity on Friday at 5pm, any open pew may be reserved.
  7. Each Friday at 5pm, any registrants that have not provided complete registration information will be contacted, if possible, and alerted that their reservation may be canceled. Registrants will have 24 hours to update their information on file before potentially having their reservation canceled.
  8. Each Saturday at 5pm, the registration for the upcoming Sunday Liturgy will close. No registrations will be accepted thereafter. At this time, any registrants with incomplete registrations may have their spots canceled.
  9. If no Memorials or call-ins have been reserved by Friday, the "Holds" on the Memorial pews and the call-in-designated pews will be released, and parishioners can reserve these pews on a first-come, first serve basis.
  10. Registration will only be available for two Sundays at any given time (i.e. the upcoming Sunday and the following Sunday). On Saturday at 5pm, when the registration for the upcoming Sunday is closed, the registration for the Sunday two weeks later will be opened for reservations.

REGISTRATION EXAMPLES

Scenario 1: Maria wants to attend Liturgy this Sunday; she has not registered to attend a service before. She will be the only member of the household to attend service. How should Maria register?
Maria should register in an "Individual" pew. She should provide her full contact info (first name, last name, e-mail, home address, and phone number) and certify the waiver by checking the box indicating that she complies with all the conditions set forth.

Scenario 2: Maria wants to attend Liturgy this Sunday; she has already attended a service before.She will be the only member of the household to attend service. How should Maria register?
Maria should not register right away. Maria should wait until Friday to see if the church has additional capacity. If there is still additional capacity, Maria can register in any pew. She should provide her full contact info (first name, last name, e-mail, home address, and phone number) and certify the waiver by checking the box indicating that she complies with all the conditions set forth.

Scenario 3:  Maria and Dimitri are members of the same household and have been quarantining together. They would like to attend church this Sunday. They have not registered for service before. How should Maria and Dimitri register?
Maria and Dimitri should register in a "Family" pew. Maria can register for both herself and Dimitri. Maria should first reserve a "Family" pew by providing her full contact info (first name, last name, e-mail, home address, and phone number) and certify the waiver by checking the box indicating that she complies with all the conditions set forth. Then, after reserving the pew, Maria should add a comment by clicking "comment" next to the pew she has reserved, and provide the first and last name of Dimitri. 

Scenario 4: Maria and Dimitri are members of the same household and have been quarantining together. They would like to attend church this Sunday, but they have already attended services before. How should Maria and Dimitri register?
Maria and Dimitri should not register right away. They should wait until Friday to see if the church has additional capacity. If there is still additional capacity, they can register in any pew.  If there are still unreserved Family pews, Maria should reserve a family pew by providing her full contact info (first name, last name, e-mail, home address, and phone number) and certify the waiver by checking the box indicating that she complies with all the conditions set forth. Then, after reserving the pew, Maria should add a comment by clicking "comment" next to the pew she has reserved, and provide the first and last name of Dimitri. If there are no unreserved family pews, Maria and Dimitri must each register individually in an "Individuals" pew. Maria should provide her full contact info (first name, last name, e-mail, home address, and phone number) and sign the waiver indicating that she complies with all the conditions set forth; Dimitri should also provide his full contact info (first name, last name, e-mail, home address, and phone number) and certify the waiver by checking the box indicating that he complies with all the conditions set forth.

Scenario 5: Maria, Dimitri, and their daughter Alexandra are members of the same household and have been quarantining together. They would like to attend church this Sunday; they have not attended services before. How should they register?Maria, Dimitri, and Alexandra should register in a "Family" pew. Maria can register for the entire family. Maria should first reserve a "Family" pew by providing her full contact info (first name, last name, e-mail, home address, and phone number) and certify the waiver by checking the box indicating that she complies with all the conditions set forth. Then, after reserving the pew, Maria should add a comment by clicking "comment" next to the pew she has reserved, and provide the first and last name of Dimitri and the first and last name of Alexandra.

Scenario 6: Maria, Dimitri, and their daughters Alexandra, Anastasia, and Paraskevi are members of the same household and have been quarantining together. They would like to attend church this Sunday; they have not attended services before. How should they register?
Unfortunately, due to the family pews being limited to 4 people, all 5 members of the family will not be able to sit together at this time. However, the family can attend by splitting up into 2 family pews (3 in one pew + 2 in another); or the family can split up into 1 family pew (4 in this pew) and 1 individuals pew (1 in this pew). Scenario 3, 4 and 5 describe how to register a family;  Scenario 1 and 2 describe how to register an individual.

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June 1, 2020

Dear Parishioners,  

With the blessing of His Eminence Metropolitan Evangelos, I am very happy to announce that Saint Katherine Greek Orthodox Church will reopen for Liturgy on Sunday, June 7 (9:00am Orthros and 10:00am Divine Liturgy). We have been preparing for weeks in anticipation of being able to worship together again, albeit on a limited and restricted basis. I ask you to please follow all the procedures.

