The First Saturday Series will begin on Saturday, October 6, 2012 at 5:00-6:30 p.m. in the Kindred Spirits classroom at First Baptist Church on Green Street. The Great Vespers service, in which thanksgiving and supplication are offered to God as day fades to evening, will begin the gathering. A lecture by Fr. Thomas Alessandroni entitled “Christ the Physician: The Church as Spiritual Hospital” will follow.
Fr. Thomas is an Orthodox Christian priest from Saint Mary of Egypt Orthodox Church in Norcross. He is currently serving the Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Mission in Gainesville. Fr. Thomas is a mental health professional, and maintains a Christian marriage and family counseling practice.
The second lecture is on November 3rd, 2012 at 6:30-8:00 p.m. in the meeting room at the Family Life Center where we normally hold our Sunday services. Following Vespers, “From Pentecostal Pastor to Orthodox Priest: Why Did You Become Orthodox?” will be presented by Fr. Barnabas Powell.
Fr. Barnabas is the senior pastor of Saints Raphael, Nicholas, and Irene Greek Orthodox Church in Cumming. Raised in a small Pentecostal church, he grew up to establish and pastor an Evangelical church in Atlanta. He was also involved with Evangelical Christian media, serving with Dr. Charles Stanley’s In Touch Ministries, and with Dr. Michael Youssef’s Leading The Way Ministries. Fr. Barnabas entered the Orthodox Church in November, 2001. He joined the staff of Orthodox Christian Network in 2003, and now serves as the director of development for media outreach. Fr. Barnabas comments on his interesting spiritual journey, “While the journey has been long, and sometimes difficult, it has been worth it all. As Philip said to Nathaniel: ‘Come and see!’”
The final lecture of the 2012 series will be presented on December 1st, 2012. This event will also be in the Family Life Center from 6:30-8:00 p.m. At the conclusion of the Vespers service, Fr. Paul Burholt will present “Who Is Jesus Christ?”
Fr. Paul is an Orthodox priest and psychotherapist. Originally from England, Fr. Paul has lived and worked in the USA for over twenty years. He and his wife have recently moved to Decatur from Hawaii, where he provided counseling for active duty military personnel with marriage problems and PTSD issues. Fr. Paul and his wife are part of the Orthodox parish of Saint Mary of Egypt in Norcross.
Each event in the First Saturday Series will conclude with a question-answer period and light refreshments. All services and lectures are free and open to the public.