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Montréal, QC, Canada: Archbishop Irénée celebrates 40th Anniversary of ordination to the priesthood

Archbishop Irénée addresses faithful after anniversary Liturgy.

Montréal’s Saints Peter and Paul Cathedral was filled to capacity on Sunday, August 12, 2018, as His Eminence, Archbishop Irénée was honored on the 40th Anniversary of his ordination to the priesthood.

Clergy and faithful from across the Archdiocese of Canada gathered for the celebration of the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy, after which a festive reception was held.

Born in Montréal on December 25, 1948, Bishop Irénée received a BA in Slavic Studies from the University of Ottawa in 1971, after which he began studies at Holy Trinity Seminary, Jordanville, NY.  He was accepted as a novice at Holy Trinity Monastery and placed under the spiritual guidance of Archimandrite Kiprian.  In 1974, he was tonsured a rassophore monk.  The following year, he was tonsured a stavrophore monk with the name Irénée, in honor of the sainted hieromartyr of Lyons.

In 1978, he was blessed to serve in France.  In May of the same year, he was ordained to the diaconate in Brussels, Belgium, and in August to the priesthood in Geneva, Switzerland.  He continued to serve in France until 1982, at which time he returned to Canada to serve Montréal’s French mission.  He and the mission’s faithful were received into the OCA in 1986.

In 1992, he was elevated to the dignity of Igumen and assigned to care for the French speaking monastics in Québec.  He also served as a supply priest to the parishes in Montréal, Ottawa, Toronto and Québec City.

In April 2009, the Holy Synod of the Orthodox Church in America elevated him to the dignity of Archimandrite and elected him as an Auxiliary Bishop in the Archdiocese of Canada with the title of Bishop of Québec City.  In October 2009, ten bishops participated in his consecration to the episcopacy at Ottawa’s Annunciation Cathedral.  On October 1, 2010, the Holy Synod appointed Bishop Irénée as Administrator of the Archdiocese of Canada.  He was elected Bishop of Ottawa and Canada in October 2014 and was enthroned the following month.  In March 2015 he was elevated to the dignity of Archbishop.

Hawaii: Archbishop Benjamin visits weather-weary Hawaiian missions

Holy Ascension Mission faithful meet in 100-year-old church building.

In the span of just a few months, the residents of Hawaii’s Big Island have faced two major forces of nature: the Kilauea volcano and Hurricane Lane.  In early May, the Kilauea volcano spewed lava and ash across its East Rift Zone, destroying infrastructure and hundreds of homes, displacing thousands of residents and injuring more than 20 people.  At the end of August, Hurricane Lane soaked the island with more than 50 inches of rain, making it the second wettest tropical cyclone in the United States since 1950.  The storm flooded homes and washed out roads, mostly on the east side of the Big Island.

Archbishop Benjamin celebrates Divine Liturgy at Holy Ascension Mission.

Braving the unusual climactic conditions, His Eminence, Archbishop Benjamin visited Holy Ascension Mission in Honomu—one of two Diocese of the West missions on located on opposite ends of the Big Island—during the last weekend of August 2018.  The mission’s faithful meet in a 100-year-old church built in the once thriving sugar cane boom town.  While many local roads were impassable due to landslides, the structure was not affected by the torrential rains, and the faithful were able to welcome Archbishop Benjamin, who celebrated the Sunday Divine Liturgy.

By the time he returned to the mainland, “things had settled down and the air quality, which had been an issue, had improved immensely,” Archbishop Benjamin said.  “At least one family from Holy Ascension Mission lost their home in the volcanic eruption.

“Archpriest John Schroedel and his family, who have been serving the missions for several years, are leaving the Big Island and I am looking for a priest to assign there,” said Archbishop Benjamin, who plans to visit the missions once again during the third weekend of September.

Anchorage, AK:  Fr. John Zabinko relocates to “Lower 48” after four decades of ministry in Alaska

Bishop David and local clergy bid farewell to Fr. John and Matushka Maggie Zabinko.

After 40 years of dedicated ministry in the Diocese of Alaska, Archpriest John and Matushka Maggie Zabinko and their son Matthew are relocating to the “Lower 48.”

“Father John first came to Alaska on the Feast of the Dormition 40 years ago; now, he and his family are leaving Alaska on the same feast,” said His Grace, Bishop David.  “Father John met Matushka Maggie here in Alaska, and after their marriage, they lived most of their ministry serving the people of Alaska.”

Father John taught music at Saint Herman’s Seminary, Kodiak, AK, and served as pastor of Three Saints Church in Old Harbor, Holy Resurrection Cathedral in Kodiak, and Saint Michael Cathedral in Sitka, and as dean of Saint Innocent Cathedral in Anchorage.

Prayers for Fr. John are offered by Bishop David and local clergy.

“In December 2017, Father John suffered a severe stroke that disabled his entire left side, and while everyone in Alaska was praying for his recovery, the Lord gave him another path,” Bishop David explained.  “After several setbacks, he and his family decided that it would be better if they could live somewhere with more options for treatment.  Earlier, their son Matthew had purchased a home in Madison, IL, and now it appears that that purchase was all part of God’s plan for Father John as he and his family now will be located near Matushka Maggie’s family.”

After the Dormition Divine Liturgy at Saint Innocent Cathedral, Anchorage, AK, a Molieben was celebrated by Bishop David and area clergy, after which Father John was encouraged to continue his service to God in Madison and trust that the Lord was giving him a new mission field in which to serve Him.

Frackville, PA:  Fr. James Jadick awarded Retired Military Service Cross

Archbishop Mark with Fr. James and Matushka Natalie Jadick.

On Sunday, July 29, the faithful of Holy Ascension Church Frackville, PA honored their pastor, Archpriest James Jadick, who was awarded the Retired Military Service Cross on behalf of His Beatitude, Metropolitan Tikhon and the Holy Synod of Bishops by His Eminence, Archbishop Mark, following the celebration of the Divine Liturgy.

The Primatial Award is presented to Orthodox clergy who have served in the United States Armed Forces as military chaplains in the Active Duty, Reserve Component or National Guard in recognition of exemplary and honorable service.  A number of other retired chaplains also received similar crosses during the 19th All-American Council July 23-27, 2018.

Detroit, MI:  New Pan-Orthodox charity to support Detroit’s needy, Orthodox radio program


A Pan-Orthodox Christian charity, Outreach Detroit Foundation [ODF], was recently established to help finance Detroit’s Own Orthodox Radio Program [DOOR] on WNZK AM 690 and other Orthodox charities dedicated to serving the poor in metropolitan Detroit.

“ODF’s mission is to support Orthodox charities serving metropolitan Detroit through fellowship and charitable, educational and outreach programs that inspire and improve lives,” ODF’s founder and president, Richard J. Shebib, said.  “We serve by living our Ancient Faith in the modern world, loving and caring for one another in our great city.”

A 501(c)(3) charity, ODF also supports Fresh Start Detroit, which identifies and assists homeless men and women who seek to improve their well-being and living conditions by providing them with basic necessities such as food, clothing and personal hygiene items.

For further information, contact Mr. Shebib at 248-345-9346 or