The Entry of the Lord into Jerusalem at Exaltation of the Cross Cathedral

On the Sunday of the Entry of the Lord into Jerusalem, His Grace Bishop Irenei of London and Western Europe headed the festal Divine Services at the Cathedral of the Exaltation of the Cross in Geneva, Switzerland, co-served by the local clergy amongst an enormous crowd of faithful who had assembled for the Feast that marks the transition from Great Lent into the week of the Passion of our Savior Jesus Christ. The day before, His Grace had led the rite of General Unction, which was attended by the largest number of faithful in the history of the cathedral.

All the Divine Services of the weekend were adorned by the beautiful singing of the Cathedral choir, which has greatly expanded both its number of singers and its repertoire over the past year, and sang with piety and festal beauty.

Of special joy to the Ruling Bishop was the presence in the Holy Altar of His Eminence Archbishop Michael, the retired former Ruling Bishop of the Diocese of Western Europe, who in the preceding days had celebrated his 80th birthday. Having accepted Bishop Irenei’s invitation to join him in the Cathedral on the Sunday of Palms to mark this significant jubilee, Archbishop Michael prayed in the Holy Altar during the Divine Liturgy and received Holy Communion together with Bishop Irenei and the clergy.

At the conclusion of the Festal Liturgy, following a homily on the spiritual significance of the Sunday of Palms and the entry into the spirit of Passion Week, Bishop Irenei offered words of congratulation to His Eminence, specially noting his happiness at their common prayers before the Altar of Almighty God, and wishing every grace and strength from God for his predecessor. The Archdeacon then intoned ‘Many years!’ and the choir joyfully responded in kind, whereupon a festal trapeza was held for all the assembled clergy and faithful, at which the springtime sunshine provided the ideal atmosphere for a joyful outdoor gathering.




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