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 Gift and Grace:

The Spiritual Legacy of Orthodox Christians in America


     Stories can help us understand the formation of individuals, communities, and our Faith. They can teach, change, and perhaps even save us. They can bring into focus and clarify the key moments of our lives. Getting older, I find myself more interested in knowing about the paths of those who have come before me. My friend Father John Jillions and I returned home late one night considering the life of a priest whose funeral we had just attended and how little we had known about him prior to that service. We committed ourselves to visiting and learning more about the older priests around us. Sometimes we had just our memories or a pad of paper that documented our conversations, but on other occasions we brought a tape recorder or even a video camera. Thanks to a class on "Inter-generational Storytelling" offered by WHYY (my local public broadcasting station in Philadelphia) I was stimulated to think about this project in a new and more organized way. With encouragement from Bishop Michael and diocesan funding, I went to the WHYY studios with Father Serge and Faith Kuharsky to begin what I hoped would be a prototype of this effort to document the lives of our senior clergy and their wives.

     I hope as well this may encourage similar oral history projects within our parishes. We know our seniors represent a unique and irreplaceable treasury of knowledge and experience, and of witness a kind of "martyria" of love and dedication to God, pastoral work, and love. Let's all commit to this effort of documenting and learning from the lives of those who have served our Church with such energy, clergy and lay people, married and those who are single. During our current times of suspicion and cynicism it's important to be reminded of those stories around us that have led "to a further, more complete, more total service of Christ and his Church." The stories are out there!

 ~ Father John Shimchick




Father Thomas

and Anne



Golden Wedding Anniversary

 on Ancient Faith Radio




 Father Sergei


(audio – 1989)

On the Diocesan Calendar


September 29-30, 2018

"Harvest Festival"

Holy Spirit Church

Wantage NJ

details >


October 6, 2018




        Carrying on the

 Vocation of the Apostles"

  Joy of All Who Sorrow

      Orthodox Church

        Princeton NJ

        6:00 p.m.

        event flyer >


October 13, 2018

Music Workshop:

"for Readers, Part II"

   St. Vladimir's Seminary

   Crestwood NY

   registration >


October 20, 2018

Saint Andrew's Camp

  Annual Open

    Meeting and

      Planning Session

    Saints Peter & Paul Church

   South River NJ

   12:30 p.m.


October 30-31, 2018




   Annunciation Church

   Brick NJ

    details & lodging >


November 3, 2018

First Annual

"Bible Bowl"

Holy Trinity Church

Yonkers NY

10:00 a.m.

details & registration >

practice questions >


November 9-11, 2018




    Saint Basil Academy

    Garrison NY

    register on-line >


November 21, 2018

Feast-Day of the

Entrance of the

Theotokos into

the Temple


December 3, 2018

Council of

Presbyters Meeting


December 25, 2018

  Feast Day of the

  Nativity of Our

  Lord, God, and Savior

  Jesus Christ


Diocese of New York

and New Jersey
33 Hewitt Avenue
Bronxville NY 10708
914-779-6580 (Phone)
914-779-6581 (Fax)

Diocese of New York-New Jersey; 33 Hewitt Avenue; Bronxville, NY 10708; 914-779-6580

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