AUSTRALIAN DIOCESE: November 8, 2003


The First Hierarch Ends His Visit to Australia at the 50th Anniversary Celebration of the Parish of the Mother of God "Joy of All Who Sorrow" in Geelong

The visit of the Harbin Icon of the Mother of God "Joy of All Who Sorrow" and the First Hierarch of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia to Australia will long remain unforgotten. They infused great joy and an elevated spirituality to church life.

The feast day of St. John of Kronstadt was celebrated by the First Hierarch and by His Eminence Archbishop Hilarion of the Diocese of Australia and New Zealand at divine services at Dormition Church in Dandegong, Victoria.

On Saturday evening, 1 November, and Sunday, 2 November, the bishops served at the new Protection Cathedral in Melbourne, one of the most beautiful churches in Australia. After Melbourne, Vladyka Metropolitan and Vladyka Hilarion returned to Croydon, where Archbishop Hilarion's namesday was celebrated on 3 November.

The archpastors marked the holiday of the Kazan Icon of the Mother of God (4 November) at the Kazan Convent of Novoye Sharmordino, near Sydney, Kentlyn. A multitude of clergymen, and many laypersons of the Australian Diocese, participated in all the services, in Melbourne, Croydon and Kentlyn.

The First Hierarch and Vladyka Hilarion returned to Victoria to mark the 50th anniversary of the Parish of the Mother of God "Joy of All Who Sorrow" in Geelong. Before vigil, the warden of the church, Pavel Vasilievich Paramonov, greeted Vladyka Metropolitan at the narthex, under the newly-gilded cupolas. Joining the bishops at services were Protopriests Michael Protopopov, Nikolai Karipoff, Alexander Morozov, Nicholas Dalinkeiwicz, Gabriel Makarov, Peter Sheko, George Lapardin, Hieromonk Peter (Serbian Orthodox Church), the Rector of the church, Priest Simeon Kichakov, Priest Nicolas de Carleton, Protodeacons Joseph Jaroschuk, Peter Metlenko, Basil Yakimov and Deacon Basil Kozulin. The Secretary of the Australian Diocese, Protopriest Michael Boikov, led the choir. The choir included other clergymen: Hieromonk John from Gethsemane Convent, Protodeacon Herman Polorotov and Deacon Alexander Abramoff.

During the minor entrance, Fr. Simeon Kichakoff was awarded the skufia, and Deacon Basil Kozulin was elevated to Protodeacon. At the end of liturgy, all present were given printed copies of the Harbin Icon of the Mother of God. The icons were a gift to the parishioners of Geelong from Priest Boris Ignatievsky.

A brief history of the parish was read in two languages during the trapeza. All participants of the celebration were given a jubilee medal, and the First Hierarch and Archbishop Hilarion were given commemorative albums.

The Geelong parish produced many clergymen for the Australian Diocese over the years. This was evidenced by the priests who had come from the parish who were present. The Metropolitan's protodeacon, Fr. Joseph Jaroschuk, also spoke. he said that the three weeks spent in Australian Diocese were for him most joyful--everywhere the Metropolitan was greeted with genuine love and warmth.

The following day, the First Hierarch, Protodeacon Joseph Jaroschuk and Reader Nicholas Olhovsky departed for Los Angeles.

Most-Holy Mother of God save our First Hierarch!

Protodeacon Basil Yakimov

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