JERUSALEM: October 17, 2019
The Russian Ecclesiastical Mission in Jerusalem marks the namesday of its chief
The feast day of the Intercession of the Most-Holy Theotokos is always a special celebration in the monasteries of the Russian Ecclesiastical Mission in Jerusalem. It is especially so at Gethsemane Convent, where 131 years ago, the Church of St Mary Magdalene, Equal-to-the-Apostles, was consecrated.
The festive celebrations draw large gatherings of worshipers, including pilgrims from Russia, Ukraine, Europe and America, and Orthodox Christians living in Israel.
Archimandrite Roman (Krassovsky), Chief of the REM, officiated at all-night vigil at the Church of St Mary Magdalene, joined by Hieromonk Misail (Minin), Hieromonk Feodor (Kirike), Priest Roman Gultyaev and Hierodeacon Gerasim (Kotovsky), as well as visiting clergymen from Russia and Ukraine.
Divine services began with the ceremonious greeting of Fr Roman. The church was filled with worshipers at the beginning of Divine Liturgy, and the Holy Gifts were offered from three chalices. Archimandrite Roman noted the special significance of this holiday to the Russian soul, as an expression of special love for the Mother of God, indelibly marked in the Russian people. A moleben was then performed before an icon of St Roman the Melodist (“sweet-singer”), whose memory is marked on this day as well.
Abbess Elizabeth (Smelic) of Gethsemane Convent then congratulated both the Chief of the Mission and Fr Roman Gultyaev on their namesday. Archimandrite Roman, thanking Mother Elizabeth and all those in attendance for their warm greetings, also congratulated the sisters, who see in St Roman their own intercessor.