St. Nicholas of Myra is perhaps, after the Mother of God, the most beloved by Russians of all the saints. Every home traditionally has at least an icon of St. Nicholas besides of the Saviour and the Virgin Mary.
His Grace, Bishop Luke of Syracuse, abbot of the monastery, presided at the services, coming out for the Polyleos during the Vigil and also presiding at the Divine Liturgy on the feast itself. It being a Sunday, the church was filled to overflowing with the faithful.
During the Small Entrance, Vladyka raised Fr. Deacon Andrei Psarev to the rank of Protodeacon, for his long and zealous service to the Church and especially the Holy Trinity Orthodox Seminary, in which he is a professor.
After the Great Entrance, Vladyka ordained Fr. Hierodeacon Theodore to be a hieromonk. Fr. Theodore is acting Dean of Students and is one of the first graduates of the Graduate Program at the seminary. Vladyka pointed out in his congratulatory word that monks are not ordained as an award, but to serve the Church and the faithful.
After the end of the service, all the brotherhood, clergy and faithful were treated to a delicious salmon dinner, with fresh salmon from Alaska, donated by Alexander von Tsurikov, for which we thank him very much, for his kindness towards us. God grant him good health and salvation!