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Carpatho-Russian Orthodox will ordain install 5th bishop

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  • Nina Tkachuk Dimas
      http://tribune-democrat.com/features/x983004605/Carpatho-Russian-Orthodox-will-ordain-install-fifth-bishop  November 21, 2012 Carpatho-Russian Orthodox
    Message 1 of 1 , Nov 21, 2012

       November 21, 2012
      Carpatho-Russian Orthodox will ordain, install fifth bishop
      TOM LAVIS TLAVIS@... The
      Wed Nov 21, 2012, 01:00 AM EST
      JOHNSTOWN — The Right Rev. Gregory Tatsis, who is to be consecrated as the
      fifth bishop of the American Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Diocese of the USA, said
      he finds Johnstown to his liking.

      His ordination and installation will be
      held at 10 a.m. Tuesday at Christ the Saviour Cathedral, 300 Garfield St.,

      He replaces Metropolitan Nicholas Smisko, who died of cancer
      in March 2011.

      Prior to being elected bishop in July, Tatsis visited
      Johnstown and was impressed by the mountains. They reminded him of the Blue
      Ridge Mountains and the mountain towns in his native North Carolina.

      love mountains and the things I found in Johnstown impressed me,” Tatsis said in
      a telephone interview from New Orleans, where he is dean of Holy Trinity Greek
      Orthodox Cathedral in New Orleans and vicar of the Western Conference of

      “I visited and discovered the cathedral, administrative
      building, the seminary and a residence were within a block of each

      While he is eager to begin his new duties, Tatsis’ path to the
      priesthood was a long one.

      “As a teenager, I got a calling to the
      priesthood,” he said.

      As he matured, he was torn between theology and

      He is a 1981 graduate of the University of North Carolina at
      Chapel Hill and a 1989 graduate of the University of North Carolina.

      wanted to be a doctor,” he said. “I earned a bachelor’s degree in biology, but
      failed three times to be admitted to medical school.”

      His conclusion: “I
      don’t think God wants me to be a doctor.”

      He worked for 21 years in
      cardiovascular research at the Carolinas Medical Center in

      “Through the years, I stayed close to the church,” he

      In his youth, he was an altar server, and later taught Sunday
      school for 13 years and served n leadership roles, including parish council

      After taking part in two mission trips to Alaska, he could no
      longer ignore God’s calling.

      “As I served the needs of about 100
      villagers, all of whom were Eskimos, I felt close to God,” he

      “After my second mission, I knew I wanted to be a

      He left is secular job in 2003 after clearing research projects
      and ensuring everyone in his department got another job.

      Tatsis entered
      Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology in Brookline, Mass., and graduated
      in 2006 with a master’s degree of divinity. He was ordained a priest at
      Annunciation Orthodox Church in Atlanta in 2007.

      He has no regrets about
      waiting decades to become a priest.

      “As a scientist, I know about the
      physical aspects of the heart, and as a priest, I’m now dedicated to the
      spiritual aspects of the heart,” he said.

      Following the Liturgy, it will
      conclude with the installation of the new bishop.

      The celebrant and
      ordaining bishop is Archbishop Demetrios of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of
      America. He represents Patriarch Bartholomew of

      Co-consecrators will be Archbishop Antony of the
      Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the USA, Metropolitan Alexios of Atlanta and
      Metropolitan Savvas of Pittsburgh.

      Other Orthodox hierarchs are expected
      to attend, including Bishop Daniel of the Ukrainian Orthodox

      Ecumenical guests expected to attend are Bishop Mark L. Bartchak
      and Bishop emeritus Joseph V. Adamec of the Altoona-Johnstown Roman Catholic
      Diocese; Bishop Gregory R. Pile of the Allegheny Synod of the Evangelical
      Lutheran Church in America; Metropolitan Archbishop William Skurla of the
      Byzantine Catholic Archeparchy of Pittsburgh; and Bishop emeritus Basil Losten
      of the Ukrainian Catholic Diocese of Stamford.

      Liturgical responses will
      be sung by the congregation in the traditional plainchant led by a group of a
      hundred diocesan priests and deacons, in addition to choral responses provided
      by Christ the Saviour Cathedral choir, directed by Helen Spanovich.

      banquet will be held at 2:30 p.m. at the Pasquerilla Conference Center, 301
      Napoleon St., Johnstown. The banquet will be preceded by a social hour at

      Tatsis will oversee 81 parishes in 13 states and

      “For 18 months, the diocese has been without a shepherd,” he

      “But it remained unified under the leadership of Father (Frank)
      Miloro and six other priests of the consistory who held things

      Tatsis said during the interim without a bishop was a perfect
      opportunity for the “viper of evil to strike.”

      “But the faithful unified
      and remained close to the church,” he


      What: Ordination of the Right Rev.
      Gregory Tatsis as fifth bishop of American Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Diocese of
      the USA.

      Where: Christ the Saviour Cathedral, 300 Garfield St. in the
      West End section of Johnstown.

      When: 10 a.m. Tuesday.


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