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On Sunday, December 19, 2021, with the blessing of His Holiness Patriarch Kirill, and at the invitation of His Grace Matthew Bishop of Sourozh and Administrator of the Patriarchal Parishes in the USA & Canada, His Beatitude Metropolitan Tikhon presided at the Divine Liturgy at New York City’s Saint Nicholas Patriarchal Cathedral on the day of the Cathedral’s patronal feast.
Concelebrating with His Beatitude were Archpriest George Konyev, Chancellor of the Patriarchal Parishes in the USA, Archpriest Alexander Golubov, Igumen Nikodim, Dean of the Cathedral and Secretary of the Administrator of the Patriarchal Parishes of the USA, and Priest Alessandro Margheritino, Secretary of the Orthodox Church in America. Metropolitan Tikhon’s delegation included Deacon Peter Ilchuk, Executive Secretary to the Metropolitan.
After the Divine Liturgy, Igumen Nikodim shared the greetings of Bishop Matthew who welcomed His Beatitude, and noted his regrets for not being able to participate in the celebration.
Metropolitan Tikhon offered his greetings to both His Holiness Patriarch Kirill and Bishop Matthew, thanking them for the opportunity to celebrate the Divine Liturgy on such beautiful and joyous day in which we honor the beloved Saint Nicholas the Wonderworker, Archbishop of Myra in Lycia. His Beatitude also thanked Father George and the Cathedral’s clergy for their hospitality and love.
In his homily at the end of the Divine Liturgy, His Beatitude pointed out that, “In today’s Gospel, we read that the crowds gathered around the Lord Jesus Christ and ‘sought to touch him, for power went out from him and healed them all.’ Perhaps, hearing this, we wish that we, too, could have seen Jesus with our eyes, touched him with our hands, and have received healing for the wounds of our bodies, our souls, our hearts. But of course, the Lord is always present to us, not just spiritually, in our inner being, but physically, through the saints.” Metropolitan Tikhon then remarked that, “Wherever there is sanctity, there is Jesus Christ. And in some cases, in accordance with God’s providence, the holiness of a person is so great that, even after his death, his body remains with us, visibly full of God’s healing grace, always making Christ’s power present in our lives. This is the case with Saint Nicholas.”
At the conclusion of the liturgical celebration, His Beatitude and his delegation were welcomed to the parish hall to share a festal meal with the Cathedral’s community in honor of their patron saint. During the meal, Metropolitan Tikhon and Bishop Matthew were able to speak on the phone and exchange greetings of the feast.
A photo gallery can be viewed on the OCA website and Facebook page.