|Saint Tikhon’s Monastery: Memorial Day Weekend Pilgrimage - 05/17/13|
Clergy and faithful of our diocese are warmly invited to join hundreds of their brothers and sisters in Christ in the 109th Annual Memorial Day Weekend Pilgrimage at Saint Tikhon’s Monastery in South Canaan PA. Events and liturgical celebrations will begin on May 24th and continue through May 27th. The complete schedule of events is available HERE! You may also visit the monastery website for details: http://sttikhonsmonastery.org/
|Whitestone NY: Saint Thomas Sunday - 05/13/13|
On “Saint Thomas Sunday,” 12 May, Bishop Michael visited Saint Nicholas Church in Whitestone NY. His Grace illustrated his sermon and punctuated important points on the true meaning of Pascha ~ the Risen Christ ~ by walking among those present and distributing eggs to the delighted children. He then joined the community after liturgy for a joyous and bountiful Saint Thomas Sunday Feast.
|Regional Parish Council Conferences in June 2013 - 05/13/13|
Bishop Michael fervently reminds all Parish Rectors and Parish Council Members of his expectation that they attend one of the three regional "Parish Growth & Evangelization" Parish Council Conferences scheduled during the month of June. All parishioners interested in growing their parishes and spreading the Gospel should be encouraged to attend as well! The Conference leader, Very Reverend Father Constantine Nasr, oversaw the growth of a modestly sized parish in Oklahoma City OK to a truly thriving community of over 1,000 souls during his three decades of pastoral ministry. Parish leaders from across our diocese agree that bringing new life into our churches is an urgent priority. Father Constantine will share his years of expertise and highly practical methods for making our faith contagious and our churches inviting ~ to new visitors and to those who have fallen out of regular participation in parish life. See "Upcoming Events" on this webpage for dates and details!
information & details >
|Staten Island NY: Bright Monday Liturgy - 05/11/13|
Bishop Michael celebrated the Divine Liturgy on the morning of Bright Monday (6 May) at Saints Cosmas and Damian Adult Home, Staten Island NY.
|Bishop Michael: 3rd Anniversary of Episcopal Consecration & Enthronement - 05/10/13|
His Grace, Bishop Michael was consecrated to the Episcopacy on May 8th, 2010 and the following day (May 9th) he was enthroned as “Bishop of New York and the Diocese of New York and New Jersey.” Since that time, our diocese has seen new life and vitality as our beloved bishop leads by an example of sacrificial service, pastoral care, loving compassion, ceaseless visitation, fervent prayer, and seemingly boundless energy. We have been abundantly blessed by God, witnessing an overflowing of enthusiasm and labors as the “good fruits” of the Lord’s vineyard in New York & New Jersey are planted and harvested. May God grant our beloved Archpastor MANY BLESSED YEARS!
|PASCHA: The Resurrection of our Lord, God and Savior, Jesus Christ - 05/05/13|
This is the day of resurrection! Let us be illumined by the feast! Let us embrace each other! Let us call “brothers” even those that hate us, and forgive all by the resurrection, and so let us cry: “Christ is risen from the dead, trampling down death by death, and upon those in the tombs bestowing life!” (Paschal Canon)
read Bishop Michael’s Archpastoral Letter >
Russian language version >
Ukrainian language version >
|Great and Holy Saturday - 05/04/13|
The great Moses mystically foreshadowed this day when he said: “God blessed the seventh day.” This is the blessed Sabbath; this is the day of rest, on which the only-begotten Son of God rested from all His works. By suffering death to fulfill the plan of salvation, He kept the Sabbath in the flesh; by returning again to what He was, He has granted us eternal life through His Resurrection, for He alone is good and the Lover of man. (Vespers of Holy Saturday)
|Great and Holy Friday - 05/03/13|
Today He who hung the earth upon the waters is hung upon the tree of the cross. The King of the Angels is adorned with a crown of thorns. He who wraps the heavens in clouds is wrapped in a purple robe of mockery. He who is the new Adam, manifested at His baptism in the Jordan, is slapped on the face. The Bridegroom of the Church is affixed to the cross with nails. The Son of the Virgin is crucified and pierced by a spear. We worship Your passion, O Christ! We worship Your passion, O Christ! We worship Your passion, O Christ! Show us also Your glorious resurrection! (Antiphon Fifteen)
|Great and Holy Thursday - 05/02/13|
When Your glorious disciples were enlightened at the washing of their feet before the supper, then the impious Judas was darkened by the disease of avarice, and to the lawless judges he betrayed You, the Righteous Judge. Behold, O lover of money, this man Judas who because of avarice hanged himself. Flee from the insatiable desire which dared such things against the Master! O Lord who deals righteously with all, glory to You! (Troparion of Holy Thursday).
| - 04/29/13|
As the Savior went to his passion, he said to his friends: “Everyone will know that you are my disciples if you have love for one another. Be at peace with one another and with every one. Be of humble mind, and you will be exalted. Acknowledge me as Lord! Praise and extol me to all ages." (Matins of Holy Monday)
|Palm Sunday: Entry of Our Lord into Jerusalem - 04/27/13|
You have entered the Holy City, O Lord, riding on the colt of an ass; hastening to Your Passion that the Law and the Prophets might be fulfilled. The Hebrew children greeted You with palms and branches heralding Your victorious Resurrection. Blessed are You, O Savior! Have mercy on us! (Vespers of Palm Sunday)
|Pearl River NY: Holy Mystery of Unction - 04/26/13|
The Orthodox Christian Church of the Holy Transfiguration in Pearl River NY was the venue for the Holy Mystery of Unction celebrated by His Grace, Bishop Michael, with six priests on Tuesday night, 23 April 2013. In his homily Bishop Michael recounted many of the healings recorded in the Holy Gospel and emphasized: “We are a healing Church and the same authority and gift to heal given by our Lord Jesus Christ to His Holy Apostles is given, also, to the priests of the Church.”
|2013 Diocesan Lenten Youth Retreat - 04/25/13|
With the blessing of Bishop Michael, under the direction of Father Jason Vansuch (Chairperson, Department of Youth Ministry), teenagers gathered for an overnight retreat 19-20 April at Holy Resurrection Church in Wayne NJ. This has become an annual tradition for 7th-12th grade students during their Lenten journey to Pascha. Parishes from Long Island, Manhattan, and throughout New Jersey were represented.
|Whitestone NY: Deanery Vespers Service on 21 April - 04/23/13|
On Sunday night, 21 April, the final Lenten Vespers service of 2013 for the New York City Deanery was celebrated at Saint Nicholas Church, Whitestone NY. The church was full of faithful from throughout the deanery and beyond. In his homily, Father Wiaczeslaw Krawczuk (Dean, New York City Deanery) offered a reflection that drew together all of the major themes of Great Lent and encouraged all present to make the Lenten effort to grow in Christian virtue.
|Alpha NJ: Hierarchical Liturgy of the Pre-Sanctified Gifts - 04/22/13|
The faithful of Saint John Baptist Church in Alpha NJ welcomed Bishop Michael for a Hierarchical Liturgy of the Pre-Sanctified Gifts on Friday evening, 19 April. His Grace inspired all with words of encouragement on the Lenten journey to PASCHA. During the service, Archpriest Bohdan Ostash was awarded the Palitza with a “grammata” (certificate of appreciation) for his many years of priestly ministry on the occasion of his 25th Anniversary of Ordination to the Holy Priesthood. May God grant Father Bohdan good health and all good things for “Many Years!”
|Watervliet NY: Saint Anna Icon at St. Basil Church - 04/22/13|
The Myrrh-Streaming Icon of Saint Anna visited Saint Basil’s Orthodox Church in Watervliet NY on Friday, 12 April. Over 120 parish faithful and guests attended the Molieben and Akathist to the Holy and Righteous Joachim and Anna celebrated by Father Peter Olsen (parish rector). Assisting clergy were Father Igor Burdikoff and Father Matthew Markewich.
|Saint Andrew’s Camp: Bike Event & Camping Program - 04/20/13|
Saint Andrew’s Camp in Jewell NY, just north of Syracuse on the shore of Lake Oneida, will sponsor its sag-supported Second Annual Bicycle Ride on SATURDAY, 24 AUGUST. Ride distances are 62 miles, 30 miles, and 12 miles through the beautiful scenery of Upstate New York. The camp has also announced dates and programs for the upcoming summer camping season. Saint Andrew’s offers a complete overnight camping experience (3 week-long sessions) for children ages 7-13 and a “Teen Week” for those 13 and over. Complete information is available on their website: StAndrewsCamp.com
get the Bicycle Ride event flyer >
|Syracuse NY: Archpastoral Visit on Sunday of the Cross - 04/18/13|
The faithful of Saints Peter and Paul Church in Syracuse NY welcomed Bishop Michael for Saturday evening Vespers, Sunday Divine Liturgy, and an evening Lenten Mission Service on 7 April. The celebrations coincided with the annual Lenten commemoration of the Cross. The parish rector, Father John Chupeck, presented His Grace with a donation to Saint Andrew's Camp (website HERE) . Bishop Michael presented Olga Shewchuk with a certificate of appreciation - “grammata” - for her years of service to the parish and commitment to the OCA.
|NJ Deanery: Mission Vespers on 14 April - 04/15/13|
On Sunday afternoon, 14 April, the New Jersey Deanery (Northern region) parishes and priests gathered at Holy Spirit Church in Wantage NJ. The Chancellor of the Diocese of New York and New Jersey, Archpriest Joseph Lickwar, led the Mission Vespers Service. An outstanding homily was delivered by Archpriest Stephen Evanina, rector of Holy Assumption Church in Clifton NJ. After the service the parish rector, Archpriest Samuel Kedala, invited all to join in fellowship in the parish hall where refreshments were provided by families of the parish.
|Buffalo NY: Pre-Sanctified Liturgy on 12 April - 04/14/13|
Bishop Michael joined clergy and faithful of the Buffalo NY area for Pre-Sanctified Liturgy on Friday, 12 April, at Saint George Orthodox Church. The faithful of the parish were joined by members of their sister parish (Saints Peter and Paul Church, Buffalo), and friends from around Western New York State who gathered for worship together with His Grace and local clergy. Bishop Michael inspired all present with words of encouragement on the Lenten journey to PASCHA.
|Lenten Youth Retreat on April 19-20, 2013 - 04/13/13|
The diocese will sponsor an over-night Lenten Youth Retreat at Holy Resurrection Orthodox Church in Wayne NJ for 7th-12th grade students on 19-20 April 2013. The retreat is entitled: “Keeping It Real: Isaiah 41:10”. Orthodox and non-Orthodox students are encouraged to attend. This is a great opportunity for Orthodox young people to invite their non-Orthodox friends! Complete information, details, and registration documents are available HERE.
|Watervliet NY: St. Basil Church Supports “Open Table Soup Kitchen” - 04/09/13|
On Wednesday, April 3rd, students and teachers of Saint Basil Orthodox Church in Watervliet NY, together with Archpriest Peter Olsen (parish rector), helped out at the “Open Table Soup Kitchen” (an outreach project of the Watervliet Methodist Church). The activity involved food preparation and set-up for the meal served later in the day. The soup kitchen serves approximately 100 people every Wednesday. Saint Basil Church School is also leading an effort to increase the on-going food collection by the parish for the “Open Table Pantry” during Great Lent.
