All Saints Orthodox Mission Church will be celebrated this special Holy Day with a service on WEDNESDAY, January 6, 2016 at our temporary home, St. Victor Church, followed by a small reception and photographs. All who attended had a great time. We all shared in prayer, wonderful vegetable soup and presents for the kids. Enjoy the photos below
On Tuesday, January 19, 2016, we celebrated Holy Theophany with the Blessing of the Water.
And, as in the case of our mission parish, we went to our sister parish (and home of our Spiritual Advisor, Fr. Gregory Joyce) St. Vladimir Orthodox Church in Dexter, Michigan.
Now is the time that we are making appointments for having our homes blessed. Contact us to make an appointment.
And if you would like some water to take home, please bring a bottle and come to church, or we have some available if you need.
On Sunday, February 14, 2016, a group of our teens joined up with a group of teens from St. Vladimir to the Saline Area Social Services facility to sort and organize donated food and items for the poor. There was so much to do, however we were lucky to have so many great teens help get it all done. We have plans to go back soon.
On Sunday, March 13, 2016, we began our journey to Holy Pascha by preparing ourselves with a very pious and humble service called Forgiveness Vespers. This is considered by many faithful as the actual start of Great Lent spiritually when we are asking everyone in our world to forgive us for anything that we have done to offend; and likewise to forgive all those who have offended us. Starting this wonderful experience of Praying and Fasting over the next 40 days with a clean slate to all people makes us better for our family and friends.
Here is a little lesson about this - its history and application; why it is really a tough, but rewarding experience:
Forgiveness Sunday, also called Cheesefare Sunday, is the final day of pre-Lent.
It is the Sunday after Meatfare Sunday and the Sunday before the Sunday of Orthodoxy.
Significance of the day
On this last Sunday before Great Lent, the last day that traditionally Orthodox Christians eat dairy products until Easter, the Church remembers the expulsion of Adam and Eve from Paradise. God commanded them to fast from the fruit of a tree (Gen. 2:16), but they did not obey. In this way Adam and Eve and their descendants became heirs of death and corruption.
On Forgiveness Sunday many attend Forgiveness Vespers on the eve of Great Lent. They hear on the Lord's teaching about fasting and forgiveness and enter the season of the fast forgiving one another so that God will forgive them. If you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will forgive you; but if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your heavenly Father forgive you your trespasses (Matthew 6:14).
The Gospel reading of the day also gives advice on fasting. Moreover, when you fast, do not be like the hypocrites, with a sad countenance. For they disfigure their faces that they may appear to men to be fasting. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward. But you, when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face, so that you do not appear to men to be fasting, but to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly. (Matthew 6:16-18).
The Rite of Forgiveness
After the dismissal at Vespers, the priest stands beside the analogion, or before the ambon, and the faithful come up one by one and venerate the icon, after which each makes a prostration before the priest, saying, "Forgive me, a sinner." The priest also makes a prostration before each, saying, "God forgives. Forgive me." The person responds, "God forgives," and receives a blessing from the priest. Meanwhile the choir sings quietly the irmoi of the Paschal Canon, or else the Paschal Stichera. After receiving the priest's blessing, the faithful also ask forgiveness of each other.
After celebrating our own Orthodoxy during the second week of Great Lent, we bring our attention to the value of our Cross by Exhibiting, Bowing (prostrations), and Venerating it on this special occasioin. It is so important to note that we can become so complacent with our Faith and depend on everything it stands for, while still not putting the effort needed to be good Orthodox Christians. The truth is that we need to work hard and apply ourselves to being the best person we can be, and to do the right thing, because it is the right thing to do.
The Sunday of the Cross helps us remember this. This is the time that we realize that it is still ther for us, and to continue being a hard working, pious person - to continue to try to live as He does, and to be the Best We Can Be.
With the blessing of Bishop Peter, the Wonderworking Kursk Root Icon of the Mother of God came to visit our All Saints Mission Parish on the Holy Day of the Annunciation - Thursday, April 7, 2016, where we were able to share it with several of our Orthodox neighbors and guests by celebrating with an Akathyst, followed by a small reception.
The Kursk Root Icon (also Our Lady of Kursk) (Russian: Богоматерь Курская Коренная, Bogomater Kurskaya
Korennaya, literally Theotokos of Kursk, Found Among the Roots) is an icon of Theotokos of the Sign, apparently painted in the thirteenth century and discovered in a forest near Kursk ca.1300.
The icon was preserved in the Black Hermitage of the Roots (Chornaya Korennaya Pustyn), an abbey founded on the spot of its discovery. It was regularly brought from the abbey to Kurskin a great procession involving thousands of peasants and pilgrims. This ceremony is depicted in the famous painting by Ilya Repin; see Religious Procession in Kursk Province.
The icon actually incorporates as many as twelve figures on it: Theotokos, Infant Christ, God the Father above them (with the Holy Spirit as a dove) and nine Old Testament prophets. The image of Theotokos belongs to the Panagia type. It was regarded as a palladion of the Russian Imperial Army. After the Russian Revolution, the icon was brought by the White Army outside of Russia, where it is now held in New-York by the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia.
