Let your light so shine before people,
that they may see your good works
and glorify your Father in heaven.
(St. Matthew 5:16)
Share the Light Sunday
18 January 2009
To the Most Reverend Clergy, Venerable Monastics, and
The Devout Faithful of the Holy Orthodox Churches in the Americas
Dearly Beloved in the Lord,
We, the Hierarchs of SCOBA, the Standing Conference of the Canonical Orthodox Bishops in the Americas, greet you in this new calendar year, and extend our paternal blessings to the plenitude of the Church in North America. As our Lord Jesus Christ exhorts us, we are all called to perform good works, so that the people seeing them will give glory to our Heavenly Father (Matthew 5:16).
Beloved Faithful, it is the great mission of the Church to make known the Gospel of Christ to all people. We know from the Scripture that the Lord sent His Disciples out to preach the Gospel and to heal (Luke 9:2). The Lord is sending us out today with the same sacred mission. It is our great privilege to reveal the workings of God in this world by our own labors of love, forgiveness, mercy, compassion, peace-making, and by constantly spreading this eternal truth.
Like good and wise stewards, we should employ every means to fulfill these labors, and be faithful to our mission of proclaiming the Gospel. Among our many resources, we possess the Orthodox Christian Network (OCN), a media agency of SCOBA that serves to shed the light of Christ through its multi-faceted media ministry.
In order to support the work of OCN, we, the Hierarchs of SCOBA, established the third Sunday of January as “Share the Light Sunday,” an annual observance of this ministry. This year, we ask that you dedicate January 18, 2009, as an opportunity to familiarize your parish with its ministry, and consider your own level of support for its mission.
May this New Year be one in which we radiate more and more the saving Light of Christ, a light of truth, love and salvation.
With paternal blessings and love in Christ,
†Archbishop DEMETRIOS, Chairman
Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America
†Metropolitan PHILIP, Vice Chairman
Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese
of North America
†Metropolitan CHRISTOPHER, Secretary
Serbian Orthodox Church in the USA and Canada
†Metropolitan NICHOLAS of Amissos, Treasurer
American Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Diocese
in the USA
Romanian Orthodox Archdiocese
in America and Canada
Bulgarian Eastern Orthodox Church
Orthodox Church in America
Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the USA
†Bishop MERCURIUS of Zaraisk
Representation of the Moscow Patriarchate in the USA
†Bishop ILIA of Philomelion
Albanian Orthodox Diocese of America