You must register by using the following link https://signup.com/go/yYBGRPm. If you have not registered, you may enter the Narthex to light a candle, but you may not be seated or stay for the service. Knowing that not everyone has access to the Internet, we ask you to please inform people that they can call the Church Office (703-671-1515) and they will be registered for services.

There will be only one entrance to church—the side door facing the Meletis Charuhas Hall. You will be greeted and checked in by a Parish Council member at that door. We have limited seating, so you must be registered. You must also adhere to all recommendations.

Please note:

  1. A member of the Parish Council will escort you to an assigned seat.
  2. A face mask must be worn and the social distancing rule of 6 feet must be practiced.
  3. After lighting candles, please only reverence the icon by doing your cross. Do NOT kiss the icon.
  4. Father Costas will make announcements with directions for an orderly and safe approach for Holy Communion and Dismissal.
  5. Antidoron will be in baggies.
  6. Call the Church Office (703-671-1515) for instructions regarding Memorials. If offered, Koliva must be in individual bags.
  7. We will begin scheduling Baptisms after June 15. Please call the clergy. We have not yet been given permission to schedule weddings.

May the blessings of Our Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God the Father, and the grace of The Holy Spirit be with you.  

See you soon,

Fr. Costas Pavlakos

 

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

  1. Who is considered higher risk and should stay home and watch the services online?
    Anyone with a cold, fever, runny nose, or considered at a higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19, as defined by the CDC, should not attend church services in person.
  1. Are Parish Council members required to ask parishioners health questions before entering church?
    Yes, we are required to ask each parishioner, prior to entry into the church, if they have been in contact with anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19 or if they care for anyone with COVID-19 symptoms. If a parishioner responds “yes”, they will not be allowed to enter the church.
  1. Will I need to wear a face mask and practice social distancing if attending service in person?
    Yes, all individuals and families attending church services must wear face masks as they enter church and practice the 6 foot social distancing requirement. Families may sit together. Pews will be taped off for guidance and Parish Council members will seat you.
  1. What is the seating capacity in church with the social distancing requirements?
    With social distancing of 6 feet between individuals and families, the seating capacity is limited to approximately 50 people (excluding priests, chanters, and staff). Everyone is urged to register at https://signup.com/go/yYBGRPm. A small number of seats will be reserved for those parishioners wishing to attend church service who do not have Internet access. They can register by calling the Church Office (703-671-1515).
  1. Will I need to check in?
    Yes, we are required to register all individuals who attend church in person. We will have a printout of our registered parishioners and will check off names as they enter the church.
  1. Do you have hand sanitizer in church?
    Yes.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Please open the following links, read the information, and follow the directions in order to be permitted to participate in the Liturgy.

Encyclical from His Eminence Metropolitan Evangelos of New Jersey
The Greek Orthodox Metropolis of New Jersey Three Phase Reopening Strategy
COVID-19 Reopening Guidance

Please refer to this COVID Check for valuable information. You can check your symptoms, find a test, and get answers. The "check your symptoms" section should be used before attending church services.

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May 30, 2020

Dear Parishioners of Saint Katherine Greek Orthodox Church,
 
We pray that you are all well and wish to inform you of the reopening of our church for Sunday liturgy. We hope this will be on June 7, the Sunday of Pentecost.
 
We have worked diligently these last few weeks, preparing for Phase One. We will send instructions, no later than June 2, of what you need to do so to that you can participate during the liturgy--in person! We are limited by law as to the number of people that can be in attendance. Therefore, we will have electronic registration, as well as the ability to call the Church Office to register. 
 
Please send your names for the Saturday of Souls liturgy on June 6 so that we can pray for your loved ones. Please send the names to frcostas@stkchurch.com.
 
We eagerly await the joy of being together again. We miss all of you!
 
God's blessings,
Fr. Costa (Konstantinos) Pavlakos

 

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May 25, 2020

Christ is Risen!

Please refer to this Covid Check for valuable information. You can check your symptoms, find a test, and get answers. The "check your symptoms" section should be used before attending church services.

Have a good day.

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May 22, 2020

Dear Parishioners,

Christos Anesti! Christ is Risen!

The reopening of our beloved Saint Katherine Church will be on May 31, 2020. We have eagerly been waiting to welcome you with open arms.

Please open the following links, read the information, and follow the directions in order to be permitted to participate in the Liturgy.

  1. Encyclical from His Eminence Metropolitan Evangelos of New Jersey
  2. The Greek Orthodox Metropolis of New Jersey Three Phase Reopening Strategy
  3. COVID-19 Reopening Guidance
  4. Registration for Each Individual (adults and children) -- Link forthcoming

Over the last two weeks, we have been preparing our church to establish an orderly process. You will be welcomed and checked in by parish council member, and then escorted to an assigned seat.

