Mid-Feast of Pentecost
The Mid-Feast of Pentecost is celebrated midway between Pascha and Pentecost. The joy in the risen Lord is connected in this feast with the expectation of the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the apostles.
The church services and the troparion of the Mid-Feast of Pentecost solemnly proclaim that the water of immortality is given by Christ to everyone who believes in Him, and we, “with one heart and one mouth” cry out to God, “At the midway between the feasts, satisfy my thirsty soul with the water of piety.” The Holy Church speaks about the yearning of our souls. As much as the body needs food, drink and air, the soul needs the grace of God just as much or even incomparably more, as it replaces all the elements of life.
Water symbolizes eternal life. The Lord Himself says in the Gospel that whoever believes in Him, “out of his heart will flow rivers of living water” (John 7:38). There is no coincidence that during the consecration of water, we pray, “May this water deliver us unto eternal life” where the eternal life itself is the immortal spring: “Take the body of Christ, taste the fountain of immortality.”
On the eve of the feast, Great Vespers with the Small Entrance and the readings of the Old Testament paremias was celebrated in the Trinity Cathedral of the Seraphim-Diveyevo monastery.
On this feast day, in remembrance of the grace of the Holy Spirit likened by the Savior to water, the Church performs the Lesser Consecration of water.
Following the late-morning Divine Liturgy in the Seraphim-Diveyevo monastery, the procession with the cross went to the Spring of Venerable Alexandra of Diveyevo, where the monastery’s Rev.Fr. Vasily Nazarov blessed the water. Later on, according to tradition, the clergy, the sisters, the parishioners and the pilgrims walked in the procession around the historic part of the monastery. “This is not exactly a monastery, but a region that stretches for as much as three versts,” that’s how Bishop Ioanniky (Rudnev) of Nizhny Novgorod described the monastery in the early twentieth century. Once a year, the procession circumvents this so-called “region.” The solemn procession with a lantern, the icons, the crosses, and church banners continues for about an hour. On the way around the monastery, the priests sprinkle with holy water the buildings, land and people.