Nativity Play - 12/12/2021
At fellowship on Sunday, Dec 12 the Sunday School of Christ the Saviour Orthodox Church (Harrisburg, PA) held its annual Nativity Play, entitled "It's Jesus' Birthday" written by our very own - Fr. Dan Kovalak.
We are thankful to our dedicated teachers, parents, and students who make such a wonderful effort each year - edifying and entertaining all of us! May God grant them many blessed years!
At the conclusion of the program the children were treated to a visit from "St. Nicholas"!
Nativity Fast Lectures - 12/17/2021
Throughout the Nativity fast the community of Christ the Saviour was edified through a series of talks entitled "Finding Christ in Christmas" organized by our Adult Education Ministry. We are so thankful for their dedication to the continued discipleship of our faithful!
Please visit this past seasons talks as well as ones from past years on our website at - https://www.ctshbg.org/lectures
Note: Unfortunately, we had technical issues, and the first lecture of this series was not recorded.
Thanksgiving - 11/25/2021
Thank you to the faithful of Christ the Saviour (Harrisburg, PA) for their generosity in supporting our annual food drive for Thanksgiving. Over a dozen turkeys, a carload of dry and canned goods, and $700 in gift cards was delivered to our community partners in Harrisburg. Glory to God for all things!
Sacrament of Chrismation - 11/14/2021
On Sunday, November 14 the faithful of Christ the Saviour were over-joyed to receive Raymond (Theodore) and Amy (Emelia) Rieck and their children Gordon (Artemios), Maren (Elizabeth), and Morgan (Atticus); and Melissa (Irene) Hanna and her daughters Tressa and Sarai into the Orthodox Church through the Sacrament of Chrismation. May the Holy Spirit continue to “lead them into all Truth” and grant them many blessed years!
Annual Eritrean/Ethiopian Fellowship - 11/07/2021
On Sunday, November 7th following Divine Liturgy our parish family of Christ the Saviour Orthodox Church (Harrisburg) enjoyed its Annual Eritrean/Ethiopian Fellowship. We were blessed to share in the sights, sounds, smells, and tastes of two of the many cultures that constitute our ethnically diverse parish family. A special thanks to those who prepared and served the meal, as well as those that prepared the special coffee and tea that was enjoyed by all - thank you!
"Thank you" in Amharic (Ethiopian)
አመሰግናለሁ - Ameseg-inalehugn!
"Thank you" in Tigrinya (Eritrean)
የቐንየለይ! - Yeken-yeley!
NOTE: this event is held annually, the Sunday before the beginning of the Nativity Fast.
Youth Group Service Project - 11/06/2021
On Saturday, November 6th the youth group at Christ the Saviour Orthodox Church (Harrisburg, PA) offered their time and talents for a service project at Paxton Ministries, a residential home for adults with developmental disabilities. Our youth cleaned windows, washed vehicles, cleaned up leaves, and even got to cheer on the residents in their Halloween parade! Glory to God for all things!
2021 Slavic + Food Fest - 10/02/2021
From Saturday, October 2nd- Sunday October 3rd the community of Christ the Saviour (Harrisburg) held its annual Slavic "Plus" Food Fest. We welcomed hundreds of our parishioners, neighbors and friends to enjoy a "taste" of several of the many cultures that constitutes our ethnically diverse community. Guests were treated to homemade pierogies, halupki, and halushki, as well as Macedonian hamburgers, kielbasa sandwiches, and a variety of pastries and baked goods. The "Plus" represents our Eritrean (East African) community that provided a spicy chicken stew called tsebhi derho, and a vegetable dish called alicha, which was served along with injera (thin spongy bread), and himbasha (desert bread). In conjunction with the Food Fest, we also held our annual basket raffle. It was especially nice to offer this event after postponing it in 2020 due to the pandemic.
Many visitors made their first trip into our beautiful Orthodox Church, which was open for tours throughout the two-day event. We pray that while our guests filled their bellies for the day, they might have found that "one thing needful" that will nourish their souls for eternity. Glory to God for all things!
