After the Vigil, which was sung truly beautifully by three choirs (two special visiting choirs and one of the local choirs), we joined Bishop Theodore and several of the senior clerics from Uglich for dinner as we traveled on a boat on the Volga. Clearly something (probably several things) got crossed off the bucket list today. Below please find pictures I took from the boat on which we dined, as well as a few videos I took at the table of one of the visiting choirs singing during dinner.
I would like to say here that the clergy of Uglich were incredibly welcoming to us. Many of the fathers knew Fr. Sergei Kiselev (we are here with the choir from his school in Sviblovo), since his son Gleb was living in one of the monasteries here before he tragically and suddenly passed away. We have asked the prayers of everyone in our parish for Gleb in the past and I would like to do so again here now - please remember him in your prayers at home and in church.
I can say that the beginning of this visit was very spiritually invigorating. And I am looking forward to tomorrow's festivities. Now I am off to read the prayers before Holy Communion in preparation for serving the patronal feast of this city. But before I close I would like to say that internet connectivity here has not been as good as I hoped it might be. I don't mean in Uglich - I mean in Russia. Who knows why. It does not matter. Except - if you are not hearing back from me in a timely manner this is likely because I am having trouble receiving emails. Much more so than I thought I would. And even when I can receive emails I cannot access the Internet. This is not a complaint. But I want you to know that I am not ignoring you. :)