Serbian Orthodox Church
Military flags of the Army of Serbia were consecrated at St. George Church in Oplenac on 22 April 2015. The ceremony was officiated by His Grace Bishop Arsenije of Toplica, Vicar Bishop of the Patriarch of Serbia and clergy. The tradition of consecration of Military Flags in Serbian history started with the Karadjordjevic Royal Family. Previous ceremonies were conducted in the presence of HM King Peter I (great grandfather of HRH Crown Prince Alexander) in 1911 and HM King Alexander I (grandfather of HRH Crown Prince Alexander) in 1930.
Mr Predrag Markovic, member of the Crown Council represented His Royal Highness Crown Prince Alexander at the ceremony, to support the reinstalling of this glorious tradition. On behalf of the Army of Serbia there were General Major Vojin Jondic, Brigadier General Jelesije Radivojevic and Colonel Sasa Milutinovic.
On the Saturday of Bright Week, April 18 2015, at the St. Steven’s Cathedral in Alhambra, Los Angeles, the Feast of Our Lady Queen of the Angels (Los Angeles) was celebrated for the first time, as we read from the Synaxarion: On this day, the Saturday of Bright Week, we celebrate the Synaxis of our All-holy Lady the Theotokos and Ever-virgin Mary, the Queen of all and Sovereign Lady of the Angels, protectress and unfailing intercessor of our holy diocese of Los Angeles.
The special liturgical service (Akolouthia) for this Feast-day was composed on the Holy Mountain of Athos by Athanasios, Hieromonk of Simonopetra Monastery, Hymnographer of the Holy Great Church of Christ, at the request of His Grace Bishop Maxim of Western America. The Service was translated from Greek language into English by Norman Russell.
On Holy Thursday, 9th April 2015, His Beatitude Theodoros II, Pope and Patriarch of Alexandria and All Africa, officiated at the Service of the Holy Passion in the Church of Ss Constantine and Helen in Cairo, together with His Grace Chrysostomos, Bishop of Berenice.
Just a little before midnight on Saturday, April 11, 2015, the Blessed Sabbath, His Grace Bishop Maxim, the clergy, and the Orthodox faithful gathered at the Saint Steven's Cathedral to participate in the Feast of Feasts, Great and Holy PASCHA, the Resurrection of Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
As the children of the Youth Chorale chanted the verse "Come Receive the Light", His Grace offered the Paschal Light of Christ to the faithful and after receiving the unwaning light the Easter procession around the Church began as the clergy and faithful sang, "The angels in heaven, O Christ our Saviour, sing of Thy resurrection. Make us on earth also worthy to hymn Thee with a pure heart". After returning to the closed doors at the front of the church, His Grace announced the Resurrection of Christ and the Easter Troparion was sung, "Christ is Risen from the dead, trampling down death by death and upon those in the tombs bestowing life".
On the morning of Great & Holy Saturday, April 11th, 2015, the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy was held in commemoration of burial of Christ and His descent into Hades. His Grace Bishop Maxim concelebrated the Divine Liturgy with the Diocesan Deacon Zoran Aleksic and Rev. Norman Kosanovich. The choral responses were sung by the Cathedral Cantors led by V. Rev. Nicholas Ceko, the Cathedral Dean. The faithful who were present prayerfully participated in the Blessed Sabbath Service.
On Great & Holy Friday, April 10th, 2015, His Grace Bishop Maxim, together with the clergy and faithful of Saint Steven's Cathedral solemly commemorated the sufferings of Christ, the mockergy, the crown of thorns, the scourging, the nails, and thirst, the vinegar and fall, the cry of the desolation, and all the Savior edured on the Cross.