Christ the Savior-Holy Spirit Orthodox Church
Archpriest Steven C. Kostoff
4285 Ashland Ave, Cincinnati OH 45212 - (513) 351-0907
Photo and Video Gallery: Photo Gallery Archives - 2014 and earlier | Photo Gallery Archive 2015

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Christ the Savior Photo & Video Gallery

Fr Steven & Presvytera Deborah
Fr Steven & Presvytera Deborah
Fr Steven & Presvytera Deborah
Updated December 23, 2016


Welcome to our Photo and Video Page!

With the growing number of photos of events being provided by more and more parishioners, as well as occasional videos of interest to the parish, it seemed wise to host all these media on one Gallery. This is a modest start right now, but we have high hopes for the future!
This main Photo & Video Gallery covers feasts and events dating back a year or two. For more glimpses of parish life at Christ the Savior-Holy Spirit visit our Archives!

We hope you enjoy this growing feature of our parish website!

May it be blessed!

* NOTE:  Events are added in reverse chronological order, most recent at top, oldest at bottom.

Chrismation of Preston (Nicholas) Frasch

'The Seal of the Gift of the Holy Spirit!' — Amen! - 12/18/16

On Sunday, December 18, 2016, during the Little Entrance of the Divine Liturgy, Father Steven received into the Orthodox Church, through the Sacrament of Chrismation, the servant of God Preston Frasch. His patron saint is St Nicholas of Japan, and his sponsor is Curtis (Theophan) Rutherford. God grant you Many Years!

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St Nicholas Day Pageant & Charity Dinner - Photos & Video

An annual tradition for 25 years! - 12/11/16

Our annual St Nicholas Day Pageant and Charity Dinner, put on by our Church School students and teachers, was a delight and great fun for all.


Presvytera Deborah introduced the event, and called to mind that this has been an annual highlight of the parish for a quarter century or so now. Joe Foster played Christmas carols on Celtic harp as we entered the church hall, and the Pageant itself was a creative alphabetized rendering of the story of the Nativity of Christ, with several speaking parts and our littlest students punctuating the readings from A to Z.


After singing 'O Come, All Ye Faithful', we had a visit from St Nicholas. The teens then served a tasty lenten meal to conclude this wonderful event. All funds collected for the dinner will be distributed to a charity chosen by the students.


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Baptism of Natasha Irene Boyd

'As many as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ!' - 12/10/16

On Saturday, December 10, 2016, parish faithful, family and friends gathered for the baptism of Natasha Irene, daughter of John and Nika Boyd. God grant the newly-illumined Natasha, her parents, brother, sponsors and family Many Years!

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Parish 40th Anniversary Celebration

Parish Faithful and Friends gather for landmark event - 11/06/16

Our 40th Anniversary Celebration was a great success, with a large turnout of all ages, wonderful catered meal & drinks, and a splendid presentation by Joe Kormos on the history of our hyphenated parish. Dancing capped an afternoon of "looking back and looking ahead..."


Many thanks to Joyce Kormos and an inspired team whose efforts resulted in a delightful event for the parish!


Download and/or view our two special online features:


History of the Parish in Pictures - by Joe Kormos


Giving Thanks - Reflections on the 40th Anniversary Commemorative Booklet


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Fall Retreat with Fr Andrew Stephen Damick

Parish & Guests immerse themselves in 'The Church In and After the Scriptures' - 10/22/16

Our two-day Autumn Retreat on October 21 & 22, featuring noted author and podcaster Fr. Andrew Stephen Damick. was well attended by parishioners and numerous guests from the region. Learn more about Fr Damick and the retreat here.




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Welcome New Members!

Updated December 16, 2016



Be sure to introduce yourselves

and get acquainted at coffee hour!


Scroll down to see more new member photos from 2015 and earlier!

Dr Nicole Roccas previews her new book, 'Time and Despondency'


From Father Steven:


[During our October 30] post-Liturgy discussion, we were treated to a short, but excellent presentation by our former parishioner, Dr. Nicole Roccas. Nicole spoke of her forthcoming book that will be titled Time and Despondency.  In fact, she actually read the first couple of pages of her Introduction for us yesterday.

It was all quite intriguing, and based on these few pages I am now eagerly anticipating the release of her book sometime next year.  A fruitful discussion ensued as Nicole was able to take on a few good questions in our short time frame.  In her book, she will be dealing with the phenomenon of despondency, and how that universal affliction relates to time...


