Feast Day celebrations of Saint Vladimir’s Church in Edmonton

Thursday July 15/29 we gathered to celebrate the feast of our heavenly patron Equal to the Apostles Great Prince Vladimir, Enlightener of the Russian Lands.
Visiting was Abbess Ambrosia from the Protection Convent in Bluffton, Alberta accompanied by one of the sisters. The weekday liturgy was served in English with many of those attending communicating of the Holy Mysteries. Archpriest Andrew delivered a sermon in which he cited Great Prince Vladimir’s conversion process. How he,  being still very much a Pagan and indulging in a “wild, sensual life”  nevertheless ruled his land with “truth valour and reason.” Our Lord then inspired him with the understanding of the vanity of this life and idolatrous delusion. How his life so dramatically changed and those virtues he embodied were perfected through Christ. How this conversion changed not only the Great prince but indeed the entire land totally transforming the very nature of Russian people. Then Fr. Andrew mentioned how fleeting our efforts in this world are… he cited a few examples how places he grew up in and lived at had changed dramatically when given over to others who did not share the same vision. How all the efforts and sweat of himself and his parents to improve these places where left to decay and “one wouldn’t even know we where there…” How the evil one tries to fill us with nostalgia and regrets. How if we neglect to keep our focus on the heavenly kingdom and the fleetness of this life we become distressed with these “vapors…” he went on to mention that of course we enjoy the things of this life within reason and boundary but our foundation is that “we live for the life of the age to come…” and to think on these vapors, regrets and sorrows can be very destructive to our souls.
Father Andrew then read an email from Archbishop Andronik to the parish that Vladika sent that very morning just before service began. He greeted his parish with the feast informing us the he served a molebian for us all that very morning ( his time zone is two hours ahead of us) and exhorting us to stand firm, having faith in Our Lord to deliver us all from the present tribulations as Our Lord had in the past. Vladika’s kindness and pastoral care towards us only strengthened our bond to him. We all thanked Our Lord for such an Archpastor.
(L-R) Sister Mary, Abbess Ambrosia, Archpriest Andrew sharing anecdotes during trapeza.
The Nun’s arrival before service
Entrance with the Gospel (Little Entrance) of Liturgy
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Everyone prostrating during the prayer to Great Prince Vladimir at the end of Liturgy
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Some of the children receiving communion
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