On Sunday, September 23rd, under beautiful Saskatoon skies, His Beatitude Patriarch Sviatoslav honored the Ukrainian Sisters of St. Joseph with a visit to their Khram dedicated to the Venerable Nun Martyrs Olympia and Laurentia. After walking three times in procession around the Khram His Beatitude, together with their Excellencies Bryan Bayda, Eparch of Saskatoon; Michael Wiwchar, Bishop Emeritus of Saskatoon; and Stephan Meniok, Exarch of Donetsk-Kharkiv, Eastern Ukraine, as well as, several members of the Clergy and Sisters entered into it and celebrated a Moleben to the Nun Martyrs.
During the service His Beatitude blessed the newly erected iconostas and icon to the 27 Martyrs on the inside of the Khram, as well as, the new entrance bell tower and multi-purpose building on its grounds. Inside the new building, which is being referred to as “The Ark”, given its shape and the fact that it was successfully built during a record rainy season, His Beatitude also blessed a well which is central to it, as well as, the water flowing from it.
Over 350 faithful participated in this historical event which marked the official completion of this multi-facility complex which includes a Monastery for the Sisters; a Khram to the Venerable Nun Martyrs Olympia and Laurentia in which their crucial elements and Our Lord and Saviour are ever present; a Trapezna building in which food is served and displays are held; the entrance archway which also serves as a bell tower; and, the new “Ark” which will house an Icon Corner and Martyrs Museum, the well/fountain, a coffee bar and meeting room, as well as, washroom facilities and a huge outdoor covered patio. Once all of these amenities are fully in place and functional the complex will be opened as a pilgrimage destination site.
The Ukrainian Sisters of St. Joseph of Saskatoon sincerely thank His Beatitude for praying with them and blessing the new installations at the Khram complex; and, in the words of Venerable Olympia continue to give “Glory to God for Everything”.