On Easter Sunday in 1999, over 1 million atheists and agnostics in America attended a church service. This year we may assume that many Americans continue to search for the Ancient Christian Church.
As the visible presence of the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church, each Orthodox Christian parish is called to witness to those within and those outside the community of believers. If we believe that in Orthodoxy we have the fullness of the Truth, then we have the great responsibility to share it with all people.
With church attendance increasing over the Lenten period with its usual peak during Holy Week, this is our greatest opportunity to reach out to our inactive Orthodox and to inquirers about the faith. Though Pascha is months away, it is time to prepare for the way in which we will reach out to these people on the fringes of our communities. Don't miss this opportunity.
Please consider the following:
- Prepare active parishioners and Parish Council members to reach out to visitors;
- Form a parish Outreach & Evangelism Committee;
- Offer and publicize Lenten programs for spiritual growth;
- Collect names and contact information of visitors and prepare for follow up efforts ( customized parish welcome card available from Dept of O & E );
- Plan a sermon for Holy Friday and Saturday midnight services which will begin a series of future messages on a compelling topic ( on Saturday- consider preaching before the Anastasis );
- Gear your sermons to inactive Orthodox and inquirers;
- Encourage parishioners to begin praying for the one or two people whom they will invite to Holy Week or Resurrection services; and
- Schedule a special event or guest speaker after Pascha which will draw people back to the church;
- Utilize resources listed below.
Lenten & Resurrection Banners
- "Join us on a Lenten Jouney to the Resurrection" Lenten banner & "Christ Is Risen!" Resurrection banner. Available in 3’x6’ or 4’x8’
Contact the Department of Outreach and Evangelism to order: email [email protected] or call (646) 519-6760
- A resource provided by St. Spyridon Church in Loveland, Co, the Pascha Passport is intended to be used as a means of enrichment and education on your journey through Lent to Pascha. Visit the St. Spyridon website to learn more »
- Our Lenten Journey Preparing for the Passion & Resurrection of Our Lord PDF | Word DOC
This resource is best distributed before or at the beginning of Great Lent, offering practical ideas and guidance in the areas of prayer, fasting, Bible reading and the sacraments of Holy Confession and Holy Communion. A printed brochure may be ordered from orthodoxmarketplace.com
- Welcome to Great and Holy Pascha Word DOC
This resource is an inspiring pamphlet intended for distribution at the Resurrection service on Saturday evening of Holy Week that encourages individuals to let the light of the Resurrection be lit in their hearts, to grow in their faith and to rediscover their calling as Orthodox Christians. A printed brochure may be ordered from orthodoxmarketplace.com
- Preparing for Confession by Fr. James Kordaris PDF | Word DOC
- The Great Fast by Metropolitan Isaiah PDF | Word DOC
- Repentance by Fr. Alexander Veronis PDF | Word DOC
- Holy Communion: The Gift of Eternal Life by Fr. Alkiviadis Calivas PDF | Word DOC
- All Things New in the Resurrection by Fr. Stanley S. Harakas PDF | Word DOC
- The Paschal Homily of Saint John Chrysostom (Trilingual: Greek-English-Spanish) PDF |
- Lenten Study Program - St. Catherine, Greenwood Village PDF |
- Resurrrection Service Handout Brochure PDF | Word DOC
- The Incarnation: A Revolution for Freedom by Dr. Aristotle Papanikolaou PDF | Word DOC
- My Soul Magnifies the Lord by Fr. Thomas Paris Article | PDF | Word DOC
- God for Us: Why the Incarnation is Rational by Dr. Aristotle Papanikolaou PDF | Word DOC
- Blessed is that Servant Whom He Shall find Waiting: An Exhortation to Vigilance by Fr. William Chiganos Article | PDF | Word DOC
- Focus Fasting by Fr. Athanasios Demos PDF | Word DOC
- The Fast of Great Lent by Fr. Athanasios Demos Word DOC
- Fasting to Love by Fr. Athanasios Demos Word DOC
- The Precious and Life-Giving Cross by Fr. Luke Veronis PDF | Word DOC
- Holy Friday Reflection - The Train Bridge PDF | Word DOC
- Proclaim His Resurrection: Seven Miles with Jesus by Fr Christopher Makiej PDF | Word DOC
- When You Fast by Rev. Dr. George Parsenios Word DOC
- The Creed by Rev Dr. George Parsenios Word DOC
These high resolution Holy Week icons are provided for your use in Lenten communications as you see fit. Credit must be given to iconographer Miltiadis Afentoulis and aftentoulis.com (website info appears near the edge of the icon).
- Palm Sunday (2.8 MB)
- Garden of Gethsemane (2 MB)
- Crucifixion (1.7 MB)
- Descent from the Cross (533 KB)
- Resurrection (3.7 MB)
Please contact Fr Jim Kordaris at [email protected] or call (646) 519-6760 for assistance.