As the country carefully begins to revive from its long covid pause, the value of parish life, traditions and just being together with other Orthodox Christians, takes on a new vitality. One such time-honored tradition took place at Holy Trinity Orthodox Church in Yonkers NY on Sunday, June 13, 2021 immediately following Divine Liturgy: A Flag-Raising ceremony.
Since the parish’s beginning in 1899, an American flag is the only national flag that has flown over Holy Trinity’s property. But the current flag, weathered by harsh winters and a pesky tree branch, was now in a sorry state.
To remedy the situation properly, Holy Trinity held a Flag-Raising ceremony on the day before Flag Day. (June 14) Parishioners gathered around the flagpole while two sons of the parish and military veterans, Michael Adamovich of Putnam Valley (veteran of the US Army and current Vice-President of the Parish Council) and William Bolinsky (veteran of the US Navy and a tonsured Reader at Holy Trinity) lowered the weathered flag. Mr. Adamovich will deliver the old flag to a Veteran’s Association for an appropriate and respectful disposal.
Father Volodymyr Zablotskyy intoned “Memory Eternal” for all the departed US soldiers and veterans, especially those from Holy Trinity parish.
Then three high-ranking Scouts solemnly carried over the new flag. The Scouts were:
Olivia Reduto of Scarsdale, NY; a daughter of Holy Trinity parish and a graduating high school senior who recently attained the status of “Gold Award Scout”.
Brothers Daniel and Ivan Federov, of Croton-on-Hudson, NY: Both are Eagle Scouts. To fulfill one of the requirements for Eagle status, Daniel Federov constructed the storage closets for Holy Trinity’s new social hall. Earlier in the day, Father Vlad presented Daniel with a wooden plaque, engraved with a prayer of the Elders of Optina in gratitude for a job well done.
Finally, as the Scouts raised the new flag, all those in attendance joined in singing “The Star-Spangled Banner”. And the crisp, new flag waved in a gentle breeze!
But the day wasn’t over! Following the Flag-Raising, everyone was invited to enjoy another All-American tradition: A barbeque!
"He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver." - 2 Corinthians 9:6-7