Saint Nicholas Cathedral here invites all Orthodox parishes in the US to add the names, ranks, and photographs of their US military veterans to the newly established Orthodox Veterans Memorial web page, a 21st century extension of the cathedral’s continuing commitment to praying for our Orthodox fallen.
“Our chaplains serve Orthodox of all jurisdictions and, as such, our War Memorial will honor all Orthodox Christians whose names have been submitted to be honored,” wrote His Beatitude, Metropolitan Jonah, in a letter to the faithful and friends of Saint Nicholas Cathedral. “We must never forget their sacrifice and those who have, as Abraham Lincoln so eloquently stated in his Gettysburg Address, ‘given their last full measure of devotion.’”
The Orthodox Church has a longstanding tradition of dedicating churches to the memory of Orthodox Christians who have fought and died in defense of Church and country. Saint Nicholas Cathedral, modeled after the 12th century Church of Saint Dmitri in Vladimir, Russia, was built in the early 1960s as the National War Memorial Shrine. A decade-long effort to raise funds for the cathedral’s construction had been blessed by the Holy Synod of Bishops in 1949. The cathedral was dedicated in 1963 to the memory of Orthodox Christians who died fighting for freedom in the Russian Revolution, World Wars I and II, and the Korean War. A bronze dedicatory tablet hangs at the entrance of the cathedral, and a book listing the names of the fallen, collected from parishes across the nation, is kept in the altar. Each year, on the Sunday of Memorial Day weekend, these names are read aloud during the Divine Liturgy.
The cathedral’s new Veterans Memorial web page features a growing list of Orthodox veterans by jurisdiction and parish. On-line visitors can find the webpage by clicking the tab labeled “Veterans” on the navigation section of the cathedral’s website, www.stnicholasdc.org. A link from the OCA website, www.oca.org, to the webpage of the Veterans Memorial will be available shortly.
*** Jurisdiction, Name of Home Parish, Location of Home Parish (e.g., GOARCH, Hagia Sophia Cathedral, Washington, DC)
*** Full Name of Veteran, Rank, Branch of Service, Years of Service, Wartime Service, Awards for Valor, Active/Retired/Deceased/KIA/MIA. (e.g., Pappas, George J., COL, US Army, 1948-1978, Korea, Vietnam, Silver Star, Retired.)
Please address all hardcopy correspondence concerning the Veterans Memorial to Veterans Memorial Coordinator, Saint Nicholas Cathedral, 3500 Massachusetts Ave, NW, Washington, DC 20007.
Names of service members killed in action (KIA) or are missing in action (MIA) not already included on the cathedral’s listing of the fallen will be added and duly commemorated in the Divine Liturgy on the Sunday of Memorial Day weekend.