Today, His Eminence Metropolitan Pavel of Manila and Hanoi met with deacons Nicholas Salgado and Ambrose Sumagaysay, who arrived from the Philippines, at the Trinity-Sergius Lavra. After prayers at the relics of St. Sergius of Radonezh, the Bishop said a parting word to the guests of Russia. After the meeting, the deacons headed to the airport for departure to Khanty-Mansiysk.
December 25 – Christmas in the new calendar is the official and main holiday in the Philippines. In a country where 80% of the population are Roman Catholics, this day is preceded by long holidays so that believers have the opportunity to visit churches where special fore-festal services are held for 9 days. In our old calendar, on this day, we celebrate the memory of the great wonderworker St. Spiridon of Trimifunt.
On this day, the diocesan Department for Charity and Social Ministry held an action “Christmas Café” in Tagaytay: everyone who came to the parish of Christ the Savior on this holiday received a festive gift. Dozens of children and poor Tagaytay residents received a piece of festive mood and love from the volunteers of the FMI foundation.
Filipino deacons Nicolas Salgado and Ambrose Sumagaysay arrived in Moscow. After the cultural program, the fathers will go to Khanty-Mansiysk to see His Eminence Pavel, the ruling bishop of the Philippine-Vietnamese diocese, for ordination to the priesthood. We thank the Orthodox Missionary School at the Synodal Missionary Department for a warm meeting in the literal sense of the word. Since it is not possible to survive in winter in Russia without the winter clothes they brought.
On the feast of St Joasaph of Belgorod, the Divine Liturgy was celebrated for the first time after a long break caused by the pandemic in the village of Kapehan (Santa Maria). St. Joasaph is the patron saint of missionaries whose completely incorruptible relics rest in Belgorod, where the Missionary Seminary of the Russian Orthodox Church is located
At the training center of St Matrona of Moscow in Davao, the translation and editing of the service book in the Cebuano language is fulfilled with the help of Filipino seminarians from SPBDA. Now local clerics can use their native language more fully at services. Cebuano is the second most widely used language in the Philippines, spoken by almost 30 million people or 30% of the population living on the southern islands of the archipelago, including Mindanao, Bohol and Cebu. In total, there are about a hundred languages in the Philippines (respectively, the same number of tribes-peoples – as in Russia), mainly of the Austronesian group. The official language – Tagalog – is native to more than 40 million people, it is widespread in the northern part of the country, on the island of Luzon, where the capital of the republic is located.
Today, the Divine Liturgy was held at the Russian Center for Science and Culture in Hanoi – the first one after six months of restrictions related to coronavirus infection.
The day before, Priest Yevgeny Tsukalo met with the new Ambassador of the Russian Federation in Vietnam Gennady Stepanovich Bezdetko, who arrived in Hanoi in the spring. Father Yevgeny told about the parishes of the Russian Orthodox Church in Vietnam, which he has been tending for 3 years.
In Kiamba (Kayupo, Sarangani) in the parish of St. Nicholas, the patronal feast was celebrated today. The Divine Liturgy was served by Priest Roman Buniel and Deacon Matthew Sale.
Many years to Deacon Nikolas Salgado, Nikolas Canopen and Nikolas Balingit!
These days we are praying for victims of super typhoon Odette. The wind with gusts up to 315 km/h devastated the island of Siargao – the second most popular among tourists; destroyed most of the islands of Bohol, Cebu, Palawan, etc. Thousands of missing, at least a hundred dead. A mini-hotel on Cebu Island, where we recently celebrated the Divine Liturgy, and some houses of our parishioners on Mindanao Island were also destroyed.
An iconostasis has been installed in the Church of the Dormition of the Most Holy Theotokos in the village of Banate. With the help of our Orthodox brothers from Kinabalan, under the guidance of Fr. Joachim Gonzalez, we completed two days of work on the constructions. In preparation for the upcoming holidays, parishioners have renovated their modest church, put the adjacent territory in order. We thank everyone for help.
The Department of Charity and Social Ministry of the Philippine-Vietnamese Diocese and the FMI Foundation organized a Christmas outreach in Tagaytay. Employees of 14 municipal institutions were given gifts, those who care about us and protect us: firefighters, rescuers, police officers, employees of local authorities, the Volcano Service, the National Bureau of Investigation and others. To show the love of Christ and our appreciation! Thank you to our wonderful team, who always consider it a “labor of love” for the Lord…