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Archons conduct Lenten Retreat at St. Basil's Academy

His Grace, Bishop Savas teaches the importance of studying scripture to Archons and their spouses during the fifth annual Archon Lenten Retreat held at St. Basil's Academy.

"It is how we conduct our lives on this earth, how Christ-like we comport ourselves and how we serve as instruments of Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior that will ultimately determine our salvation. Thus, it is the healthy and meaningful integration of our hectic daily lives into our spiritual lives that really matters," remarks National Commander Anthony Limberakis in his January announcement letter regarding the Archon Lenten Retreat.

This year marked the fifth annual retreat which focused on "Spiritual Renewal" and provided Archons and their spouses an opportunity to study in greater detail the theological meaning of Holy Scripture and to participate in discussion with retreat-master, His Grace Bishop Savas of Troas, chancellor of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese in America.

The retreat, organized by the Spirituality Committee of the National Council of The Order of Saint Andrew, was held on April 11-12, 2008, at St. Basil's Academy in Garrison, NY. Serving as a philanthropic center for the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese, the academy provides a home for children in need and provides a loving Christian environment, where resident children are nurtured into adulthood.
 

Retreat participants stand outside St. Basil's Chapel following a morning prayer service.

The retreat began Friday evening with introductions in St. Basil's Chapel by Fr. Constantine Sitaras, executive director of the Academy, who provided a general history and overview of the program that the academy offers its youth. An Akathist service to the Most Holy Theotokos was later celebrated by Bishop Savas. A lenten meal followed served by the children of the academy. Dr. Limberakis later introduced His Grace who offered introductory remarks and provided an overview of the retreat itinerary.

On Saturday morning, a morning prayer service was celebrated by retreat participants in the chapel followed by breakfast. All participants received the newest edition of The Orthodox Study Bible and His Grace lectured on the remaining time in Great Lent, beginning with Lazarus Saturday through Holy Week and into Resurrection of Our Lord. He emphasized in detail the relationship and unique perspectives each of the Evangelists wrote and how to take the lessons learned from this into our own daily spiritual lives.

Archon James Speros, chairman of the Spirituality Committee and coordinator of the retreat, concluded by thanking all Archon participants who gathered saying, "The beautiful facilities of the St. Basil Academy provided the perfect environment for our retreat. We are very grateful to His Grace, Bishop Savas for serving as our retreat master and to Fr. Constantine Sitaras and children of St. Basil's for their hospitality during our time gathered here together. Let us take what we have learned here this weekend and apply it in our own lives, our parishes, and most importantly, in service to Christ."

The retreat concluded with an evening prayer service.

Complete coverage is available in the photo gallery on www.archons.org/photo-gallery.