|New Video: “Lessons in Our Faith” - 04/04/13|
Bishop Michael offers a new video installment in the acclaimed “Lessons in Our Faith” series. The topic is “Great Lent (Our Spiritual Life).” Using his popular 7 Questions & 7 Answers format, His Grace presents the fundamental teaching and experience of the Church regarding this subject in a clear and concise manner ... in 8 minutes. Other topics in the series are also most appropriate for viewing during the Lenten season: Fasting ~ Confession ~ Time, Talent, Treasure ~ and more. See all of the videos in the “Lessons in Our Faith” section of this website. Or, go HERE!
|New Jersey Deanery: Mission Vespers Service - 04/02/13|
Bishop Michael joined the clergy and faithful of the New Jersey Deanery for a Lenten Mission Vespers Service on Sunday, 31 March (2nd Sunday of Lent: Saint Gregory Palamas) at Christ the Savior Church in Paramus NJ. There are several Lenten Mission Vespers Services planned throughout the diocese on the Sunday evenings of the Lenten season. See the “Upcoming Events” section of this website for details.
|Dix Hills NY: Visit by Saint Vladimir’s Seminary Octet - 04/01/13|
On 31 March the Saint Vladimir’s Seminary Octet visited Saint Andrew's Church, Dix Hills NY, for a morning parish visit during the Divine Liturgy and to participate in the New York City Deanery Lenten Mission Vespers that evening. Attending along with the Octet were the seminary’s Chancellor (Archpriest Chad Hatfield) and SVS Press Marketing Manager (Deacon Gregory Hatrak).
|Saint Tikhon's Seminary: Search for New Dean - 03/25/13|
The Board of Trustees of Saint Tikhon’s Orthodox Theological Seminary, South Canaan PA announces a vacancy in the office of Dean, to be filled effective July 1, 2013. Applications, nominations, and expressions of interest for the position of Dean are now being accepted. Additional information is available HERE.
|Great Lent: Mission Vespers in NJ and NYC - 03/20/13|
UPDATED 21 MARCH The New Jersey and New York City Deaneries will sponsor Lenten Mission Vespers services on several Sunday evenings during Great Lent. These provide an opportunity for clergy and faithful from local parishes to assemble together for prayer and worship as the journey of the Great Fast progresses. Information and details are available in the “Upcoming Events” section of this webpage.
|Let us begin the fast with joy! - 03/16/13|
His Grace, Bishop Michael has issued an Archpastoral Letter for the Great Fast which begins on Monday, 18 March this year. In part, he writes: "All too often, we see the Great Fast in negative terms: The Church wants me to give up meat and dairy products; to pray more and read the Bible and come to Lenten services instead of watching TV and enjoying other forms of entertainment; to give to the poor and other causes; and to come to confession! That’s seven weeks of heavy burdens on my already overstretched personal life!"
|Wayne NJ: Children Discover Liturgical Music - 03/13/13|
On Saturday 9 March, Holy Resurrection Church in Wayne NJ welcomed nineteen young people to sing and learn about Orthodox liturgical music. The workshop ~ “Making Music with Kids” ~ was under the direction and leadership of David Lucs (choir director and composer from Long Island NY) as he guided the children through a program introducing basic concepts of music and four hymns for the upcoming season of Lent and Pascha. “The children were a joy to work with,” said the workshop leader, “their enthusiasm was contagious and it was wonderful to see them discover the beauty and meaning of the hymns of our Orthodox Faith.”
|Altar Servers Retreat - 03/11/13|
The 3rd Annual Diocesan Altar Servers Retreat was held at Saint Basil’s Academy in Garrison NY from Friday, March 1st to Sunday, March 3rd. Over 60 participants were present for all or part of the weekend. Altar servers and clergy came from each of the three deaneries (New York City, New Jersey, New York State) as well as some from the Moscow Patriarchate, Carpatho-Russian Diocese and one young man from the local Academy community.
|Alpha NJ: Archpastoral Visit - 03/04/13|
On the Sunday of the Publican and Pharisee (24 February) Bishop Michael made an archpastoral visit to Saint John the Baptist Orthodox Church in Alpha NJ. It was the third visit to the parish by His Grace as ruling hierarch of the diocese. Great Vespers was served on Saturday evening with Litiya (blessing of loaves, wheat, wine, and oil); after Vespers parishioners and their rector, Archpriest Bohdan Ostash, had a discussion with His Grace during a fellowship reception.
|Distinguished Diocesan Benefactors - 02/26/13|
UPDATED PHOTOS! The three regional 2012 Distinguished Diocesan Benefactors [DDB] Recognition Dinners have concluded ~ to honor those who “stepped up” to the challenge of funding essential ministries in the diocese. They provided financial support for mission parishes, support for seminarians, and support for struggling parishes. Over $125,000 was contributed in 2012! And now, the 2013 DDB Program is underway!
|Altar Server Retreat: 1-3 March at St. Basil's Academy - 02/18/13|
The 3rd Annual Diocesan Altar Server Retreat will take place at Saint Basil’s Academy in Garrison, New York on 1-3 March 2013. Saint Basil's Academy has beautiful grounds offering dormitory style rooms, an indoor basketball court and an Olympic-size indoor swimming pool available for use. There is no charge to participate in the retreat! Arrival and registration is Friday, 1 March beginning at 4:00 pm. Participants should complete REGISTRATION as soon as possible.
more information >
complete details & registration documents >
driving directions >
|NEW VIDEO: "Lessons in Our Faith" - 02/16/13|
“Lessons in Our Faith” is a series of instructional videos produced by the Diocese of New York and New Jersey (Orthodox Church in America) featuring His Grace, Bishop Michael. In this installment, the topic is ANGELS. Using his popular “7 Questions and 7 Answers” format, Bishop Michael discusses this subject in a concise and direct manner. In twelve minutes, the video offers the fundamental teaching about angels within the life of the Church. You'll find all of the videos in the "Lessons in Our Faith" section of this website ... or click here!
|OFFICE OF COMMUNICATIONS: Closed 16-24 February 2013 - 02/16/13|
The Diocesan Office of Communications will be closed from Saturday, February 16th to Sunday, February 24th. Please visit the diocesan administration webpage (here) for essential contact information during this period. News items and announcements received during this time will be processed as soon as possible when the office resumes operations.
|Clifton NJ: DDB Appreciation for New Jersey Deanery - 02/14/13|
The first of three Distinguished Diocesan Benefactor Appreciation Dinners was held for the New Jersey Deanery on Sunday, 10 February in Clifton NJ. The DDBs were honored and recognized with gratitude for their generous contributions in support of diocesan mission parishes, seminarians, and struggling older parishes. Without DDBs, these vital ministries would lack much-needed funding. With DDBs, over $220,000 has been offered over the last two years and these ministries are bringing forth much good fruit in the Lord’s vineyard planted in New York and New Jersey.
|Medford NJ: Choir Concert on 24 February - 02/08/13|
On Sunday, 24 February, at 4:00 pm the choir of the Orthodox Church of the Holy Cross, Medford NJ, and the Seneca High School Chamber Singers will present a Benefit Concert in support of Covenant House, Camden NJ. Representatives of Covenant House, including Father Stephen Siniari, will be present. The concert will take place at the church: 11 Wilkins Station Rd, Medford NJ. Visit the parish website for more information: holycrossmedford.org
event flyer >
|Bayonne NJ: Exhibit of Orthodox Books & Artifacts - 02/07/13|
Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church in Bayonne NJ was very pleased to sponsor an exhibit of books and religious/cultural artifacts of Eastern Europe at the main branch of the Bayonne Public Library during the month of January 2013. The exhibit contained a broad range of books on Orthodox Christian spirituality; these titles entered the library’s general circulation after the exhibit closed.
|Brooklyn NY: “Rejuvenation” at the Cathedral of the Transfiguration - 01/15/13|
“The holiday season is a time for renewal and thanks,” said Father Wiaczeslaw Krawczuk (Rector of the Russian Orthodox Cathedral of the Transfiguration in Brooklyn NY). “It is in this spirit that we as Orthodox Christians come together to celebrate the joyful feast of the Nativity, as a family. The feeling of family relates also to our parishes, which are also rejuvenated from red to gold in the anticipation of a New Year, full of joys and challenges. My parish is going through an additional rejuvenation this year.”
|Bishop Michael: 40th Anniversary of Priesthood - 01/12/13|
A celebration honoring the 40th Anniversary of Bishop Michael's ordination to the Holy Priesthood will take place on Monday, 4 February at Holy Assumption Orthodox Church in Clifton NJ. A Hierarchical Divine Liturgy will begin with the greeting of the bishop at 9:45 a.m. and will be followed by lunch. Complete information is contained in a letter from the Chancellor, Archpriest Joseph Lickwar.
read the Chancellor's letter >
|Watervliet NY: Celebration of Patronal Feast-Day - 01/10/13|
Saint Basil's Orthodox Church in Watervliet/Maplewood NY celebrated its Patronal Feast-Day on Tuesday, 1 January 2013. Celebrating the service for the feast-day of the Circumcision of the Lord along with the commemoration of Saint Basil the Great was His Grace, Bishop Michael, assisted by Father Peter Olsen, parish rector. The traditional cutting of the Saint Basil’s Bread (Vasilopita) containing a coin was held, with the one receiving the coin being “blessed” for the coming year through the intercession of Saint Basil.
|Hurricane Sandy Assistance - 01/07/13|
The Diocesan Council in conjunction with Bishop Michael established a committee to create a structure for receiving donations, applications for assistance, and the distribution of assistance to the diocesan faithful who have suffered losses from Hurricane Sandy. Those requesting assistance should complete the Application for Assistance, which is available here or from the parish.
Assistance Relief letter >
Application for Assistance >
|Glen Gardner NJ: Ordinations - 01/06/13|
On Sunday, 30 December, Bishop Michael ordained Theodore Gregory to the Diaconate and Dr. Corrado John Altomare to the Sub-Diaconate at Saint Gregory Palamas Church in Glen Gardner NJ. May God grant “Many Years!” to the newly ordained Deacon Theodore and Sub-Deacon Corrado. “AXIOS!”
|Feast-Day: Theophany of Our Lord (6 January) - 01/06/13|
[Troparion Hymn] When You, O Lord, were baptized in the Jordan the worship of the Trinity was made manifest! For the voice of the Father bore witness to You, and called You His beloved Son. And the Spirit, in the form of a dove, confirmed the truthfulness of His word. O Christ, our God, You have revealed Yourself, and have enlightened the world, glory to You!
feast-day sermon of Saint John Chrysostom >
|Father Paul Shafran: 65th Anniversary of Ordination - 01/02/13|
[Saint Vladimir's Seminary] On Saturday, 29 December 2012, Very Reverend Paul Shafran celebrated his 65th anniversary of ordination to the Holy Priesthood by presiding at the Divine Liturgy in Three Hierarchs Chapel at Saint Vladimir’s Orthodox Seminary, his alma mater, surrounded by family, friends, and fellow clergy. Father Paul, who briefly served parishes in the Byesville OH area during his days as a young pastor, most recently is Pastor Emeritus of Saint Vladimir Church in Trenton NJ. Full article and photos HERE!
|Saint Andrew's Camp Receives Generous Donation - 12/30/12|
The Orthodox Charitable and Educational Foundation of Saint Andrew’s Camp (Jewell NY) is a recent recipient of a generous donation from the Mutual Fire Foundation, Inc. of Exton PA. Caroline B. Mazza, the Foundation president, says that the donation of $14,500 will sponsor the construction of a cabin for campers. Ms. Mazza stated, “We honor the commitment of your organization, and hope that this donation will help with your mission.” In response, Bishop Michael stated, “Your magnanimous act of charity for the benefit of young campers is, in a very real sense, a gift to Christ the High Priest.”