Continue reading on Fr. Steven's Meditations blog...


Parish savors Brazilian Brunch courtesy of St Katherine Sisterhood

A hearty meal with colorful decorations celebrates Brazilian cuisine - 10/09/16

Our thanks to the parish for their strong support of St. Katherine’s Annual Ethnic Dinner. The hall was beautifully decorated for our Brazilian theme by Roberta and the meal was beautifully orchestrated by Shirley and various members of St. Katherine’s – our thanks for all of their dedication and hard work.

In Christ,
Presv. Deborah/St. Katherine’s Sisterhood


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Exaltation of the Cross

'Through the Cross, Joy...' - 09/14/16

September 14 is the Feast Day of the Universal Exaltation of the Precious and Life-Giving Cross. We celebrated the Divine Liturgy for the Feast, and there was a representative body of parishioners here for the service, considering that this is a week/work day. The evening of the 13th, we had many of the parish faithful for the Great Vespers and procession with the Cross, as shown in these photos.

This particular focus on the Cross is rooted in an historical event of the 4th c.  Please read the OCA website's account of the feast to become aware of this Feast's origins.

(Special thanks to Pat Pride and Roberta & Scott Robedeau for their photos of the decorated Cross.)


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Back to School Game Night

Game Night at Christ the Savior - 08/21/16

Our parish teens were treated to a "Back-to-School Game Night" at the church this past Sunday, August 21.  Actually, we began at 4:00 p.m. and "played" till 7:00 p.m.  Besides the various games, there was pizza for dinner.  As you can see from the photos, there were some games requiring great concentration, and a splendid time was had by all!

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Feasts of Transfiguration and Dormition

Full Liturgical Cycle celebrated for Great Feasts - 08/15/16

We celebrated the final two Great Feasts of the Church Year with full liturgical cycles, Great Vespers with the blessing of wheat, wine and oil (Litya) on the eve of the feasts, and the Divine Liturgy on the mornings of August 6 (Transfiguration) and August 15 (Dormition). For the Transfiguration, the blessing of fruit baskets immediately followed Liturgy, while for Dormition, the blessing of herbs and flowers was performed. These photos show some of the festal joy shared by the faithful...

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Antiochian Village sees large troop from Christ the Savior-Holy Spirit

July 25, 2016


Dear Parish Faithful,
This is an awesome photo of what seems like a substantial part of our parish membership:  A large group of our young adults - not the "next generation" but the current generation - gathered together in a spirit of close friendship and fellowship at this summer's Antiochian Village camp. 

The Village, as it is called, has proven to be a real Godsend for countless Orthodox youth throughout the United States and Canada; a place where our youth can grow together in the Faith and in forging relationships that last for years into the future.  The Antiochian Archdiocese has done a remarkable job in building up the Village throughout the years.  With seventeen campers, this might be our largest group yet. I wonder how many other parishes have as many "happy campers" at the Village as we do?!
We would like to thank Dn. Paul Gansle for sharing this photo with us.
Fr. Steven

See a few more photos immediately below.




Summer Workshops 2016

Parish Workshops Come to an End - 06/23/16

Thursday evening, June 23, we had the final presentations of this year's Parish Workshops. And once again, it seems clear that everyone had a most enjoyable evening of learning, sharing and fellowship. 


There were about forty-five participants and a few observers present.  The items completed in the Clay, Pysanki Eggs, and Photography workshops were on display; and we had demonstrations of table tennis, chess games and folk dancing to round out the presentations.  There was a good combination of children and adults working together for the last two weeks. And there were some definite skills in all of these workshops on display.


We would like to thank our Workshop coordinator, Presvytera Deborah, and all of the workshop leaders for their time and effort.  It was a good time had by one and all!


- Fr. Steven



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Great Feast of Pentecost 2016

Christ the Savior-Holy Spirit celebrates the descent of the Holy Spirit - 06/19/16

Dear Parish Faithful,

"O Heavenly King, the Comforter"

"And suddenly a sound came from heaven like the rush of a mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting."  (ACTS 2:2)

We were blessed with a truly festal celebration of Pentecost this past weekend.  At the Great Vespers on Saturday evening, we had at least forty-five(!) "souls" praying and worshipping in the church, at a service that culminated with the blessing of the loaves and an anointing with the "oil of gladness."  In the context of a feast day, that anointing is a manifestation of the joy of receiving the Holy Spirit in the communal act of worship. 


