Great Thursday

On this day, the Church remembers how Christ washed the feet of the disciples during the Last Supper, when there was a dispute between them about which of them was older. And then the main thing happens, for which He gathered the apostles: while everyone was eating, Jesus took bread and, having blessed, broke it and, distributing it to the disciples, said: “Take, eat: this is My Body.” And taking the cup and giving thanks, He gave it to them and said, “Drink from it all, for this is My Blood of the New Testament, which is poured out for many for the remission of sins” (Mt 26:26-28). The Lord first gave to His disciples His Body and Blood, about which He had previously said: “Unless you eat the Flesh of the Son of Man and drink His Blood, you will not have life in you” (Jn 6:53). The Last Supper ended late in the evening. It was followed by a lonely night prayer of the Lord in the Garden of Gethsemane on the slope of the Mount of Olives, the arrival of guards, arrest, interrogations by the high priests, trial.

In the photos, a service at the parish in honor of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Cotabato province, Mindanao Island, Philippines.

Dome on the Church

On April 12, prior to the celebration of the Resurrection of Christ, Hieromonk Kornily (Molev) – Secretary of the Diocese, priest Moses Cahilig – dean of North Cotabato Deanery, and priest Nicholas Salgado – rector of the Parish of St. Seraphim of Sarov in Makalangot, Arakan, gathered for the blessing and installation of the dome for the church of St. Seraphim. The dome has long been prepared, however, due to the difficulties concerning its elevation and placement, its installation has been delayed. After a long time of careful preparation the dome was finally ready to be put in its designated place.

Baptism of a Vietnamese

Nguyen Khak is a graduate student at Ho Chi Minh University in the Department of Religious Studies. He was familiar with many religions firsthand. His father is a Catholic, mother is a Protestant, but his soul was looking for the Truth. He visited the parish in Ho Chi Minh City and Vung Tau several times, read the Orthodox Catechism, the Gospel and the desire to become Orthodox only increased. On April 9, on Lazarus Saturday, the baptism took place at the parish in Vung Tau. The newly enlightened one is now named Savva, in honor of Savva the Blessed. During the Baptism, Savva read the Creed in Vietnamese.

Palm Sunday in Davao

Parishioners of the church in honor of St.. Matrona of Moscow on the island of Mindanao on the feast of the Entry of the Lord into Jerusalem prayed at the Divine Liturgy. The parish has a Training and educational center for clergy of the Philippine-Vietnamese Diocese and laypeople. The center is headed by the secretary of the diocese and the rector of the parish, Hieromonk Korniliy (Molev). Newly ordained clergy undergo liturgical practice here, and translation activities are conducted. Father Korniliy, among other things, has his Telegram channel “Diary of a Filipino priest”, where he talks about the folk traditions and culture of local residents, and also keeps notes about the everyday life of an Orthodox priest in the distant Philippine archipelago –

More Orthodox in Manila

“Mary took about a pint of pure nard myrrh, and she poured it on Jesus’ feet and wiped His feet with her hair” (Gospel on Palm Sunday).
Today the parish of the Iveron icon of the Mother of God in Manila has significantly grown up as 17 new members were converted into Orthodoxy through Chrismation (anointing with the Holy Myrrh) from Roman Catholic faith.

Liturgy on Lazarus Saturday

Liturgy on Lazarus Saturday was celebrated at the parish of St. Isidore of Rostov in Alabel, Sarangani. The service was performed by priests Alexiy Bergado, Roman Buniel and Matthew Sale.

Memorial evening in Theological Academy

On April 2, the memorial evening was held in the assembly hall of the St. Petersburg Theological Academy. Its theme was spiritual missions in the countries of the Asia-Pacific region and African countries. After the opening remarks, the audience watched a video about the life of Orthodox communities on the territory of the Patriarchal Exarchate of Southeast Asia. A report on the current state of the mission in Indonesia was made by students of the preparatory department for foreign students: Sejati Moses, Shakti Gerasim and Simanjuntak Sergiy. In their message, they spoke about the current state of the mission of the Southeastern Exarchate in Indonesia: The preaching of Christianity in Asia is traditionally associated with the name of the Apostle Thomas, one of the closest disciples of the Savior of the World. Today, the clergy of the exarchate, serving in 13 countries and five time zones, are united in 4 dioceses – Singapore, Korea, Thailand and the Philippines-Vietnam. The exarchate employs 75 clerics serving in 79 parishes and spiritually nurturing tens of thousands of parishioners. Most of the communities consist of local residents, Russian compatriots make up about 20%. Striving for the formation of national Orthodoxy, Metropolitan Sergius pays special attention to the training of priests from among the local population, therefore seminarians from South-East Asia study in theological schools in Russia. Special attention was paid to translation activities in Indonesia: students read several passages from the Holy Scriptures in Indonesian. “By reading examples of poems in Tagalog, you can appreciate the beauty of writing and the skill of the authors, regardless of whether you are familiar with Tagalog or not. However, we have a great opportunity to get in touch with the amazing Tagalog poetry in the original,” said the host of the evening, a first–year student of the church-practical department of the magistracy, reader Ivan Ivanov. One of the most striking examples of a poetic text in Tagalog called “The Test of our Life” was read by a student of the preparatory department for foreign students Joasaf Nunez. In the second part of the evening, the main agenda was the topic of the mission of the Russian Orthodox Church in the countries of the African continent. Before the reports, a fragment of an interview with Patriarchal exarch Metropolitan Leonid (Gorbachev) about the current state of missionary service in African countries was shown. “Talking about the mission and the history of African countries is not new for our Theological Academy. In the 60s of the XX century, Metropolitan Nikodim (Rotov) of Leningrad and Novgorod opened the Faculty of African Youth. And from that moment on, students from African countries arrive to study in the Northern Capital,” said the evening’s host, reader Ivan Ivanov.The students’ reports alternated with various musical numbers. It is impossible to talk about the culture of other countries without ever coming into contact with it. In order to include all listeners in the rich culture of Africa, students of the preparatory program for learning the Russian language from the countries of the Patriarchal Exarchate of Africa performed the song “joy for the world”.

Reference: Lenten Memorial Evenings is an annual educational project of the Department of Church History under the leadership of Candidate of Theology, Associate Professor Dmitry Andreevich Karpuk. These evenings highlight the history of the St. Petersburg Theological Academy and the activities of its graduates. SPbDA Press Service