IOCC Volunteer Update - January 2017

IOCC Is 25! #IOCC25

As we begin celebrating our 25th Anniversary, please join us and incorporate the hashtag #IOCC25 into your social media posts. By typing #IOCC25 anywhere in your Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or other post, you make it easier for our audience to find anniversary-related information, and you're helping to spread the word about IOCC's work.

Help us plan ahead by scheduling your 2017 events now! We'd love to send a speaker to your parish. Please let us know what you're planning, so we can make travel arrangements well ahead of time. IOCC will also provide specially branded promotional materials for the 25th anniversary so that all parish members can join the festivities. Thank you for celebrating with us!

Did You Know...?

In 2016, IOCC volunteers across the country organized more than 70 events to raise money for and awareness about IOCC – from races to receptions and banquets, and everything in between! You put on a tailgate party, a meatball cook-off, wine pairings, a fashion show, and so much more. Thank you for giving so generously of your time and creativity!

Souper Bowl of Caring
It's now! February 5 may be the Super Bowl, but we're not talking about football. Join IOCC in serving those in need around the world in the Souper Bowl! Organize a collection in your parish: send canned goods to a local soup kitchen to help your community, and send funds raised to IOCC to help your brothers and sisters around the world! Check out for more info and tons of resources to download.

IOCC Awareness Events
Organizing an IOCC event in your parish or community? IOCC Outreach is here to help you plan and publicize – to get your local IOCC event on the calendar, contact us at
Houston, TX
On January 21, St. George Orthodox Church hosted Arabian Nights: A Young Professionals Syrian Relief Gala. In a show of solidarity, nearly 200 guests turned out to support this important cause. In addition to appetizers and other finger food, guests were treated to music by DJ Maroun Sawma, who kept the crowd dancing. An auction capped the evening's program, featuring high-end items donated by the local community. Many thanks to event chair George Katrib and all the volunteers who made this event possible!

Milwaukee, WI

On January 28, 2017, the Milwaukee Metropolitan Committee hosted its 4th annual Tailgate Celebration. This year's event took place at Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church in Milwaukee, and celebrated IOCC's 25th Anniversary. The evening began with Vespers, followed by a delicious meal of Usinger's Bratwurst and tailgate sides, and an entire table of donated desserts and goodies from volunteers across the area. IOCC Gift Officer Nick Kasemeotes provided a short presentation and introduction for the keynote speaker, IOCC Board Member, George Djurasovic. Musician Larry Hinds provided music and entertainment throughout the evening, while more than 150 people enjoyed fellowship and silent auction items like vintage sports memorabilia, spa packages, and custom jewelry. Thank you to co-chairs Katherine Newhouse and Ana Treptow and the entire group of Pan-Orthodox volunteers for helping us celebrate our 25th Anniversary!

Pittsburgh, PA
An International Soup Sampling for IOCC took place at January 28 at St. George Antiochian Orthodox Cathedral. As a thank-you for their donations, guests enjoyed samples of traditional homemade soups from around the world – including countries where IOCC works – in order to make an informed choice about which quart of soup to take home! It's winter in Pittsburgh, and this event was a great way to keep warm and support a worthwhile cause. Area youth also took the opportunity to assemble health kits for IOCC's partner program. Thank you to Danielle Opacic, Nick Terezis, and all the Pittsburgh crew for this fun and globally inspired event!

Valmorel, France
A dedicated team of athletes took on the Spartan Race Valmorel Sprint for IOCC on January 28. Team Sisu consists of Scandinavian expats Niklas Barke, Patrik Gebhardt, Kim Hurtta, and Mikko Sammalkivi, who currently live in Paris, France. The Finnish word sisu connotes endurance, positive madness, overcoming obstacles, achieving goals against all odds, and helping others. A person with sisu leaves no one behind, and this crew went the extra mile to assist those in great need. Thank you all for your passion and dedication!

Volunteers in Action
Let us know about your kit drives and IOCC presentations – email images and brief write-ups to so we can feature them here. And thank you!

OCF West Conference December 2016
In December, Orthodox Christian Fellowship (OCF) held its College Conference West at St. Nicholas Ranch in Dunlap, California. Participants not only enjoyed worship, workshops, and renewal in a beautiful setting but also learned a bit about IOCC while there. Thanks to Southwest Regional Student Leader Markayla Stroubakis of the University of California, Berkeley, for helping share IOCC at the conference!

Upcoming IOCC Events
  • February 5: Souper Bowl of Caring for IOCC
  • February 11: Houston, TX – 25th Anniversary IOCC Banquet
  • February 12: Orange County, CA – Share the Love IOCC Benefit
  • February 19: Boston, MA – All That Jazz: Musical Reception for IOCC
  • March 5: Raleigh-Durham, NC – Pan-Orthodox Vespers for IOCC
  • March 18: Denver, CO – Annual IOCC Pan-Orthodox Evening
  • March 19: Bealeton, VA – Around the World with IOCC: Coffee-Hour Benefit
  • April 2: Pittsburgh, PA – Syrian Relief Dinner & Prayer Service
  • April 22: Baltimore, MD – A Big Fat Greek Wedding Reception for IOCC's 25th
  • April 22: Cranston, RI – 25th Anniversary IOCC Benefit
  • April 30: Charlottesville, VA – Syrian Relief IOCC Benefit
  • May 6: Sacramento, CA – Odyssey of Hope 25th Anniversary Gala
  • May 6-7: Pittsburgh, PA – TEAM IOCC at the Pittsburgh Marathon Weekend
  • May 11: Chicago, IL – 25th Anniversary Grand Banquet & Silent Auction
  • May 13: New York, NY – 25th Anniversary Celebration
  • June 9: Cleveland, OH – 25th Anniversary IOCC Banquet
For information about these IOCC events and more, visit

Stay connected to IOCC through our online communities!

Join us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube, and stay up to date on news, IOCC event photos and a firsthand look at how your support is sharing good around the world.

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Daily Prayer for IOCC Volunteers
O Heavenly King, Comforter, who grants all blessings,
we thank You for Your abundant grace and mercies.
Help us to be good stewards of Your treasury through the ministry of IOCC.
Help us to strip ourselves of our earthly adornment,
so that the poor may be sufficiently clothed and fed.
And, by so loving our neighbor, adorn us with the everlasting pearls of virtue instead.
Where there is suffering, help us to bring Your mercy. Where there is despair, Your hope;
Where there is war, allow us to present You who are the Prince of Peace;
Where there is pain, You who are the Comforter; Where there is hatred, You who are Love;
Where there is death and destruction; You who are the Resurrection and Life.
Daily guide our work in IOCC, so that we may do all things,
in every place and at all times, for Your glory. Amen.
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