On December 24th- 25th Holy Virgin Mary Russian Orthodox Cathedral celebrated Nativity according to the Gregorian calendar, the Eve of which this year fell on Sunday. Several days before, our flower ladies started spending countless hours in preparation for festivities. After Divine Liturgy on Sunday December 24th the Temple was decorated with flowers and Christmas trees. The Sisterhood prepared kutiya and kompot, baked goods and sweets for after the Divine services celebration. At the end of the Nativity Vigil service the cathedral choir under the direction of Reader Serge Liberovsky glorified the newly born Christ with traditional Nativity Carols which continued to be sung in the Parish Hall, both after Vigil and Divine Liturgy the next morning.  During Divine Liturgy cathedral Rector Archpriest Nazari Polataiko read the English version of the Nativity message of His Beatitude the Most Blessed Tikhon, Archbishop of Washington, Metropolitan of All America and Canada.

https://oca.org/holy-synod/statements/his-beatitude-metropolitan-tikhon/nativity-of-our-lord-2017

We would like to take this opportunity to greet all who celebrate Nativity by the Gregorian calendar.

Christ is Born!  Glorify Him!

On Sunday December 31st at 7pm, a New Year moleben was celebrated at Holy Virgin Mary Russian Orthodox Cathedral. Many people came to offer their thanks for all God’s generous gifts in the past year. Archpriest Nazari Polataiko offered a small reflection on how we Orthodox Christians should be celebrating the beginning of a new year, that we should be thankful to God for everything that He offers us and be always ready to accept His Divine will in our hearts and lives. As Father Nazari said: “Where God is, there is no evil; everything that is given to us from God brings us peace and eternal happiness”.

On January 5th and 6th we celebrated the Baptism of our Lord Jesus Christ according to the Gregorian calendar. According to the Scripture, when Christ was baptized: “He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and alighting on Him; and lo, a voice from heaven saying This is my beloved Son...m” (Matthew 3,17). ​
Parishioners and visitors to Holy Virgin Mary Russian Orthodox Cathedral gathered at their parish temple to celebrate the feast day of the Theophany of our Lord on Gregorian calendar. Archpriest Nazari Polataiko, rector of the parish, led the services of the feast day.

In his short sermon at the end of the liturgy, Father Nazari reflected on the feast of Theophany, explaining to the faithful that Christ’s baptism in the Jordan is the Manifestation of God to the world. ​The world was granted a revelation of the Holy Trinity. All three Hypostasis were made manifest together: the Father testified from on high to the divine Sonship of Jesus; the Son received His Father’s testimony; and the Holy Spirit was seen in the form of a dove, descending from the Father. Following the Divine Liturgy all the faithful were invited to the parish hall for cup of tea and sweets. 

Following the cup of tea, the parish flower team of Marina Smetanina, Marie McEntire and Margaret Dascalu with the help of others rushed to refresh flower decorations of our lovely Temple in time for Vigil that we celebrated for Nativity on Julian calendar, followed by divine liturgy next morning on Sunday January 7th. After Vigil everybody was invited to the parish hall for kutiya and traditional kompot with sweets. The church choir offered an even larger selection of carols. The parish hall was transformed into the theatrical stage in preparation for the Yolka celebration prepared by the teachers and children of the Parish Saturday School. Sunday morning the cathedral was flooded by joyous crowd who came to celebrate Nativity of Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Happy children’s voices and laughter were heard all over the parish premises. Archpriest Nazari Polataiko read the Nativity greeting of His Beatitude Metropolitan Tikhon, this time in Russian, a translation of which was provided by our church’s headquarters in New York. A holiday show “Twelve Months” became the center of this year’s Yolka celebration. Pupils of our Saturday School were dressed in beautiful costumes with professional makeup and absolutely brilliant theatrical direction!

At the end of the celebration, Ded Moroz and Snegurochka greeted all participants of festivities with the Nativity of Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ and New Year. Everybody left with gifts, but most importantly, with their hearts filled with joy and happiness.

The next day, January 8th, after Divine Liturgy, Father Nazari blessed a new Altar covering which was ordered a year ago and hand-carved in a style matching the existing Parish Iconostas, and which will be installed in our parish shortly.

Christ is born!  Glorify Him!