Author Topic: New Archbishop for ROACA  (Read 1662 times)

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Offline Bishop Paul Andrew

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New Archbishop for ROACA
« on: June 22, 2006, 09:06:50 PM »
New Bishop for ROAC consecrated in Suzdal
By decision of the Synod of Bishops of the Russian Orthodox
(Autonomous) Church, taken on May 13/26, 2006, (Protocol
#54)Archimandrite Andrei (Maklakov), rector of St. Nicholas Church in
New Jersey (USA) was chosen to become the Bishop of Pavlovsk, Vicar
Bishop of the Suzdal Diocese. Archimandrite Andrei?s consecration to
the episcopate was performed on June 8/21, 2006.
Fr. Igumen Andrei?s candidacy (Maklakov) was originally put forth by
the American clergy of the ROAC in 2004. At the Synod of Bishops
meeting on December 13/26, 2004, it was resolved that Fr. Andrei should
be considered a candidate for the episcopacy and that his biography and
that this recommendation together with his biography should be sent to
all of the bishops for their response.
During his visit to the USA in December of 2005, Metropolitan Valentine
elevated Fr. Igumen Andrei (Maklakov) to the rank of Archimandrite.
This action was approved by the Synod of Bishops during their meeting
of May 13/26, 2006.
Metropolitan Valentine of Suzdal and Vladimir, First Hierarch of the
ROAC, presided at the all-night vigil held in the Tsar Constantine
Cathedral for St. Theodore, the first Bishop of Suzdal and Enlightner
of the entire Suzdal region. Concelebrating with him were the Secretary
of the Synod of Bishops, Archbishop Theodore of Borisovsk and of
Otradnaya, and His Grace Irinarkh of Tula and of Bryansk, together with
a large number of clergy from the Suzdal Deanery as well as clergy who
came in from other cities throughout Russia. Following the dismissal at
the First Hour, in the center of the church, the Order of Election to
the Episcopacy was performed. The next morning, following the blessing
of water, the akathist to St. Theodore, and the Hours, Archimandrite
Andrei, Bishop elect for the see of Pavlovsk, made his confession of
faith before the Gospel and the Cross, pronounced his oath and
hierarchical vows to be loyal to the holy Canons of the Church, to the
First Hierarch and the Sobor of Bishops in all things, even if the
people or the powers that be in this world should require him to
After the little entrance and the singing of the thrice holy hymn,
Archimandrite Andrei was consecrated as Bishop of the see of Pavlovsk.
The consecration was performed by Metropolitan Valentine of Suzdal and
of Vladimir, Archbishop Theodore of Borisovsk and of Otradnaya, and by
Bishop Irinarkh of Tula and of Bryansk. The newly consecrated bishop
partook of the Holy Mysteries of Christ from one chalice together with
the rest of the clergy, and then received their congratulations.
Following the end of the Divine Liturgy, His Eminence Metropolitan
Valentine handed the bishop?s crozier?the symbol of episcopal
authority?to the newly consecrated Hierarch, and told him that God
had been preparing Fr. Andrei for this moment for a long time, testing
his patience, humility and loyalty to the Holy Church, and the dogmas
and Canons of Orthodoxy, through many and various temptations. His
service included time spent in Rome and in Denmark. Vladyka briefly
described Vladyka Andrei?s life journey, and cautioned him that,
above all, a bishop should not be a scandal  for anyone, and should not
lead anyone into the sin of judging, but should lead his flock along
the path of Christ, swerving neither to the left nor to the right.
Vladyka Andrei will be mainly performing his archpastoral service in
the USA, tending to the True Orthodox Christians of the Russian Church.
Then, the First Hierarch warmly congratulated His Eminence Archbishop
Theodore on the occasion of his nameday, noting his selfless service to
the Holy Orthodox Church, his zeal in beautifying the churches, and
praised him as his tireless helper and support. As a sign of their
spiritual unity, humility and love, Vladyka Metropolitan gave
Archbishop Theodore a large prosphora in honor of all the Saints of
Metropolitan Valentine also congratulated the parishioners of the
cathedral, and all of the faithful residing in the God-saved city of
Suzdal on the occasion of there being a new hierarch in the Russian
Church. He also thanked all of the guests, who came in order to
celebrate the feast and to take part in the episcopal consecration
through their prayers.
Afterwards, all present were invited to a banquet held in the church
next door to the cathedral, which has been arranged as a trapeza. After
the banquet was ended, Bishop Andrei conversed with the parishioners
and answered a multitude of questions. Vladyka said that he is an
American himself, who has lived for more than thirty years amongst the
Russian Orthodox diaspora. He was ordained to the priesthood in the
ROCOR by St. Metropolitan Philaret, and that he had been under the
spiritual tutelage of His Eminence Archbishop Andrei (Rimarenko) of
Rockland, who himself was a spiritual son of the last Optina elder
Nektary. Vladyka explained that in America, his flock is not large, but
that at the present time there is a split taking place in the ROCOR,
and that many people, priests and lay people alike who do not want to
join the MP, do not know where to go. Many of them are casting an eye
in the direction of our Church since it has kept the essence of
Orthodoxy and continues to hold on to the best traditions of the ROCOR.
?Unfortunately,? said Vladyka Andrei, ?the most important thing
for many in the ROCOR has been the keeping of their ?Russianness,?
and not their Orthodox Faith. Four years ago, the so-called Patriarch
Alexis sent a letter to the Bishops of the ROCOR, in which he said that
without us, i.e. without the MP, you can certainly be Orthodox, but you
can?t remain Russian for long. But for us, for believing people, the
most important thing is not to be Russian, but to be Orthodox. We do
not believe in and worship Russia, but we worship Jesus Christ, Who
spared not His own Jewish nation, spared not the Roman empire, nor the
Byzantine empire, and will not spare Russia either, if it does not keep
the True Faith. For us, what is important is to be Russian Orthodox,
with the emphasis on the Orthodox part, rather than to be Russian, but
  ?Many in the diaspora,? continued Vladyka Andrei, ?fail to
understand what is going on inside Russia at the present moment, and
think that the massive effort to rebuild churches and regild their
domes is a sign of a genuine religious renaissance in Russia and
amongst the Russian people. Many are not aware that there are still
catacomb Christians in Russia, who never for a moment belonged to the
MP, or else belonged in ignorance. These people have remained unbroken
by the difficulties that they experienced, have remained loyal to the
Canons and the dogmas of the Faith, have striven to keep their faith
and their consciences pure, and never stained them by joinging with the
false church, which is the MP. And having come to Suzdal, I can now say
that I am convinced that this is so.?
  ?In America, we have absolute freedom of religion; this is one of
the founding principles upon which our government was established, and
therefore it is impossible that there should be any kind of
governmental force, which weighs upon our conscience there. We are
deeply in awe at the experience of your Faith, here in Russia,
pressured as it is by the state authorities and their sanctioned church
authorities in turn, which you have had to endure in order to preserve
your spiritual freedom. Of course, the American authorities understand
that the MP represents a ?church of spies,? and that just as
earlier it served the purposes of the Soviet government, so now it
serves the interests of Putin?s government. But the government in the
US does not understand our church matters well enough that they could
defend the Church Abroad, or Her canonical and dogmatic purity.?