When the Most-holy Virgin Mary reached the age of three, her holy parents Joachim and Anna took her from Nazareth to Jerusalem to dedicate her to the service of God according to their earlier promise. It was a three-day journey from Nazareth to Jerusalem but, traveling to do a God-pleasing work, this journey was not difficult for them. Many kinsmen of Joachim and Anna gathered in Jerusalem to take part in this event, at which the invisible angels of God were also present. Leading the procession into the Temple were virgins with lighted tapers in their hands, then the Most-holy Virgin, led on one side by her father and on the other side by her mother. The virgin was clad in vesture of royal magnificence and adornments as was befitting the “King’s daughter, the Bride of God” (Psalm 45:13-15).
Following them were many kinsmen and friends, all with lighted tapers. Fifteen steps led up to the Temple. Joachim and Anna lifted the Virgin onto the first step, then she ran quickly to the top herself, where she was met by the High Priest Zacharias, who was to be the father of St. John the Forerunner. Taking her by the hand, he led her not only into the Temple, but into the “Holy of Holies,” the holiest of holy places, into which no one but the high priest ever entered, and only once each year, at that. St. Theophylact of Ohrid says that Zacharias “was outside himself and possessed by God” when he led the Virgin into the holiest place in the Temple, beyond the second curtain-otherwise, his action could not be explained. Mary’s parents then offered sacrifice to God according to the Law, received the priest’s blessing and returned home.
These days the Diocese of Western America has a special honor and joy to welcome again Bishop Grigorije of Zahumlje-Herzegovina who brought us all blessings of sacred places, martyrs and saints of Herzegovina.
On 25th Sunday after Pentecost, with the blessing of Bishop Maxim of Western America, Bishop Grigorije of Zahumlje-Herzegovina celebrated the Holy Hierarchal Liturgy at the Cathedral church of Saint Stephen the First-Crowned in Los Angeles.
His Holiness Serbian Patriarch Irinej awarded Mr. Alexandar Porfiriyevich Torshin, First Deputy President of the Council of the Assembly of the Russian Federation and the founder of the International Humanitarian Fundation "Saint Sabbas the Sanctified" for the Preservation of Christian Sacred Places in Kosovo and Metohija, with the Order of Holy King Milutin during the ceremony at the Serbian Patriarchate in Belgrade today, on 2 December 2014 .
The solemn award ceremony was attended by the members of the Holy Synod of Bishops Their Graces Bishop Lavrentije of Sabac, Vasilije of Srem, Hrizostom of Zvornik-Tuzla and Teodosije of Raska-Prizren.
Joint Declaration of His Holiness Pope Francis and His All-Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew1. December 2014 - 12:56
We, Pope Francis and Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, express our profound gratitude to God for the gift of this new encounter enabling us, in the presence of the members of the Holy Synod, the clergy and the faithful of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, to celebrate together the feast of Saint Andrew, the first–called and brother of the Apostle Peter.
Our remembrance of the Apostles, who proclaimed the good news of the Gospel to the world through their preaching and their witness of martyrdom, strengthens in us the aspiration to continue to walk together in order to overcome, in love and in truth, the obstacles that divide us.
Metropolitan Amfilohije pays canonical visit to the Diocese of Buenos Aires and South-Central America1. December 2014 - 11:48
His Eminence Amfilohije, Archbishop of Cetinje and Metropolitan of Montenegro and the Littoral, as Bishop-Administrator of the Diocese of Buenos Aires and South-Central America arrived to Buenos Aires on 24 November 2014.
The clergy of the Diocese, representatives of the Administration of the parish in Buenos Aires with the president of the church-school congregation and protodeacon Nikola Radisa as well as a few parishioners welcomed His Eminence int the Cathedral church of the Nativity of the Most Holy Mother of God. Bishop John of Caracas and South America of the Russian Orthodox Church in Exile was among those who welcomed His Eminence.
On Sunday, November 30, 2014, the Ecumenical Patriarchate celebrated its Thronal Feast on the occasion of the Feast of St. Andrew, First-Called of the Apostles, at the Patriarchal Church of St. George.
Typically each year, over the last fifty years, formal visitations take place with the Church of Rome and delegations from each Church are sent by their Primates to attend the patronal feast of the other.