In 2014, we welcomed clergy from Sydney, Brisbane, Alabama and Washington D.C., received a shipment of processional items, hosted Bp George and the clergy of our Deanery, prayed for those fallen in battle, and endured a hailstorm. Major events this year were in the ordination to the priesthood of Fr Andrew to serve our parish, and our 40th Anniversary Dinner.
January 2014: We started the year off with a parish clean-up on 4/Jan. Given the exceptionally hot day – even by Brisbane standards – it was a testament to commitment by all those who laboured to make our parish beautiful to celebrate the Birth of Christ. Thanks to all those who made this happen!
From 4-7 January, we celebrated Christmas services day and night. 4-5 January celebrated the Sunday before Christmas, then 5-6 January celebrated the Eve of the Birth of Christ. Special thanks to Fr Andrew Morgan, deacon at Protection of the Holy Virgin Church in Cabramatta, Sydney, and Matushka Kathy for visiting our parish. Fr Andrew was also able to serve as both reader and rubricist for the Royal Hours and Vesperal Divine Liturgy on Christmas Eve, for which we were most grateful.
On 6-7 January, we celebrated services for the Birth of Christ. Many people came to these services, with a large number of communicants. Christ is Born! Glorify Him!
April 2014: Parish Feastday, Presanctified Liturgy and Holy Week
Two days later, we celebrated our parish feastday. Many people came to our parish for the feast of the Annunciation, which was wonderful to see – being that it was a weekday, and also that it was a much lower-key event than in previous years (to emphasis the anniversary celebrations happening in May).
And two days after that, we served the first Presanctified Liturgy in our parish in decades. Many thanks to Fr Gabriel Makarov, who assisted in the rubrics of the service, and the Russian Orthodox Male Choir of Brisbane, who sang at the service.
Two days later (again!), we served the Matins of Lazarus Saturday – effectively starting Holy Week – and the services of Lazarus Saturday and Palm Sunday. With the help of friends of the parish, we were able (for the first time in memory) to distribute Palm Crosses this year. Many thanks to those who helped to make it happen!
We then celebrated, from Wednesday evening, the services of Holy Week – commemorating the Last Supper, the Crucifixion of our Lord, the Entombment of our Lord, and the great and joyful Resurrection of our Lord at the midnight service. It was a blessing to share the joy of the feast with so many!
On the evening of that Sunday, we celebrated the Paschal Matins at St Seraphim’s church – an annual tradition where all clergy of the Deanery serve together, and all people are invited, to share the joy of the feast together.
May 2014: Anniversaries and Ordinations
On Saturday 17 and Sunday 18 of May 2014, the Holy Annunciation Parish in Brisbane (Australia’s first dedicated English-language parish) celebrated the 40th Anniversary of its establishment, 30 years of regular English services and 5 years since joining ROCOR.
On the Sunday morning, with love and joy, the parish Rector, Priest Alexander Borodin, Deacon Andrew Smith, visiting clergy from many Brisbane parishes (Russian and Greek) and members of the parish and many visitors welcomed their First Hierarch Metropolitan Hilarion to the parish to begin the Hierarchal Liturgy.
During the Small Entrance, Metropolitan Hilarion awarded Fr Alexander Borodin the right to wear the kamilavka (an ecclesiastical award worn on the head). Deacon Vasiliy Konstantinidis was awarded the double-orarion.
After the Great Entrance Deacon Andrew Smith was ordained the priesthood to serve as assistant priest at Holy Annunciation parish.
At the end of the Liturgy, the clergy and parishioners were all invited to a festive meal at St Seraphim’s parish hall where Fr Alexander gave a speech in honour of the anniversary of the parish and giving a short history of the parish in précis form.
The parishioners of Holy Annunciation parish wish to express their gratitude to all those who prayed with them on their important day, and especially those who assisted in any way to make it possible.
Written by Priest Alexander Borodin
That night, Matins was served by Fr Andrew and Dcn Alexander Paramonov, guided by Fr Kyril (Holy Ascension Mission, Melbourne). The next day, Fr Andrew celebrated the Liturgy for the first time, again guided by Fr Kyril. Many thanks to all those who attended!
- Photo Album of Hierarchal Vigil
- Photo Album of Hierarchal Liturgy with Ordinations
- The speech delivered by Fr Alexander Borodin has been posted on our Diocesan website.
- Photo Album of Fr Andrew and Dcn Alexander Paramonov serving for the first time
On Saturday of that week, on the feast of Sts Cyril and Methodius, Dcn Alexander Paramonov was ordained to the priesthood by Metropolitan Hilarion at St Seraphim’s Church. He has been assigned to St Nicholas Cathedral, in preparation for his eventual transfer to the Gold Coast parish. Axios!
- Photos (Unification newspaper – Google Translate available of article).
