Hundreds of Penza residents come to cathedrals on Christmas night
Penza, 7 January 2018. PenzaNews. Several hundreds of Orthodox Christians met Christmas in Penza cathedrals on the night of Sunday, January 7.
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The service in the Uspensky cathedral of the city was headed by Archbishop Seraphim of Penza and Nizhnelomovsk.
The governor Ivan Belozertsev, the deputy chairman of the Penza region government Vasily Trokhin, the vice speaker of the Legislative Assembly of the region Vyacheslav Kosmachev, the mayor Victor Kuvaytsev and the city head Valery Savelyev were among those who came to pray in the cathedral.
After the Holy Service, the Archbishop read the Christmas message from His Holiness Kirill, Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia, which stated that 2017 was filled with memories about the tragic events of the 20th century and the persecution of faith.
"The world exists despite the forces of evil, while human love and family values exist despite the incredible efforts to destroy, to desecrate and to pervert them. Faith in God is alive in the hearts of most people, and our church was, remains and will always be a meeting place with Christ despite decades of persecution in the recent past and the neglected mechanisms of undermining its authority in the present. We believe that, having passed through present ordeals, the peoples of historical Russia will preserve and update their spiritual unity, will become materially and socially prosperous," the message reads.
After the Holy Service, the Archbishop Seraphim congratulated everyone on Christmas noting that what is incomprehensible to the mind is often revealed through faith.
"This year is not going to be easy for us. We will have to make a very important and necessary choice for some years to come because by defining the person who will rule our country, we determine the path the country will go. I would like people to approach it with all responsibility," he added.
Then the word was given to Ivan Belozertsev, who explained that during the service he had thanked God for the last year.
"I asked [...] that 2018 should be successful for Russia and the Penza region, that peace should be in our land, that Lord should give each family and each person health, well-being and success," the governor said.
In conclusion, Archbishop Seraphim once again congratulated church members on Christmas and wished them peace and good.