Christ the Savior-Holy Spirit Orthodox Church
Archpriest Steven C. Kostoff
4285 Ashland Ave, Cincinnati OH 45212 - (513) 351-0907


On Sunday, October 16, 4pm, our Youth Group under the leadership of Curtis Rutherford - and with the presence of Fr. Steven - will meet at the home of Radu and Dana Zidarescu for a discussion "Living as an Orthodox Christian in the Modern World."  Following the group discussion, there will be time for games and socializing.  Parents, please contact Curtis with your teen-ager's commitment to participate:   curtislrutherford at gmail dot com

Join us for our Autumn Retreat!



Fri. Oct 21:

  • 6:00pm - Great Vespers
  • 7:00pm - Presentation 1, Q&A, Fellowship

Sat. Oct 22:

  • 9:30am - Divine Liturgy, Brunch, Fellowship
  • 11:45am - Presentation 2, Q&A (free childcare!)
  •  1:00pm - Closing Prayer



Upcoming Services & Events


  • Wed. Oct 19, 7:00pm - Vespers


MUSEUM TOUR II - Sat. Oct 29, 11am

On Saturday, October 29, our resident art historian, Dr. Theodora Combs, has offered to take interested parishioners back to the Cincinnati Art Museum for a Part II tour of some of the museum's collection.  The first session was so successful and illuminating, that it was thought that a second session will cover some of the missed ground from earlier.

Free admission, $4 parking for non-members. Full info and online registration here.



All registrants should have been notified by the workshop organizer, Iconic Studio. If you have registered and have questions, please contact Iconic Studio directly via the information here.

Daylight Savings ends Sun. Nov 6

Daylight Savings Time ends this Sunday, November 6 at 2:00AM.


Remember to turn your clocks back an hour before going to bed Saturday night.


Join us for Museum Tour II

October 10, 2016



with our resident Art Historian, Dr. Theodora Combs

Saturday, October 29, 2016  •  11:00am - 12:15pm


On Saturday, October 29, our resident art historian, Theodora Combs, has offered to take interested parishioners back to the Cincinnati Art Museum for a Part II tour of some of the museum's collection.  The first session was so successful and illuminating, that it was thought that a second session will cover some of the missed ground from earlier.

  • Participation in the previous tour is not a prerequisite for the upcoming tour on 10/29.
  • The tour will focus on key paintings by European and American painters, including Cincinnati's own Frank Duveneck, and will be limited to 15 participants.  
  • The museum has a cafe if anyone would like to stay for lunch after the tour. 
  • Parking at the museum for non-members is $4. 
  • Admission is free.
  • Please sign up for the tour using the below registration form by October 20th. 
  • If you have any questions, please contact Theodora at 205-276-1304.



Upcoming Weekends and How You Can Help

We have three men serving in two Kairos weekends this Autumn (Oct 20-23, and Nov 3-6), and we need your help! Prayer Vigil Signup Forms are placed in the church and bookstore, plus you can signup online. Learn about how you can bake cookies for the prisoners, and other ways to help this important ministry.

Full info and much more here...



Former parishioner, Dr. Nicole (Lyon) Roccas gave a preview of her soon-to-be-published book, 'Time and Despondency', during the Oct. 30 post-Liturgy talk. Photo & info here.


Annual St Nicholas Day Pageant! - Sun. Dec 11


Dear Parish Faithful,

"Everybody loves St. Nicholas, because St. Nicholas loves everybody." 

- Fr. Andrew Phillips

St. Nicholas Day Program & Charity Dinner


This much-anticipated annual event is scheduled for this Sunday, December 11, to begin immediately after the Liturgy and our post-Liturgy discussion.  The Christmas Pageant will be performed by our pre-K to Middle School students.  Following the pageant, the High School students will assist in the Charity Dinner.  All funds collected for the dinner will be distributed to a charity chosen by the students.  Please bear this in mind when you make your free-will offering for the dinner.  We are further anticipating a visit from St. Nicholas.

Please plan on staying and supporting the parish Church School!


December 6 is the actual date on which we commemorate St. Nicholas the Wonderworker of Myra in Lycia.  Here is the link to the OCA's website and summary of his life. 



Though somewhat shrouded in legend, it is his "type" of bishop that has endeared him to so many faithful over the centuries - and even to non-Christians.  As one example from countless such examples, Anne Frank mentions St. Nicholas Day in her diary that has come down to us.  The troparion in his honor (below) refers to him as a "rule of faith" who has taught us both humility and abstinence.  A "rule of faith" means that he exemplifies the true meaning and purpose of the office of episcopos/bishop.  And, of course, his love of children is legendary.

