Holy Trinity in Casper, Wyoming has been holding weekly Bible studies with the men in the Casper Re-Entry Center/Therapeutic Community (CRC/TC) since May, 2012. This is a medium security correctional facility that offers a 13 month long drug and alcohol treatment program and re-entry services to incarcerated felons. These services are offered in preparation for their parole and reentry into the community. Our Bible study is a volunteer program that supports the resident’s preparation for re-entry into the community.
Our small ministry has grown over the three years from an average of 5 men per week in 2012 and 9 per week in 2013 to 17 men currently attending weekly. The weekly Bible Study is open to all residents in the TC program. Last fall, two men were received into the Orthodox Church through the sacrament of Chrismation. Several other men are working through the Orthodox catechism and are having serious discussions about entry into the orthodox faith.
This small effort is funded and supported through the generosity of our local Philoptochos, the Orthodox Christian Prison Ministry (OCPM), and a few open-hearted private donors. We strive to make the studies timely, compelling, and beneficial. We provide Orthodox Study Bibles (OSB), prayer ropes, workbooks, and catechism books. The men also enjoy receiving pens, note pads, and highlighters to assist with their Bible study. Fr. Stephen Ziton visits with the men at least monthly. During these visits he offers prayer services, homilies, words of encouragement, answers questions, and provides spiritual counseling. The men are always excited to receive him and respond positively to his visit.
In July of 2006, our chapter of St. John the Baptist in Euless, TX was chosen to develop a project that reflected the work of Philoptochos. As a result of that “chapter challenge” we successfully produced a DVD entitled, “Angels and Autism – Finding Faith for the Autistic Child.” We have since distributed over 250 copies of the DVD from coast to coast.
In 2008, an Autism Assistance Fund was established at our National Philoptochos Society to provide assistance and support to persons within the autism spectrum and we have found that many chapters order the DVD and use it as a tool for the subject of autism. Our hope in producing this documentary was to enlighten the viewer with the challenges families face in their attempt to instill spirituality in their children’s lives.
This 18 minute DVD was produced with the help of professional videographers and editors and features health experts and families children who have autism. It is an excellent medium for the entire parish, GOYA, Church School classes, Philoptochos meetings and even community activities.
Feeding the Hungry
Fifteenth Children’s Medical Fund Luncheon
in Boston on October 31, 2015
The Children’s Medical Fund Luncheon was established in 1989 and is hosted on a biennial basis rotating between the Direct Archdiocesan District and the eight Metropolises of the Archdiocese. Since its inception, the National Philoptochos has raised over $2.7 million for the Children’s Medical Fund. Click here to read more…