Ancient Faith Speakers Near You

Ancient Faith Ministries isn’t only available to you on the radio or in our bookstore. Our wonderful family of content contributors are also invited speakers at events around the country. We’ll do our best this year to keep you posted on where we are. We hope you’ll join us as we participate in the many opportunities we find in the life of the Church!

Here’s the first batch of listings! You’ll see the name of a podcaster, author, or blogger, and the date, title, and location of the events they’ll be leading or attending. Links are included where available, and all of the events listed are opened to the public – that means you! The list is alphabetical by last name. If you’re not sure why a name’s familiar, just click it to learn more about that person.

Who, What, When, Where?

Elissa Bjeletich: Elissa’s keeping busy all year. In addition to multiple youth camps in the summer, Elissa will be speaking at a Retreat at St. Peter’s Serbian Orthodox Church in Fresno, CA on March 3; at the Youth Equipped to Serve, Youth Servant Leadership Conference on May 26-28 in Phoenix, AZ; and at the Ancient Faith Women’s Retreat at Antiochian Village on November 15-18, 2018. During the summer, Elissa will be helping to staff Camp Emmanuel (GOA Metropolis of Denver summer camp, High School week) in Torreon, New Mexico from June 10-16, and July 22-28, Camp St. Sava (Serbian Orthodox Western Diocese summer camp, K-12) at Jackson, California (at the home parish of the first American-born Serbian Saint, St. Sebastian of Jackson) from July 22-28.

Angela Doll CarlsonAngela Doll Carlson: As she continues to work on her next book, Angela will be leading a panel at the Festival of Faith and Writing in Grand Rapids, MI, about the role of small journals in building strong readers and writers of faith. The festival is on April 13-15, 2018.


Fr. Andrew Stephen DamickFr. Andrew Stephen Damick:  Fr. Andrew will lead the Teen Retreat for the OCA Diocese of NY/NJ on March 17 at St. Basil Academy (Garrison, NY). His topic will be “In the World, But Not of the World: Orthodox Christianity in a Complicated Religious Landscape.” He will also be speaking at Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church in York, PA on April 28; St. Innocent Orthodox Christian Church in Olmstead Falls, OH on August 24-26; and at St. Elias Antiochian Cathedral in Ottawa, ON on September 21-24.

Fr. Stephen FreemanFr. Stephen Freeman: Fr. Stephen will be speaking at Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church in Akron, OH, on February 16-17, and at St. Athanasius Orthodox Church (OCA), Nicholasville, KY on March 3.



Christian GonzalezChristian Gonzalez: Christian will be at St. Elijah Antiochian Orthodox Church in Oklahoma City, OK, on March 3-4, speaking with young adults on Friday and with teens on Saturday. On March 14, he’ll be at St. Haralambos (GOA) in Niles, IL giving a Lenten presentation following Pre-sanctified Liturgy. The talk is titled, “The End of Orthodoxy: Deification in a Secular Age.” On March 17, Christian will be at St. Antony Antiochian Orthodox Church in San Diego, CA speaking with parents and youth workers, and then giving another session to older teens and young adults. On March 23, he will be at Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Phoenix, AZ giving a presentation to parents.

Melinda JohnsonMelinda Johnson: Melinda is hosting the Ancient Faith Writing and Podcasting Conference on June 20-23, and is hosting and speaking at the Ancient Faith Women’s Retreat on November 15-18, 2018. Both events are at Antiochian Village.


Nicholas KotarNicholas Kotar: Nicholas will be speaking at the summer program for Young Orthodox Scholars at the St. Basil Center for Orthodox Thought and Culture (tentative dates, July 6-13).



Fr. Nicholas and Pres. Roxanne LouhFr. Nick and Roxanne Louh: Fr. Nick and Pres. Roxanne are leading a Pan-Orthodox retreat at Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church in Akron, OH, on March 2-3. They are also leading a retreat at Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Salt Lake City, UT, on March 17-18.


Rita Madden

Rita Madden: Rita will be speaking to the Orthodox Christian Fellowship gathering at Cornell University, in the Edwards Room of Anabel Taylor Hall on Thursday, February 15. She will lead a workshop at St. Sophia’s in Syracuse, NY on Friday, February 16, and another workshop at Holy Apostles (347 Ridge Road, Lansing, NY) on Saturday, February 17.


Bobby MaddexBobby Maddex: Bobby will speak on Film and Orthodox Christianity: Why Watch? How to watch? What to watch? at the 13th annual St. Gregory Palamas Festival of Light Lenten Retreat on March 2-4, 2018. The event will be at St. George Greek Orthodox Church in Minneapolis, MN.


Bill MarianesBill Marianes: Bill will be speaking at St. John the Baptist in Beaverton, OR on February 10-11, facilitating their second strategic planning retreat. On February 17-18, he will be at Dormition of the Theotokos in Greensboro, NC for two days of programs on Orthodox Christian Servant Leadership, the Effective Church Model, Engaged Discipleship, a Culture of True Stewardship and Consensus Vision and Strategic Planning.

Frederica Mathewes GreenFrederica Mathewes-Green: Frederica will be speaking at St. Elijah Orthodox Church in Oklahoma, OK on February 16-18; at St. Justin the Martyr OCA Church in Jacksonville, FL on March 2-3; at St. Michael the Archangel Church in Wilmington, DE on March 17; at St. Mark Orthodox Church in Bethesda, MD, on March 28; at the St. Nina Sisterhood in Linthicum, MD on May 5; and she will be the keynote speaker at the Ancient Faith Writing and Podcasting Conference at Antiochian Village, June 20-23.

