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About the Parish’s Listing on Google

On December 20, 2016, Holy Trinity was informed by Google that the parish’s website, holytrinity-oca.org, was hacked by a third party. Holy Trinity’s web host confirmed on December 21 that a hacker exploited a vulnerable plugin in order to add a redirect code within the server’s main configuration file. 

This action did not result in any of the parish’s webpages being modified (so visitors accessing the website were not adversely affected), but it did cause the listing on Google’s search engine to be inundated with false listings and redirects to a marketing company claiming to be associated with the Japanese Olympic Committee. 

The vulnerability was completely remedied on December 21 and additional security measures were taken to ensure malicious injections would not happen in the future. We are currently working with Google to correct our listing and apologize for any inconvenience. The process may take up to two weeks.

The website remains safe to access and navigate despite the warning on the Google listing. For more information, please contact the webmaster.

Update—January 3, 2017: Holy Trinity’s Google listing has been restored as of January 1, 2017. The search listing does erronously indicate that the site is not mobile friendly and Holy Trinity has asked that that label be reconsidered. That request may take a few weeks to process as well.

Traditional Holy Supper to be Served Christmas Eve

Holy Trinity Parishioners enjoy a final Lenten meal together before the Feast of Christmas.

On Christmas Eve beginning at 4:30 p.m., the parish will sponsor a traditional Holy Supper and everyone is invited.

(The custom of the “holy supper” comes from central Europe and parts of Russia and provided the family a time to gather and share the last meal of the Fast prior to attending the evening liturgical services.)

There are traditionally twelve Lenten foods served (representing the twelve Apostles) such as barley, honey, stewed prunes, pierogi, sauerkraut, potatoes, garlic, Lenten bread, and mushroom soup.

Please consider preserving (or starting) this family tradition by attending and sharing with your parish family a favorite Lenten food.

Sign up in the Parish Hall or online so that we may have an accurate count. Also, please email Mka. Kelly Oleynik if you have any questions and/or would like to assist with this event.

Ministry Groups to Enjoy Fellowship this Weekend

Several of Holy Trinity’s ministry groups will spend this Friday and Saturday engaging in several activities together in preparation for the Feast of the Nativity. On Friday night, teens and preteens in the Orthodox Youth Association will wrap gifts as a service project. Then on Saturday, men will have breakfast; women will decorate the church, exchange cookies, and have lunch; and the Choir and the Sunday School will conduct rehearsals in the afternoon. Scroll down for the complete schedule and for more information.

Christmas: Will it Be a Joy or a Letdown?

by Dn. Mark Oleynik

IMG_0378Many years ago, I had a conversation with a friend the day after Christmas and he said something which surprised me. He sadly said, “There is nothing more done than Christmas.” This was surprising because he was the most joyful and outgoing person you would ever want to meet—and a real ambassador of Christ. I learned much later that it was at that precise time he was going through a personal tragedy and that year Christmas was quite difficult for him. Fortunately, in time his pain eased and he was back to his old self. But I never forgot his words and what they meant to him that day.

In preparing for the Nativity of our Lord, most parents try to teach their children to be joyful givers. But we all know a child’s focus on Christmas is on “getting the gifts” and it’s probably likewise true for many adults. Most assuredly, parents do their best to provide at least some of items from their child’s wish list not to mention gifts for their spouse, parents, and friends. But when the presents are all unwrapped, the Christmas meal is over, and the house is probably turned upside down from the children and all the guests—do you feel kind of let-down? Do you feel Christmas is done?

In just the few short weeks preceding Christmas emotions are built up to a fever pitch: the shopping and baking, the plans to be made, and the endless commercials for the latest-and-greatest, all mixed in between the innumerable Christmas movies. To top it off, research shows that for many Christmas is one of the saddest times of the year. Not only sad memories of those who are no longer with them—but often the tragedies witnessed both in their families and in the world at large provide stark contrast to joy of the season. So, given the combination of too much emotion, too much excitement, too much to eat and to drink, and just the general chaos of the season…is it any wonder you might feel a slight letdown?

Certainly you and your family will receive wished-for presents, but will you receive the real gift at Christmas—the gift of Christ Himself? His peace, and joy, and presence in whom we find the only lasting source of Life. The true gift giver on this  and every day is Christ, but you must include Him on your Christmas list—invite Him to be the most important part of your life and your family’s life. Amidst all of the worship and singing of our grace and our customs, plan to take personal and family time and ask the Savior, “Lord, come and dwell with my family and me this day. Be by our side so that we may know and walk with you throughout all our days.”

