On the 19th and 21st of December our St. Nicholas parish celebrated its Feast Day.
The Divine Liturgy was presided over by the parish rector, Archbishop Gabriel of Montreal and Canada, who was joined by the clergy of the cathedral and visiting Archdeacon Vasiliy Milonow from Ottawa.
During the reading of the Hours, His Grace elevated Anatoly Crepostnoi to the rank of sub-deacon.
Archbishop Gabriel in his sermon spoke of the life and deeds of St. Nicholas, noting how the veneration of the Saint of Myra is widespread throughout the Christian world. "So why this attachment of Christians to St. Nicholas? It stems from the fact that he is always close to us and that he hears our prayers. Today he shares in our celebration and having been blessed in God’s heavenly abode, he calls upon us to imitate him just as he himself imitated Christ.” At the end of his sermon, Archbishop Gabriel called all to pray to St. Nicholas for all of life’s necessities: “Since St. Nicholas is the patron saint of all travelers, it would be good to memorize the troparion to the saint and to recite it every time we travel, be it by plane, by automobile, or by subway.”
At the end of the Liturgy, Many Years were proclaimed to His Holiness Kyrill, Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia, to the First Hierarch of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia, Metropolitan Hilarion, to His Eminence Archbishop Gabriel of Montreal and Canada, to the cathedral clergy, to the parishioners, and to all those who were celebrating their Name Day.
Completing the celebration of the patronal feast was a festive meal in the parish hall. During the meal Mr. Peter Paganuzzi, a long standing and active parishioner, gave a presentation marking the fifty years since the purchase of the present building. He recounted some happy as well as tragic events from the history of the parish (including the devastating fire), and gave an account of the restoration of the building.
The guests were treated to musical performances by the children of parishioners and students of our parish school, congratulating everyone on this festive day.