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Updates on our Rector, Father John Reeves

14599749_10211009067807299_1116349840_oOctober 7, 2016
Martyr Sergius in Syria

After four weeks of intensive daily chemotherapy Fr. John rang the bell at the Shaner Cancer Pavilion indicating and celebrating that the most difficult part of his treatment is over. He gets the next two weeks off before beginning the in-home portion of his treatment.

While it’s still too early to know when Father will be up to returning to parish life, we give glory to God for bringing him this far! Thank you so much for praying for him and 14625564_10211009070167358_827649453_ohis family during this difficult time.

October 1, 2016
Protection of the Most-Holy Theotokos

Father John writes in his monthly article in the Trisagion newsletter:

Words do not suffice to express my gratitude for all the prayers and best wishes sent my way since my recent illness, not to mention the many gifts of food brought by the house… I appreciate everyone’s understanding why I am not up for visits during this first, intensive round of chemotherapy. It is a daily infusion of interferon as adjuvant therapy to stimulate my immune system to resist any future bouts of cancer. This phase lasts for a total of four weeks… Pray now for my continued healing.

September 8, 2016
Nativity of the Most-Holy Theotokos

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A day after being surrounded by the love and prayers of his beloved brother clergy and members of his parish family, Father John received test results from his oncologist and learned his prognosis.

All signs show the effectual operation of the Holy Spirit through your prayers—there is no evidence that the cancer has spread beyond his neck. This is the best possible news Father John could have received today. Since the cancer did not metastasize, Father John will begin a year of adjuvant (preventative) therapy using interferon to suppress the formation of any new tumors.

Father gives glory to God and thanks everyone who attended the unction service and who have been praying for him. He continues to covet your prayers for strength and healing as he recovers from the neck surgery and begins chemotherapy.

As communicated in prior announcements, the parish’s clergy and supply priests will maintain the liturgical schedule at both Holy Trinity and the Chapel of the Holy Spirit. Father will take this month to rest and monitor his response to treatment with the goal of serving and maintaining a limited schedule in October.

September 1, 2016
St. Simeon/Church New Year (Indiction)

Father John writes in his monthly article in the Trisagion newsletter:

[My] new ministry, as I see it, is to lead you, this parish, in the midst of my potentially life-threatening illness. While it is not one I that intended, or would have chosen, it is one that now I welcome. I welcome it because I believe that God has put this challenge before me, to be the ultimate confirmation of my calling and priesthood, to strengthen me and to strengthen you… This is where I find myself, called to confess existentially what I have professed intellectually and theologically over the years, and thereby to continue leading you to the Kingdom of God, as well.

August 29, 2016
Beheading of St. John the Forerunner

The entire parish is invited to attend the Mystery of Holy Unction for Fr. John on Wednesday, September 7 at 12:30 p.m. For those coming from work and other commitments, budget approximately 90 minutes for the service. This is an opportunity for many of us to pray alongside Father as we ask our Lord to heal Father’s body and soul.

Please keep the Archpriest John in your prayers this week as he undergoes tests to determine if the melanoma was fully removed by the surgeon or if it has spread beyond his neck. For those wishing to pray at home the Akathist to St. Nektarios of Pentapolis, Patron Saint of Cancer Sufferers, a link is provided here. The same akathist will be prayed corporately after each 5:30 p.m. Wednesday Vespers for those able to stay.

August 27, 2016

Diagnostic tests have been scheduled to take place Tuesday, August 30 and Wednesday, August 31 to determine if the melanoma was fully removed by the surgeon or if it has spread beyond his neck.

Fr. David Smith and supply clergy will celebrate the Sunday Divine Liturgy through the month of September to give Fr. John an opportunity to both heal from the surgery and begin whatever course of treatment is prescribed. Confessions will be heard at Holy Trinity on alternating Saturdays beginning today, August 27 and by appointment.

Please check or subscribe to the parish’s online calendar to see the latest service schedule (updated daily).

August 24, 2016

As you may of heard, Fr. John Reeves had neck surgery performed at Mount Nittany Medical Center last Friday. During the procedure a growth was discovered and removed. Diagnostic tests are still pending to determine the prognosis, but initial results have confirmed the presence of melanoma. Father and his family ask for your fervent prayers as he recovers from the surgery and awaits news of the disease’s extent and recommended course of treatment.

