Marblehead Orthodox church celebrates 100 years
Toledo Blade, Ohio
Article published Saturday, October 7, 2006
Marblehead Orthodox church celebrates 100 years of history
By DAVID YONKE
BLADE RELIGION EDITOR
Holy Assumption Orthodox Church in Marblehead will celebrate the 100th
anniversary of its consecration with special services today and tomorrow.
The church itself was founded in 1898 and is the second-oldest Orthodox
Church in Ohio, said the Rev. David Lis, pastor. The congregation
originally met in the Marblehead Congregational Church and members dug the
foundation of the new facility by hand.
The Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church instructed Bishop Tikhon
now Saint Tikhon to bless the church cornerstone, consecrate the temple,
and conduct the first services in the new building in 1906.
It is a small parish church built by parishioners from stone from the
stone quarry right here, Father David said.
The church, like most traditional Orthodox churches, had no pews when it
was built but they have been added, he said. The church usually has 30 to
40 people at its Sunday services, and can seat 65 people easily.
On Pascha, or Easter, 81 people attended the service in Holy Assumption,
the pastor said. It was packed. We couldnt get any more people in here if
Metropolitan Theodosius, now living in retirement in Pennsylvania, and
Archbishop Job, of Chicago, will preside at the consecration of the altar
this weekend by putting relics inside the wooden liturgical furniture,
Father David said.
The relics will be of St. Ignatius of Ubleczna, a Polish saint who was
martyred by the Nazis, and one of St. Tikhon that will be brought to
Marblehead by Metropolitan Theodosius.
Father David, 56, is a native Toledoan and a graduate of Central Catholic
High School and Orchard Lake Seminary in Michigan.
He was ordained a Roman Catholic priest in the Toledo diocese, left the
priesthood, and eventually was ordained in the Orthodox Church. He said it
was a 14-year journey that led him to the Orthodox Church.
When the late Rev. Raphael Biernacki invited him to attend a liturgy at St.
George Orthodox Church on Oswald Street in Toledo, the moment I walked
into that church ... I knew I was home, Father David said. After the
liturgy, I said, Dear brother, where do I sign?
The vespers service will be at 6 tonight and the divine liturgy at 9:30
a.m. tomorrow at Holy Assumption Orthodox Church, 114 Main St., Marblehead.
Information: 419-798-4591 or online at www.holyassumptionmarblehead.org.