Holy Trinity Orthodox Church:
What’s Happening January 2023

"Let us not give up the habit of meeting together... Instead, let us encourage each other all the more,"
the earliest Christians said (Hebrews 10:25). So join us for worship and fellowship. To find us, click here: Find HTOC.
For a printer-friendly PDF version of our monthly newsletter, click here: HTOC Newsletter.
For a printer-friendly PDF version of our weekly update, click here: HTOC Weekly Update.

Glory to Jesus Christ! Glory forever!

Holy Trinity Orthodox Church is the little church with a big heart and room for all, where Jesus nourishes modern lives through ancient roots! With our priest Father Alexis Woytek on board and common-sense pandemic precautions in place, we continue to gather safely for Sunday Divine Liturgy at 9:30 a.m. and share groceries with hungry neighbors through our friends at People Helping People in Hernando County.

Theophany: Christ's Baptism and Ours

This month brings us to Theophany (January 6), which recalls the Baptism of Christ Jesus (Matthew 3:13-17).

Why did sinless Jesus, God embodied in human flesh, get baptized, when Saint John the Baptizer called sinners to wash away their sins and clean up their acts? Because "for our sake God made the sinless one into sin, so that in him, we might become the goodness of God" (2 Corinthians 5:21).

By bonding with us sinners in baptism, Jesus turned that washing into a way for us to bond with him: "All of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ" (Galatians 3:27).

Bonding with Jesus in baptism birthed our potential to grow Christlike — a lifelong process. As one insightful Christian noted: "Baptism is a one-time event that takes a lifetime to finish."

Theophany means "the appearing of God." How is God appearing in your own baptized life?

Mark Your Calendar!

Sunday, January 1 · 9:30 a.m. · 9:30 a.m.
Twenty-Ninth Sunday After Pentecost
Circumcision of Christ Jesus
Sunday Before Theophany
Divine Liturgy

Sunday, January 8 · 9:30 a.m.
Thirtieth Sunday After Pentecost
Sunday After Theophany
Sunday Observance of Theophany
Divine Liturgy and Blessing of Water

Sunday, January 15 · 9:30 a.m.
Thirty-First Sunday After Pentecost
Divine Liturgy

Sunday, January 22 · 9:30 a.m.
Thirty-Second Sunday After Pentecost
Divine Liturgy

Sunday, January 29 · 9:30 a.m.
Thirty-Third Sunday After Pentecost
Zacchaeus Sunday
Divine Liturgy


"Rejoice with those who rejoice" (Romans 12:15). Best wishes to our kinfolk in Christ celebrating special milestones this month! Birthdays: Svetlana Palmer (January 1), Michael Narancich (January 8), Joann Kuzmiak (January 21), and David Palmer (January 28). God grant you many years!

"Mourn with those who mourn" (Romans 12:15). Prayerful condolences to the family and friends of our sister in Christ and fellow parishioner Irene Leschak, who died on November 25, 2022. Eternal memory and blessed rest to her!

News and Notes

"The Holy One has anointed you" (1 John 2:20). On Sunday, December 18, 2022, we welcomed Luann Donnelly Willemen into the Orthodox Church through the sacrament of chrismation. God grant her many years in health and salvation!

Thank You! Thanks to all the helping hands on deck and behind the scenes who made Christmas come together for our church family. God bless you richly for so generously putting your time, talent, and treasure at his disposal for the good of his church and the spiritual nurture of your kinfolk in Christ!

Help University of Florida Students to Help Ukraine!

War in Ukraine is still making life a living hell for millions of children, women, and men there while Russia's unprovoked invasion continues to defy God's commandments:Ukraine "Do not murder," "Do not steal," and "Do not crave what belongs to your neighbors" (Exodus 20:13, 20:15, and 20:17).

The University of Florida Ukrainian Student Association (UF USA) — a local group of college students from Ukraine and Ukrainian-Americans — is stepping up to the plate to relieve human suffering in war-torn Ukraine. Their Spring 2022 drive collected tens of tons of food, clothes, and medicine shipped to Ukraine. Their Fall 2022 drive kicked off with an ecumenical prayer vigil in Gainesville, Florida that netted over $1,200 in alms that went toward buying life-saving medical supplies inside Ukraine.

You can join in their From UF to Ukraine Humanitarian Aid Drive by donating through their GoFundMe webpage by clicking on this link: tinyurl.com/uf-to-ukraine.

The next round of donations will buy thermal underwear for Ukraine's first responders through MedGlobal, an international nonprofit partnered with Ukraine's Ministry of Health, so those brave men and women have the gear to survive outside in below-zero winter temperatures while they put out fires, rescue the injured, dig up landmines, and repair broken power grids bombed by Russian missles to deprive Ukrainian civilians of light, heat, and water amid freezing weather.

Every dollar counts: no donation is too large or too small. "Don't forget to do good and share what you have with those in need, for such sacrifices please God" (Hebrews 13:16). Please give today at tinyurl.com/uf-to-ukraine.

Slim Pickings or Bumper Crop?

"Plant few seeds, and you'll get a small crop; plant lots of seeds, and you'll get a big crop." (2 Corinthians 9:6)

Church is like anything else in life: we get out of it what we put into it. When it comes to our life in Christ, do we sow for slim pickings or a bumper crop? Invest in your church’s growth in spirit and numbers by dropping your offerings in the collection plate at church or mailing them — as checks payable to "Holy Trinity Church" (no cash, please!) — to our treasurer: Holy Trinity Orthodox Church, c/o Lydia Pinkowski, 7431 Glasgow Rd, Weeki Wachee FL 34613. Thank you!

Generate Light, Not Heat

"Feed the hungry! Help those in trouble! Then your light will shine in the dark, your darkest hour will be like the noonday sun." (Isaiah 58:10)

If our times of global pandemic and social un-rest seem unduly dark, let’s follow up on God’s rem¬edy for that, voiced through his prophet Isaiah: generate light, not heat, by helping others. Please brighten the lives of hungry local children and grown-ups, in partnership with our friends at People Helping People in Hernando County, by regularly stocking our parish charity bin with nonperishable grocer¬ies for sharing with those in need. Thank you!

Safe Church Regathering: Parish Pandemic Precautions

Keeping our church open amid the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic means we must adjust familiar churchgoing habits for the safety of one and all. Please join us in following these wise and common-sense precautions:

If you are feeling ill, please stay home, follow doctor's orders, and take good care of yourself.

Wearing face masks and using hand sanitizer is recommended and encouraged.

Please practice physical distancing, respect personal space, and ensure safe leeway between each other.

Please do not kiss icons, crosses, or the hands of clergy — until less contagious days return, a simple bow is ample sign of reverence and respect.

Please drop any offerings in the collection plate set in the entryway of the church, so we do not have to pass it hand to hand.

Thank you for doing your part to keep our church experience as safe as possible amid these challenging times. It's simply part of doing what Christ Jesus told us to do: "Love others as much as you love yourself" (Mark 12:31).