Solemn Masses for the Repose of Alexander’s Soul.

Chicago, Nov. 4. – With unique ceremony and in the presence of many distinguished representatives of foreign countries a solemn mass of requiem for the repose of the soul of Emperor Alexander of Russia was celebrated in the little Russian orthodox church of St. Vladimir, on South Center avenue this morning, and was immediately followed by a Te Deum. All the Consuls residing in Chicago and General Miles and staff, representing the United States army, were present. There were also present a large number of representative Russians, Servians, Americans and Russian Jews.

The ceremony commenced when Father Ambrose Vretta, assisted by Father Phelabolis, of the Greek Orthodox Church, issued from the inner sanctuary. The service was chanted almost throughout its entire length, the congregation taking a prominent part in the responses. The language used was old Slavonic. The first service lasted two hours and at its conclusion the priest changed his black vestments for others of a gold color. The Te Deum was then sung by the congregation, vocal music being the only kind employed throughout. When the second ceremony was ended the Russian Consul formally acknowledged allegiance to the new Czar by kissing the cross held out to him by the priest. The opportunity for others to do likewise was also given, but being all American citizens, or desirous of becoming citizens, none followed the example. After the end of the second service the notables were entertained by Father Ambrose in his private rooms and were refreshed by Russian tea and biscuits.

New York, Nov. 4.– Impressive services in memory or the late Alexander III were held to-day in both churches of the Greek orthodox faith in this city. Special prayers were offered up for the repose of the soul of the Czar. The Russian Embassador at Washington sent a letter of thanks for the expressions of sympathy of the New York colony.

St. Petersburg, No. 4. – A Te Deum was sung to-day in the cathedral of St. Issac in the celebration of the reception of Princess Alix, the Czar’s betrothed, into the orthodox church.

Minneapolis, Nov. 4. – Bishop Nicoll, the head of the Orthodox Russian Church, held two services to-day in the Orthodox Russian Church in Southeast Minneapolis. The celebration of a pontifical mass for the new Czar commenced at 9 o’clock in the morning and lasted three hours. Then the new altar of the church was dedicated. The Bishop dictated a number of telegrams in the afternoon, informing the Embassador in Washington that he would be in the city on Friday to sing a requiem for the repose of the soul of the late Czar.

The Morning Call [San Francisco], Monday Morning, November 5, 1894.

Reprinted in the Holy Trinity Cathedral LIFE, Vol. 2, No. 3, November 1994.