Metropolitan Antony and Bishop Daniel Visit for Patron Saint's Day
On Sunday, December 1, 2013, the Parish of Saint Andrew the First Called Apostle Ukrainian Orthodox Church welcomed His Eminence Metropolitan Antony and His Grace Bishop Daniel to Boston. They were invited by the parish to celebrate our Patron Saint’s Day and to bless the renovated and restored interior of our 60-year-old edifice. Our Hierarchs were presented with flowers by the children of the parish and greeted with the traditional bread and salt by parish president, Jane Yavarow. Very Reverend Roman Tarnavsky, pastor of the church, offered them the cross. Thus began a many faceted morning. The blessing service took place first. The Hierarchs walked throughout the church sprinkling holy water on the newly painted walls. Bishop Daniel took great pleasure in dousing choir members as they sang, “Oh, Lord, Save Thy People”.
Next, 17 year old Sviatoslav Kotyk, was ordained a sub-deacon. Originally from Ukraine, Sviat is an altar server and reads the Sunday epistle regularly in both English and Ukrainian. Metropolitan Antony reminded him of the importance of the reader who must prepare weekly to fully understand what he is reading and to impart it with conviction.
After these services, the bilingual Hierarchical Divine Liturgy began. Serving with our Hierarchs and Fr. Roman were Fr. Anthony Perkins from Woonsocket, RI and Hierodeacon Vasyl from Boston. Seminarian Adrian Mazur joined them from St. Sophia’s Seminary. Metropolitan Antony offered an insightful sermon revolving around the word restoration, not only in the physical sense, but also most importantly, in the spiritual sense. Bishop Daniel offered an especially meaningful prayer for Ukraine in light of the turmoil she has endured in the past and is being confronted with today.
Before the dismissal, a “Testament of Blessing” was bestowed on four of the faithful parishioners of the church: Valentina Dingle and Vera Geba, co-presidents of St. Olha’s Sisterhood, Eugene Moroz, choir director and Jane Yavarow choir director and parish president. This was a surprise and great honor to all who received this blessing.
At the conclusion of the Liturgy, Metropolitan Antony called all of the faithful to the front of the church for a group picture.
While the Liturgy was going on upstairs, a delicious banquet of lobster bisque and baked sole was being prepared by Chef Michael Maggiani, and parishioners Len Kondratiuk, Mark Walling, George Wons, and Dan Smith. Over 130 guests were in attendance in the hall beautifully decorated by Tanya Tereshko-Little. Between the first two courses, mistress of ceremonies, Iryna Warvariv-Priester, directed the audience to the stage to view a welcoming dance by the Ukrainian dance ensemble ISKRA from NJ under the direction of Andrij Cybyk. They performed a number of other dances during the afternoon ending with a lively and crowd rousing hopak. The crowd was also entertained by local talent Sophia Raniuk who performed a piano medley of Ukrainian songs. She then accompanied bass singer Eugene Moroz as he preformed two Ukrainian folk songs.
Jane Yavarow, parish president, welcomed all in attendance and thanked those who contributed to the Restoration Fund. She acknowledged Fr. Roman Tarnavsky and Iryna Warvariv-Priester with whom she worked to fulfill the goals of the Church Restoration Committee. Valentina Dingle, Vera Geba and Pearl Smith were thanked for their contributions, as well.
The day was rounded out with a birthday celebration to honor Joseph Charyna on his 100th birthday. Metropolitan Antony presented him with a “Testament of Blessing”, and birthday wishes from President Barack Obama and Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick. Joseph joins Mary Wons and Mary Schlitz who, in June, both turned 100 years old. Our parish is blessed to have three parishioners in the “Century Club”.
St. Andrew’s Day 2013 was a memorable and joyous occasion for all who worshipped together, broke bread together and shared in the very special fellowship found at our parish.