  1. The priest will make announcements prior to Holy Communion and Dismissal.
  2. A basket will be at the entrance to the Nave for you to make an offering. We will not pass trays.
  3. Antidoron will be in baggies and distributed only at the end of Liturgy.
  4. Koliva must be in individual bags prior to the service. Call the Church Office for instructions.
  5. Orthros will be celebrated at 9:00am with Liturgy following at 10:00am.

If you are in a high risk category as defined by the CDC, have symptoms or have had exposure to someone with symptoms, we urge you to remain home and enjoy the online services until you can safely return to the church. 

Additional information will be posted on the church website to register for services.

See you soon.

God’s blessings,

Fr. Costas Pavlakos, Proistamenos       
Ray Vazquez, Parish Council President

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May 18, 2020

Christos Anesti! 

On Tuesday, May 26 at 12:30pm, His Eminence Metropolitan Evangelos of New Jersey will celebrate a prayer service for the restoration of health for those afflicted with COVID-19 on Tuesday, May 26 at 12:30pm. Please see the Announcement Notice for more information. Please submit names for the prayer service by visiting https://forms.gle/YR61H3gSaEj9xxnz9. Thank you.

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May 9, 2020

Mother's Day 2020 Video Message from our Proistamenos, Father Costas Pavlakos

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April 19, 2020

Pascha 2020 Video Message from our Proistamenos, Father Costas Pavlakos

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April 13, 2020

A Holy Week 2020 Video Message from our Proistamenos, Father Costas Pavlakos

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April 8, 2020

“Far be it from me to glory except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.” ~ Galatians 6:14

 

Beloved in Christ,

I write to you bearing the good news that our dear Father Costas is out of the hospital, and Presvytera Pauline continues to progress in making her way towards being discharged. While their collective health continues to improve, the road to a full recovery for both is one which requires our supportive prayers, as it will take a great deal of patience and God-given strength. Unfortunately, this also means that Father will not be able to be physically present for the upcoming Holy Week. Rest assured, that I will do my best to serve on his behalf, and on yours, as we continue our work as a community in Christ.

With that said, we have arrived at the point of departure…

The journey ahead requires preparation, though very few of us will feel prepared. Where we are going does not require any baggage, though many of us bring it. The destination remains to be unknown, though we share in glimpses of its promise. All efforts have brought us to this place; for some, it may be the first time, and for others it may be the eightieth. No matter the number of times we have taken this trip, it is ever-renewed each time we participate. Time and space have been suspended – we have arrived at the Holy City of Jerusalem.

Even though we will continue to participate virtually, we will remain spiritually united through the events of our Lord’s Passion. Together we will witness Christ’s welcome into this Holy City. We will hear the chants of the people as they exclaim “Hosanna, in the highest”, as some have seen, and others have heard that this Man’s presence awakens the dead. We will join with His Apostles in the Holy City, where we will be called to dine with Him, as well as behold a most bitter betrayal. Together we will see the radical movements against a failed system of governance, and the condemnation of Innocence. We will experience the anger and contempt of a lost and fallen world. We will stand at the feet of a dead God and remember how it feels to be truly forsaken. And as we lay Him in His Tomb, we will notice that something has changed.

Through His Death, we will realize the depth of our love for Him. Through His Death, that love will empower a revolution from within. Through His Death, a spirit of repentance and renewal will be born. Through His Death, the bonds of this world are going to be made meaningless. Through His Death, our lives will exist for a purpose that is beyond intellect, above knowledge, and greater than that of the visible universe. Through His Death, all of Creation will be made new, again. Through His Death, we will be liberated. 

As per the pastoral directives of our Metropolis, the usual material (ie. flowers, palms, candles, and the Holy Light) will not be distributed. However, let us not be “choked with the cares and riches and pleasures of this life” (Lk. 8:14) but let us continue our works of Faith through fasting , prayer and virtue, strengthening our commitment to “gain Christ” (Phil. 3:8). So that together, we may arrive at the conclusion of this Great and Holy Week as a people who are ready to be changed. Only then, may we then find ourselves properly equipped; waiting in expectation of His Third Day Resurrection.

