Faith Matters Newsletter - January 2022
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With 2021 officially behind us, now is a time to reflect and look forward to the new year. This occasion allows us to reinvest in our own personal missions and reminds us that each of us offers a unique contribution.
2021 was a year full of challenges. With the COVID-19 pandemic still plaguing society, people’s lives are left unsettled. However, despite the arduous pandemic, the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America and the Department had a formidable year. Of course, with the visit of His All-Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew came events and meetings that solidified our inter-Orthodox, ecumenical and interfaith relationships. Under the guidance of His All-Holiness as well as His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros, the Department developed various programs including the Greening the Parish Webinar, How-to video series, and Resource page as well as the Racial Reconciliation Resource page and interview series. The Department was also involved in the Ecumenical Prayer Service Lamenting the Reconversion of Hagia Sophia into a Mosque at the Saint Sophia Greek Orthodox Church in Washington, D.C. and the historic participation of Orthodox Bishops in the USCCB Fall General Assembly.
The end of the year is a time of gratitude and deliberation, a time that enables us to learn lessons from the past year and apply those discoveries to the path forward to next year. Over 2021, many turned to different outlets for refuge, with two main themes prevailing: faith and hope. Hope is still very much alive in our city, our community, and in our country.
So, as we move through the Christmas season, let us remember to keep both faith and hope alive. We have a new year upon us, where, with faith in God and in ourselves, we can tackle the challenges that lay ahead.
Protopresbyter Nicolas Kazarian, Ph.D.
Director, Department of Inter-Orthodox, Ecumenical & Interfaith Relations