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Three New Diocesan Bishops Consecrated for the Self-Ruled Antiochian Orthodox Archdiocese of North America









December 6, 2004 –

Englewood, New Jersey




Three New Diocesan Bishops Consecrated for the Self-Ruled Antiochian Orthodox Archdiocese of

North America




Over the weekend of December 3rd through 5th, 2004, three new diocesan bishops were consecrated for the Self-Ruled Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of

North America.  The consecrations took place in the Patriarchal Cathedral in Damascus, Syria, and were presided over by His Beatitude IGNATIUS IV, Patriarch of Antioch and All of the East.




The three new diocesan bishops, and their dioceses are as follows:




His Grace, THOMAS (Joseph), Bishop of

Pittsburgh and the Diocese


of the East.




His Grace, MARK (Maymon), Bishop of

Toledo and the Diocese


of the





His Grace ALEXANDER (Mufarrij), Bishop of

Ottawa and the Diocese


of Eastern Canada and Upstate

New York.




These consecrations are an important step in the implementation of the Self-rule status that was granted to this Archdiocese by the Resolution of the Holy Synod of Antioch which was approved on October 9th, 2003, and signed by every member of the Holy Synod.  Subsequent to that resolution, the General Assembly of the Archdiocese met in a Special Convention in

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on July 16th, 2004, and unanimously approved an amended Constitution that specifies the detailed implementation of the Self-rule status, including the procedure for the election, consecration, and enthronement of diocesan bishops.  At that same Special Convention, the General Assembly nominated, from a list of eligible clergymen, those candidates who would stand for election as diocesan bishops.  The three new bishops were elected by the Local Synod of this Archdiocese as its duly convened meeting in Naples, Florida, on October 29th, 2004.




The three new bishops will assume their diocesan responsibilities effective January 1st, 2005, and they will be enthroned in their respective Cathedrals some time after that date.  The first enthronement of a diocesan bishop under self-rule status occurred on September 12th, 2004, when His Grace JOSEPH, Bishop of Los Angeles and the Diocese of the West was enthroned by His Eminence Metropolitan PHILIP at St. Nicholas Cathedral in

Los Angeles, California.  The enthronement of His Grace BASIL, Bishop of Wichita and the Diocese of Mid-America is scheduled to be held on Wednesday, December 15th, 2004, at St. George Cathedral, Wichita, Kansas, and His Eminence Metropolitan PHILIP will preside.  The enthronement of His Grace ANTOUN, Bishop of Miami and the Diocese of the Southeast is being scheduled.




It is clear that the Holy Spirit is working in a powerful way as the Antiochian Orthodox Archdiocese in

North America makes these historic strides to implement self-rule.




We wish to express our heartfelt thanks to Our Father in Christ, Patriarch IGNATIUS IV, and the members of the Holy Synod of Antioch for their continuing support of the North American Archdiocese.  In addition, we thank our Metropolitan PHILIP for his vision and untiring leadership which inspires us to greater works for the Glory of God. We pray that our Lord will guide and protect Bishop THOMAS, Bishop MARK, and Bishop ALEXANDER as they assume their positions as shepherds of their dioceses.  We pray that God will grant them all Many Years!


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