On Saturday the 6th and Sunday the 7th of January, the brethren of Holy Trinity Monastery in Jordanville, NY celebrated the great feast of the Nativity of Christ. Leading the divine services was monastery abbot Archimandrite Luke (Murianka), co-served by the monastery and seminary clergy.
On Monday the 8th and Tuesday the 9th of January, Bishop Nicholas of Manhattan paid an archpastoral visit to the monastery. On Monday, upon arrival at the holy habitation, His Grace served Vespers & Matins in the cathedral.
On Tuesday – the third day of the feast of Christ’s Nativity – Bishop Nicholas celebrated Divine Liturgy, co-served by local clergy. Also concelebrating were Archpriests Serge Kotar and Boris Henderson (clerics of the Western American Diocese), currently visiting the monastery.
During the Sixth Hour, Reader Nicholas Kotar was ordained a subdeacon, and later at the same service was ordained to the diaconate. After the Great Entrance, Deacon Sergei Kosov was ordained a priest. Both clerics will fulfill their service at Holy Trinity Monastery.
The choir of monks and seminarians beautifully adorned the service. Hieromonk Anatoly (Zilin) read aloud the Nativity Epistle of His Holiness, Patriarch Kyrill. Prior to the dismissal, a moleben was served to the Holy Protomartyr & Archdeacon Stephen, whose memory the Church celebrates that day.
After the dismissal, Bishop Nicholas congratulated Fr. Luke, the clergy, brethren, and faithful with the radiant feast of Christ’s Nativity. Addressing those gathered, His Grace said that "we must always remember that Christ became man in order to save man. He was born, walked on this earth, worked miracles, died, arose on the third day, and ascended to Heaven. It does not matter what difficulties we encounter on our life’s path: we must never forget that the Lord also lived on this earth. He is our hope and salvation. And we must always take care to ensure that Christ the Savior abides in our life."
Bishop Nicholas congratulated the newly ordained clergy – Priest Sergei Kosov and Deacon Nicholas Kotar – wishing them God’s blessing and spiritual fortitude, that they might faithfully serve and manfully defend the Orthodox Faith and the Holy Gospel, as did the Holy Protomartyr Stephen.
In his concluding remarks, Bishop Nicholas noted that it was a great joy for him personally to serve at the monastery, and presented the habitation with a Dormition shroud.
Upon completion of the service, all made their way to a festal luncheon. Prior to departing for New York City, His Grace visited the neighboring St. Elizabeth Skete, where he congratulated the sisters with the feast of Christ’ Nativity.