Of course they could draw from other ranks (like Ukranian)...
Like Metropolitan Nicholas was.
Archbishop Demetrios have been chosen for a locum temens.
Actually, +Metropolitan Nicholas was chosen by the Ukrainians from the ranks of the Carpatho-Russian Diocese. He was a graduate of Christ the Saviour Seminary in Johnstown, ordained by +Metropolitan Orestes and served a number of parishes including St. Nicholas in New York City and as abbot of a monastery all within ACROD prior to his selection as Bishop in 1983.
Metropolitan Nicholas wanted to be made Bishop John's Auxiliary Bishop. The diocese at the time said no and in typical Nicholas fashion he walked out on ACROD and went to the Ukrainians. Then when Bishop John passed suddenly, he all of a sudden came back to ACROD. It would've been much better for the church if Fr. Dahulich would have won the election rather than Nicholas.
That is a harsh and uncharitable assessment of the past. What was ,was.
One has to trust in the Holy Spirit and God's providence. I am content to remember the late Metropolitan as a good pastor, a good friend of my family and a man who did many good things as Priest and Bishop including the construction of the beautiful church at Camp Nazareth in the Carpathian mountain style (my avatar), his efforts to heal the long festering wounds within the American Rusyn community caused by the unia, his efforts in securing medical supplies, school supplies and funding for the Orthodox sponsored orphanage in Medzilaborce, Slovakia and the regional medical center and hospital in Uzhorod, Transcarpathian Ukraine and for his profound love for and complete knowledge of Rusyn chant. I daresay that within North America, there was no one, Orthodox or Greek Catholic, who had a broader knowledge of and love for all of the tones, podobens, special lenten chants and the hymnology than did His Eminence. With his passing, and that of my father several years ago, those who love 'prosto' are at a loss and we have to work all the much harder to keep alive the chant tradition of my people so that all Orthodox faithful can come to appreciate it and utilize in the new North American tradition of the Church.
Was he perfect? That question answers itself and is absurd to ask during a time of mourning. Let the historians of the Church assess his time as Bishop in the decades to come. For now, we mourn his passing.
I am also a life long friend of Bishop Michael and wish him well in his ministry within the OCA. The OCA and the Orthodox Church as a whole are blessed to have him as a Bishop. He is wise and compassionate. But, it should be noted that during the time frame you are referencing, then Fr. Michael was in his early thirties. As I said, believe in the Church, trust in the Holy Spirit and move on.
No one can proclaim ones self to be perfect, we are all mortal. After all, we are charged that unless we are without sin, we are not to cast the first stone.
"Well done, good and faithful servant, Bishop and Priest Nicholas, enter into the realm where there is neither pain, sorrow nor mourning. Vicnaja Jemu Pamjat!"
Just a couple of questions for you:
1) Do you remember the last time that Metropolitan Nicholas visited any of the churches in the Midwest, especially Indiana and Illinois? I remember when St. Michael's had their 90th anniversary in 2004 before he was sick, he was no where to be found because he was attending the Plain Chant conference with Bishop Vsevelod in Uzohrod. What does it say in the Diocesan by-laws about visiting churches?
2) As far as someone who had as much love (I would say more) and understanding of Prostopinje I would say Archbishop JOB of blessed memory. I sang in his St. Alexis Men's choir which sang paraklisis music written in Prostopinije style by Vladyka Job.
3) Lets ask a couple of other things..... How did Metropolitan Nicholas handle Fr. Dahulich leaving for the OCA? How did he handle the release request when Fr. Matthias left?
4) Why is it that Christ the Savior seminary can't get more than 4 students for a school year?
5) Why is it that whenever St. Michael's in Binghampton said "jump" the diocese said, "How high?" Is it because they were the largest church in the diocese and the Metropolitan would be afraid to lose them?
IMHO he was average at best as a ruling hierarch and he was able to play politics as well as any clergyman I've met.
I don't want to get into a back and forth with you on this subject, but the way you phrased your response leaves me with little choice. From the tone of your posts I am surmising that you left ACROD at some point following the death of Bishop John during +Met. Nicholas' tenure. If I am wrong on that, I apologize.
First of all, I stated that the late Metropolitan was not perfect. I alluded to the writing of future church histories and in such, if asked by a future author, I would feel more comfortable in making a candid assessment of his service to the Church.
Second, I am not part of the chancery and I am not familiar with his pastoral visitation schedule. The geographic scope of his diocese, in spite of the small size of its population, often made travel difficult as he did not like to drive himself for long distances. Since it was said by many that his predecessor ignored his own health by being unable to cut back on travel, well, you can't win if you are a bishop or priest.
Third, I made no comments about +Archbishop Job and his well known love for and efforts to perpetuate the traditions of our mutual Rusyn cultural heritage. Your comment was small and uncalled for. My friend, Fr. Matthias will have his hands full following a truly popular and hard working bishop as +Metropolitan Nicholas learned in Johnstown.
Fourth, as to now-Bishop Michael's reception into the OCA, I will be the first to state here that it is well known in both OCA and ACROD circles that my family supported Bishop Michael back in 1984 and that he was like a son to my father. However, when the choice was made at the Diocesan Council to put forward Bishop Nicholas' name for ruling hierarch, my father recognized that carrying on about it was inappropriate and hurtful to the Church at large. He and Bishop Nicholas were friends before the election and remained friends after the election. It should be said that not all of Father Michael's supporters were as gracious and accepting of the will of the Holy Spirit. Are there two sides to every story? Of course there are. As I have said over and over again, I am glad that Bishop Michael is my friend and I am sure that the OCA is a better institution having him on its Synod. Do I wish at this time that he could be my bishop? I can't answer that as that is not possible and such speculation is harmful to the Church. People come to the fork in the road and life takes them down the choice they make. Things are what they are.
Fifth, be charitable as to the circumstances regarding Fr. Matthias' departure. The Metropolitan was apparently gravely ill at that time and trying not to let the extent of his illness be widely known. Any interregnum period has problems, the Church is hardly unique in that regard.
Fifth, enrollment varies from time to time in a Seminary and ACROD has a relatively small population base from which vocations may come. The size of enrollment is hardly indicative of the quality of the product any seminary produces as has been argued by others on many threads about many seminaries.
Sixth, my home parish produced fourteen vocations to the clergy during my father's thirty year pastorate. One of them is Bishop Michael, another is the Archdeacon at the OCA cathedral in New York. Yes, the parish was large and yes, from time to time its size merited more attention than did some other parishes. Part of that was size, and part of that was the relationship between the pastors and the bishops. That phenomena is true in ANY Orthodox jurisdiction in this country, including the OCA. If you think that is not true, you are looking through rose colored glasses, my friend.
Public criticism of priests and bishops is sometimes appropriate, but there are jurisdictions in this country that apparently believe it is a dogma and have made the same an art form. Sorry for that last comment but in the end, the Church will prevail.
I will try not to say anything further on this subject as I join with most of the American Orthodoxy community and mourn the passing of my bishop.