A blessed Name Day to all those in our parish with the name of Nicholas!

~ Fr. Steven


Troparion — Tone 4


In truth you were revealed to your flock as a rule of faith,

an image of humility and a teacher of abstinence;

your humility exalted you;your poverty enriched you.

Hierarch Father Nicholas,

entreat Christ our God

that our souls may be saved.



Kontakion — Tone 3


You revealed yourself, O saint, in Myra as a priest,

For you fulfilled the Gospel of Christ

By giving up your soul for your people,

And saving the innocent from death.

Therefore you are blessed as one become wise in the grace of God.




Bring your gifts for our annual Giving Tree this Sunday, Dec 11!

December 8, 2016


Dear CTS families,

The gifts for the Giving Tree need to be brought to church this Sunday 12/11/16. There will be a collection box/area in the parish hall by the Education Center doors. No gift wrap please.

If you have gas cards, Amazon, or other gift cards please give them to me directly so they are not lost or misplaced.

Thank you for supporting the Dragonfly Foundation in the true spirit of St. Nicholas!  :-)

In Christ,

Terrie Sauer



The Nativity Fast begins Tuesday, Nov. 15


Dear Parish Faithful,

"Many Christians, unaware of the great value of fasting, either keep the fast with difficulty or reject it altogether. We should not be afraid to fast but embrace it with joy."  - St. John Chrysostom

Nativity Fast to Begin

According to the rhythm of times and seasons as found in our church calendar, the forty-day Nativity/Advent Fast leading up to the Feast of the Incarnation on December 25, will begin on Tuesday, November 15.  It always seems "too soon," but it is what it is.

Come up with your "domestic strategies" concerning this season of abstinence and do your best to stick with them.  We will all shortly engage in the "battle of the calendars."  A "strategic plan of engagement" - implying both awareness and commitment - could be more than a little helpful in that battle.

As we move toward our annual celebration of the Lord's Incarnation, we take practical steps to keep that anticipated feast in mind, "withdrawing" a bit from the worldly atmosphere that all but buries the Feast in a flurry of activities and consumerism. 

For those who may be interested, I have provided a link to an older meditation with the title "Forty Shopping - and Fasting - Days Until Christmas."  The meditation attempts to capture the tension that we all experience on one level or another between the asceticism of the fast and the consumerism of the holiday season.

Forty Shopping (and Fasting) Days until Christmas

 - Fr Steven


* Be sure to visit our Nativity Resource Section, with helpful articles, numerous unique icons for the Nativity Fast and Festal period, suggested books, and much more...

Join us for our Caroling Outing to spread holiday cheer!

December 8, 2016


Dear Christ the Savior-Holy Spirit family ~


Join us for our Caroling Event!

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas in Cincinnati! We will again be organizing a caroling group this year to bring holiday cheer to shut-ins and other members of our parish on Friday 12/16 and Sunday 12/18. Lyric guides will be provided and everyone is welcome. Whether you sing in the choir or from the pews, we hope you can join us! Children included!

Please email Mia Lastra ( for more details if you would like to participate or have us visit your home.

In Christ,


Join us for our Parish 40th Anniversary Celebration!

UPDATED October 21, 2016 with special 'History in Pictures' Slide Show! (scroll down to view...)

Christ the Savior ~ Holy Spirit

Parish 40th Anniversary Celebration!


“Honoring our Past by Faithfully Working for our Future” 


WHEN:   Sunday, November 6, 2016 • 12:15pm - 4:30pm

WHERE: A-Marika Event Center

10831 Sharondale Rd • Sharonville OH 45241

Google Map

Catered brunch, soft drinks, dessert, dancing, socializing
Special Anniversary Program  —  'Where We’ve Been/Looking Forward…'
Bring your own adult beverages
Please RSVP using the form below

*  Free Event (no tickets or suggested donation), funded by our Parish Budget! You are welcome to contribute to help defray costs…

View or Download our 'History in Pictures' Parish Slide Show in PDF format!

Download and print our 40th Anniversary Flier!


