100th Anniversary of the Enthronement of Patriarch Tikhon of Moscow

Today, December 4 (November 21 on the Julian Calendar) marks the occasion of the 100th Anniversary of the Enthronement as Patriarch of Moscow and All Rus of St. Tikhon (née Ioann Belavin), who now bears the title of “Patriarch of Moscow and Apostle to America.” His enthronement restored the patriarchal system of church governance that had been abolished by Tsar Peter the Great two centuries earlier.

On October 1, 2017, Archpriest Chad Hatfield, president of St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary, addressed members of the Fellowship of Orthodox Christians in Connecticut (FORCC), a lay group committed to pan-Orthodox cooperation, on the occasion of their 24th Annual Benefit Banquet. In his presentation, Fr. Chad used the writings and evangelical vision of St. Tikhon, regarding a united Orthodox presence in the New World. We are sharing Fr. Chad’s talk on the occasion of this momentous anniversary; you may listen to the podcast here.

Fr. Chad encouraged the faithful to ask: “What can I do set in action and motion the steps that need to be taken in order to complete his vision? What can I do to make a faithful witness? What can I do to join the saint who loved America, and literally gave his life for her? What can I do to serve the Church as he served the Church here, serving it in the name of our Lord—and who has called us to unity in Christ?

“Ask in your prayers what needs to be done by you individually, and corporately through gatherings like this one,” he encouraged. “Ask yourselves what our various churches and parishes can do, our dioceses, our archdioceses, our metropolitanates, to achieve an end to the division and brokenness that the events of history have created and we now live with and accept.

“Pan-orthodox unity: truth or fiction?,” he concluded. “If we do nothing else, we can utter the words, ‘Holy Tikhon, pray unto God for us.’”