His Grace, Bishop JOSEPH Visits St. Tikhon Seminary and Monastery - 03/01/07South Canaan, Pennsylvania
At the invitation of the Very Reverend Michael Dahulich, Dean of St. Tikhon Seminary, and with the blessing of His Beatitude, Metropolitan HERMAN, Primate of the Orthodox Church in America, His Grace, Bishop JOSEPH made his first visit to St. Tikhon Seminary and Monastery during an academic year. Sayidna previously visited the Monastery in the summer of 1995 shortly after his arrival in the United States.
Sayidna arrived at the Monastery Church on Monday, February 26 for the Vigil Service (Little Compline and Orthros) for St. Raphael of Brooklyn. Following the service, His Grace, Bishop TIKHON, the Rector of the Seminary and Deputy Abbott of the Monastery welcomed Sayidna to the Seminary and Monastery. That night, Sayidna hosted a reception with a light Lenten dinner for the Seminary Community.
On Tuesday, February 27, Sayidna met with students and was then reunited with a friend and classmate from 25 years ago in Greece. Dr. Christopher Veniamin, the Professor of Patristics at the Seminary, had not seen Sayidna since they finished their studies in Greece. Later in the day, Sayidna attended Little Compline in the Monastery Church before hosting the 11 Antiochian Students and their wives for dinner. During the dinner Sayidna thanked them for making the sacrifice to enter seminary, and listened to the students and answered questions.
On Wednesday, February 28, Sayidna attended the Presanctified Divine Liturgy at the Monastery Church followed by lunch with Dr. Veniamin and Dr. Harry Boosalis, the Professor of Dogmatic Theology at the Seminary. That evening, at the residence of His Beatitude, Sayidna was received for a short visit before they had dinner together at a local restaurant.
On Thursday, March 1, Sayidna taught a 3 hour course in Pastoral Theology focusing on the relationship between the Bishop and the Priest and the relationship between the Priest and the Parish. In addition to the students in the class, many other students and professors came to listen and learn from His Grace's words of wisdom. After the class, His Beatitude presented an Engolpion (panagia) to Sayidna as a token of appreciation for his visit and invited him to visit again. Sayidna then met with His Grace, Bishop TIKHON and then had lunch with the Monastic Brotherhood in the Monastery Refectory. Sayidna ended his visit with a powerful address to the Seminary Community in the evening in which he spoke about the challenges that seminarians face especially during Great Lent. At the end of the address, His Grace, Bishop TIKHON thanked Sayidna for his visit and presented Sayidna with some icons for his Chapel so that he may always remember his visit.