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During the 'Kneeling Prayers' of the Vespers of Pentecost
During the 'Kneeling Prayers' of the Vespers of Pentecost
During the 'Kneeling Prayers' of the Vespers of Pentecost

It was at the Great Vespers service that we first sang "O Heavenly King" for the first time in fifty days. Our choir sang all of the festal hymnography beautifully and prayerfully as we gathered on the eve of the Feast in preparation and anticipation of the "great day" of Pentecost.


We then enjoyed a wonderful Liturgy for Pentecost on Sunday morning, as we relived and actualized the reception of the Holy Spirit who "descended" into our midst as we assembled together in the presence of the Risen Lord.  The church was decorated in green as the sign of  eternal renewal which is a gift of the Holy Spirit who makes all things new. Unique to the Feast is the immediate celebration of the Vespers of Pentecost following the Liturgy. 


At the end of the Vespers service, as we sang the troparion of Pentecost, I tossed walnut leaves - perfectly shaped like  "tongues of fire" - into the air throughout the entire church, that then fell down upon everyone as a sign of our reception of the Holy Spirit.  I discovered this colorful practice in a Bulgarian Orthodox Church some years ago, and we have been doing it here for many years now.  Not only our children, but anyone who has a "childlike" openness to the divine presence, really enjoys that rite.  After what is a long morning, I believe that we then leave with a sense of spiritual renewal.



Cincinnati 'Cross the Bridge for Life' 2016

Christ the Savior-Holy Spirit well represented at annual Spring Walk for Life - 06/05/16

Several members of the parish turned out for this annual march for life. Special thanks to Andrew Herbst for organizing and encouraging parish participation! Thanks to Chuck Haynes and Melissa Mason for great photos! To learn more about this worthy event, visit

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Visit by Bishop Paul - Part 1, Vespers with Q&A

Bishop Paul joined us for Vespers and engaged in a lively Q&A afterwards - 05/28/16


From Fr. Steven:


"The long-anticipated pastoral visit by His Grace, Bishop Paul, and the ordination to the diaconate of Paul Gansle, proved to be a wonderful experience for our parish community this past weekend.


"Beginning with Great Vespers on Saturday evening and culminating with a majestic Divine Liturgy on Sunday morning, we were blessed with the presence of His Grace for a major parish event - Deacon Paul's ordination. Once again, congratulations to Deacon Paul and his entire family.


"As worship is at the heart of parish life, it was only fitting that we celebrated the liturgical cycle of Great Vespers and the Divine Liturgy with great beauty and prayerfulness.  Our parish choir, under the direction of Pat Pride, was in "top form," and our young servers in the sanctuary were very much up to the task of fulfilling their roles in the rubrically-challenging hierarchical Liturgy. We thank God for a wonderful weekend!"


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Visit by Bishop Paul - Part 2, Greeting of His Grace, the Vesting

Bishop Paul welcomed by the Parish before Hierarchical Liturgy - 05/29/16

As the prelude to the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy, His Grace was formally welcomed at the church entrance by representatives from our Parish Council, our youth, and by Fr. Steven...


The traditional offering of bread and salt, and lovely bouquets of flowers from the youth brought big smiles from Bishop Paul. After the greetings at the back of the church, His Grace processed into the nave, venerated the holy icons, and blessed those assembled, before being assisted in being vested by our altar servers. These photos capture some of the highlights...


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Visit by Bishop Paul - Part 3, Hierarchical Divine Liturgy, Ordination of Deacon Paul

'Where the Bishop is, surrounded by the People, there is the Church!' - 05/29/16

The pinnacle of the visit by His Grace, Bishop Paul, was the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy, and the ordination of Deacon Paul...


This sequence of photos begins with the ordination of Reader Paul to Sub-Deacon, and essentially follows the course of the Divine Liturgy. Sub-Deacon Paul, according to the liturgical tradition, remained until the Anaphora in front of the icon of Christ holding a bowl and pitcher, with a towel around his shoulders, symbolizing his new life of service in the Church upon his ordination to the Holy Diaconate...


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Bishop Paul delivering the homily...
Bishop Paul delivering the homily...
Bishop Paul delivering the homily...

... Following the reading of the Gospel by Deacon Alexander, Bishop Paul gave a homily for the Sunday of the Samaritan Woman, expressing how our Faith in Christ is always something which must be experienced, and exhorting us to so experience our Lord Jesus Christ and reflect His Life in our lives, that we too would witness Him to the world, that others may come to know Him and believe.