Prayerfully I remain your servant in He Who Is,

Fr. Nikolas Delaveris
Assistant Priest
Saint Katherine Greek Orthodox Church
 
Live stream the services – see 'Holy Week and Pascha 2020' schedule on the home page (now with two views to choose from): https://video.nest.com/live/Hi2qv49EiX and https://video.nest.com/live/RQB6iwVcuB 
 
Wondering how to “participate virtually”? Check out our blog: https://dwellalwaysinprayer.wordpress.com/2020/03/24/live-streaming-vs-dead-recession/
 
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April 2, 2020

“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, the Lord our God will be with you wherever you go.” – Joshua 1:9

Beloved parishioners and families of Saint Katherine Greek Orthodox Church,

As we look to Scripture for comfort, we see that there are numerous examples of struggle and despair in both the Old and New Testament. God does not promise us a life without pain, sickness, sin and death. He promises us that during these times, He will be with us to give us strength, courage, inspiration and ultimately, growth. He then seals these promises by showing us time and time again that pain, sickness, sin and death have been conquered through His Son, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

In our efforts to manifest His presence in your respective homes or places of work, we once again will livestream our Divine Services in accordance with the protocols set forth by the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America. These protocols state that: “For all services, including the Divine Liturgy, only one priest and one chanter will conduct the services; meaning, the Faithful will not assemble, but participate virtually via the Internet and multimedia.” Let us therefore, rejoice as we are able to virtually gather for these services. Most immediately will be the following:

Friday, April 3, Akathist Hymn at 7pm

April 5, Sunday of Saint Mary of Egypt: Orthros at 9am & Liturgy at 10am

The Eparchial Synod of our Archdiocese will be meeting Monday, April 6th to determine how we are to proceed for Holy Week. No matter the outcome, please know that all of these decisions by our hierarchs are being made out of the prayerful love and concern of the faithful. Despite our inability to gather in one place for worship, technology still offers us the opportunity for us to connect. Be assured that as we perform the prescribed services of our Great and Holy Church in this restricted manner, we join the Orthodox Christians around the world in “pray[ing] for the whole world and for its speedy relief from this trial.”

It is our hope and prayer that the “spiritual” fellowship we partake in through the use of this technology will remind us to be strong and courageous as the Lord our God is with us wherever we go.

As a final note, I regret to inform you that our dear Father Costas is currently in the hospital recovering from COVID-19.  Thankfully, he is doing well and is under excellent care.  God willing, he will be discharged soon, and will do our best to keep you updated of his condition. While phone calls, texts, and cards certainly a nice gesture, the very best thing that we can do for his recovery is keep both him and Presvytera Pauline in your daily prayers. 

Through the prayers of the Theotokos, the saints, the fathers and mothers of the Church, and of all Christians worldwide, may we endure this trial and tribulation, by God’s Grace and Mercy,

Fr. Nikolas Delaveris
Assistant Priest
Saint Katherine Greek Orthodox Church

Click here to view our live stream: https://video.nest.com/live/Hi2qv49EiX

Wondering how to “participate virtually”? Check out our blog: https://dwellalwaysinprayer.wordpress.com/2020/03/24/live-streaming-vs-dead-recession/

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March 29, 2020

THE GOOD NEWS IS THE MESSAGE OF THE GOSPEL

I greet you with “Kalimera!” or “Good Day!” because “this is the day the Lord has made let us be glad and rejoice in it.” I have been praying every day for each of you, for our community, and the world. I am not myself exempt from the suffering of this situation, but it can become for us a time of great stress or a time to ask the Lord to strength our faith—the kind of spiritual uplifting that allows us to experience the Love of God and the Grace of The Holy Spirit.

We have been using electronic media to send you messages of hope and the Good News of the Gospel. I want to inform you that 30 families in our parish have volunteered to deliver food and provide other assistance to those in need. The parish council, with Ray Vazquez’s leadership, has been conducting almost daily online meetings. We had a two-hour meeting last night, putting into place a plan to reopen our schools and all our ministries. Saint Katherine has a very long history of caring not only for our own people but for our neighbors.

I have informed you that you can reach out to your priests anytime. Some days it takes me more than five hours just to respond to your emails, texts, and calls. This is a good thing. I also ask you to use your phone to call your friends and family and keep in touch with those who are in need, especially the elderly the people who are most vulnerable. Philoptochos has maintained a call list and outreach to those who they have identified that need to be comforted. Fr. Nikolas has launched our blog. Yesterday, he had an online GOYA Bible Study and Get-Together to keep our young in touch with their faith. The Adult Bible Study has been meeting remotely. We have an updated web page that Presvytera Pauline updates several times a day. The good news so far is that everyone in the community is fine. Thank you, God. If you want relief, check out all the various sites that you can access from your computers, laptops, tablets, and/or phones.

