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Runners to Support Local Charities

Whether you are a running enthusiast aiming for your best time or simply willing to walk for a great cause, consider joining your fellow parishioners in supporting local charities at one of these upcoming 5K events:

THON 2013 5K

The 12th Annual THON 5K will take place Saturday, October 13 at the corner of University Drive and Curtin Road at 11:30 a.m. (the Kid’s Race starts at 11). The Fun Run/Walk costs just $15 and competitive chip timing costs $18. Participants and friends can credit our Penn State Orthodox Christian Fellowship when they visit to register or donate. Help OCF reach its goal to dance for 46 hours! 

Run for Shelter 5K

Holy Trinity’s partner ministry, Housing Transitions invites parishioners to Run for Shelter!  This 5K run/walk will take place on Saturday, November 10 at 9 a.m., and begin and end at Centre House.  All proceeds will benefit the homeless shelter. Forms and/or additional information is available in the Parish Hall or by contacting Diana Van Duin.

OCF to Participate in Fall Retreat

Members of the Penn State Orthodox Christian Fellowship will enjoy a weekend of fellowship, learning, and prayer at St. Vladimir’s Seminary on October 5-7. There will be presentations, lectures, and discussion based on Orthodox Education Day’s theme of “Inklings of Glory: Godward Journeys with Lewis and Tolkien.” Participants will also enjoy an excursion to New York City during the three-day gathering.

Penn State OCF will sponsor the cost of transportation, registration, and meals during the event; participants will simply need to bring spending money for the excursion. To register, email today.

OCF and Young Adult Fellowship to Attend Retreat

Penn State Orthodox Christian Fellowship members will join Holy Trinity’s Young Adult Fellowship in traveling to Holy Apostles Orthodox Church in Mechanicsburg for the Seventh Annual Young Adult Retreat on Saturday, March 17. Our very own Fr. John Reeves will speak on the topic “Lord, Increase Our Faith.”

The day begins with a Memorial Service and will include a free Lenten luncheon (bring money for a fellowship dinner afterward), and two sessions with Fr. John. Our van will depart from the Holy Trinity parking lot at 8 a.m.

For more information or to register, please contact or

Tentative Schedule

11:00 – Memorial Saturday Service
11:30 – Registration
12:00 – Lunch
1:00 – Session 1
2:00 – Break
2:15 – Session 2
3:15 – Q&A and Closing
4:00 – Dinner and Fellowship
6:00 – Vespers at Holy Apostles


“Earlybird” Rate for College Conference Still Available

It’s not too late to take advantage of the early bird pricing for Orthodox Christian Fellowship’s 2011 College Conference!  These rates will be available through Tuesday, December, 20, 2011 at

The conferences will be held during Christmas break in three locations  Saint Nicholas Ranch, Dunlap, CA; Antiochian Village, Bolivar, PA; and the Diaconia Center, Salem, SC.  Each will focus on OCF’s theme for the year  “Raise Me Above This World’s Confusion.”

Some scholarships are still available. For more information, call the North American Office at 1-800-919-1623. To register, visit

College Conference East

Antiochian Village – Bolivar, Pa.
December 28-31, 2011
Earlybird rate until Dec. 20: $240 – Regular: $265

Keynote speaker – His Grace, Bishop Michael [Dahulich] of New York and the Diocese of New York & New Jersey in the Orthodox Church in America with workshop speakers – Fr. Antony Bahou, Fr. Mefodii, Fr. Anthony Messeh, Sister Ignatia, Katrina Bitar, Kenneth Kidd and Niko Tzetzis. 

Fellowship Raises More Than $700 for THON

At a benefit dinner following the Divine Liturgy yesterday, the Penn State Orthodox Christian Fellowship raised more than $700 to combat pediatric cancer, furthering their goal of qualifying for dancers at the Penn State IFC/Panhellenic Dance Marathon on February 17-19, 2012. Thank you for your generosity.

OCF Celebrates Semester with Dinner “On the Town”

The Penn State Orthodox Christian Fellowship, which meets Thursdays at 6 p.m. for discussion at 212 Pasquerilla Spiritual Center, celebrated the end of the Fall 2011 semester with a dinner out “on the town” at Rey Azteca Mexican Restaurant in State College. The group is open to all Penn State students, especially those who want to learn more about the ancient Christian Faith.

