Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Bishop Ambrose in Sydney

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On Sunday, November 12/25, 2018, the feast day of St John the Merciful, Bishop Ambrose visited the Greek Old Calendar parish of Sts Cosmas and Damian in Sydney. He concelebrated with father Nebojsa Mirkovic (ROCA).

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Monday, November 19, 2018

Baptism in Sydney

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On Friday, 26.10/9.11. 2018, the servant of God Natalia was received into the Holy Orthodox Church by the Mysteries of Baptism and Chrismation.

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The services of the making of a Catechumen, the Baptism, and the Chrismation were performed in English by priest Nebojsa Mirkovic, with the sponsors and a few guests present. In accordance with the canons of the Church, the baptism occurred by full immersion three times.

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The next day, she communed of the Holy Mysteries for the first time at the Divine Liturgy at the same church.

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Natalia was raised in the roman-catholic heresy, but having come to know Christ at a mature age, is now an Orthodox Christian. She is a member of the parish of St John of Kronstadt in Sydney. May God grant health and salvation, and many years, to our sister in Christ, the newly-illumed Natalia, and may she keep her baptism pure from any stain, error or sin!

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Thursday, November 1, 2018

Visit of Bishop John to Lyons

On Sunday 15/28.10, the parish of St Nicholas the Wonderworker in Lyons (France), welcomed Bishop John. At the Divine Liturgy, he concelebrated with Protopriest George (GOC), Protopriest Hristo, Protodeacon German Ivanoff-Trinadzaty and Deacon Eugene Doroshin.

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Many children attended the service, which was marked by a distinctive sense that the parish is one spiritual family in Christ. There were many communicants. The excellent choir was adeptly led by Geman Ivanoff-Trinadzaty junior. After the service the parish sisterhood offered an extensive lunch in the parish hall.

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Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Where is the Church? The example of St John the Chozebite.

john1.jpg St John the Chozebite, commemorated on 3/16 October, received the holy Schema of the monks from his grandfather, who was also a monk. After bidding him farewell, John departed for Jerusalem.

“At that time, he did not accept the holy Fourth Oecumenical Synod at Chalcedon, but separated himself from the Orthodox Church; for this he was prevented from approaching the holy Cross when he attempted to venerate it. Then he heard a voice while he slept, saying, ‘They that are not in communion with the Orthodox Church are not worthy of worshipping the Cross of Jesus, our Lord.’ He awoke after this and hastened to a church where he sought absolution.”

We are very familiar with St Mary of Egypt, and how her sinful life prevented her from entering the Holy Sepulchre specifically in order to venerate the Holy Cross. But why was St John the Chozebite prevented? He was a pious monk from his youth, from a good Orthodox family…!

The life of the saint does not state specifically whether his grandfather and guide to the spiritual life also rejected the Synod of Chalcedon. But one might deduce that this was the case, since St John made no changes to his life while living at his first monastery. Neither did he find it possible to return to live there, having been enlightened by God as to the correctness of the Fourth Oecumenical Council.

St John’s grandfather had led him to the spiritual life. He owed his relative every respect as an elder. Yet he did not allow their spiritual bond, nor the bond of blood to delay keep him separated from the Church of Christ.

St John lived during the theological controversy regarding the Divine and human natures of Christ. It was a time of extreme troubles among Christians, precisely because of differences in doctrine. In the history of the Church, new and un-orthodox teachings emerged from a complicated background, where personal passions, antipathies, ‘politics’ and historical circumstances figured prominently. It must have been confusing indeed for the faithful to find the truth. Yet St John did not choose to ignore the problems, nor did he conclude that ‘this is for the Bishops to decide’, nor did he simply ’stay with the family’ to avoid making a decision.

Today’s theological controversy deals with the nature of the Church. Some promote the strange idea that there is no necessity for Orthodox Christians to be in communion, asserting they are all ‘in the church’ if they call themselves Orthodox and have not denied any of the important tenets of the Orthodox Christian faith - even if find that in actual fact, they are separate from all other Orthodox Christian churches. This is a teaching markedly different from the traditional view of the Church. It is true that our modern time is confusing and difficult for the faithful to navigate - but the difficulties pale against the realities of life during the Christological or iconoclastic controversies.

In our extremely complicated times each one of us must stop and honestly reflect whether we are in the Orthodox Church of Christ.

May God enlighten those who truly seek Him to deny themselves, and bravely seek His One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church!

Monday, August 27, 2018

Children’s camp in England

During August 2018, an informal children’s camp was held in England, where Bishop John contributed with teaching Law of God classes. The children experienced communal camp life, daily church services, living in tents and taking their turn in a roster of duties.

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Everyone sang and read at the services together.

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We had our meals together, during which we listened to reading from an edifying children’s book.

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Daily blessing of porridge at breakfast!

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The children had lessons every day. This years’ theme was the Divine Liturgy.

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Vespers in candlelight.

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The children prayed every morning and evening in the improvised barn-chapel, which they themselves helped decorate.

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View of the altar in the barn-chapel.

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Finding the spot in the service book…

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The altar server with the censer ready.

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We celebrated the Divine Liturgy on Sunday and at the end of the camp.

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The children baked their own prosphoras, which were offered at the Liturgy.

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In addition to other excursions, we made a pilgrimage to the monastery of St Fursey, a 7th century Irish missionary monk who established a monastery on the site of an earlier Roman fortress.