The Healing of a Boy with a Spirit
“And when they came to the disciples, they saw a great crowd about them, and scribes arguing with them. And immediately all the crowd, when they saw him, were greatly amazed, and ran up to him and greeted him. And he asked them, ‘What are you discussing with them?’ And one of the crowd answered him, ‘Teacher, I brought my son to you, for he has a dumb spirit; and wherever it seizes him, it dashes him down; and he foams and grinds his teeth and becomes rigid; and I asked your disciples to cast it out, and they were not able.’ And he answered them, ‘O faithless generation, how long am I to be with you? How long am I to bear with you? Bring him to me.’ And they brought the boy to him; and when the spirit saw him, immediately it convulsed the boy, and he fell on the ground and rolled about, foaming at the mouth. And Jesus asked his father, ‘How long has he had this?’ And he said, ‘From childhood. And it has often cast him into the fire and into the water, to destroy him; but if you can do anything, have pity on us and help us.’ And Jesus said to him, ‘If you can! All things are possible to him who believes.’ Immediately the father of the child cried out and said, ‘I believe; help my unbelief!’ And when Jesus saw that a crowd came running together, he rebuked the unclean spirit, saying to it, ‘You dumb and deaf spirit, I command you, come out of him, and never enter him again.’ And after crying out and convulsing him terribly, it came out, and the boy was like a corpse; so that most of them said, ‘He is dead.’ But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him up, and he arose. And when he had entered the house, his disciples asked him privately, ‘Why could we not cast it out?’ And he said to them, ‘This kind cannot be driven out by anything but prayer and fasting.’” (Mark 9:24-29)

The Gospel lesson centers around the inability of the Twelve to heal the mute, deaf and “moonstruck” (Matthew 17:15) boy, whose father was at his wits end.  This was not the first time the Twelve had tried to cast out demons; they had been doing this now for six to nine months.  And they had been doing it quite well, thank you!  So well, in fact, that they had a dispute among them as to who was the greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven immediately following this episode (Matthew 18:1-5, Luke 9:46-48).

In referring to the Twelve and the boy’s father, Jesus used different forms of the word faith or belief (Greek: pistia). When the Twelve asked why they couldn’t cast out the demon, Jesus said, “Because of your little-faith” or oligo-pistia (Matthew 17:20). Referring to the boy’s father, Jesus said, “O unbelieving or apistos generation” (Mark 9:19). The boy’s father later said (Mark 9:24), “I believe (Greek: pisteuo); help my unbelief” (Greek: apistia). From apistia, the opposite of pistia, we get the English word apostasy. Thus, the Twelve had a weak faith, but the boy’s father was still in darkness.

Saint Cyril of Alexandria states, “It was the duty of the father of the lad to lay the blame upon his own unbelief (Mark 9:23-24), rather than upon the holy Apostles. For this reason, Christ justly called out, ‘O unbelieving and perverse generation; how long shall I be with you; how long shall I put up with you?’ (Mark 9:19) He justly therefore calls both the man himself, and those of like mind, an apostate generation. It is a wretched sickness, and whoever is seized by it is perverse and utterly without knowledge to walk uprightly.”

John Chrysostom added to this that while the father had no belief at all, “If You can do anything, help us” (Mark 9:22), others who came to Jesus were not like that.  For example, the leper said, “If You are willing You can make me clean” (Matthew 8:2). In our Gospel lesson, Jesus responded to the father by playing his words back to him, “If you can believe all things are possible” (Mark 9:23). The boy’s father was ungrateful for everything he was given. “While the father uttered speech that was in no way worthy of His power, Jesus proceeded to show him that even he (the father) could do this and much more. In fact, the Lord’s care had been apparent even before the father brought his son to Jesus. For the demon (Mark 9:22) had thrown the boy both into the fire and into the water to destroy him, but to no avail.”

If we apply this to our lives, we might ask ourselves how we approach a service of Holy Oil for healing. Do we approach in faith, with little faith or with apostasy? The Grace available is still Christ’s and we should be careful not to find fault with the Grace given to the priest in charge. When the Twelve asked Jesus why they couldn’t cast out the demon, as they had been doing before, Jesus replied with two answers:  (1) their little-faith and (2) “this kind of demon can come out by nothing but prayer and fasting” (Mark 9:29).

He compared their little faith to a mustard seed. Earlier He had said, “The kingdom of Heaven is like a mustard seed, which a man took and sowed in his field, which indeed is the least of all the seeds. When it is grown it is greater than all the herbs and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and nest in its branches” (Matthew 13:31-32). Here, applying the mustard seed analogy to faith, He said, “If you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain: ‘Move from here to there’, and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you” (Matthew 17:20).

I challenge all of us to take to heart the words of our Lord, “Everything is possible for one who believes.” Take some time to pray. Fast, and receive the blessings of our Lord.

Kathisma I. ?χος πλ. δ?. Α?τ?μελον. Mode pl. 4. Automelon.

?ν?στης ?κ νεκρ?ν, ? ζω? τ?ν?π?ντων, κα? ?γγελος φωτ?ς, τα?ς Γυναιξ?ν?β?α? Πα?σασθε τ?ν δακρ?ων, το?ς?ποστ?λοις ε?αγγελ?σασθε, κρ?ξατε?νυμνο?σαι? ?τι ?ν?στη Χριστ?ς ? Κ?ριος,? ε?δοκ?σας σ?σαι ?ς Θε?ς, τ? γ?νος τ?ν?νθρ?πων.

