MOUNT CARMEL - St. Michael's Orthodox Church in Mount Carmel has been selected to host the Lenten Vespers for the Fifth Sunday of Great Lent. The vespers will be held at 4 p.m. Sunday at St. Michael's Orthodox Church, 131 N. Willow St.

On the fifth Sunday of Great Lent, the Orthodox celebrate St. Mary of Egypt on the Sunday of repentance because she represents what it means to repent. The Orthodox are challenged to continue to improve themselves through prayer and actions to help one anorther.

The main celebrant for these vespers will be the Very Rev. Father Michael Hatrak, pastor of SS Peter and Paul Orthodox Church in Minersville and Assumption of the Virgin Mary Orthodox Church in Saint Clair. Hatrak also serves as the dean of the Frackville Deanery, Diocese of Philadelphia and Eastern Pennsylvania of the Orthodox Church in America.

The guest preacher will be the Rev. Father Stephen Vernak, pastor of Christ The Saviour Orthodox Church in Harrisburg. The parish a cappella choir will sing the responses and lead the faithful in singing the special verses.

Following the services, a light Lenten supper prepared by the parish will be served in the church social hall for all those in attendance. Everyone is invited and will be most welcomed in participating in the Lenten journey.

During the Great Lent, Orthodox churches in each deanery have special Sunday Lenten Vespers on late afternoons to intensify the fasting journey of the Lenten period for the faithful. All the deanery priest gather together to serve and offer messages preparing the faithful for the celebration of Pascha, the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. Each year the parishes rotate the schedule.