The Ordination occurs soon after the consecration of the Eucharistic Gifts, and before the Lord's Prayer. In a manner similar to the Orthodox wedding service, the new deacon is led around the altar three times, while the clergy and the choir alternate singing the same hymn as used in the wedding procession, "Rejoice O Isaiah." With each turn around the altar, the new deacon kisses the corners of the altar, and makes a full prostration to the seated Bishop, affirming his vows to faithfully serve Jesus Christ, His Holy Church, Her Bishops and Priests. He is spiritually wedded to the Church, to the Altar, in which is placed relics of the saints.

The laying on of hands...
The laying on of hands...
The laying on of hands...

Following the three processions, the new deacon kneels at the corner of the altar while the Bishop lays his hands upon him and consecrates him. The Bishop then presents the Deacon to the Faithful, vesting him in his new diaconal robes; as he presents each vestment, the Bishop exclaims AXIOS! three times, the faithful responding each time.


At Communion, Deacon Paul followed Deacon Alexander in bringing out the Holy Gifts to the People. Following Communion, accompanied by Deacon Alexander, Deacon Paul intoned his first Liturgy as a rightfully ordained clergyman.


At the end of the Liturgy, Bishop Paul offered a heartfelt exhortation to both Deacon Paul and Matushka Kris on the meaning of their new role in the Life of the Church. Then, His Grace offered "Many Years!" to the newly ordained Deacon Paul and family, which our wonderful choir joyfully led us in singing. The Gansle family was then greeted and congratulated by the Faithful following the veneration of the Cross.


A wonderful festal meal, organized by Presvytera Deborah, followed in the Church Hall, capping off a most special weekend in parish history, especially fitting as we celebrate the 40th Anniversary of Christ the Savior-Holy Spirit.



Church School: Grads, Teachers and more...

Honoring our 2016 Grads and Teachers - 05/15/16

Following the Divine Liturgy on Sunday, May 15, we honored our six high school graduates in the parish this year:

Alexandra Hollister  •  Jasmine Lowrey  •  Miriam Markvan  •  Justin Myers  •  Braden Sauer  •  Alexandra Taylor

We also honored our Church School teachers, who faithfully serve Christ and His Church by building up our youth in our most holy Faith!

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Views from Holy Week - Pascha

Unique perspectives on the Divine Services of Holy Week & Pascha - 05/01/16

This collection of images, with many unique views and closeups, captures the feel of the "mystical torrent" of divine services from Great and Holy Friday, Geat and Holy Saturday, and Holy Pascha. by Mickey Callender.

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Annual Bright Friday Church School Outing

Festive Fellowship for Church School caps Bright Week! - 05/06/16

Our annual Church School Bright Friday Party was a rousing success, with youthful energy in abundance as kids clambered up rock walls, swam, played air-hockey and an abundance of other games and activities. Enjoy the photos!

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Agape Vespers

The Gospel read in Many Languages... - 05/01/16


We had a large and exuberant turnout for this beautiful Paschal Vespers service, at which is read St. John's Gospel account of Jesus appearing to the disciples at the end of the first day of His Resurrection. Traditionally, the Gospel is read in as many different languages as possible, confirming the universal message of Christ. This year we heard (of course) English, Russian, Greek, Spanish, Romanian, Polish, Swedish, and for the first time, Welsh!

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Pascha Night

The Night 'Brighter than the Day'! - 05/01/16



From the darkened church and the vigil at the Tomb, to Fr Steven bringing the Holy Fire of Pascha out from the altar to the faithful, to the great procession and the service at the entrance to the church, and the explosion of light, joy, color and song of Paschal Matins, this gallery captures a bit of the Resurrection Joy which swept us through our divine services of this radiant night! Includes some photos of our Agape meal following, and the breaking of the Fast...

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Holy Friday - Holy Saturday

Highlights of Great and Holy Friday and Saturday - 04/29/16

From the decorated Tomb and Vespers of the Taking Down from the Cross, to the procession with the Burial Shroud (Epitaphios) of Christ and the Lamentations at the Tomb on Great and Holy Friday night, to the Vesperal Liturgy on Great and Holy Saturday morning with the first announcement of the Resurrection, this gallery offers some glimpses into our continued journey to the Empty Tomb and our encounter with the Risen Christ.

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Holy Week 2016

Bridegroom Matins

Bridegroom Matins, Anointing Service, and Holy Thursday - 04/28/16

We hope you enjoy these views of our journey with the Lord through His Great and Holy Passion Week...

