International Orthodox Christian News

SCOBA Encyclical for Share the Light Sunday - January 18, 2009

Let your light so shine before people,that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven. (St. Matthew 5:16) Share the Light Sunday18 January 2009To the Most Reverend Clergy, Venerable Monastics, andThe Devout Faithful of the Holy Orthodox Churches in the Americas Dearly Beloved in the Lord,We, the Hierarchs of SCOBA, the Standing Conference of the Canonical Orthodox Bishops in the Americas, greet you in this new calendar year, and extend our paternal blessings to the plenitude of the Church in North America. As our Lord Jesus Christ exhorts us, we are all called to perform good works, so that the people seeing them will give glory to our Heavenly Father (Matthew 5:16).Beloved Faithful, it is the great mission of the Church to make known the Gospel of Christ to all people. We know from the Scripture that the Lord sent His Disciples out to preach the Gospel and to heal (Luke 9:2). The Lord is sending us out today with the same sacred mission. It is our great privilege to reveal the workings of God in this world by our own labors of love, forgiveness, mercy, compassion, peace-making, and by constantly spreading this eternal truth.Like good and wise stewards, we should employ every means to fulfill these labors, and be faithful to our mission of proclaiming the Gospel. Among our many resources, we possess the Orthodox Christian Network (OCN), a media agency of SCOBA that serves to shed the light of Christ through its multi-faceted media ministry. In order to support the work of OCN, we, the Hierarchs of SCOBA, established the third Sunday of January as “Share the Light Sunday,” an annual observance of this ministry. This year, we ask that you dedicate January 18, 2009, as an opportunity to familiarize your parish with its ministry, and consider your own level of support for its mission.May this New Year be one in which we radiate more and more the saving Light of Christ, a light of truth, love and salvation.With paternal blessings and love in Christ,

†Archbishop DEMETRIOS, Chairman

Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America

†Metropolitan PHILIP, Vice Chairman

Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America

†Metropolitan CHRISTOPHER,

Secretary Serbian Orthodox Church in the USA and Canada

†Metropolitan NICHOLAS of Amissos, Treasurer

American Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Diocese in the USA

†Archbishop NICOLAE,
Romanian Orthodox Archdiocese in America and Canada
†Metropolitan JOSEPHBulgarian Eastern Orthodox Church
†Metropolitan JONAHOrthodox Church in America

†Metropolitan CONSTANTINEUkrainian Orthodox Church of the USA

†Bishop MERCURIUS of Zaraisk
Representation of the Moscow Patriarchate in the USA

†Bishop ILIA of PhilomelionAlbanian Orthodox Diocese of America

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