On Sunday afternoon, March 18th 2018, the Orthodox clergy and faithful of the Lehigh Valley gathered at St. Paul’s Antiochian Orthodox church in Emmaus PA., for Lenten Vespers on the Sunday of St. John Climacus.
Serving with Fr. Andrew Damick, the rector of St. Paul’s, were Fr. Matthew Joyner (St. Nicholas Russian Orthodox church, Bethlehem PA.), Fr. Anthony Perkins (St. Mary Ukrainian Orthodox church, Allentown PA.), Fr. Theodore Petrides (Holy Cross Greek Orthodox church, Strausburg, PA.), Fr. James Manson (ret.,St. Nicholas Russian Orthodox church, Bethlehem PA.) and Fr. Michael Kon (Bulgarian Orthodox Diocese).
Following Vespers, the faithful were addressed by Dr. Cyril Jenkins of Eastern University, and the director of the Orthodox Center for Thought and Culture. Dr. Jenkins spoke of the Prophet Elijah and his courage in confessing the true Faith to a society which had apostisized from the same. Great Lent is a time when we, like Elijah, need to climb Mt. Horeb and listen to the small, still voice of God, which strengthens us to return to witness to society.
After the conclusion of the address by Dr. Jenkins, all present proceeded to the social hall, where a wonderful fellowship meal was provided by the host community.