His Grace, the Right Reverend Nikolai, Bishop of Sitka and Alaska, will be officially installed as the ruling bishop of the Russian Orthodox Diocese of Sitka and Alaska on March 4 and 5 at St. Michael the Archangel Russian Orthodox Cathedral in Sitka.
His Beatitude, the Most Blessed Theodosius, Archbishop of Washington and Metropolitan of all America and Canada, Primate of the Orthodox Church in America with His Eminence, Herman, Archbishop of Philadelphia and Eastern Pennsylvania, His Grace, Seraphim, Bishop of Ottawa and Canada, and His Grace, Tikhon, Bishop of San Francisco and the West will preside at the installation.
Protoresbyter Robert Kondratick, Chancellor of the Orthodox Church in America and Archpriest David Braum, Secretary to the Metropolitan, will also travel from New York to attend. Orthodox Clergy from the Lower 48, Canada and throughout Alaska, as well as religious leaders of other faiths to include Archbishop Roger Schwietz of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Anchorage, Bishop Mark MacDonald of the Episcopal Diocese of Alaska and Jay Olson from Juneau, Presbyter of the Presbyterian Church in Southeast Alaska, will also be present at the installation.
This is the first time in the history of the Orthodox Church in Alaska that a bishop was nominated by the people. Bishop Nikolai was nominated on Oct. 30, 2001 at the Diocesan Assembly in Anchorage to become "Ruling Bishop" of the Diocese. He was then elected by the Holy Synod of Bishops on Nov. 15, 2001 in New York.
A prayer service will be held at 11 a.m., Monday, March 4 at the Annunciation Chapel in the historical "Bishop's House" in Sitka. In the evening, a service called "The Akathist to Our Lady of Sitka" will be held at 6 p.m. at St. Michael's Cathedral in Sitka, followed by a "Bishop's Tea" where refreshments will be served.
At 9 a.m. on Tuesday, March 5, Divine Liturgy with the installation of Bishop Nikolai will be celebrated. The banquet will be held at 1 p.m. at Harrigan Centennial Hall in Sitka. Banquet reservations should be made by Feb. 25. A Commemorative Book will be published following the installation, and the deadline to place ads is March 15.
The public is welcome to attend the festivities and can call (907) 747-3560, fax (907) 747-3707 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for information, to make banquet reservations or to place an ad in the book.