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Message from Father

Fr Niko

Beloved brothers and sisters in the Lord,

Much has been made over the past year about the financial situation that our Archdiocese finds itself in.  Over the past few months, in particular, our parishes around the country have been informed of certain bad practices which creeped into the operations of the Church on a national level, causing a difficult problem to perpetuate.  One characteristic of all publications we have been presented is that this admittedly large problem began with small, seemingly insignificant problems which no one thought would have an effect on the larger whole.  Over several years however, habits began forming which were not professional, and their effects were felt in areas which many thought were unrelated.  What began as “cutting corners” here and there turned into a major financial crisis.

Are there times in our lives in which we think that we do something innocent and small, only to have it turn into something much bigger, something that we thought was unrelated?  Have we ever eaten a few more calories than we should, or not followed our physician’s advice?  Have we ever disregarded our New Year’s resolution a week into the New Year?  Have we ever “cut corners” when it came to matters of faith, not thinking that it would affect anything else in our life significantly?

On the Second Sunday of Great Lent, our Church reads the gospel passage on which Jesus heals the crippled man lowered on a pallet, through the roof.  The Scripture says that the Lord had compassion on the man’s affliction, and He marveled at the faith of the man on the pallet, as well as they who lowered him.  Despite the young man being crippled, seeking mercy from the Lord, the Lord’s first response to the man was “My son, your sins are forgiven.” (Mark 2:5) Jesus eventually heals the man’s paralysis to demonstrate God’s power before all gathered, as well, but His first response was to address the affliction of the man’s soul, much to the surprise of all who witnessed it. Given Jesus’ power to heal blindness, paralysis, issues of blood, leprosy, and even nature itself, might we pause to ask why forgiveness of sins first?

The reason the Lord gives this response, and continues to do so throughout His ministry, is something only He knows completely of course, but Jesus did know that there was a correlation between soul and body.  We have always affirmed, as Orthodox Christians, that the two are intrinsically connected and not independent of one another.  What affects one, affects the other, either positively or negatively.  As human beings, we have a soul and a body, and to be healthy we must focus on the health of both.  We cannot have a decrepit soul and presume to think that it does not affect our body negatively, any more that we can pretend that our body does not receive health from a thriving soul.  Something we might not think has anything to do with the other, actually is affecting it a great deal.

What affects our soul in our everyday actions as we go through life, however small or insignificant it may seem, actually benefits or harms our body too, and us as people.  We might think that five minutes of prayer each night, abstaining from curse words, or only fasting on Wednesdays and Fridays during Lent are so small as to be insignificant, but in reality they contribute a great deal to our daily health.  Conversely, areas of our life in which we cheat a little or sneak something here or there, which may seem harmless, actually do take a toll on us.  Even though we might remember that God sees all, do we ever pause to consider that God may want us to stay away from something because it’s harmful, or flee to something because it helps us through life?  We often have in our minds that God is a “divine scorekeeper,” but do we remember that He does so for our own well being in this life, as well as the world to come?

We have been told, at length, about what steps have been taken by our national Church to correct the unfortunate circumstance we find ourselves in.  What affects one part of the Body, affects all parts of the Body.  What affects one part of our bodies, affects all of us as a person.  May we remember this during this beautiful season of our Church, and lay hold of the blessings which the Lord gives us, His “dedicated vessels,” through His Holy Church.  Let us also continue to pray for Orthodoxy worldwide and in our country, for this reason, as well.

Kali Sarakosti!  Kali Anastasi!  Blessed Lent, blessed Resurrection!



Father Niko Bekris

Our Church

Our Priest and Our Team

Liz Levy

Office Administrator

Marcelo P. Souza

Site administrator, teacher.

Fr. Niko Bekris

Parish Priest since 2015

Anna Teodosiadis

Youth Director
Our Ministries

Latest Updates

On February 25, our Men’s Fellowship group met at the Akkawi home, and enjoyed a  fantastic dinner, fellowship and great discussion!  Given the proximity to the school shooting incident, we talked about the importance of being positive role models and father figures to those who need them most, our families.  A little heavy to be… Read More

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(by Fr. Niko Bekris) I don’t know about you, but May 4, 2018 cannot come fast enough. Since 2008, seventeen movies have been released by Marvel Studios (Black Panther next week!).  If you’ve seen any of these films, you know that they have been steadily building to one epic climax which is finally going to… Read More

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Jr. GOYA got to meet twice this month! On Wednesday February 7th, Jr GOYA gathered for an hour of jumping at Dublin’s Rock’N’JUMP. They had a blast playing basketball, dodgeball and doing almost impossible flips throughout the indoor trampoline park. Jr. GOYA also met the evening of February 21st. They participated in the first Pre-Sanctified… Read More

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Our HOPE & JOY shared their love with the seniors at St. John Kronstadt Senior Home in Castro Valley. They made Valentine cards for each of the seniors, delivered bouquets of flowers and shared songs with them. Thank you to everyone who helped with dinner, transportation and singing!! ❤ See you all next month on March 13th as… Read More

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On Saturday, February 10 our Young Adults gathered for Compline and an authentic game night! As most game nights do… we began the kick off with the American National Anthem, sung for us by Christina and Basem. We enjoyed watching the winter Olympics & Warriors game while playing Connect Four, Corn Hole, Apples to Apples… Read More

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Nea Arxi and Enotita enjoyed dancing together and celebrating the baptism of Fr. Niko’s son Dimitri. Practice continues during Lent on Thursdays. Mid-year Registration is open to any new dancers.  Only $20 for the first child and $10 for each sibling. Contact Eleni Fiorentinos if interested (elenifior4@gmail.com)

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As we prepare to enter the time of Great Lent, the Church reminds us that our lives belong in a greater context than the mundane and immediate things of everyday life. In the Sunday of the Last Judgment, the Church reminds us that we trust in Christ’s love and mercy, and yet we must not forget… Read More

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From the Fathers

Spiritual Sayings

A protection and shelter, I have with you in my life.

Our soul, as a spiritual, active being, cannot remain idle; it either does good or evil, one of the two; either wheat grows in it or tares. But as every good comes from God, and as the means of obtaining every good from God is prayer, those who pray fervently, sincerely, from the depths of their hearts, obtain from the Lord grace to do good, and, before all, the grace of faith; whilst those who do not pray, naturally remain without these spiritual gifts, voluntarily depriving themselves of them by their own negligence and spiritual coldness.

God was the reason of true faith and good behavior and of the knowledge of technology among people. While people continually felt God above them, before them, and around them, in the same way air and light is felt, they attributed and dedicated all their technological works and handiwork to Him, their Lord and Creator.

If a man has no worries about himself at all for the sake of love toward God and the working of good deeds, knowing that God is taking care of him, this is a true and wise hope. But if a man takes care of his own business and turns to God in prayer only when misfortunes come upon him . . . such a hope is vain and false. A true hope seeks only the Kingdom of God. This hope pacifies the heart and produces joy within it.


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