Committed to Hope at Home and Abroad
Thank you for your support and love over the years.
The COVID-19 pandemic has affected every part of daily life. As communities across the country and around the world deal with this unprecedented global health emergency, IOCC is committed to protecting the people we serve and to supporting our community of donors through a difficult time.
IOCC is now assessing what our response to COVID-19 will be both in the United States and globally. As always, we seek to find the most effective way to serve those in need, and we will share updates as we have them. Keep an eye on IOCC’s blog and on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
Special Message from His Eminence Metropolitan Nicolae
Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. (John 14: 27)
My dear sisters and brothers in Christ, this is an unprecedented time. As this new, sometimes frightening disease disrupts every aspect of our lives—personal, professional, religious, academic—I pray that we may all find peace remembering the Merciful One who created us and holds us in His loving care. Let us turn to Him in prayer with renewed fervor this Great Lent. Let us seek the intercessions of His Most Holy Mother, the God-Bearer, who is our Champion and Defender.
Especially in the midst of uncertainty and fear, let us remember that we serve the Almighty, and we are His own. Let us not succumb to fear but cling to our great hope, the Risen Christ, for His perfect love casts out fear. Let us seek in one another the image of the good God who made us. And let us serve Him by serving our neighbors, perhaps in new and creative ways, trusting that our God, who took on human flesh and gave Himself for us, is infinitely greater than the trial we now face.
May the peace of Christ be with us all!
Romanian Orthodox Metropolia of the Americas,
Liaison to IOCC from the Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops of the United States
Measures IOCC Has Taken
Our priority is to care for the people we serve, our supporters, and our staff; we are keeping you in our prayers. Please pray with us that we will come through this trial stronger as Christians and as Christ’s Church, better able to serve Him because of this experience.
At home and abroad, IOCC is committed to delivering programs to people in need, working closely with staff and partners to ensure that local regulations are followed to minimize the spread of the virus.
- IOCC has established a Crisis Response Team specifically dedicated to leading our international and domestic COVID-19 response, including coordinating with local churches, governments, and partners to identify humanitarian interventions.
In order to follow Center for Disease Control (CDC) and World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines, maintain social distancing, and do our part to limit the disruptive effects of this disease, IOCC has taken the following actions:
- IOCC staff are following healthcare agency guidelines and local regulations in the respective areas. We are coordinating with our vendors to ensure both safety of staff and continuity of operations.
- Nonessential travel and planned in-person trainings have been postponed. Meetings are taking place remotely.
- Fundraising events across the United States may be postponed depending on the decisions of local hierarchs and civil authorities, host parishes, and volunteer/Metropolitan Committee organizers. Updates are posted on iocc.org/events.
How Can You Help?
IOCC will continue to keeping our mission central, sharing hopeful messages about people you are helping and updates on our work.
Please protect yourself and your family, and follow local authorities’ directives to combat the rapid spread of disease.
We encourage you to find small ways to reach those in need around you: maybe prepare a Lenten meal for a neighbor, call fellow parishioners and ask if they’d like to pray with you by phone, or stay connected with loved ones and neighbors through digital technology and good old-fashioned phone calls.
Stay up to date with the latest developments, and follow all local directives to protect the health of your family and community.
In a time of grave uncertainty, we turn to our faith as a source of encouragement and of hope because God is greater than any trial we face. During this season of Great Lent, let us consider ways that even in the midst of this crisis, we can still offer small acts of prayer and service to our neighbors.
O Lord, You are my rock, my fortress, and my deliverer. In You I take refuge, for You are my shield and my stronghold. Cast out any fear that tempts and threatens me, and allow me to rest secure in Your loving protection. I place all my trust and my hope in You. Keep me and the world around me in Your care. Amen.