On Monday, September 27 the brotherhood of Holy Cross Monastery celebrated their patronal feast day, the Exaltation of the Precious Cross. Celebrations were led by Bishop Nicholas of Manhattan, beginning the evening before with the festive Vigil, Litia and the special Rite of the Exaltation of the Cross.
The next morning monastic clergy served a Lesser Blessing of Water. The greeting of the bishop followed, and Vladyka Nicholas, surrounded by monastery and local clergy, served as chief celebrant for the Hours and Hierarchal Divine Liturgy.
At the Little Entrance, Hieromonk Macarius was awarded the right to wear the nabedrennik for his service to the monastery. Later in the Liturgy, following the Consecration, Vladyka ordained Monk Isaac to the holy diaconate.
A multitude of clergy and parishioners from both nearby and distant parishes were present at the divine services. This was a source of great joy and consolation for the monastic brotherhood, the more so as it was the first time since the beginning of COVID in the spring of 2020 that it was possible for so many dearly-beloved clergy and pilgrims to pray together with the brotherhood in the monastery chapel.
After the Thanksgiving Prayers, everyone processed from the monastery church to the trapeza where a festive meal was held for all, concluding with the Rite of the Elevation of the Panagia Bread.
On the evening of the feast the monastic brotherhood came together for a Synaxis with Bishop Nicholas. After bringing them up to date concerning various happenings in the life of the Russian Church, he answered spiritual questions and shared stories from his own life experience.
With mixed feelings of gratitude for his visit and sorrow at his departure, the brotherhood bade farewell to Vladyka amidst the festive pealing of bells on Tuesday morning.