Thursday, October 08, 2015

Thanking Clergy

 In honor of Clergy Appreciation Month I wrote the following in gratitude to the many Clergy who were always there for me.  The ones from my childhood to now.  They all have a special place in my heart.   It's like the song, To Sir With Love... How do you thank someone who has taken you from crayon to perfume?   Only prayer can equal the value of gratitude. 

October is Clergy Appreciation Month!
It’s like Father’s Day, but not really.  On Father’s Day we show appreciation for our fathers (and father figures) who have guided and loved us through all our faults and graces.  They love us because of the sincere and intimate relationships we have with them: we come from their gene pool, they encourage us to persevere, or they protect us from the world.  Our Fathers deserve the day of recognition for the sacrifices they make out of love and obligation.
Do we need a Clergy Appreciation Month?  It can be challenging to say “thank you” to clergy because we might not see clergy as people who genuinely love us.  For some people, the fact that the church signs a check for the priest’s salary implies that the priest has to love them.   “It’s their job.”   They have to come to the hospital in the middle of the night. “It’s their job.” they have to listen to our burdens until we find peace.  “It’s their job.” The truth is, the love a priest has for his parishioners is a gift from God.  Most clergy are willing and enthusiastic to go above and beyond the “call of duty” to care for parishioners entrusted to their care.  They respond to a calling from our Creator, not a paycheck.  Their love is genuine, not serviced.  (To keep reading...)

Wednesday, October 07, 2015

There is More Than One Saint John

Did you know there are 46 different Saint Johns?  I recently posted this article on the Orthodox Christian Network:
Recently we were invited to Baby John’s baptism and I was planning to gift an icon of Epiphany.  We always gift an icon of Epiphany for baptisms, if we can.  It’s the icon of St. John the Forerunner and Baptist, baptizing Jesus.
I started to wonder if he was being named after the Baptist or a different John.  You’d be surprised how many Johns there are.  I searched the name “John” on the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America website.  They have a “Search for a Saint” tab.  I found 61 listings! Some were finding and re-finding relics and heads… it seems we lost the head of St. John the Baptist a few times.  Conception and Nativity were included.  Also listed was the Synaxis, the “piggyback” feast, following Epiphany, when most people celebrate his feast.  Finish reading...

Saturday, October 03, 2015

I've Been Pretty Busy

I've been busy since I started working for the Orthodox Christian Network a year ago.  As a result, my personal blog has been neglected.  So tonight, I thought I'd share a bit of what  I've been doing this past week or so. 

Here are a few of my favorite articles on OCN:

My work has kept me from posting my recipes.  I'm still cooking.  I'm just not finding time to blog about it. Here are a few of my favorite recipes for the cooler weather

I'm also sketching. It activates a part in my brain that gives me peace, like prayer, but not the same.

I'm still drawing on lunches.  I hope I always do this.  It's a nice way to communicate with my son.

And I'm still selling cards.  If you are looking for cards, please consider  We'd love to have your business.

Thanks for coming to my page.   -Presvytera Vassi

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

It's NOT too Early for Christmas
We have a lovely selection of Christmas cards.  Designed to remind us that Christmas is a religious holiday, our cards are sure to show your loved ones that you care. 

Parenting Faith

I recently wrote a post for OCN.  It was a reflection of what it's like to be 12 and not connected to the saints, but that eventually, we "get it."  Parents can't give up.  The real endurance is making sure our kids understand that we are committed to actually knowing what's best for them.

This morning, I was in my own sort of deja vu.  It was time to wake up and get ready for church, and I had to wake my sleeping son, who has discovered the pleasure of sleeping in.  It was my turn to inspire a twelve-year-old to honor a saint he didn’t know?

For the full article on OCN, go to: