Orthodox Church of the Mother of God website - Home page
Welcome to the official website of the
Orthodox Church of the Mother of God,
Joy of all the Sorrowful
We are a growing parish in the Diocese of New York and New Jersey, of the Orthodox Church in America (OCA).
We are in historic Mays Landing, New Jersey, easily reachable near where Route 40 meets Route 50 in Atlantic County.
115 Hudson St.
Mays Landing, New Jersey 08330
Turnersville, NJ 08012
- Category: Worship
Elevation of the Cross
By Fr. Thomas Hopko
The Elevation of the Cross, celebrated on September 14, commemorates the finding of Christ's Cross by Saint Helen, the mother of the Emperor Constantine in the fourth century; and, after it was taken by the Persians, of its recovery by the Emperor Heraclius in the seventh century at which time it was "elevated" in the Church of the Resurrection in Jerusalem. From this latter event the "universal elevation" of the Cross was celebrated annually in all of the churches of the Christian Empire.
The day of the Elevation of the Cross became, as it were, the national holiday of the Eastern Christian Empire similar to the Fourth of July in the United States. The Cross, the official emblem of the Empire which was placed on all public buildings and uniforms, was officially elevated on this day by the bishops and priests. They blessed the four directions of the universe with the Cross, while the faithful repeated the chanting of "Lord have mercy." This ritual is still done in the churches today after the solemn presentation and elevation of the Cross at the end of the Vigil service of the holy day following the Great Doxology of Matins.
- Category: Schedule of Services
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, in person services in our parish have been cut back for now. Fr Matthew sends out reader’s services via email each week to follow at home. In addition, the diocesan web page nynjoca.org/livestream has online services for viewing.
When services are held, they are celebrated with only the allowed number of people in attendance. Please contact Fr Matthew if you wish to attend as part of the restricted number.
(No one else should attend in person.)
- Category: Schedule of Services
THE RE-OPENING OF OUR PARISH
REV MATTHEW SEARFOORCE
Dear Brothers and Sisters, His Eminence Archbishop Michael has Blessed our Plan for the Re-Opening of our Parish for worshipping together as a Parish Family. We are planning to start this Sunday with the celebration of Pentecost! There will be some changes with the way we will be doing things in order to protect ourselves now and for the foreseeable future, as Covid-19 is still a danger to all of us. We are making every attempt to protect our parish family from the virus.
Things that will be different:
- Category: Text of Prayers
Let us pray to the Lord.
Lord, have mercy.
O God Almighty, Lord of heaven and earth, and of all creation visible and invisible, in thine ineffable goodness, look down upon us, thy people gathered in thy Holy Name. Be our helper and defender in this day of affliction. Thou knowest our weakness. Thou hearest our cry in repentance and contrition of heart. O Lord who lovest mankind, deliver us from the impending threat of the Corona Virus. Send thine angel to watch over us and protect us. Grant health and recovery to those suffering from this virus. Guide the hands of physicians and preserve those who are healthy. Enable us to continue to serve our suffering brothers and sisters in peace that together we may glorify thy most honorable and majestic name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, now and ever and unto ages of ages.
- Category: Saints and Icons
(the Icon of the Mother of God "the Joy of All the Sorrowful" is Commemorated on July 23, October 24, and November 19)
About the Patron of our Parish
By Helen Creticos Theodoropoulos
Deep within the heart of the Church, in the place where sorrow and joy meet and where our bitter tears are kissed away by a mother's love, we encounter the Most Holy Mother of God. The Church in its devotion to the Ever-Virgin Mary has always known that she is a mystery and a gift given to us by God. The Theotokos is a mystery that can be experienced and encountered, and yet never explained or described in words of logic and science, and she is a gift that brings radiant joy and comfort in the midst of darkness and need. Through the centuries the Church has expressed its love for her through countless hymns, has praised her in its most exquisite poetry and song, and has portrayed her in its most beautiful and beloved icons. No other saint is the subject of so much devotion, and no other saint has so many miracles attributed him or her.
As the local community of the Church of the Mother of God, this parish, exists for the purpose of worshiping God according to the Holy Scriptures and Tradition of the Holy Orthodox Church, to encourage union with God among the members of the parish, to seek out the lost, the searching, and the un-churched and to strive to bring them into union with the Church, to provide religious education to its members and potential members, provide charitable aid, and to defend, promote, and witness to theOrthodox Christian Faith in southern New Jersey.
This website is a tool to help in this purpose. Primarily to publicize our existence in southern New Jersey, and hopefully, encourage people to "come and see".
The many pages on this website contain information we hope is helpful.
Our Church Building
Our church building, and the services celebrated within it, are from the tradition of the Church, from the vision of St John the Apostle, as well as the Old Testament Temple. The interior of the Orthodox Church buildings are particularly styled to give the experience of the unity of all things in God. They are not constructed to reproduce the upper room of the Last Supper, nor to be simply a meeting hall for people whose life exists solely within the bounds of this earth. The church building itself, is an image of the world.