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The Feast Day of St Catherine

Yesterday was the feast of Saint Catherine, and her feast day was the occasion for much joy. We had invited Patriarch Theophilos of Jerusalem, who had planned to attend together with Metropolitan Aristarchos, the librarian of the patriarchal library. But the Greek ambassador to Israel advised against their travel at this time. As a result, we only had two visiting hierarchs, Bishops Gabriel and Theophylaktos from the Patriarchate of Alexandria. A number of talented chanters had come from Greece, and the service was broadcast live over the Piraeus radio station. There were also many Russians. Of the fourteen priests who celebrated the Divine Liturgy, seven were from Russia. The lamps and ca