Source: Holy Dormition-Svyatogorsk Lavra
July 3, 2016
On July 3, 2016, the day of commemoration of All Saints who have shone forth in the Russian Land, from the Holy Dormition-Svyatogorsk Lavra began the All-Ukrainian cross procession of peace, love, and prayer for Ukraine, organized by the Ukrainian Orthodox Church with the blessing of His Beatitude Metropolitan Onuphry of Kiev and All Ukraine. On the eve of the procession His Beatitude emphasized in his letter to his flock the uniqueness of the present cross procession. According to the primate of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, “it’s not just our spiritual podvig, but is a conscious, willful act of every Christian soul which follows the Gospel commandments in deed. Therefore, just to contemplate a procession is not enough. It is the time to manifest our Christian conscience.”
With the singing of a Moleben the All-Ukrainian cross procession began its movement precisely at 2:30 towards the village of Bogorodichnoe, where the Lavra’s skete in honor of the “Joy of All Who Sorrow” icon of the Mother of God is located. More than 1500 faithful took part in the beginning of the cross procession. With the blessing of the archimandrite of the Svyatogorsk Lavra and of His Eminence Hilarion, Metropolitan of Donetsk and Mariupol, the All-Ukrainian cross procession was headed by the hierarch of the Svyatogorsk Lavra His Eminence Arseny of Svyatogorsk, and His Eminence Vladimir, Archbishop of Dnipropetrovsk and Tsarichanka.
During the procession the hymn to the Most Holy Theotokos “Rejoice O Unwedded Bride” was collectively sung, followed by “Rejoice Virgin, Theotokos!”
The procession arrived to the village of Bogorodichnoe at 4:30 where it was met at the foot of the monastery by the local procession of clergy having pastoral care over the skete of the Lavra, and the monastery’s nuns who carried out the Bleeding Smolensk Hodigitria icon of the Most Holy Theotokos. A Moleben was served before this icon and the miraculous Svyatogorsk icon of the Mother of God, with all welcome to venerate the icons and to be anointed with holy oil. The mothers of the Bogorodichnoe monastery also prepared a small meal for all who desired.
At 5:30 the procession headed for the village of Dolyna, where the Svyatogorsk Lavra is building its St. George skete. There the participants had dinner and stayed overnight, heading for the city of Izium through the village of Kamenka on July 4.