When You, the Life of all, from the dead resurrected, a shining Angel cried to the lamenting women, “Cease from your tears. Announce unto the Apostles the tidings full of joy. Cry out in exaltation, that Christ the Lord has arisen from the dead. For He swilled to save the human race, as God, in His good pleasure.”

May the love of God the Father and the grace of the Holy Spirit be with you!

In Christ,
Fr. Costas

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March 24, 2020

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

With church activities and services canceled or greatly scaled back and as we join the battle to contain the COVID-19 pandemic, we implore all members of our Saint Katherine Parish to support local businesses and especially those that have supported our community.

We have compiled a list of restaurants that support our church with generous food donations during the spring and fall Greek Festivals, church meetings and activities.

There are several ways to support our local Restaurants during this unprecedented crisis:

  • Order Take-Out
  • Purchase a gift card for future purchases
  • Order delivery through Uber Eats, Doordash etc. 

As this is a dynamic situation, contact your local restaurant directly to find the best way to support their business.  Many restaurants are offering delivery. Call ahead to reserve seating if limited seating service is provided. Restaurants that were bustling just days ago now sit empty and business owners are unsure when and if they will re-open.
 
Please support our local Restaurants. The safety measures that have forced all of us indoors are the right thing to do to stop the spread of COVID-19.  We are confident that together we can overcome this pandemic, but we also recognize that our small business owners need us now more than ever to survive.

~Your Fellow Servants in Christ

LIST AS OF 3/22/2020
Here is a list of the restaurants, with phone numbers and website links. Please call the restaurants to check for hours of operation and what services they are providing.

If you own a restaurant and your business is not on our list please contact Jim Kontzamanys at jimbosGrill1@aol.com

Kali orexi!

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March 22, 2020

Dear Stewards and Friends of Saint Katherine,

I pray that all of you continue to stay healthy during this time.

In the last 24 hours, I was informed that one of our Parishioners who attended services last Sunday has been exposed to a Parishioner who has recently tested positive for COVID-19.  Both our Parishioners are currently isolated and under medical care.  I pray for their quick recovery.  

I encourage all of our Parishioners to adhere to CDC preventive measures and guidance as a form of community care. As testing increases over the next week, we should assume that community transmission of COVID-19 is likely. Community members may wish to stay home, even if they feel fine, except for essential trips. Essential trips might include trips to doctors, hospitals, pharmacies, grocery stores, banks, and gas stations. 

The CDC advises that anyone who is ill should self-isolate and contact their physician for further guidance. 

Regardless of whether you stay home, please continue practicing preventive measures recommended by the CDC, such as social distancing, covering your sneeze or cough, and frequent hand washing. Social distancing has proven to be extremely effective and involves maintaining at least six feet of separation between yourself and others, as well as limiting your time around groups of more than ten people. You may wish to review some of the resources that the CDC has made available for communities that have experienced a confirmed COVID-19 case.  https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prepare/protect-home.html

The CDC site can help you monitor your own family’s health and address some of the concerns that this news may raise.

In Christ, 
Ray Vazquez
Parish Council President

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March 22, 2020

We rise early and we extol You, for through Your Cross we found peace that passes all understanding. Through it You the Savior of the world, renewed the human race, leading us to the unsetting light (Orthros Ode V).

We have been separated from one another, just as sin separates us from God. Yet God, through His coming again in the flesh annihilates the sin that separates us. Jesus Christ rejoins us to God the Father—the Creation joins the Creator.

Christ was willing to love us and picked up His cross. We will, in due time, gather and fill the pews, fill the chanter stand, fill the altar, fill the choir loft, and fulfill the desire to be together as the people of God (Ekklesia). We will praise him, glorify Him, and receive Him.

This COVID-19 pandemic shows us what life is like when we are separated. I miss your embracing arms and interaction. I miss you tremendously, but I suspect that is how God feels when we are not willing to be with Him. There is nothing sadder than to be in our church alone. It is sad, not because God is absent, it is sad because YOU are absent. Therefore, today, on the feast of the Holy Cross, the third Sunday of Lent, our attention to and anticipation of the Resurrection becomes the focus of life.

Today, I share this message of hope and pray that this sin of separation will be dispelled. It is not only my prayer that this cup be taken away (Matthew 26:39), it is the prayer of Fr. Nikolas, the choir, the chanters, the parish council, the teacher, the Philoptochos…you get it, it is everyone’s prayer. It is also the prayer that the Lord, through the power of His Resurrection, will lift us out of this place of darkness, sickness, and suffering. Like the Passover sacrifice of the Old Testament, the sign of the Cross is an acknowledgment of His grace, love, and protection. His Cross is the power of New Life, Eternal Life, a life that we should have as His people.

