New Romanian Orthodox mission founded in Canada

Oakville, Ontario, Canada, April 10, 2024

Photo: Basilica News Agency Photo: Basilica News Agency     

A new Romanian Orthodox mission in Ontario, Canada, held its first service on Saturday, April 6.

His Grace Bishop Ioan Casian of Canada blessed the place of worship for the new mission in Oakville with holy water and then served a memorial service for the reposed. He had previously consecrated the antimens to be placed on the mission’s altar on April at the Cathedral in Saint-Hubert, Quebec, the Romanian Orthodox Diocese of Canada reports.

The community is named in honor of Sts. Constantine and Helen and Paisius (Velichkovsky) of Neamţ.

Several faithful attended the mission’s first service, and the bishop was joined by the rector Fr. Marian Costinel Iacobut and diocesan inspector Fr. Petre Busuioc.

The day then continued with an agape meal prepared by the women of the parish.

The next day, Bp. Ioan Casian celebrated the mission’s first Liturgy on the Sunday of the Cross. In his homily, he reflected on the connection between the Cross and the founding of a new mission:

It is important to think that this new mission is founded on the 3rd Sunday of Great Lent, called of the Holy Cross. The Cross for us is the symbol of our faith because by signing ourselves with it we confess what we believe—that is, the suffering, death and Resurrection of Christ, the Son of God for us and for our salvation. This Sunday being placed in the middle of Great Lent, it represents the tree of the knowledge of good and evil in Paradise which shows us that the way to meeting God in His Resurrection celebrated on Pascha night can only be done through the Cross of Christ. Through the Cross we glimpse the Resurrection of Christ.

The Cross also represents the place where Christ was crucified. For us, marking with the sign of the holy Cross means uniting and participating by faith in the suffering of Christ who gave us healing and salvation. Man, as the words of today’s Gospel say, in order to follow Christ must renounce to himself, i.e. his passions and desires, he must take up his cross, i.e. let himself be permeated by virtues, cleansing himself from sin, and he must to follow Christ, that is, to follow the path of union with God and deification.

The Church is the place where man learns this work. It is the place where God gave him the means to do this—the Holy Liturgy, the Holy Sacraments and the other sanctifying and transfiguring blessings of the Church. If Christ fulfilled everything from this point of view, man remains free to decide to participate in this work or not.

The mission started today is a new place where people hears God’s word and can enter into God’s work of salvation.

Bp. Ioan Casian presented the new mission with an icon of the Theotokos, and an historical icon donated by a member of the mission was consecrated.

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