The monastery near Kursk where the icon was held was formerly very rich and hosted one of the largest fairs in Imperial Russia. During the Soviet period the monastery cathedral (designed by Konstantin Thon) was demolished; restoration works are planned.
To honor our wonderful friends at St. Mary - Annunciation Catholic Church in Rockwood (caretakers of St. Victor), we commissioned the Internationally Recognized Iconographer, Sergei Mitrofanov to write a special Icon that we had blessed (see photos) to present to them for all of their support and generosity while we are trying to grow. Special Thank you to Fr. James Rafferty and Beth Herzog for everything they have done for us.
Information about the Icon English:
Information about the Icon Russian:
YouTube Procession of Kursk Icon in Russian
It was a beautiful Spring day in Rives Junction on April 16, 2016, as several of our members took the trek to western Michigan to visit, pray and tour the wonderful and inspirational property that is our Dormition Orthodox Monastery. Founded more than 20 years ago, Mother Gabriella has focused and executed a vision with scenic property, beautiful buildings, a Orthodox Cemetary (where Sub-Deacon Peter Boyar is resting), and a beautiful Chapel is still being decorated right in the middle of the whole thing.
Although we have visited several times, this was a first time for a few, and we are excited to return soon.
As we have kept this tradition for several years now, in preparation of Holy Pascha, we spend one weekend each year learning the art of Pysanky, in the Russian tradition of egg decorating, which we share with our parishioners and guests. The class is being taught by Sonia Boyar, who has been writing on these raw eggs for over 60 years.
The entire Palm Sunday Weekend is really busy here at All Saints Mission. After a small prayer service for Lazarus Saturday, many of us stayed and set up all of our Palm Leaves and Pussy Willows, as we prepare to take them to St. Vladimir - Ann Arbor to have them blessed and bring them back for our final Reader's Service, featuring a very nice Palm Sunday Procession around the inside of our building, which we adorned with the the branches and leaves, that we were able to procure from our own Flower Shop.
As we completed our prayers, we took a special moment to pray for our wonderful neighbors and friends from St. Mary - Annunciation Catholic Church, who so graciously accepted and helped us so much grow in our time there. A special Thank you to Father James Rafferty and Beth Herzog, who were both a true Godsend to us.
We want to pay special attention and extend our deepest appreciation to the very nice folks at St. Mary Rockwood, who under Fr. James Rafferty and their Church Administration Secretary, Mrs. Beth Herzog, found generosity in their hearts to allow us to claim the old St. Victor Church (in Gibraltar) for a considerably long time. We were able to grow and continue to identify ourselves while enjoying the comfort and security of a physical home.
Here are a few photos of how we started to adorn the Sanctuary with some Orthodox touches.
Thank you so much!
On Sunday, May 6, 2016, All Saints Orthodox Church promoted our first major Flower Shop Project. We received permission and set up a satellite remote Flower Stand at the Professional Morturary Services facility on Livernois (south of Michigan Avenue) in Southwest Detroit.
A number of reasons came to order for picking that location, including recognizing the importance of mothers in our culture, as well as the special Mother's Day celebrations and recognition in the Hispanic Culture, too. It was a really nice location and the weather cooperated giving our ministry a very successful day.
Thank you to Gus, Tiffany and Sasha, who gave up their personal time to help create many memories for all of the people and their families who stopped by and supported us.
On a kind of weather-tricky September 17-18, 2016 autumn weekend, our sister parish, St. Vladimir Orthodox Church held their 4th Annual Russian Festival outside on their grounds in Dexter, Michigan, and for the 4th time, they allowed our Mission Parish to host the Bar Area as our way to help. Even when the weather wasn't the best, people were still all over eating, drinking, dancing and playing. Everyone we talked to had a great time.
The entertainment was just awesome with performances from the Golden Gates, Konovets, and the wonderful St. Vladimir Choir and so many Russian dance and performance groups (international and local). There were so many varieties of authentic foods (meals and sweets), and drink (including Vodkas, Wines and Beer from Eastern Europe) that everyone felt at home. There was a lot of stuff there to buy from kiosks and vendors, and souvineers were plentiful. Fr. Gregory led church tours and there was a lot to do for kids and adults to play (including a petting zoo, constant Chess games and traditional games all around.
Please visit https://stvladimirchurch.smugmug.com/2016/Russian-Festival/ to see all of the photos and fun from that weekend. We just put some highlights here for you to enjoy.
After a wonderful and inspiring performance at the 4th Annual Russian Festival in Ann Arbor, Michigan, the Konovets Quartet agreed to sing for the Dearborn/Downriver Community on Thursday, September 22, 2016 at the River Rouge Municipal Campus. They delighted and entertained several local community leaders, as well as local people, who followed them by reputation. They sang some Church Hymns followed by nice Cultural Folk Songs from the Russian and Ukrainian regions.
Everyone enjoyed a small Afterglo with the Quartet signing autographs on their CDs that were available. We are hoping that they will come back to perform again soon.
You may also see the wonderful exposure we received from different media sources
(Thank you So Much)
Our Chicago and Mid-American Diocese
(and the wonderful work by Luba).
Click on the link below to go directly to their site:
The News Herald (Downriver's Best News Source)
(and our wonderful friend, Shannon)
Click this link to go directly to our article on their site: