On Sunday the 17th and Monday the 18th of November, the feast day of the Holy Hierarch and Confessor Tikhon’s election to the Patriarchal Throne, St. Tikhon of Moscow Church in Bristol, VA, celebrated its patronal feast day and the 20th anniversary of the parish’s founding.
Leading the divine services in honor of the feast was His Grace, Eastern American Diocesan vicar Bishop Nicholas of Manhattan, who brought with him the wonderworking Kursk Root Icon of the Mother of God for veneration by the many parishioners and visitors who were in attendance.
On Sunday evening, Bishop Nicholas led the All-Night Vigil, co-served by parish rector Archpriest Matthew Williams and visiting clergy: Archpriest Christopher Stanton (OCA cleric), Archpriest Mark Tyson (rector of Holy Prophet Elijah Mission in Pigeon Forge, TN), Priest Eugene Antonov (rector of Our Lady "Joy of All Who Sorrow" Church in Atlanta, GA), and Protodeacon Jeremiah Davis (cleric of Christ the Savior Church in Wayne, WV).
On Monday, morning, following the Blessing of Water (served by Fr. Eugene), Hierarchal Liturgy was celebrated by the above-mentioned clergy, joined by Archpriest Onouphry Keith (rector of St. Nicholas Mission in King, NC), Archpriest Job Watts (rector of St. Nektarios Church in Lenoir City, TN), Priest Michael Furry (St. Innocent Bulgarian Mission in Roanoke, VA), and Priest Gabriel Weller (rector of Holy Myrrhbearers Church in Harrisonburg, VA). Also praying in church was Priest Stephen Mathewes (rector of Christ the Savior Greek Church in Bluff City, TN).
Following Liturgy, Fr. Matthew presented Bishop Nicholas with an icon of St. Tikhon in commemoration of the parish’s anniversary. In addition to its presence at the services, His Grace blessed for the Kursk Root Icon to be taken to many of the parishioners’ homes.
Bishop Nicholas also informally gave several gifts to the parish, most notably an altar cross that was originally a namesday gift to Archpriest Gabriel Kin from St. Nicholas Parish in Red Bank, NJ on April 8, 1984.
In parting, Bishop Nicholas offered words of congratulation and encouragement to Fr. Matthew and the parishioners.