The Upcoming Week - Winning the Battle of the Calendars

Join us for Pre-Feast Vespers, Mon.-Thurs. at 7pm
Join us for Pre-Feast Vespers, Mon.-Thurs. at 7pm
Join us for Pre-Feast Vespers, Mon.-Thurs. at 7pm


Dear Parish Faithful,

"Look to heaven, and measure every step of your life so that it is a step towards it."  ~ St. Theophan the Recluse

The Upcoming Week

If the Feast of the Nativity of Christ is a "Winter Pascha" (the phrase originates with Fr. Alexander Schmemann), then this upcoming week is something of a "holy week" leading up to the Feast next Sunday.  This means that we should be all the more mindful of the ongoing Advent Fast in preparation for the Feast. If we have been neglectful up to this point, now is the time to embrace the fast seriously. If we have maintained a good discipline up to this point, then we need to continue through the remainder of this week. 


The point is to prevail in the "battle of the calendars" by giving priority to the Lord's Nativity rather than to Christmas, as understood in its more superficial form, further translated as the "holiday season."  

Have You Stopped Sinning?

I am a bit apprehensive of the course of that "battle" for so many of you have not come to Confession this Advent Season - far too many. Is this because of your "busy" schedule related to the above-mentioned "holiday season" and all that that phrase stands for?  Busy indeed, if you could not "fit in" a Confession in forty days!  If you have stopped sinning, this is understandable; but if not, then ...  For the remainder of the week, I will be in-and-out of the church with some pastoral visiting.  Otherwise, you can still contact me and we can try and find a time that will work. There is also room for confessions following the Vesper services from Monday-Thursday of this week.

Upcoming Services This Week

Monday - Thursday, Dec. 19-22:  Prefestal Vespers with Reading to follow at 7:00 p.m.
Friday, Dec. 23 - First Royal Hour at 9:00 a.m.; Ninth Royal Hour at 3:00 p.m.
Saturday, Dec. 24 - Festal Matins at 7:00 p.m.
Sunday, Dec. 25 - NATIVITY OF OUR LORD - Divine Liturgy at 9:30 a.m.




    Sat. Dec 24, 7:00pm

    Sun. Dec 25, 9:30am, Divine Liturgy

  • Third Day of the Nativity (Protomartyr Stephen)
    Tue. Dec 27, 9:30am, Divine Liturgy
  • St. Basil the Great, Circumcision of Christ, Civil New Year
    Sat. Dec 31, 6:00pm, Great Vespers
    Sun. Jan 1, 9:30am, Divine Liturgy

Visit our Nativity Resource Section for suggested books, articles, icons, and more...



Our complete Festal Schedule for the Nativity, plus our extensive Nativity Resource Section is available now.

Join us as we celebrate the 'Winter Pascha' of our Lord's Birth in the Flesh from the Ever-Virgin Mary, the Theotokos. Sync to our calendar and have our complete schedule automatically updated in your phone, tablet or computer.

The Pre-Feast Vespers, at 7pm nightly from Monday, Dec. 19 to Thursday, Dec. 22, serve as a sort of 'Advent Holy Week', followed on Friday, Dec. 23 by the Royal Hours at 9am and Noon, and then the Festal Matins for Nativity on Saturday, Dec. 24 at 7pm. The Divine Liturgy for Nativity is Sunday, Dec. 25, at 9:30am.

Plan on joining us for our annual St Nicholas Day Pageant, presented by our Church School, on Sunday, December 11, following the Divine Liturgy. We will also be commemorating our beloved American saint, St Herman of Alaska (Dec 13) with Vespers at 7pm on Dec. 12.

And sign up for our Caroling Outings, Friday, December 16 and Sunday, December 18, to bring Christmas cheer to our community.


Six Classes on Wednesday evenings, thru December 7

Now updated with Class Notes!

"To follow our long-standing tradition of reading a book together in the Fall as the basis of our class sessions and discussions, I have chosen a fairly new book by Fr. Patrick Reardon, titled The Jesus We Missed - The Surprising Truth About the Humanity of Christ.

"Our over-all goal is to read this fine book hoping to come away with a much fuller and comprehensive understanding of the 'Life of Christ', from His Nativity to Crucifixion and Resurrection.  We want to know Christ, not just know about Him; but learning essential things about Him may be the first step in that long process of knowing Him which covers our entire earthly existence."  — Fr. Steven

Full info and links to order the book here...




Relive this special event in the life of our beloved parish. Features photos from the Celebration on November 6, plus the Parish History in Pictures, plus the Commemoratve Booklet in PDF format.

All available to view and download here!