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Dear Friend in Christ,Please pray for the repose of the soul of a Priest of the Indonesian Orthodox Church, Fr. Gregory Momongan, who fell asleep in the Lord Wednesday, February 21, at 11:30 pm local time. Fr. Gregory was hit by a truck earlier that day, and was taken to the hospital in a coma, where he reposed.He was struck by a truck while operating his motorcycle, which he used as a taxi in downtown Manado. Fr. Daniel Byantoro–the Dean of the Indonesian Clergy and founder of the Indonesian Orthodox Church–had repeatedly asked him to stop, given the dangers of driving a motorcycle in a congested urban area, but Fr. Gregory felt he had no choice, as he had no other way to provide for his family. Once an Orthodox Christian is ordained as clergy in Indonesia, they are "marked" in that overwhelmingly Muslim society, and are not allowed the opportunities for employment and advancement that most other Indonesians enjoy.Ordained in 2005, Fr. Gregory, 32, leaves behind his young wife Maria and year-old daughter Paskhalita, as well as his parish, St Mary the Theotokos , Manado City, North Sulawesi. Fr. Gregory was the spiritual son of Fr. Daniel Byantoro, the Founder of the Indonesian Orthodox Church, and was especially close to Fr. Daniel, caring for Fr. Daniel's dying mother for several months while Fr. Daniel was in the United States and unable to return to Indonesia.Fr. Daniel will be traveling to Indonesia immediately, cutting short his speaking engagements in the US. There is a pressing financial need to pay outstanding hospital bills, funeral expenses, and to make some long-term provisions for Fr. Gregory's wife, Paskhalita, and infant daughter Maria.*** Please keep Fr. Gregory;s family and parish in your prayers, as well as Fr. Daniel, who has lost a spiritual son and close friend, and the clergy and faithful of the entire Indonesian Orthodox Church.May the Lord have mercy on us sinners.Photo: Fr. Gregory, standing inside St. Mary the Theotokos Parish in Manado, with his wife Maria and some of the parishioners. His daughter, Paskhalita, is on the far left, and his mother and father on the far right.
While I'm sure the need for the family is still real, Fr. Gregory was killed last year. Fr. Daniel Byantoro was able to purchase a home for Mat. Maria and her daughter - IIRC it is right next to the church.
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