His Grace Bishop Longin makes the archpastoral visit to the parishes in Indiana
From Friday, March 6, until Sunday, March 8, 2010, His Grace Bishop Longin visited the churches in Indiana. With the blessing of His Holiness Patriarch Irinej of Serbia and by the request of Abbess Markina (Zugic), Vladika served Friday evening the All-Night Vigil, beginning at 10pm, at the Stavropigial Patriarchal Monastery of the Nativity of the Mother of God in New Carlisle, Indiana. Divine Liturgy was served in the early hours of Saturday. Deacon Nikolaj Kostur served with His Grace. Along with the nuns, a good amount of faithful from Chicagoland prayed and communed of the Holy Gifts. Following Holy Liturgy, a meal was held in the monastery refectory.
On Saturday evening, His Grace was present at Great Vespers at St. Sava Church in Merrillville. Eight priests and two deacons served Vespers, with the Hierarchical Dean Archpriest-Stavrophor Nedeljko Lunich presiding, as well as parish Priest Marko Matic. At the end, Fr. Sasa Nedic spoke about spiritual life. As always, the Gary parish was an extraordinary host.
On Sunday, Bishop Longin served the Divine Liturgy of St. Basil the Great in Monastery New Carlisle. After the holy service, the faithful gathered around Vladika Longin and spent the afternoon in helpful spiritual discussions. The pious sisterhood of the beautiful monastery awaited and hosted all the guests with great love and in a Christian manner.
That same night, His Grace was present at Lenter Vespers in the Cathedral Church of St. Elijah the Prophet in Merrillville, where Priest Aleksandar Novakovic serves. Nine priests and three deacons served along with the Hierarchical Dean Fr. Nedeljko Lunich. Fr. Aleksandar Savic spoke to all with his pasotral sermon. The priest and Church Board awaited the truly large number of faithful as good hosts.
This Hierarchical visit to the churches in Indiana can be considered a historical event for this part of the Serbian Orthodox Church, in that it was the first time all the clergy of the Chicago Deanery gathered around its Vladika in his Cathedral since the successful reorganization of the Dioceses of the Serbian Orthodox Church in North and South America. Truly, the love and support for the local Bishop was witnessed, along with the brotherly unity of the clergy and the faithful people of God.