Welcome to the Orthodox Church of St. Stephen the Protomartyr!
For the last thirty years Kyriacos C. Markides has been exploring the lives and teachings of Christian sages and healers around the world. In his latest book Inner River: A Pilgrimage to the Heart of Christian Spirituality (Random House/Image Books 2012) he continues his exploration of Christian spirituality through his participant observation work with charismatic monks, hermits and celebrated living saints of Eastern Christianity. He has shown that there is a distinct experiential spiritual path within Christianity that many westerners assumed existed only in Hinduism and Buddhism. He will expose us to this mystical Christian spirituality that has been practiced for hundreds of years in ancient monasteries and convents, yet is little known to Western seekers. We will explore this tradition in depth and explore its relevance for contemporary living. We will examine topics such as the way to know God according to the teachings of the great Christian saints; the attainment of an inner silence as a prerequisite for an experiential knowledge of God; the obstacles that prevent us from knowing God; the spiritual laws that govern human existence; the nature of the “gifts of the Holy Spirit” as outlined by St. Paul; the destiny of the human soul; and the different stages one must go through before attaining union with God. We will learn about the power of prayer and how to protect ourselves from negative thought forms. Professor Markides will also share his experiences during several pilgrimages to Eastern Christian sacred centers, such as Mount Athos and the Monastery of St. Catherine in the Sinai Desert.
Kyriacos C. Markides, is a Professor of Sociology at the University of Maine and author of nine books published by leading publishers in the United States and the UK. Six of his books, including “The Mountain of Silence” and “Gifts of the Desert” are on Christian mystics spiritual guides and elders of Eastern Christianity. His books have been translated and published in twelve other countries and languages. He has given regular lectures and workshops around the United States, Canada and overseas and appeared on national and international television and radio programs. His latest book INNER RIVER: A Pilgrimage to the Heart of Christian Spirituality has just been published by Random House/Image Books. Professor Markides is the recipient in 2002 of the best professor award in Arts and Sciences at the University of Maine and he was awarded the 2006 Presidential Research and Creative Achievement Award of the University of Maine. He lives in Stillwater Maine with his wife Emily J. Markides, Adjunct Assistant Professor of Peace and Reconciliation Studies at the University of Maine.
Stephen Gidus fell asleep in the Lord, peacefully Monday morning. He won his fight to eternal life with the Lord after battling cancer. He was circled in love at the time of his passing with his loving family and close friends. Stephen will have a traditional Christian Orthodox funeral and burial.
The Funeral Vigil for Stephen will be held Thursday October 11 at 6 PM. The viewing and the reading of the Psalter follow. The Church will be open through the night for the reading of the Psalter. Everyone is welcome to help with the reading. The Funeral Liturgy and burial beginning at 9:30 AM on Friday, October 12. There will be a Lenten meal at the church following the burial.A Celebration of Life will be held on Friday, October 12 at 6:00 PM in the Lee Fellowship Hall at First Presbyterian Church at 106 East Church Street, Orlando, FL 32801.
Stephen was well known in the community for his strong faith and family values along with exemplary work ethic. Stephen was a devoted husband to wife, Tara, and father to two young boys, Basil, 5, and Levi, 3. Stephen was a custom home builder. He was in business with his brother, Paul, and owned PSG Construction in Orlando. More recently, he started a consulting business called REMODology and wrote five books for the remodeling construction industry.
Stephen had a passion for running and finished 17 marathons, including the Boston Marathon twice. He and his wife, Tara, ran two marathons on their honeymoon in Paris and London. Stephen had a passion for helping the homeless. He organized a clothing drive for the Coalition of the Homeless in downtown Orlando for twenty years.
The foundation of Stephen’s life was his strong faith. He attended the Orthodox Church of St. Stephen in Longwood, where he was a reader and active on the building committee and parish council. He went on several mission trips to Guatemala, Africa, and Mexico to spread his strong Christian faith. Next to his faith, his family was the most important thing to him. Along with his wife and sons, he is survived by his father and mother, Tim and Marie Gidus, and his siblings Ann Marie Mecera, Paul Gidus, and James Gidus along with their spouses and seven nieces and nephews.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to one of the following: Orthodox Church of St. Stephen (address above), the Coalition for the Homeless of Central Florida, 639 West Central Blvd. Orlando, FL 32801, or to First Presbyterian Church of Orlando (address above). The money donated to First Presbyterian will be allocated to the daycare and preschool that Stephen’s sons attend. In all donations please note: In Memory of Stephen Gidus. Dobbs Funeral Home has been entrusted with arrangements.
Please keep the Gidus family in your prayers! May God grant the Servant of God, Stephen, Memory Eternal!
On Monday we celebrate the Protection of the Mother of God. In the tenth century, the city of Constantinople was being invaded by pagan tribes from the North. During an All-night Vigil, St. Andrew of Constantinople, along with his disciple, St. Epiphanius, and others, saw the Mother of God, St. John the Baptist, and a host of Saints and angels at the city gates. The Mother of God made her way to the center of the Church at Blachernae, where her robe, veil, and part of her belt had been kept since the fifth century. She knelt and prayed for a long time. When she arose, she took off her veil and spread it over the people as a sign of protection. The invaders turned back and the Christians were saved from harm.
Dear St. Stephen Family,
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