NOVO-DIVEEVO, NY: August 4, 2015
Holy Dormition Convent marks the feast day of St Seraphim Church
On the eve of the feast day of St Seraphim of Sarov, July 31, 2015, His Eminence Metropolitan Hilarion of Eastern America and New York, First Hierarch of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia, led the all-night vigil at Novo-Diveevo Holy Dormition Convent in Nanuet, NY. He was joined by His Eminence Metropolitan Jonah, Mitred Protopriest Alexander Fedorowski, and a host of clergymen.
During the polyeleos, an akathist was read to the heavenly protector of the church and convent, after which the worshipers, venerating the icon of St Seraphim, received the blessing of the First Hierarch, who anointed them with oil.
On the feast day of St Seraphim of Sarov, August 1, 2015, Fr Alexander, Protopriest Yaroslav Belikov, Protopriest George Zelenin, Protopriest Oleg Shulgin, HIeromonk Photios (Ulanov), Priest Nikolai Gulin and Hieromonk Tikhon (Gayfudinov) welcomed the arrival of two metropolitans. The prayerful mood was enhanced by the remarkable decorum of the service of Protodeacon Sergei Arlievsky, Deacon George Temidis and Hierodeacon Panteleimon.
During the reading of the hours, Metropolitan Hilarion received as a novice into the convent the servant of God Evdokia (Pankova), blessing her to wear the cassock and epimandylion.
A multitude of pilgrims filled the church and prayed under the pious singing of the church choir. In his sermon, Vladyka Hilarion noted the importance of St Seraphim for not only the Russian Church, but the Universal Church as a whole, and commented on the veneration of his ascetic life in our daily lives.
After a procession of the cross, Metropolitan Hilarion thanked Fr Alexander, the clergymen, nuns, singers and everyone who gathered to pray on this day.
All the worshipers were then invited to a magnificent trapeza luncheon given at the cafeteria of the Old Peoples’ Home located on the convent premises. The hierarchs then held a separate discussion with the monastics of the Convent.
Fr Alexander invited the two metropolitans to Dormition Church, the first church of the convent, where the portrait of St Seraphim painted directly from life is kept. It was brought to the convent by Protopresbyter Adrian Rymarenko, the convent’s founder, who later became Archbishop Andrei. Fr Alexander also discussed the history of other relics kept in Holy Dormition Church. The hierarchs piously venerated them and thanked Fr Alexander.