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2010 Clergy Lenten Retreat with Bp. Mark



On Friday, March 5, 2010, (the Friday prior to the Third Sunday of Great Lent— the Sunday of the Cross), the St. John Chrysostom Orthodox Clergy Brotherhood of Metro-Detroit, in conjunction with the Council of Orthodox Christian Churches (COCC), held a Lenten Retreat for Clergy at St. Innocent Orthodox Church in Redford, Michigan. His Grace Mark, Bishop of Toledo, Ohio, Antiochian Archdiocese, led the retreat, with the theme: “The Orthodox Understanding of Sin and Repentance” (Flyer, left). The retreat was hosted by V. Rev. Archpriest Roman Star, President of the Clergy Brotherhood, Spiritual Advisor of the COCC, and Pastor of St. Innocent Church.

With His Grace Bishop Mark presiding (with the blessing of His Grace, Bishop Job, temporary Administrator of the Patriarchal Parishes in the U.S. at that time), all the clergy concelebrated the Liturgy of the Presanctified Gifts, which was a very prayerful and spiritual experience for the participants.

Following the Liturgy the clergy shared fellowship during a Lenten luncheon.

The excellent retreat presentation and discussion, led by His Grace, was held in the church, with considerable mutual dialog and interaction.

The clergy present listened in rapt attention as His Grace spoke:

Igumen Father Gregory (Valentine), of Holy Ghost Orthodox Church (Bulgarian Patriarchate), in Sterling Heights (above left);

Archpriest Lawrence Bacik, of St. Elias Church (Moscow Patriarchate), in Battle Creek (above center);

 Father John Fenton, of Holy Incarnation Church in Lincoln Park, (Antiochian) (above right);

Father Demetrie Vincent, of St. Thomas Church (Albanian, OCA), in Farmington Hills (above left);

Archpriest Andrew Yavornitsky, of St. Mark’s Church (OCA), in Rochester Hills, and Dean of the OCA Michigan Deanery (above center);

 Father Lev Kopistiansky, of Holy Trinity Church (OCA), in Detroit (above right);


Father Kristijan Petrovich, of St. Petka’s Church (Serbian), in Troy (above left);

 Father Benjamin Johnson, of St. Catherine’s Mission (Antiochian) in Ypsilanti (above center); and

Deacon John Wesner, of Ascension Church (OCA), in Albion (above right).

Archpriest Roman Star, of St. Innocent Church (Moscow Patriarchate), in Redford, Dean of the Central States Deanery and President of the Clergy Brotherhood, offered some concluding remarks and thanked His Grace for his edifying words that enriched the clergy who were present during this time of the Great Fast (photo, left).

This was the third such Clergy Retreat to be held, and it is planned to continue to have two Clergy Retreats each year, hosted by Father Roman at St. Innocent Church in Redford—on the Friday before the third Sunday of Great Lent, the Sunday of the Cross; and on November 13th, the feastday of St. John Chrysostom, the Clergy Brotherhood’s patron. The first of these Clergy Retreats was on Friday March 20, 2009, at which Archpriest Chad Hatfield, Chancellor of St. Vladimir’s Theological Seminary in Crestwood, NY, was the Retreat Leader and spoke on the theme, “Renewing Our Priesthood.” The second Clergy Retreat was on November 13th, 2009, when Father Patrick Reardon, of All Saints Church, Chicago, an author, former seminary professor, and co-editor of Touchstone Magazine, was the guest Retreat Leader, and addressed the theme, “Evangelization of America: History and the Word of God.”