Do not despair. Do not give up. Job was righteous before God. The Evil One tried--even with all the suffering he bestowed on Job, he could not separate Job from God. God and Job were victorious over evil, just as you and I are victorious over evil. I pray that the power of the Cross and the strength of Job will call us to embrace God together in prayer and allow us to be together soon. We see Jesus Christ in each other and in our midst. Not even the gate of hell shall prevail over His Church!

O Lord, save your people and bless your inheritance.

May the grace of Our Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, be with all of you (2 Corinthians 13:14).
~Fr. Costa

Σ?σον, Κ?ριε, τ?ν λα?ν σου κα?
ε?λ?γησον τ?ν κληρονοµ?αν σου, ν?κας το?ς
βασιλε?σι κατ? βαρβ?ρων δωρο?µενος,
κα? τ? σ?ν φυλ?ττων δι? το? Σταυρο? σου
πολ?τευµα.
?ρθρος - Κυρ, 22 Μαρ

Save, O Lord, Your people and bless Your
inheritance, granting victory to the faithful
over the enemy, and by Your Cross protecting
Your commonwealth. [GOA]
Orthros, Sunday, 22 March
 

Resurrectional Apolytikion
?χος βαρ?ς. Grave Mode.
Κατ?λυσας τ? Σταυρ? σου τ?ν
θ?νατον, ?ν??ξας τ? Λ?στ? τ?ν
Παρ?δεισον, τ?ν Μυροφ?ρων τ?ν θρ?νον
µετ?βαλες, κα? το?ς σο?ς ?ποστ?λοις
κηρ?ττειν ?π?ταξας? ?τι ?ν?στης Χριστ? ?
Θε?ς, παρ?χων τ? κ?σµ? τ? µ?γα ?λεος.

By means of Your Cross, O Lord, You
abolished death. To the robber You opened
Paradise. The lamentation of the myrrhbearing women You transformed, and You
gave Your Apostles the order to proclaim to
all that You had risen, O Christ our God, and
granted the world Your great mercy. [SD]

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March 21, 2020

Dearest Parishioners,
 
I pray that this email finds you well as you continue on your spiritual journey through Great Lent. We are halfway to Pascha!! Kali dynami!
 
As we will not celebrate services at Saint Katherine for a while, please sign into one of the following livestreams so that you are able to participate in the liturgical life of our Church:  
 
Ascension Greek Orthodox Church in Fairview, NJ
 
St. Barbara Greek Orthodox Church in Toms River, NJ
 
Praying that our Lord and Savior continues to bless and protect you through the power of His Cross, I am
 
Yours in Christ,
Fr. Costa
 
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March 19, 2020

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

I pray you are well and adjusting to this "new normal."

His Eminence Metropolitan Evangelos of New Jersey is distributing this electronic version of Daily Orthodox Rules of Prayer, courtesy of Rev. Fr. John L. Johns, to enhance your daily prayer life during this most difficult and trying time.

God bless,
Fr. Costa

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March 18, 2020

Dearest Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
 
Attached is a message from His Eminence Metropolitan Evangelos of New Jersey regarding services, as per the decision of the Holy and Sacred Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople.  Sadly, all services are cancelled.  As I receive updates, I will forward them to you. 
 
I wanted to also inform you, due to the threat of this outbreak, the office will be closed. 
 
I ask for your patience and your prayers for all as we are in this time of difficulty.  
 
God bless,
Fr. Costa
 
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March 18, 2020
 
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
 
I pray that, as you read this, you are all well.  We are using all means possible to keep you informed and provide for your with your spiritual needs.
 
I asked Fr. Nikolas to create a blog so we can distribute inspiring messages and have a means of communicating with each other as a virtual Saint Katherine community. Please visit https://dwellalwaysinprayer.wordpress.com.
 
We have a list of parishioners who have volunteered to shop for those who need assistance. If you would like to be added to list of volunteers, please email frcostas@stkchurch.com or call 571-213-1109.
 
We have added to the liturgical schedule to better enable us to pray together. The schedule of services streaming live is below:
 

Sundays: Orthros  9:00am | 10:00 am Divine Liturgy

Mondays: Compline 7:00pm

Tuesdays: 3rd and 6th Hours 12:00pm 

Thursdays:  3rd and 6th Hours 12:00pm

Fridays: Salutations 7:00pm

We will celebrate the feastday of the Annunciation with the following services:
  Tuesday, March 24 7:00pm Great Vespers 
  Wednesday, March 25 9:00am Orthros | 10:00am  Divine Liturgy

You can access all of these services at www.agesinitiatives.com

Your clergy and parish council are committed to serving you and fervently pray for the end of this pandemic. We have been working towards preserving capital to meet the needs of our church, including caring for those we employ so they can meet the needs of their families. Please, I ask you to take a minute and prayerfully submit your stewardship to Saint Katherine. You can make an electronic donation  or mail your contribution to Saint Katherine, 3149 Glen Carlyn Road,  Falls Church,  VA 22041.