|South River NJ: Council of Congregations Food Bank - 12/28/12|
The Council of Congregations, in co-operation with the Department of Health for the Borough of South River NJ, has been operating a food bank for over twenty years to assist those in need. Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church has been an active supporter of the food bank and parishioners serve as Chairman (Paul Zelanko) and members (Joan Pisuk & Joyce Major) of the Board of Health. The food bank had been located in the South River Senior Center ... until "Super Storm Sandy" brought destruction to it and the community of South River.
|Binghamton NY: Singing Christmas Carols for Veterans - 12/27/12|
After the Divine Liturgy and a light lunch on 16 December 2012, choir members of Dormition of the Virgin Mary Orthodox Church in Binghamton NY traveled an hour to the Oxford Veterans Home, in Oxford NY to share their annual concert of Christmas carols with the residents. Dr. Philip Dzwonczyk, Chief Medical Officer at the home and devoted choir member, again organized this event for the veterans and the choir directed by Matushka Julia Gotlinsky.
|Christ is Born! Let us Glorify Him! - 12/24/12|
His Grace, Bishop Michael, offers an Archpastoral Letter to the faithful of the diocese on the celebration of our Lord's Nativity. In part, he writes: "Once again we come upon the 'most wonderful time of the year,' as the song goes. What exactly does this mean? For some, it is simply the winter holiday season -- Frosty and Rudolph. For most, it is probably all about Santa, and making a list, and getting great gifts. Certainly for many others, Christmas is about the birth of a beautiful baby in Bethlehem … who grew up to be a great teacher, a gentle healer, perhaps even a miracle worker. But for us who are Orthodox Christians, the Feast of the Nativity is much more than all that."
read the Archpastoral Letter >
Spanish version >
Russian version >
|Watervliet NY: Extraordinary Event for St. Basil’s Orthodox Church - 12/21/12|
On Saturday, 15 December, Deacon Matthew Markewich was ordained to the Holy Priesthood. The Holy Spirit led both Father Matthew and his wife Rebecca to Orthodoxy while college students at SUNY Albany. Both converted to Orthodoxy while attending Saint Basil’s Church under the spiritual guidance and mentoring of Archpriest Peter Olsen, parish rector. Later, they were married in the church. Having completing his studies at Saint Tikhon’s Orthodox Theological Seminary, Matthew was ordained to the diaconate at Saint Basil’s Church and now has been ordained to the priesthood.
|Clifton NJ: 2012 Diocesan Assembly - 12/20/12|
The 2012 Assembly of the Diocese of New York and New Jersey convened on 11 December in Clifton NJ. Over 90 clergy and laity delegates representing diocesan parishes gathered with Bishop Michael for this annual assembly during which the vitally important work of the Church was discussed, considered, and (by the grace of the Holy Spirit) empowered. The address to the Assembly by His Grace and a video presentation on “The Year in Review” are available! Simply go to “more information” to view the videos and additional resources about this significant event in the life of the diocese.
more information >>>
|Archpastoral Letter: Tragedy in Newtown CT - 12/19/12|
His Grace, Bishop Michael, offers an Archpastoral Letter concerning the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut on 14 December. In part, he writes: "The joyful anticipation of the Christmas celebration was shattered for many this past Friday, when the senseless murders of 27 schoolchildren and adults at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, thrust that community into unimaginable horror and pain. This tragedy goes against the nature of morality – and against the very order of nature itself. There is nothing natural about parents burying their children. Many will ask, 'Where was God when this happened?'"
read the Archpastoral Letter >
|December has arrived! “Count-down” for 2012 DDB Contributions! - 12/18/12|
As the world counts-down the shopping days until Christmas, we are counting-down the final days of 2012 in the hope that we will meet our Distinguished Diocesan Benefactors goal to fund three vital ministries in our diocese: (1) Support of Missions, (2) Support of Seminarians, and (3) Support for Struggling Parishes. We are now at 84% of our goal! But, we have 16% ... $17,658 ... to go. Perhaps you, or your parish, can help us to cross the finish line? Donations are tax-deductable and made easy by our secure on-line payment option, or by mail. This is your invitation to get involved ... by becoming a DDB today! Get started HERE!
|Choir Workshop: “Making Music with Kids” - 12/17/12|
On Saturday, 1 December 2012, the Commission on Liturgical Music held its first Children’s Choir Workshop hosted by Saint Andrew Orthodox Church in Dix Hills NY. Led by noted diocesan conductor and musician David Lucs, the workshop was a fun-filled and inspiring day as eight enthusiastic young girls participated in learning several hymns, especially those related to the season of the Nativity, the feast of Saint Nicholas, and Theophany. The children returned home with booklets of liturgical music to share with their parishes along with their newly-acquired skills in liturgical music.
|Watervliet NY: Christmas “Yolka” - 12/15/12|
Saint Basil's Orthodox Church in Watervliet NY held its annual “Yolka” activity on Sunday, 9 December immediately following the Divine Liturgy. A brunch luncheon was served in the Parish Center by the parents, teachers and students. After the luncheon, the Sunday School children entertained parishioners by singing Christmas Carols and performing a Christmas Play: "The Friendly Beast." A visit from Saint Nicholas with gifts for all children followed. “Everyone at Saint Basil's extends a very merry Christmas wish to all,’” said parishioner Bill Rentz, “Christ is Born! Glorify Him!”
|Diocesan Assembly on December 11, 2012 - 12/11/12|The annual Assembly of the Diocese of New York and New Jersey will convene at Assumption of the Holy Virgin Orthodox Church in Clifton NJ on December 11, 2012. Bishop Michael will greet clergy and laity delegates representing parishes from throughout New York and New Jersey for a day-long gathering of prayer, reflection, deliberation, and decision-making. A dedicated webpage provides all of the documents and reports for the Assembly; additional reports will be added as they are received. Visit the DIOCESAN ASSEMBLY WEBPAGE here!
|New POLYCHRONION Released for Parish Use - 11/27/12|
The Commission on Liturgical Music [CoLM] features many helpful resources and information on their dedicated website. For example, a new POLYCHRONION ~ “Many Years!” ~ is now available for use in our parishes, and appropriately commemorates Metropolitan Tikhon along with our Bishop Michael. The website also presents a directory of diocesan choir directors, mentors, news & events, and an ever-growing compilation of liturgical music composed or arranged by diocesan musicians. In the Divine Liturgy section alone there are now 28 offerings of music (some with an audio “LISTEN” feature). Visit the CoLM website by using the icon link on this webpage, or click here! Get the new POLYCHRONION now ~ click here!
|Archbishop Tikhon elected Metropolitan of All America and Canada - 11/25/12|
PARMA, OH [OCA] Archbishop Tikhon, Archbishop of Philadelphia and Eastern Pennsylvania, was elected Primate of the Orthodox Church in America during the 17th All-American Council of the Orthodox Church in America at Holy Trinity Church in Parma OH, on November 13, 2012. Six hundred and sixty-three hierarchs, clergy and lay delegates and observers representing OCA parishes across the US, Canada and Alaska participated in the Council.
read more, visit podcasts & photos >
|Making Music with Kids: An Orthodox Experience - 11/24/12|This workshop, sponsored by the Commission on Liturgical Music [CoLM], is designed to introduce children to basic music reading concepts, as well as teach them simple prayers set to music. No experience is necessary - only a desire to learn more about the services which we attend on a weekly basis. Parents are also encouraged to attend. Lunch will be provided, along with sheet music to bring home and to your home parish afterwards! All instruction will be in English. It will take place on Saturday, 1 December 2012 at Saint Andrew Orthodox Church, Dix Hills NY from 9:00 am – 3:00 pm. Details and registration are available in the "Upcoming Events" section or on the CoLM website (click here).
|Bayonne NJ: 90th Anniversary Celebration - 11/20/12|
Saints Peter & Paul Orthodox Church, Bayonne NJ, celebrated the 90th Anniversary of its founding. Three events marked this milestone: The first was on Wednesday, 10 October, when the miraculous Myrrh-Streaming Hawaiian Iveron Icon of the Most Holy Theotokos came for a visit; the second was on Sunday, October 14, when the Divine Liturgy was followed by the official opening of the Church Library with a Molieben served in the parish hall; the third celebration was on the weekend of 27-28 October as Bishop Michael celebrated Great Vespers, a Panikheda for departed parishioners, and the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy on Sunday followed by a celebratory banquet.
|Hurricane Sandy Diocesan Relief Fund - 11/19/12|
Bishop Michael has established a Diocesan Relief Fund to offer assistance to those affected by the devastation of Super-Storm Sandy. In a letter to the diocese, His Grace writes, in part: "We may dare to hope that many of those left hurting in Sandy’s wake will be drawn closer to Christ when they see Christians helping them. We may hope, too, that we Christians will be drawn even more deeply to Christ as well -- by helping: prayerfully … financially … physically. Just days ago, we heard the Sunday Gospel story of the Good Samaritan. Need we ask, 'Who is my neighbor?' Our neighbors are right here … and they are hurting. Let us emulate the healing presence of the kind-hearted foreigner in that profound parable; and in so doing, may we draw our neighbors and ourselves closer to the hope, the love, and the life that are found only in Jesus Christ."
read Bishop Michael's letter and appeal >
|Whitestone NY: Update following Super-Storm Sandy - 11/14/12|
We have received a video update on conditions at Saint Nicholas Orthodox Church in Whitestone NY produced by, and starring, Father Joseph Woodill.
|Watervliet NY: Healing Service - 11/13/12|
Saint Basil’s Orthodox Church in Watervliet NY conducted a Healing Service on Tuesday evening, 13 November 2012. A Molieben (prayers of thanksgiving) to the Most-Holy Theotokos was celebrated by parish rector, Father Peter Olsen, with responses sung by the parish choir under the direction of Michael Mellin. Approximately 100 people participated, and many faithful brought their neighbors, friends, and acquaintances along with them. Everyone was welcomed!
|Election Day: A Tale of Two Kingdoms - 11/08/12|
Tuesday, November 6th, was “election day.” The results will affect our nation, our states, our counties, our districts, our cities, our towns, and our villages. On Tuesday, November 13th, in Parma OH, there will be an election affecting our Orthodox Church in America, our dioceses, our deaneries, our parishes, and our faithful. In some ways, these elections are similar. But fundamentally, they could not be more different. In my opinion, to confuse them is perilous; to equate them, tragic.
|Hurricane Sandy Relief Efforts: YOU can help! - 11/01/12|
In the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy large areas within (and outside of) our diocese are experiencing outages of power, interrupted/absent communications, and scarcities of food and water. Relief efforts are underway, but limited material and manpower resources point to a lengthy and difficult period of recovery. Long Island, for example, remains mostly dark and cold with officials reporting it may take several days for a wide-scale return of residential power. Your prayers and kindness in offering financial assistance are ways you can help. “I urge parishes and individuals throughout our diocese to do what they can,” said Bishop Michael. “Please become as involved as possible in this effort.”
