January 18, 2012
HIS EMINENCE METROPOLITAN ALEXIOS` MESSAGE ON THE FEAST DAY OF THE THREE HIERARCHS
As we celebrate the Feast Day of the Three Hierarchs, as we venerate St. Gregory, St. Basil and St. John Chrysostom, we are also celebrating the vision of unity, and honoring the great tradition of education that is uniquely ours as Orthodox Hellenes. One of the great gifts of these wise and holy saints was to be able to interpret the Bible in such a way that it could be understood by the people of their times. Their writings are a legacy of which we are still proud.
With our Sunday Schools, our parochial and charter schools, with our afternoon language schools, the St. John Chrysostom Oratorical Festival and all our other many educational and cultural programs and activities, we give thanks to Almighty God. For in these ways, we honor not only these great saints, but also the beauty and the legacy of our Greek Orthodox Faith and vision.
January 25, 2012
HIS EMINENCE METROPOLITAN ALEXIOS` MESSAGE ON SCOUT SUNDAY
“Educate your children in the way in which they should go, and when they are grown, they will not depart from it.” (Proverbs 22:6)
Sunday, February 5, 2012 is set aside by the Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishop of the Americas to honor God and to recognize Scouts and the blessings that Scouting brings not only to our parish communities but to our nation and indeed the world. The observance of Scout Sunday began years ago in an effort to build awareness among Orthodox Christian faithful of the benefits of scouting and the various programs and awards offered by the Eastern Orthodox Committee on Scouting.
Since the beginning of the Scouting movement in the early 20th century, religious faith has been a major part of the development of the character of the young people involved in the Boy Scouts of America and the Girl Scouts of the USA. Indeed faith in God is at the heart of these programs. "A Scout is Reverent" is the twelfth point of the Scout Law.
I believe that the Scouting program helps our parishes and families to raise faithful and exemplary young men and women who are encouraged and motivated to `do their duty to God and their country,` as they pledge in the Scout Oath.
Through the Eastern Orthodox Committee on Scouting, the Assembly and its predecessor, SCOBA, have actively supported Boy and Girl Scouts of the USA since the 1960`s. Orthodox Scouts can earn one of three age-appropriate awards: St. George for the youngest children, Chi-Rho for the middle years, and Alpha Omega for the oldest Scouts. The rewards require progressively more challenging work culminating in service projects.
On Orthodox Scout Sunday, we encourage all our Scouts to wear their uniforms to their local parishes, as a visible sign of their membership in the Scouting program and the Orthodox Church, incorporating their Scouting experience in the fullness of Church life and youth ministry and exemplifying our conviction that `Christ is all and in all` (Colossians 3:11).
Metropolitan of Atlanta
Further information on the Eastern Orthodox Committee on Scouting may be found at www.eocs.org.