The divine services in the Synodal Cathedral of the Sig in New York City for the forefeast, eve, and great feast of the Lord’s Baptism (Theophany) were officiated by the hierarchs. To the joy of the clergy and faithful, all of the services were held under the aegis of the wonderworking Kursk Root Icon of the Mther of God. The Synoal choir sang beautifully under the direction of conductor Vadim S. Gan.
On Sunday, January 17, the forefeast of Theophany, Archbishop Gabriel of Montreal & Canada celebrated Divine Liturgy. Metropolitan Hilarion of Eastern America & New York prayed at the service.
On Monday, January 18, Theophany Eve, diocesan vicar Bishop Nicholas of Manhattan celebrated Divine Liturgy, afterward performing the Great Blessing of the Water. That evening, Metropolitan Hilarion officiated the All-Night Vigil for the Lord’s Theophany, co-served by Bishop Nicholas and cathedral clergy.
On Tuesday, January 19, the very feast fo the Lord’s Baptism, Metropolitan Hilarion celebrated Divine Liturgy in the cathedral. Concelebrating with the First Hierarch of the Russian Church Abroad were Bishop Nicholas and cathedral clergy: dean Archpriest Andrei Sommer, Archpriest Edward Chervinsky, Protodeacon Nicolas Mokhoff, and Deacon Nicholas Ilyin (cleric of Holy Dormition Convent "Novo-Diveevo" in Nanuet, NY).
Despite its being a weekday, a large number of cathedral parishioners came to pray at the festal divine services (observing social distance and all sanitary norms). Most of the faithful present confessed their sins and communed of Christ’s Holy Mysteries.
Upon completion of Liturgy, His Eminence performed the Great Blessing of the Water.
Metropolitan Hilarion greeted everyone with the radiant feast of the Lord’s Baptism, recounting in short the history of the feast, and reminding them of the need to remember our own baptism, when "we died to our old, sinful life, and were risen for a radiant life in the Holy Spirit." His Eminence called on the faithful to live a life in Chrsit, and to observe all of the commandments of our Savior.
After the service, Bishop Nicholas blessed all of the rooms of the Synodal Headquarters with the festal holy water.