On September 11, the feast of the Beheading of St. John the Baptist, as part of the church-wide Day of Sobriety, with the blessing of the Interim Administrator of the Patriarchal Parishes in the USA and Canada, Bishop Matthew of Sourozh, cleric of St. Nicholas Cathedral in New York, Abbot Nicodemus (Balyasnikov), visited the House of Mercy dedicated to St. John of Kronstadt in Brooklyn.
In the house church at this social charitable institution, a prayer service was held for those suffering from the disease of alcoholism and drug addiction, attended by the residents, administration, and volunteers of the charitable foundation St. John Give Hope. As a blessing for the good intention of acquiring a sober lifestyle, icons of St. John of Shanghai, consecrated at his holy relics in San Francisco were presented.
Interaction continued over a fraternal meal, in which the patrons of the House of Diligence, the owners of the Brooklyn PEP Bakehouse and Coffee Shop, took part. Participants in the conversation shared their experiences of recovery and catechesis, as well as returning to a full social life thanks to the activities of volunteers at the House of Mercy.
House of Mercy in honor of St. John of Kronstadt in Brooklyn was created on the initiative and work of the founder and director of the St. John Give Hope Foundation Vadim Arefiev. In this social institution, compatriots who find themselves in difficult life situations in America undergo rehabilitation and socialization. In addition to professional help in overcoming alcohol or drug addiction, residents of the House, designed for 12 people at a time, have the opportunity to find work and firmly adapt to a new sober life.
The House of Mercy was opened in 2017 under the patronage of the Patriarchal parishes of the Moscow Patriarchate in the USA, whose clergy provide care for the leadership and volunteers of the St. John Give Hope Foundation, and also provide pastoral care for the residents of the House of Mercy, including performing divine services in a small house church erected in 2018.