Fr. Demetrius' mother was a German countess and was raised Catholic, but both his parents were non-religious until his mother had a conversion experience in 1786 and Fr. Demetrius joined her in 1787. Interesting side note, Catherine the Great was his godmother. So while nominally Orthodox he is not a conversion in the same sense as St. Alexis. Although he did share in troubles with trustees, as St. Alexis did, and my Greatx4 Grandfather assisted him.
"One of his first challenges as a newly ordained priest was to counter rampant trusteeism, the practice of placing a parish in the hands of a board of parishioners, or trustees, many of whom were not even Catholic. These groups controlled the parish, separated themselves from other parishioners, and operated the parish as a profit making organization, with the proceeds frequently going to themselves. Father Gallitzin rejected this aberrant practice as foreign to Catholicism, and properly insisted on his rights and responsibilities as pastor.
As Father Gallitzin traveled to his assignments he sometimes encountered the severe anti-Catholicism still rampant in the new country of the United States. He faced threats of personal physical violence, even from dissident Catholics unhappy with the determination of his ministry. On one occasion an angry mob of malcontents launched a Ã¢â‚¬Å“murderous attackÃ¢â‚¬Â upon him but he was rescued by a Ã¢â‚¬Å“mountain of a man,Ã¢â‚¬Â a passerby named John Weakland. Despite the opposition, Gallitzin was undeterred in his work."
This occasion is commerated in stained glass at St. Jospeh's Church:http://www.rootsweb.com/~pacambri/cems/WCaHarts/p000d.html
Fr. Deacon Lance