March 29th, 2020
4th Sunday of Lent – St. John Climacus
Update to Archbishop Irénée’s letter of direction from Tuesday, March 17, 2020
To all the Reverend Clergy, Monastics and Faithful of the Archdiocese of Canada
Dear Fathers, Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
It has been two weeks since Archbishop Irénée sent a letter to all the clergy of the Archdiocese instructing them to cancel all church services and church functions until April 1, 2020. Since that time, a review of the state of the dioceses of the Orthodox Church OCA has occurred through teleconferences with the Metropolitan, the Bishops of the Holy Synod and the Chancellors and with medical and legal counsel.
The COVID 19 virus transmission continues to gain momentum in Canada and our civil authorities are issuing stricter guidelines, both provincially and nationally with regards to gatherings, in order to prevent its spread. The situation continues to change day by day, even hour by hour.
As a result, Vladyka Irénée now requests that all clergy cancel all church services and church functions indefinitely. He will continue to monitor the situation and will provide updates to this directive when it becomes possible.
Regarding services for Pascha, the Archbishop is not prepared to make any pronouncement at this time. Pascha is only 3 weeks away and anything can and may happen during this time frame. What, where and how this Holy Feast may unfold is still to be decided by the Archbishop.
Please continue to pray for Vladyka and understand that these are not easy decisions to make.
Through the prayers of the Holy Theotokos and of all the saints, O Lord Jesus Christ, have mercy on us and save us.
In Christ Jesus, who shelters us in the Most High,
Fr. Phillip, Chancellor
Vladyka Irénée has blessed an all-Canada prayer service to be held online via the Zoom app this Friday at 7pm Eastern time – 4pm Yukon time. The Akathist and Small Compline will be served by Fr Geoffrey Ready, and a small choir. This is a much-needed opportunity for all of us in Canada to join together in prayer and ask the Mother of God for her protection during this very challenging time. The intention is to continue this common prayer effort together at least a few more Fridays during Great Lent. We may be “self-isolated” but we are united as the Body of Christ.
Most Holy Theotokos Save Us!
A PDF of the service will be posted on the Archdiocese.ca website by Friday.
https://zoom.us/j/430585929Or iPhone one-tap :
Canada: +15873281099,,430585929# or +16473744685,,430585929#
Dial (for higher quality, dial a number based on your current location):
Canada: +1 587 328 1099
Please visit our Schedule page for a listing of the ongoing services and activities scheduled in the Mission.