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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


March 22, 2018

 NY State Deanery

 Clergy Lenten Retreat

 and Meeting

Saints Peter & Paul Church

Syracuse NY

10:00 am


March 25, 2018

   The Annunciation to

   the Holy Theotokos


April 1, 2018

Palm Sunday


April 8, 2018



   The Resurrection of

   Our Lord, God, and

   Savior, Jesus Christ


May 17, 2018

Feast-Day of the

Ascension of

Our Lord


May 27, 2018

   Holy Pentecost

The Descent of

the Holy Spirit


August 6, 2018

Feast-Day of the

Transgfiguration of

Our Lord


August 15, 2018

Feast-Day of the

Dormition of

the Theotokos


September 8, 2018

Feast-Day of the

Nativity of

the Theotokos


September 14, 2018

   The Exaltation of the

   Life-Creating Cross


November 21, 2018

Feast-Day of the

Entrance of the

Theotokos into

the Temple


December 25, 2018

  Feast Day of the

  Nativity of Our

  Lord, God, and Savior

  Jesus Christ


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

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