On June 30, the Feast of the Holy Apostles, we were blessed with a visit from our beloved Archbishop Michael. He was at Holy Apostles for Vespers on June 29, and served the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy on June 30. Also serving, along with Fr Joel and Deacon Ivan, were Frs Alexey Karlgut and Timothy Holowatch of Endicott, NY, and Deacon Stephan Karlgut. Seminarian and blessed Subdeacon Robert West, originally from Lansing, accompanied the Archbishop as his driver and served in the altar.
The choir sang beautifully under the direction of Matushka Anastasia Karlgut from Endicott, and with the help of visiting singers from Endicott.
Archbishop Michael was enroute to a celebration of the 100th anniversary of the repose of the Holy New Martyr Grand Duchess Elizabeth, and traveling with a portion of her relics. We were blessed by the presence of this great Saint's relic, an inspiration to Christians throughout the world.
After the Liturgy, all shared in a festive meal prepared by the parish.
Having beheld the Resurrection of Christ,
Let us worship the Holy Lord Jesus,
The Only Sinless One.
We venerate Thy Cross, O Christ,
and we praise and glorify Thy Resurrection,
For behold, through the Cross, joy has come into all the world.
Let us always bless the Lord,
Praising His Resurrection,
for by enduring the Cross for us,
He has destroyed death by death!
On Sunday, November 19, Holy Apostles celebrated the baptism of Fr Joel and Matushka Meg Brady's son Herman. In the baptismall service, people being baptized – inlcluding infants – are referred to as "newly-enlisted warriors of Christ," and through Baptism, Chrismation (annointing), and Communion, they become full sacramental members of the Church.
May God preserve His newly-illumined servant Herman in peace, health, and salvation for many blessed years!
On Sunday, August 20, Archbishop MICHAEL of the Diocese of New York and New Jersey celebrated the Hierarchical Liturgy at Holy Apostles Church. Reader Robert West, a parishioner of Holy Apostles who is now studying at St. Tikhon's Seminary and has spent the summer assisting Archbishop Michael in his travels, was blessed to serve with the orarion (subdiaconal stole). Reader Ivan Bazarov, having completed the St. Tikhon's Diaconal Formation program this past Spring, was ordained to the Holy Diaconate during the Liturgy.
We were joined by many local clergy and singers for this festive occasion. In the afternoon, Holy Apostles parish also hosted the New York State Deanery's annual clergy picnic at nearby Myers Park. Local clergy and their families, along with parishioners, were able to enjoy food, fellowship, and swimming in Cayuga Lake.
We give thanks for this joyous day, and pray that God will preserve our beloved Archbishop, Deacon Ivan, Reader Robert, and all our clergy and the people of this parish for many blessed years.
August 6th commemorates the Transfiguration of Christ, when Jesus revealed His glory to His disciples on Mount Tabor (see Mt. 17:1-8; Mk. 9:2-8; Lk. 9:28-36). This is a great feast not only because of its revelation of Christ's divinity, but because it reveals human nature as it was meant to be transformed by sharing in God's glory. On this day we bless fruit, the "first fruits" of the earth serving as a sign of all creation being renewed and tranfigured by God's grace.
Several parishioners brought fruit, which was blessed at the end of the Divine Liturgy on Sunday and shared as part of the meal following.
On Saturday, July 15, the church received a new icon panel for our iconostasis. The icon was blessed on Sunday, July 16, and installed during the following week.
The icon depicts twelve Apostles, gathered around Christ, with the Holy Spirit descending in the form of a dove from heaven. It reminds us of the apostles as our patrons and intercessors, and of our own "apostolic" calling as a Church community.
This icon joins three other beautifully hand-painted icons on our iconostasis: of Christ, His Mother, and the saints of North America. The next project is a pair of panels for the Holy Doors, depicting the four Evangelists (who are currently shown in small icon reproductions on the doors).
"No less than the written word, an icon is an instrument for the transmission of Christian tradition and faith. Through sacred imagery, the Holy Spirit speaks to us, revealing truths that may not be evident to those using only the tools of reason...
"The icon has a hieratic character; it is concerned solely with the sacred. Through line and color, the iconographer seeks to convey the awesomeness of the invisible and divine reality and to lead the viewer to a consciousness of the divine presence. The icon is theology written in images and color."
—Jim Forest, Praying with Icons