On Wednesday, August 2, 2023, His Eminence Kyrill Archbishop of San Francisco and Western America paid a pastoral visit to the Saint Elias Church in Diamond Springs, CA, on the parish Feast Day.
Concelebrating with His Eminence were the Father Rector, Archpriest James Steele, Archpriest Paul Volmensky (Holy Ascension Church, Sacramento, CA), Priest Philip Plowman (St. Elias Church), Priest Elijah Drake-Wu (All Saints of America Church of Lodi, California), and Deacon Steven Kennedy.
In his sermon, Archbishop Kyrill spoke of the Patron Saint of the community, the Holy Prophet of God Elias quoting from the General Epistle of Saint James: “Elias was a man subject to like passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months” (5:17) “Brethren, if any of you do err from the truth, and one convert him; let him know, that he which converteth the sinner from the error of his way shall save a soul from death, and shall hide a multitude of sins” (19-20).
At the end of the Divine Liturgy, His Eminence greeted all the members of Saint Elias Church, and Father Elijah Drake-Wu as well with his Names Day.
Then, His Eminence read a prayer for “The Beginning of Every Good Work” as the Father Rector, Archpriest James, and the parishioners begin an iconography project, which includes the expansion of the apse in the High Place of the Alar making room for icons there and a new iconostasis.