How can YOU help? Go HERE!
|Hurricane Sandy hits Diocesan Region [Photograph by Adrian Fussell/Getty Images] - 10/30/12|The Chancery of the Diocese of New York and New Jersey is currently without electricity or phone service, due to the effects of Hurricane Sandy. Urgent messages can be directed to Father David Cowan, Secretary to Bishop Michael, at 914-965-6815 or email.
|Watervliet NY: Fall Harvest Festival - 10/29/12|
Saint Basil’s Orthodox Church in Watervliet (Maplewood) NY held its inaugural “Fall Harvest Fest” on Saturday, 20 October. The day’s activities were centered on the life of the church. Established 110 years ago, the parish welcomed guests and friends to tours of the church conducted by Father Peter Olsen (parish rector). “The Fall Fest accomplished its objective of bringing not only the faithful to the event but also afforded many local residents a casual manner of seeing and understanding Saint Basil’s Orthodox Church,” said parishioner Bill Rentz, “and to enjoy fellowship from all.”
|Shirley NY: First Annual Icon Workshop - 10/22/12|Saint John the Theologian Orthodox Church (Shirley NY) conducted a workshop from October 8-12, 2012 on iconography and iconology. Facilitating the workshop were: Father Mefodii, a monk from the Skete of Saint Maximos the Confessor (Palmyra VA/Bulgarian Patriarchate); and Adele McHugh, a student of the Prosopon School. Those interested in participating in next year’s workshop should contact: email here
|Father Kilian Sprecher: US Navy Reserve Chaplain - 10/19/12|
Father (Hieromonk) Kilian Sprecher is assigned as Acting Rector of Saint Gregory Palamas Church in Glen Gardner NJ. He is also a seminarian in the Master of Theology program at Saint Vladimir's Orthodox Theological Seminary, Yonkers (Crestwood) NY. On 12 October 2012, Father Kilian graduated from Officer Development School (ODS) at the Naval Station in Newport, Rhode Island. Bishop Michael was present at the graduation ceremony. Congratulations and "Many Years!" to Chaplain and Lieutenant Christopher Sprecher, CHC, USNR.
|New Issue: "Jacob's Well" (Summer/Fall 2012) - 10/17/12|
"Jacob’s Well" is the official publication of the Diocese New York-New Jersey. It provides, as did the well in ancient communities, a place for the distribution of news and activities regarding the life of the Diocese and its parishes. But like the story of the Samaritan woman at Jacob’s Well (John 4), it also seeks to be a vehicle which provides not just news but opportunities for reflection on the living encounter with Jesus Christ. Read the new issue, and previous issues, here!
|DDB: An Invitation to Join! - 10/15/12|
Now that we have entered the 4th quarter of the 2012 fiscal year, it’s a good time to consider your opportunity to support diocesan ministries by joining the ever-growing list of Distinguished Diocesan Benefactors (DDBs). There is a critical need for additional support to mission parishes! Funds are also designated for seminarian scholarships and support to struggling existing parishes. For complete details, visit the “Vision for Our Future” section of this website. Go HERE!
|17th All-American Council: Support Urgently Needed - 10/12/12|
[OCA.org] For Alaskan residents, a ticket from the Anchorage hub to Cleveland can cost nearly $800.00 — if purchased today; in a few weeks, a ticket can cost over $1,000.00 [travel from Mexico is also costly]. Our goal is to raise $15,000 to defray travel expenses so all parishes can be represented at the 17th All-American Council. An anonymous donor has offered a matching grant. For a limited time your donation will be doubled. Please give today to keep delegate costs down as much as possible. DONATE NOW!
|NEW VIDEO: "Marriage ~ 7 Questions & 7 Answers"" - 10/08/12|
“Lessons in Our Faith” is a series of instructional videos produced by the Diocese of New York and New Jersey (Orthodox Church in America) featuring His Grace, Bishop Michael. In this installment, the topic is MARRIAGE. Using his popular “7 Questions and 7 Answers” format, Bishop Michael discusses this subject in a concise and direct manner. In twelve minutes, the video offers the fundamental teaching about this sacrament within the life of the Church. The entire "Lessons in Our Faith" series is available on this website ... here!
|Junior FOCA: Upper NYS Convention Scheduled - 10/07/12|
Junior FOCA [Fellowship of Orthodox Christians in America] members will sponsor their 2012 Convention on November 10, 2012 at Saint Nicholas Church in Auburn NY. The day will include a meeting to discuss activities and elect officers, followed by a bowling tournament and evening activities at a local game center. The bowling tournament and evening activities are open to all young people (ages 8 to 18) regardless of FOCA membership. Costs are kept to a minimum and include bowling and evening activities. Meals are provided free of charge for participants with a minimal charge for accompanying parents.
|Rochester NY: Blessing of Pets - 10/04/12|
Dogs, cats, hens, hamsters, roosters, fish and others were brought to Saint John the Baptist Orthodox Church in Rochester NY for a blessing on Saturday, 29 September. “We invited our neighbors within a three-block radius of the church to join our parishioners for a cook-out followed by a molieben service and blessing of their pets,” said Father Ken James Stavrevsky (parish rector). Flyers announcing the event were delivered, door-to-door, by Sub-deacon Sean McNulty. “My little Sammy was very well-behaved,” said Heather McNulty of her adorable and energetic canine, “I think the blessing had an effect on him!”
view the photos >
|Lansing NY: 2013 OCA Church Planting Grant Recipient - 10/02/12|
First-year grants have been awarded by the Orthodox Church in America to Holy Archangels Church, Annapolis MD, in the Archdiocese of Washington DC and Holy Apostles Church, Lansing NY, in the Diocese of New York & New Jersey served by Priest James Worthington. “Each of these missions receives a substantial grant of $24,000 for the first year and $20,000 for the second year, matched by the missions, in order to support the full-time ministry and missionary work of their priests,” said Priest John Parker (Chairperson of the Department of Evangelization).
read more here >>>
|Jackson NJ: Archpastoral Visit on Feast-day - 10/01/12|
An “Old Calendar” commemoration of the feast-day of the Nativity of the Holy Theotokos took place at Saint Mary's Church in Jackson NJ on 20-21 September. His Grace, Bishop Michael, celebrated the Vigil on Thursday evening and Hierarchical Divine Liturgy on Friday. Following the Divine Liturgy, a procession was made around the temple and His Grace offered prayers at the grave of His Eminence, Archbishop Gregory (Afonsky). A festal banquet followed in Saint Mary's Church hall.
|Ordination of Father John Diamantis: "AXIOS!" - 10/01/12|
On Saturday, 29 September, Father John Diamantis was ordained to the Holy Priesthood by Bishop Michael at Holy Trinity Church, East Meadow NY. Father John is the Chairperson of the Diocesan Department of College Ministry and his wife, Matushka Andrea, is the Director of the Diocesan Department of Religious Education. May God grant them “Many Years!”
|Choir Appreciation Day - 09/30/12|
The Diocese of New York and New Jersey marks Choir Appreciation Day today, 30 September 2012, the eve of the feast day of Saint Romanos the Melodist. Rectors and faithful of the diocese should take time on this day to thank and encourage their choir leaders and singers. The dedication and abilities of these Orthodox Christians contribute immeasurably to our worship. A Liturgy without sung responses is impossible! We need to nurture and encourage our singing leaders – and thank them on this day for their pious work!
Bishop Michael's letter >>>
|Council of Presbyters Meet - 09/26/12|
The twelve-priest Diocesan Council of Presbyters [CP] gathered with Bishop Michael at the Diocesan Center on 24 September 2012. In appointing the members of the CP, His Grace said: “In consonance with our Church’s teaching on conciliarity, handed down to us from as long ago as Saint Ignatius of Antioch, it is my intention to establish a Council of Presbyters to advise the Bishop of New York and New Jersey on matters pertaining to the life, growth and development of our Diocese.”
|60th Anniversary of Ordination: "Many Years!" Father Daniel Hubiak - 09/24/12|
On Monday, October 1st, Bishop Michael will celebrate a special Service of Thanksgiving (Molieben) marking the 60th Anniversary of the priestly ordination of Protopresbyter Daniel Hubiak. Father Daniel and his wife Matushka Evelyn (known by all as Dunia) have served the Orthodox Church in America with unwavering dedication and faithfulness in a number of capacities and parishes, many of them in our diocese. The service will take place at 1:00 p.m. at Saints Peter and Paul Church, Jersey City NJ. A reception in the church hall will follow.
|Diaconal Formation Program Begins Semester - 09/21/12|
Students participating in the Diocesan Diaconal Formation Program [DFP] began their studies on Saturday, 15 September, at the Endicott NY campus. New students joined with the returning class for the DFP intensive 2-year/4-semester program of study accredited by Saint Tikhon’s Orthodox Theological Seminary. Courses include both academic study and liturgical practicum. For information about the DFP, contact Father Alexey Karlgut: firstname.lastname@example.org
|Wantage NJ: 9/11 Memorial Service - 09/19/12|
A memorial service was held at Holy Spirit Church (Wantage NJ) for the victims of the 11 September 2001 terrorist attacks on America. The event marked the parish’s eleventh year of offering memorial prayers for victims of the attacks on the World Trade Center in New York City, the Pentagon in Alexandria VA~Washington DC, and the fallen aircraft in Shanksville PA. In attendance were firefighters from Unionville NY, Johnson NY, Franklin NJ and Sussex NJ. A fellowship reception followed the service.
|Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops: Third Annual Meeting - 09/13/12|
The Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops of North and Central America held its third annual meeting for all member hierarchs, that is, all active canonical bishops in its region. The meeting was held from September 10-12, 2012, at the Chicago O'Hare Hilton in Chicago, Illinois. Forty-three bishops, including Bishop Michael, were in attendance. The message signed by the hierarchs says, in part: "We reaffirm our commitment ... to safeguard and deepen Orthodox unity, to promote common pastoral action, to offer common witness in our region, and to overcome canonical anomalies... As we assemble in Chicago, we also take this opportunity to encourage all of you, the People of God, in a world exploited and polarized by greed, godlessness, and immorality. We call upon all Orthodox Christians to be faithful to their calling to be the light of the world."
Press Release >>> Official Message >>> photos>>>
|Rochester NY: Blessing of Deer Run Winery - 09/12/12|
On Sunday, 26 August 2012, Saint John the Baptist Church in Rochester NY blessed the vineyards, vines, grapes, wine presses, barrels, and new wine at Deer Run Winery at nearby Geneseo NY. “Our gracious hosts and vintners were George, Joan and Scott Kuyon,” said Father Ken James Stavrevsky (parish rector). “In addition to a wide variety of fine New York State wines of the Finger Lakes Region, we are blessed to use wine grown, harvested, and lovingly fermented here for our Eucharistic celebrations.” This marked the eighth consecutive year of the annual blessing at Deer Run Winery which included a wine-tasting and fellowship meal for parishioners and friends.
view the photos >>>
|Holy Myrrhbearers Monastery Celebrates 35th Anniversary - 09/06/12|
Holy Myrrhbearers Monastery, Otego NY, celebrated the 35th anniversary of their founding as a stavropegial women’s monastery of the Orthodox Church in America on 25 & 26 August 2012. (A “stavropegial” monastery is one which falls directly under the omophorion of the primate of the church rather than under a local diocesan bishop). The weekend events also celebrated the 40th anniversary of monastic-life profession for Mother Raphaela, Abbess of the monastery; and the 50th anniversary of monastic-life profession of Mother Michaela, a nun with the Holy Myrrhbearers Sisterhood for nearly a decade. Mother Raphaela was presented with a jeweled cross by Archbishop Tikhon on behalf of the Holy Synod of Bishops of the OCA. In addition, before the Divine Liturgy on Sunday, Sister Deborah was tonsured to the riassa by the hand of Bishop Matthias. Hierarchs, clergy, friends and supporters from across the country and from many Orthodox jurisdictions joined the milestone celebrations! For a full press release detailing the celebration on the OCA website, please visit HERE.
|Parma, Ohio: 17th All-American Council on 13 November - 09/04/12|
Registration forms, hotel information, and related materials for the 17th All-American Council of the Orthodox Church in America (Tuesday, November 13, 2012) are now available. “Per the Statute of the Orthodox Church in America, parishes will need to elect new delegates,” said Archpriest Eric G. Tosi, OCA Secretary. “Registration forms, as per normal procedures for an All-American Council, must be completed and received by the OCA Chancery by October 15.” Hotel reservations will open on Wednesday, September 5.
