With the blessing of the Synod of Bishops of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia, the commission for organizing and holding celebrations on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the Russian Church Abroad and its salvific service to God and the Russian people who found themselves outside the Fatherland, announces an iconography competition dedicated to this significant date.
The basic concept of the icon was developed during the commission’s meetings and approved by the Synod of Bishops in June of this year. The icon of the Mother of God, “Joy of All Who Sorrow,” painted by the famous iconographer of the Russian diaspora Archimandrite Kyprian (Pyzhov) and stored in the Hall of Acts of Holy Trinity Theological Seminary in Jordanville, NY, may serve as inspiration and a starting point. It depicts the Mother of God with the Infant Christ in full height, and behind Her are numerous New Martyrs and Confessors of the Russian Church (without halos), glorified abroad in 1981.
The anniversary icon should depict the Mother of God of “the Sign” in full height, thus indicating that the Kursk-Root Icon is the most treasured relic of our Church. The great saints John, Archbishop of Shanghai and San Francisco, and Jonah, Bishop of Hankou stand before her. Behind them are rows of Russian emigrants, among which are the most famous ascetics and figures of Russian Church Abroad, who created, strengthened and supported its unique service to God and the people. At the same time, the commission emphasizes that although this concept is desirable, it is optional.
The main goal of the competition is to issue a festive icon for the anniversary celebrations which most accurately depicts the historical path of our Church, its spirit and heritage, the essence and uniqueness of its ministry, to present it to distinguished guests and to preserve the memory of this event for future generations. The members of the aforementioned commission, preserving the anonymity of the submitted works, will present them to the Synod of Bishops, which will participate in the competition as a jury.
First prize: in addition to $ 5,000, an order will be placed for four icons (about the same size) for His Holiness Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia Kirill and His Holiness Patriarch of Serbia Irenej, His Beatitude Metropolitan Onouphry of Kiev and All Ukraine and for the Synodal Cathedral of Our Lady “of the Sign” in New York, where most of the celebration will take place.
Second prize: in addition to $ 2,500, an order of three icons (about the same size) will be placed for distinguished guests and central churches of the Russian Church Abroad.
Third prize: in addition to $ 1,000, an order of three icons (about the same size) for distinguished guests and central churches of the Russian Church Abroad will be submitted.
The official list of prizewinners of the competition will be announced at a meeting of the Synod of Bishops in December, 2019.
Drafts of the icons should be sent to the following address before December 1, 2019:
Archpriest Serafim Gan, member of the anniversary commission: firstname.lastname@example.org