Feast Day of the Russian Church at the Residence of Bishop Ambroise
On December 4/17, the day of St Barbara, the church dedicated to that saint in Vevey, Switzerland, celebrated its feast day. It was built by Count Petr Shuvalov in memory of his daughter, Barbara, who had died young; it was consecrated in 1878. Divine Liturgy was celebrated this day by the clergymen of various Swiss parishes: Protopriest Pavel Tsvetkov (Geneva), Priest Peter Sturm (Zurich and Basel), Priest Adrain Ecchevarria (Geneva) and Protodeacon Michael Verna (Lausanne and Vevey).
The long-time Rector of the Church, His Grace Bishop Ambroise, prayed and communed of the Divine Gifts in the altar. His Grace had recently returned from the hospital after two difficult operations, and is continuing his recuperation.
The feast day drew the usual large number of worshipers from various cities of Switzerland. Several dozen of them partook of the Holy Mysteries as well.
His Grace delivered a brief sermon on the role of patron saints—the heavenly protectors—of parish churches.
One phase of the restoration project of the Church of Great Martyr Barbara was completed in time for its feast day. The scaffolding which had stood for several months were removed, and at the end of Divine Liturgy, the worshippers were able to conduct a procession of the cross around the new, brilliant-white walls of the 127-year-old church.
A festal trapeza, held at a nearby hotel, was attended by the clergymen, the multi-national flock of the Vevey parish and many visitors.