The Eparchy of St. Josaphat in Parma (USA) held a Lenten lock-in retreat for its youth

Wednesday, 26 March 2014, 12:52
March 22-23, 2014 St. Anne’s Ukrainian Catholic Church in Austintown, Ohio (U.S.A.) of the Eparchy of St. Josaphat in Parma, whose pastor is Reverend Canon Ignatius Kury, hosted an annual Lenten lock-in retreat for the eparchial youth. This year's theme of spiritual renewal was receiving the light of Christ through prayer, fasting and almsgiving.

The keynote speaker this year was Father Lubomyr Zhybak, Administrator of the Holy Trinity Ukrainian Catholic Church in Youngstown, Ohio, who is also a co-director of the eparchial youth committee together with Father Claudio Melnicky, Administrator of the cathedral in Parma and the committee’s director as well as Ms. Christine Patoray, committee’s another co-director. Additional speakers at the retreat were Subdeacon Nicholas York of the Orthodox Church of America from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania as well as Mr. James Echement and Ms. Robbie Jones of the Rescue Mission of Mahoning Valley in Youngstown.

In his conference, whose main theme was prayer, Fr. Lubomyr, among other things, said: “A true prayer is not a monologue, but a heart’s turning towards God as well as the entering into a relationship with the living God. Moreover, in prayer it is not so much important what we tell God, but what God communicates to us. Hence, an authentic prayer is primarily a constant desire to hear the voice of the Holy Spirit, Who always speaks. A genuine prayer is a continual openness to do God’s will, which, after all, is the purpose of prayer and the meaning of the Christian life.”

A new addition of this year's lock-in retreat was a social project, through which the young people had an opportunity on Saturday morning, March 22, to serve the homeless, living at the Rescue Mission of Mahoning Valley in Youngstown.

A coordinator of the eparchial Lenten lock-in retreat each year is Deacon Myron Spak of the Holy Trinity Ukrainian Catholic Church in Carnegie, Pennsylvania. The next Lenten lock-in retreat for the Eparchy of St. Josaphat in Parma’s youth is to be held March 7-8, 2015 in Ohio.

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