An Appeal From Metropolitan Moses
HOLY THREE HIERARCHS THEOLOGICAL INSTITUTE
HOLY EPARCHIAL SYNOD OF THE G.O.C. IN AMERICA
November 4/17, 2012 Saint Ioannicius the Great
Beloved Clergy and Faithful of the Church of the Genuine Orthodox Christians in North America,
As many of you know, last year our Holy Eparchial Synod blessed the start of Holy Three Hierarchs Theological Institute, in order to fill the desperate need for a Genuine Orthodox seminary in North America. We have indeed, started the seminary and made enormous strides, but to ensure that the seminary continues and becomes firmly established, we need your help.
What has the seminary accomplished so far? Since September, 2011, we have run online courses in Old and New Testament, church history, Homiletics, Ecclesiology, and Patristics. We have also begun an online book club featuring attractive, short books on spiritual life, in order to provide a forum for those who want to learn more about the Faith in a relaxed, non-academic setting. Both professors and students have enjoyed the courses enormously, increased their knowledge of the Faith, and demonstrated the enormous potential we have for creating a pool of educated candidates as future clergy, chanters, and catechists, without which our Church in this country will not continue, but with which She can live and thrive. But this is not all.
Realizing the urgency to start now to prepare young men to become clergymen, we took a huge further step this summer with our bishops’ blessing and actually began a residential seminary at Holy Unmercenaries Church in Alsip, Illinois. Two young men, zealous members of our Church, have given up their secular career and educational plans, and have totally dedicated themselves, 24/7, to preparing themselves for the service of the Church. In addition to taking their theology courses along with the online students, they assist as support staff for the online program, and take classes in person in Byzantine Chant, Biblical Greek, and the Typikon, and they will soon be taking Modern Greek as well.
Let’s face it: these are the kinds of young men we need to support, if we are going to have qualified married clergy in the future. Our Holy Ascension Monastery is now off to a miraculous new start, both in numbers of monks and in receiving tremendous support from the parishes. Let’s now show our support for the future of our married clergy.
We need your help. Holy Unmercenaries parish has come through for this effort by providing a house for the seminarians, but the seminary is for the whole Church, and we need the whole Church’s support. The seminarians, as I’ve said above, are dedicated full-time to the Church’s service, and therefore we need to take care of their utilities, groceries, medical needs, and all the day-today basics we expect for our own families. They are sacrificing themselves for the spiritual future of our children and grandchildren. We need to make the sacrifices necessary to free them for this vital work.
In talking this over with the seminarians and his parish leadership, Fr. John Somers, our Seminary Dean, realized that we need a special blessing for this enormously important cause. Therefore, he has vowed to serve the holy (Forty Liturgies), a Divine Liturgy every day during the upcoming Nativity Fast, a precious and time-honored custom within our Greek Orthodox tradition.
I ask your prayerful and material help for Fr. John and our valiant young men. Enclosed you will find a(Commemoration List) for the Living and the Reposed. Please send Fr. John the names of your beloved Orthodox living and departed, so that he can remember them for forty liturgies during this sacred effort. I realize that some of you may answer our appeal after Fr. John has begun, but even if the names arrive after the beginning of the Fast, he will continue to remember them until they have been commemorated for forty liturgies.
The donation you include with your names – however great or small it may be, according to your ability to help – will go to this priceless cause, the education of future clergy to serve your children and grandchildren. May Christ our God, the Eternal Wisdom Who was born as a tiny babe for our salvation, bless you for your love, and grant all of us the wisdom to provide for the future of our beloved Church in North America.
Hierarchical Overseer of the Holy Three Hierarchs Theological Institute
Please send your names and donation to
Fr. John Somers, Dean
Holy Three Hierarchs Theological Institute
11414 South Avon Avenue
Alsip, IL 60803
Checks should be made out to:
Hellenic Orthodox Traditionalist Church of America (HOTCA)
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