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Bp. John' Visit & Dn. Joshua's Ordination at St. Innocent - 11/12/16

On Saturday, November 12, 2016, His Grace, Bishop John made his first Archpastoral visit and presided at a Hierarchal Divine Liturgy at St. Innocent Church in Redford, MI, of which Mitered Archpriest Roman Star is Pastor, and Fr. Daneil Shirak is the assistant priest. Concelebrating with His Grace were 8 priests and 2 deacons of the Central States Deanery, (of which Fr. Roman is the Dean), plus 3 priests of the OCA Bulgarian and Albanian dioceses, plus the bishop’s own priest and deacon assistants, for a total of 15 clergy, plus the diaconal candidate. Joining them were 2 experienced subdeacons and 4 youth altar-servers from a nearby ROCOR parish, plus an experienced Reader-Server priest’s son from a MI Patriarchal Parish.

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During the Divine Liturgy, Subdeacon Joshua Genig was ordained to the Diaconate, to serve at St. Innocent Parish. Fr. Dn. Joshua had been a Lutheran minister for 7 years before becoming Orthodox with his wife and 4 children, 3 years ago. He has an M.Div. seminary degree and Ph.D. and teaches at a local Catholic seminary, from which 5 of his colleagues, plus 5 of his seminarian students, and the Monseigneur Rector-Chancellor of the seminary and associated schools attended, and were warmly and respectfully welcomed by His Grace.

Also during the Divine Liturgy, Victor Cardarelli, a life-long member of Nativity of Christ Church in Youngstown, Ohio, was tonsured a Reader, to serve at his parish. His priest and three friends also came from Youngstown for the occasion.

An excellent choir of local church singers beautifully sang the responses, led by St. Innocent’s choir director, Elizabeth Star Hatfield.

After the Divine Service, a delicious festive dinner, prepared by parishioners, was served in the church hall in celebration of the wonderful day.

It was a marvelous, prayerful, peaceful, beautiful gathering, appreciated by all, where St. Innocent parishioners were joined by many members of Fr. Dn. Joshua and Matushka Abigail’s Lutheran families, his Roman Catholic colleagues and students, and by many Orthodox clergy and friends of St. Innocent Church and of Fr. Joshua, who all enjoyed the prayerful worship and fellowship, and the opportunity to rejoice with Fr. Dn. Joshua on this joyful occasion of his ordination, and the first visit of our Archpastor, Vladyka John.

Note: Since we have no video, but only photos, we attempted to document as fully as possible the experience of being present by showing many photos (rather than just a few "snap-shots"), especially showing the bishop's vesting and Deacon's Ordination and other action up-close, that are difficult or impossible to see from the pews. Also, almost everyone present is depicted in the hall, and most parisioners when receiving Holy Communion and kissing the cross. There are also group photos of the clergy and Fr. Dn. Joshua's family. Hope you enjoy this photo-slide-show, whether or not you were physically present.

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The following clergy & servers participated: In the Central States Deanery: From St. Innocent, Redford, MI: Mitered Archpriest Roman Star, Pastor & Dean of the Central States Deanery, Priest Daneil Shirak & Dn. Michael Comerford. From Archangel St. Michael, Redford, MI: Mitered Archpriest Timothy Barna & Dn. Daniel Woytowich. From St. Elias, Battle Creek, MI: Archpriest Lawrence Bacik & Reader Alex Bacik. From St. Andrew's, East Lansing, MI: Priest Christopher Rozdilski. From St. John Chrysostom, Grand Rapids, MI: Priest James Anthony. From Nativity of Christ, Youngstown, Ohio: Priest Michael Lillie & Victor Cardarelli, who was Tonsured a Reader. Formerly from Dormition Church, Benld, IL: Archpriest Paul Waters, retired. Plus, from St. Nicholas Cathedral in NYC: Igumen Nikodim & Dn. Mark.
From St. Nicholas OCA Bulgarian, Burton/Flint, MI: Priest Matthew-Peter Butrie & Priest Esteban Julio Vasquez.
From St. Thomas OCA Albanian, Farmington Hills, MI: Archpriest Dimitrie Vincent.
From St. Vladimir ROCOR, Dexter/Ann Arbor, MI: Subdeacon Methodius & his 4 sons, & Subdeacon Andrew.

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