[nggallery id=1]Source: Pan Orthodox United
More than two hundred youth and young adults from six states and one Canadian province gathered in Akron, Ohio, May 17-19, 2013, in the first Pan Orthodox Fellowship Weekend for Orthodox Christian youth and young adults.
The Weekend’s activities included a round-robin soccer tournament, ethnic dance exhibition, and casual cornhole competitions.
Pan Orthodox United, a committee of young adults representing Greek, Serbian, Antiochian, Russian, Romanian, and other parishes throughout the Midwest, organized the Weekend. Michael Pacurar, of Fairlawn, Ohio, is the chairman of Pan Orthodox United.
“It’s extremely difficult for Orthodox young adults to meet each other outside of their own parish,” said Pacurar. “The purpose of the Pan Orthodox Fellowship Weekend is to bring together youth and young adults from all Orthodox jurisdictions in a less structured social setting.”
A team of players from two, Detroit area Greek Orthodox parishes took First Place in the Soccer Tournament, while the Mali Makedonci Dancers from Ft. Wayne, Indiana captured the Audience Choice Award in the Cultural Exhibition.
Other performers included Greek and Serbian dance ensembles, a Balalaika orchestra, Irish musicians and strolling troubadours. Harmonia Band, led by Walt Mahovolich of Cleveland, Ohio, provided Greek, Romanian, Macedonian, Russian, and Serbian dancing music, for everyone, into the night. It was wonderful to see the members of different dance groups teach each other their favorite steps and learn new ones after their formal performances had ended and the community dancing had begun.
The Weekend closed with an Awards Lunch at “The Presentation of Our Lord” Orthodox Church. Parish members were invited to participate, as a “Thank-You” for their support in providing the event venue.
The Fellowship Weekend coincided with the International PRIMAVARA! Festival sponsored by the Presentation of Our Lord Orthodox Church in Fairlawn, Ohio. In all, an estimated 1,200 people took part in the combined events.
In addition to Michael Pacurar, weekend organizers include William Qaqish, Natalie Jovich, Victor Frunza, Amal Michael, Maria Koulioufas, Peter Young, Mark Bleahu, Walid Qaqish, Roger Muresan, Laura Eisenbrei, Nicole Fatu, Bianca Rebrisorean, and Bethany Avramaut.
The Pan Orthodox United committee is already making plans for May, 2014. Visit their website at www.panorthodoxunited.org.