On Sunday, July 31, and Monday, August 1, the feast of the Finding of the Relics of Venerable Seraphim, Wonderworker of Sarov, Archbishop Gabriel of Montreal & Canada visited Holy Dormition Convent "Novo-Diveevo" in Nanuet, NY, in connection with the patronal feast of the convent’s main church.
His Eminence officiated All-Night Vigil and the reading of the Akathist to the venerable saint, co-served by: Archpriest Alexander Fedorowski (cathedral dean), Archpriest Elias Gorsky (rector of Holy Virgin Protection Church in Nyack, NY), Priests Artem Siss & Alexei Klar, Protodeacon Serge Arlievsky, and Deacon Nicholas Ilyin (convent clerics).
On Monday morning, a second akathist and Lesser Blessing of Water was served. The aforementioned clerics were joined at Divine Liturgy by Archpriest George Zelenin (rector of St. Michael the Archangel Church in Wayne, NJ) and Archpriest Seraphim Chemodakov (cleric of Our Lady of Kazan Church in Newark, NJ).
The choir sang the divine services under the direction of Matushka Maria Fedorowski. Praying at Liturgy were the sisters of the convent led by Abbess Makaria, as well as a multitude of pilgrims. That day, many communed of Christ’s Holy Mysteries.
In his sermon, Archbishop Gabriel spoke about the importance of St. Seraphim and, more importantly, how as the young Prochor, after falling from the belfry of the St. Sergius-Kazan Icon Cathedral in Kursk, he prayed to the Mother of God and was healed during a procession with the Kursk Root Icon. The importance of prayer to the Most Holy Theotokos was emphasized.
A moleben was served, followed by a procession around the cathedral dedicated to the venerable saint.
The Protodeacon intoned the polychronion to the Abbess and sisters – specifically to Fr. Seraphim Chemodakov and Nun Seraphima, who were celebrating their namesday. Archbishop Gabriel thanked Fr. Alexander for his continued years of service, the rest of the clergy that served, and the choir and altar servers.
A festal meal was served to all in the main convent dining hall, and pilgrims and visitors had the chance to socialize with the clergy and visit the cemetery throughout the afternoon.