Dear Faithful Friends,
In the early 2000s I met Fr. Stephen Powley from Orthodox Christian Prison Ministry at a church college event and later we served together at the Antiochian Village Adventure camp. Hearing his incredible stories of prison ministry, my eyes were opened to the reality of Matthew 25:36, “I was in prison and you came to Me.” Until that time, I was always confused by this passage. I never knew anyone in prison, and being a naive young adult, I thought I never would.
Fast-forward to a couple years ago and I heard a familiar voice on Ancient Faith Radio. It was Fr. Stephen, again talking about the importance of Matthew 25:36. He suggested that a monthly donation of $25.36, is a beautiful way to not only support prison ministry, but to also remember this verse each month and to pray for our brothers and sisters in prison. Liking round numbers my family and I chose a different amount to give each month, but the purpose remained the same.
Our monthly Matthew 25:36 Fellowship gift to Orthodox Christian Prison Ministry is included in our monthly tithe. Under the direction of our spiritual fathers, most of our tithe goes to our parish community. But thankfully, we are also able to support some of the other important charitable ministries of our Church. By making smaller, regular donations it is possible to consistently spread our treasure to support Christian philanthropy.
Having served as church treasurer, I know that monthly giving to OCPM is only too important. It helps them project revenue and cash flow and maintain good administration. Regular donations are the solid base of a healthy operating budget. From this foundation we look forward to seeing OCPM not only continue their good work but also grow in the years to come.
Dn. Noah Papas
Deacon Noah serves at St. George Antiochian Orthodox Cathedral in Pittsburgh, PA where he lives with his wife Beth Ann and two young children Anthony (5) and Marina (3).