“…lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.” (Matthew 28:20)
Metropolitan Tikhon returned late Wednesday afternoon from his annual visit to the family’s ancestral home in the village of Les Contamines-Montjoie in south-eastern France, an hour from Geneva, nestled in the Alps.
After Divine Liturgy yesterday for the Ascension, staff and members of the Saint Sergius Chapel community met for a festal breakfast with His Beatitude and a slideshow of his trip.
This was all very pleasant, but the juxtaposition of our Lord’s departure and Metropolitan Tikhon’s return struck me also as theologically meaningful. The Lord leaves His disciples but at the same time promises that He would remain with them, that He would not abandon them as orphans. And it is precisely through the sacramental life of the church that His promise is most clearly fulfilled, with the bishop at the center, surrounded by presbyters, deacons and faithful. So, the Lord departs, but the return of the metropolitan is a living reminder that He remains with us, “even unto the end of the world.”