The Final Days of the Visit of Archbishop Evgenii of Verey to the USA


On October 26, after a visit to Holy Trinity Seminary in Jordanville and the Synod of Bishops of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia in New York, Archbishop Evgenii of Verey, the Rector of Moscow Theological Academy and Seminary and the President of the Scholarly Committee of the Holy Synod of the Moscow Patriarchate, departed for Alaska along with Hieromonk Evfimii, a teacher at Moscow Theological Academy. There Bishop Nikolai (Orthodox Church of America) greeted the guests together with Deacon Vladimir Tsurikov, Deputy Dean of Holy Trinity Seminary in Jordanville. The visitors were taken to the Cathedral of St Innocent in Anchorage for a moleben and a meeting with the local clergy at a ceremonial dinner.

On the morning of October 27, Archbishop Evgenii, Bishop Nikolai, Hieromonk Evfimii, Priest Daniel Andreuk, Archdeacon Isidor and Deacon Vladimir Tsurikov flew to Kodiak and from there embarked by boat to Elovy Island, where St Herman of Alaska lived. At Resurrection Cathedral in Kodiak, an evening akathist to St Herman was served, headed by Archbishop Evgenii along with the local clergymen. The crypt containing the relics of the saint was opened for veneration.

A luncheon meeting was held on October 28 within the walls of St Herman's Seminary between the teachers and students of the Seminary and the guests. Bishop Nikolai, Rector of St Herman's Seminary, introduced the visitors, after which he offered the floor to Archbishop Evgenii, who told the seminarians and other present about life at the Moscow Theological schools and of the state of spiritual education in the Russian Orthodox Church. At the conclusion, Archbishop Evgenii gave St Herman's Seminary Library several books published by Moscow Theological Academy, and thanked Bishop Nikolai for his hospitality. Deacon Vladimir Tsurikov, on behalf of the Rector of Holy Trinity Seminary in Jordanville, His Eminence Metropolitan Laurus, greeted Bishop Nikolai, the teachers and seminarians, and also gave their library some books published at Holy Trinity Monastery and Seminary.

After a visit to a missionary parish in Eklutna and Sunday services at the Anchorage Cathedral, Archbishop Evgenii and the clergymen escorting him departed for San Francisco at the invitation of His Eminence Archbishop Kyrill of Western America and San Francisco, where they are to venerate the incorruptible relics of St John the Wonderworker of Shanghai and San Francisco (Maximovich, +1966). The pilgrims were met at the airport by Protopriest Peter Perekrestov, Protopriest Sergei Kotar and Protodeacon Nicholas Triantafillidis with his family. The first meeting between Archbishop Kyrill was held during a generous dinner given at the home of Protopriest Sergei Kotar.

The following morning, November 2, the travelers prayed at liturgy at the Cathedral of the Mother of God "Joy of All Who Sorrow," at which a local quartet sang. At the end of divine liturgy, Protopriest Yaroslav Belikow and Archdeacon Andronik (Taratuchin) served a moleben at the reliquary of St John, after which Archbishop Kyrill once again welcomed the guests and presented a set of minor archpastoral vestments to Archbishop Evgenii, and to Hieromonk Evfimii, an epitrachelion with cuffs. A visit to the old Russian stronghold, Fort Ross, followed a visit to the Cathedral kindergarten—Vladyka Evgenii was accompanied by Protopriest Stefan Pavlenko and Protopriest Peter Perekrestov, Hieromonk Evfimi, Deacon Vladimir Tsurikov and Deacon Dmitri Yakimovich. The final farewell meeting with Archbishop Kyrill was held that evening at the residence of Vladyka Kyrill.

Early in the morning on November 3, Archbishop Evgenii and Hieromonk Evfimii flew to Los Angelese, where they were met by Protopriest Alexander Lebedeff, who showed his guests the local holy sites, and from there they departed to Moscow that day.

Deacon Vladimir Tsurikov