Слава Ісусу Христу! Слава на віки! Glory to Jesus Christ! Glory Be Forever!
Dear Parish Members, Friends, and Visitors;
I hope that all of you and your families are doing all right and that you are healthy during these unprecedented times brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. Holy Week will soon be upon us and on April 19, we will be celebrating the Resurrection of Our Saviour Jesus Christ. And so the questions that arise are “How will we celebrate? Will we be blessing pussy willows and Easter Baskets?”
Our health and government officials issue daily updates and directives of what we need to do to reduce the spread of COVID-19. Beginning on March 13, His Eminence, Metropolitan Yurij and our Graces, Bishops Ilarion and Andriy have issued a number of Epistles and Directives regarding Church Services. On March 16, His Eminence, Metropolitan Yurij stated “Therefore, from this date of this epistle all church services, meetings and activities will cease in churches and on church property of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Canada until further notice.” On April 9, His Grace Bishop Ilarion issued a directive on the Blessing of Paschal Baskets, which applies to St. Andrew’s and other parishes. His Grace’s directive appears below. In the messages from the Church Hierarchy, and especially the directive from His Grace Bishop Ilarion, the request is that we observe the directions of health and government authorities. At St. Andrew’s we continue to follow the advice provided by health and government officials and the directives from our Church Hierarchy.
This year’s celebration of the Resurrection of Our Saviour Jesus Christ will be different. Hopefully, next year we will be back to following our normal Church practices. Until then, let us follow the directives issued by our Church, our Eparchial Bishop, and the guidance offered by health, and government officials; let us be patient; and let us be united as one in prayer.
In closing, and on behalf of the Board of Management, I wish you a very Blessed Pascha.
Christ is Risen! Indeed He Is Risen! Христос воскрес! Воістину воскрес! Khrystos voskres! Voistynu voskres!
Ernest N. Skakun, President