On Tuesday, December 10, the Holy Trinity Monastery and the Seminary celebrated the Feast of the Kursk-Root Icon of the Mother of God, the “Hodegetria” of the Russian diaspora and the protectress of the Russian Church Abroad. But for the monastic and seminary community this year, this feast was also chosen as an occasion to mark the conclusion to the year-long commemoration of the 400th anniversary since the accession of the Russian Imperial dynasty of Romanov to the throne (1613).
The celebration began with the festal Divine Liturgy in the Holy Trinity Cathedral, presided by the Very Rev. Archimandrite Luke, the Abbot of the Monastery. After the communion verse, a homily was given by Reader Vitaly Permiakov, a member of HTS faculty. At the end of the festal Divine Liturgy, the monastery clergy served a full panikhida (memorial service), remembering in prayer all ruling tsars, emperors and empresses from the House of Romanov which reigned in Russia from 1613 to 1917.
Following the trapeza in the monastery refectory, the monastics, faculty, students, and guests gathered for the festive reception in the Seminary Hall. As the members of the community were gathering, their attention was drawn to an exhibit from the collection of the HTS museum, which contained the items that once belonged to various members of the Romanov family. Some of these items came from the Ipatiev House in Yekaterinburg where the Royal martyrs were held for last several months of their lives, and where they were executed in 1918.
After the words of introduction from Fr Luke and from the Archpriest Vladimir Tsurikov, Director of the Library and Archives, the HTS Librarian Michael Perekrestov gave a presentation concerning the activities of the HTS Museum and Archives over the year dedicated to the memory of the ruling House of Romanov. Mr Perekrestov described the new items which belonged to the members of the Romanov family that are in the possession of the Museum or were recently acquired, and told about the Museum’s participation in various exhibitions celebrating the 400 year anniversary in the United States and in Russia. The presentation noted the positive impression left on the US and Russian public by these exhibitions which challenged the previously widespread negative perception of the person and the reign of the last Tsar.
Following the presentation, the members of the Seminary Choir under the direction of Reader Nicholas Kotar performed hymns from the services to lesser-known Saints who were canonized during the reign of the Tsar Martyr Nicholas II (1894-1917): Sts. Theodosy of Chernigov, John of Tobolsk, Evfrosiniya of Polotsk and others.
The presentation and the concert were followed by a reception in the Seminary Hall.