- PROTODEACON JOSEPH AND MATUSHKA IRINA JAROSTCHUK.
On the 20th February 2021, our dearly beloved Father Joseph and Matushka Irina will be relocating to Boston, Massachusetts, where they will live together with their son, Reader Ilia. How does one sum up in a few words, or sentences or even a paragraph the lives of this wonderful clerical couple who have touched the lives of countless amounts of people over the last six decades? It is very difficult because of their love and volumes of good works which they accomplished in the Vineyard of Christ, both in our parish, within the Church as a whole and even globally within other Orthodox countries and other parts of the world. We speak of Fr. Joseph’s diaconal service for 52 years, his 60 plus years in
our St. John of Kronstadt Memorial Fund, his travels to Russia and other parts of the world to where he helped to bring relief to the poor and needy through our Memorial Fund, and his love and accessibility on a personal level with
all who have had the privilege of encountering him, church, parish, business or social level. He has touched all these lives, and ours, in a most positive way. Matushka Irina has not only been a very active member of our parish, but has also been the wonderful helpmate and supporter of Fr. Joseph, raising a family together, most of whom serve the Church as clergy, choir directors and members, or in other capacities. Whenever Fr. Joseph or Matushka Ira are mentioned here or within our church circles as a whole, the reaction is always one of love and respect toward them. When both were very ill last year with the Covid, the entire Russian Orthodox Church prayed for their recovery.
Fr. Joseph and Matushka will always be a wonderful example for us of Orthodox faith and piety. We are sad to see them leave us to the point where one feels a sense of being orphaned yet at the same time we realize that this is God’s Will, and that they will always be an essential and wonderful part of our lives. Even with tears in our eyes, we ask
Our Saviour to bless them in their new location and to always be with them. From the bottom of our hearts, we
express our gratitude and thanks for all they have done for us and the Holy Church!
On Sunday 14th February 2021, his Grace, Bishop Luke of Syracuse, led the Divine Liturgy at our parish at the end of which Fr. Protodeacon Joseph was presented with a benedition gramota from our Synod of Bishops in recognition and appreciation for many years, decades of sercice to the Church, our parish and to the St. John of Kronstadt Memorial Fund. Fr. Michael, parish rector, presented Fr. Joseph and Matushka Irina two icons, one of the Our Lord's Resurrection and the other of the Most Holy Mother of God as Abbess of the Holy Mount Athos, expressing gratitude and outlining their many years of service to the Church, as well as expressing well wishes on behalf of the parish. Svetlana Derevenets, parish council member and member of the board administration of our Memorial Fund, presented them with a very beautiful collage of photos outlining Fr. Joseph's years of diaconal service, which she, Svetlana, gathered from various parishioners, and family sources, and which her family helped to put together as a wonderful expression of appreciation from our parish. Tatiana Naumenko, member of our parish sisterhood, presented a bouquet of flowers to Matushka Irina. Bishop Luke also expressed well wishes on behalf of the fathers and brethren of Holy Trinity Monastery, Jordanville, NY, in which he emphasized Fr. Joseph's piety and dedication in his diaconal service, in our parish and in the Monastery. In fact, Vladika Luke commented that while many in the monastery would struggle with attending and serving at the monastery's many divine services, Fr. Joseph woul always be among the first to be at them and serve the divine services, especially during the first week of Great Lent and other feastdays. Fr. Joseph expressed his gratitude for the touching tribute to him and his matushka, saying that they will always be close to our parish, and Godwilling, visit on occasion. Following the sing of many years to Fr. Joseph and Matushka Irina, a festive meal was held in their honor, at which more best wishes and reminisances were offered. Parish Treasurer Tamara DeBernardis remarked how over her 59 years of singing in the choir, Fr. Joseph had been a teacher to her, especially over the last 14 years when she had to learn in depth the divine service rubrics to lead services on the cliros. Fr. Deacon Michael Pavuk remembered his first visit to our parish 27 years ago with his future Matushka Maria when they came for the occasion of Fr. Joseph's 25th diaconal anniversary, and others offered other memories and good wishes. During these festivities, Fr. Joseph also led us in some favorite Russian folk songs. To sum up this day, one may say it was truly joyful, yet very moving.
On the next day, the Great Feastday of the Meeting of the Lord, Fr. Michael and Fr. Joseph concelebrated the Divine Liturgy. Svetlana took some wonderful photos and beautifully summarized that last liturgy.;
"It was another bittersweet day yesterday...
We said GoodBye to our amazing and irreplaceable Fr.Joseph and Matushka Irina.
