On Sunday, December 12, Archpriest Emil Minkovich, rector of Sts. Peter & Paul Church in Elizabeth, NJ celebrated his 55th anniversary of ordination to the priesthood. Joining Fr. Emil on this day was the Chancellor of the Patriarchal Parishes in the USA, Archpriest Igor Vyzhanov who celebrated the Divine Liturgy.
Concelebrating with him was the Vice-Chancellor of the Patriarchal Parishes, Priest Mark Rashkov and the Dean of the Eastern States Parishes, Priest Julian Ryabtsev. As the clergy received communion, Father Julian offered the Sunday Gospel sermon.
After the Divine Liturgy, Fr Igor welcomed the clergy and the congregation and especially congratulated Fr Emil with this noteworthy anniversary. Furthermore, by the Blessing of His Holiness, Kyrill, Patriarch of Moscow and all Russia, and on behalf of His Grace, Bishop Matthew, the Interim Administrator of the Patriarchal Parishes in the USA, Fr. Igor presented Fr. Emil with the order of St Seraphim of Sarov, second class. Fr. Igor wished Fr. Emil many more healthy and fruitful years of service.
In addition, with the blessing of His Grace, Bishop Matthew, Natalia Ramirez, Jana Jansone, & Kristina Brummett were presented with Archpastoral Gramotas in recognition of their diligent labors for the benefit of the parish.
The celebrations continued in the church hall where Fr Emil’s relatives and the parishioners of the parish organized a festive meal in honor of Fr. Emil’s anniversary.
Fr. Emil, the most senior ranking priest of the Patriarchal Parishes in the USA was ordained a priest on September 27th, 1967 by Bishop Dosithius (Ivancehnko). Since then, Fr Emil has faithfully served the Russian Orthodox Church as a former dean of the Eastern States Parishes, a long-time member and Secretary of the Bishop’s Council, co-editor of the journal “One Church”, and rector of Sts. Peter and Paul Church in Elizabeth, NJ since it was consecrated in 1967 by Metropolitan John (Wendland), Patriarchal Exarch of North and South America and the Aleutian Islands.
The Clergy and Faithful of the Patriarchal Parishes thank Fr Emil for his many years of service and wish him many healthy and joyous years to come!