NEWS AND EVENTS - Thursday, November 9, 2017
CHURCH SLAVA CELEBRATION IN NASHVILLE
The celebration of the church feast of the Venerable Mother Paraskeva in Nashville began solemnly on the eve of the feast with the Vigil, followed the next day with the Divine Liturgy, served by Fr. Aleksandar Vujkovic, the parish priest, Fr. Gregory Hohnholt from the local Greek Church and Fr. Christopher Stanton from the local OCA parish, and long time priest at St. Innocent's Church in Alaska. An agape meal was served in the church hall for clergy and the faithful following liturgy. Parishioners awaited the arrival of His Grace Bishop Longin of New Gracanica and Midwestern America that evening.
The parish priest welcomed His Grace Bishop Longin and Protodeacon Milovan Gogic, who accompanied the bishop, at the airport after which they went to the newly renovated St. Petka Church. This was the bishop's first time seeing the church since the completion of the first phase of renovations and he expressed his excitement. After viewing the church the church board vice president Mihailo Martinovic hosted the bishop and guests for dinner.
The next morning the faithful anxiously awaited the arrival of the bishop. His Grace was welcomed by the children, clergy and faithful in front of the church. Before the begining of the liturgy the bishop ordained Miroljub Alimpic a Reader. Concelebrating with the bishop at the Holy Hierarchical Divine Liturgy were Fr. Aleksandar Vujkovic, Fr. Christopher Stanton and Protodeacon Milovan Gogic. Many of the faithful partook of Holy Communion, having prepared themselves through fasting and confession. The cutting of the Slava Kolach follwed the prayer before the Ambon , after which His Grace spoke of the importance of the Divine Liturgy in our lives. He congratulated all the faithful on the occasion of their Church Slava but also on the beauty of the newly renovated church and thanked them for the love and sacrifice they have offered to their Church. He praised the church choir that sang the responses at the liturgy. The Slava luncheon was served in the hall.
During the lunch Fr. Aleksandar Vujkovic addressed the Bishop and faithful wishing everyone a blessed Slava and giving thanks to God for all things. Fr. Aleksandar also congratulated His Grace on his name's day since that Sunday was the feast day of Martyr Longin, the centurion who stood at the Cross of the Lord, and presented him with an icon, a copy of the Kazan Mother of God. The bishop also the faithful during lunch speaking of the beauty of our Orthodox faith and the importance of love for one another and unity.
After the Slava luncheon visited the parish house which was purchased for the parish priest and his family. The church Slava, the protectress of the parish the Venerable Mother Paraskeva, St. Peka, was celebrated with much spiritual joy. With prayers to God we will continue with the work on the renovations of the church in anticipation of the consecration.