Women's Fellowship

There are two organized groups on the St. Vladimir's campus, offering a wide range of programs and activities for seminarian wives and women students.

The St. Juliana Society, formed to support future clergy wives, plans a variety of events with a range of speakers who cover topics that have been suggested by former graduates and 2nd- and 3rd-year student wives. Meetings are on alternate Monday evenings at 7:00 p.m. generally at the home of our Chancellor and his wife, Fr. Chad and Mat. Thekla Hatfield.  

"I remember what it was like being a young clergy wife, clueless as to what was expected of me and how to deal with the challenges of parish and mission life," notes Matushka Thekla. "With the help of my student planners, we create a venue for questions about what happens after seminary, and try to equip wives with the tools they will need." 

The second group, a more general Women's Group, is specifically aimed at facilitating events that encourage fun and fellowship for all the women on campus, whether they be staff, faculty wives, or students. Movie nights, "mom's night out," cooking classes, game nights, and other creative special activities, draw the women together for times of relaxation and fellowship.


Read more about the Wives' Program:

Seminary Women Learn About Divine Services

View the presentation on YouTube

Over the course of two Monday evenings, February 15, 2016 and March 21, a unique St. Juliana Society program was hosted in the Bashir Auditorium on campus. Hierodeacon Father Herman (Majkrzak), lecturer in Liturgical Music and director of Chapel Music, presented a two-part series, "Introduction to the Divine Services and the books used in them."

Offering an overview of all the liturgical resources used by clergy and choir directors to assemble services—hymns, prayers, saints' lives, and more—Fr. Herman explained each part of the service, and how each piece contributes to the whole. He also brought copies of all the service books, displaying them on a table in front of the room. As a helpful visual aid, he sketched out the framework of the entire Church calendar, September through August, on the lecture hall's long white board. The chart presented the women with a vivid depiction of both the complexity and the unity present in the liturgical year.

Women's Group Hosts Metropolitan Tikhon

The appealing invitation read, "Good afternoon, Ladies, Please join us at tomorrow’s Wine & Cheese reception. Let’s enjoy this last celebration before Lent begins!" Invited by Matushka Thekla Hatfield and Matushka Robyn Hatrak, SVOTS women attended a pre-lenten campus gathering on March 7  featuring an honored guest, His Beatitude Metropolitan Tikhon of the Orthodox Church in America (OCA).

The ladies first enjoyed a potluck of favorite cheesefare cuisine, before assembling to hear from His Beatitude, the Seminary's president and board chairman. After the chancellor of the Seminary, Archpriest Chad Hatfield, offered a short introduction, and Metropolitan Tikhon briefly shared his thoughts on the role of clergy wives in the Church, the floor was open for questions.

Khouria Krista West is St. Juliana Guest Speaker

The St. Juliana Society met on Monday, December 7, 2015 in the Metropolitan Philip Auditorium on campus to hear a special presentation by Khouria Krista West. Owner of Krista West Vestments, an author, and a very dynamic speaker, Kh. Krista creates designs that may be found in Orthodox churches of every major jurisdiction in North America as well as numerous countries throughout the world.

Lively Presentations Encourage Seminary Wives

Mat. Amy Bozeman chats with Lauren Pulley at St. Juliana Society presentationMat. Amy Bozeman chats with Lauren Pulley at St. Juliana Society presentationTwo presentations hosted by the St. Juliana Society (SJS) in the fall 2015 term provided the future clergy wives at St. Vladimir's with much food for thought and discussion. On Monday evening, October 26, a large group of women turned out to join in a mini-workshop offered by Matushka Amy Bozeman. Matushka and her husband Fr. David Bozeman (SVOTS '12) lead the community of St. Nektarios Orthodox Mission in Waxahachie, TX.

Women Meet for Friendship and Fellowship at Start of 2015-2016 Year

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On September 21, the Women's Group at St. Vladimir's began the 2015–2016 year with a casual wine and cheese gathering in the Metropolitan Philip Auditorium. The event started at 7 pm, and included introductions to both the St. Juliana Society—a support group for future clergy wives—and the all-inclusive Women's Group, which is specifically aimed at facilitating events that encourage fun and fellowship for all the women on campus, whether they be staff, faculty wives, or students.

Women's Group Visits Emmaus House

By Dr. Alexis Vien, wife of third-year seminarian Brad Vien

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On Monday, May 4, the St. Vladimir's Women's Group sorted donated clothes and cleaned the facilities at Emmaus House in New York City, a hospitality home in Harlem with a mission of serving the poor in a disadvantaged neighborhood. We learned about the history and mission of the house from several of its earliest and long time volunteers: Annie, Omar, and Tom.  

Dr. Rossi Leads Women in Prayer and Reflection

On March 9, a special Lenten meeting of the St. Juliana Society, the St. Vladimir's fellowship for future clergy wives, featured author and speaker Dr. Albert Rossi, St. Vladimir's director of Field Education. An experienced retreat leader, Dr. Rossi led the women in a mini-version of the seminars he holds in parishes around the U.S.

The women wrote answers to reflective questions such as "Tell us about a time when God spoke to you" on 3 x 5 cards, participated in a period of silence, and listened to music. "We need to choose silence, in order to hear the voice of God," emphasized Dr. Rossi. "The whole Old Testament is about the Israelites refusing to be still." 

Women Learn CPR Skills

Report by Robyn Bishop

On Monday, March 2, the St. Vladimir's women's group met together to learn a valuable skill: cardiopulmonary resuscitation, or CPR! We were joined by Rebecca from CPRed (based out of Brewster, New York), who led the women in CPR skills to be used on adults, children, and babies in cardiopulmonary emergences. Everyone who attended will receive a certificate from the American Heart Association. Congratulations!

St. Juliana Society Evening Features Hatfield Story

Hatfield hospitality: Mat. Thekla shares her story with the women of the St. Juliana SocietyHatfield hospitality: Mat. Thekla shares her story with the women of the St. Juliana Society"When we started out our years of ministry, I was terrified," admitted Matushka Thekla Hatfield, in an evening where she shared the Hatfield family story with the women of the St. Juliana Society at St. Vladimir's. The Society supports future clergy wives through special presentations, and Mat. Thekla's talk about the years she and Chancellor/CEO The Very Rev. Dr. Chad Hatfield have ministered together in locations around the world, is always a favorite.

Matushka recalled their five years of teaching, preaching, and raising small children in South Africa, during the dangerous era of apartheid and unrest. She remarked that God's grace was always with her as she began to learn to deal with people of diverse backgrounds and persuasions. "In every parish you're going to meet with the same people in different guises," she explained. "You must learn to love the unloveable."

Khouria Krista West: Author, Tailor, Podcaster

Is beauty within the Church optional or essential? What are the origins of Orthodox Christian liturgical vestments, and what is their significance? Khouria Krista West explores the fascinating and colorful world of liturgical vesture in the first comprehensive book on this topic in the English language,  the SVS Press book The Garments of Salvation. In the Fall of 2014, Khouria visited St. Vladimir's for several days, where she spoke to the St. Juliana Society.