This gallery begins with the Bridegroom Matins of Holy Monday (celebrated in anticipation on Palm Sunday evening), and continues through the Matins and Anointing Service on Holy Wednesday evening, and culminates with the Service of the 12 Passion Gospels on Geat and Hly Thursday evening.

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Bridegroom Matins
Procession with the Bridegroom icon into the church...
Anointing Service, Holy Wednesday evening
Matins of Great and Holy Thursday...
Holy Thursday evening,
The service of the 12 Pssion Gospels,
Matins of Great and Holy Friday...
Venerating the Lord on the Cross...
Palm Sunday 2016

Festive church celebrates Christ's Entry into Jerusalem - 04/24/16

Hosanna in the Highest! — From our 'modified Vigil' of Saturday evening, with the blessing and distribution of palm fronds, and the blessing of wheat, wine and oil and anointing of the faithful for the Feast, to the full church and great processions of the Divine Liturgy itself on Sunday, our commemoration of the Lord's Entry into Jerusalem before His Passion Week was joyous and colorful. But barely more than six hours after the Liturgy, the votive glasses and altar cloths were changed back to purple for Holy Week. We hope to see you as we follow the Lord to the Upper Room, Gethsemane, Golgotha and the Empty Tomb!

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Presanctified Liturgy

O Gladsome Light...

The Liturgy of the Presanctified Gifts - The Christian Life in Microcosm - 04/20/16

On Wednesday, April 20, we celebrated the final Presanctified Liturgy of Great Lent for 2016.


These photos hopefully convey a glimpse of the deeply mystical atmosphere which pervades this unique service, which Fr Thomas Hopko called one of the true "masterpieces" of Byzantine liturgical tradition. Of all the Lenten services, the Presanctified Liturgy is the most compelling, giving Lent that unique quality of a "bright sadness."


Read Fr Steven's wonderful meditation, The Presanctified Liturgy: 'A Day in Our Life', and 'Our Life in One Day'.


Following the Liturgy, we enjoyed a wonderful Lenten pot luck dinner and warm fellowship in the church hall, before departing in peace...


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O Gladsome Light...
'Wisdom, O Believers...'
'The Light of Christ...'
'Illumines all!'
'Let my prayer arise...'
'in Thy sight as incense...'
Prayer of St Ephraim
Entrance with the Presanctified Gifts...
'Taste and see that the Lord is good...'
Lenten pot-luck after Liturgy...
Guest Speakers for Great Lent 2016

Theologian Fr. Cyril Hovorun and Author Angela Doll Carlson visit Christ the Savior - 04/16/16

Through providential opportunities, we were able to host two unique speakers during Great Lent this year.


On Sunday, April 3, following the Divine Liturgy, author Angela Doll Carlson read from her new book, Nearly Orthodox, and engaged with the parish for some lively Q&A discussion after. Her honest and insightful account of her journey to the Orthodox Faith provides a refreshing and artistic, poetic perspective for converts, seekers and strugglers. 


For her reading, Angela chose a passage perfect for Great Lent, which reflected on the necessity of taking time to allow the lengthy services (especially of the Great Canon of St Andrew during the First Week) to work their grace in us, and linking that to the need for simple, play time with her children. It was a very thoughtful passage and, coming on the Sunday of the Cross, served as an added encouragement to us to press forward through the course of the Fast.


Copies of her book are available online or in the parish bookstore. Angela has family in the area, so we hope to see her often on her repeat visits to Cincinnati!


On April 16 & 17, Fr. Cyril Hovorun, distinguished Orthodox priest and theologian who teaches at Kiev and Stockholm, and is a research fellow at Yale and Columbia Universities, led us on an fascinating exploration of the issues surrounding the upcoming Pan-Orthodox Council, as well as of the role and witness of the Orthodox Church in the world in general. We recorded both his talks, and invite you to listen to them here.


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Memorial Saturday Liturgy and Parish Cleanup

Parish turns out to commemorate our departed, and 'deep clean' for Holy Week/Pascha. - 04/09/16

There is something special which occurs at the Memorial Saturday liturgies, as we gather to commemorate before the Lord our family and dear ones who have passed on before us. Several wonderful recipes of kollyva (memorial boiled wheat) and wine graced the Memorial Service following Liturgy as many lingered in fellowship.


