Tuscany, Italy, January 22, 2021
A new Orthodox community appropriately celebrated its first Divine Liturgy on January 19, the feast of the Divine Liturgy, commemorating the Lord’s Baptism and the first manifestation of the Holy Trinity to the world.
The service was celebrated by Fr. John Malysh of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church in the old medieval town of Pietrasanta in northern Tuscany in the 9th-century Pieve di Santo Stefano church, Fr. John reports on his Facebook page.
The priest was specifically sent by the Ukrainian Orthodox Church to pastorally care for the Ukrainian diaspora in Italy.
Prayers for peace in Ukraine were read during the Liturgy, and the rite of the Great Blessing of the Waters was celebrated afterwards. The waters of the local mountain river were also blessed.
The community began to form about a year ago from Orthodox residents of various local towns, Fr. John writes. Since then, they had been looking for an appropriate place to hold services.
“I hope that with God’s help, we will soon begin to celebrate the Divine services regularly!” the Ukrainian cleric writes.