St. Tikhon of Zadonsk Monastery Celebrates Its Patronal Feast

August 15, 2015   

On August 12-13 the monastery of St. Tikhon of Zadonsk in Waymart, PA celebrated its patronal feast with a festal Vigil and Divine Liturgy. Abbot Sergius (Bowyer) and the monastery brotherhood were joined in the celebration by His Eminence Archbishop Mark of Philadelphia and Eastern Pennsylvania who presided at the Divine Liturgy, dean of St. Tikhon’s Seminary Fr. Stephen Voytovich, as well as a dozen area priests and other visiting clergy, many of whom had been students of St. Tikhon’s Seminary and were trained and nourished in the monastery church.

The feast day saw its biggest crowd in recent years—more than a hundred pilgrims made the journey to America’s oldest Orthodox monastery to celebrate the memory of the great eighteenth century Russian hierarch. The choir consisted of St. Tikhon’s monastics, seminarians, graduates, and members of the broader community under the direction of Musical Director Benedict Sheehan.

In his homily Archbishop Mark remembered St. Tikhon of Zadonsk as someone who “was not only known for his teaching and his writings, and teaching at the seminary and establishing seminaries, but as a person who lived what he preached. It was a part of who he was.” Encouraging the faithful to cultivate a living faith, he concluded: “as we accept the salvation that God earnestly desires us to have, let’s follow the examples of the saints that have gone before us, like St. Tikhon of Zadonsk—that we not only teach the faith by our words, but we teach by our actions. And let us make sure we make every attempt to teach by our actions before our words.”

Icon and relic of St. Tikhon of Zadonsk Icon and relic of St. Tikhon of Zadonsk
The gathered faithful were also blessed with the opportunity to venerate a relic of St. Tikhon of Zadonsk that is housed in the monastery church as well as a celebratory fish dinner provided by the monastery brotherhood.

St. Tikhon’s Monastery is the first Orthodox monastery established in the United States, founded in 1905 by the Patriarch St. Tikhon during his years as a missionary in America, and named in honor of his heavenly patron, St. Tikhon of Zadonsk. In 1938 St. Tikhon’s Seminary was also opened on the land purchased by St. Tikhon.

A photo gallery of the Vigil and Divine Liturgy can be viewed on the monastery's website.


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