Following a tasty and nourishing brunch and some coffee and tea, we launched into our annual 'deep cleaning' to prepare the church and hall for Holy Week and Pascha. Excellent turnout and many teens and young folk greatly contributed to the wonderful fellowship which always accompanies this parish tradition.


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Veneration of the Precious and Life-Giving Cross

At the Midpoint of the Fast, the Cross refreshes us... - 04/03/16

The hymns of the Church for the Veneration of the Cross at the middle of Great Lent are clear.


We begin to turn our attention towards the Lord's Passion Week now approaching more urgently, and if we have been drooping from the Lenten effort, the Cross is placed in the center of the church to refresh and strengthen us for the journey ahead. It is truly the Tree of Life for us in the Paradise of the Church!


The cross is first brought out during Great Vespers on Saturday evening, and is venerated with prostrations also on the Sunday of the Cross, and throughout the entire following week remains in the center of the church for the faithful to venerate.


"Before Thy Cross, we bow down in worship O Master, and Thy Holy Resurrection we glorify!"


Our beautiful carved cross, decorated with flowers and fragrant with the blossoms, also contains a relic of St Vladimir, and is much beloved by the parish.


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Sunday of Orthodoxy Vespers 2016

Our choir team - ready to sing!

St George Serbian Orthodox Church hosts Sunday of Orthodoxy Vespers - 03/20/16

Eleven of us from our parish were present March 20 at St. George Serbian Orthodox Church for the Vespers service commemorating the Sunday of Orthodoxy as well as taking us into the Second Week of Great Lent.  Fr Steven served (and was asked to give the homily) with four other Cincinnati area priests and a deacon, and we also made a huge contribution to the choir.  (Those who didn't stay missed an incredible lenten meal that followed the service).

The mixed, pan-Orthodox choir was directed by Kurt Sander, noted Orthodox composer and longtime friend of Christ the Savior-Holy Spirit. In addition to Fr Steven, clergy included:

Perhaps we can host this event next year...


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Our choir team - ready to sing!
The mixed choir, directed by Kurt Sander...
... gathered around the kliros
The packed church at St George...
...there were another twenty or so behind the photographer!
Proclaiming the Triumph of Orthodoxy...
...and the Restoration of the Holy Icons!
Fr Petar Petrovic
Fr Steven Kostoff at the conclusion of Vespers
Choir director Kurt Sander
Fr Steven delivers the homily...
Concelebrants of Sunday of Orthodoxy Vespers
Fr Daniel Marshall (r.) invites all present... the visit of the Kursk-Root Icon to St George (ROCOR)
Fr Petar thanks all those present and invites us to stay for the meal
The pan-Orthodox choir
Church School Procession with Icons

Church School celebrates Sunday of Orthodoxy with Holy Icons - 03/20/16

Christ the Savior-Holy Spirit was treated to quite a sight, as our several dozen church school students processed with icons into the nave from the back of the church, following the Divine Liturgy on March 20, the Sunday of Orthodoxy. After they had gathered in front of the amvon, Fr Steven went around and had each student describe their icon and the saint. Fr Steven read the stirring proclamation for the Restoration of the Holy Icons.


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Church School Lenten Service Project

Students support local ministry to homeless with 2016 Lenten project - 03/20/16

For their 2016 Lenten Service Project, the church school children packed 150 non perishable sack lunches for The Broken Bus Ministry. Special thanks to Terrie Sauer for the great photos. You can learn more about this worthy mission here:

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First Week of Great Lent

The line for Forgiveness Vespers stretched all around the church...

The Parish enters into the 'School of Repentance' - 03/13/16

From Forgiveness Vespers on Sunday afternoon, March 13 (when Great Lent liturgically begins), through the Great Canon of Repentance on Monday through Thursday evenings, to the first Presanctified Liturgy on Friday, March 18, we have entered vigorously into the course of the Fast.

Catch a glimpse of the 'bright sadness' of Great Lent through these images, and be sure to join us for these quiet and transformative services which prepare our hearts to encounter the Lord's Passion Week.

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The line for Forgiveness Vespers stretched all around the church...
"...Forgive me... God forgives..."
...making a good beginning...
The Great Canon...
'Have mercy on me, O God...'
'O Lord and Master of my life...'
Baptism of Olga Leara

Granddaughter of Nolan and Shirley Leara is illumined - 02/21/16

Olga Leara, daughter of Bill and Michelle Leara (who live in Texas), and granddaughter of Nolan and Shirley, was born of water and the Spirit at a baptismal liturgy on Sunday, February 21. Thankfully, Cincinnati was a fairly central location for all travelers, which allowed us to concelebrate this joyous event. It is always wonderful to see Bill and Michelle, and for many of us this was our first opportunity to meet Michelle's family.

