Οι ιεραποστολικές και φιλανθρωπικές δραστηριότητες των Ορθοδόξων ιεραποστολών συνεχίζονται σε όλο το πλανήτη. Στα αγγλικά θα παρακαλουθήσετε τις πληροφορίες από την ιεραποστολική δράση της Μητρόπολης Γιοχάνεσμπουργκ και Πρετόριας. Να προσευχόμαστε στο Θεό να ευλογήσει και αυτή τη προσπάθεια και όλες τις προσπάθειες ορθόδοξης κατήχησης και να οδηγήσει τα βήματα των κατηχουμένων στο Άγιο Βάπτισμα και Χρίσμα.
Fr Athanasius Akunda, Fr Athos Pappas, Deacon Nektarius Ritson, Fr Frumentius Taubata, Fr Martin Ritsi and Archbishop Seraphim at Atteridgeville 7 July 2009
Our teaching week at Atteridgeville began rather chaotically. Father Frumentius, the priest at Atteridgeville, had asked for help in preparing some people for baptism, and we had hoped to have a team of students from our Catechetical School, including Fr Athanasius, the Deputy Dean of the School. But Father Athanasius and the students were stranded in Johannesburg without transport, while Father Athos, who was also supposed to join us, had a funeral.
We had hoped to use a church building that was more central in Atteridgeville, but they wanted an exorbitant rental, and so we held it at Fr Frumentius’s home, which is an orphanage.
The orphanage in Atteridgeville West, with Brazzaville shanty tow in the background
We began with the service of the Third Hour, explaining the daily cycle of services, which, if one followed it strictly, would mean a service every three hours, starting with Vespers at sunset, Compline after Supper, Nocturns at Midnight, Matins at 3 am, First Hour at sunrise, Third Hour at mid morning, Sixth Hour at noon, Ninth Hour at mid-afternoon, and back to Vespers again. In practice the services are often “aggregated”, with two or more of them run together, and parishes rarely have all of them. But we hope that those present will include at least some of these services as part of their prayer rule.
Deacon Nektarius teaching adults and teenagers
We then divided into age groups, with Deacon Nektarius teaching the adults and teenagers, while the younger children coloured outline ikons, and those who completed theirs explaned what they were to everyone before we had the Sixth Hour and closed.
Children colouring ikon outlines
Most of them were scenes from the Gospels, such as the Myrrhbearing Women, the healing of the Paralytic, the Samaritan Woman and other themes for the Sundays after Pascha.
We hope that things will be a bit more organised tomorrow, and that the rest of the teaching team will turn up.
Our teaching week at Atteridgeville continued. I wasn’t able to blog about it on Tuesday to Friday because our phones were dead. On the second day we had 25 adults and teenagers, and about as many young children.
This time two students from the Catechetical School, Petros and Demetrios, were able to get there, and joined Deacon Nektarius in teaching the children how to make the sign of the cross, and what it means. I taught the adults about the beginning of the church, and the ordained ministries of bishops, priests and deacons. We were visited by our Archbishop, Metropolitan Seraphim. The Archbishop was accompanied by Father Martin Ritsi, of the Orthodox Christian Mission Center (OCMC) in Florida, USA, and Father Martin spoke briefly as well.
In the course of the day we used the services of the Hours, reading the Third, Sixth and Ninth Hours in English and North Sotho. We tried to involve different people in the group in reading various parts of the services in both languages. Some stumbled over some of the words in the Psalms, but it is important to have people who can read aloud fluently to lead worship, and part of the training is for worship leaders.
On Thursday we were joined by Fr Athanasius Akunda, the deputy-dean of our Catechetical School in Yeoville, and another of the students, Chrysostome Luse, from the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Fr Markus Manyeke. Fr Athanasius taught about Christian ethics, sin and confession.
Some of the people at the Atteridgeville teaching week. The lady in the maroon hat is Maria Nkabinde, the oldest person present, 98 years old.
On the final day we managed to assemble most of the teaching team for the first time. Petrus and Dimetrios had been teaching the younger children the last couple of days. They were able to identify with the children in the orphanage, because they themselves had spent some time in the Twilight Children’s shelter for homeless children who roam the streets. They are sometimes called “street kids”, but Petros, who is originally from Angola, rejects the description, saying that streets don’t have children.
They were sorting through the colouring sheets that the children had done, ikon outlines, and pictures of objects in the church, and we found that the best ones had all been done by one child, nine-year-old Boikhutso Mangena. She is the granddaughter or grandniece of Artemius Mangena, who was baptised last year, and is also attending the course. We thought that we may have a potential ikonographer in our midst, and that hers is a gift that ought to be encouraged and developed.
At times it seemed that we must be doing something right, because the devil kept throwing obstacles in our path. The electricity had been cut off at the Catechetical School, and Fr Athanasius was having endless problems trying to get it reconnected, and it turned out that for some of the time he was actually dealing with crooks who were fishing for a bribe, and not the real electricity department. That wasted a lot of time, and prevented him from joining us for two days. We had problems with our telephone not working, the land line packed up on Tuesday, and my cellphone on Wednesday, so I couldn’t even Twitter any more, and people trying to phone me about arrangements for the course couldn’t get through. And then someone threw stones and broke most of the windows in Fr Frumentius’s mother-in-law’s house. She was the oldest person on our course, 98-year-old Maria Nkabinde, still lively and active.
But generally it has been a good week, and we thank everyone for their prayers and support. Father Frumentius, the priest in Atteridgeville, said he was happy with what had been accomplished.
Πηγή : Khanya
Όσοι Ορθόδοξοι Χριστιανοί της Νοτίου Αφρικής, της Κύπρου και της Ελλάδας επιθυμούν να ενισχύσουν το ιεραποστολικό, φιλανθρωπικό και εκπαιδευτικό έργο της Ορθόδοξης Αρχιεπισκοπής Γιοχάνεσμπουργκ και Πρετόριας, μπορούν να καταθέσουν την αγάπη τους σε έναν από τους παρακάτω τραπεζικούς λογαριασμούς της Ορθόδοξης Ιεραποστολής.
Greek Orthodox Archbishopric of Johannesburg and Pretoria
Account number 200300210Greece
ΙΕΡΑ ΜΗΤΡΟΠΟΛΙΣ ΙΩΑΝΝΟΥΠΟΛΕΩΣ ΚΑΙ ΠΡΕΤΟΡΙΑ
ΣΕΘΝΙΚΗ ΤΡΑΠΕΖΑ ΕΛΛΑΔΟΣ
National Bank of Greece
Account number 103-125002-74
ΠΑΤΡΙΑΡΧΕΙΟ ΑΛΕΞΑΝΔΡΕΙΑΣ ΚΑΙ ΠΑΣΗΣΑΦΡΙΚΗΣ – ΕΛΛΗΝΙΚΗ ΤΡΑΠΕΖΑ
Hellenic Bank Ltd
Account number 121-22-095538-00