registration forms >>> NEW! Delegate Handbook >>>
|Ordination: Deacon Simeon (Terry) Peet - 09/03/12|
On August 29th, the Feast of the Beheading of Saint John the Baptist, Diocesan Diaconal Formation Program [DFP] graduate Simeon Terry Peet was ordained to the Holy Diaconate by Bishop Michael during the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy at Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church, Endicott NY. Deacon Simeon was a member of the program’s inaugural class at the Endicott NY Campus. He and eight of his fellow classmates graduated and received a Certificate in Diaconal Formation during commencement ceremonies at Saint Tikhon’s Seminary on 26 May 2012.
|Welcome to College Ministry! - 08/30/12|
The Department of College Ministry [DoCM] held its inaugural event “The Fields are White for Harvest: Welcome to College Ministry” on Saturday, 18 August at Holy Trinity Church in Yonkers NY. In establishing the DoCM, Bishop Michael appointed Deacon John Diamantis (Holy Trinity Orthodox Church, East Meadow NY) as chairperson. Deacon John serves concurrently in a similar capacity with the national Orthodox Christian Fellowship as District Chaplain. A website for the DoCM has been established and a direct icon-link is displayed on this homepage.
read Release # 2012.26.1 >
visit DoCM website >
|Happy Birthday and "Many Years!" - 08/29/12|
August 29th is Bishop Michael's birthday. The clergy and faithful of the diocese offer thanks unto God for the archpastoral ministry of their spiritual shepherd and enthusiastcally join together in singing "Eis Polla Eti Despota!" You may read His Grace's official biography, view his videos, and read his archpastoral letters here.
|2012 Clergy Conference in Wayne NJ - 08/27/12|
Holy Resurrection Church in Wayne NJ was the site of this year’s Clergy Conference held on 21-22 August. The conference theme was marriage counseling, with a focus on “FOCCUS” (a valuable resource for pastoral pre-marriage preparation). Through the inspiration and with the blessing of Bishop Michael, the conference welcomed 28 diocesan priests as participants.The conference facilitator/trainer was Maggie Hock. She is the North American Director of the Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America Department of Marriage & Parish Family Ministries. Khouriya Maggie is a fully licensed and credentialed Psychotherapist and Mediator (LMHP, CPC, LPC), specializing in crisis and trauma, individual, marital, parenting, group therapy and corporate dynamics.
|Youth Day 2012: “The Future of Our Church” - 08/24/12|
The 2nd Annual Diocesan Youth Day was on 16 August as over 100 participants gathered at Saint Mary Orthodox Church, Jackson NJ. The weather was beautiful; the enthusiasm spectacular! Participants included 7 Clergy, 30 adult chaperones and 70+ youth participants representing 13 parishes in our diocese. A parish from Rahway NJ of the American Carpatho-Russian Diocese also participated. At registration each youth participant was given a green t-shirt to wear with “Orthodox Youth Day 2012” written on the front so they could easily be identified.
|17th All-American Council: 13 November 2012 - 08/23/12|
SYOSSET NY [OCA] ~ Holy Trinity Church, Parma OH, will be the site of the 17th All-American Council of the Orthodox Church in America, a one-day gathering on Tuesday, November 13, 2012 -- the Feast of Saint John Chrysostom -- at which a new Primate of the Orthodox Church in America will be elected. The Council will open with the celebration of the Divine Liturgy, followed by brunch. An electoral plenary session will follow, after which the newly elected Primate will be installed prior to the closing session. Space for observers will be limited. Additional information will be released in the coming weeks as final plans become available.
ADDED 24 AUG: Letter from Diocesan Chancellor>>>
read more at oca.org>>>
|Regional Church School Conferences - 08/21/12|
Three Church School Conferences, one in each Deanery (New Jersey, New York City, New York State), were conducted during the month of August. A “first” for our diocese, this targeted focus on parish religious education is inspired by Bishop Michael’s dedication to nurturing the spiritual growth and development of children ~ of all ages ~ by providing training and resources to program directors and teachers. Looking ahead, Church School Conferences will be an annual diocesan event thanks to the financial support provided by the Distinguished Diocesan Benefactors program [DDB]. Visit the "Vision for Our Future" link on this webpage for details, and an invitation to join the DDB.
|BRICK NJ: Icons Blessed & Father Breton Awarded Jeweled Cross - 08/21/12|
[The Asbury Park Press, Dan Radel]
A visit from a bishop can turn any ordinary Sunday service into something extraordinary. But at the Orthodox Christian Church of the Annunciation on Van Zile Road in Brick, not only did Bishop Michael from the Diocese of New York and New Jersey visit the church [18-19 August], but he also blessed its newly finished iconography and bestowed a jeweled cross to the Rev. Gary Breton. “It’s a very special day for us to have the bishop come and bless the icons. They have changed the atmosphere of the church,” said parish member Mathew Petrides of Wall.
|New York City: Ordination of Deacon David Chow - 08/20/12|
During a Sunday Hierarchical Divine Liturgy at Christ the Savior Orthodox Church (Manhattan) on 12 August, Bishop Michael ordained Diocesan Diaconal Formation Program graduate David Chow to the Holy Diaconate. Deacon David was a member of the program’s inaugural class at the Endicott NY Campus; on 26 May 2012, he and eight of his fellow classmates graduated and received a Certificate in Diaconal Formation. New students will join second-year classmates in the two-year/4 semester course of intense study later this month. Those interested in the program should contact their parish rector for details.
|Music Submitted by Diocesan Musicians - 08/18/12|
The Commission on Liturgical Music [CoLM] reports that composed/arranged liturgical music by musicians in the diocese is now available on their website, with additional submissions to be added as received and approved. To date, sheet music (some with accompanying audio files) has been published in the categories of “Divine Liturgy,” “Great Lent & PASCHA,” “Nativity of Our Lord,” and “Supplemental.” Musicians interested in submitting original or arranged liturgical music should refer to the news release available HERE. A direct-link icon to the CoLM website is permanently displayed on this website, and offers many resources to parish choir directors and singers.
|NY State Deanery: "Matushki Get Together" - 08/14/12|
On Saturday, 11 August, several Matushki (wives of priests/deacons) of the New York State Deanery enjoyed a 2-hour boat cruise upon the sparkling bluish-green waters of Skaneateles Lake. One of the extraordinary lakes of the world renowned Finger Lakes Region of Upstate New York, glacier formed Lake Skaneateles boasts spring fed crystal clear waters and breathtaking views.
|New Jersey Deanery: Church School Conference - 08/07/12|
Forty church school teachers gathered at Holy Resurrection Church in Wayne NJ on Saturday, 4 August, for an entire day devoted to church school teachers/directors training. Matushka Myra Kovalak (Elevation of the Holy Cross Church, Williamsport PA), accompanied by trainers Father George Alberts and Nike Bach facilitated and led discussions on a wide range of topics. See the “Upcoming Events” section of this website for details regarding the two Church School Conferences scheduled for the New York City and New York State Deaneries.
|East Meadow NY: Parish Family Gathering - 08/07/12|
As part of ongoing efforts at Holy Trinity Church, East Meadow NY, to strengthen the Orthodox Faith among its community, the Church School Association [CSA] organized a Parish Family Gathering on Sunday, 5 August -- the eve of the feast-day of Transfiguration. Members and friends of the parish, both young and old, gathered together for dinner and a Q&A session led by the parish rector, Father Martin Kraus, before attending the festal vigil together.
|NEW VIDEO: "Lessons in Our Faith" - 08/03/12|
A new installment of the highly acclaimed video series Lessons in Our Faith is now available for viewing! Using his popular “7 Questions and 7 Answers” format ... but, this time in reverse ... Bishop Michael answers 7 thought-provoking questions presented to him by 7 campers during the camping season at Saint Andrew’s Camp in Jewell NY. The questions range from bioethical concerns to ecclesiology to the sensitive issue of marital divorce and more!
visit "Lessons in Our Faith" >
|New York State Deanery: Choir Conference - 07/31/12|
On Saturday, 28 July, the Commission on Liturgical Music sponsored a conference & workshop exploring the spiritual and historical structure of the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy. Held at Holy Myrrhbearers Monastery in Otego NY, the program featured opening comments by Bishop Michael and sessions lead by the guest facilitator, Aleksei V. Shipovalnikov (director of “The Spirit of Orthodoxy Choir” and music director of Saints Peter & Paul Church in Jersey City NJ). Professor Shipovalnikov presented insightful, essential pointers about leading the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy from a choir director's point of view. He also shared his expertise accumulated through a wealth of experiences leading liturgical singing in Russia and elsewhere.
|Bishop Michael Honors John Kozak: “Many Years!” - 07/30/12|
On Thursday evening, 26 July, during Great Vespers at Saint Andrew's Camp (Jewell NY) a long-time friend and dedicated volunteer of the camp, John Kozak, was presented with a gramota by Bishop Michael. His Grace recognized John for his tireless and selfless commitment to serving the camp and its youth, and for always putting the children, their safety, their growth in the faith, and their camp experience first. Pointing to John as an example and role-model, His Grace was able to impart to the campers the importance of ministering as faithful laypeople in Christ’s church.
|Conference: “Orthodox Christian Fellowship” Campus Ministry - 07/29/12|
The conference will take place (Saturday) 18 August from 10am-3pm at Holy Trinity Church, Yonkers NY. The goal is to orient us for ministry on college campuses within the territory of our diocese. “Very often I hear from parish council members, from parishioners, and especially from parents,” said Bishop Michael, “ how we have ‘lost’ many of our college students from active membership in our parishes. This Conference is an attempt to overturn that deadly, negative current! ... I urge our priests to attend ... and to send members of their parish council, parents and other parishioners from their communities.” This Conference is free of charge to our parishes. Please email email@example.com to RSVP your attendance. View the Conference flyer HERE!
|Church School Conferences - 07/26/12|
Calling all parish Church School Coordinators and Teachers! The diocese will sponsor three regional Church School Conferences for coordinators and teachers. The dates/locations are: 4 August in Wayne NJ, 11 August in Whitestone NY, and 18 August in Endicott NY. Please see the information in the “Upcoming Events” section of this website. You will find a conference flyer and registration brochure included with the conference information for each location.
|2012 YOUTH DAY: 16 AUGUST - 07/25/12|
This year's Diocesan Youth Day will take place on Thursday, 16 August at SIX FLAGS GREAT ADVENTURE THEME PARK. Complete information, details, and registration documents are available HERE.
