JERUSALEM: June 25, 2021
Holy Pentecost celebrations at Ascension of the Lord Convent on the Mt of Olives
Near the place of the Ascension of our Lord Jesus Christ on the holy Mount of Olives is a Russian Convent dedicated to that event. On the day of the Ascension the patronal feast of the temple is celebrated with special solemnity.
In advance, the sisters of the monastery cleaned the temple and decorated it with flowers.
All-night vigil was led by the head of the Russian Ecclesiastical Mission, Archimandrite Roman (Krassovsky). The clergy of the monastery – Archimandrite Vasily (Druzhinets), Igumen Iona (Galishnikov) and Deacon Vyacheslav Batalsky co-served with the Head of the Mission. During the polyeleos before the icon of the holiday, they solemnly glorified the feast day with the singing of the Megylarion. The sisters and pilgrims venerated the holy image and were anointed with holy oil.
On the very day of the feast, after midnight office and the consecration of water (which is always served on patronal feast days), Fr Roman was greeted at the entrance to the church. The aforementioned priests served with the addition of Hieromonk Theodore (Kirike) from the Convent of St Mary Magdalene. Together with the abbess of the convent, Mother Varvara (Novikova), the Abbess of the Monastery of Gethsemane, Mother Elisabeth (Smelic), who came to the festivities with some sisters also prayed. Also, the elder sister of the Bethany Community of the Resurrection of Christ, Mother Maria (Wall) arrived with the sisters and children of the boarding school.
Towards the end of the service, the Primate of the Greek Patriarchate, His Beatitude Patriarch Theophilos III of Jerusalem, arrived. The hierarchs of the Patriarchate – Metropolitans Isychiy, Theophanes, Aristarchus, Joachim with clergy and the Consul General of Greece in Jerusalem – Evangelos Vlioros – accompanied the Patriarch.
The Patriarch greeted Fr Roman, Abbess Varvara with her sisters. Archimandrite Roman thanked His Beatitude for his love and asked him to continue praying for the monastics and for the Russian pilgrims in the Holy Land.