OCTOBER PASTORAL MESSAGE
Prior to Covid-19, we spent considerable time addressing substance use disorders at St. Luke. Unfortunately, we have seen increases nationwide in opioid-related mortality. We have also seen an increase in use and addiction to alcohol and other substances during these last 6 months. Stress, anxiety, depression, and other issues may very well be contributing factors. In other words, substance use disorders were not quarantined during these months, rather, they have very likely been exacerbated.
Just before the pandemic hit, we introduced you to the "Waves To Wellness" program. Waves to Wellness was born after the loss of one of our own young men, a son of St Luke parish, who became a victim of substance use disorder: Michael Karayannis of blessed memory. Michael fell asleep in the Lord a year and a half ago. His mom and dad, Bill and Kiki established "Waves to Wellness" which is dedicated to ending the devastation that substance use disorder causes families. The program has grown, and I am excited to let you know that it now offers a monthly family support group for free, as it is supported by donors.
If you or someone you know can benefit from the Karayannis family's desire to help others suffering, reach out to me or the Karayannis' family directly from the website link below. A flyer for the first online Family Support Group (October 14th) is included in this Epistle for your convenience. https://www.wavestowellness.org
Also, I am elated that restrictions have eased for worshiping together. I have been encouraged by your faithfulness in attending services and receiving the Sacraments. Indeed, Holy Communion is “Medicine of immortality” as St Ignatius referred to it. Our worship opportunities this month surround our parish feastday of St. Luke on Sunday, October 18th. I invite each of you to come out on the eve of the feast, Saturday the 17th, for the Great Vespers service. Then, join us the next day for the Sunday Divine Liturgy in honor of our beloved St. Luke, the Apostle, Iconographer, and Physician. We have much to be grateful for as a parish and there is no greater way to express our thanksgiving than to gather in worship while thanking Almighty God.
Looking forward to worshiping with you often, my friends, as I pray the intercessions of St. Luke remain with all of us and fill us with the perfect peace and joy that Jesus Christ grants to all who love Him.
Καλο Μηνα – Have a blessed month!