Sunday of the Veneration of the Holy Cross in Merrillville

 On the third Sunday of Lent, the faithful seekers of living faith offered their prayers, together with their priests, in the beautiful St. Elijah Cathedral in Merrillville, Indiana.

This prayerful Lenten celebration was made complete with the presence of the spiritual father of the Diocese of New Gracanica and Midwestern America, Bishop Longin, who together with the clergy and people venerated the Holy Cross of the Lord. Wtih the blessing of Bishop Longin, Deacon Nikolaj Kostur brought the kamilavka of St. John of Kronstadt, which was venerated by the faithful at the end of the service. The service was led by V. Rev. Stavrophhor Nedeljko Lunich, the Dean of the Chicago Deanery, with the con-celebration of priests and deacons.

The prayerful presence and fatherly blessing of Bishop Longin brought spiritual joy to the faithful people who gathered around their bishop for this spiritual occasion. During Vespers the church choir from St. Elijah Cathedral magnificently sang the responses and sang the hymn Before Thy Cross we bow down in worship, O Master, and They holy Resurrection we glorify.

The service was made all the more complete with the well known homilist, pastor and missionary V. Rev. Stavrophor Dennis Pavichevich. During his dynamic homily Prota Dennis reminded all those present that the task of every Christian is that they always make the attempt to carry their cross with diginity, to live according to Christ and in Christ that they might await the feast of the Lord's Resurrection in joy. The homily was sealed with the spiritual message that there is no Resurrection without the Cross, it unimaginable without it. V. Rev. Stavrophor Dr. Milos Vesin spoke afterward of the life and spiritual joy which St. John of Kronstadt left us.

Protonamesnik Aleksandar Novakovic, the cathedral dean, thanked Bishop Longin, the clergy, the students from St. Sava School of Theology in Libertyville and the faithful people for their visit and expressed his hope that we will continue to fight the good fight, keep the faith inviolate so that without reproach be might worship the holy Resurrection.

This prayerful gathering ended with an agape meal prepared by the Cathedral Kolo Sestara. This was truly a beautiful spiritual event at St. Elijah Cathedral in Merrillville, Indiana.