After celebrating Divine Liturgy on Sunday, 18 September, 2022, at the Synodal Cathedral of Our Lady "of the Sign" in New York, and having recevied the archpastoral staff from Metropolitan Mark of Berlin and Germany, His Eminence Metropolitan Nicholas of Eastern America and New York thanked the Council of Bishops for their attention, support and trust:
"We in the Russian Church Abroad constitute a particular hierarchal family. We can sense the catholicity between us. I am grateful to Bishop Longin that you were able to share with us in the celebrations today as a representative of the Serbian Patriarch and the Serbian Church. We will never forget the love shown to our forebears by the Serbian Patriarch and the whole Serbian people in our time of greatest need - you received and sheltered us - our people and our great holy Kursk Root Icon.
"I am also glad that Archbishop Victor is with us. We prayed together in Kiev and Odessa, and I am overjoyed that you were able to share in the celebration today. We ask that you relay to His Beatitude Metropolitan Onufry, the episcopate of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, its clergy and faithful children our shared prayer.
"We have here a special cathedral – the headquarters of the Synod of Bishops, the center of our Church. But the foremost thing here is the altar and temple of God. Our forebears prayed here, celebrated the feasts and solemn occasions. One such event took place in 1964, when they glorified Fr John of Kronstadt here. His holy icon is in our church, as is his riassa. We pray to Fr John that he pray and intercede for us before God.
"In his book My Life in Christ, we are presented with Fr John’s thoughts. Try to read this book – there you will find his most excellent words! Fr John of Kronstadt writes: ‘Be a Christian in heart - that is, be always sincere in prayer, in your relations with your neighbor, ever believing, trusting, meek, gentle, wishing well to everybody, just, not covetous, compassionate, merciful, abstinent, chaste, patient, obedient, courageous.’
"These words touch me deeply, and I want for them to influence you, as well. This is our Christian duty – to pray for one another, to respect and love one another."
Metropolitan Nicholas then called upon the faithful to be true to the legacy of the Russian Church Abroad, never forgetting our roots.