This year’s work of the Holy Assembly of Bishops of the Serbian Orthodox Church began on Thursday, May 14, 2015 with the Hierarchal Divine Liturgy at the Cathedral church of Saint Archangel Michael in Belgrade.
His Holiness Irinej, Serbian Patriarch, officiated at the Divine Liturgy with the concelebration of many bishops of the Serbian Orthodox Church. Following the Holy Liturgy the rite of Invocation of the Holy Spirit was served. With this service this year’s meeting of the Holy Assembly of Bishops began.
His Grace Bishop Arsenije of Toplica served the Vigil service on the eve of the feast day, on Saturday, May 9th, 2015. On the feast-day itself His Holiness Serbian Patriarch Irinej officiated the Holy Hierarchal Liturgy with the concelebration of Their Graces Bishops Irinej of Australia-New Zealand and Arsenije of Toplica, Vicar of Serbian Patriarch; with the priesthood of the Archbishopric of Belgrade-Karlovci and other dioceses.
Retired Bishop Atanasije of Zahumlje-Herzegovina attended the service, while Church choirs Saint Sava and Mokranjac sang responses.
Sava was the Archbishop of the Serbs. The body of St. Sava was buried in Mileshevo Monastery. During the time of the Turkish tyranny, the Serbian people gathered around the relics of their saint to seek comfort and healing. Fearing that an insurrection might arise from that place against the Turks, Sinan Pasha of Belgrade ordered that the relics of St. Sava be translated to Belgrade and there to be burned on Vracar, April 27, 1594 A.D. With the burning of the relics of this saint, the rabid Pasha did not burn the saint who remained alive before the Throne of God in the heavens and in the hearts of his people on earth.
Source: Prologue of Ochrid
The Holy Great Martyr George the Victory-Bearer, was a native of Cappadocia (a district in Asia Minor), and he grew up in a deeply believing Christian family. His father was martyred for Christ when George was still a child. His mother, owning lands in Palestine, moved there with her son and raised him in strict piety.
When he became a man, St George entered into the service of the Roman army. He was handsome, brave and valiant in battle, and he came to the notice of the emperor Diocletian (284-305) and joined the imperial guard with the rank of comites, or military commander.
On the occasion of this jubilee His Holiness Serbian Patriarch Irinej sent a Message to His Holiness Patriarch Neophite of Bulgaria. – Our Holy Church was represented by His Grace Bishop Pahomije of Vranje at celebrations at Priska.
The anniversary celebrations of the Baptism of Bulgarians were held on May 2nd, on the feast-day of Saint tsar Boris – Michael, the Equal-among-the-Apostles. A triumphant solemn Pan-Orthodox Liturgy was celebrated within the great basilica at Priska. His Holiness Patriarch Neophyte officiated the Divine Liturgy while 27 hierarchs, representing all local Orthodox Churches, concelebrated.