On 15 June, we were blessed to have Fr Anastasios Bozikis (assistant priest at St George Greek Orthodox Church, Brisbane) concelebrate with us.
In July, we received a shipment of liturgical items – a set two liturgical fans (‘ripidia’) and a processional cross, which we have placed behind the altar. This is a part of our commitment to glorifying God and beautifying His temple. These are scheduled to be blessed in connection with our parish’s Annual General Meeting.
We were also fortunate to have Rev. Fr Alexander Resnikoff, assistant priest at St John the Baptist Orthodox Cathedral, Washington DC, visit and serve with our Fr Alexander on the weekend of 26-27 July. Fr Alexander Resnikoff was visiting Brisbane, and we were glad to welcome him to our parish.
Two weeks after hosting one clergy visitor from America, we were able to host another! On 10 August, Rev. Dcn Ephraim Rivers, deacon at St Symeon the New Theologian Church, Alabama (in the OCA), visited our parish and served with Fr Andrew. Fr Ephraim had icons of St John of Shanghai and San Francisco, which he distributed to those present at the Liturgy. We were glad to welcome Fr Ephraim to our parish during his visit to Brisbane.
September 2014: Moleben with Bp George, AGM
On 5 September 2014, we were privileged to welcome Bp George to our parish, and to welcome him at his first parish visit to Brisbane. His Grace presided at a Moleben and Akathist service for the Leavetaking of the Dormition of the Mother of God.
We were also pleased to host many other clergy from our Queensland Deanery: Fr Gabriel Makarov, dean of St Nicholas Cathedral; Fr John Weir, assistant priest at the Vladimir Icon parish; Fr Gabriel Lapardin, rector of St Seraphim’s parish; and Fr Bill Konstantinidis, deacon at the Vladimir Icon parish.
At the conclusion of the service, Bp George gave a short homily on the benefits of praying together and of our respect for the Mother of God, and hoping to see us at other services this weekend. Our parish had already cancelled services for the weekend, encouraging all parishioners to pray where Bp George would be – St Seraphim’s the next evening for a youth discussion and Vigil, St Nicholas Cathedral on Sunday morning for Divine Liturgy, and at the Vladimir Icon parish in Rocklea for their patronal feastday celebrations.
- Photo Album of the Moleben & Akathist at Holy Annunciation Orthodox Church.
- Photo Album of the Liturgy at St Nicholas Cathedral.
- Photo Album of the Liturgy and Procession at the Vladimir Icon Parish feastday
Thanks to all those who attended and helped to welcome Bp George to Brisbane!
On 14 September, we held our Annual General Meeting – the first held under our new parish rules of association. Reports were heard from our Rector, Warden, Secretary and Treasurer, as well as the heads of the Sisterhood, Choir and Fundraising subcommittees, and the parish council for 2014-15 was elected. Congratulation to Nicholas, who was awarded the annual Rector’s Award in thanks for his great contribution to the parish (including parish council membership since the 1980s); thank you to the parish council of 2013-14; and congratulations to the new parish council of 2014-15! Please keep the parish council (Priest Alexander, Priest Andrew, Andrew, Alexandra, Olga, Gregory, Irenaeus, Nicholas, Anne and Margarita) in your prayers.
24 October 2014: We celebrated our 40th Anniversary with a dinner at 66 On Ernest. This exceptional venue allowed for a formal yet relaxed atmosphere that marked the evening. Fr Alexander welcomed the guests, and the prayer was led by the Holy Annunciation Orthodox Church choir before meals were served. The evening was punctuated by a speech from Fr Alexander, speaking about the parish and its vision for the future, and choir recitals from the Holy Annunciation Orthodox Church choir, singing liturgical music in English. We were blessed to have significant numbers of guests from many parishes in multiple jurisdictions. A special thank you to all those who organised the dinner, and those who assisted in making the dinner a success!
November 2014: Remembrance Day Memorial, Hailstorm
On November 8, we served a Memorial service especially for Orthodox Christians who had died on the field of battle. We were able to include the names of ANZACs who were Orthodox Christians – which we were particularly grateful for as this was the anniversary of the start of World War I (1914-18). Many of those we commemorated were citizens of the Russian Empire, who were exiled from their own country during the Bolshevik Revolution, and who then enlisted in the Australian Infantry Force.
On November 19, we had our parish clean-up – done before the start of the Nativity Fast this year so that the pre-Christmas cleanup can be easier. About a dozen parishioners were able to clean the church and its surrounds, and we thank them for their help.
Sadly, on 27 November, there was a severe hailstorm in Brisbane. The results of this were damaging to our church building, as well as the other churches in central Brisbane. Several window panes were smashed, cladding of our church was dented and broken, a pipe was damaged, and a significant amount of soil in the backyard was displaced. Thanks to all those who donated hours of their time to cleaning up so that services continued that weekend as scheduled.