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Pastoral Letter - Volunteering for Ministries

St. Andrew Orthodox church is blessed with many ministries where we serve our parish family, local community and beyond.  St. Andrew ministries provide us with an opportunity to pledge our time and talent as expressions of our faith in God, and our gratitude for all He has done for us.  St. Andrew ministries also provide us with a way to fulfill a multitude of scriptural commands admonishing us to bear fruit, feed the hungry, help the sick, use our spiritual gifts to edify the Body of Christ…  For as the scriptures tell us, Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works and glorify your Father who is in heaven (St. Matthew 5:16). To that end, we find sage direction in the words of St. Tikhon who said in his farewell address to his people in America as he prepared to return to Russia:

“The Light of Orthodoxy is not lit for a small circle of people. . .it is our obligation to share our spiritual treasures, our truth, our light, and our joy with those who do not have these gifts. This duty lies not only on pastors and missionaries, but also on lay people, for the Church of Christ, in the wise comparison of St. Paul, is a body, and in the life of the body every member takes part.”

Let us all bear this yoke of responsibility to use our God-given talents for His Glory. The St. Andrew Ministry programs can provide you with the opportunity to contribute by using your talents. Importantly, a first step in ensuring the success of each ministry outreach or activity is to commit our ministries to prayer and to seek the blessings of God and of our pastor. In this way all may be done in harmony in the Church and to the glory of our Savior Jesus Christ.

It is our Ministry Program’s goal that every member of the church body, from our children to our grandparents, finds a ministry in which to participate. Below, we have listed a brief description of each ministry within our parish. As you peruse this list, seek to find those places where your talents can best be used. Then call or e-mail the parish office to volunteer so that your “light may shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works and glorify your Father who is in heaven.”

 Father Josiah

St. Andrew Ministries


Altar Server:  Serve the needs of the Altar under the direction of the clergy. 

Bell Ringer:  Ring the church bells for services at appropriate times and in a proscribed manner. 

Candle Care and Candle area:  Help put out candles after church services; keep sand clean by removing candle drips and spent candle nubs;  clean fallen sand from candle counter and floor, refresh spent seven-day candles. 

Chanter: Chant liturgical hymnody during church services following proscribed tradition and convention. 

Choir:  Choir members sing hymnody under the direction of the choir leader during Liturgy, weddings and funerals. 

Icons – Cleaning:  Clean glass coverings over icons and remove smudges left by people reverencing the icons. 

Prosphora Baker:  Bake prosphora, the bread used for communion.  Make sure prosphora is delivered for Liturgy in a timely manner. Training is needed to properly and prayerfully bake the prosphora. 

Reader: Read appointed scriptures and other texts according to the Liturgical calendar under the direction of the clergy during church services.

Usher:  Greet people as they enter the church for Liturgy;  pass out Sunday bulletins; help direct the movement of people for communion, processions and blessing lines; take up offering; help keep order and propriety during services; assist people in need.

Temple Flower Decorations:  Assist in acquiring and arranging flowers in the temple for major feasts and other times flowers are needed to beautify the temple and adorn icons. 



Adult Catechism: Prepare and conduct classes for catechumens on Sunday mornings when they are dismissed with prayer following the homily. Catechists serve on a rotation basis with other teachers. 

Sunday School:  Serve as Sunday School Director, teacher or assistant; provide snacks for students; provide classroom materials for students. 

Teen SOYO:  Serve as a youth leader; assist youth leaders; go on youth outings as a supervisory adult; provide entertainment/activities for youth. 



Help with regular preventative maintenance, repairs and improvements – Carpentry, electrical, handyman repairs/maintenance, HVAC, janitorial, painting, plumbing and roofing.



Plant Care: Planting, pruning, weeding, mulching.

Irrigation: Monitor the irrigation system and look for stressed plants and other indications that an irrigation section needs repair.  Repair drip line, bubbler heads and emitters as needed.

Grounds Pickup/Cleaning: Pick up trash; clean drains and gutters; clean dirt from walkways and the terrace; clean temple and hall walls (remove cobwebs and dirt).



Bereavement:  Provide support and care for  the bereaved.

Burial Society:  Pray for and with people and read scripture, if they are in the process of being in repose; Assist in preparing loved ones for burial; assist in making funeral and burial arrangements; pray for those in repose during their preparation for burial; visit cemeteries and pray for the reposed.

Homeless Meals:  Help provide meals for the Hulen Homeless Shelter. Prepare and serve meals to shelter residents.  Currently meals are served each Saturday morning.  Meal prep is 5:00am and we serve the meal at 6am.

Hospice: Provide support for those moving to their repose and assist family

Orthodox Christians for Life:  Participate in Walk for Life; attend pro-life events; assist pro-life organizations; engage in political activity designed to abolish legalized abortion.

Prayer Ministry: Receive prayer requests from the prayer ministry leader and lift the requests up in prayer.

Visitation and Care for the Elderly and Infirm: Visit people who are sick or shut-ins; provide supportive services:  Transportation to appointments, help getting groceries or other needs they are unable to perform.  Make wellness check calls. 



Agape Hour:  Bring food for the Agape Hour meal, in coordination with the Agape Meal Captains (families are scheduled on a rotation basis and bring food about once every three months.)  Assistance in knowing how much to bring, or recipes for large numbers of people are available. All families should consider participating in this important ministry. 

Agape Hour VIP Server: Serve food plates to elderly and infirm in the fellowship hall during Agape Hour. 

Family Night Meal:  Assist in preparing and serving meals in conjunction with the St. John Chrysostom Catechetical School on Wednesday evenings. 

Meals for the Sick & New Mothers:  Cook meals and arrange for delivery to the families.

Sweeter Side:  Prepare and serve a meal to the seniors that come to the hall for fellowship and activities once a month.  This is a rotation service shared with other volunteers—service would be once every few months.   



Kidz Klub:  Help with childcare during Wednesday night lecture series.  Caregivers serve on rotating nights. 

Kat Klub:  Help with childcare during seasonal Saturday afternoon catechesis.  These are eight classes preceding the Nativity, and eight classes preceding Pascha. 



Bookstore: Assist customers in the bookstore and process sales transactions following Liturgy. Help with inventory and care of bookstore.

Docent:  Lead tours of the temple following a developed and pastorally approved script.      Docents provide information about our temple’s architecture, Orthodoxy and the history of St. Andrew.  (Approval and training is required to conduct temple tours)

Visitor Welcoming:  Sit at the Welcoming Table on the temple terrace before Liturgy and greet visitors;  offer visitors a form to fill out; provide information about the church and Orthodoxy; invite the visitors to the Agape Meal; sit with visitors at the Agape Meal and help them to feel welcome.



Fundraising:  Participate in fundraising event, activity planning and management; event leader; event worker.

Newsletter:  Assist the editor with creating and publishing the parish newsletter: News gathering; layout; graphic design; write news articles; photography; monitor Diocese and Archdiocese sites for news.

Parish Council: Be willing to serve on the Parish Council.  This is an elected position.  Members are nominated, nominations are approved by the priest and then the parish council members are elected in an annual parish meeting. 

Saint Andrew Orthodox Church
4700 Canyon Crest Drive
Riverside, CA 92507

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