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DIVEEVO: May 17, 2012
A Delegation of the Russian Church Abroad Participates in Divine Services at St Seraphim-Diveevo Monastery

On May 17, 2012, the three-day visit to the Nizhny Novgorod Metropoliate by a delegation of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia continued. The delegation consists of His Eminence Metropolitan Hilarion of Eastern America and New York, First Hierarch of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia; His Eminence Archbishop Mark of Berlin and Germany, Vice President of ROCORs Synod of Bishops; His Eminence Archbishop Michael of Geneva and Western Europe and other clergymen. Representing the Moscow Patriarchate was His Eminence Archbishop Innokenty of Vilnius and Lithuania.

A moleben and akathist were served at Holy Trinity Cathedral of St Seraphim-Diveevo Convent early in the morning, after which Divine Liturgy was celebrated. The services were headed by Metropolitan Hilarion, who was joined by His Eminence Metropolitan Georgy of Nizhny Novgorod and Arzamas; Archbishop Mark; Archbishop Michael and Archbishop Innokenty. Praying at the services were Abbess Sergiya (Konkova), the convents nuns and a multitude of pilgrims and parishioners.

Afterwards, Abbess Sergiya thanked the hierarchs for their visit and services, wished them Divine aid in their archpastoral efforts and gave each of them a gift of a prosphora and a Paschal egg hand-painted with views of Diveevo.

This day marked the fifth anniversary of the signing in Moscow of the Act of Canonical Communion between the Moscow Patriarchate and the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia. In connection with this jubilee, Metropolitan Georgy, in his archpastoral sermon, reminded everyone that during the militantly-atheist period, the devil was able to divide the Russian Orthodox Church into two parts. Today is very important, as we mark the fifth anniversary of the reestablishment of Canonical communion between our Churches. On this day we prayerfully recall His Holiness the late Patriarch Alexy II of Moscow and All Russia and Metropolitan Laurus of Eastern America and New York. On the feast day of the Ascension of the Lord on May 4/17, 2007, on the ambo of Christ the Savior Cathedral, they executed the Act with their signatures, and then jointly celebrated Divine Liturgy. We also thank those who labored and brought this unity forward, including Archbishop Mark, who is with us today, said the head of the Metropoliate of Nizhny Novgorod.

Congratulating everyone in attendance on this important event, he gave Metropolitan Hilarion an icon of St Seraphim of Sarov with a portion of his relics. Let this icon and the spirit of St Seraphim console you and bring you joy, and may faith, hope and love abide in your hearts, said Metropolitan Georgy. The other visitors were also given icons of St Seraphim.

In his response, the First Hierarch of the Russian Church Abroad noted that it gave him great pleasure to be in Diveevo Convent, and thanked Abbess Sergiya for her hospitality. Every time I come to Russia I find churches and monasteries begin reborn, just as the Orthodox faith is returning to life. Rising from the ruins, Diveevo Convent is a clear example of this, and it now clearly demonstrates how Russia treats the Orthodox faith, stressed Metropolitan Hilarion.

He gave the archpastor of Nizhny Novgorod and the abbess ancient icons: to Vladyka Georgy an image of the Annunciation of the Most-Holy Mother of God, and to Abbess Sergiya, an icon of the Ascension of the Lord. May these icons remind you of our visits and help you throughout your lives, said Vladyka Hilarion.

Official website of the Diocese of Nizhny Novgorod. Text by Alexandra Frolova and Andrei Rikavishnikov.

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