Full sacramental services are offered to all Orthodox Christians. Contact Father George for scheduling the sacrament before making any other reservations or plans (to be certain that the day and time you prefer is, in fact, available), and for discussion of additional pertinent details.
Hospital and homebound visits
Special prayers before hospitalization, or a hospital visit, or a visit to one who is either temporarily, or permanently, homebound, can be arranged by contacting Father George or the Cathedral Office.
The Church stands ready to assist at a time of loss by offering funeral services for the deceased and counseling for the family to aid with the grieving process. When a loved one passes at home, immediately contact the appropriate emergency services. When a loved one passes in a hospital, or some other medical facility, the attending staff of that facility will handle the necessary medical services. In either case, you will need to decide upon a funeral home and pass this information along to the assisting emergency or medical services. Father may be contacted, as you wish, either by the family or by the funeral home. In either case, he should be notified as soon as possible, both for offering prayers and to coordinate the funeral service and other details, along with the funeral home, with the family. If a “Makaria” (which is a luncheon held in blessed memory of the departed) is desired by the family (and it usually is), it is up to the family to make the necessary arrangements (the Cathedral Office and Philoptochos may be called upon for guidance and assistance).
Memorial services can be provided on the anniversary of the passing of a loved one. For the "Mnimosinon" service, kolyva must be brought to the Cathedral that morning, prior to the start of services (however, kolyva is not needed for the "Trisagion" service). When possible, the family is encouraged to bring Prosforon, wine, and oil for Memorial services. Additional arrangements may be made for a Trisagion service at the Cemetery.
On feast days of patron saints, or other occasions, families and organizations may sponsor an Artoclasia (Blessing of the Five Loaves) for the health of their members. The Loaves, along with wine, oil, and Prosforon, ought to be brought prior to the start of services.
Counseling is available, for individuals, couples or families, in time of need. Contact Father George either for an emergency or to arrange for an appointment.
Holy Confession is one of the most important Sacraments of the Orthodox Church. A private Confession may be arranged through Father George at your convenience.
This training is offered, in a personal setting, for those who are preparing for the Sacrament of Holy Chrismation.
If you have been married in the Orthodox Church, and have since obtained a civil divorce, you must also obtain an Ecclesiastical Divorce (which is granted by the Diocese) to be able to once again participate in the sacramental life of the Church. Contact Father George for counseling in this matter, which is handled in strict confidence.
One should always remember that living the sacramental life of the Church means more than having been Baptized and/or Chrismated as an Orthodox Christian. It means that one participates in prayer and fasting regularly, goes for Holy Confession from time to time, and attends the Divine Liturgy regularly (including regularly receiving Holy Communion). In most cases, individual Orthodox Christians indeed faithfully attempt to live this way. However, there are also certain impediments to receiving the sacraments. Under such cases, one cannot receive Holy Communion; nor can they serve as either a Godparent in a Baptism, or as a Koumbaros in a Wedding; nor - if the matter is not resolved prior to their passing - can they have a priest read a blessing over them when they die. When one is an Orthodox Christian, they are responsible to live as an Orthodox Christian within the sacramental life of the Church. Such impediments include marriage outside of the Orthodox Church, separation (with no intention of reconciliation) or civil divorce of a couple that had been married in the Church, or in some other way living in opposition to the Holy Canons of the Church. Still, in almost every case, there are appropriate ways to return to the sacramental life of the Church. For this reason, Father George should be contacted for appropriate guidance in these circumstances.