On Thursday the 27th and Friday the 28th of August, the brethren of Holy Cross Monastery in Wayne, WV celebrated the great feast of the Dormition of the Most Holy Theotokos. Divine services were officiated in the monastery’s main church by its abbot, Archimandrite Seraphim (Voepel), co-served by monastery clergy. Praying in church were the brethren and local faithful.
Toward the end of the All-Night Vigil, the Jerusalem Burial Rite was served, and the clergy and faithful processed across the monastery grounds with the holy shroud. After the service, Fr. Seraphim tonsured novice Gregory (Buzi) to the rassophore.
Divine Liturgy was celebrated the following morning. Upon its conclusion, the Rite of the Panagia was performed, during which the brethren, singing sacred hymns, transferred the Theotokion prosphora (from which a piece was removed in honor of the Mother of God during Proskomedia) from the church to the monastery refectory. Kept there in a special vessel, upon completion of the communal meal, the brethren and faithful all partook of it. The purpose of the rite is to represent the true presence of the Mother of God at the fellowship, in honor of her feast.