Jane G. MeyerJane G. Meyer: Jane will be leading a conference for picture-book writers in Bucharest, Romania on March 16-18. The conference name is Mini-doza de grandoare. She will also be wholly present, and probably leading a workshop at the Ancient Faith Writing and Podcasting Conference on June 20-23.


Melissa NaaskoMelissa Naasko: Melissa will be speaking at the Ancient Faith Women’s Retreat about our emotional relationship with food. She has also designed the Lenten menu for the event, much of which came from her book, Fasting as a Family.


Fr. Theodore ParaskevopoulosFr. Theodore Paraskevopoulos: Fr. Ted will speak on “Dying to Live: Our Journey to Life through the Passion” at a Lenten Retreat at the St. George Cultural Center in Ocean, NJ, on February 24. On March 9-11, he will lead the OCF Northeast Spring Regional Retreat on “Trampling Down Death by Death: A Christian Ending to Our Lives” at Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church in Buffalo, NY. On the weekend of April 20-22, he will speak on “Do You Want to Die? Finding True Life Through Christian Death” at The Men’s Orthodox Retreat of St. John the Baptist held annually in Caroline, Alberta.

Fr. Douglas Anthony PerkinsFr. Anthony Perkins: Fr. Anthony will be speaking on Habits of Theosis (Lenten Retreat) at Saint Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church on March 3 (1607 W Union Blvd, Bethlehem, PA 18018). The retreat is from 9 AM-3 PM and is free and open to the public. On March 24, he will lead a Lenten Retreat on Evangelism and Discipleship (with Bishop Gregory of ACROD) at St. Francis Retreat Center, 395 Bridle Path Road, Bethlehem PA. For more information and reservations for this event, contact Oleh or Natalie Bilynsky at 610-892-7315.

Barnabas PowellFr. Barnabas Powell:  Fr. Barnabas will lead a one-day retreat at Holy Cross Greek Orthodox Church in Macon, GA, on March 3, and a Taming the Passions Retreat at Annunciation Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Baltimore, MD, on March 9-11. He will speak at the Centennial Celebration of 12 Apostles Orthodox Church in Duluth, MN, on March 15-18 and at St. George Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Greenville, SC, on Tuesday, March 20, for their Lenten Weekday Series.

Nicole RoccasNicole Roccas: Dr. Roccas will speak at Trinity College in Toronto on February 13 and in Oshawa, ON, on February 28. She will be a keynote speaker at this year’s “Engaging Orthodoxy” speaker series at Northpark University in Chicago, IL, on October 6, and will be a session leader at the Ancient Faith Women’s Retreat on November 15-18 at Antiochian Village.

Dr. Albert RossiDr. Rossi: Dr. Rossi’s topic will be “Become Fire: Christian Living in Turbulent Times” on February 24 at All Saints Church in Hartford, CT (Father James Parnell, Church phone, 860.233.9234). On Mar 9-10, he will have a discussion with the college students on Friday evening and give a parish retreat entitled, “Become Fire & Kairso/Chronos” at St. George Antiochian Church, Upper Darby, PA (Father Joel Gillam, Church phone 610.853.1171). On April 28, Dr. Rossi will lead a parish retreat on “Becoming a Healing Presence,” at Holy Apostles Mission, Mechanicsburgh, PA (Father Timothy Hojnicki, Church phone 717.691.1600). On May 5, he will lead a parish retreat on “Becoming a Healing Presence,” at St. George Antiochian Church, Canton, OH (Father Michael Corbin, Church phone 330.455.8482).

Molly Maddex Sabourin

Molly Sabourin: Molly will be speaking to a Coptic Women’s Group in New Jersey on October 20. She will also be co-hosting and speaking at the Ancient Faith Women’s Retreat at Antiochian Village on November 15-18.



Kevin SchererKevin Scherer: Kevin will be leading a “Truly Human” retreat at Transfiguration Greek Orthodox church in Austin, TX, on February 23-25.




Caleb Shoemaker Blueprints for the Little ChurchCaleb Shoemaker: Caleb will be presenting on “Engaging Protestant Homeschool Curricula without Fear” at the St. Emmelia Homeschool Conference East on April 19-22, at Antiochian Village.



Ancient Faith at Your Parish?

Ancient Faith podcasters, authors, bloggers, and staff members warmly welcome the opportunity to serve your parish. Please feel very free to contact us if you are looking for a speaker, retreat leader, workshop teacher, or have another idea that we can help you implement. Chances are, we have someone who’s not too far away from you and loves to speak or teach about the very topic you had in mind! For a complete list of available people from Ancient Faith, contact Melinda Johnson at email hidden; JavaScript is required.

About Melinda Johnson

Melinda Johnson is an Orthodox Christian, wife, mama, writer, and the author of Letters to Saint Lydia (AFP 2010) and the Sam and Saucer books (AFP), among others. Melinda has a Master’s in English Literature because she loved taking literature classes so much she couldn’t stop doing it. When she is not seeing “heaven in a wildflower,” Melinda enjoys writing for children, walking and talking, and baking bread.

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