Efstratios Magoulias, or Yianni as his friends call him, is a native of the Annunciation parish in Modesto, California. Having completed his bachelors in Classics (with an emphasis in ancient Greek culture) at UC Santa Barbara, he is currently a 4th year Master of Divinity seminarian candidate at Hellenic College Holy Cross, Greek Orthodox School of Theology. Yianni loves sharing what makes him smile, in the hope it too makes others smile. Throughout the St. Helen's Pilgrimage, Yianni will be writing and reflecting on his experiences with various churches, monasteries, and adventures with his fellow schoolmates. Yianni hopes all of the iPilgrims at home following along will also have the opportunity to one day visit the Holy Land, Constantinople, and Greece in order to strengthen and experience their faith in Jesus Christ, first hand.
The OCN is pleased to share with you written excerpts and photos from the 2017 St. Helen’s Pilgrimage of the Hellenic College Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology. The students started their pilgrimage on May 21st and will return to Boston on June 26th. This is a wonderful opportunity for the students and we look forward to learning about their experiences.
Our final stop of day five took us about two hours outside of Jerusalem to Tiberius. Near the Sea of Galilee, we pulled up to a church with 12 crosses, one symbolizing each apostle. The church was dedicated to the Apostles, who were called out from Capernaum, some even from the very sea we were looking at. The church was filled with iconography of the life of Christ, as well as many unique icons, like icons depicting how Christ called each of the four evangelists, as well as an icon of the Mystical Supper, showing the sinful woman anointing Jesus, while Judas scolds her, asking why wasn’t this money given to the poor. It was also on this same Sea that Christ appeared to His disciples after His Resurrection, ordering them to cast their nets to the right side of the boat, in which they caught a multitude of fish, in where he sat and ate with them. We reflected on these events, which were especially close to us, being that all of us are seminarians and are about to go out into parishes to preach and teach Christ, whether as priests, pastoral assistants, youth directors, or as active lay members and Orthodox Christians.
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