Pamela Collins is a Board Member of the Orthodox Christian Network. Mrs. Collins and her husband Keith are active members of St. Katherine Greek Orthodox Church in Naples, Florida.
Published with permission of The Greek Orthodox Ladies Philoptochos Society.
“Recently, National Philoptochos President Maria Logus, met a young soldier who had just returned from overseas. After learning about his experiences, she inquired about the needs of active service members.
His response was immediate and simple – prepaid phone cards.
As Veterans Day and the holidays approach, we encourage all chapters and members to reach out to our brave men and women who daily put themselves in harm’s way to preserve the liberties we hold so dear. These men and women are far away from their loved ones … their parents, their children, their spouses and their sweethearts. They would like to say, “I miss you” to a parent, “Good Night” to a child, “I love you” to a spouse or loved one. The question is how can we help them to fulfill those dreams?
The United Service Operation (USO) reports that prepaid phone cards to call home are the most requested items. USO Operation Phone Home delivers pre-paid phone cards to deployed troops free of charge. To participate in this worthy program and to make those much appreciated calls home possible, we urge you to make generous donations to the Phone Home project online at: www.uso.org; via phone: (800) 901- 1501; or by mail: USO World Headquarters, PO Box 96860, Washington, DC 20090-6860 (with Operation Phone Home, O.P.H. written in the memo).
Phone Cards can be purchased in increments of $25 and a special message can be included with each gift card. Please inform us regarding your efforts (i.e., number of phone cards purchased and the amount of your gift) by communicating with us at 4RTroops@philoptochos.org, so that we may share with our members how many lives of service men and women we touched through your generosity. We hope to continue with this program, not just up to or on Veteran’s Day, but through the festive holy days of Christmas as well.
Because we are Philoptochos, we can do even more. Please consider expressing our gratitude to our Veterans at this time of year. Some suggestions include:
With the assistance of Philoptochos members, Parish Sunday School Students, Youth, and their families can make cards, prepare meals, or complete some other service project for their local Veterans Administration Agency or VA Medical Center. Not only will their efforts brighten the lives of these veterans and their families, but will instill in our youth the true meaning of philanthropy.
Philoptochos Chapters or Individuals may also choose to support organizations like:
Fisher House Foundation (www.fisherhouse.org) – Fisher House builds homes on the grounds of major military and VA Medical Centers that enable family members of the military to stay in a home close to their loved ones at a most stressful time during hospitalization. Hope for the Warriors (www.hopeforthewarriors.org) – Provides a full cycle of programs, which support individuals, military families, post 9-11 service members, veterans, and families of the fallen at various points along their road to recovery, helping them find a sense of wellbeing and a fulfilling life.
Our brave service men and women have made great sacrifices to serve our country and to protect all of us. Let our service members, veterans, and their families know that we stand with them as they defend our nation and the freedoms that we cherish. It is important to express to them our appreciation for their sacrifice, that we care, and that we are eager to assist them in any way we can.”
To read the Veterans Day letter from Philoptochos’s leadership (Maria Logus, President & Katherine Siavelis and Peggy M. Vranas, New Philanthropic Initiatives Co-Chairs), please click below.
Editorial note: The Orthodox Christian Network frequently highlights acts of kindness. Pamela Collins, Board Member of the Orthodox Christian Network, suggested the note above be published as an reminder of the role we can all serve in giving back. Mrs. Collins offers her gratitude and honor to be associated with such a fine organization as Philoptochos.
ABOUT THE GREEK ORTHODOX LADIES PHILOPTOCHOS SOCIETY
The Greek Orthodox Ladies Philoptochos Society is the philanthropic arm of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America and has offered 85 years of philanthropy through a multitude of programs that make a difference in the lives of people in the United States and throughout the world.
Philoptochos fulfills its mission through its National and Metropolis Boards and its 26,000 members and more than 400 active chapters, nationwide. In 2015, National Philoptochos distributed $1.74 million in philanthropic aid.
Major initiatives include the Feeding the Hungry, Aid to Greece & Cyprus Campaign, support of St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church and National Shrine, Domestic Violence services, Children’s Medical Fund Luncheon and many other programs.
The National Philoptochos Society mission is to charitable, benevolent and philanthropic outreach to preserve the sanctity of life and family and to perpetuate and promote our Orthodox faith and traditions.” The organization is led by His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios, Chairman, His Grace Bishop Sevastianos of Zela, Spiritual Advisor, Maria Logus, President, Arlene Siavelis Kehl, First Vice President, Evangeline Mekras Scurtis, Second Vice President, Jeannie Ranglas, Third Vice President, Christine Karavites, Secretary, Martha Stefanidakis, Treasurer, Georgia Vlitas, Assistant Treasurer and Aphrodite Skeadas, Advisor. The organization’s Director is Helen Lavorata.
- The Greek Orthodox Ladies Philoptochos Society, Inc. is the philanthropic arm of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America that has offered eighty-five years of philanthropy through a multitude of programs that make a difference in the lives of people in the United States and throughout the world. The Society was established in November 1931, by the late Ecumenical Patriarch Athenagoras I, who was then serving as Archbishop of North and South America.
- Philoptochos fulfills its mission to “help the poor, the destitute, the hungry, the aged, the sick, the unemployed, the orphaned, the imprisoned, the widowed, those with disabilities and the victims of disasters through its National and Metropolis Boards and its 26,000 members and more than 400 active chapters, nationwide.
- His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios of America called Philoptochos, “an army of nobility and the jewel of our Church.”
To learn more about the National Philoptochos Society, visit http://www.philoptochos.org. For more information regarding this material and the National Philoptochos Society, please contact Rania Richardson, Communications Manager at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Click on the following link to make a donation online directly to the Philoptochos.
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