On February 2, the Sunday of Zacchæus, with the blessing of His Holiness Kyrill, Patriarch of Moscow & All Russia, while visiting Moscow to take part in the work of the Council of Bishops of the Russian Orthodox Church, His Grace Nicholas, Bishop of Manhattan, celebrated Divine Liturgy Holy Epiphany Diocesan Cathedral in Yelokhovo.
Concelebrating with the vicar of ROCOR’s Eastern American Diocese at Liturgy were cathedral rector Archpriest Alexander Ageykin and local clergy, as well as diocesan clerics accompanying His Grace: Archpriest Alexandre Antchoutine (dean of Long Island & the Hudson Valley) and Priest Jonah Campbell (rector of Christ the Savior Church in Wayne, WV).
The cathedral was filled with worshippers, and many of the faithful communed of Christ’s Holy Mysteries.
Upon completion of Liturgy, Bishop Nicholas addressed the faithful with a sermon on the Sunday Gospel reading and then greeted the rector Fr. Alexander, thanking him for his invitation and presenting him with an icon of Venerable John of Damascus. His Grace noted that Great Lent lies ahead, which will lead the faithful to Christ’s Holy Pascha, during the radiant days of which we will hear the Paschal Canon, whose author was St. John.
Bishop Nicholas then led the clergy in serving a moleben before the Kazan Icon of the Mother of God and to the Holy Hierarchs Alexis and Macarius of Moscow, whose relics repose in the cathedral; after this, the clergy and faithful then went in procession around the cathedral, where a panihida was served behind the altar at the grave of Protopresbyter Matthew Stadnyuk (rector of Yelokhovo Cathedral until 2013) on the occasion of the ninth day of the latter’s repose.
Fr. Alexander then invited His Grace and the delegates accompanying him to a fraternal luncheon, during which Bishop Nicholas’ interaction with the clergy continued.