If you have eyes to see it, the world is flooded with His joy. If you have the heart to receive it, your life will be touched by His. And if you have faith to live it, He will be with you all your days, and all your hours. For behold, truly we all have been given good news of great joy – for unto us, if we will receive Him, is born into our hearts Christ the Savior. And if we will receive this gift for Christmas, all our days will be blessed.

So what do you really want to receive this Christmas? What will you allow God to give you this Christmas? Will it really be the gift of Himself—or in all the busyness of the season will you not take the time and really ask Him.

It’s up to you. At the end of it all, Christmas can just be “done” … or it can be done rightly.

Angels Appearing this Month
Plan to stay after the liturgy on Sunday, December 18 for the annual retelling of the story of Christ’s birth by our Church School. Our students will once again present a living icon based on the Nativity scriptures, complete with angels, shepherds, wise men, and assorted animals. You will not want to miss it!

 

Women’s Night Out Postponed

Tomorrow’s (Thursday, October 6) Women’s Night Out has been postponed to a later date to avoid conflicts with other events going on in and around State College that evening. We apologize for the inconvenience.

The next scheduled event for the Women’s Ministry is the annual “Women’s Coffee and Tea.” It will take place on Saturday, October 29 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. at the home of Matushka Kelly Oleynik (125 Wildernest Ln., in Port Matilda). Ladies of all ages are invited. To RSVP or for more information, please email women@holytrinity-oca.org.

For a full calendar of services and events, visit holytrinity-oca.org/calendar.

Women’s Night Out is this Thursday!

On Thursday, October 6 from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m., the women of the church will be heading to The Greek, 102 E. Clinton Ave., for their annual “Women’s Night Out.” The Women’s Ministry will need to give the restaurant a head count on Wednesday evening so RSVPs are required. To RSVP, call Susan Pettengill at 231-1252 or email women@holytrinity-oca.org no later than Wednesday afternoon, October 5. Ladies, we will see you at The Greek!

Life Chain to Commemorate Lives of Unborn Children

Life Chain Sunday will be held Sunday, October 2, 2016, in State College, from 2:00 to 3:00 p.m. Attendees are asked to gather at 1:45 p.m. at 900 West College Ave. to receive the proper signs and instructions on where to stand on West College Avenue.

This is the only public event that Citizens Concerned for Human Life (CCHL) of Centre County does every year to commemorate the lives of the millions of unborn that have been lost to abortion. Holy Trinity has partnered with CCHL for several years now in participating in this silent witness in the community.

For more information, please contact Susan Rogacs of CCHL. Please pray that no other abortion centers open in the Centre Region.

Women’s Book Study Begins This Week

The Women’s Ministry is conducting a book study beginning this Tuesday and continuing on alternating Tuesdays through November 22. This year the group will read Royal Monastic Princess Ilenea: The Story of Mother Alexandra.

The study will be held in the Conference Room at Trinity House from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. The first class will examine the book’s first section (through page 33). Books can be picked up today or tomorrow at Trinity House for $12.

For more information, contact women@holytrinity-oca.org.

Sunday School Begins this Week

Sunday School will commence this Sunday, September 11 for children in Kindergarten through grade 12. Classrooms are located in multiple locations on the church’s campus, but all classes begin with prayer in the Parish Hall at 9 a.m.

Volunteers are needed to assist teachers in one of the five classes (grades K-1, 2-3, 4-5, 6-8, and 9-12); those interested should plan to attend the first teacher meeting this Wednesday before Vespers and Litiya for the Feast of the Nativity of the Theotokos. 

To register your child(ren) or for more information, please contact Dn. Mark Oleynik, Director of Christian Education.

Electronic Giving Now Available

The work of Holy Trinity and the Chapel is entirely supported by sacrificial gifts from members of its parish family. Thank you.

Now, at no cost to you—and at a minimal cost to the parish (on average, less than the price of offering envelopes)—your donations can be withdrawn directly from your checking account, savings account, or debit card. This convenient payment portal is made possible through our partnership with Fulton Bank and Jack Henry and Associates.

With just a few clicks, you can set up a one-time or recurring payment, ideal for busy families and travelers.

Donate Now

Questions, comments, or suggestions? Let us know your feedback at online.giving@holytrinity-oca.org.