Ekaterinburg, May 21, 2018
With the blessing of His Eminence Metropolitan Kirill of Ekaterinburg and Verkhotursky, a series of celebrations dedicated to the 150th anniversary of the birth of Royal Martyr Tsar Nicholas II was held in the Ural capital from May 17 to 19, reports the Ekaterinburg Diocese.
The festive events began on May 17, the great feast of the Ascension of the Lord, with a charitable meeting being held as part of the “Day of the White Flower” annual festival, in which Church, government, business, and public representatives came together to honor the memory of the Royal Martyrs and to contribute to the revival of their philanthropic traditions. All funds raised by the event will go to support the Sisters of Mercy serving in Ekaterinburg hospitals, orphanages, old folks’ homes, and hospices.
The celebrations continued the next day with the “Royal” public forum, in which topical issues of preserving the historical memory of the sovereign were discussed, recognizing the need to recognize the merits of Nicholas II for the development of the Russian state and for an evaluation of the murder of the royal family. The forum brought together historians, philosophers, theologians, and public figures from throughout the country and abroad.
“We have gathered today in the hope that in the 150th year from the birth of Emperor Nicholas II, his example will be in demand, his pleas heard, his initiatives implemented, and that the world would not ignite itself with the fire of the apocalypse. May Holy Rus’ and our entire fragile world be preserved by the prayers of our holy Royal Passion-Bearer! May he be an example for all peoples, and a good father for us,” Met. Kirill said in his address to forum participants.
The imperial ball was held that evening, with an opening ceremony headed by Met. Kirill in which he noted that May 19, the tsar’s birthday, ought to be a national holiday. The day ended with a concert put on by the world famous choir from Moscow’s Sretensky Monastery.
The Divine Liturgy was celebrated in Ekaterinburg’s Church on the Blood the next day in honor of the tsar’s birthday, on the spot where he was martyred for Christ’s sake. The service was led by His Eminence Metropolitan Panteleimon of Veroia and Naousa of the Greek Orthodox Church, who had arrived in Russia specifically to celebrate the tsar’s birthday, and concelebrated by the bishops of the Metropolitanate of Ekaterinburg.
“We have gathered here today in Ekaterinburg precisely because we do not want to live as the evil world lives,” remarked Met. Kirill to the gathered worshipers, “We want to live by the commandments of God, we want to remember everything that was done by our ancestors … and the Lord has given us the opportunity to remember this feat of … one of the most glorious and kind person from among our people throughout its existence—the great Tsar Nicholas Alexandrovich.”
Following the Liturgy, a motor rally was held in the tsar’s honor, with motorcycles adorned with flags with icons of various royal Orthodox saints. The day then continued with the reading of the letters of the members of the royal family, which was locally televised, and the opening of the “Great and Terrible Year of 1918” exhibition, dedicated to the spiritual feat of the Royal Martyrs, the beginning of the Russian civil war, the policies of the new government, and the culture of the period. The exhibition presented original documents, weapons, awards, household items, photos, stamps, coins, and banknotes from 1918, and more. The opening was attended by guests from throughout Russia, and from Greece, Serbia, and Bulgaria, who arrived to honor the holy Tsar Nicholas.
All of “Royal Days” events in May are aimed at educating society about the true role of the last Russian emperor, which will contribute to the restoration of the bright name of Tsar Nicholas II and the study of the true history of Russia.
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