Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

I hope that the beginning of the Nativity Fast was joyous for all of us and we will use this time in prayer and repentance to prepare ourselves for joyous celebration of the Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ.

As you know, with your holy prayer, accompanied with 3 of our parishioners, I have completed a 10-day pilgrimage to Mount Athos. These 10 days were filled with love and care for us by brethren of the Holy Mountain. We were given hospitality and possibility to serve in many monasteries and therefore we hope that we are able to bring some of this love and blessings to you, our dear brethren.

If you are interested in following our pilgrimage, please refer to our website and Facebook page that has a brief review of each day accompanied with beautiful pictures: www.hvmla.org and www.facebook.com/HVMLA/.

I want to assure you that all your commemoration slips were delivered and names were read at every Divine service we were attending.

At this point I want to ask all of you to keep us in your prayers, so we can share our experience and love with all of humanity surrounding us.

Upon my return under the capable guidance and supervision of Liana Vertelkina and Alla Bobrova we held probably one of the most successful Slavic Festivals in recent years. Thank you everybody who participated, everybody who helped, everybody who organized, everybody who just came and had fun. We hope that next year our Slavic Festival will be even better and bigger.

I want to thank everybody who participated in our security system Fundraiser, we are really, really almost there. We raised $17,800 and we are only $2,200 short meeting our goal. I hope we will be able to close this gap before new year.

As we journey through the festival period it is important to attend the evening services (Saturday night Vigil). Besides being a beautiful service, Vigil is a great way to prepare yourself for a Sunday morning Liturgy. After Vigil I have sufficient time to hear everybody’s confession without interrupting you for exclamations as it’s often done on Sunday morning. Please take advantage of this gift of God that we are serving this service at our God beloved parish.

One more thing that I want to ask everybody to consider: before you drop off your donations in kind, like used clothes, discs, electronics, etc. at church, please ask us if we really need it, because often these good things just end up in a garbage container.

Once again I wish you all a blessed Nativity.

God save you All!

Archpriest Nazari Polataiko