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On Saturday 21 March and Sunday 22 March we had services for the Third Sunday in Great Lent, the Sunday of the Veneration of the Cross and the day of commemoration of the Holy Forty Martyrs of Sebaste (+ c.320 AD).  As Saturday 21 March was a day of commemoration of the departed a general pannikhida was served prior to the Saturday evening service.  In accordance with the instructions of the Synod of Bishops of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia we commemorated their Beatitudes the ever-memorable Metropolitans Anthony and Anastassy; the Metropolitans Philaret, Vitaly and Laurus; our ever-memorable Diocesan hierarchs Archbishops Theodore, Savva, Theodosy, Afanasy, and Paul; our parish founder Archpriest John Lupish and his matushka Maria; our church builders Alexander Medwedew, Vitaly Korotkich, and Michael Shalimov, and all who laboured with them; all those who for Christ and the Russian Church laboured in divers lands, and the other archpastors, pastors, founders and benefactors of the Russian Diaspora; for the elect sons and daughters of the Church of Russia, who faithfully struggled for her unity, good estate and honour in the realms of piety, blessedness, governance, the protection of the persecuted and the veneration of the New Martyrs and Confessors; and for all our righteous ancestors, and for their peaceful repose and blessed memory.  Matins with the bringing out of the Cross was served on Saturday evening.  As there was a Public Health Order in place limiting the number of people who could be inside our small church at any one time, Divine Liturgy on Sunday morning was served outside in the church grounds.  At Divine Liturgy the Prayer in time of Devastating Epidemic was read and the newly-baptised infant Timothy Martin received Holy Communion for the first time.  In his sermon our parish rector spoke about Cross as the emblem of Christ’s victory over sin and death and of its being set forth at the mid-point of Great Lent to encourage us.  He also spoke about the steadfastness in the face of bitter persecution of the Holy Forty Martyrs of Sebaste and of their enduring example to us.

Services on 21-22 March, the Third Sunday in Great Lent - 22/03/2020

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