Upon reaching its resting place the cross is re-assembled.
All of the 60 youth participants took turns in carrying the various sections of the cross. The center beam alone took 16 young people at one time to carry. The entire cross weighed in excess of 500 pounds.
Following the Moleben, the participants venerated the Cross.
After attaching ropes to the cross and placing the base into the hole, the youth prepare to lift the cross into place.
Upon their return to camp, several young ladies joined Fr. Andrew Fetchina in weaving flower garlands which were used to decorate the Camp Church for the Festal Celebration of the Transfiguration of Our Lord, God and Savior Jesus Christ.
Group Photo of Youth Pilgrimage 2007 Participants
The youth enjoyed a lighter moment as they struggled to ascend one of many inclines.
Metropolitan Nicholas reads the prayer for the blessing of the cross.
The pilgrims stand in front of the newly planted cross.
The youth steady the cross as dirt is shoveled in place.
Fathers Sam Sherry and Michael Chendorain guide the main cross beam over a narrow bridge.
In the late afternoon, after chanting the Troparion, Kontakion and Magnification in honor of St. Anna, the faithful took leave of the icon of St. Anna.
"This cross is blessed and Sanctified, by the Grace of the Holy Spirit, through the sprinkling of this Holy Water..."
The hour long, arduous procession to the site of the newly created cross shrine begins.
Fr. Michael Ellis and his Father Charles built the seven foot tall cross constructed of white oak that the youth were to plant at a wooded clearing at the top of the Beatitudes Trail.
Fr. Athanasy delivered the homily during Liturgy about the intercessions of St. Anna the Mother of the Theotokos.
After expressing gratitude for the kind hospitality of His Eminence, Metropolitan Nicholas, and for the pius devotion of the faithful to St. Anna, Fr. Athanasy blessed the four corners of the camp with the wonderworking icon, before beginning his journey back to Philadelphia.
Saturday began with the celebration of Divine Liturgy. Fr. Andrew Fetchina, the director of the Diocesan Apostolate for Youth was the main celebrant. The youth sang the plain chant responses to the Liturgy with great beauty.
"Your Cross We Adore... " This beautiful hymn was sung during the Moleben to the Holy Cross which was served immediately following the planting of the Cross.
Through hills and valleys and over bridges and streams, the youth walked and prayed the Jesus Prayer.
The connecting bolts are fastened.
The Cross is lifted into place.