Javascript Menu by

HELP NEEDED - Matushka Mary Perez - 08/27/16

Matushka Mary Perez was recently diagnosed with stage 4 metastatic lung cancer after a year of suffering from recurring pneumonia, bronchitis, chronic cough, several infections, wheezing and fatigue. While the diagnosis does explain her prolonged illness, it came as a shock to her family and friends.

She and her husband, Fr. Dimitri Perez, serve our mission parish in Vancouver, WA called Holy Apostles. For eleven years, Matushka Mary has been helping her husband in his ministry, and has been doing a lot of work herself in the church community and beyond.

Matushka Mary is a Licensed Psychologist Associate, specializing in work with children, teens and their families and has a private practice which helps supplement income to support her family, which includes their precious and only son Benjamin.

As of this week, Matushka Mary has temporarily suspended her private practice due to her recent diagnosis, in order to seek treatment and work toward healing.  Because the family relies heavily on her income for financial support, we are asking for your generous donation in support of her medical treatment and her family's needs, which will be both numerous and extensive due to insurance not covering all of these needed treatments.

Please help by making a donation:

"Serv-X-Treme" Experience - 08/27/16

Thecla Shubert, of Holy Theophany in Colorado Springs, recently served as a “diocesan representative” for this national youth training event of IOCC. The following is her reflection on the experience:

Christ has called us all to service. As Christ says, “For I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took me in.” (Mat. 25:35) In this modern time it is easier than ever to serve. Not only do cities have soup kitchens and food pantries, school organize donations drive and fundraisers, but with a simple click of a button you can send money to help people on the other side of the world. It’s wonderful that as a society we have united in this dedication to serve, but as Christians, we are called to take this a step further. We are called to be Christlike in our service. I recently had the opportunity to attend the International Orthodox Christian Charities’ (IOCC) “Serv-x-treme” youth leadership and service conference. There, twenty six youth attended from across the nation, and spent the week serving at local organizations in the twin cities, and discussing what it means to serve in a Christlike manner. We talked about the three tiers of Christlike service; building personal faith, knowing those you serve, and putting God at the head of all your service.

Dormition in Calistoga - 08/18/16

Christians celebrate the dormition ("falling asleep") of the Virgin Mary on August 15. In the Western Christian world, this feast is commonly known as the Assumption of the Virgin Mary, and thus, Holy Assumption Monastery celebrates its "altar feast" every year in the middle of August.  Mother Melania and the sisters of the Monastery welcomed His Eminence, Archbishop Benjamin, area clergy, and faithful to the solemn and joyful celebration of this important feast in the life of the Church.

RMOYC '16 - Through the Eyes of a Parent - 08/18/16

I was drawn to this year’s RMOYC [Rocky Mountain Orthodox Youth Camp] because I heard of the overwhelming positive effect it had on youth who attended in year’s past. This was my first time attending, as I wanted to accompany my son in his first camp experience.

RMOYC started by being surrounded by “Orthodoxy” - where it was acceptable to talk about God’s love to your friends and building friendships where sharing faith is the norm. It continued with the lessons, made alive and practical by the clergy and staff that put together engaging and captivating talks. Last was the “norm” of prayer and services throughout the day. Camp was simply an expression and model how we should live! After camp. We were challenged to make an effort to “take camp home” with us, by keeping the conversations going, praying and giving thanks more regularly throughout the day, and discussing the lessons learned.

REFLECTION - I learned to think about God in the little things - 08/10/16

by Anastazie Jordan

Project Mexico and Saint Innocent’s Orphanage is an Orthodox Christian non-profit organization known for building houses for the families of Rosarito and the surrounding area in Mexico. Land is very expensive in Mexico, and many families do not have the money to construct a permanent home. Project Mexico has been building homes since 1988, and all of the houses are built with donated funds and volunteer labor. A single house takes four days to build, followed by a house blessing at the end. Groups primarily from around the U.S.A. and Canada have built over 300 homes, and, at the end of the build week, they often find that more has changed than just a family getting a home. Project Mexico not only changes the lives of the families it builds for, it also changes the lives of those who go on this incredible mission trip.

Orthodox Alaska Cruise September 2-9! - 06/28/16

With the blessing of His Eminence, Archbishop Benjamin of San Francisco and the West, and the support of Bishop David of the historic diocese of Alaska (who will be on board!), a cruise and conference at sea will be held September 2-9, 2017.

Sailing from Seattle and while exploring Juneau, Sitka, Glacier Bay, and other sites on the Holland America Westerdam, conference participants will attend a wide variety of daily lectures, services and workshops offered by Fr Michael Oleksa, a recognized authority on Alaskan history and spirituality, and Fr Laurent Cleenewerck, Rector of Saint Innocent Church, Eureka, CA, who is also an academic and author.

Detailed information, including rates and agenda, may be found at here (

 Only 50 “seats” are available for this event, and registrations are accepted now on a first-come, first-serve basis.


Bookmark and Share

© Diocese of the West. 1520 Green St, San Francisco, CA 94123; 415-567-WEST(9378)

Powered by Orthodox Web Solutions