Aloha to All!
 
I pray all of you are doing well considering the current challenges we face with the Corona Virus Pandemic.  I am keeping all of you in my thoughts and prayers, especially in these times.  Please take good care of yourselves, your family and your loved ones.  Please be mindful of anyone who may be alone or isolated, perhaps giving him/her a call, sending a postcard, or using email or video chat, etc.
 
I am now including my dear ones from our Maui Mission in the emails.
 
Since we are unable to gather in our Churches, Missions, Fellowships, etc., we now have services available by Conference Call.  Please call (808) 913-1562 for all scheduled services.  Everyone who calls in will be automatically muted, with the exceptions of me, our chanters/readers (Oahu).
 
We have the following services available this coming week:
 
Saturday Great Vespers:  Saturday, March 28th, 5:30 p.m.  http://www.agesinitiatives.com/dcs/public/dcs/p/s/2020/03/28/ve/gr-en/se.m03.d29.ve.pdf
 
Sunday Morning Orthros:  Sunday, March 29th, 9 a.m.

Akathist Hymn:  Friday, April 3rd, 6:30 p.m.
 
Saturday Great Vespers:  Saturday, April 4th, 5:30 p.m.
 
Shared links, above, are from AgesInitiatives.com.
 
Please spread the news of the upcoming services via Conference Call.  I will inform everyone if there are any changes, additions, cancellations of the scheduled services.  In the coming days, I will share upcoming information about opportunities for fellowships, classes, gatherings, etc., via online or through Conference Calls that everyone may participate in.
 
With Love in Christ,
+Fr. Alexander

Other Live Broadcasts

Unfortunately, there is no Divine Liturgy at our church right now.  But you can attend (watch) the Liturgy offered online.

You can find the links of the live streaming/recorded services visiting

https://www.goarch.org/live-broadcasts


Previously Recorded Services

Great Vespers 
Saturday, March 21, 2020 - Service Link - Watch Here

https://www.facebook.com/199109520206760/videos/2936802396386199/

Divine Liturgy Sunday, March 22, 2020 - Watch Here

https://www.facebook.com/199109520206760/videos/572978390240963/


A Blessed Great Lent to All!

“Let us present a good fast, well-pleasing to the Lord! A true fast is alienation from the evil one; the holding of one's tongue, the laying aside of all anger, the removal of all sensuality, of accusation, falsehood and sins of swearing. The weakening of these will make the fast true and well-pleasing.”  ~Hymn from Vespers of Clean Monday 

Dearest Spiritual Ohana,

It is with an overwhelming sense of joy, at least for me and, hopefully, for all of you, that we enter into the Season of Great Lent on Monday, March 2nd!  I wish all of you a Most Blessed Journey through this specially appointed time of the year, one that is fulfilling and joyful as we “taste and see that Christ is the Lord,” as the Communion

Hymns from the Liturgy of the Presanctified Gifts proclaims:

We go through this time of the year to refresh ourselves and come to the realization of what a purposeful life is.  A purposeful life is one that is fulfilled with the Presence of Christ in the center of it.  No matter how hard we try to be happy in our lives, we cannot possibly be truly joyful without His Presence.  The Lord loves us immeasurably and always desires to dwell in each of us, but it is our free will that allows Him to either enter or not to enter into the indwelling of our hearts.

Renowned Orthodox Theologian Fr. Alexander Schmemann, of blessed memory, had a phrase that was simple, yet profound:  “Taking Lent seriously.”  This is a concrete sign that we are to take God seriously.  Jesus Christ, Himself, was very serious, especially when it came to life and death, and God and salvation.  We, too, need to take Great Lent and God seriously.

I found some wonderful advice on how we can be truly serious about Great Lent and God.  I would like to share the following with you from Fr. Steven Kostoff of the Orthodox Church in America (O.C.A.):  “Great Lent is the ‘School of Repentance.’  It is roughly equivalent to an “annual tithe” in which we offer ourselves back to God so as to be received with love, as was the prodigal son.  As such, Great Lent is a gift from God, guiding us toward a way of life we may be reluctant to assume on our own, suffering as we often are from spiritual apathy or a simple lack of focus.  Great Lent is also goal-oriented, for it leads us on a spiritual pilgrimage of preparation toward the ‘night brighter than the day’ of Pascha and the Risen Lord.  Great Lent is ‘sacred’ and ‘soul-profiting.’  It is a key component in the Orthodox Way of living out the Christian life to which we have been committed in holy Baptism.”

Fr. Kostoff, then goes on to offer us some great, practical advice:  “What can we do?  How do we not squander this time set aside for God?”

  • Prayer- Make provision to be in church for some of the Lenten services.  Assume or resume a regular Rule of Prayer in your home.  Read the psalms and other Scripture carefully and prayerfully.  Pray for others.
  • Charity- Open your heart to your neighbor. If you believe that Christ dwells within you, then try to see Christ in your neighbor.  Make your presence for the “other” encouraging and supportive.  Restrain your “ego” for the sake of your neighbor.  Help someone in a concrete manner this Great Lent.

¬üFasting - Set domestic goals about the manner in which you will observe the fast.  Test yourselves.  Resist minimalism.  If you “break” the fast, do not get discouraged or “give up,” but start over.  Assume that your Orthodox neighbor is observing the fast.  Seek silence.  Allow for a different atmosphere in the home.

With all these in mind, let us take courage and embark upon the journey through Great Lent, knowing that it is for our personal benefit, with the purpose for us to live a life filled with true joy, having Christ dwelling within us and always being in our midst.

May we complete this journey, with our hearts illumined and ready, to walk with Christ through His Passion, Crucifixion, Death on the Cross, His Descent into Hades and ultimately rejoice in the Celebration of His Holy Resurrection.

Have a Blessed Great Lent!

With Love in Christ,

+Fr. Alexander


Latest Update on Changes Related to Coronavirus

In an effort to keep parishioners safe the following statement was issued by His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros of America and the Eparchial Synod.

PLEASE CLICK HERE FOR INFORMATION

ADDITIONAL PRACTICES


Congratulations to Parish Youth on FDF Success!

This year’s Greek Orthodox Folk Dance & Festival (FDF) took place February 13-16 at the Anaheim Marriott in Anaheim, California.  FDF is the largest youth ministry program of the Metropolis of San Francisco, hosting over 3,000 participants annually.

Once again, the Aloha Youth Choir very successfully represented our Parish, winning 1st place in the choral competition, Division 1. We competed against 8 choirs this year, and the quality level was very high...the competition very stiff.
 
In addition, our younger dance group Nisiotopoula, won a special achievement award for their Pontic suite of dances. 

Congratulations are in order to all the kids for their hard work, as well as to the parents that always support them by bringing them to rehearsals twice a week.
We want to again thank our Parish Council, as well as individual donors, who made our trip to Anaheim possible. For more information, visit www.yourfdf.org

(Right click on photos for larger image)



Epiphany - Ala Moana Beach Park