His Eminence Metropolitan Laurus and the Members of the Synod of Bishops Visit St Nicholas Patriarchal Cathedral
On December 8, at the invitation of Bishop Mercurius of Zaraisk, Administrator of Patriarchal Parishes in the USA, the First Hierarch of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia, His Eminence Metropolitan Laurus, and the members of the Synod of Bishops visited the Representation of the Moscow Patriarchate in the USA in New York City.
His Eminence Metropolitan Laurus and his accompanying archpastors and clergymen examined the interior of the Cathedral, venerated its holy items, which include a reliquary containing a portion of the relics of saints given to this Cathedral during its founding over a hundred years ago. The First Hierarch of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia, viewing the splendid Cathedral of St Nicholas, recently renovated to its former glory, kissed the altar table cross, a gift from the crews of the legendary Russian navy ships "Varyag" and "Retvizan," which gained their glory during the Russo-Japanese War of 1904-5. His Eminence also venerated the holy items connected to the service in America of St Tikhon, the future Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia.
Bishop Mercurius of Zaraisk greeted the head of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia and his delegation at the Cathedral. Bishop Mercurius told the visitors of the century-old history of the Cathedral, its renovation and the tasks facing the Representation of the Moscow Patriarchate in the USA. During the fraternal meal, Bishop Mercurius relayed the words of His Holiness Patriarch Alexy of Moscow and All Russia to the delegation, in which were expressed the hope that with Divine help, the tragic divisions within the Russian Church would soon be overcome.
His Eminence was accompanied by His Eminence Archbishop Mark of Berlin and Germany, His Eminence Archbishop Kyrill of San Francisco and Western America, Bishop Michael of Boston and Bishop Peter of Cleveland, Protopriest Andrei Sommer, Priest Serafim Gan and Priest Joakim Provatakis and Subdeacon Nicholas Olhovsky.
Participating in the meeting on behalf of the Moscow Patriarchate were the Secretary of the Representative of the Moscow Patriarchate in the USA, Priest Alexander Abramov; Secretary to the Administrator of the Patriarchal Parishes in the USA, Hieromonk Joseph (Krioukov), and clergyman of St Nicholas Cathedral, Protodeacon Igor Panachev.