SYNOD OF BISHOPS: October 27, 2004

Archbishop Evgenii of Verey Visits the Synod of Bishops and Holy Sites of the Eastern American Diocese

At the invitation of His Eminence Metropolitan Laurus, the Rector of Holy Trinity Seminary in Jordanville, the President of the Education Committee of the Moscow Patriarchate and Rector of Moscow Theological Academy, Archbishop Evgenii of Verey, arrived on October 21, 2004. That day, His Eminence Metropolitan Laurus welcomed Vladyka Evgenii in his residence at Holy Trinity Monastery. The Dean of the Seminary, Archimandrite Luke (Murianka), and the Assistant Dean, Deacon Vladimir Tsurikov, were also present. It was noted that the visit of Archbishop Evgenii to Jordanville was the first visit by a bishop of the Moscow Patriarchate to the ecclesio-theological center of the Russian Church Abroad.

From October 22-23, Archbishop Evgenii, along with Hieromonk Evfimii (Moiseev), a teacher of Moscow Theological Academy, participated in the conference entitled "Holy Trinity-St Sergius Lavra in Russian History and Culture," hosted by Holy Trinity Seminary in Jordanville. Archbishop Evgenii read a lecture on the 190th anniversary of the existence of Moscow Theological Academy within the walls of the "great cell of the Hegumen of the Russian Land" [St Sergius of Radonezh]. His Grace Bishop Peter of Cleveland officiated at the monastery services.

On Monday, October 25, Archbishop Evgenii, accompanied by Hieromonk Evfimii and Deacon Vladimir Tsurikov, visited St Alexander Nevsky Cathedral in Lakewood, NJ, where he was greeted by Protopriest Sergei Lukianov of that Cathedral and by Synodal Protodeacon Eugene Burbelo. Showing the holy icons of the Cathedral and of Tikhvin Church, on the property of the Cathedral, Fr Sergei invited the guests to lunch, during which the clergymen were able to spend some time with Vladyka Evgenii. Bidding goodbye to Fr Sergei, the visitors headed for the Memorial Church of St Vladimir on "Vladimir Hill" in Jackson, NJ, where they venerated the crypts in the lower church of Archbishop Vitaly (Maximenko, +1960) and Archbishop Nikon (Rklitsky, +1976), and walked through the local cemetery.

That evening, Archbishop Evgenii went to New York, where His Eminence Metropolitan Laurus and the members of the Synod of Bishops hosted a dinner in honor of the visitors at the Synodal hall, organized by the Cathedral Sisterhood headed by T.V. Galitzine. During the trapeza luncheon, His Eminence Metropolitan Laurus, Archbishop Mark of Berlin and Germany and Archbishop Kyrill of San Francisco and Western America expressed their greetings to Archbishop Evgenii. Bishop Gabriel of Manhattan greeted the First Hierarch, wishing His Eminence God's help in his difficult service. Protopriest Alexander Lebedeff, the Secretary of the Committee on discussions with the Moscow Patriarchate, noted that the third anniversary of the election of His Eminence Metropolitan Laurus as the First Hierarch of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia was fast approaching, expressing heartfelt congratulations on behalf of the priests present. Protopriest Andrei Sommer, the Senior Priest of the Synodal Cathedral, presented Vladyka Evgenii and Fr Evfimii with icons of St John (Maximovich, +1966) as gifts from the Cathedral's priests.

The following morning, Archbishop Evgenii and Hieromonk Evfimii, Priest Serafim Gan and Deacon Vladimir Tsurikov visited Holy Virgin Protection Church in Nyack, where Mitred Protopriest George Larin has been Rector for 35 years. He warmly greeted Vladyka and showed the visitors his church, the library, the parish school and the large parish hall. Vladyka also visited the nursery which is held every Tuesday at the parish. The rector then offered them lunch, prepared by his matushka, E.Yu. Larina, after which Protopriest Alexander Fedorowsky welcomed the guests at Novo-Diveevo Stavropighial Convent. Here the guests venerated the portrait of St Seraphim of Sarov, painted during the holy man's lifetime, and other holy icons of this convent, which was founded by Protopresbyter Adrian Rymarenko (later Archbishop Andrei of Rockland), a spiritual child of Elder Nektarii of Optina; they also viewed the monastery cemetery, where famous ecclesiastical and societal figures of the Russian diaspora are buried, and visited the large Russian nursing home.

At 4 o'clock, the Director of the famous New York Public Library, one of the largest libraries in the world, together with the Director of the Slavic Department and other colleagues of the Library welcomed His Eminence Metropolitan Laurus, Archbishop Mark, Archbishop Evgenii, Bishop Michael, Protopriests Alexander Lebedeff, Protopriest Nikolai Artemoff and Protopriest Andrei Sommer, Reader Nicholas Olhovsky, the cell-attendant of the First Hierarch, and others. The visitors were shown the technology of the Library, its the Reading Room, explained sponsor financing and showed them the Library's holdings. They showed them a few exhibitions, and also showed how they were able to expand their holdings with limited space. A small exhibit was organized especially for the visit, at which, in part, were shown very rare photographs of Holy Trinity Lavra of the second half of the 19th century, and also descriptions of Carpathian Russia, the homeland of His Eminence Metropolitan Laurus. In addition, materials from the archives of Elizabeth Hapgood were shown, consisting of correspondence with the Ober-Procurator of the Holy Synod, K.P. Pobedonostsev, and with many other bishops of the Russian Church. Letters written by St Patriarch Tikhon were shown, along with an album sent to her as a gift for her work in translating liturgical texts into the English language, with a dedication by Royal Martyr Alexandra Feodorovna, and other items. Exhibited also were compendia of other symposia organized at Holy Trinity Seminary in Jordanville. At the reception that followed, the Museum Director gave His Eminence Metropolitan Laurus and Archbishop Evgenii two books of published archival material from the Library. The constructive cooperation between the Library and Holy Trinity-St Serbius Lavra and with Holy Trinity Seminary were noted during the speeches.

That evening a dinner was offered at the Synodal hall, again organized by the Sisterhood, during which His Eminence Metropolitan Laurus, the members of the Synod of Bishops and the clergymen bid farewell to Archbishop Evgenii and Hieromonk Evfimii, who, together with Deacon Vladimir Tsurikov, departed the following day to Alaska, and then on to California, where meetings will be held with His Eminence Archbishop Kyrill of San Francisco and Western America and the clergy of the Cathedral of the Mother of God "Joy of All Who Sorrow" in San Francisco and Holy Transfiguratin Cathedral in Los Angeles, and other parishes of the Diocese.

Metropolitan Laurus greets Archbishop Evgenii at Holy Trinity Monastery.  

Archbishop Evgenii addresses the participants of the Conference after having received the gift of an icon of St Job of Pochaev from Holy Trinity Seminary.