The Sunday of the Myrrh-Bearing Women
The second Sunday after Pascha is dedicated to the women the Myrrh-Bearers.
They were: Mary Magdalene, healed by Jesus Christ from seven mortal sins; Mary, the wife of Clopas; Salome, the wife of Zebedee the fisherman and mother of the Apostles, St. James and St. John the Theologian; Joanna, the wife of Chuza, the steward administrator of King Herod the Antipa’s household; Martha and Mary, the sisters of Lazarus, a friend of Jesus Christ whom He has raised from the dead shortly before His entry to Jerusalem. Next, there was Suzanna, left unidentified together with a host of “many other” women from Galilee who served Jesus and accompanied Him to Jerusalem on the eve of His last Passover.
The Seraphim-Diveyevo monastery served festive Liturgy at the church of the Holy Equal of the Apostles Mary Magdalene. The home church at the Hegumenia quarters was consecrated in the name of the holy Myrrh-Bearer because the monastery’s first Hegumenia, Maria (Ushakova), was tonsured under her name. Just like her heavenly patron, Mother Maria had great virtue to wholly and fully depend on the will of God and was wholeheartedly devoted to the Lord Jesus Christ.
The monastery flourished during her years as an abbess (1862-1904). The number of nuns reached one thousand and the monastery built its Trinity Cathedral, the bell-tower, Hegumenia’s quarters, as well as the Refectory church after the Holy Righteous Prince Alexander Nevsky and thirty other kinds of facilities.
On May 12, festive services were held at all of the monastery churches.
After late-hour Divine Liturgy, a procession with the cross, customary for Sundays before the Leavetaking of Pascha, went along the Holy Kanavka accompanied with the singing of the Paschal Troparion.