The Divine Liturgy and opening ceremony for the St. Matrona Sewing Center in Sargodha, Pakistan were celebrated on October 29, with the blessing of His Eminence Metropolitan Hilarion (Kapral), the First Hierarch of the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad. The St. Matrona Adult Education Center was founded in March 2016 as an outreach of St. Michael the Archangel Orthodox Mission to local poor women, reports the Archangel Michael Mission in Pakistan.
The day’s celebrations were a moment of joy and success for the women of the St. Matrona Adult Education and Sewing Center. During the inauguration ceremony, Fr. Joseph Farooq extended heartfelt thanks to all of the mission’s generous donors, who made the center and the day’s event possible.
Poor Christian families and children are being affected by the extreme poverty and lack of income opportunities. The center’s aim is to provide help to Christian women by enabling them to learn sewing skills to help them earn an independent living. The St. Michael Mission, under Fr. Joseph’s guidance, also encourages young women to learn to read and write themselves, and provides them with an awareness of Orthodox Tradition and Orthodox Christian family values.
Last year, some 15 young dropouts and a few mothers were admitted to the St. Matrona Education Center, including Nasreen Fevronia, a mother of five.
The center’s goals are to enable the women to learn to read and write; to teach them about Orthodox Tradition and prayers and family values, helping them to remain steadfast in their faith in the Islamic state of Pakistan; to teach them teamwork, for solving real life problems; to teach further skills such as sewing, embroidery, and handicrafts; and to foster confidence, trust, and determination to help them deal with the difficulties and hardships of their daily lives. Upon successful completion of the one-year training course, the women will each receive a sewing machine.
Women in Pakistan are routinely denied their human rights, including that of education, and to decide matters relating to their marriages and divorce. Women are discriminated against from birth to death, and are often trafficked and subjected to forced marriages.
The ROCOR Mission in Pakistan strongly believes that prayer and faith are the two main factors in the development and progress of any work and this faith leads to the sharing of the love of Christ and the treasures of holy Orthodoxy in Pakistan.
As St. Matrona of Moscow comforted and spiritually strengthened the Russian faithful during the Communist regime, the Pakistani mission believes she will become a source of spiritual encouragement for the nation’s suffering Christians in Pakistan.
Humble Request for Donations:
Your generosity makes it possible for Fr. Joseph Farooq to preach holy Orthodoxy in the most difficult region of South East Asia. He reaches out to communities, families, and children in desperate need, bringing the light of Christ to the darkest of circumstances. Funds are distributed from the ROCOR Fund For Assistance and directly distributed to the mission.
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