On November 13, 2022, with deep gratitude to God, the Orthodox Church in America celebrates the 10th anniversary of His Beatitude Metropolitan Tikhon as Primate of the Orthodox Church in America.
The celebrations begin on November 12 with the night vigil at Saint Tikhon Monastery Church followed by a concert for His Beatitude at Saint Stephen’s Pro-Cathedral, Wilkes-Barre, PA where a new piece will be performed in his honor.
On Sunday, November 13, His Beatitude will preside over the celebration of a divine synodal liturgy at the monastery church of Saint Tikhon. The anniversary celebrations will end later in the afternoon with a private banquet. Joining His Beatitude will be the members of the Holy Synod of Bishops, the staff of the Chancellery, representatives of stavropegial institutions and monasteries, as well as family members and personal friends of His Beatitude.
Her Beatitude was born in Boston, MA on July 15, 1966 to François and Elizabeth Mollard. His family settled in Reading, Pennsylvania after living for a time in Connecticut, France and Missouri. He graduated from Wyomissing High School in 1984 and later enrolled at Franklin and Marshall College, Lancaster, PA, earning a degree in French and sociology.
In 1989 he was received into the Orthodox Church and began his studies at Saint Tikhon Orthodox Theological Seminary. Soon he became a novice at Saint Tikhon Monastery in Zadonsk and graduated with a master’s degree in theology in 1993. His Beatitude was later appointed an Old Testament instructor at Saint Tikhon and served as a lecturer in Old Testament. In addition, he worked in other capacities at school, including working with His Eminence Archbishop Alexander (Golitzine), who was an Igoumene at the time, to publish The Living Witness of the Holy Mountain.
In 1995 His Beatitude was tonsured in the Small Scheme with the name Tikhon, in honor of St Tikhon Patriarch of Moscow and Illuminator of North America. Later the same year he was ordained to the holy diaconate and to the priesthood. In 1998, he was elevated to the rank of igumene and in 2000 to archimandrite.
He was elected to the episcopate by the Holy Synod of Bishops in 2003 and consecrated bishop in 2004, after which he served as auxiliary to the Metropolitan. In 2005, he was elected to lead the Diocese of Philadelphia and Eastern Pennsylvania and was installed as the ruling hierarch at St Stephen’s Cathedral, Philadelphia, PA. He served the diocese as bishop and then archbishop until his election as Primate of the Orthodox Church in America at the 17th All-American Council, Parma, OH on November 13, 2012. His Beatitude was enthroned in as Metropolitan of All America and Canada on January 27, 2013.
On September 14, 2015, His Beatitude received the degree of Doctor of Theology, honoris causa, by Saint Vladimir Orthodox Theological Seminary.
On June 29, 2018, His Beatitude published a 60-page document entitled “What life are we talking about? Four Pillars for Carrying Out the Apostolic Work of the Church” in preparation for the 19th Pan American Council, St. Louis, MO. This document defined four areas of the Orthodox tradition – spiritual life, stewardship, relationship with others, and outreach and evangelism – and related them to the life of the Church and its people in the face of the challenges of 21st century.
Under his care and pastoral guidance, His Beatitude brought much-needed stability and after a number of years of turmoil to the Orthodox Church in America.
During his tenure as Metropolitan, he presided over the gathering of three All-American Councils in Atlanta, GA, St. Louis, MO, and Baltimore, MD. At the 18th All-American Council in 2015, His Beatitude oversaw a major update to the OCA Status.
In 2020, the historic decision was taken to move forward with the relocation of the offices of the Primate and the Chancellery to the canonical territory of the Archdiocese of Washington. His Beatitude oversaw this relocation effort which has now placed him geographically within his diocese to better serve the people and the church at large.
During his primacy, His Beatitude made thirteen official visits abroad to the various Orthodox Churches, including trips to Russia, Constantinople, India and Rome to attend the enthronement of Pope Francis.
His Beatitude has also made countless pastoral visits to the various dioceses of the Orthodox Church in America and its parishes in the United States, Canada and Mexico. Likewise, he participated in many pilgrimages such as the Saint Herman pilgrimage in Alaska and the Memorial Day pilgrimages to the monastery of Saint Tikhon.
On behalf of the hierarchs, clergy, monks and faithful of the Orthodox Church in America, we thank His Beatitude for his first decade of loving service in the service of Christ’s holy Church. The tireless work of His Beatitude during his first ten years as Primate built the Orthodox Church in America, and we look forward to the future under his leadership. We pray that Our Lord will continue to bless the archpastoral ministry with His Beatitude and ask that God grant him many years!
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