Department of Youth Ministry website >>>
|Archpastoral Visit: Yonkers NY - 07/24/12|
Bishop Michael visited Holy Trinity Church in Yonkers NY on Saturday and Sunday, 14-15 July 2012. His Grace presided at Great Vespers on Saturday and at the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy on Sunday, during which he awarded the "Kamilavka" to Father David Cowan and also installed Father David as Rector of Holy Trinity Church. Bishop Michael stayed for a luncheon afterward in the parish Education Building, where he held an “Ask the Bishop” question-and-answer forum with the faithful.
|TEENS & TOOLS: Diocesan Youth Mission to Appalachia - 07/23/12|
During one hot, muggy week in July, the 11-member Orthodox Youth Mission Team was not to be found basking in the sun, nor huddling by the air conditioner. Instead, these young missionaries -- including 4 from Holy Trinity Church in Yonkers NY -- were wielding power tools and infectious smiles, rebuilding homes for families in need near Johnson City, Tennessee. This was part of the Appalachia Service Project [ASP] youth mission initiative.
|Distinguished Diocesan Benefactors - 07/19/12|
DDBs are people like you! They are lay people, monastics, priests and deacons. Some are parishes, like your parish! They share in sustaining the work of the Church in our Diocese. They make things happen! They provide necessary assistance to our mission parishes, they support our seminarians, and they revitalize our older parishes. You may already be a DDB ... or, you may become one! New DDBs are being added almost every day.
see the list of DDBs >
learn more! >
|Jewell NY: A Slice of Life at Saint Andrew's Camp - 07/18/12|
Summer is in full-swing at Saint Andrew's Camp located on the shores of Oneida Lake in Jewell NY. Beginning last May, an army of volunteers has been heading up to this picturesque corner of Upstate New York to assist in getting the camp into shape: mowing lawns, getting supplies, painting walls, and a thorough cleaning of the chapel, kitchen, and bunks. Though now only halfway through its second week of this year's camping program, the place is alive with youthful energy to complement the natural beauty.
|Happy Birthday & Many Years! - 07/17/12|
Archpriest Paul Shafran, Pastor Emeritus of Saint Vladimir Church in Trenton NJ, turned 90 on July 2, 2012. An in-home celebration was joined by many members of his extended family and a few close friends, who feted him with toasts and speeches, songs with customized lyrics, and walks down memory lane with photos and music from his younger days. We extend our warm congratulations to Father Paul and ask that God bless him with good health and all good things for many years!
|Letter: Resignation of Metropolitan Jonah - 07/16/12|
In a letter dated 16 July 2012, Bishop Michael discusses the recent resignation of Metropolitan Jonah, In part, His Grace writes: "We, the Holy Synod of Bishops of the Orthodox Church in America, have hesitated to release further details surrounding the resignation of Metropolitan Jonah as Primate of our Church, this in a desire to preserve his dignity and to prevent further harm to an innocent party. We did this knowing there would be appeals for additional information regarding our decision."
read Bishop Michael's letter >
|Upstate NY: Picnic & Archpastoral Visit to Rochester - 07/11/12|
On Thursday, 5 July, the clergy families of the New York State Deanery were hosted by Bishop Michael for their annual picnic. The event took place thanks to the coordination of Father James Worthington and the faithful of Holy Apostles Mission Parish in Lansing NY. Then, from Friday through Sunday (6-8 July), His Grace made an archpastoral visit to Saint John the Baptist Church in Rochester NY where he participated in a Friday evening social with parish council members and parish ministry coordinators, the “Saturday Family Vespers Day” and, following the Divine Liturgy on Sunday, the parish’s annual Pasta Dinner.
|Archpastoral Visits: Passaic NJ & Endicott NY - 07/02/12|
On 23-24 June, the occasion of their patronal feast-day, Saint John the Baptist Church in Passaic NJ was blessed to have a visit by Bishop Michael. On the feast-day of Saints Peter & Paul ~ Friday, 29 June ~ His Grace celebrated the hierarchical Liturgy in Endicott NY on the parish’s patronal feast-day. During the Liturgy, Mark Bohush was ordained to the holy Diaconate.
|2012 Parish Council Conferences Concluded - 06/29/12|
The three regional (by deanery) Parish Council Conferences for 2012 were conducted at Cifton NJ, Endicott NY, and Whitestone NY. More than 150 parish council members from diocesan parishes attended. The guest facilitator, Maureen Jury of the Diocese of the South, offered a well-received and information packed discussion regarding "Financial Stewardship." The Endicott NY conference was recorded and videos of the event will be available on this website shortly. It is hoped that all parish council members, and interested faithful, who were unable to attend one of the conferences will take the opportunity to view the videos.
|New Video: Baptism of Infants - 06/27/12|
NEW! Lesson outline available! The latest video installment of “Lessons in Our Faith” features Bishop Michael as he provides practical and concise teaching on the Baptism of Infants. His Grace discusses the theological and sacramental considerations of this subject with biblical references, patristic commentary, and reflections on the faith and life of the Church ... in less than 10 minutes! This is the 7th lesson available in the “Lessons in Our Faith” section of this website.
go to “Lessons in Our Faith” >
|New York City: Ordination of Father David Poling - 06/26/12|
Father (Chandler) David Poling was ordained to the holy priesthood at the Cathedral of the Holy Virgin Protection in NYC, on Fathers’ Day ~ Sunday, 17 June ~ by the Grace of God and the hand of Bishop Michael. His Grace also elevated Deacon Patrick Baumgarth to the honor and dignity of Protodeacon, and presented certificates of appreciation [“gramota”] to several recipients for their long-standing service to the Cathedral parish. Father Poling will be assigned as pastor of Saint Innocent Orthodox Mission in Oneonta NY.
|Clifton NJ: Parish Council Conference - 06/19/12|
The first of three Parish Council Conferences in the diocese was held on Saturday, 16 June in Clifton NJ. Nearly 100 participants gathered with Bishop Michael and the conference facilitator, Maureen Jury (Metropolitan Council and Diocese of the South Diocesan Council member). The focus of the conferences is “Financial Stewardship.” The New York State Deanery will host the second conference on 23 June in Endicott NY, and the New York City Deanery on 24 June in Whitestone NY. All parish council members in the diocese are strongly encouraged to attend; a video of the Endicott conference will be made available on DVD for council members unable to participate.
|OPERATION BUFFALO: “Marching Forward!” - 06/13/12|
Bishop Michael made his annual archpastoral visit to Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church in Buffalo NY on 9-10 June with the celebration of the feast of “All Saints.” The celebrations began with Vespers with Litiya on Saturday (9 June) followed by a dinner in the newly renovated parish hall. On Sunday (10 June) the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy was celebrated. His Grace encouraged parishioners to “take seriously the call to holiness and to follow the example of saints.” At the conclusion of the Divine Liturgy, Janet Hetzel was awarded a certificate of appreciation by Bishop Michael for her faithful service to the parish.
|CONGRATULATIONS: Jeweled Cross, Archpriest, Ordination - 06/12/12|
On Saturday, 9 June, during the Hierarchical Liturgy at Holy Trinity Church in Elmira Heights NY, Bishop Michael: Awarded the jeweled cross to Archpriest Jason Kappanadze; Elevated Priest Ilya Gotlinsky to the rank of Archpriest; and Ordained sub-deacon Gregory White (a graduate of our Diocesan Diaconal Formation Program) to the Holy Diaconate. “Axios! Axios! Axios!”
|Council of Presbyters: Meeting on 18 June - 06/11/12|
The Council of Presbyters will meet with His Grace, Bishop Michael, at the Diocesan Center in Bronxville NY on Monday, 18 June. On the following day (Tuesday), the Diocesan Council will meet in the same venue. These administrative bodies assemble semi-annually and monthly, respectively, to provide guidance and collaboration in the on-going life of the diocese. We pray that their gatherings will be inspired and moved by the indwelling grace of the Holy Spirit.
|New Video: Lessons in Our Faith - 06/04/12|
A new video installment of "Lessons in Our Faith" is now available! The topic is the "Sacrament of Chrismation." Using his popular 7 Questions & 7 Answers format, Bishop Michael provides clear and concise teaching about our faith. This is the sixth lesson in the series. Each video is less than 10 minutes in length, but full of information and insights.
visit "Lessons in Our Faith" >>>
read the news Release >>>
|Holy Myrrhbearers Monastery: 35th Anniversary 25-26 August - 06/03/12|
On behalf of Mother Raphaela, the Board of Trustees, and the 35th Anniversary Planning Committee, it is our joy to invite you to a milestone celebration for Holy Myrrhbearers Monastery in Otego NY. In addition to celebrating 35 years since the Monastery was established, this year marks the 40th anniversary of monastic life profession for Mother Raphaela and 50th anniversary of monastic life profession for Mother Michaela. May God grant them many years!
info letter & reservation form >>>
|Feast-day of Holy Pentecost - 06/01/12|
Bishop Michael has issued a letter to the faithful for the celebration of Pentecost on Sunday, 3 June. In part, Bishop Michael writes: "Having received the gift of the Holy Spirit, granted to the Apostles on that first Pentecost and given to us at our Chrismation, let us re-affirm our faith in the Triune God and express it ever more perfectly daily in His Holy Orthodox Church. Let us fulfill our destiny, growing ever closer to Christ, living more and more like the Saints, becoming more and more like God -- true sons and daughters of the Father, through the grace of the Holy Spirit. Truly, He is the promise of Christ fulfilled for us on this day." All of Bishop Michael's archpastoral letters are available HERE.
read the Archpastoral Letter >>>
read the Archpastoral Letter in Spanish >>>
|Congratulations: Diaconal Formation Program! - 05/31/12|
Nine Diocesan Diaconal Formation Program students walked in solemn procession during the commencement ceremony on 26 May at Saint Tikhon’s Orthodox Theological Seminary (South Canaan PA). The students had successfully completed a two-year/4 semester course of study that challenged them intellectually, spiritually, and ... to be sure ... tested their diligence and perseverance in attending day-long sessions every Saturday of the academic year at the Endicott NY campus. Congratulations to the Class of 2012 receiving the Certificate in Diaconal Formation: Gregory Aidinov ~ Ilya Arnopolskiy ~ Mark Bohush ~ David Chow ~ Sean McNulty ~ Symeon Peet ~ Michael Pylypciw ~ Gregory White ~ Theodore Gregory (attended the Philadelphia PA campus).
|60th Wedding Anniversary: Father John & Matushka Eugenia - 05/30/12|
On Sunday, 20 May, Archpriest John and Matushka Eugenia Nehrebecki celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary [22 May] at Christ the Saviour Church in Paramus NJ. His Grace, Bishop Michael, celebrated the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy assisted by Father John, Father David Vernak, Father Stephen Vernak, and Deacon Paul Sokol. The Choir was directed by Theodora Gramkow. His Grace preached and extolled the virtues of the couple’s marriage, especially their faithful life and labors in the Church.
|Archpriest John Klingel Receives Jeweled Cross - 05/29/12|
On Sunday, 27 May, Bishop Michael graciously took time from his busy schedule surrounding the Saint Tikhon's Monastery Pilgrimage to visit Saint Andrew Parish (Dix Hills NY) and its faithful as they celebrated the 25th anniversary of Father John Klingel's ordination to the Holy Priesthood. At the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy, Bishop Michael formally awarded the jeweled cross -- a loving gift from several parishioners -- as well as the award of wearing the palitza to Father John. His Grace also tonsured faithful altar server and singer Chris Whitehorn to the rank of Reader.
|Lansing NY: Visit of Myrrh-streaming Icon - 05/28/12|
On Sunday evening, 27 May, the faithful of Holy Apostles Orthodox Church (Lansing NY) and representatives from at least eight other parishes in the area were witness to a miraculous night. The myrrhstreaming (Hawaiian) Iveron Icon of the Mother of God came for a visit. The icon’s caretaker, Reader Nectarios, traveled to the little mission parish and was met at the doors by Father James Worthington and altar servers. The icon was led in procession into church and the Akathist of the Theotokos’ Icon was sung. Over 45 people prayed as the Icon adorned the middle of the church.
|Commission on Liturgical Music: WEBSITE LAUNCHED! - 05/24/12|
The Diocesan Commission on Liturgical Music [CoLM] launched a new and impressive website on 24 May 2012. The website can be accessed and entered through a direct link on the diocesan website homepage. The result of a long and dedicated process, the website represents a "labor of love" on the part of CoLM co-chairs: Archpriest Daniel Skvir, Carol Wetmore, and Doreen Bartholomew. Check the website often for news, announcements, and updates.
