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JERUSALEM: August 6, 2019
Feast-day celebrations at Russian Gethsemanes St Mary Magdalene, Equal-to-the-Apostles Church

On Sunday, August 4, 2019, the Russian Convent in Gethsemane, Jerusalem, festively celebrated the feast day of St Mary Magdalene, Equal-to-the-Apostles. On the eve, all-night vigil was performed by His Eminence Archbishop Mark of Berlina and Germany, Overseer of the Russian Ecclesiastical Mission in Jerusalem. He was joined by His Grace Bishop Theodosius of Seattle, Vicar of the Western American Diocese of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia, and Archimandrite Roman (Krassovsky), Chief of the Mission of ROCOR. Other mission clergymen also participated, as did clerics from America and Ukraine who are making a pilgrimage to the Holy Land.

On Sunday morning, the church was filled to capacity by pilgrims and local Orthodox Christians there to venerate the memory of St Mary. Before Liturgy, the rite of the blessing of the waters was performed.

His Beatitude Patriarch Theophilos of Jerusalem and All Palestine arrived after Liturgy, and led a procession of the cross around the church. His Beatitude then congratulated Archbishop Mark and Bishop Theodosius, Fr Roman, the clergymen and all the worshipers on the convents feast day. Patriarch Theophilos then gave Vladyka Mark a gift of a mother-of-pearl altar-table cross.

His Beatitude then blessed Abbess Elizabeth (Smelic), wishing her Divine aid and the strength to continue the obedience of heading the convent bestowed upon her.

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