21 June 2013, 10:00
Russia's Baptism Day to be celebrated in the USA
New York, June 21, Interfax - Not only Ukraine, Russia, Byelorussia and other countries of the Russian Church will celebrate the 1025th anniversary of the Baptism of Kievan Rus, but also a state across the ocean.
On the eve of the jubilee First Hierarch of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia Metropolitan Hilarion called upon the flock to gather for celebrations to the town of Jackson (New Jersey), where a Russian church dedicated to St. Prince Vladimir is located, the ROCOR website reports.
"Many of our clergy and faithful come from various non-Russian backgrounds, and have whole-heartedly embraced the sacred customs and traditions of the Russian Orthodox Church. Let us not fall into the temptation of segregating our Diocese into cultural groups, because as sons and daughters of the Russian Orthodox Church, we are all citizens of Holy Russia," Metropolitan Hilarion said in his address.
He explained that "when we speak of Holy Russia, we are not talking about the Russian Federation or any civil society on earth; rather, it is a way of life that has been passed down to us through the centuries by such great saints of the Russian Land as the Holy Great Prince Vladimir and Great Princess Olga, Venerable Sergius of Radonezh, Job of Pochaev, Seraphim of Sarov, and more recently, the countless New Martyrs and Confessors of the 20th century."
Metropolitan Hilarion reminded that the Russian Church was the first to send missionaries to America, and today their work should be continued, "so that the Light of Christ may continue to shine ever brighter in this great American land," and the only way to achieve it "is to return to our roots and draw inspiration from the past."
"Today, America has need not just of Russia, but of "Holy Russia," for it is only this Russia that represents true spiritual wealth," the metropolitan is convinced.
The Day of Russia's Baptism is celebrated every year on July 28. This year the 1025th anniversary of the Baptism coincides with the 75th anniversary of the founding of St. Vladimir Russian Church in New Jersey built to commemorate the Great Prince who baptized Russia.
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