I have sadly fallen out of the habit of posting parish spotlights when I travel. Hopefully this post is the first in a recaptured tradition of parish visit postings. This weekend I visited Allentown (for gallons of honey of all things) and was able to make trips to two parishes: St. Paul Antiochian Orthodox Church of Emmaus and Protection of the Blessed Virgin Mary Church (ACROD) in downtown Allentown, PA.
|The church in better weather|
The architecture of the former owners worked quite well with the needs of an Orthodox church - so much so that if the stained glass windows weren't filled with patterns of stars of David and scales I might not have known it was not purpose built by the Carpatho-Rusyn people that use it now. I expected a diminished parish given the age and the Latino-ization of the area, but the Liturgy was actually quite well attended. The priest there, Protopresbyter Robert J. Rebeck, has served for fifty years and was happy to see our short-lived injection of numerous children. My middle daughter, always a boisterous singer, was greeted fondly by the older ladies of the parish as well.
Given that the parish is located where it is and has a rather good Sunday turn-out there is some hope that evangelizations efforts would help reintegrate the parish into the new melting pot neighborhood. We reintegrated ourselves with a stop at a local taqueria after Liturgy for chilaquiles verdes, tacos, pancakes, and horchata. Somehow we found room next to the honey container for pantry items like masa harina, manteca, tamarind, and "travel food" like chile-spiced mangoes, Jarritos drinks, etc.
|The parking lot was under construction when I arrived|
Hopefully my next trip to the area will be less darting from warm rabbit warren to rabbit warren and more taking in the local sites. Oh, and more tacos.