read Release # 2012.13.1 >>>
visit the website >>>
|Saint Andrew's Camp: Camping Program Opens July 8 - 05/21/12|
Saint Andrew's Camp in Jewell NY is pleased to introduce and welcome Camp Director Paul McDonald, a returning counselor from the 2011 season and seminarian at Saint Tikhon's Seminary (South Canaan PA). The Saint Andrew's Camping season opens on July 8, 2012 with "Horse Week," and three subsequent weeks of Orthodox camping to follow. Join us and register your child (or yourself) today! For more information, please visit the Saint Andrew's Camp website registration page:
|Invitation: Memorial Day at Saint Tikhon’s Monastery - 05/16/12|
The Myrrh-streaming Icon of the Most Holy Theotokos from Hawaii will again visit Saint Tikhon’s Monastery on the Memorial Day weekend. Healings from cancer, demon possession and blindness have been attributed to the intercessions of the Mother of God through this Miraculous Myrrh-streaming Icon. NEW! schedule of visits by the Icon on the East Coast (May-June) >>>
|A Truly Festive Anniversary - 05/15/12|
The Second Anniversary Celebration of the consecration of Bishop Michael was a most joyful and inspiring gathering at Saints Peter and Paul Church, Jersey City NJ on Saturday, May 12th. His Grace was joined by twenty-four clergy and many faithful of the diocese for the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy with magnificent responses by the Spirit of Orthodoxy Choir under the direction of Aleksei V. Shipovalnikov.
|Bronxville NY: Diocesan Youth “Clean Up” the Chancery - 05/13/12|
On Saturday, 5 May, a dozen teens and adults from Holy Annunciation Church, Brick NJ; Holy Virgin Protection Cathedral, NYC; and Holy Trinity Church, Yonkers NY gathered at the headquarters of His Grace, Bishop Michael, and the Diocese of New York and New Jersey for a day of much-needed yard and grounds work.
|FOCA National Basketball, Bowling Tournament - 05/11/12|
His Grace, Bishop Michael of New York and New Jersey presided at the Sunday Divine Liturgy at Saints Peter and Paul Church in South River NJ on 6 May. He was assisted by seven priests (including the host pastor, Priest David Garretson), a protodeacon, subdeacons and 14 altar servers. Basil Kozak directed the parish choir, which was joined by tournament participants. His Grace spoke to the participants, saying in part: "Think about this for a moment: to sink a three-pointer on the court, you have to give up the basketball; to make a strike in bowling, you have to give up the ball. So too in life, to truly be a success – as a spouse or a parent or an Orthodox Christian – we have to give of ourselves, of our time and talent and treasure; we have to sacrifice our will, our wants, our ways for the other; we have to share sacrificial love for our family and our friends, for our Lord and His Church.” read the full article >
|NEW VIDEO: Sacrament of Baptism - 05/01/12|
As part of the “Lessons in Our Faith” video series, a new installment has been produced and published on the diocesan website. In this lesson, Bishop Michael discusses the Sacrament of Baptism in a clear and concise presentation that will be both instructive and helpful for Orthodox faithful and also for non-Orthodox “seekers” who desire to know more about the faith and practices of the Church. Upcoming lessons on the Sacrament of Chrismation and Infant Baptism will be produced in the near future.
visit “Lessons in Our Faith” >
|UPDATE: Diaconal Formation Program - 04/30/12|
The Diocesan Diaconal Formation Program will soon mark the successful completion of its second year (four academic semesters). Several students, enrolled from the inauguration of the program, have been or plan to be tonsured as readers or ordained as sub-deacons/deacons. The course of study encompasses two years (four semesters), meeting every Saturday of the academic year at the Endicott NY campus of the program accredited by Saint Tikhon’s Orthodox Theological Seminary. The third year of classes will begin in September with both returning (second year) students and new students from throughout the diocese. Those interested in the program should speak to their parish rector. NEW PHOTOS ADDED on May 1, 2012
|Bronxville NY: Diocesan Council Meeting on April 25th - 04/25/12|
The Diocesan Council (members listed here) gathered for a regular/monthly meeting at the Diocesan Center on Wednesday, 25 April 2012. Various matters effecting the life and administration of the diocese were discussed and, when required, decisions were taken. Notable was an update on the 2012 Distinguished Diocesan Benefactors [DDB] initiative which, thanks to the good-will and generosity of many, has received an excellent response to date. There is an expectation, and prayerful hope, for continued financial support during the rest of this year. DDB funds are having a significant impact on the ability of the diocese to support missions, seminarians, and existing parishes. The faithful of the diocese are asked to prayerfully consider their ability to participate as DDBs. Complete information and an on-line “donate now” feature is found HERE.
|PASCHA: Christ is Risen! Indeed, He is Risen! - 04/15/12|
"The Church wants us to become like the Beloved Disciple was after Pascha: to live richly in our spiritual life, communicating with the Lord every day in prayer, as John did in person; to grow in God’s Word, by reading what Saint John and the others wrote in the Scripture; to come intimately close to the Lord in the Eucharist, as we are directed in the discourse in John's Gospel; to live a lifestyle of moral purity and service to Christ, as did the only one of the Twelve to live to a ripe old age and die a natural death, the very last of the apostolic witnesses on earth; and, yes, to forever be reminded in our minds, be stirred in our hearts and be convinced in our souls of that good news of greatest joy -- 'Christ is Risen! Indeed He is Risen!'"
Read the Archpastoral Letter >
|Bishop Michael: Visit to Seminary on 7 April - 04/14/12|
In addition to the ordination of Father Seraphim Joa to the holy priesthood, Bishop Michael attended the Children's Concert on Lazarus Saturday at Saint Vladimir's Orthodox Theological Seminary (Crestwood NY). "We were incredibly honored to have Bishop Michael in attendance at this concert for the second year in a row," said Danielle Miller, director of the choirs. Mrs. Miller is a veteran music teacher, choral conductor, and church musician.
see the article with photos >
|Ordination to Priesthood: Father William Seraphim Joa - 04/07/12|
On Saturday, 7 April ~ "Lazarus Saturday" ~ Saint Vladimir's Seminary seminarian Deacon William Seraphim Joa was ordained to the Holy Priesthood by His Grace, Michael (Bishop of New York and the Diocese of New York and New Jersey). Father Seraphim is in his third year of the Master of Divinity program at Saint Vladimir’s. more information >
|Pearl River NY: Unction Service Celebrated on 3 April - 04/03/12|
Holy Transfiguration Church in Pearl River NY was the venue of the fifth annual service of the Holy Mystery of Unction, celebrated in full by seven priests, on Tuesday night, April 3rd, 2012.
|6th Week of Great Lent leads to PALM SUNDAY on April 8, 2012 - 04/02/12|
On the Sunday of Saint Mary of Egypt ~ 5th Sunday of Great Lent, 1 April 2012 ~ the Gospel reading focused our attention on what is to come: Now they were on the road, going up to Jerusalem, and Jesus was going before them; and they were amazed. And as they followed they were afraid. Then He took the twelve aside again and began to tell them the things that would happen to Him: "Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be betrayed to the chief priests and to the scribes; and they will condemn Him to death and deliver Him to the Gentiles; and they will mock Him, and scourge Him, and spit on Him, and kill Him. And the third day He will rise again." (Mark 10:32-34)
|NY State Capital District: Youth Retreat Tradition Continues - 03/31/12|
Children and adults from several Orthodox communities in the New York State Capital District and Saratoga County gathered for their annual Lenten Youth Retreat on Saturday, 31 March at Saint Basil’s Greek Orthodox Church in Troy NY. For more than fifteen years, with encouragement from the clergy of the Saint Andrew’s Brotherhood, families have participated together each year in this day of worship and fellowship.
|Brick NJ: Feast-day of the Annunciation - 03/25/12|
On Saturday and Sunday, 24-25 March, the faithful of Annunciation Church in Brick NJ welcomed His Grace, Bishop Michael, for the weekend celebration of their patronal feast-day. Many visitors from the New Jersey Deanery (OCA) and from other jurisdictions joined them for the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy on Sunday morning and the Mission Vespers service later that afternoon. "Many thanks," said Father Gary Breton (parish Rector), "to all who helped make this celebration bright and joyful!"
|Lessons in Our Faith: New Installment! - 03/23/12|
“Lessons in Our Faith” is a series of instructional videos produced by the Diocese of New York and New Jersey (Orthodox Church in America) featuring His Grace, Bishop Michael. In this installment, the topic is the Sacrament of Confession. Using his popular “7 Questions and 7 Answers” format, Bishop Michael discusses this subject in a concise and direct manner. The entire "Lessons in Our Faith" series is available through a special link on this homepage (see the icon to the right)! Or, simply click HERE.
|New Jersey Deanery: “Mission Vespers” at Mays Landing NJ - 03/22/12|
Priests from various parts of the New Jersey Deanery gathered together on Sunday, 18 March, for a “Mission Vespers Service” at the Mother of God Church in Mays Landing NJ. This parish is the southern-most Church in the Deanery; New Jersey is 180 miles in length, north to south. Priests from throughout the Deanery participated (some traveling 3.5 hours one way). Priest Boris Slootsky and his faithful parishioners hosted the event, followed by a Lenten meal.
|2012 Diocesan Altar Servers Retreat - 03/16/12|
“Being Called to Serve” was the theme of the Second Annual Diocesan Altar Server Retreat held 24-26 February 2012 as nearly 60 participants gathered with Bishop Michael at Saint Basil’s Academy in Garrison NY. Although the event occurred over the “Forgiveness Sunday” weekend heralding the beginning of Great Lent, it was a great turnout! Participants included 5 clergy, 9 adult chaperones, and over 45 altar servers from 16 parishes within the diocese. Altar servers had the opportunity to “meet up” with old friends from the retreat in 2011 and to make new friends with those attending the retreat for the first time.
|Sunday of Orthodoxy: Bishop Michael in Los Angeles CA - 03/08/12|
Each year, Orthodox Christians around Southern California break from their routine of worshiping in the Divine Liturgy at their regular churches to witness something special on the first Sunday of Great Lent. The canonical Orthodox Christian Bishops of the West Coast began the tradition of celebrating the Divine Liturgy together on this day in 2008 at Saint Sophia Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Los Angeles, California. Joining them this year was a brother from the east: His Grace, Bishop MICHAEL (Orthodox Church in America, Diocese of New York and New Jersey), who served as the retreat master for our clergy and faithful on the eve of the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy.
read more here >
|Sunday of Orthodoxy - 03/03/12|
The Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops of North and Central America has offered a letter to the faithful on the occasion of the "Sunday of Orthodoxy" (the 1st Sunday in Great Lent). In part, they write: "We exhort all the faithful to celebrate this Feast with special joy, and with a shared sense of our common Faith. The Assembly includes every canonical Orthodox presence in our region, and as such is a living icon of the varied traditions that have been carried to the New World by faithful Orthodox Christians from around the world. We encourage mutual celebrations and fellowship in the spirit of the Feast."
