Saturday, May 30, 2009

Holy Ghost Church

Please keep Holy Ghost Church and it's parishoners in your morning prayers today.

From the Holy Ghost Orthodox Christian Church website:

Church History

Holy Ghost Orthodox Church was founded when hundreds of faithful, thoroughly committed to the Lord and sincerely devoted to the time-honored traditions of Eastern Christianity, liberated themselves from the yoke of Latinization and discovered the eternal truth of Holy Orthodoxy. Having lost their house of worship by the ruling of a civil court of law, the members of this new, self-converted Family in Christ established Holy Ghost Church on August 7, 1937. Their first Divine Liturgy was celebrated to God’s glory in the grassy field of Mont Clare, PA by their pastor, Fr. Alexander Kossey. Those founders were living proof that the Church is not the building, but the people; not the brick and mortar, but the Faith and Tradition; not the stained glass and gold leaf, but the sacraments and service to God.

As the winter of 1937 approached, the homeless parish was “adopted” by the good people of St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Phoenixville. Filled with compassion and understanding of this congregation’s plight, these Christian neighbors opened their hearts and their St. Margaret’s Chapel for the celebration of Sunday services, baptisms, weddings and funerals. Nonetheless, the faithful of Holy Ghost wanted a church of their own.

It was with the direction of Fr. Michael Hoynak and the phenomenal generosity of countless individuals that the present properties of the 22-acre Phoenix Park were purchased from the Reeves Family, owners of Phoenix Steel. On that spacious expanse was a long-time uninhabited mansion that was to serve as the church, as well as a banquet and dance hall, Sunday School classrooms and a residence for the pastor. It took much hard work to make the transformation—work both on the building itself and in using it for dinners, picnics, dances and other fund-raising efforts.

Over the years, the down payment for a new church was raised through the incredible efforts of the dedicated members of the parish. Through the extraordinary vision of Fr. Stephen Shutack, pastor from 1951 until 1975 and the leadership of the parish council under the presidency of Joseph F. Rudick, the construction of the new edifice was brought to realization. Ground was broken, and His Excellency, Auxiliary Bishop Methodius blessed the church cornerstone. The long-awaited goal of the founding fathers came to fruition on November 28, 1965. On that Sunday, His Eminence, Metropolitan Orestes, first Bishop of the American Carpatho Russian Orthodox Diocese, consecrated the new magnificent house of worship, patterned after Christ the Savior Cathedral in Johnstown.

During the pastorates of Fr. Andrew Hutnyan (1975-1976) and Fr. John Baranik (1976-1985), movement and efforts toward the building of a new rectory were undertaken. The spacious and beautiful parish home was dedicated on November 12, 1978 by his Excellency, Bishop John.

The congregation transformed the social center into a facility for catering weddings, anniversaries and other receptions, under the leadership of Leonard Mauger. The parish mortgage was burned in 1987, in conjunction with the 50th Anniversary of the parish. The Golden Jubilee celebration took place on November 4th of that year, with His Grace, Bishop Nicholas presiding at the festivities. Under the guidance of Fr. Michael Dahulich (1985-2001), new icons and murals were written and a new chandelier was installed in the church interior; the house of worship was air-conditioned; new stained-glass doors were added; the church basement was transformed into Sunday School classrooms; and an outdoor shrine was constructed on the site of mansion that had served as the original church.

More at website:

The blood, sweat, and tears of generations of stewards and custodians, members of the St. Nicholas Brotherhood at Holy Ghost Church protected, preserved, and thus created the holy Church for the honor and glory of God and future generations.

Today and always we must all remember, and meditate on God's Word.

The Ten Commandments

Rev. George Mastrantonis

The First Commandment

"I am the Lord thy God.... Thou shalt have no other gods before me."

"And God spoke all these words, saying, I am the Lord thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. Thou shalt have no other gods before me." Ex. 20:1-3.

The Second Commandment

"Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven images... Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them."

"Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me: And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments." Ex. 20:4-6.

The Third Commandment

"Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain."

"Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain; for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain." Ex. 20:7.

The Fourth Commandment

"Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy."

"Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: But the seventh day is the sabbath of the Lord thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son nor thy daughter, thy man servant, nor thy maid servant, nor thy cattle. nor thy stranger that is within thy gates: For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day:wherefore the Lord blessed the sabbath day,and hallowed it." Ex. 20:8-1 1

The Fifth Commandment

"Honor thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long."

"Honor thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee." Ex. 20:12.

The Sixth Commandment

"Thou shalt not kill." Ex. 20:13.

The Seventh Commandment

"Thou shalt not commit adultery" Ex. 20:14.

The Eighth Commandment

"Thou shalt not steal." Ex. 20:15.

The Ninth Commandment

"Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor." Ex. 20:16.

The Tenth Commandment

"Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's house."

"Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's wife, not his manservant, not his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbor's." Ex. 20:17.


Anonymous said...

This was very interesting to read.
I have recently joined this church the past few years.

The interest in my attending the political meetings, has been quite confusing ot my family.

We felt loved and needed in the beginning but after researching this land situation feel used in this mission of the council. Everyone one of us do not agree with what is going on. We all do not believe in selling land to get money for projects. This land is the nicest property in any Pan-American, Carpatho, Armenian, Greek or Albanian Orthodox Church.

What is taking place is not the work of God at this time in this Temple. Please pray they can heal.

Anonymous said...

Where do you get your figures from as when I left the church in early 2000 there were over 400 members including those ages 18 - Senior Citizens???? Every census had this fact. No one had to beg people to help we all worked together and enjoyed it every week.

My family told me that on avarage there are 75-100 in church on a good day including the choir and youth now. How sad : <

My nephews play every Christmas went from 80 kids that filled the social hall to a little over 15-20 children.

When they put up the twin towers, do you think more will join? Will they get rid of the beauty of the stained glass, grounds and trees for a parking lot to share with the twin towers for subsidized housing?

Changes is needed in this church as much as it was in this country.

Anonymous said...

Then what would be written?

The air changed, the good people became confused by the contrast between what was said and what was done? Written laws were overridden and those who objected were refused Communion? Believers left to find truth? Property was sold to keep the place going? The beautiful church was hidden behind a public housing project and newcomers couldn't find it? What will conclusion history write? Inquiring minds want to know.