English-language pilgrimage to Cyprus in March announced

Moscow, December 2, 2017

    

An 8-day English-language pilgrimage to the island nation of Cyprus in March has been announced, and applications are now being accepted. The pilgrimage is organized and sponsored by the Orthodox Christian Discussion Club based at Moscow’s Valaam Podvoriye. The club holds weekly English-language spiritual discussions, featuring relevant passages from the Holy Scriptures and the Fathers of the Church. The discussions are a great way for people to study and practice English, and also to learn more about their Orthodox faith and grow closer to Christ in His Church. More detailed information about the club is available in a video presentation and on its website (both in Russian).

The club also organizes pilgrimages, with the latest being to Cyprus, March 3-10, 2018. The pilgrimage will be led by an Orthodox American with ten years of experience in leading tours, who also speaks four languages, including Russian and Greek.

Highlights of the tour include Divine Liturgy at the Kykkos Monastery, conversations with local monastics, veneration of the relics of St. Lazarus and Sts. Cyprian and Justina, a visit to the Trooditissa Monastery, lively spiritual discussions, and possibly a meeting with Metropolitan Athanasios of Limassol, a true bulward of Orthodoxy.

The cost of the pilgrimage is €850 plus airfare.

For those interested, further information is given below, including a detailed itinerary, and contact information for joining the pilgrimage.

***

KEY INFORMATION

Outstanding guide -- Alexander Frel:

Orthodox American

10 years of leading pilgrimage tours

Speaks 4 languages, including Russian and Greek

Master of Philology

Tour’s special features: Liturgy at the Kykkos Monastery, conversations with monastery brothers, traditional club discussions, possibly a meeting with the Metropolitan of Limassol

Veneration of holy objects includes the relics of St. Lazarus, the friend of the Lord, a short supplicatory services at the relics of Sts. Cyprian and Justina, and also at the Trooditissa Monastery for child bearing

Approximate cost: €850 (excl. air-tickets, details below)

Hotel: 3-star hotel, twin rooms, half board (breakfast and dinner)

Contacts: Roman: +7-926-113-98-88, R.Chustuzian@gmail.com

PILGRIMAGE TOUR’S PROGRAM

Day 1 | March 3 | Saturday

Arrival at Larnaca

Lunch

Transfer to the Troodos Mountains

Church of the Mother of God Asinou “Healer” (XI c.) at the Nikitari village. Frescoes (XII – XVII c.), architecture

Skete of St. Seraphim of Sarov at the Skouriotissa village

Kykkos Monastery. Dinner. Night at the monastery guest house

Day 2 | March 4 | Sunday

Kykkos Monastery: Divine Liturgy. Veneration of the wonderworking Kykkos Icon of the Mother of God and the saints’ relics. Mountain top above the monastery, where the Cross processions go with the Kykkos icon in times of draught. Tomb of Archbishop Macarios. Breakfast. Monastery’s museum. Room check out.

Kalopanayiotis village: Church of St John Lampadistis, veneration of his precious head

Meniko village: St. Cyprian Church, pieces of the precious heads of Sts. Cyprian and Justina

Short supplicatory service to Sts. Cyprian and Justina at their relics, served by the church’s rector

St. Herakleidios Monastery at Politiko village

Bus transfer to Limassol

Dinner and night at a Limassol hotel

Day 3 | March 5 | Monday

Breakfast

St. Nicholas Monastery at Statos village. In the X c., where St. Athanasios the Athonite lived

Chrysorroyatissa Monastery. The monastery has a restoration center, a Byzantine museum, and a museum of modern Cypriot paintings

St. Neophytos Monastery. St. Neophytos’ relics. Cave church and its frescoes

St. Nicholas Monastery at Akrotiri

Dinner and night at the Limassol hotel

Day 4 | March 6 | Tuesday

Breakfast

Stavrovouni Monastery. A cross with a piece of the Holy Life-Giving Cross granted by Empress St. Helen. This is a strict monastery, women are not allowed to enter. The women will visit a church or skete nearby

St. Thekla’s Convent at Mosfiloti. Relics of St. Thekla. The convent’s church is built upon a wonderworking spring (both mud and water)

Church of the Life-Giving Cross of the Lord at a picturesque village Lefkara. This church also has a piece of the Precious Cross, which the women can venerate as well.

Walk in the village, which has many shops with traditional Cypriot homemade products

Dinner and night at the Limassol hotel

Day 5 | Free time | March 7 | Wednesday

Breakfast

Dinner and night at the Limassol hotel

Day 6 | March 8 | Thursday

Breakfast

Monasteries of the Mother of God:

Amirous

Trikoukiotissa

Trooditissa. One of the monastery’s holy objects is the belt, through which help with child bearing is granted. For women, who are in a Church marriage, the monastery’s priest says prayers for child bearing, with the belt being put on

Omodos village: church of the Elevation of the Cross. Bonds of Christ, precious head of Apostle Philip

Dinner and night at the Limassol hotel

Day 7 | March 9 | Friday

Breakfast

St. George Alamanos Convent. Wonderworking icon with a piece of St. George’s relics

Larnaca: Cathedral of St. Lazarus, the friend of the Lord, relics of St. Lazarus. Walk in the old town

Machairas Monastery

Dinner and night at the Limassol hotel

Day 8 | March 10 | Saturday

Breakfast. Transfer to the airport. Departure to Moscow

Note: the program is preliminary and can be changed, including shifting the Kykkos Monastery visit.

2-3 discussions in English are planned for the evenings.

Payment:

If you are based in Russia:

Until December 25 (inclusively): €200

Until January 29 (inclusively): €900

Total: €1100

The total payment covers air tickets (see below), stay at a 3-star hotel (6 nights) and at the Kykkos Monastery (1 night), half board (breakfast and dinner), guide’s services, transfers to / from Larnaca’s airport, and bus trips during the pilgrimage

If you are based outside Russia:

Until December 25 (inclusively): €200

Until January 29 (inclusively): €650

Total: €850

The total payment covers stay at a 3-star hotel (6 nights) and at the Kykkos Monastery (1 night), half board (breakfast and dinner), guide’s services, transfers to / from Larnaca’s airport, and bus trips during the pilgrimage

***

The total payment amount is approximate. It can change due increasing cost of the air tickets and hotel stay, as the departure date approaches, and due to possible changes in the RUB/EUR rate

Starting from December 25, the payments may not be returned in case the pilgrimage group member refuses to participate in the tour

Entering the pilgrimage group:

The main part of the group is expected to be formed by December 25

Candidates are added to the group upon the first payment of €200

After December 25, it is possible to be added to the group only in the event that vacant places are available. Furthermore, the cost of the tour is likely to increase as the departure date approaches

In order to participate in the pilgrimage tour one should:

Take part in a one-on-one conversation, common organizational meetings, and a dedicated Church service for traveling

Have an international passport, issued at least 7 months before the date of departure to Cyprus, and valid until the date of departure from Cyprus

Provide information required to obtain the pro-visa (issued in 1-2 days at no cost)

Have money to cover out-of-pocket expenses (mainly lunches – approx. €20/day). Recommended minimum amount is: €160 - €240 (€20- €30/day)

Air travel (for those based in Russia):

March 3, Moscow – Larnaca: Aeroflot flight SU2072. Departure from Sheremetyevo at 10:35 am, arrival at 13:30

March 10, Larnaca – Moscow: Aeroflot flight SU2073. Departure at 14:40, arrival at Sheremetyevo at 19:40

Time above is local

12/2/2017

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