Akathist to the Kursk Root icon

Monks from the Holy Cross Monastery (ROCOR)   in Setauket, New York  with guest chanters,  pose with the original Kursk Root Icon

It was a blessing to join the monks of Holy Cross Monastery singing the Akathist to the Holy Theotokos and venerating the Kursk Root icon as it visited local parishes in the New York area.  Here Fr. Maximos, rector of the monastery holds the famed 900 year old miraculous icon of the ‘Kursk Root’.   Visiting choir members of other parishes were welcomed to participate in the Akathist service which drew hundreds of faithful to the monastery to venerate the aged icon.  Robert Sirico, Choir Director of the St. John the Theologian Liturgical Choir  (right, front row) was among those invited to sing the sacred service.   

ORIENT: Sacred Song and Image, St. Vladimir’s Seminary Chorale Sings in Concert

Dear Friends of the OCMP,

I am honored to support in prayer and action the St. Vladimir Seminary Chorale conducted by Mat’ Robin Freeman. I am encouraging you to attend this concert and to be enriched by the sacred music and images on this program. I am also excited to have a portion of my Paraklesis service music (Ode 9) included in the evenings musical showcase! 

 I encourage you to donate generously to the music program at St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Seminary. Follow the link above to purchase your tickets and to offer a supplementary gift in thanksgiving for the talent of these fine musicians. Please help them continue to develop the music department of the seminary as they sing the praises to Our Lord Jesus Christ, and introduce many to the ancient mysteries of Orthodox Christianity. 

Yours in Christ,
Robert Sirico
Founder, Orthodox Christian Music Project


Newly Formed St. Vladimir’s Seminary Chorale Sings Newly Composed Music by Robert Sirico

The newly formed chorale with Fr. Benedict Churchill (center), who presided at the service. The chorale was conducted by Mat. Robin Freeman (left of Fr. Benedict) and composed by Robert Sirico (right of Fr. Benedict).

This past Saturday, the St. Vladimir’s Seminary community marked two “firsts” in Three Hierarchs Chapel on its campus. One was the singing of my new musical composition, and the other was the premiere of their newly formed musical ensemble. The new composition was a musical setting in Znamenny chant of the “Small Canon to the Mother of God,” also known as the Paraclesis to the Theotokos; and the new ensemble was “St. Vladimir’s Seminary Chorale”.  

I had the privilege of being at the Master Class and choir rehearsal led by Matushka Robin Freeman on the previous night before the Paraclesis was offered. I was moved to my core by the amazing talent of the St. Vladimir’s Seminary Chorale. Heavenly beauty projected through their angelic voices, and I couldn’t even imagine how beautiful the actual service would be the next day. When I heard the music in its proper liturgical context, I felt like the psalmist who said, ‘Let my prayer arise in Thy sight as incense’. What an extraordinary experience it was to hear my music, for which I labored nearly a full year to complete, Matushka Robin Freeman conducts the St. Vladimir’s Seminary Chorale offered in the full glory of the Paraclesis service! I left deeply edified, and I pray that others were similarly moved. This music is my gift of love to the Theotokos and to her Son’s holy Church.