Troparion of St. Fursey of Burgh Castle, Tone 5
Establishing thy monastery in a Roman fortress / thou didst teach men that the Orthodox Faith is a true bastion / against the onslaughts of every evil force, O Father Fursey. / Wherefore pray to God for us / that we may all be bastions of the Faith / standing firm against the rising tide of falsehood, / that our souls may be saved

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The walls of the huge Roman fortress where St Fursey built his monastery.

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Group photo of the pilgrims.

Saturday, August 25, 2018

Transfiguration at the Convent of the Annunciation in London

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On the great feast of the Transfiguration of our Lord, Bishop John visited the historical Convent of the Annunciation in London, UK. The Convent was established in the 1950s by St. John of Shanghai and San Fransisco and nuns from the Holy Land, guided by the ever-memorable Abbess Elizabeth (Ampenoff).

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The Midnight Office, Hours and Liturgy were read and chanted in Slavonic, Arabic and English, and attended by faithful of diverse national backgrounds. Bishop John blessed the grapes and fruits brought by the people. After the service, the sisters invited the parishioners for tea.

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Newly-ordained priest Nicolae Capitanu (Old Calendar Orthodox Church of Romania) services the large population of Old Calendar Romanian faithful in London.

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Friday, August 17, 2018

Bishop John visits St Edward Orthodox Monastery

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On Sunday 30.7./12.8. Bishop John visited the St Edward Orthodox Monastery near London, England. By God’s providence, the relics of the 10th century Orthodox Martyr, saint Edward the King of England, are venerated in this monastery since 1988. The monastery is located in peaceful surroundings within the Brookwood cemetery.

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At the Divine Liturgy Archimandrite Alexis, Priest Borislav and Hierodeacon Sabbas (GOC) concelebrated. Parishioners of many nationalities attended the service, which was chanted in English, Greek, Romanian and Slavonic.

The brotherhood kindly offered a meal and opportunity to speak with the people after the service.

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

St John of Shanghai and San Fransisco service in Sydney

Pictures from the service in honour of St John of Shanghai and San Fransisco in Sydney.
Sts Cosmas and Damian Church (GOC), priest Nebojsa Mirkovic (ROCA)

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Sunday, May 27, 2018

Pentecost in Sydney

On the feast of Pentecost in Sydney, at the parish of Sts. Cosmas and Damian, father Nebojsa Mirkovic (ROCA) conducted the services in three languages: English, Greek and Slavonic. The church was well attended on this great feast, and many received Holy Communion. By the time the Slava cake was cut at the end of the long service, many had unfortunately left!

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Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Pastoral Epistle

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Pastoral Epistle

of the Synod of Bishops to all the faithful children of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia

Christ is Risen!

Having gathered together on these Paschal days in the blessed city of Odessa, the Synod of Bishops congratulates its flock with the Feast of the Resurrection of Christ! May this greatest event of all times help to strengthen us on the sorrowful path of the carrying of the truth of Christ, in the midst of the numerous modern departures and apostasy!

Thanks be to God,- by God’s mercy, the true Orthodox faith is open to us, as is the Church that contains this truth. We have everything that is necessary for our salvation, and our task consists in bringing this truth into our souls and hearts before the Last Judgment of God.

Christ strengthens all of us through His mercy and grace, as do the prayers of His Most Pure Mother and the Saints. We must vigilantly and diligently pray for each other during these evil and sorrowful times. The Church of Christ is one and universal, and the genuine Church must testify before the world regarding the truth, including the reality of its unity. The fortification of its unity directly depends on each member of the Church. Therefore, we will serve Christ, strengthening the unity of the Church founded by Him, whilst praying ceaselessly for one another, and for our entire Church!

In fulfillment of this hope, we invite all of our parishes to include in the augmented litany, before the petition: “Again we pray for them that bring offerings …”, a petition for the fortification of the unity of the Church of Christ: “For the strengthening of the unity of Thy Holy Church, to destroy our pride and strengthen us in humility and love, that we may be one with Christ, as He is one with the Father and the Holy Spirit, we pray, hearken and have mercy.”

May this good deed serve to the glory of God and for the benefit of the Church.

Truly, Christ is risen!

April 12/25 2018, St. Basil the Confessor

Chairman of the Synod of Bishops

+ Metropolitan Agafangel

Members of the Synod

+ Archbishop George (Secretary of the Synod)

+ Bishop Athanasius

+ Bishop Kirill

+ Bishop Gregory

+ Bishop Nikon

+ Bishop Anfim

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Metropolitan Agafangel
First Hierarch of the Russian
Orthodox Church Abroad

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Bishop John of Melbourne
Vicar bishop of Australia

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Parishes

Melbourne, VIC
Contact: Bishop John
Telephone: 0422556968

Sydney, NSW
Parish of St John of Kronstadt.

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  • Serving priest: Father Nebojsa Mirkovic
  • Address:
  • Service times:
    Sundays and feast days: Matins 730 am
    Divine Liturgy: 9 am.
    Please contact us to confirm what time Liturgy is served.
  • Saturdays and eves of feasts: Vespers 530 pm
    or All-night Vigil 6 pm

Dandenong, VIC
Community of the Tabinsk Mother of God Icon

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  • Services once a month
  • Visits by Bishop John

Western Victoria
Annunciation of the Mother of God Women’s Monastic Community

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  • Spiritual Father: Bishop John.
  • Address: 266 Nowhere Creek Rd, Nowhere Creek, 3469
  • Service times:
  • Sundays and feast days: Divine Liturgy: 9 am
  • All-night Vigils (including Divine Liturgy) on select occasions.
    Please contact us to confirm what time Liturgy is served.

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Canberra, ACT

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