The Feast of Pentecost in Butte, Montana
On June 8th, the glorious Feast of Pentecost was once again celebrated by the Church of the Holy Trinity in Butte, Montana. Parishioners and clergy of the parish were duly blessed on the occasion by the presence of their beloved hierarch, his Grace, Bishop Maxim, who presided over the Feast.
His Grace arrived late Friday evening and was received as the honored guest at the residence of Mr. and Mrs. David Hicks. During his stay, Bishop Maxim was able to discuss with his hosts and Fr. Russell ideas concerning the future of Orthodox Christianity across the state of Montana and review plans for the much-hoped-for establishment of a monastic community there on the Hickʼs property.
Festivities for the feast-day began with the solemn celebration of Great Vespers Saturday evening, followed immediately by an exceptional hors dʼoeuvres and winetasting event hosted by beloved parishioners, Kevin and Denise Horne.
Following the wine-tasting, Fr. Russell and the parish council of Holy Trinity hosted a small meeting with his Grace in the formal dining room of the Copper King Mansion in uptown Butte. During this special time, representatives of the Kalispell satellite mission presented His Grace with a formal petition to be recognized as mission church of the Serbian Orthodox Diocese of Western America. The meeting, which was a profoundly moving event for everyone present, marked the culmination of several years work on the part of countless people from both communities and the deep pastoral sacrifice of Fr. Russell and his family. The sense of joy and gratitude for Godʼs continued faithfulness to the people of Montana and for the miraculous growth of Orthodox Christianity throughout the state was palpable. After sharing his keen wisdom and insight with the group, bishop Maxim graciously granted their request and raised the Orthodox community in Kalispell, Montana to the status of a mission parish under the patronage of our beloved wonderworker of Alaska, St. Herman.
The following morning, his Grace, Bishop Maxim, presided over the celebration of the festal divine liturgy of Holy Pentecost. Concelebrating with his Grace were clergy of the parish, Fr. Russell Radoicich, Fr. Peter Tobias, and parish deacon, Daniel Kirk. The beautiful liturgy was followed by the festal procession and kneeling prayers of the Vespers of Pentecost.
The banquet following services was graciously hosted by faithful parishioners, Svetlan and Nadelka Krsic –the kumovi of this yearʼs parish Slava. The meal, which showcased both traditional Serbian dishes and local Montana fare, was thoroughly enjoyed by all.
The festivities concluded with several readings from that great defender of the Holy Spirit and hierarch of the Church, St. Basil –beautifully read by parish youth –while parishioners and guests alike were blessed by the remarkable chanting of Bishop Maxim and the singers from Holy Trinityʼs own beloved choir.
Source: Western American Diocese