On the feast of the Nativity of Christ, which the Church celebrates on January 7 (December 25 on the Julian Calendar), two divine liturgies were celebrated in the St. Matrona of Moscow Cathedral in Miami, the main churchof the Slavic Orthodox Vicariate of America.
Services began on Christmas Eve with the clergy performing the All-Night Vigil service. In continuation of the long-standing tradition of the Cathedral, the icon of the Nativity of Christ was carried in procession around the church by a large group of parishioners and guests, accompanied by festive hymns performed by the choir and led by the clergy. This was followed at midnight by the Divine Liturgy celebrated by the Vicar of the Slavic Vicariate, Archimandrite Alexander, assisted by Archpriest Vitaly Yakimchuk and Fr. Maxim Pliskov.
At the end of the service, Archimandrite Alexander congratulated all those gathered in the Cathedral to celebrate Christmas and wished that the grace of the newborn Divine Child would help everyone in their quest for spiritual perfection and to perform good deeds. He further hoped that the Star of Bethlehem would sanctify the true path of life, which must certainly lead to God.
Archimandrite Alexander then thanked the parishioners and workers of the Cathedral who decorated it with flowers for the festive divine service, as well as the choir director and singers, who glorified the newborn Lord with their voices and talents. As their abbot, he thanked the nuns and volunteers for continuous readings of the Psalms, which are performed in the church daily. He expressed gratitude to everyone whose prayers and active or material assistance contributed to the beautification and development of the holy St. Matrona of Moscow Cathedral. Last year a faience iconostasis, the first in America, was installed in the cathedral as well as a unique memorial table. Internal repairs were also carried out. In conclusion, Archimandrite Alexander stressed that at each divine service prayers are offered for all the builders and beautifiers of the Cathedral, which will not stop until the end of time.
On the morning of January 7, a second Divine Liturgy in the Cathedral was celebrated by Fr. Peter Prokoptsov on the side of the church with a movable altar where the first Liturgy was celebrated 11 years before.