NOTE: Our Food Fest is held annually, the first weekend in October.
Weekend of Worship, Service and Fellowship - 09/26/2021
On the weekend of Sat, Sept 25 - Sun, Sept 26 the community of Christ the Saviour was blessed with a wonderful weekend of worship, service and fellowship. On Sat, Sept 25 we partnered with Rebuilding Together Harrisburg (link) to offer "love in action" to a neighbor in need. Our crew spent the morning working on clearing out accumulated items from the garage and shed, weeding and landscaping, as well as putting a drop ceiling in the kitchen. In a few short hours, much was accomplished by God's grace. That same evening we celebrated a beautiful Resurrectional Vespers, giving glory to God for the opportunity to serve Him, as we served our neighbor. On Sun, Sept 26, following a beautiful Divine Liturgy our parish youth group organized and hosted its first annual Cornhole Tournament. We welcomed 20 teams (40 participants) for a friendly competition. Over $1,700 was raised to help our youth group in planning a domestic mission trip. Congratulations to our tournament champions - Arun Gopinath and Brendan Zeppuhar. Glory to God for all things!
Visit from Fr. Nicholas and M. Anastasia - 09/19/2021
On Sunday, Sept 19 the community of Christ the Saviour welcomed the Mitred Ap. Nicholas and M. Anastasia Molodyko-Harris for Liturgy and for our quarterly book discussion following fellowship. Our St. Jerome Book Club (under the auspices of our adult education ministry) read “A Parish for All Alaska” which chronicles the 32-year ministry of the Harris family in Anchorage and the Diocese of Alaska. We thank God for their faithful witness to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. May God grant them many blessed years!
Our next selection is “Thinking Orthodox” by Dr. Jeannie Constantinou. The discussion is scheduled for Sunday, Jan 16 (2022) at 1pm.
Dormition - 08/15/2021
On Saturday, Aug 14 and Sunday, Aug 15 the community at Christ the Saviour in Harrisburg celebrated the Great Feast of the Dormition (Falling Asleep) of the Theotokos (Mother of God). At the Vespers the plaschenitsa of the Theotokos was entombed for the edification and veneration of the faithful. The following day at the Divine Liturgy we offered special prayers for Vasile and Elena Murariu for their 30th Wedding Anniversary and for our students and teachers as they return to school. We also blessed the flowers & herbs brought to honor the feast, as well as 48 backpacks will be distributed to students in our school district as part of the FOCUS Backpack program. Glory to God for His rich gifts!
Kontakion of the Feast - Neither the tomb, nor death could hold the Theotokos, who is constant in prayer and our firm hope in her intercessions. For being the Mother of Life, she was translated to life by the One who dwelt in her virginal womb.
Feast of St. Herman of Alaska - 08/09/2021
On Monday, Aug 9 the community of Christ the Saviour was joined by members of our pan-Orthodox community to celebrate the feast of St. Herman of Alaska.
Troparion — Tone 4: O blessed Father Herman of Alaska, north star of Christ’s holy Church, the light of your holy life and great deeds guides those who follow the Orthodox way. Together we lift high the Holy Cross you planted firmly in America. Let all behold and glorify Jesus Christ, singing his holy Resurrection.
Hierarchical Visitation - 08/08/2021
On Sunday, August 8th, His Eminence Archbishop Mark made a hierarchical visitation to the community of Christ the Saviour Orthodox Church. At the Liturgy he awarded Fr. Stephen Vernak the jeweled Cross on behalf of the Synod of Bishops. The Rt. Rev. Daniel Kovalak and V. Rev. David Vernak concelebrated the Divine Liturgy along with Dn. John Shingara. At the conclusion of the service newlyweds Eric and Otilia Schubert had the prayers of the removal of the crowns offered. Our community is thankful to Ab. Mark, clergy, servers, choir, and the assembled faithful for a beautiful and inspiring Liturgy!
