Alaska Digest

Posted: Thursday, November 17, 2005

Sitka icon to visit ANB today

JUNEAU - The Sitka Icon of the Mother of God, one of the most revered wonder-working icons in North America, will stop in Juneau today on its way back from a two-month tour of the Lower 48.

The icon arrives in town at 1:30 p.m. and will be available for viewing at 5 p.m. at the Alaska Native Brotherhood Hall. There will be an Orthodox prayer service at 6, and a reception at 7. It will leave for Sitka later tonight. Admission is free and open to the public.

Bishop Nikolai of Sitka, Anchorage and Alaska will attend, along with Archi- mandrite Isidore, chancellor of the Russian Orthodox Diocese of Alaska.

The icon toured more than 100 churches in the Lower 48 from Sept. 7 through Nov. 7.

"Thousands of people came to venerate and pray before the icon," said Father Michael Spainhoward of the Russian Orthodox Church. "It is, of course, a great Alaska treasure. It is a wonder-working icon, meaning that there are healings and miracles that can be attributed to the intercession of the mother of God."

The Sitka icon is located at the Cathedral of St. Michael the Archangel in Sitka, where its been since 1850. It was a gift from the Russian American Co.

LeConte delayed in return to service

JUNEAU - The Alaska state ferry LeConte will be at least one day late returning to its scheduled run after its annual overhaul in Ketchikan, state officials said Wednesday.

The vessel will begin sea trials on Thursday morning but its exact time to return to service depends on the result of the trials, as well as the tides in Wrangell Narrows.

The LeConte's normal six-week overhaul was shortened to five weeks, but the state wasn't able to finish by that deadline, said Capt. John Falvey, general manager of the Alaska Marine Highway System.

As a result, Pelican has not had ferry service since early October. The Taku has been providing service to Kake and Hoonah while Alaska Catamaran's St. Aquilina has provided service to Kake, Angoon, Hoonah and Tenakee.

"Our objective is to get the LeConte back in service (Thursday) and to Pelican as soon as humanly possible," Falvey said.

The marine highway system plans to put out a revised ferry schedule on Thursday, as soon as it knows when the LeConte is ready to go back in service.

Young adults chosen for state conference

JUNEAU - Six young adults from Juneau were selected as delegates to a conference at the University of Alaska Fairbanks the commemorates the 50th anniversary of the state's constitutional convention.

The Conference of Young Alaskans to be held in January will host 55 delegates from across the state.

Those representing Juneau will be Michael Cipriano, Britt Constantine, Mara Early, Weston Eiler, Sandon Fisher and Alex Nelson. The list also includes Skye Rubadeau McRoberts and Lucas Knowles.

The delegates will discuss solutions to several problems facing the state and hear from original signers of the state constitution.

There are 30 young women and 25 young men in the selected group. Twenty of the delegates attend colleges or universities, 16 are in high school and 19 are in the work force.

"It is clear to me that many of Alaska's future political, business and civic leaders are today's delegates to the Conference of Young Alaskans," said University of Alaska president Mark Hamilton, in a written statement.

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