UKRAINIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH OF THE USA
CONSISTORY OFFICE OF PUBLIC RELATIONS
Archpastoral Visit to Nativity of the Mother of God Ukrainian Orthodox Parish in South Plainfield, NJ
On Sunday, August 11, 2013 His Grace Bishop Daniel, with the blessing of His Eminence Metropolitan Antony, made an archpastoral visit to Nativity of the Mother of God Ukrainian Orthodox parish in South Plainfield, NJ.
The entire summer session ESL class of seminarians of St. Sophia Ukrainian Orthodox Theological Seminary (South Bound Brook, NJ) escorted Bishop Daniel upon his visit to the parish. It was especially moving for those in attendance to witness the clergy around the altar, as all two priests and a deacon were ordained by His Grace earlier this year.
Rev. Fr. Vasyl Pasakas, pastor of the parish family community welcomed the hierarch, offering words of sincere gratitude for an unexpected visit, yet full of love towards to those in attendance. Fr. Vasyl spoke of the importance of Archpastoral visitations as they bring parishes, clergy and faithful closer to each other. The parishioners of this particular parish family remember Bishop Daniel as deacon yet; who would accompany Archbishop Antony on his Archpastoral visitations.
Deacon Philip Harendza, a recent graduate of St. Sophia Seminary, who is presently attached to St. John the Baptist Ukrainian Orthodox parish in Johnson City, NY concelebrated the Divine Liturgy, reminiscing at the end of the service about the days of Seminary training where Bishop Daniel, Fr. Vasyl Pasakas, Fr. Vasyl Dmytryshyn and Deacon Philip often concelebrated liturgical services.
In his sermon, the hierarch reflected on the Gospel narrative of Seventh Sunday after Pentecost, stating: “…We believe the FACTS about CHRIST! We believe that He did miracles! But do we have faith that He can do miracles in OUR lives? Do we have faith that Christ can do miracles in the lives of the people we love?.. You see, these miracles weren’t written down so that we’ll give Jesus a round of applause. They were written so that we will see that Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is worthy of our worship and worthy of our obedience. He doesn’t want you to be His fan. He calls upon you to be His follower…”
The visit concluded with a coffee hour with the bishop, during which parishioners spend some time with His Grace, before he departed to begin a new week of joyful work in the Vineyard of Christ – Holy Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the USA.