This is an original and unique icon from Saint Nicholas Antiochian Orthodox Cathedral. It depicts Saint Raphael of Brooklyn, the founding cleric of the Cathedral community in 1895, and Saint Tikhon of Moscow, who actually consecrated the old Saint Nicholas Cathedral on Pacific Street in Brooklyn in 1902, while Saint Raphael was a priest at the time. Together they are depicted holding the old Saint Nicholas Cathedral in their hands. Above them is the Cathedral patron, Saint Nicholas, holding the new Cathedral where the community would later move in 1920 and remain until the present day.
Saint Tikhon was the first Patriarch of Moscow after the patriarchate was restored in 1917. But before this, he served as Bishop of the Aleuts and North America, and became an American citizen. He worked tirelessly to establish new churches in America, and promoted the use of English in the services. He also founded the first Orthodox seminary in America. He later returned to Russia and became Patriarch of Moscow. During the Russian Revolution he spoke boldly against the persecution of the Russian Church. In 1924 he became ill and died, and is considered a martyr or confessor of the faith. He is commemorated on April 7 (March 25 OS).
Saint Raphael was born in Beirut in 1860. He spent the first decades of his life traveling throughout the Middle East and Russia, gaining knowledge and experience as a clergyman. Father Raphael was called to America and established a parish in Brooklyn, serving Orthodox immigrants and encouraging their faith. He was later elevated to the episcopacy, becoming the first bishop consecrated in America. He continued his tireless work among the Orthodox faithful, along with evangelism efforts, until his repose in 1915. He is commemorated on February 27 and the first Saturday in November.
Icon courtesy of Saint Nicholas Antiochian Orthodox Cathedral in Brooklyn. A portion of the sale of this icon is given to the Cathedral to support their ministry.
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