THE RUSSIAN CHURCH.
A Hundredth Anniversary Sermon.
Discourses From Various Pulpits.
A Clergymans Views on the Duties of Citizens Purity of Life.
The hundredth anniversary of the introduction of the Russo-Greek Church in the United States was celebrated in this city at the Russian Church yesterday. In the morning there was a service in the church, which was beautifully decorated for the occasion with flowers, garlands of evergreens and magnificently embroidered banners. The sermon was delivered by Father Greenkevitch, who gave a description of the life of Monk Gherman, who founded the mission of the orthodox church in Alaska. Bishop Nicholas followed with the entire history, rise, progress and present condition of the church in the United States. He told how the mission had spread from Alaska to California, and then within the past forty years in various Eastern States. He mentioned the fact that there are now seven churches in the United States in addition to that in this city, and two more are about to be established, making a total of ten churches.
A message of congratulation sent by Bishop Nichols, the Episcopal Bishop of this diocese, was read by the Russian Bishop to the congregation, and the message thus delivered gave much pleasure.
The music of the occasion included a grand Te Deum, No. 1, by Bortnansky, the Russian composer. The choir was led by Paul Ligda and included Mrs. Miller, Miss Anna Dabovich, sopranos; Miss May Dabovich, Miss Xenia Mitropolsky and John Mitropolsky, altos; N. P. Kedrolivansky and Mr. Kapustin, tenors, and Mr. Zubkovsky, bass.
Deacon Pustinsky was consecrated to the priesthood by the Bishop during the service. Deacon Vasilieff officiated throughout the morning services, and Bishop Nicholas was supported by Rev. Fathers Greenkevitch, Dabovich and Innocentius.
In the afternoon the Greek society marched in a body to the house of the Bishop and there, with several members of the congregation, were entertained at dinner. About 120 people sat down at table and an excellent menu was served. At the close of the dinner Bishop Nicholas rose, and then a Russian anthem was sung, after which he proposed the health of the Emperor and the prosperity of the Holy Synod. The banqueters sang a Russian song, "Many Summers," which is tantamount to "Long life and happiness." The picture of the Metropolitan of Montenegro, an official who ranks higher in the church than a Bishop, was presented and the same song was repeated.
L. Radovich spoke to the toast, "Friendship between the Russian and American nations." He gave a neat epitome of the evidences of friendship between the two nations, and his speech was well received. Toasts were drank to the King of Greece, the Metropolitan of Servia, the President of the United States, the Prince of Montenegro, the Russian Consul Artsimovich and others.
In the evening the children gathered in the school were made acquainted with the sense of the holiday, and as a memento of the occasion a gospel in the Russian language was given to each child. The children were then given a little dinner and enjoyed a dance. The celebration of the day will long remain in the memory of the little ones.
The San Francisco Chronicle, Monday, October 8, 1894, p. 8:1
Reprinted in the Holy Trinity Cathedral LIFE, Vol. 2, No. 2, October 1994.