The Feast of Three Hierarchs
On February 11-12, 2008, the seminarians and faculty of Holy Trinity Seminary together with the brotherhood of Holy Trinity Monastery celebrated the feast of the Three Hierarchs, Sts. Basil the Great, Gregory the Theologian, and John Chrysostom, the heavenly protectors of the Seminary. The festive services were presided over by His Eminence, Metropolitan Laurus, First Hierarch of the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad and Rector of Holy Trinity Seminary. His Grace, Bishop Gabriel of Manhattan, alumnus of the Holy Trinity Seminary, was present to join the celebrations. During the Vigil, as well as during Divine Liturgy, large parts of the services were read and chanted in Greek, including the reading of the festive canon, the Epistle and Gospel. Following the Divine Liturgy a moleben was served to the Three Hierarchs.
At two o’clock in the afternoon, Metropolitan Laurus, faculty, students and guests gathered for the traditional reception in the Seminary graduation hall. Metropolitan Laurus, Rector of Holy Trinity Seminary, opened the reception by reflecting upon the responsibilities and challenges of seminarians’ lives, and calling upon the students to devote themselves to the study of the holy fathers. Archimandrite Luke, Dean of HTS, introduced His Grace Bishop Gabriel, who used to be a member of the Seminary’s faculty, teaching Russian History as well as Readings in Russian Culture. Bishop Gabriel congratulated all present with the Seminary’s feast and reminded the students of the rich historical and spiritual legacy of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia, and its sole institution of higher education. Official greetings had been received from several archpastors, including Archbishop Evgeny of Vereia, rector of the Moscow Theological Academy and Seminary.
Andrei A. Kostriukov, a graduate of the Moscow Theological Acadmey and currently instructor of Russian Church History at St. Tikhon’s Orthodox University of the Humanities in Moscow, addressed the audience, focusing on the issue of canonicity of the Russian Orthodox ChurchOutside Russia in the 1940s. Following Andrei A. Kostriukov’s talk, Protodeacon Vladimir Tsurikov, Assistant Dean of the Seminary, presented an account of the Seminary's events over the past year. Fr. Vladimir concluded with announcing this year's recipients of different scholarships.
Scholarships from the Koulaev Foundation were granted to Vitaly Fedchenko,
Niolai Fedkiv and Sergii Tcac. The Metropolitan Philaret Fund scholarship
was awarded to Ephraim Willmarth. The sisterhood of Sts. Elizabeth
and Barbara of the Holy New Martyrs and Confessors parish in Norwich,
CT, awarded a scholarship to Sergio Silva, Alexander Sandoval received
a scholarship designated for students from the US, a scholarship
from Tatiana Eaglesham was presented to Ephraim Willmarth. The Smerznak,
Medak and Kidwell Scholarship was awarded to Alexander Sandoval
and Miodrag Radovanovich, the Bishop Alexander scholarship was awarded
to Sergio Silva and Eduardo Volkov. The Holy Trinity Seminary Scholarship
was granted to fourth year seminarians Arsenii Mikhalev, Vladimir
Davydov, Vladimir Nedelkin, Dmitri Kiselev, Georgii Kaplanov and
Sergei Jakubov, and to fifth year seminarian Alexei Lemmer in recognition
of their diligence in all aspects of Seminary life.
Special thanks are due above all to Metropolitan Laurus and Bishop Gabriel for taking time out of their busy schedules to come and pray with the seminarians on their feast day, to Andrei A. Kostriukov for his inspiring and instructive talk, to Hieromonk Cyprian Alexandrou), who led the choir during parts of the service chanting in Greek, and to the students who prepared the reception. The Seminary wishes to express its gratitude and appreciation to all foundations and donors, who provide the necessary and much needed funds for the students to conduct their studies at Holy Trinity Seminary, in particular we wish to thank the Metropolitan Philaret Fund and Matushka Nadia Mokhova, the Ivan Koulaeff Fund, the Sisterhood of Sts. Elizabeth and Barbara, Tatiana Eaglesham, and Helen Smerznak for their generous support.