We Thank them again and again for everything this wonderful couple and their family did for our Parish, the people in Utica and to many others around the world.
We also Thank All of You for helping us to make their special days in Utica brighter!
God bless our amazing Fr.Joseph and the whole Jarostchuk Family!
And God bless each of you, dear friends!"
Fr, Michael further remarked that it is the nature of the Holy Eucharest which keeps us all close together no matter the physical distances between people. One felt a sense of festive joy and peace at the conclusion of the day.
God bless Fr. Joseph and Matushka Irina with many more years!
ПРОТОДИАКОН ОТЕЦ ИОСИФ И МАТУШКА ИРИНА ЯРОЩУК.
Очень скоро, в ближайшие пару недель наши горячо любимые отец Иосиф и матушка Ирина собираются переехать в Бостон, штат Массачусетс, где они будут жить вместе со своим сыном, Чтецом Ильей. Можем ли мы в нескольких словах, предложениях или даже абзацах хоть в как-то сумировать жизнь этой замечательной пары, которая смогла прикоснуться к жизням бесчисленного количества людей за последние шесть десятилетий? Глядя на их любовь ко всем и учитывая количество добрых дел, которые они совершили
во имя Христа, как в нашем приходе, так и для Церкви в целом, и даже более глобально, во многих православных странах и других частях мира, сделать это практически невозможно. Мы вспоминаем о 52-х годах диаконского служения о.Иосифа, его 60-и с лишним лет службы в нашем Благотворительном фонде
св. Иоанна Кронштадтского, его путешествиях в Россию и другие части мира, где он помогал бедным и нуждающимся через наш Благотворительный фонд и дарил свою любовь и доброту всем, кто имел честь встретиться с ним в церкви, в приходах, по работе или просто в жизни. Он коснулся жизней многих людей,
в том числе и наших, самым положительным образом. Матушка Ирина также была не только очень актив-
ным членом нашего прихода, но и замечательной помощницей о. Иосифа, с которым они вместе воспитали замечательных детей и внуков, большая часть которых служат Церкви в качестве духовенства, руководите-
лей и членов хора или имеют другие обязанности. И где бы мы не вспомнили или не заговорили бы об
о. Иосифе и матушке Ирине, в церковных кругах или просто среди знакомых, реакция всегда одна, - любовь
и уважение к ним. А когда в прошлом году они оба сильно заболели Ковидом, вся православная Церковь молилась об их выздоровлении.
Отец Иосиф и матушка Ирина будут всегда для нас прекрасным примером православной веры и благочестия.
Нам очень грустно осознавать, что они оставляют нас. Мы как будто бы ощущаем себя сиротами, но в то же
время мы понимаем, что это Воля Божья, и что они навсегда останутся очень важной и яркой частью
нашей жизни. Со слезами на глазах мы просим Спасителя благословить их на новом месте и всегда быть
рядом с ними. Мы от всего сердца выражаем признательность и огромную благодарность этим замечатель-
ным людям за все, что они сделали для нас и Святой Церкви!
Дай Бог им здоровья на многая лета!
It is with sadness that we learned of the repose of the Very Reverend Mitred-Archpriest Fr. Nikolai Belyaev on the 12th January 2021, following 2 months of illness with the coronavirus. Fr. Nikolai was the founder of our Sv. Ioannovskaya Semya (the St. John of Kronstadt Family of parishes, monasteries and institutions named in honor of him) of which we are a part since its founding in 2009. Fr. Nikolai touched the lives of people, young and all in a profound spiritual way, bringing many souls to the Church, helping them in their spiritual lives. He will always be remembered as a gentle, loving and caring pastor who made time for his immense flock and the faithful of the parish and monastic communities he tended to. Fr. Michael had the honor of serving with him during the 25th Anniversary of the Glorification of St. John of Kronstadt in Russia as well as spending some time with this devout pastor. Our parish treasurer, Tamara DeBernardis also encountered Fr. Nikolai on the same pilgrimage in 2015 as well as numerous members of our clergy and faithful who joined in in these festive celebrations of our saint's canonization. Our heartfelt condolences go out to his Matushka Svetlana, his children and grandchildren and to all the Reverend Fathers, Brothers and Sisters, and all the members of the St. John of Kronstadt Family. May Our Saviour reward this selfless and tireless servant who has faithfully labored in His vineyard! Vechnaya Pamyat! Memory Eternal!
Pannykhidas were served on the 1st and 3rd days of Fr. Nikolai's blessed repose, and we shall perpetually remeber him in our prayers and commemorations.