Orthodox Easter ceremony in Russia’s biggest Cathedral 2009

 

 

Orthodox Christians around the world are celebrating Easter, the most important Feast day in the Christian calendar. Thousands gathered for the ceremony at the Christ the Saviour Cathedral in Moscow.

According to Christian belief, Jesus was resurrected from the dead three days after his crucifixion. Christians celebrate this resurrection on Easter Day (also known as Easter Sunday). In Russia, Easter is the major Feast day culminating with the end of the seven-week season of Lent — a period of fasting, prayer, and penance.

Easter Service

Millions of Orthodox Christians across Russia turned their eyes tonight to the country’s main Cathedral — Christ the Saviour — where the Easter service began on the eve of Easter Sunday.

The words “Christ is risen, Christ is risen indeed!” rang out at the doors of the Moscow cathedral at midnight, following the traditional procession around the cathedral. The ceremony was led by Kirill, Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia. This is the first Easter service held by Kirill as Russia’s Patriarch. The solemn Divine service is sung by the Cathedral Choir — the Moscow Patriarchal Choir of Christ the Saviour Cathedral — under the direction of Dr. Ilya Tolkachev.

People had been queuing for hours to enter the cathedral and light their candles from the Holy Fire. The flame had been brought from Jerusalem, where it appeared on Saturday in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in what is deemed an annual miracle by believers. Every year, the Holy Fire is brought to Russia — its first stop was the country’s main Christ the Saviour Cathedral. Afterwards, it will be delivered to destinations across Russia, including the North Pole.

For the first time, this year the Easter service at the Christ the Saviour Cathedral was held in 18 languages, including Chinese — to signify the unity of all Orthodox Christians across the world.

The list of VIP guests attending the service included President Dmitry Medvedev and Prime Minister Vladimir Putin.

 

© TV News Russia Today | Cathedral of Christ the Saviour in Moscow (18/19.04.2009)

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