KODIAK, AK [DOM] – On Sunday, August 7, His Grace Bishop Daniel of Chicago and the Diocese of the Midwest arrived in Kodiak continuing his pilgrimage. Bishop Daniel joins His Eminence Archbishop Benjamin of San Francisco, and the Diocese of the West, and His Grace Bishop Alexei of Sitka, and the Diocese of Alaska for this annual event.
His Grace was greeted at the airport by faculty and students of St. Herman Theological Seminary, along with faithful from the city. They sang “It is Truly Meet” and presented the hierarchs with flowers. The hierarchs then were taken to the historic Holy Resurrection Cathedral in Kodiak, AK, the place were the sacred relics of St. Herman of Alaska reside.
Hierarchs, clergy, and faithful gathered to venerate the relics of St. Herman of Alaska, and to sing the Akathist Hymn before the holy relics of the saint.
At the conclusion of the service, Bishop Alexei welcomed the hierarchs and pilgrims to Alaska and encouraged everyone to reflect on the words of the Akathist that teach about the holiness of the life of the monk Herman. Bishop Daniel anointed those gathered with holy oil from the lamp of St. Herman.
The next day, August 8, a Divine Liturgy was celebrated in memory of St. Jacob Netsvetov, Enlightener of the Peoples of Alaska. His Eminence Archbishop Benjamin of San Francisco, and the Diocese of the West, His Grace Bishop Daniel of Chicago and the Diocese of the Midwest, and His Grace Bishop Alexei of Sitka, and the Diocese of Alaska concelebrated. At the invitation of Bishop Alexei, Bishop Daniel presided over the Divine Liturgy.
Bishop Daniel was also joined by two priests of the Midwest, Priest Alexander Koranda, Cathedral Dean, and Priest Justin Matthew, Associate Priest of Holy Trinity Church, Overland Park, MO, in addition to other local priest of the Diocese of Alaska.
Bishop Alexei preached following the gospel on the importance of becoming “childlike” as the holy scriptures calls on the followers of Christ to do. His Grace reflected on how a child is quick to forgive and move on from trouble, and how a child draws near to their mother for aid, as we are to draw near to our mother, the Church, for aid. He encouraged all to follow these very words of the Lord and to beseech the prayers of St. Herman for assistance.
After the final blessing, Bishop Daniel thanked Bishop Alexei for hosting this important pilgrimage and presented the cathedral community with chalice covers as a gift and asked that the cathedral remember the Diocese of the Midwest in prayer when they are used.
A festive meal was held that afternoon, and later that afternoon, a presentation from the seminary archivist was held on the various historical items and documents contained at the seminary, some of which include handwritten documents of St. Innocent of Alaska.