God grant Olga, her parents and sponsors Many Years!

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Theophany - The Great Blessing of Waters

Parish celebrates Christ's Baptism in the Jordan, and 'the Worship of the Trinity made manifest!' - 01/10/16

To use its full title, on the evening of January 5 we celebrated a Vesperal Divine Liturgy for THE THEOPHANY OF OUR LORD AND SAVIOR JESUS CHRIST, a title that we usually summarize as "Theophany" (sometimes "Epiphany"). With just about sixty(!) worshippers in the church for the Feast, we can then truly say that our communal celebration was festal. Truly, an excellent beginning to the New Year.

The photos in this slide show are from the Great Blessing of Waters on the Sunday after Theophany...

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Baptism of Sophia Boehne

Born of Water and the Spirit... - 12/13/15

Sophia Boehne, daughter of Jacob and Adalia, was baptized on Sunday, December 13 in the context of a Baptismal Liturgy. Erin Lockridge is her godmother/sponsor. A beautiful, peaceful Liturgy and Baptism was experienced, as you will see from these pictures!  'Many Years!' to the newly illumined Sophia, her parents Jacob & Adalia, big brother Elijah, and her sponsor Erin!

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St Nicholas Day Celebration - Photo Gallery and Videos

Annual Church School Nativity Celebration and Charity Dinner delights parish, raises $750 for charity - 12/06/15

We had a wonderful day, Sunday, December 6, following the Liturgy, with our Nativity play and meal. We would like to thank our "Production Co-ordinator," Presvytera Deborah and all of her helpers - costume designers, musicians and singers, etc. -  for a finely-conceived and executed Nativity Play.  The Charity Dinner to follow brought in around $750.00, one of our highest totals ever.  Our high school students will determine how that charity money will be distributed.

Special thanks to Mike Fleisch for the photos and video, and to Nadya Gerasimchuk for the top two videos added Jan. 16 2016. (Scroll down for video!)


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Videos from St Nicholas Day Celebration

Updated January 16, 2016



Includes visit by St Nicholas . . .

Special thanks to videographer, Nadya Gerasimchuk!

Athanasius Herbst Baptism

First-born son of Andrew and Suzanne Herbst is Baptized - 11/22/15

On Sunday morning, November 22, we celebrated a Baptismal Liturgy, baptizing Athanasius Herbst, son of Andrew and Suzanne Herbst.  The sponsor is Chuck Haynes. The experience of a Baptismal Liturgy is always a powerful one, reminding us of the ancient yet timeless practice of the Church from her earliest days, wherby believers were born anew "of water and the Spirit." Many Years!

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Mother Paula visits Christ the Savior-Holy Spirit

October 25, 2015


Dear Parish Faithful,

The following is from Steve Korach, who took notes during Mother Paula's talk to the parish during the post-Liturgy discussion on October 25.  This could serve as an excellent summary of Mother Paula's talk for those who would want to retain the main points of her wonderful presentation; and a summary for those who were not in attendance.  The actual audio of Mother Paula's talk is below.

Fr. Steven


"On Living a Christ-Centered Life"

3 C’s: Christ, the Cross, God’s Commandments


(Adapted from the Teachings of Fr. Thomas Hopko)

1. Christ

Do we know who Christ is? We need to establish a relationship with Christ.
It’s done through Prayer. Pray as you can. Pray simply and pray always.
Make prayer a part of your priorities due to the many distractions of life.  
Prayer helps us to forgive.

2. The Cross

We belong to Christ. Deny ourselves and take up our Cross.
The Cross is our protection. You have a Cross from baptism.
Wear your Cross and use it to fight the passions.
Committing to Christ is not a one time event.

3. God’s Commandments

Love God and our neighbors. Give yourself to others.
Matthew 11:29-30: "Christ’s yoke is good." The soul is refreshed through Him.

(The actual Greek word usually translated as "easy" in v30 really means 'good', 'virtuous', or 'upright'.)
Do everything with repentance and humility.
Repentance is “getting back on target”.
We need to ask for help: from the Mother of God, from the Saints, and from God.

