On Great & Holy Friday, April 22, when the Holy Church commemorates the holy, salvific, terrible suffering and death of our Lord Jesus Christ, divine services in the Synodal Cathedral of the Sign in New York City were officiated by Archbishop Gabriel of Montreal & Canada and Eastern American Diocesan vicar Bishop Nicholas of Manhattan, as well as clergy: cathedral dean Archpriest Andrei Sommer, Priest Živojin Jakovljević (cleric of the Serbian Church in the USA), Protodeacon Nicolas Mokhoff (cathedral cleric), and Hierodeacon Panteleimon (Jigalin; diocesan cleric).
Vespers of Great Saturday was officiated by Bishop Nicholas. During the service, the Shroud was taken out of the altar. The believers then venerated the Holy Shroud, after which the Canon of the Lamentation of the Most Holy Theotokos was read. At the conclusion of the service, Bishop Nicholas addressed the faithful with a short sermon and urged them to imitate the Savior and have love for one another.
Great Saturday Vespers are the precursor of the Matins of Great & Holy Saturday, during which the Church serves the Burial of our Lord Jesus Christ. On Friday evening, Archbishop Gabriel officiated, co-served by Bishop Nicholas and Frs. Andrei Panteleimon. The hierarchs, clergy, and faithful went in procession with the Shroud, symbolizing the Burial of the Savior, passing through the courtyard of the cathedral.
After the procession, the Prophecy of Ezekiel about the general resurrection was read. At both services, the Synodal Choir sang wonderfully under the direction of conductor Vadim S. Gan.