Posts Tagged ‘Diocese of the South’

The Search Begins For a New Bishop

August 13, 2009

OCA Diocese of the South

The website for the Diocese of the South is reporting the news that Metropolitan Jonah has taken the first big step in the search for a new Bishop for the Diocese.  Metropolitan Jonah has been acting as locum tenens i.e. temporary caretaker (Latin, “one holding a place”) since our beloved Archbishop Dmitri retired in the Spring. 

August 12.   With the blessing of His Beatitude, Metropolitan Jonah, Locum Tenens of the Diocese of the South (‘DOS’), an Episcopal Search Committee has been established. The Committee was approved at the recently concluded DOS Assembly in Atlanta.

The Search Committee will consist of the DOS deans and the chancellor of the Diocese. Members of the Committee include, Archpriest Philip Reese, Archpriest Peter Smith, Archpriest Ted Pisarchuk, Priest Stephen Freeman, Priest Marcus Burch, Priest Seraphim Hisph and Archpriest Joseph Fester.

The Episcopal Search Committee is scheduled to hold their first meeting in early September.

I’m sure there’s going to be lots of idle speculation, rumors and blatthering from the peanut gallery.  The priests that have been selected are well-known and respected, not just for their administrative skills, but for their spirituality and love of the Church.  

The best we can do is to pray for them and the hard work they’re undertaking.  Filling the shoes of Archbishop Dmitri is going to be difficult but with the guidance of the Holy Spirit I believe they will find worthy candidates. 

Archbishop Dmitri Announces His Retirement

March 22, 2009


The faithful of the Diocese of the South of the Orthodox Church in America were shocked today by Archbishop Dmitri Royster’s announcement of his resignation from the active episcopate effective March 31st. 

Vladyka Dmitri has been the only Archbishop many of us have known in the Diocese of the South and we could never have had a more godly example of Christian leadership and pastoral care.   I remember many visits he made to my parish over the last 17 years and what impressed me so many times was the care he took to make every moment of his short visits an opportunity for teaching the faithful.    I won’t also forget his look of sheer enjoyment when we celebrated special events with a mariachi serenade; if there is ever someone who could be described as having a ‘twinkle in their eye’, Vladyka Dmitri always fit the description.

What a shocking day but not unexpected.  The demands of serving in the episcopacy without a break for forty years would wear anyone out.  God grant you peace and serenity in your well-deserved retirement Vladyka.  We can only hope that you’ll have time to keep writing and instructing us in the Orthodox faith.

The Writings of Metropolitan Jonah

November 17, 2008

Metropolitan Jonah’s writings prior to his consecration are well known in the quarterly journal Divine Ascent published by St. John of San Francisco Monastery, and reflect the same spiritual depth that were evident in his speeches at the All American Council.  The Diocese of the South  had gathered several essays prior to his consecration as Auxiliary Bishop and they are accessible here.   I particularly loved his reminisces on a trip back to Valaam Monastery.  It made me feel like I was a part of his spiritual journey.