Brooklyn Boro

Faith In Brooklyn for Nov. 6

November 6, 2015 By Francesca Norsen Tate, Religion Editor Brooklyn Daily Eagle
St. Nicholas Antiochian Orthodox Cathedral, on State Street in Boerum Hill, is concluding the Jubilee Year of Repose for St. Raphael of Brooklyn. Eagle File Photo by Josh Ross
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Orthodox Christians Here Mark St. Raphael of Brooklyn Centennial

The “Jubilee Year” for Brooklyn’s first saint, Raphael of Brooklyn, is concluding on the centennial of his death. St. Nicholas Antiochian Cathedral, which serves the Eastern Orthodox Arab and Syrian communities in Brooklyn, has observed this centennial over the past year and will host special services as well as a lecture presentation in the upcoming week.

The feast of St. Raphael of Brooklyn is observed this year on the first Friday and Saturday of November (Nov. 6-7). It concludes the “Jubilee Year” that Patriarch JOHN X inaugurated to commemorate the 100th anniversary of St. Raphael’s repose (or “falling asleep in the Lord”) in 1915.

The services include Great Vespers and Artoklasia at 7 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 6. Orthros (Morning Prayer) begins at 9:15 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 7 and a Hierarchical Divine Liturgy begins at 10:30 a.m. on Nov. 7. His Eminence, Metropolitan JOSEPH will preside at the services on both days.

His Grace Bishop Nicholas of Brooklyn, will give a one-hour talk and presentation on the life and legacy of St. Raphael of Brooklyn. This talk, which is free and open to the public, takes place on Thursday, Nov. 12 at 7 p.m. in the Cathedral sanctuary.

Archmandrite Raphael Hawaweeny was elected as a vicar bishop to TIKHON and the spiritual head of the Syrian Mission of the Russian Orthodox Church in North America. RAPHAEL was given the title “Bishop of Brooklyn” and was head of the growing Syrian Mission here at the start of the 20th century. St. Nicholas Church of Brooklyn was designated as his cathedral.

Bishop RAPHAEL served with great dignity, adding 30 parishes to the mission during those years. He established a publication called Al Kalimat (The Word), through which he informed his readership of the truths of Orthodoxy. He died in 1915. Eighty-five years later, on May 29, 2000, he was canonized as a saint of the Holy Orthodox Church by the Orthodox Church in America. The actual canonization liturgy took place at the Cathedral Shrine to St. Raphael at St. Tikhon’s Monastery in South Canaan, Penn. This was the monastery that Bishop RAPHAEL had helped consecrate many years during his ministry.

For more information, call (718) 855-6225, or visit St. Nicholas Antiochian Cathedral is at 355 State St., near Bond Street, in Boerum Hill.

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First Prez Cabaret Celebrates Music of the American Theatre

Wine and the songs of classic American theater are some of the treats in store at the First Prez Cabaret this weekend.

The Nov. 8 event features the talents of several First Presbyterian Church members. Emcee Jane Quinn, actors Dick Turmail and Barbara Cummings, playwright Julius Landau, pianist Matt Podd and singers Harriette Mandeville, Caroline Sheehan and Terry Quinn all invite the community to attend First Prez Cabaret from 5 to 7 p.m. in the church’s elegant Elliott Room (124 Henry St.).

Music and lyrics of the Gershwins, Irving Berlin, Lerner & Loewe, Rodgers & Hammerstein, Sondheim and Bernstein will be celebrated.

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Landmark Church Holds 90th Birthday Concert for Treasured Pipe Organ

A rousing concert titled “For All the Saints” will mark the 90th birthday of the treasured Peabody Memorial Organ in St. Ann & the Holy Trinity Church. The concert, to be held on Sunday, Nov. 15 at 3 p.m., is also a fundraiser to support the continued restoration and maintenance of the organ, an E.M. Skinner, Opus #24 instrument.

The concert will feature three accomplished musicians: George Davey, organist at St. George’s Episcopal/Anglican Church in Bedford-Stuyvesant; Jason Asbury, assistant head of Saint Ann’s School, choral director; and  M. Chad Levitt, interim director of music at St. Ann & the Holy Trinity.

Their musical selections will make full use of the versatility and sounds of the instrument. The program will include works by composers including Alexandre Guilmant, Jean Langlais, Dietrich Buxtehude, Johann Sebastian Bach and David Cherwien. Noted soprano Korin Kormick will perform an aria from Richard Wagner’s “Tannhauser,” accompanied by Levitt.

The E.M. Skinner organ was a gift to the church. George Foster Peabody gave the instrument to the church in 1925, in memory of his brother Charles. This organ has a rich history, having been played by some of the most highly regarded musicians of the Episcopal Church and numerous other organists of note. With 4,718 pipes ranging from two inches to 32 feet in length, it is the largest, essentially unchanged Skinner organ in New York City.

In 1999, the Organ Historical Society deemed it “An Historic Instrument of Special Merit,” the musical equivalent of landmark status.

Although the organ had fallen into disrepair over time, a successful restoration effort during the 1990s and fundraisers to date have made it possible to address many longstanding problems. However, much still remains to be done to restore the organ to its full playable and original condition.

The suggested donation is $25 at the door, or contact [email protected] for reservations. The church is at the corner of Clinton and Montague streets in Brooklyn Heights. More information and full specifications for the Peabody Memorial Organ are available at

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Catholic Charities Sponsors Bereavement Conference

Catholic Charities of Brooklyn and Queens is once again offering its annual Bereavement Conference, hosted this time at St. Francis College in Brooklyn Heights.

The program, titled “Journey to Healing Bereavement Conference,” includes “End-of-Life Conversations and the Catholic Perspective: A Panel Discussion,” with The Conversation Project, ( A member of The Conversation Project will encourage participants to speak to loved ones about values, desires and outcomes before they end up in the ICU at the hospital. Also on the panel will be Rev. Nicanor Austriaco, O.P., associate professor, Providence College; Calvary Hospice and a music ministry with the Threshold Choir.

Participants will receive a Conversation Starter Kit that can help prepare for decisions on health care proxy, end-of-life wishes and other issues.

Many audience members are from local parishes throughout the Diocese of Brooklyn and Queens. This conference is free, but registration is required. Call 718-722-6214, email [email protected], or register online at

“Journey to Healing” runs from 1 to 3:30 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 7. Registration is still open, according to a spokesperson for Catholic Charities-Brooklyn and Queens. St. Francis College is at 180 Remsen St., between Clinton and Court streets. 


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