Archbishop Irénée Serves at St Catherine's Podvorie in Moscow

December 7, 2018

On December 7, 2018, the clergy and faithful of the Orthodox Church in America's Representation Church of the Great Martyr Catherine, Moscow, Russia, celebrated their patronal feast.

Representing His Beatitude, Metropolitan Tikhon, at the celebration was His Eminence, Archbishop Irénée of Ottawa and Canada. Presiding at the festal Divine Liturgy was His Eminence, Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk who, together with Archbishop Irénée, concelebrated with His Eminence, Metropolitan Niphon, Representative of the Patriarchate of Antioch to the Russian Orthodox Church; His Grace, Bishop Anthony of Moravic, Representative of the Patriarchate of Serbia to the Russian Orthodox Church; Archimandrite Seraphim, Representative of the Church of the Czech Lands and Slovakia; Protopresbyter Vladimir Divakov, Secretary of the Patriarch of Moscow; Archpriest Leonid Kalinin; Archpriest Archpriest Daniel Andreiuk, Dean of Saint Catherine's Church and OCA Representative to the Russian Orthodox Church; Archpriest Christopher Hill; Priest Nikolai Svetlovsky of Canada; Protodeacon Alexey Trunin; and Deacons Alexander Ershov, Dmitry Asratyan, and Kirill Dotsenko.

Representatives of the US and Canadian embassies - Anthony Godfrey, Deputy Chief of Mission at the US Embassy in Moscow, and Stefan Zhoben, Deputy Head of the Mission of the Canadian Embassy - also were present, as was the Apostolic Nuncio in Russia, Archbishop Celestino Migliore.

After the Divine Liturgy, Metropolitan Hilarion congratulated the parish's clergy and faithful on their patronal feast and shared his fondness for the community, at which he had served from 1996 through 2001. He emphasized how Saint Catherine was a model of tenacity of spirit and loyalty to Christ, and how these same virtues must be manifest in the daily life of all Orthodox Christians.

Archbishop Irénée read greetings from Metropolitan Tikhon. As a memento of the occasion, the clergy and faithful of Saint Catherine's Church presented an icon of Saint Catherine and Saint John of Shanghai and San Francisco to Metropolitan Hilarion. Gramoti signed by Metropolitan Tikhon also were presented to several parish benefactors in gratitude for their dedication to the community.

On December 6, the eve of the feast, the All-Night Vigil and the Akathistos Hymn in honor of Saint Catherine were celebrated by Archbishop Irénée, together with Fathers Daniel and Christopher, Priests Andrei Tregubov and Pavel Zuev, and several deacons.