SVOTS Dean Lectures in Toronto, and Serves in London at Anniversary Liturgy
17-22 October 2012 • Off-Campus • Virginia Nieuwsma
One of St. Vladimir's Seminary's foremost road warriors, Dean and Professor of Patristics, The Very Rev. Dr. John Behr, accumulated more frequent flier miles from October 17 through October 22. Father John first traveled north to the Toronto School of Theology in Ontario, Canada, and then across the Atlantic Ocean to London for an embassy reception and the 50th anniversary celebrations of the Moscow Patriarchate's Diocese of Sourozh.
While in Toronto, Fr. John spoke at the Wycliffe Centre for Scripture and Theology, which is under the auspices of Wycliffe College, one of the colleges in the Toronto School, Canada's largest ecumenical consortium. As a featured guest for the conference on "The Rule of Truth," on Friday, October 19, Fr. John spoke on "Irenaeus on the Rule of Truth," about which he has written much. Father John also presented a special open lecture on the Wednesday evening, entltled "Becoming Human: In the Image of Christ," which encompassed the theme of his upcoming SVS Press book Becoming Human, slated for release in the first half of 2013. He also met with Ph.D. students on Thursday morning. Additionally, he spoke at Trinity College, another member of the Toronto School, on the nature of theology, asking students to reflect on the question, "What do we mean, talking about God?"
After wrapping up his time in Toronto, Fr. John flew to London to participate in the 50th anniversary of the Diocese of Sourozh and the fifth anniversary of the reunification between the Russian Orthodox Church and the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia (ROCOR). Following the Saturday evening Vigil on October 20, a "Jubilee Divine Liturgy" was celebrated on the morning of October 21, at the Russian Orthodox Cathedral of the Dormition of the Mother of God in London. The festive services were presided over by His Eminence The Most Rev. Hilarion (Alfeyev), metropolitan of Volokolamsk and chairman of the Moscow Patriarchate Department for External Church Relations of the Russian Orthodox Church, together with His Eminence Hilarion, metropolitan of Eastern America and New York and first hierarch of the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad, as well as other hierarchs present for the occasion.
"It was wonderful to be able to attend these celebrations," noted Fr. John. "My family has been associated with the community in London and the Cathedral at Ennismore Gardens for generations, ever since my great–grandfather, Fr. Nicholas Behr, was sent to London in 1926 by Metropolitan Evlogy."