Ukrainian priest adopts 25 children, creates center for orphans at his church

Odessa, May 24, 2021

Photo: Facebook Photo: Facebook     

A priest of the Odessa Diocese of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church and his wife have organized an Orthodox children’s center at their church, where 28 children are currently being raised.

At first, Fr. John Goria of the Joy of All Who Sorrow Church and his matushka dreamed of creating an Orthodox kindergarten, but one day, after three young orphans came to the church asking for food, he realized he needed to do more.

Today the children are fed and clothed, and they left, but “what’s next?” Fr. John said in a video on the Vesti Odessa YouTube channel. Thus, he conceived of the idea to build an Orthodox children’s center at his church.

And of the 28 children at the center, 25 of them have been adopted by Fr. John. The adoption process is currently under way for two more children, aged 10 months and 1.5 years.

A Convent of Sts. Martha and Mary was also founded at the Church of the Joy of All Who Sorrow, where the Sisters of Mercy are engaged in charitable and missionary work. For more than 18 years, the parish has operated a dining hall for the homeless, feeding more than 200 people a day. There is also a Sunday School and a large library of spiritual literature.

Fr. John has also been celebrating memorial services for the homeless for more than 10 years.

“Christ and many saints have shown us the way. I would like not only for bishops and priests to help people in need, but everyone. This path is very difficult, but it can be overcome with God’s help. The main thing is to ask God for help. After all, if the Lord is in the first place, then everything else will be in its place. Our motto is the words of the apostle: Be not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord (Rom. 12:11),” Fr. John concluded.

In September, Matushka Maria Lvova-Belova, the mother of 17 children, head of several social and Church projects, and head of the Penza Diocese’s Department for Assistance to People with Disabilities, was honored as a “Leader of Russia.”

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Editor5/28/2021 6:30 pm
For those wishing to contact Fr. John, you can try opening the Telegram page for his church and leaving a message. The orphanage is on Vkontakte and Youtube. Please see the links at the bottom of this page: Whether or not he knows other languages we don't know, but he could have your inquiries translated.
Evangelia Dimitriou5/27/2021 11:11 pm
Good evening from Paris. I would also like to contact Fr John, could you please advise me on how I can get in touch with him and if he speaks English Greek or French? With love in Christ, Evangelia
oscar ricor5/24/2021 8:25 pm
Good afternoon from Alicante. Spain, could you please advise me how can I contact the father by email or facebook? does he speak english? thank you very much in anticipation. Oscar
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