June 28, 2011
Howell, NJ: Metropolitan Hilarion led a regular session of the
On Wednesday, June 22, a regular session of the Diocesan Council was
held in Howell, NJ, under the chairmanship of His Eminence Hilarion,
Metropolitan of Eastern America & New York.
The following Council members took part in the meeting:
His Grace Jerome, Bishop of Manhattan
Archpriest Victor Potapov
Archpriest Serge Lukianov, Diocesan Secretary
Priest Jonah Campbell, Diocesan Treasurer
Serge R. Lopoukhine
George G. Temidis
meeting began with the singing of the prayer "O Heavenly King,"
after which Council members sang "Memory Eternal" to the newly
departed Archpriest Philip Petrovsky, and began their work.
In his introductory remarks, His Eminence, Metropolitan Hilarion,
listed the main points on the agenda and delivered a report on the
state of affairs in the diocese. His Eminence reported that the
diocese is growing and prospering with new parishes and clergymen.
Vladyka expressed his gratitude for the
excellent work of the diocesan administration in handling the day to
day operations of the diocese.
The Metropolitan informed the Council about recent
ordinations and assignments:
- Archpriest Alexander Davydov has been accepted into the Eastern
American Diocese and assigned rector of Holy Trinity Church in
- Priest Kevin Kalish has been relieved of his assignment as cleric
of St. John of Kronstadt Church in Utica, NY, and assigned rector of
Holy New Martyrs & Confessors of Russia Church in Norwich, CT.
- Priest Alexander Kazak has been accepted into the Eastern American
Diocese and assigned to St. Nicholas Church in Palm Coast, FL.
- Hieromonk Varlaam (Kuzin) has been accepted into the Eastern
American Diocese and assigned rector of the Church of Our Lady of
Vladimir in Costa Rica.
- Priest Stephanos Shagoury has been accepted into the Eastern
American Diocese and assigned temporary rector of St. Nicholas
Church in Endicott, NY.
- Hierodeacon Anatoly (Zilin; cleric of Holy Trinity Monastery) has
been ordained a hieromonk.
- Deacon Matthew Smith (cleric of Holy Virgin Protection Chapel in
Chattanooga, TN) has been ordained to the priesthood. Fr. Matthew
will continue in his previous assignment.
- Subdeacon Alexis Maddox has been ordained to the diaconate and
assigned to the Monastery of the Glorious Ascension in Resaca, GA.
- Subdeacon Christopher Johnson has been ordained to the diaconate
and assigned to Holy Apostles Church in Beltsville, MD.
- Subdeacon John Malcom has been ordained to the diaconate and then
the holy priesthood. Fr. John will serve as a U.S. Army chaplain in
the Niagara Falls, NY area.
- Deacon Damian Dantine has been relieved of his assignment as
cleric of Holy Apostles Church in Beltsville, MD and assigned cleric
of St. John the Baptist Cathedral in Washington, DC.
- In connection with the repose of Archpriest Philip Petrovsky,
Priest Serge Ledkovsky (deputy rector of St. Vladimir Memorial
Church in Jackson, NJ) has been assigned administrator of the
English Mission in the lower church of St. Vladimir Memorial Church
- The Entrance of the Theotokos Convent in Washington DC, headed by
the rectress, Abbess Aemiliane, received a canonical release from
His Beatitude Metropolitan Jonah and has been received into the
Eastern American Diocese from the Orthodox Church in America.
The Metropolitan also informed the Council about recent
awards bestowed upon clerics in the diocese:
- Archpriest Theodore Shevzov was awarded the jeweled cross on June
- Archpriest Michael Taratuchin was awarded the palitsa on June 13.
- Priest Peter Jackson was awarded the gold cross on June 19.
- Priests Constantine Semyanko and Thomas Reske were awarded the
kamilavka on March 24.
- Priest Dmitri Don was awarded the purple skufia on April 3.
- Deacons Thomas Branch, Vladimir Oliynyk and Ivan Voloshchuk were
awarded the double orarion.
The First Hierarch also informed the council that Holy Trinity
Seminary is sending two seminarians to the Dominican Republic to
help train current and future clergy. The Fund for Assistance will
also sponsor seven seminarians from Haiti to attend seminary in
Metropolitan Hilarion also informed the Council, that at the last
meeting of the ROCOR Sobor of Bishops, the Sobor resolved that one
outcome of our unification with the Moscow Patriarchate was the
normalization of relations with other Orthodox Churches. ROCOR, as
an inseparable part of the Russian Orthodox Church, is in
Eucharistic communion with all of the remaining canonical Local
Orthodox Churches. An
encyclical will be published on the diocesan website and sent to
all clergy informing them of this decision.
The Council resolved to hold two pastoral conferences in the fall
and winter of 2011. The fall conference will be held at Holy Trinity
Monastery in Jordanville, NY, October 17-19. The winter conference
will be held at St. Vladimir Church in Miami, FL, December 6-8.
Clergy and their spouses can choose to participate in either or both
of the conferences. More information will be made available on the
The Council heard a report by Archpriest John Moses on the work of
the diocesan Pastoral Resources Program (PRP). Fr. John recommended
inviting Archimandrite Meletios (Webber; abbot of St. John the
Wonderworker Monastery in Manton, CA – OCA) and Deacon Christophe
Lepoutre to deliver a report on the topic of pastoral counseling and
Orthodox psychotherapy, and how to treat the illness of
codependency. The Council adopted Fr. John’s recommendation and
resolved to invite Archimandrite Meletios and Deacon Christophe to
the winter pastoral conference in Miami.
Diocesan secretary Archpriest Serge Lukianov spoke about the work of
the diocesan media office and presented Council members written
reports on the status of the diocesan website and other projects.
The Diocesan Council also hearted a financial report prepared by
diocesan treasurer Priest Jonah Campbell. Currently, 89% of parishes
are making regular payments toward their diocesan dues, but some
parishes are still unresponsive. Metropolitan Hilarion suggested
that a final letter be sent to those parishes that do not pay
in the event of no response, the diocesan auditing committing is to
audit the parish books.
Fr. Jonah also presented a report from the auditing committee, as
well as the results of the recent successful audit. Due to the
strenuous requirements of his secular job, Priest Constantine
Semyanko was relieved of his position as chairman of the auditing
committee. The Council sincerely thanked Fr. Constantine for his
dedicated service. With the blessing of Metropolitan Hilarion, Mr.
Joseph Kollar was assigned as chairman, and Deacon Nathan Mousselli
(cleric of St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral in Lakewood, NJ) was
assigned as the third member of the auditing committee until the
next General Diocesan Meeting.
The Council also discussed a series of pending issues concerning
diocesan life and administration. The next meeting of the Council is
scheduled for September of this year.
Republication of materials must include a reference to:
"Eastern American Diocese www.eadiocese.org."
Office of the Eastern American Diocese