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September 2006 Newsletter

Glory to Jesus Christ! I pray this ministry update finds you well! This past month since my last newsletter has been a very full and blessed time. Plebe Summer came to an end and the new semester has started at both St. John’s College and the USNA. At St. John’s College we had ten people in attendance at our first OCF (Orthodox Christian Fellowship) meeting of the new academic year. There is a new group of inquirers and some new Orthodox students as well who are serious about growing in their knowledge and love of Christ. We now have a core group of students at St. John’s participating in the daily Evening Prayers and there are new students I am beginning to meet with one-on-one to help them in their journey to Christ and His Church. One of them is a self-described Agnostic, who is, nevertheless, seeking the truth. We also have a strong leadership team and are gearing up for our third annual retreat Oct. 6-8.

At the USNA, I continue to build on the foundation we laid this summer and am spending a lot of my time trying to help the students navigate through the often cumbersome bureaucratic system at the Naval Academy to get to church and participate in our weekly OCF meetings. Often, I’ll get late notice the day before that our meeting is canceled or needs to be moved because of some other Academy-wide event. The Academy presents many challenges to putting Christ and His holy Church first.

There is also much good to report at the USNA: I was able to prepare one of our Ukrainian Orthodox students for his first confession and take him to St. Nicholas OCA Cathedral in D.C. to make his confession in Russian. He is very excited about growing in his faith. And Mid. Harrison Smith, our student leader, a catechumene for the past two years, was baptized and chrismated this past Sunday. Praise God!

I’m so thankful for the many gifts of support that many of you have provided which make this ministry possible. We are dependent on the contributions of individuals like you to continue offering the students of both colleges opportunities throughout the week to grow in their faith and worship the Holy Trinity. Many of you have joined our list of supporters of this ministry and in this way, are active participants in this ministry that is bringing Christ and His holy Orthodox Church to the students of the Naval Academy and St. John’s College. I remember each of our contributors in my prayers.

If you are not yet a regular contributor to this ministry but believe in this mission, please prayerfully consider making a monthly contribution to sustain us for the coming academic year. Even $10 a month is a great blessing and much needed.