The Holy Resurrection Serbian Orthodox Church of Steubenville marked their 113th Slava on Sunday September 29th.
The Church also celebrated the 76th anniversary of their choir, Petar Krstich. They welcomed the choir of St. Nicholas Serbian Orthodox Church of Steelton with their priest Fr. Christopher Rocknage and his family, who sang and served for the Slava day celebration. On the eve of the slava day, the two choirs were joined by the choir from St. Sava Serbian Orthodox Church of McKeesport directed by Fr. Stevan Rocknage for a concert in honor of the choir anniversary and the church’s slava.
The liturgical celebration was theologically full of meaning because of the coinciding of the slava with the afterfeast of the Exaltation of the Cross. It is only in light of the cross that we realize the true importance of the resurrection and vice versa. The ultimate message of these two feasts is that the sacrificial love never ends with defeat but with victory that brings everlasting life. Fr. Stefan Doric, the priest of the Steubenville parish, pointed out that Serbian Slava is an extension to the holy liturgy in which the one who is hosting the slava is acting as a priest towards his guests. And as Christ in his sacrificial love for us acted as the best servant to us all, the one who is hosting slava also shows his sacrificial love by offering himself as a servant at his slava. Additionally, he added that every Slava host puts out the best food and the best covers for his house when Slava is celebrated, which is exactly what happened in Steubenville. The Church in Steubenville was shining brightly dressed in its new garments which added to the solemnity and joy of the whole congregation.
This annual celebration had as its hosts, or Slava kumovi, Gary and Charlene Stanich. They are two long-standing members of the church who contributed and continue to contribute to its growth and prosperity. In his speech at the solemn lunch after the litija, Gary Stanich recalled the day when his father was the kum of slava and emphasized the importance of having a strong spiritual basis in all things, something that his father provided him with.
The Church in Steubenville continues to shine through the blessing of His Grace Bishop Irinej and very generous congregation who understood that the meaning of slava is exactly the sacrificial love for brothers and sisters in Christ and for the whole Church. It was in this love for Christ and for others that the Holy Resurrection Slava was solemnly celebrated.