The Office of Vocation & Ministry’s Student Programs for Hellenic College have begun for the semester, and student participation is at an all-time high.
The Roundtable Discussion Group met at the beginning of the semester to propose and vote on the topics of discussion for the meetings. Students recently gathered for the first official discussion of the year, followed by dinner and fellowship at Dean of Students Dn. Nicholas Belcher’s home.
The Exploration of Priestly Vocation program participants met to discuss the theme and events for the year. The seminarians have me subsequently for a weekend retreat at the Metropolis of Boston Camp and for informal lunch discussions.
The Women in Leadership & Service program has also begun with regular discussions and lectures, giving undergraduate young women the chance to grow in their faith and understanding of servant-leadership.
A new OVM discussion group began this semester called Coffeetalk. Students meet three times a week for coffee and an informal discussion about a variety of relevant topics.
The OVM is also excited to announce three new student coordinator positions, where qualified undergraduate students are hired to assist with the organization of Roundtable, EPV and WiLS.
On Saturday, September 21st the undergraduate seminarians took a trip to the Metropolis of Boston Camp for a weekend retreat with Fr. Iakovos of Simonopetra, Mt. Athos. The students arrived Saturday afternoon and returned Sunday afternoon. The theme of the weekend, which also represents the overarching theme for the 2013-14 Academic Year, is based on St. Paul’s exhortation to the church in Rome to "let your love be genuine" (Romans 12:9-18). There were several sessions with Fr. Iakovos where the students were able to listen to and learn from his wisdom as well as ask questions. The weekend also included quiet time, a vigil, a walk through the woods, great food, and great company.
-By Demetri Constantine ‘15
Fifty-seven smiling faces enlivened the Hellenic College Holy Cross campus on Friday, April 5, marking the beginning of a three-day alumni retreat for past participants of the CrossRoad Summer Institute. CrossRoad is a ten-day program for sixty Orthodox Christian high school juniors and seniors; it will celebrate its tenth anniversary this summer.
The retreat began with a combined session on campus, featuring all four past and present CrossRoad directors--Dr. Ann Bezzerides, Dn. Nick Belcher, Mary Long, and Mike Tishel--who presented on different aspects of the Office of Vocation & Ministry’s definition of vocation, “One’s unique and ongoing response to Christ’s call to love God with heart, soul, strength and mind and one’s neighbor as oneself. “ Young men and women traveled from as far as California and Tennessee to engage in a weekend of theological and vocational reflection, worship, quiet time, and communal recreation. Attendees were challenged to re-examine their understanding of vocation in relation to their faith and their call to love.
For the first time ever, post-college CrossRoad alumni had their own retreat track designed especially for emerging adults.
The March Roundtable session took place at the home of Dn. Nick Belcher, who also generously provided a deligious Arabic dinner for the group as they discussed this month's topic, "Evolution and Creationism." The students delved into a dialogue which touched on how we tend to think about reason and faith, and what we can ultimately say about our place in Creation. The group is facilitated by students, and participants are given materials prior to the event to help prepare for an informed discussion. The next Roundtable discussion will be centered on "The Role of a Spiritual Father."
On a beautiful Saturday morning in March, a group of Hellenic College Holy Cross students gathered for the second installment of the Women in Leadership & Service Breakfast Series with Sarah Byrne-Martelli, a Board Certified Chaplain endorsed by the OCA. Fruitful discussion took place as Sarah shared her story as an Orthodox woman serving the Body of Christ. She spoke of her undergraduate experience studying abroad in Greece, graduate studies at Harvard Divinity School (enrolling in various Holy Cross courses through the Boston Theological Institute), and her current role as a chaplain. As a hospice chaplain, Sarah offers a compassionate presence to those nearing end of life and their families in hospital and home care settings. For her work, Sarah draws on Matthew 25, understanding these individuals as Christ, Himself. Students greatly appreciated Sarah's visit, which has introduced them to a new possibility for inspiring service in ministry. The Women in Leadership and Service group is led by Holy Cross graduate student Danielle Xanthos, who also serves on CrossRoad staff.
The Office of Vocation & Ministry at Hellenic College Holy Cross announces the 2013 Women Leaders of the Church Lecture. Mrs. Aphrodite Skeadas, National President, Greek Orthodox Ladies Philoptochos Society, will deliver the lecture at 1:00 PM on Tuesday, March 26, 2013 in the Archbishop Iakovos Library Reading Room, Hellenic College Holy Cross, Brookline, MA.
President Skeadas is speaking on behalf of all Philoptochos women across time that have served in incredible leadership roles in their parishes and communities. To attend, RSVP to Anna Colis at 617-850-1312 or email@example.com. The Women Leaders of the Church Lecture will be streamed live online.
The Office of Vocation & Ministry hosted a group of Gordon College students for an evening of dialogue and fellowship on Saturday, February 16, 2013. The Gordon students are members a great books honors program called the Jerusalem & Athens Forum at Gordon College, a non-denominatioinal Christian liberal arts college in Wenham, MA. The group of Gordon students joined a group of eight Hellenic College Students for Great Vespers in the Chapel followed by a Q&A on the Orthodox Church led by Holy Cross professor Dr. Jim Skedros. The evening was capped off by a lively time of food and fellowship at the local historic Doyles Café. Students from both schools expressed an eager desire to maintain contact in an effort to learn more about one another’s faith traditions and backgrounds.
The Hellenic College sophomore class was invited to dinner and a talk by the Office of Vocation & Ministry for the annual Sophomore Dinner on Thursday, February 7, 2013. HCHC Director of Institutional Advancement Fr. Jim Katinas teamed up with his daughter Catherine, a Hellenic College senior, to give a ‘down to earth’ career services presentation based in large part on the research and methodology of career expert Richard N. Bolles in his book What Color is Your Parachute? Fr. Jim tied in personal examples of how he initially used this excellent resource to discern a career in financial consulting, and his presentation stimulated a variety of questions and discussion. Catherine shared her experience interning for a renowned Boston-based laboratory, and how this guided her decision to pursue graduate studies after college. After an evening of intellectual nourishment and a gourmet buffet, the Sophomore’s were serenaded by the soulful acoustic melodies of local musician Annalise Emerick.
The Office of Vocation & Ministry (OVM) at Hellenic College trains and educates faithful, energetic, high achieving, and service oriented Orthodox Christian young people to be leaders in the church as priests and lay people.
CrossRoad Session 1: June 22-July 2, 2013
CrossRoad Session 2: July 8–18, 2013
OVM programs are made possible through the generous assistance of the following organizations: