Throughout history the Orthodox Church has undergone many stages of formation and development. There was a “golden age”, but also we experienced years of decline. We thank our Lord Jesus Christ that we have our native Orthodox church today, which, like a mother, embraces all of her children under her wings. Respect, mutual understanding, support, and most importantly prayer and love for God must be the foundation of our church, whose Head is Christ Himself.
But what prompts a person to come to God’s temple, and stay? To become part of the community and serve God’s glory? Clearly it is love. God’s love for us and our love for each other. “In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him. In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also out to love one another.” (1John 4:9-11).
The parish of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of St. Anne’s in Scarborough, Ontario is one of those parishes in Canada which is going through a rebirth and is growing to serve the Lord. Our church is filled with new people, children, new projects are being implemented, Sunday school and our Women’s Organization are thriving and many events are held throughout the year. Recognition and merit go to our priest, Rev. Volodymyr Feskiv and his wife Dobr. Nataliya Feskiv. Father Volodymyr has a clear vision and pours his heart and soul into everything we do at St. Anne’s Church. He is supported by his family as well as our church family and congregation.
On Monday, August 7th, on the day of the Dormition of the righteous St. Anne, our parish celebrated the church feast day. The date fell on a Monday this year but it was decided to keep the Divine Liturgy and celebration on the actual date rather than moving it to a weekend. Our church was filled with people! Numerous priests, sub-deacons and visitors from other parishes came to glorify St. Anna in their prayers. The church was adorned with beautiful flowers, roses and white daisy’s adorned the icon of St. Anna. The smell of incense permeated the air and added a sense of solemnity to the Divine Liturgy . Following the Divine Liturgy, everyone was welcomed to a delicious lunch held in the church hall.
Another interesting event which took place on June 25th was our parish picnic. A community picnic has been held at St. Anne’s for decades, but what differentiates this year’s event was the skillful trans-Carpathian cuisine cooked by a professional chef from Ukraine. He used the traditional cooking tripod which dates back to the 6th century BC. The children took part in crafts, played games and received prizes. Our picnic wouldn’t be complete without a soccer match. Over the years the St. Anne’s picnic has become a community event where local families from the neighborhood join us.
Our Sunday School is growing each year with the addition of young, new families. We recognize that it’s important to learn the word of God, but it’s also important for our children to have fun together to build friendship and bonds we want to see in our church family. To celebrate the end of the school year a trip was organized to an ostrich farm. Children and parents enjoyed the fresh air, games, picnic and various farm animals. These 3 meter ostriches were very friendly and everyone was allowed to feed them.
We look forward to the official visit of His Grace Bishop Andriy in September.
With God’s help we will continue to plan and hold many activities to glorify His name. We invite you to frequently visit our web site schedule at www.stannesorthodox.ca for upcoming events.
St. Anne’s Ukrainian Orthodox Church
525 Morrish Rd. Toronto (Scarborough), ON M1C 1G2
Parish Office: (416) 284-9642
Parish Priest: Reverend Father Volodymyr Feskiv Mobile: (647) 680-0448 e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org