February 1, 2006
Speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into Christ. (Ephesians 4:15)
Beloved Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
It is with great joy that I invite and welcome your participation in the 38th Biennial Clergy-Laity Congress of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America to be convened July 15-21, of Detroit and His Eminence Metropolitan Nicholas for hosting this historic meeting. Our Clergy-Laity Congress is a vital part of our identity and mission as the Greek Orthodox Church in America, and so it is essential that all of our parishes be represented when we gather this summer. This will be a unique time and opportunity for prayer, fellowship, and fruitful discussion in addressing the crucial issues and needs in the life and ministry of our Church.
We have chosen as our Congress theme Sharing the Truth of the Gospel and the Love of Christ. This theme directs our minds, hearts, and preparations for the Congress to the essence of our sacred vocation in this world. It is our calling as Orthodox Christians and as parishes to share the truth that illuminates the path of salvation so that all may know and receive the gift of life offered by our Lord. This sharing of truth is first and foremost an act of love. A loving God has extended His inexhaustible grace to us, and He calls us to share this love with each and every person, to follow the example of Christ and share it in a sincere, sacrificial, and holy way that seeks only the spiritual well-being and eternal salvation of others. As we share truth and love, we will build up the Church, the Body of Christ, growing together in Him and into His heavenly kingdom.
In the coming months we will give more attention to this theme so that we may prepare ourselves spiritually for the Clergy-Laity Congress. As you plan your participation, you will be receiving additional information on the program, organizational events, educational sessions, and of Congress participants. I ask that you join with me in prayer as we loo, forward to our Biennial Clergy-Laity Congress. Together as Greek Orthodox faithful, we must acknowledge by our in being together in one mind, one body, and one heart, we manifest our unyielding commitment to Christ and strengthen our resolve to share the truth of the Gospel and His love in all that we do.
With my prayers and best wishes for yoru sacred diakonia, I remain,
With paternal love in Christ,
+ Archbishop Demetrios