This post finds us in Goldsboro, NC, visiting daughter and hubby and grandchildren. This morning we drove the 60 or so miles to All Saints Orthodox Church in Cary, NC. What a thriving parish, blessed to have Father Nicholas Sorensen, Father Philip Pelikan, and Deacon David Keim "at the helm" so to speak!
In the past, we've attended Holy Trinity in Raleigh, but decided to take daughter Tracey to this parish, which serves liturgy and other services in English. However, it is decidedly a house of prayer for all nations -- Greeks, Russians, Serbs ... well the list goes on -- all joined in Christ our God! Some 300 families make up this growing parish, and they are looking to building a new Temple, dedicated to the glory of God.
But, more's to say: Father Nicholas was formerly a Lutheran pastor in the LCMS! He and his family came home some twenty years ago. Father Philip, a military chaplain who will be deployed to Iraq after the first of the year, is relatively new to Orthodoxy and new as a priest -- and a cousin of Jaroslave Pelikan ... know amongst Lutherans and Orthodox alike.
The great joy, however, is that we are all joined in the one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church, visibly joined in Christ. On the way, our daughter, still looking East, and wishing there were an Orthodox parish in Goldsboro, asked "Will you, belonging to a Greek Orthodox parish, be able to commune at this parish?" Of course, the answer was yes ... for in spite of various jurisdictions and ethnic backgrounds, we are indeed in a Eucharistic fellowship (I suppose there are some exceptions ... but we are essentially one!)
Now, Tracey (our daughter) has some Orthodox contacts who live in and near Goldsboro -- which may be an encouragement as she seeks the Way -- and may help her to have more frequent contact with an Orthodox community!
What a joyful day!
I encourage all who may read these words to come and see --- to experience the living reality of Christ's Church!
Glory to God for all Things!