Christmas service held in Uspensky Cathedral of Penza
Penza, 7 January 2020. PenzaNews. Archbishop Seraphim of Penza and Nizhnelomovsk headed the Christmas service at Uspensky Cathedral of Penza on the night of Tuesday, January 7.
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Orthodox Christians of different ages, including officials, gathered in the church. Among them were Governor Ivan Belozertsev, Chairman of the Legislative Assembly and Secretary of the United Russia regional office Valery Lidin and Penza head Vladimir Mutovkin.
Addressing the parishioners after the liturgy, archbishop Seraphim wished Penza citizens a merry Christmas.
"The celebration that you and I hold every year brings joy and peace to our hearts. We pray that the Lord should grant peace to our country, kindness and happiness to our loved ones. We pray that the Lord should not forget about us, that he should give us a useful life, a life that is connected with Christ," he said.
In turn, congratulating the believers, Ivan Belozertsev, noted that Christmas brings together Orthodox Christians all around the world.
"We wait for this holiday with hope and faith; with hope that our life will be [...] changed for the better, that the Lord will support us in our life, work and labour," the head of the region said.
Governor expressed regret that the Christmas service had not been held in Spassky Cathedral of Penza.
"I would like to say that the restoration of the temple is coming to its logical conclusion. [...] We hope that in July and August it will be opened," Ivan Belozertsev explained.
He reminded that Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia had been invited to the opening ceremony.
Commenting on the words of the head of the region, Archbishop Seraphim called him a benefactor, whose support made preservation, restoration and construction of Orthodox shrines possible.
"For all of us, for the Orthodox people, it is a great joy to have such a governor. Therefore, we will pray for you, Ivan Alexandrovich, and together we will overcome all the difficulties that might occur. God give you health, a lot of strength and many years of life," the archbishop said.