On Sunday, December 2, when the Orthodox Church celebrates the memory of the Holy Prophet Obadiah and the Holy Hierarch Philaret, Metropolitan of Moscow, Metropolitan Hilarion of Eastern America & New York celebrated Divine Liturgy in the Synodal Cathedral of the Sign in New York City Concelebrating with the First Hierarch of the Russian Church Abroad was Eastern American Diocesan vicar Bishop Nicholas of Manhattan, as well as cathedral clergy: senior priest Archpriest Andrei Sommer, Archpriest Edward Chervinsky, Protodeacon Nicolas Mokhoff, and Deacon Pavel Roudenko.
Liturgy proceeded under the aegis of the Kursk Root Icon of the Mother of God. The holy icon will remain in the Cathedral of the Sign for the divine services on the feast of the Entrance of the Most Holy Theotokos into the Temple on December 3-4, as well as December 9-10 – the eve and very day of the Synodal Cathedral’s patronal feast. On December 12, the icon will depart for the Diocese of Australia & New Zealand, where for two months it will visit the Orthodox churches and monasteries of the Land Down Under.
Praying at the services was a multitude of cathedral parishioners and guests, many of whom confessed and communed of Christ’s Holy Mysteries.
Upon completion of Liturgy, Metropolitan Hilarion addressed the faithful with a sermon. His Eminence said, in part:
"Today’s Gospel reading was instructive for all of us. In it we are told the story of a man who asked the Teacher to help him resolve an issue of inheritance, and to convince his brother to divide with him his portion thereof. And the Savior said: ‘Take heed, and beware of covetousness.’ For the material things that man accumulates in this life mean nothing, but spiritual acquisitions are treasures in Heaven. And the Teacher began to speak a parable about a farmer who had a plentiful harvest one year. He was satisfied, and cried out, ‘Eat, drink, and be merry!’ To this the Lord replied, ‘Thou fool! This night the angels will come and take thy soul. Then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided?’. It is important for us to remember that the most important thing is to gather up treasures that will be eternal in the Heavens: faith, hope, and love. Those who hope on wealth and material blessings, and who do not pay heed to those who are truly in need of help, also pay no heed to preparing their souls for eternity."
His Eminence called on those present to remember this parable by the Savior, fulfilling His commandments and acquiring virtues in hope of life eternal, in order to receive the place prepared for us in God’s Kingdom.
After the service, all we were invited to the church hall for a luncheon, prior to the start of which Metropolitan Hilarion presented a new portrait of Bishop Gregory (Grabbe; +1995) of Washington & Florida, painted by the artist Dimitry Schidlovsky, which will take its place among the portraits of hierarchs of the Russian Church Abroad already gracing in the hall.
New York City: Metropolitan Hilarion celebrates Liturgy in Synodal Cathedral, presents New Portrait of Bishop Gregory (Grabbe) - 12/02/18