"And they devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers." - Acts 2:42
In our parish we strive to grow in our faith by offering ourselves in the following areas of church life and fellowship with those in the community:
ALTAR SERVERS, boys who are seven years and older may serve and have the holy responsibilities of tending to the needs of the liturgical services.
BELL RINGERS are an integral part of liturgical services and can be heard before, during and after services. Practice is needed to be a skilled bell ringer.
CHOIR, the choir sings at three weekly services as well as at all other services such as the Twelve Great Feasts days of the year, weddings and funeral services. Singing hymns of the Church is a beautiful offering and something heavenly, as Saint John Chrysostom writes, "A holy hymn gives birth to piety of soul, creates a good conscience, and is accepted by God in the treasuries of Heaven."
PHOSPHORA BAKERS provide the liturgical bread (phosphora) for all Divine Liturgies, as well as special bread for festal occasions such as Pascha and Great Feasts. Bread is baked weekly and is made with prayer and great attention to detail.
READERS of the Church function officially in conjunction with the Priest and the Choir at all liturgical services. There is no service which does not involve the Reader in some way, tonsured Readers are chosen from among capable men who prepared the readings (other than the Gospel), the prokeimena and alleluia verses.
EDUCATION AND FELLOWSHIP
ADULT EDUCATION classes are offered on various occasions, often Wednesday nights following Vespers and Saturdays before Great Vespers. See the Calendar for the current schedule of classes.
BOOKSTORE, Ascension Books has served many purposes in our first 11 years, namely it established a presence in the I'On community town square and welcomed visitors to the Church. With further development, it has the potential to be a stand-alone bookstore, coffee shop and meeting place for the community-at-large.
CHURCH SCHOOL meets on Sundays following the Divine Liturgy for the youngest First Graders to the oldest of High School children.
COFFEE HOUR, in the days of the early church a feast called Agape would follow the Eucharistic gathering ... in our day coffee hour is this feast and cherished fellowship together after Sunday Liturgy. All are welcome to share in the Agape meal provided by parishioners and enjoy what is "much more than coffee and usually more than an hour"! For parish members please click here to sign-up for a coffee hour team, or, to request a current schedule. As a reminder, everyone brings a dish to share on Sundays and our coffee hour teams take care of set-up and clean-up for the day.
COMMUNITY EVENTS & CONCERTS are held periodically at Holy Ascension and offered free to the public. In the past groups such as Lyra Vocal Ensemble from St. Petersburg, Russia have performed for enthusiastic crowds and special guest Authors and iconographers have given enlightening retreats and seminars on an array of topics. Please check our Calendar page periodically to see what we have coming up!
LIBRARY, a growing library of books are available for check-out to read and return for others to use. The library is located in the parish hall.
MISSIONS, Holy Ascension supports the missionary efforts around the world through the work of Orthodox Christian Mission Center (OCMC) and other missionaries. There are a number of missionaries and missionary families we pray for on an ongoing basis, more information about OCMC information can be found in the parish hall or please click here.
ORTHODOX CHRISTIAN FELLOWSHIP (OCF) is a national collegiate ministry program with local chapters throughout the United States. The Charleston OCF is a group open to 18-26 year old college students in the surrounding area interested in learning and growing together in Christ. Current weekly meetings are Mondays, 6:30-8:00 PM at the Citadel campus in the Jenkins Building - Room 104. The ministry is spear-headed by Holy Ascension, and shared with Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church.
OUTREACH, throughout the year parishioners give to the needs of various ministries including East Cooper Community Outreach (ECCO) for food, clothing and other types of assistance including school supplies for children, and, the Florence Crittenton Home for pregnant, unwed teenagers.