To Depart in Peace

My prayer for all today is that wherever you go you may arrive and depart in peace, your eyes “having seen the Savior.” I offer this short video as a prayer. The music if the Nunc Dimittis from Rachmaninov’s Vespers.

About Fr. Stephen Freeman

Fr. Stephen is a retired Archpriest of the Orthodox Church in America, Pastor Emeritus of St. Anne Orthodox Church in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. He is also author of Everywhere Present: Christianity in a One-Storey Universe, and Face to Face: Knowing God Beyond Our Shame, as well as the Glory to God podcast series on Ancient Faith Radio.



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7 responses to “To Depart in Peace”

  1. Meg Avatar

    Strange though it may sound, Rachmaninov’s Vespers is one of the things that brought me into Orthodoxy. Thanks for this!

  2. Jack Avatar

    This is my favorite one!

  3. David_Bryan Avatar

    That iconistas. . .if the icon is, indeed, a proof of God, then I pray for heaven.

    Thank you, Father.

  4. Rdr Joseph Avatar

    Yes, Rachmaninov’s Vespers (All-Night Vigil), was important to me in my conversion to Orthodoxy, as well as the music of Arvo Part. It was so moving to me to hear beautiful music that really spoke of the transcendance of God.

  5. Meg Lark Avatar
    Meg Lark

    OK, I have to wonder if Rachmaninov made it into heaven solely on the basis of this music, considering how many of us came to Orthodoxy through it! I understand that he wasn’t especially religious in his lifetime, though of course he was a faithful Orthodox Christian — just not on the order of, say, St. John of Kronstadt. 😉 But this music — well, I wouldn’t be surprised to find its composer among the company of the saints, just on the strength of this music.

  6. fatherstephen Avatar


    As a resident Tennesseean (Knoxville area), I am aware of the little known fact that Knoxville was the last place the great composer performed.

    Listening to his music, I think it is hard not to hear the heart as well. His years were difficult years for Churchmen. May His memory be eternal. I know that annual pannikhidas are offered at his grave.

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