Supported by the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America
Any addiction carries a societal weight that shames its conquered people into a dark silence. The term ‘addict’ is isolating, not only for the intended, but also for those around them. It discourages their family and friends from trying to understand the deeply rooted dysfunction. It carries with it a destructive stigma that subjectively determines the addict to only have him or herself to blame. The term leaves the suffering population feeling unworthy of care and their would-be supporters believing that they have no choice but to disband their loved one. Ultimately, what began as a sickness of the body or mind, transforms into a sickness of the whole self that affects all those around the afflicted.
Especially in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, many of us in the Orthodox Christian community have personal experiences, live with family members, or are close to someone who is currently suffering from the tragic effects of addiction. The nation has been and continues to be plagued by a variety of addictions, several of which have proven to be more deadly than others. Whether it is illicit substances, prescription drugs, alcohol, nicotine, other addictive, or destructive behaviors (such as gambling, internet abuses, etc.), as parents, pastors, relatives, or friends of addicted individuals, we are left with two choices: Neglect it or address it.
There is no “middle-ground” with this type of destructive existence. Eventually we are faced with the harsh reality that addiction does not go away, it gets worse and will consume the lives of both the addicted and the people who love them. Incarceration, hospitalization, detoxification, rehab, crime, deception, lying, and cheating are all ‘partners’ of the addicted personality. By the current standard of “treatment”, the addicted and those who love them are engaged in a seemingly endless cycle that irregularly results in success.
Amidst all of this, people...our people, are searching for a solution. They are seeking something, or someone, to listen to their cries, receive them openly, and begin the process of finding a light in the darkness of addiction. Saint Anastasia's Fellowship is seeking to fill what can be acknowledged as a cosmic need, and while it certainly does not satisfy the fullness of what is needed, the hope is that this will be a start.
Below all the upcoming dates, times, and locations for Saint Anastasia's Fellowship - for any further inquiries, please contact our group leader, Father Nikolas Delaveris (email@example.com) - may the intercessions of Saint Anastasia the Pharmacologist be with all who are in need!
Thursday, October 5 – Prophet Elias Greek Orthodox Church, Yonkers - NY @ 7pm – Addictions Support Group (in the Community Center) @ 8:15pm – Paraklesis to Saint Anastasia the Pharmacologist (in the Church)
Thursday, October 19 – Prophet Elias Greek Orthodox Church, Yonkers - NY @ 7pm – Addictions Support Group (in the Community Center) @ 8:15pm – Paraklesis to Saint Anastasia the Pharmacologist (in the Church)
TBD – Greek Orthodox Church of the Assumption, Port Jefferson - NY @ 6:30pm – Paraklesis to Saint Anastasia the Pharmacologist (in the Church) @ 7:30pm – Addictions Support Group (in the Church)
TBD – Archangels Greek Orthodox Church, Stamford - CT @ 7pm – Addictions Support Group (in the Conference Room) @ 8:15pm – Paraklesis to Saint Anastasia the Pharmacologist (in the Church)