On September 28 (October 11 New Style), the Church celebrates the memory of the Venerable Fathers and God-pleasers of the Kiev Caves Monastery, reposing in the Near Caves.
During World War II, the Dormition Cathedral of the monastery was blown up by the Soviets. Fortunately, before this, many valuable holy things were saved from destruction, and after the war, a large tabernacle of relics from the Kiev Caves Lavra was gifted to the monastery by refugee fathers from the monastery. One of the first decisions made by Vladyka Luke, when becoming abbot of the monastery in 2008 ,was to establish a feast in the monastery of the Kiev Caves Fathers.
This year this feast was especially poignant since we were blessed by the presence of Archimandrite Leonty from the Kiev Caves Lavra, who participated in the celebration of the Divine Liturgy. Vladyka stated that the Lord Himself arranged this visit to fall on this feast precisely. Also quite remarkable is the fact that this brings to our attention the horrible suffering in Ukraine presently with the persecution of the canonical Orthodox Church in Ukraine, which is facing possibly being outlawed by the current government, a church which has been present in that war-torn country for over one thousand years and is the largest church and the traditional faith of the majority of the people of Ukraine.
During the liturgy, Vladyka ordained Deacon Theodore Foley to the priesthood. Priest Theodore is a student in our Master’s Program and hopes to serve in a new mission in Alabama.