Alumni and Friends Gather to Say Farewell to Ann Holod Zinzel
14–15 September 2012 • In Memoriam
Ann Holod Zinzel knew the certainty of God’s love for her; for this school and its faculty, staff, and students, past and present; and for the entire Church. In turn, she loved God, and this school, and the Church. Today, we express our love for her. She would like that.
We pray now that our Lord will give her a place where there is no more sickness, sighing, or sorrow, but life eternal. We pray now that she joins her friends and fellow workers from St. Vladimir’s Seminary, in the God’s kingdom. May her “word” to us today be engraved in our hearts, and may her memory be eternal. Amen.
—Fr. Steven Belonick, homilist at the Funeral Service, September 13, 2012
On Friday evening, September 14, and Saturday morning, September 15, the faculty, alumni, and students of St. Vladimir's Seminary, along with family members, gathered for funeral services for Ann Holod Zinzel.
"Today we have the opportunity to say farewell to a person who contributed much to this seminary and to this community," said The Very Rev. Steven Belonick in his Friday evening eulogy. Father Steven is the rector of Holy Ghost Russian Orthodox Church in Bridgeport, CT, and the former Campus Chaplain.
"Ann Zinzel was a fixture of this community, part of its history," continued Fr. Belonick. "All of us who have resided at the Seminary; who have worshiped in this holy place; who have learned in these classrooms; and who have walked these hallowed grounds, at one time or another probably ran into Ann Zinzel; probably had a conversation with her; probably heard stories of days gone by from her. Yes, famous theologians, scholars, and pastors have resided, and still reside here. But in this particular community Ann Zinzel was equally well known."
Several divinely ordained "coincidences" marked the timing of Ann's repose. "Ann died on Eve of the Feast of the Nativity of the Mother of God, which was 50 years to the day that she began her work at St. Vladimir’s," noted Fr. Steven.
Ann's services also commenced immediately following a festal celebration. In the evening of September 13 and the morning of September 14, the community had gathered in Three Hierarchs' Chapel for an all-night Vigil, followed by a morning Liturgy for the Exaltation of the Holy Cross. Just a few short hours transpired between the fading of the last strains of "O Lord, Save Thy People" and the start of Ann's services. The Very Rev. Dr. Chad Hatfield, chancellor/CEO, presided over the Funeral, with assistance from numerous alumni clergy: Fr. Nicholas Solak, Fr. John Frazier, Fr. Benedict Churchill, Fr. John Hopko, Fr. Eric Tosi, Fr. David Koles, Fr. Basil Summer, Fr. John Jillions, Fr. Noah Bushelli, Fr. Sergius Halvorsen, Fr. Alexander Rentel, Fr. Nicholas Solak, Fr. John Kreta, Fr. Dennis Rhodes and Fr. Steven Belonick.
Continuing in the same spirit of reverence and fond remembrance, His Grace The Rt. Rev. Michael, bishop of the Diocese of New York and New Jersey, of the Orthodox Church in America, presided over the Saturday morning Liturgy, as seminary chapel clergy and invited guests concelebrated. At the conclusion of the Divine Liturgy, those gathered celebrated the lite of the Panikhida and then offered the final kiss accompanied by the chanting of the Hymns of Farewell.
At the conclusion of the funeral services, Ann's body was lovingly carried to the waiting hearse by pallbearers, after which she was transported to the cemetery at The Monastery of St. Tikhon of Zadonsk, South Canaan, PA, for interment. Following this, the family hosted a mercy meal in Ann's memory for the Seminary community and guests.