“Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith” Heb. 12:1-2
In many respects the St. Tikhon Archdiocesan Stewards program has many patrons. Among them those pioneers who brought with them the Holy Orthodox Faith when they settled in this new land. Those who day in, and day out strove to love the Lord their God with all their heart, soul, mind and strength (Lk. 10:27), regardless of their situation, or their challenges. Indeed a cloud of witnesses!
We know some of these patrons very well, and some we know only a little about. But they are many known only to God. Those who have gifted us this Church throughout the years. Whether they were men or women, farmers, or labours, priests or the faithful, converts or cradle Orthodox, they have blessed and interceded before the Lord, that the Saint Tikhon Archdiocesan Stewards program would succeed.
But of these, Saint Tikhon Patriarch of Moscow and Apostle to America, stands as one who gave everything for the Glory of God, even while traveling across this country, visiting tiny communities, and Churches. From the very beginning of this program, his intercessions and prayers have helped further this inisitive for the better part of a decade. More about his life can be read here.
A fellow minister with St. Tikhon is the Blessed Archbishop Arseny (Chahovtsov). Although not formally glorified as a saint, Archbishop Arseny none-the-less is venerated by many of the faithful in the Archdiocese of Canada. His examples of diligence and love, still resonate even seventy years after his death, inspiring the work of STAS committee. More about his life can be read here.
We continue to ask for both St. Tikhon and the Blessed Archbishop Arseny to bless the work of this program, as well ask that they might bless the men and women, who offer to the Lord their support and love through STAS.