Holy Trinity’s TLC ministry is coordinating 30 days of meals to support Father’s family as they administer care. If you would like to participate, please click here or email tlc@holytrinity-oca.org for more information. Food may be delivered to the house (a drop off area has been established in the Reeves’ garage) but please do not ring the bell so Father can rest.

In the interim, pastoral emergencies will be handed by Fr. David Smith; Dn. Alexander Cadman will coordinate parish administration. Please send requests through the Parish Office (office@holytrinity-oca.org or 814-231-2855). Thank you.

August 21, 2016

Father John is recovering from minor neck surgery that was performed at Mount Nittany Medical Center on Friday, August 19. While he has agreed to receive meals, he has also requested that we respect his need for time to recover as he is quite fatigued and would prefer to limit visitations at this time. If you wish to participate, please select a date and indicate the type of meal you plan to bring, so we can coordinate our efforts.

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.

 

Sunday School to Enjoy Day at Amusement Park

DelgrossosAumusementPark-forweb-120The Sunday School will enjoy a day at Delgrosso’s Amusement Park in Tipton (about 25 mins from State College) for a Sunday School Fun Day on Thursday, June 30!

All Sunday School student admission tickets to the park will be paid for from our Gertrude Hawk Candy Sale conducted earlier this year. All students must be accompanied by a parent or guardian and are responsible for their children at all times.

The park is open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Our group will meet at the entrance at 12:30 p.m. and enter the park together.

There are variety of rides and a water park. For more info you may visit the DelGrosso website or contact Deacon Mark Oleynik, Director of Christian Education.

VBS 2016 Daily News: Friday

VBS Friday 1VBS Kids Now Fully Staffed
“I Just Wanna be a Sheep” Now Latest Craze

STATE COLLEGE, PA — It was pizza day and as the VBS kids met for the last time this year, they gathered with our Archbishop Melchisedek to hear his words on being the shepherd of  a flock.  It was stated that his flock is different from flocks of sheep that the kids had the chance watch yesterday (see article below).

As part of their discussion, the students learned that just as a shepherd carries a staff to direct his flock for protection of his herd in case of danger a bishop carries a staff as a symbol of being our shepherd.  Additionally, the students found that the top of a bishop’s staff (crozier) is made to resemble two serpents’ heads, recalling the Saviors’ words: “Be ye wise as serpents”. As a serpent each year forces its way through thorny plants to shed its old skin, so also must the bishop lead others and follow himself along the thorny path which leads of the renewal of our souls.  (Ed. Note: Students made staffs this to help them remember Psalm 23.)

VBS Friday 2As the week began with the students uttering the first words of Psalm 23, “The Lord is my Shepherd” today the VBS concluded with the affirmation, “I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.” The sheep are content and “at home” with the shepherd—and want to stay with Him forever.

Sheep Farm Tour Shows VBS Kids Life as a Sheep

On Thursday, the Holy Trinity VBS took it first ever field trip to a sheep farm in Sunbury, PA.  After a 1.5 hour bus trip, the students were greeted by an array of farm animals but mostly by a whole lot of sheep.

VBS Friday 3During the tour the students were able to pet the sheep, walk through the pastures, and learn about a sheep’s necessities (water & salt) and some of the dangers (copper, falling over). It was particularly fun to see the shepherd Caroline and her dog gather the sheep and run them back and forth – and how well the  sheep followed the shepherds commands.

At the end of the tour each student was given a piece of wool from one of the sheep as a keepsake.  All the “sheep” returned home safely and happily.

FPO — For Parents Only

VBS Friday 4It was once again a great joy and pleasure to be with your children this week.  It was a bit hectic but it was fun and they are going to be amazing sheep.  As much as possible include Psalm 23 in your daily prayers and with your children.  Knowing the meaning behind the words will give them great comfort and peace.  Thanks!

Learn More

For more recaps, pictures, and information, visit the 2016 Vacation Bible School homepage.

VBS 2016 Daily News: Thursday

Students Take a Trip to a Sheep Farm
VBS Kids See First-hand What Sheep Are Like!

STATE COLLEGE, PA — Today there was no issue of the VBS Daily News because our reporters were in the field—literally. Here are some pictures from the remote location.

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FPO — For Parents Only

  • On Friday, there will be Vespers at 5:00 p.m. Please try to bring your children early so that we can pray together. Dinner and VBS will follow immediately. Additionally, our bishop will be visiting and will share some “shepherding” stories with the kids.

Learn More

For more recaps, pictures, and information, visit the 2016 Vacation Bible School homepage.