Read the Archpastoral Letter >
|Distinguished Diocesan Benefactors Appreciation Dinners - 03/01/12|
Three Appreciation Dinners were hosted by Bishop Michael to express gratitude to the 2011 DDBs, to provide them with specific details of how their support has brought forth much good fruit throughout the diocese, and to encourage them to continue as DDBs this year in their support of the diocese. A video presentation was shown at each dinner highlighting accomplishments within the diocese during 2011 made possible, in part or in full, thanks to DDBs.
|Fasting: 7 Questions and 7 Answers - 02/29/12|
With the season of Great Lent upon us, we are pleased to offer a new installment of “Lessons in Our Faith” in which Bishop Michael offers clear and concise teaching on the subject of fasting. There are currently three lessons on-line and each of these educational videos is also available in audio format, and a lesson outline may be printed. Use the “Lessons in Our Faith” icon on this homepage to enter the special section. Learn more about your faith, and share it with others!
download/read Release # 2012.3.1 >
visit "Lessons in Our Faith" >
|New Jersey Deanery: Lenten Services - 02/28/12|
The New Jersey Deanery has released a schedule of deanery-wide Lenten Vespers services for the season of Great Lent 2012. View the schedule of services >
|Archpastoral Letter: Great Lent 2012 - 02/21/12|
His Grace, Bishop Michael, has issued an archpastoral letter to the faithful of the diocese for the beginning of Great Lent on 27 February 2012. In part, he writes: "God gives us the chance to live life over again – a new direction, a new life, if we sincerely repent of our sins and turn to Him and His ways. But repentance is more than just feeling sorry for what we have done. It must be more – a genuine return to God; a complete about-face to His way of living."
download/read the Archpastoral Letter >
|Saint Andrew's Camp: Seeking Counselors & Volunteers - 02/13/12|
Saint Andrew’s Camp seeks talented Orthodox Christian adults/young adults, male and female, ages 18+ for staff positions & volunteer roles for the 2012 season. Volunteers come in many forms and in varying age groups. Parents may accompany their children during a week at camp and volunteer in the kitchen, with activities, and other projects. Retirees, young professionals, school teachers, clergy and seminarians also visit in volunteer capacities. The Counselor/Volunteer flyer is available HERE.
|NY State Deanery: Family Conference & Youth Retreat - 02/11/12|
The New York State Deanery conducted a Family Conference and Youth Retreat from 13 January (Friday) through 15 January (Sunday) at Greek Peak Resort near Cortland NY. Bishop Michael was present for the retreat program which was attended by over 100 participants. In keeping with His Grace's vision of expanding ministries within the diocese, the theme of the three-day retreat was: “Depending on God.”
|Alpha NJ: Archpastoral Visit - 02/10/12|
On the Sunday of the Publican and Pharisee (5 February), Bishop Michael made an archpastoral visit to Saint John the Baptist Orthodox Church in Alpha NJ. It was the second visit to the parish by His Grace as ruling Hierarch of the Diocese. Great Vespers was served on Saturday evening with the Litiya; after Vespers parishioners and their rector, Archpriest Bohdan Ostash, had a discussion with His Grace during a fellowship reception. On Sunday morning, the Divine Liturgy was celebrated followed by a home-cooked meal prepared by the parishioners as His Grace met with the faithful and answered their questions. Father Bohdan offered his gratitude to Bishop Michael, saying: “Thank-you, Vladyko, for your archpastoral guidance and inspiring words! May God grant you many years!"
|Assembly of Bishops: Statement on HHS Ruling - 02/08/12|
The Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops of North and Central America recently (2 Feb 2012) issued a formal "Record of Protest Against the Infringement of Religious Liberty by the Department of Health and Human Services." In part, the Assembly writes: "The First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution guarantees the free exercise of religion. This freedom is transgressed when a religious institution is required to pay for “contraceptive services” including abortion-inducing drugs and sterilization services that directly violate their religious convictions. Providing such services should not be regarded as mandated medical care. We, the Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops, call upon HHS Secretary Sebelius and the Obama Administration to rescind this unjust ruling and to respect the religious freedom guaranteed all Americans by the First Amendment."
read the entire Record of Protest >
|East Meadow NY: Youth Fellowship & Service - 02/07/12|
As part of ongoing efforts to strengthen the Orthodox Faith among its youth, the Church School Association of Holy Trinity Church (East Meadow NY) organized a fellowship and service get-together on Wednesday, 1 February 2012. Youth and teens of the parish gathered to roll beeswax candles and mount icon prints, followed by dinner and a Vigil service for the feast-day of the Meeting of Our Lord. As a service project, the youth prepared mounted icon prints of the Resurrection which will be placed in Paschal baskets for homebound parishioners. The baskets will be assembled by the youth on Lazarus Saturday and delivered to parishioners who are unable to make their own traditional foods for Pascha.
|“Axios! Axios! Axios!” - 02/03/12|
His Grace, Bishop Michael, celebrates the 39th anniversary of his ordination to the holy priesthood on Saturday, February 4th. We pray that our all-merciful Lord will grant peace, health, salvation, and furtherance in all good things to our Spiritual Shepherd and Archpastor. Eis polla eti despota! Many years!
|World Day of Orthodox Youth: February 2012 - 01/26/12|
With the blessing of Bishop Michael, we will celebrate the World Day of Orthodox Youth in our diocese throughout the month of February. The proposal for a World Day of Orthodox Youth was made by the XIV SYNDESMOS ("the World Fellowship of Orthodox Youth") General Assembly in June 1992, and has received the blessing of His All-Holiness (Ecumenical Patriarch) Bartholomew and the hierarchs of other local Orthodox Churches.
Department of Youth Ministry webpage >
|Lessons in Our Faith: NEW VIDEO! - 01/23/12|
The Diocese of New York and New Jersey presents this video ~~ "OUR TIME, TALENTS, and TREASURE" ~~ as part of its Lessons in Our Faith series. In this installment, Bishop Michael discusses an approach to Christian stewardship and the support of the local parish community. Please visit the Lessons in Our Faith section of this website often for upcoming lessons.
visit "Lessons in Our Faith" >
|"Jacob's Well" - Winter 2012 Issue Available On-Line! - 01/22/12|
"Jacob’s Well" is the official publication of the Diocese New York & New Jersey (Orthodox Church in America). It provides, as did the well in ancient communities, a place for the distribution of news and activities regarding the life of the Diocese and its parishes. It seeks to highlight functions sponsored in the areas of youth and liturgical music, and the efforts taking place throughout Diocesan missions. Of special interest is the presentation of iconographic examples from Diocesan parishes. But, like the story of the Samaritan woman at Jacob’s Well (John 4), it also seeks to be a vehicle which provides not just news but opportunities for reflection on the living encounter with Jesus Christ.
visit the "Jacob's Well" page >
|East Meadow NY: New Senior Program - 01/22/12|
Nearly a dozen senior members of Holy Trinity Orthodox Church (East Meadow NY) gathered for fellowship on Tuesday, 17 January 2012. They were served a home-cooked meal courtesy the parish’s Sisterhood organization, and spent a couple hours in fellowship playing games. The morning gathering was designed as a way to bring long-time members back together in a very familiar setting.
|Perth Amboy NJ: Theophany Celebrations on 19 January - 01/21/12|
The parishioners of Saint Spiridon Russian Orthodox Church in Perth Amboy NJ celebrated the feast of Holy Theophany on Thursday, 19 January, according to the “Old” Julian calendar. His Grace, Bishop Michael, spent two days worshiping with the faithful, and his presence and inspired words brought peace, joy and consolation to those attending the Grand Compline service on Wednesday evening and the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy ~ followed by the Great Blessing of Water ~ on Thursday morning.
|Brooklyn NY: “Old Calendar” Russian Christmas - 01/19/12|
This year, the Julian Calendar Christmas ~ 7 January ~ was celebrated at the Russian Orthodox Cathedral of the Transfiguration of Our Lord in Brooklyn NY. The parish rector (Very Reverend Wiaczeslaw Krawczuk) and faithful were blessed to welcome His Grace, Bishop Michael, who served the Nativity Vigil service on the eve of the feast-day and, following the service, joined church members for a traditional Russian “Holy Supper” in the church hall.
|2012 Distinguished Diocesan Benefactors - 01/09/12|
The 2012 Distinguished Diocesan Benefactors [DDB] program, an initiative designed to make the “Vision for Our Future” a reality, is now officially launched! Following an incredibly successful inaugural year in 2011, the DDB program has become a vital element in the life of our diocese by funding essential ministries such as mission parishes, seminarian education, and support for older parishes that may be struggling. The details, and an invitation for your participation, are available in the “Vision for Future” section of this website.
Go to “Vision for Future!” >>>
|Dix Hills NY: Theophany Celebrations - 01/08/12|
Saint Andrew Church in Dix Hills NY was blessed with a visit on January 5- 6 by Bishop Michael for the celebration of Holy Theophany. The visit began Thursday evening with festal Great Vespers and the Great Blessing of Water, and continued Friday with the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy and a festive meal.
|Orthodox Books for Children by Elizabeth Johnson - 01/05/12|
We have an accomplished author of Orthodox books for children residing in our diocese. Elizabeth Crispina Johnson lives in Naples NY and is a faithful member of Saint John the Baptist Orthodox Church, Rochester NY. In an interview available here (in 2 parts, audio), Elizabeth discusses her inspiration and motivations in authoring books that are intended to deepen the faith of Orthodox children through a growing experience with God and His Church.
|Watervliet NY: Feast-Day Celebration with Bishop Michael - 01/04/12|
Saint Basil's Orthodox Church in Watervliet (Maplewood) NY celebrated its Patronal Feast-day of Saint Basil the Great on January 01, 2012. Starting with the Vigil on Saturday evening and continuing with the Hierarchal Divine Liturgy celebrated on Sunday by His Grace, Bishop Michael, the faithful of Saint Basil's parish celebrated the joyous occasion.
|New Feature: "Lessons in Our Faith" - 01/01/12|
We are pleased to present a new feature on our website! "Lessons in Our Faith" is a series of video presentations offered by His Grace, Bishop Michael. In these videos, His Grace will explore matters of faith, belief, and practice within the Orthodox Church. They are intended to provide the faithful with much-needed information, guidance on their spiritual journey, and assistance in answering questions that may arise from non-Orthodox friends or acquaintances. The first of these lessons ~ "The Theotokos: 7 Questions and 7 Answers" ~ is now available, and more lessons are planned for the future. A special "icon" linking to this section will be permanently displayed on the homepage (see the logo to the right).
go to "Lessons in Our Faith" >
download/read Release # 2011.42.1 >
On the Diocesan Calendar
June 1, 2013
to College Ministry"
New York NY
June 2, 2013
Spirit of Orthodoxy
June 8, 2013
Parish Council Conference
NY City Deanery
St. Andrew Church
Dix Hills NY
10:00 a.m.- 3:00 p.m.
details & info >
to College Ministry"
June 11, 2013
Diocesan Council Meeting
June 15, 2013
Parish Council Conference
Holy Resurrection Church
10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
details & info >
June 22, 2013
Parish Council Conference
NY State Deanery
Ss. Peter & Paul Church
10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
details & info >
July 12-14, 2013
College Student Retreat
Saint Basil Academy
info & details >
August 3, 2013
Church School Teachers
& Sexual Misconduct
NY State Deanery
St. Basil Church
August 10, 2013
Church School Teachers
& Sexual Misconduct
NY City Deanery
Holy Trinity Church
August 17, 2013
Church School Teachers
& Sexual Misconduct
Holy Resurrection Church
August 18, 2013
NY State Deanery
Clergy Family Picnic
August 24, 2013
Saint Andrew's Camp
Annual Bicycle Ride
September 5, 2013
Annual Clergy Conference
"Ministry to the Elderly"
7-Hour Continuing Education
Assumption of the Virgin Church
9:00 am - 5:00 pm.
November 12-13, 2013
Holy Trinity Church
5-Hour Continuing Education
"Sexual Misconduct Policy"
Diocese of New York-New Jersey
33 Hewitt Avenue
Bronxville, NY 10708
914-779-6581 (Fax) firstname.lastname@example.org