St. Aphraim’s Parish Hosts a Successful 49th Archdiocesan Convention
The 49th Annual Archdiocesan Convention, sponsored by St. Aphraim’s Syriac Orthodox Church in Washington DC, was held from Thursday, July 26th through Sunday, July 29th. This was a truly successful event attended by members of both the Eastern and Western Archdioceses.
This year’s convention theme “One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church” rang through every event of the convention weekend. His Eminence Mor Cyril Aphrem Karim along with His Eminence Mor Clemis Eugene Kaplan shared center stage with the honored guest of the convention His Eminence Mor Dionysius Jean Kawak, Archbishop and Patriarchal Office Director, who previously served as pastor of St. Aphraim’s Parish.
The Eastern Delegates meeting covered an inclusive agenda. Chaired by Ben Isik, AEC President, the convention body ratified the amendments to the by-laws, adopted the clergy pension plan and heard reports from Gabriel Bar-Sawme and John Samuel on Youth Program Activities.
Julie Jabaly reported on the 2012 Youth Camp which is presently in session and Linda Khoury gave an update on Sunday school and the curriculum work in progress. Fr. Aziz Hadodo gave the Clergy Council report followed by Dr. George Kiraz and Janine Azar’s presentation on clergy continued education. Sait Samuel, Archdiocese Treasurer, gave the finance report which was a Segway to Ben Isik’s Midland Avenue Finance and Development Report.
Elias Sarkar and Jack Baljy spoke about the Voice of the Archdiocese and its subscription plan along with work on updating the Archdiocese data base. The Parish and Clergy Committee presented the newly fabricated 3 ft. × 3 ft. Archdiocese Logo which will be mounted on each of our church buildings to promote uniformity throughout the Archdiocese.
The General Session included delegates from both the Eastern and Western Archdioceses. Issues common and of interest to both Archdioceses were discussed beginning with the Directory. A need to update all contact information, including e-mail addresses, was heard from everyone. Elias Sarkar presented a white paper on the Restructuring of the Convention. Both Archbishops will appointment a committee to review, evaluate and submit options at the next Convention. Reports on accomplishments and future plans were presented by both Archdiocese and a preview of the 2013, 50th Anniversary Convention was presented.
Patricia Allaf discussed the implementation of the new ceremonial communion booklet and the release of the DVD of the Holy Liturgy. A comprehensive update on the Sunday school curriculum was presented by Linda Khoury and Patricia Allaf and included an introduction of the materials to be released for use in this year’s Sunday school program including Kindergarten and First Grade student workbooks, corresponding teacher’s manuals and a supplemental coloring and activity book.
The entire convention weekend moved quickly filled with enjoyable and educational activities. The Board of Trustees, the Convention Committee along with Very Rev. Raban Fady Abdulahad are to be commended on a job well done.