Pastoral Letters

Pastoral Message May 26, 2024

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Christ is Risen!

Truly He is Risen!

I trust and pray that you and your families are well. We are heading into the summer months with a full head of steam, and the activities that will be taking place at St. Anna’s in the coming months are quite staggering. We will soon be ending our Sunday School Year, our annual Golf Tournament will take place, our Philoptochos will host their Membership Tea (replace tea with margarita’s), we have a full calendar of Sacraments to be celebrated, I will be attending our Metropolis Summer Camp with some of our youth, our new St. Anna Retreat at 8,000 Feet is on the calendar, the Bi-Annual National Clergy/Laity Congress is around the corner, and we haven’t even mentioned the Feasts of Ascension or Pentecost, yet! I am positive that I am forgetting something.

But there is something else I am certainly not forgetting, that is the biggest, singularly important, and the most historically significant event of the summer: the archepastoral visit to St. Anna’s by His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros of America during the weekend of July 13-14, 2024. His Eminence is coming for what is known in Greek as the Thyranoixia – or the formal opening of the doors of a new church. I hope that we can all appreciate the magnitude of His Eminence’s desire to be with us as we finally complete our two-year long construction efforts. It is not standard practice for the spiritual leader of our National Church to conduct such services. Sandy, Utah may be the center of our spiritual lives, but it’s not exactly center stage throughout America.

But we must always remember our own history: when St. Anna’s was formally recognized as a parish of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, it was the newly installed Archbishop Elpidophoros who granted what was his first Charter. We were the first parish he formally established. And when he was here in 2021 to visit our parish on the eve of our Parish Feast Day, he promised to come back to the church, once completed, and open our doors. We accomplished our goals, we honored our promises, and we built our church. And he, honoring his promise to us, is returning to finish what we started. God is so good. I am so incredibly humbled by the fact that all of this is taking place and becoming a reality. It is so generous of His Eminence to take the time to be with us.

Let us also celebrate that this will be the first opportunity for us to welcome our new, local hierarch, His Eminence Metropolitan Constantine of Denver, who will be coming with the Archbishop. And friend to our St. Anna community, His Grace Bishop Spyridon of Amastris is also expected to participate. Three Bishops – Wow!

The details of the weekend’s events are quickly forming and will be communicated them to you very soon. Let us give thanks to our loving God, Who has made all these things possible, and let me give thanks to you, the visionary and generous parishioners of St. Anna’s, who have worked tirelessly for all that we enjoy. 

Quite a summer, right?!?

With Love in our Risen Lord,

Fr. Anthony Savas