The Clearinghouse of Liturgical Items is Now Online
Throughout the Archdiocese there are parishes in need of liturgical items such as censers, chalice sets, baptismal fonts, kouvouklia, altar boy robes, liturgy books, icons and more. There are also many established parishes that have more of these items than they need. In 2003, the Archdiocesan Department of Outreach & Evangelism established the Clearinghouse of Liturgical items in an effort to assist new and small parishes acquire those liturgical items that can be so costly, yet may be collecting dust in the back room of another more established parish. Since that time, the department has been working to match up parishes that have with parishes that need in order to provide these basic liturgical items for only the cost of delivery.
In the early days of the program, a set of processional fans went from Akron, Ohio to Prescott, Arizona; baptismal fonts went from Hunterdon County, New Jersey to Nashville, Tennessee and from Trenton, New Jersey to Traverse City, Michigan; tabernacles went from Cleveland Heights, Ohio to Prescott, Arizona and Traverse City, Michigan; altar server robes from Cumming, Georgia were shipped to York, Pennsylvania; and 38 choir robes from Washington, DC went to Duluth, Minnesota. Parishes are helping parishes.
Across the Archdiocese relationships are being formed as priests and parish leaders connect with one another to arrange for delivery of items. One recipient parish wrote, "We cannot tell you how wonderful it was to open it (the box) up and find the items so necessary to establish our new house of worship. What a blessing for us. We cannot tell you how encouraging this is for our Mission!"
Additional comments from recipient parish clergy have been heartwarming: “…what a great surprise your telephone call was last night. In fact, at the end of the day when I was actually a little too tired … your call and news gave me new life. Thank You.” “Day before yesterday, the huge box arrived….We were very impressed with what you sent. The processional Fans, and Cross, the Tabernacle, the Holy Water font are just wonderful!” “I can't tell you how grateful we are for all these things.”
Now, with the help of Internet Ministries of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese, the Clearinghouse of Liturgical Items is accessible online at clearinghouse.goarch.org.
The site lists items needed and items available from parishes throughout the Archdiocese. Visitors to the site may view items needed and items available and connect directly with other parishes. They may also add items needed and items available. Shipping expenses are the responsibility of the receiving parish.
The Clearinghouse is an effective ministry that costs practically nothing, but the support that it provides and the connections it creates between parishes are priceless.
Department of Stewardship, Outreach and Evangelism
Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America
Fr Jim Kordaris, Director
Office (direct) 646-519-6760