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North Port, FL: Pentecost in Our Lady of Pochaev Church

On Sunday, June 23, the great feast of Holy Pentecost took place. This feast is the birthday of the Church, because the Holy Spirit descended upon the apostles, and thus they were vested with "power from on high," the grace of the Holy Spirit for the creation of Christ’s Church throughout the world.

In the temporary Church of Our Lady of Pochaev in North Port, FL, on the eve of the feast, Pentecost Soul Saturday, June 22, Divine Liturgy was celebrated and a panihida served, followed by All-Night Vigil that evening. Serving Liturgy and Vigil were parish clerics Hieromonk Arkadii (Polishchuk) and Deacon Alexander Kharitoniuk. Singing in the choir were rector Archimandrite Stefan (Khilchuk) and Hierodeacon Paisius (Alexeevets). Fr. Stefan led the Litia. The day prior, the church was bountifully and beautifully adorned with flowers, as symbol of the vivifying and creative power of the Holy Spirit.

On the feast of Pentecost itself, a large number of parishioners and guests of the community gathered together. Starting before Liturgy, Fr. Arkadii confessed the faithful, while Fr. Stefan officiated the services, co-served by Frs. Arkadii and Alexander. Immediately after Liturgy, Great Vespers was served with the reading of the three ancient Kneeling Prayers.

After the service, Fr. Stefan addressed the faithful with a didactic sermon and expounded the meaning, significance, and role of the Holy Spirit in the life of the Church and in the life of every Christian.

The feast day concluded with a luncheon and fellowship. At 5:00 PM, Matins was served.

The following day, Liturgy was celebrated once more. The second day of Pentecost is traditionally dedicated to the Third Hypostasis of the Holy Trinity – the Holy Spirit. The brethren of the community greeted parishioners with the feast and wished that all might "acquire the Holy Spirit," as taught by Venerable Seraphim of Sarov.


North Port, FL: Pentecost in Our Lady of Pochaev Church - 06/23/24

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Eastern American Diocese | Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia