March 2011

Fr. Antony Portrait
Photo Courtesy of Photographer Eric Limon

Dear Brother and Sisters in Christ,

Antiochian Women's Month (March) is here and once again we will be inviting our women to participate in the Divine Liturgy in ways they may not normally: reading the Epistle, taking the collection, offering a homily/reflection on our chosen theme, and holding a bread basket or kalima (red cloth) during Holy Communion.

Our chosen theme for this year is “The On-Going Process of Christian Initiation”, our focus will be the beautiful catechetical sermons of St. Cyril of Jerusalem. This theme is most appropriate for St. Mary's since we are already in the process of preparing catechumens for Baptism and Chrismation which will take place, as is our custom, on Holy Saturday and since March is also Great Lent, the traditional time for such things. Those who offer homilies will be actively participating in this important process.

Even though women are invited to actively participate in the liturgical life of the Church of St. Mary’s all year round, March is the month when we and the Archdiocese emphasize this point. The more lay people participate, the more vital and healthy the parish becomes. The ministry of women is essential to the life of the Body of Christ. I am looking forward to Antiochian Women's Month and hope you are as well.

Yours in Christ,

 Fr. Antony