Delegation of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church makes pilgrimage to the sites of life and ministry of St Nicholas, Archbishop of Myra in Lycia
On December 17-20, 2011, the delegation of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church visited the sites of life and ministry of St Nicholas the Wonderworker, Archbishop of Myra in Lycia, in Turkey. The delegation, led by Metropolitan Onufry of Chernovtsy and Bukovina, included Bishop Jonah of Obukhov, a vicar of the Kiev metropolia, clergy and laymen.
On 17 December the pilgrims met with His Holiness Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople at his working residence in Istanbul. The Primate of the Orthodox Church of Constantinople said that he is praying for the recovery of His Beatitude Metropolitan Vladimir of Kiev and All Ukraine and wished the prayerful intersession of St Nicholas the Wonderworker to the God-loving Ukrainian people. His Holiness Patriarch Bartholomewe gave his blessing to the Ukrainian clergymen to celebrate the Divine Liturgy at the ancient church, in which St Nicholas served as a bishop and was buried. His incorruptible relics were transferred to Bari in Italy in 1087.
On 19 December Metropolitan Onufry celebrated the Divine Liturgy at the church in the ancient Lycian town of Myra (now Demre). Concelebrating were Bishop Jonah, clergymen from Ukraine, Russia and Georgia. Special prayers were lifted up for the health of His Beatitude Metropolitan Vladimir, the Primate of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church.
That same day the delegation visited the site of the ancient town of Patara, where St Nicholas the Wonderworker was born. The pilgrims said a thanksgiving prayer and read Akathistos hymn.
On 20 December the delegation returned to Ukraine, website of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church reports.