August 9, 2020
Beloved Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
Glory to Jesus Christ!
Tomorrow, Sunday, August 9, marks the Fiftieth Anniversary of the Glorification of Saint Herman of Alaska. As I mentioned in my email earlier this week, a solemn celebration had been scheduled to take place this weekend on Spruce Island and at Holy Resurrection Cathedral, Kodiak, with the full participation of the Holy Synod of Bishops, hierarchs and dignitaries from other Orthodox Churches, local and state authorities, and clergy, monastics, and faithful from throughout the world. The current pandemic has prevented this special gathering from taking place and the celebration has been postponed to a yet to be determined date.
Those who participated in the solemn services of the glorification fifty years ago recalled the great Paschal joy which pervaded the celebration as our holy father Herman was listed among the saints. As Saint Seraphim had foretold concerning his on eventual glorification, it was like “Pascha in summer.” While simpler services will still take place tomorrow both on Spruce Island and in Kodiak before Saint Herman’s relics, the joy of the Church in America is not diminished or impeded. We rejoice in the mercies the Lord has shown to the American Church through our heavenly patron for all these fifty years. And, though not present in Alaska for this celebration, we in Phoenix will join all the Orthodox Faithful, in America and abroad, in celebrating this blessed moment in the life and history of the Church in North America. May we, Saint Herman’s loving spiritual children, join in giving thanks to God for the life, example, and intercession of the first American saint.
For more on the 1970 Services of Glorification, the following link provides a wealth of resources, including prayers and liturgical texts, icons, the Life of Saint Herman, and photos take in 1970 during the canonization services:
O blessed Father Herman of Alaska, north star of Christ’s holy Church, the light of your holy life and great deeds guides those who follow the Orthodox way. Together we lift high the Holy Cross you planted firmly in America. Let all behold and glorify Jesus Christ, singing His holy Resurrection. -Tropar Tone 4
Holy Father Herman, pray to God for us!
With love in the Lord,