To learn how you can get involved, visit the group’s Facebook page or email

Holy Trinity to Sponsor Trip to 2012 March for Life

Several ministries at Holy Trinity—including the Church School and the Penn State Orthodox Christian Fellowship—are making arrangements for a Monday, January 23, 2012, pilgrimage to our nation’s capital. We will stand in support of the millions of innocent unborn children lost to abortion each year. Next year’s March For Life marks the 25th anniversary of the event.

More details will be forthcoming in the coming weeks, but please mark your calenders now and begin making the necessary arrangements for as many members of your family to attend.

My Mission Trip to Ukraine

Mission Trip to Ukraineby Christopher McNulty

On August 4 through August 21 I was blessed with the opportunity to go on the 2011 Ukrainian Orthodox Church (UOC) of the USA Mission Trip to Ukraine. We traveled to two orphanages outside of Kiev: one in Puhachiv which houses around 90 girls, most with mental disabilities, and the other in Znamyanka which houses over 100 orphans, most with either physical or mental disabilities.

The mission trip is held twice a year, once in the summer and once over the winter holidays, and the missionaries who go help by engaging in projects to improve the facilities, aiding the staff with physical and massage therapy for the children, and, most importantly, spending time playing with and caring for the children.

This year we were able to accomplish several things in the two orphanages we visited. Besides the important time we were able to spend playing with and working with the children, we were able to be a part of the opening of a Montessori Center in Puhachiv, to take girls from Puhachiv outside of the orphanage to a local park, to paint a mural outside of the children’s rooms in Znamyanka, and to take several physically disabled kids from the orphanage in Znamyanka into the town.

My experience in Ukraine was unforgettable: from the moment we arrived at an orphanage to the moment we left, each and every child showed unconditional love for everyone who visited. It was unbelievable that the simple act of holding hands, sitting next to, or even just smiling at a child brought so much excitement and happiness to them.

2011 Mission Trip to Ukraine 748The children of these orphanages don’t usually get the opportunity to get outside of the complexes and they don’t get to experience life outside of the orphanage. The work done on these mission trips is invaluable to these children, and the help of Children of Chornobyl Relief and Development Fund (CCRDF) and UOC of USA has been integral to the improvement of these orphanages from the condition they were in.

The conditions of most of the orphanages in Ukraine were, and some continue to be, poor. Many of the orphanages built under Soviet reign were not built to last and are falling apart, and many of the orphanages obtain minimal amounts of funding from the government. Some orphanages are flooded with large numbers of mentally or physically handicapped orphans that were left there either because their parents couldn’t afford to take care of them or because it was recommended by a physician. Because many of the orphanages are understaffed, the living conditions in these places were horrendous: many of the children were given minimal amounts of care, there was little to no sanitary measures taken, and many children died.

However, with the aid of the CCRDF and the UOC of USA, living conditions have improved greatly. In Znamyanka alone, the death rate has declined from 20 children in 2000, to none this year. Money goes toward improving facilities and funding necessities like diapers and baby wipes. It is also is used for emergency situations: for instance, funds paid to heat an orphanage during a particularly harsh win-ter, which most likely saved many children’s lives.

With the help of those who support this cause, the living conditions in these orphanages will continue to improve, and the lives of the children who live there will greatly improve as well. Thanks to everyone at Holy Trinity who helped make my trip to Ukraine possible!

Penn State Students Planning THON Fundraising Trip

Penn State Students: Our first THON canning (fundraising) weekend is coming up in two weeks (Sept. 30th-Oct. 2). Please post on our Facebook page if you are interested in making the trip with the Orthodox Christian Fellowship to New Jersey and when you need to return (Saturday night or Sunday afternoon after church).

Orthodox Christian Fellowship Announces Fall Events

The rainy weather couldn't keep OCF students from enjoying their Labor Day BBQ in September 2011.

The Penn State Orthodox Christian Fellowship announced last month their event schedule for Fall 2011. In addition to their weekly dinner meeting on Thursdays at 6 p.m. in 212 Pasquerilla, the schedule includes a Labor Day BBQ dinner at Spring Creek Park, a hayride on October 23, and three “Stump-the-Priest Nights” featuring Fr. John. The group also committed to participate in THON next year. Visit for more information.

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