Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Christmas Bazaar and Bake Sale

The Christmas Bazaar and bake sale, held on Sunday, November 16, 2008 at the Nativity of the Mother of God Church, 257 Shaw St, Toronto, were a great success. The event started at 10 am with the English/Slovak liturgy celebrated by H.E. Bishop John. Fr. Andrew Kormanik, the pastor, concelebrated.
Following the liturgy, some 80 parishioners and guests gathered in the hall below and were excitedly waiting for lunch. The wonderful aroma from the kitchen did not make it easy! There was lots and lots of pastry for sale, some knedle, pies, even some cheese spread. Of course, the ladies made cabbage rolls and pirohy as well, however, those were sold by orders placed in advance. Raffle tickets were also sold. Unbelievable number of gifts were donated - 44 in all. When everyone finished their shopping, Bishop John said grace. Lunch was served by the members of Ladies' Guild. Oh, and how wonderful it was! They prepared tasty goulash poured over slices of knedliky, served with a side order of salad and delicious rye bread for anyone wishing to have some. As a tribute to the cooks, several guests went up for seconds! I heard one guest say: "This goulash is like the one my mom used to make. I have not had any since she died. I wish I could get it more often."
After lunch, slices of black forest cake and coffee were placed on the serving table and guests were asked to help themselves. While guests were savouring coffee and dessert, the raffle draw started. There were about 33 happy winners. As you can see, the number of winners did not match the number of prizes: that's because some people won more than once! Bishop John and Fr. Andrew were also among the winners. Everyone had a great time, the Ladies' Guild raised some much needed money and we all went home happy. So, to the ladies, who prepared, cooked, served and cleaned up afterwards: "You did an awesome job. Thank you."
Submitted by Mary Siroky-Snell

More photos from the day:

Sunday, November 9, 2008

St. Michael the Archangel – Odpust

Sunday, November 9th, was a great Feast Day for the parish of St. Michael in Windsor. This Byzantine Catholic church is located in the southern most part of Ontario. Many weeks prior to odpust, parishioners together with the pastor prepared feverishly for this great day. God blessed them with good weather so that they were able to work around the church, especially the church entry way. This work took several months to finish. Thus, after replacing the entire roof and eaves, installing new windows at the back of the rectory, painting of rectory, church and the hall, work that took over a year to bring to fruition, everyone was able to sing the solemn hymn, “Vošel jesy Archyjereju” – at 2pm as H.E. Bishop John entered our church. Bishop John blessed our newly renovated church on our Feast Day - the Feast of St. Michael the Archangel. With Bishop John as the main celebrant, several priests from the surrounding area concelebrated the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom in Church Slavonic and English. The priests who concelebrated were: Fr. Andrew Sipek, past pastor of St. Michael’s, Fr. Layos Angyal, Hungarian Byzantine priest from Windsor, Fr. Robert Barter from St. Nicholas Church, Detroit, Mi, USA, Fr. Joseph Marquis, Sacred Heart Church, Livonia, Mi, USA and the present pastor, Fr. Martin Vavrak. Fr. Martin came to Windsor from the Mukacevo Eparchy in the Transcarpathian part of Ukraine. The day of odpust marked the second anniversary of his arrival to Canada. Homilies were delivered in Slovak and English and reflected the common theme of bodiless heavenly powers, and also about the afterlife. The day was dominated by St. Michael the Archangel, prince of heavenly armies, as well as Mary, Mother of Perpetual Help, honoured and loved especially by her sons, the Redemptorist Fathers – the order to which our own Bishop John, C.Ss.R. belongs. “Myrovanjie – anointing” and “mnoholitsvije – many blessed years” followed the Holy Communion. After the liturgy, clergy, parishioners and guests went downstairs to the beautifully decorated hall and a delicious dinner. In our Eparchy, St. Michael is the last Feast Day of the year and thus Bishop John wished all our faithful a blessed “Filipovka - St. Philip’s fast” and a blessed upcoming Feast of the Nativity of Our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.
Pani Anna a Fr. Martin Vavrak

For more photos from the event click here:


Submitted by: Pani Anna and Fr. Martin Vavrak