Mother Paula's message to the high school youth as they return to school:

Remain faithful; trust in God; stay close to Christ.
Be mindful of the 5 S’s: Scripture, Services, Sacraments, Saints and Suffering
A recent book that she recommends is 30 Steps to Heaven.
It is a practical interpretation of the Ladder of Divine Ascent.

The goal is the Kingdom of Heaven. The objective is purity of heart.

'Remaining Christ-Centered' ~ A Talk on the Christian Life

Suzanne Herbst Chrismation

Beginning the Service of Reception, Saturday Vespers, at the back of the Church...

Welcome Home, Suzanne! - 09/20/15

We received Suzanne Herbst into full communion of the Orthodox Church this past September, with the first part of the Service of Reception on Saturday the 19th following Great Vespers, and the Chrismation on Sunday morning during the Divine Liturgy. Suzanne's sponsor is Jennifer Haynes. Welcome home, Suzanne, and God grant you Many Years!

(10 images)

Beginning the Service of Reception, Saturday Vespers, at the back of the Church...
...Processing into the Nave after reciting the Creed.
The Sacrament of Repentance (Confession)
Chrismation during the Sunday Liturgy
God grant you Many Years, Suzanne!
Feast of the Dormition of the Mother of God

Feast-Lovers gather to venerate the Falling Asleep of the Theotokos - 08/15/15

"One of my beloved professors from seminary always used to say that a sign of a spiritually strong parish is that parish's devotion to the Mother of God. For she is the personal image of the Church - warm, embracing, nurturing, protecting..."


~ Fr. Steven

(10 images)

Joseph Foster Chrismation

Joseph Foster received into the Church by Chrismation - 07/12/15

Our dear brother Joe Foster has been a friend of Christ the Savior-Holy Spirit for some 25 years or so, and we rejoice at welcoming him into full communion! Joseph's sponsor is Steve Pride.  God grant you many years!!!

(9 images)

"The Seal of the Gift of the Holy Spirit..."
Parishioners greet Joe and Steve at the conclusion of the Divine Liturgy...
Icon of the Old Testament Patriarch Joseph the All-Comely
Prosopon Iconography Workshop an Inspiring Experience

Prosopon Iconography Workshop at Christ the Savior-Holy Spirit - 06/27/15

This week-long, immersive training in not only the techniques, but the theology, spirituality and anthropology of traditional Orthodox Christian iconology and iconography was a revelation for the participants, and a first for our parish. We are deeply humbled to have been able to host Master Iconographer Vladislav Andrejev and his Prosopon team, and hope to do so again! Full story here.

(15 images)

Amelia Davis Baptism

Baptismal Sunday Liturgy welcomes Amelia Davis into the Church - 06/14/15

Little Amelia, who set a high bar for peaceful, serene infant baptisms, daughter of Leanne Davis, was received into the Church through Baptism and Chrismation during the Divine Liturgy on Sunday, June 14; Anne Taylor, sponsor.

(10 images)

Special Moleben and Cookout for Pentecost

Mother Elizaveta hosts Moleben and Cookout - 05/31/15

To worthily celebrate the Feast of Pentecost, Mother Elizaveta and her sister Chynara and their children Carolina and Aziz hosted a special Moleben service and cookout in honor of The Holy Trinity, the Theotokos and all the Saints. A Joyous Feast!

(9 images)

Received into the Church...

Laura and her sponsor, Erin Lockridge

Recent Chrismations at Christ the Savior - 05/24/15

Laura Menze (May 24) and Melissa Munaco (June 7) were recently received into full communion of the Orthodox Church through the sacraments of Confession, Chrismation and Communion. The Reception by Chrismation occurred during the Little Entrance of the Sunday Divine Liturgy, and so in both cases were truly festal events in the life of the Church, witnessed and joined in by the entire parish community. We wish Laura, Melissa, and their sponsors and families "Many Years!"

(9 images)

Laura and her sponsor, Erin Lockridge
Melissa Munaco...
Welcome New Members!



Be sure to introduce yourselves

and get acquainted at coffee hour!



Bus-Stop Evangelism by CTS Members!

March 8, 2015

Here is an example of local Orthodox evangelism being carried out by our parishioners, Jacob & Adalia Boehne.  Please keep their ministry in your prayers.   — Fr. Steven


From Jacob Boehne:

This afternoon Adalia and I set up the evangelism table at the bus stop. If was another great day! People are responding well, engaging in prayer/conversation and taking the Bibles/ pamphlets. I am attaching a photo of the table so you can visualize what I am doing.  


In Christ,