PHILADELPHIA: The Philadelphia Area Sunday Schools representing the six Indian Orthodox Churches of the Greater Philadelphia Area jointly conducted OVBS from August 2to 4, 2012 at St. Thomas Indian Orthodox Church of Philadelphia.
This year, the Philadelphia OVBS had 258 registered students supported by 70 volunteers for 3 days of learning, fellowship, and fun
The theme of the OVBS 2012 was “We Are One in Christ”
Each day began with a general session for Morning Prayer and a devotional address. Thereafter, Philadelphia’s immensely talented MGOCSM music team led the children in action songs and a specially presented puppet show. The students were separated into 15 classes across 5 different grade levels led by at least 2 volunteer teachers per class. Enthusiastic volunteers also led the students in games as well as arts and crafts and a fully staffed kitchen provided Lenten foods for all participants.
The final day’s festivities included a moon bounce for the smaller children, fresh cotton candy, and the final talent show and cultural program. At the final cultural program, $3,000 raised over the course of the 3 days was given to St. Paul’s Bala Bhavan, Puthuppady, Kozhikode.
Steve Kurian and Ancy Abraham were the Philadelphia Area OVBS Coordinators- 2012
All 6 area parishes of Philadelphia area joined together to make their children a few memorable days in their life. Participating parishes included St. Mary’s Orthodox Cathedral (Vicar: Very Rev. Fr. Johnson Cor Episcopa, Asst. Vicar Rev. Fr. Aju Mathews), St. Thomas Indian Orthodox Church (Vicar: Rev. Fr. M. K. Kuriakose, Asst. Vicar Rev. Fr. Gheevarghese John), St. Gregorios Malankara Orthodox Church (Vicar: Rev. Fr. Shibu V. Mathai), St. John’s Indian Orthodox Church (Vicar. Rev. Fr. Siby Kuriakose), St. Thomas Malankara Orthodox Church (Vicar: Rev. Fr. K.K. John) and St. Mary’s Orthodox Church (Vicar: Rev. Fr. K.M. Samuel).
Next year’s joint OVBS is scheduled for August 15th through 17th, 2013.