May the intercessions of our Patron Saint Katherine and the blessings of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.

In Christ, 
Fr. Costas

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March 17, 2020

My beloved brothers and sisters in Christ,

I would like to inform you of the revised schedule for Saint Katherine Greek Orthodox Church. Due to the ever-changing situation surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, all parishioners are asked to abstain from all activities at the church, including liturgical services, from today through April 10. We hope to resume “open” church service on April 11, Saturday of Lazarus. Until that time, liturgical services will be offered via Saint Katherine Live! (https://video.nest.com/live/Hi2qv49EiX). These include:

Sundays, 9:00am Orthros | 10:00am Divine Liturgy
March 22, Sunday of the Holy Cross
March 29, Sunday of Saint John Climacus
April 5, Sunday of Saint Mary of Egypt

Mondays, 7:00pm
March 23, Compline
March 30, Compline
April 6, Compline

Fridays, 7:00pm
March 20, 3rd Salutations
March 27, 4th Salutations
April 3, Akathist Hymn

Acknowledging that things can change at a moment’s notice, please know that updates will be sent via our church listserv (email) and posted to our COVID-19 webpage (http://www.saint-katherines.org/announcements/coronavirus).

Even if we cannot be present inside the church itself, we can be close to our Lord through prayer.

I remind you that Fr. Nickolas and I are available to anyone to care for their spiritual needs.

In Christ,
Fr. Costas

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March 15, 2020

Dear Parishioners,

I pray that you are all well under these extreme circumstances surrounding the coronavirus (COVID-19). I urge you not to panic, but prepare. Also, take this time to reflect and pray.

As I said I would after each liturgy this morning, I am sending an update regarding the church service for tomorrow, Monday, March 16. We will celebrate the hours starting at 7:00pm. If anyone wishes to be anointed, please remain in the church following the service and I will anoint you.

Our church doors will remain open and we will celebrate the services listed in the DOXA and online at http://saint-katherines.org/about_us/schedule-of-services. If you wish to follow the church services LIVE online, please go to go to our church website saint-katherines.org and click on the red Saint Katherine Live! button or go directly to https://video.nest.com/live/Hi2qv49EiX. If you do not have liturgical texts, you can find them by following the directions below or downloading "Digital Chant Stand" from the App Store (iPhone and iPad).

  1. Visit http://agesinitiatives.com.
  2. Click on “AGES DCS” (the middle choice).
  3. Choose the date.
  4. Choose the service.
  5. Choose the format. (We suggest GR-EN, PDF/Print.)
  6. Follow along on your device or print the service at home. 

May our Lord bless and protect you.

God bless,
Fr. Costa

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March 13, 2020

Dear Saint Katherine Parishioners and Concerned Parties,
 
We write, not in fear, but in hope. During these trying and uncertain times, know that we place our faith and hope in our Lord to guide us. We are all aware of the heightened medical and health concerns due to the COVID-19 outbreak. These concerns have intensified over the last 24 hours. We have been monitoring all government recommendations and are following protocol to ensure everyone’s safety .
 
We now feel it is the appropriate time to take the following actions as a parish:
  1. All Liturgical worship services will be held as scheduled.
  2. All church activities and ministries will be cancelled until the end of the month.
  3. All the schools (Paideia, Greek School, and Sunday School) will be cancelled until the end of the month.
  4. The clergy and staff will work to ensure that all your spiritual needs are met.
  5. We will not have Coffee Hour after Liturgy.
Our church facilities are being regularly disinfected and cleaned. We ask you to please carefully consider your personal health conditions and the well being of our parishioners before attending any services. If you are sick or are in one of the at risk groups, stay home. We will update you via the Internet at http://www.saint-katherines.org/announcements/coronavirus. This page will be updated immediately upon receipt of new information. 
 
As we know, the services and sacraments are lifegiving and bring healing of body and soul. During the unusual times in which we are living, let us all use this season of Great Lent to focus more on Jesus Christ and His message of eternal life, rather than focus on the fear that the evil one brings to our temporal world. It is our eternal soul about which we should be most concerned as we navigate the days ahead.
 
We have scheduled the Sacrament of Holy Unction for this Monday evening, March 16, 7:00pm, so that we may entreat the Lord our God for the healing and protection of our body and soul. We will pray together, united in our Lord as one family, loving and taking care of each other.
 
Take courage that we will get through this. Remember the words of the Gospel, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life" (John 3:16).
 
God's blessings,
 
Rev. Fr. Konstantinos Pavlakos and Ray Vazquez
 
Don't panic, but prepare as best you can. Please think about high-risk individuals and stay home if you feel ill.