Annual Vehicle Blessing - 07/18/2021
On Sunday July 18, the community of Christ the Saviour celebrated our annual vehicle blessing in honor of the feast of the great Prophet Elijah (July 20th).
"O Lord our God, Who dost ride upon the Cherubim; Who walks on the wings of the wind; Who didst send Thy servant the Prophet Elijah a chariot of fire, and Who with Thine All-Holy Spirit has inspired and guided the human mind to invent various and expedient means of transportation and travel: We give Thee thanks, O Master, for Thou has provided us, Thy servants, with these vehicles to serve our different needs." (Excerpt from the Prayer of Blessing of Vehicles)
Chrismations - 06/20/2021
On Sunday, June 20 the faithful of Christ the Saviour celebrated the great and holy feast of Pentecost. At the Liturgy we welcomed Matthew Deamer, and Andrew, Bekah, Nathan, Devin Joshua, Ava, & Liam Thomas Brown into the Orthodox Church through the Sacrament of Chrismation. May the Holy Spirit continue to “lead them into all Truth”.
2021 Graduates - 06/06/2021
On Sunday, June 6 the community of Christ the Saviour celebrated the final Sunday of Pascha, dedicated to the Blind Man, with a festal procession at the conclusion of the Divine Liturgy. We also recognized our Class of 2021 Graduates. May the Lord continue to guide and bless them, as some continue in their studies, and others begin to apply their education in the workforce! Glory to God for all things!
Holy Pascha - 05/02/2021
Christ is Risen! Христос Воскресе!
Χριστός Ανέστη! المسيحقام!
Late Saturday evening (May 1), and “while it was still dark” into Sunday (May 2), our community gathered for the “Feast of feasts, and Holy Day of holy days” - Great and Holy Pascha! This year, due to indoor gathering restrictions, we gathered under a large tent... glory to God for all things! Abundant thanks to all who worked so tirelessly to make it possible - Christ is Risen!
(Ode 1 - Canon of Holy Pascha)
It is the day of Resurrection, let us be illumined O ye people, Pascha, the Pascha of the Lord, from death unto Life and from earth unto Heaven has Christ our God led us singing the song of Victory! Let us purify our senses, and we shall behold Christ, radiant with the light ineffable of the Resurrection, and shall hear Him say in accents clear, rejoice as we sing the song of victory. For meet it is that the Heavens should rejoice, and that the earth should be glad, and the whole world, visible and invisible, should keep the feast, for Christ, the everlasting joy is Risen!
Holy Saturday - 05/01/2021
From Friday evening (April 30) until Saturday morning (May 1), the community of Christ the Saviour observed the all-night Grave Watch at the Tomb of our Lord. The faithful took 1-hour shifts being vigilant at the grave of our Lord. On Saturday morning we welcomed Ab. Mark for the Vesperal Liturgy (with 15 Old Testament Readings).
The great Moses mystically foreshadowed this day, when he said: God blessed the seventh day.” This is the blessed Sabbath. This is the day of rest, on which the only-begotten Son of God rested from all His works. By suffering death to fulfill the plan of salvation. He kept the Sabbath in the flesh, by returning again to what He was. He has granted us eternal life, For He alone is good, and the lover of man.
Burial Vespers and Lamentations - 04/30/2021
An impious and transgressing people – why do they imagine vain things? Why do they condemn to death the Life of all? O great wonder! The Creator of the world is betrayed into the hands of lawless men. He Who loves mankind, is lifted up upon the Wood, that He might free those bound in Hell, who cry: “O long-suffering Lord, glory to Thee!”
Passion Gospels - 04/29/2021
When the glorious disciples were enlightened at the washing of their feet before supper, then the impious Judas was darkened ailing with avarice, and to the lawless judges he betrayed Thee, the Righteous Judge. Behold, O lover of money, this man because of avarice hanged himself. Flee from the greed soul which dared such things against the Master! O Lord who art good towards all men, glory to Thee!