UKRAINIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH OF THE USA
CONSISTORY OFFICE OF PUBLIC RELATIONS
Living the FAITH on Pascha in Detroit Metropolitan Area
During one of his many sermons over the last few days at the Protection of the Birth-Giver of God Ukrainian Orthodox Cathedral in Southfield, MI, His Grace Daniel, the spiritual father of the Western Eparchy of the UOC of the USA, mentioned that our salvation extends beyond ourselves. That if we plan on reaching Heaven by focusing only on ourselves, by praying only for ourselves and what benefits us...then sadly....we've succeeded in doing just the opposite of what we intended. Heaven is gained through the Grace of God...and only through our selfish acts, our kindness to others, our sacrifice for another, as Christ sacrificed for us...only then can we wish to attain Heaven. His Grace instructed us to reach out to others, even if it is only to give them a smile or say "Hi". Don't wait to answer a greeting, but, be the greeter. It is okay if someone doesn't answer us, don't let it stop you...keep going...and smile to the next person you meet. Do a kindness, give assistance...go out of your way to bring joy and peace to another soul.
Bishop Daniel doesn't just "talk the talk"...he "walks the walk".
Today, on Pascha – May 1, 2016, His Grace, assisted by seminarians of St. Sophia Ukrainian Orthodox Theological Seminary (South Bound Brook, NJ) Ihor Protsak, Mykola Zomchak and Mykhaylo Bokalo took to the streets of the Detroit area to do just what he had instructed us to do...to bring a smile, a hug, a kind word to someone...to share the joy of the Resurrected Christ with the world...to take that light that lit up the sanctuary this morning, out into the dim world, and dispel the darkness.
Having personally delivered blessed baskets, filled with goodies, His Grace also delivered that smile, that kind word of encouragement, that hug...that simple touch on the shoulder that while a simple gesture can raise a person's spirit and give them renewed hope.
What a glorious way to spend Pascha...with old friends, new friends, and future friends. Glory to God for all things.
Christ is Risen! Indeed He is Risen!
Living the FAITH on Pascha in Detroit, MI - 05/02/16
Photos and text by Elizabeth Symonenko