St Herman's Orthodox Church

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WELCOME TO ST HERMAN'S!

Fr Paul & Presbytera (
Fr Paul & Presbytera ("Mother" Nancy) Wesche
Fr Paul & Presbytera ("Mother" Nancy) Wesche
Chrismation of Catechumens
Chrismation of Catechumens
Chrismation of Catechumens
On Pilgrimage to Holy Dormition Monastery, Michigan, Aug 2013
On Pilgrimage to Holy Dormition Monastery, Michigan, Aug 2013
On Pilgrimage to Holy Dormition Monastery, Michigan, Aug 2013
Welcome

Fr Paul and Presbytera ("Mother" Nancy) and the parishioners of St Herman's welcome you. Most of our parishioners are converts to Orthodoxy themselves - including Fr Paul and Nancy. No doubt, this is one reason why the faithful of St Herman's Orthodox Church are known for their hospitality to visitors, especially to those who are coming to see what Orthodoxy is all about. Another reason is that those of our members who come from the "old country" and whose family roots were baptized into the Orthodox Christian Faith generations ago understand the evangelical Spirit of the Orthodox Christian Faith. They know that Providence has called them to transfigure the circumstances of their family's immigration to the US one or more generations ago into an occasion to become "apostles" of Christ's Holy Church: those "sent out" by the Church to bring the spiritual riches and heavenly beauty of the Orthodox Faith to America. That means teaching us the spiritual wisdom of the "startsi", the "wise old men", of the "old country" and guiding us in the Orthodox way of evangelism revealed on the Feast of Pentecost. That is the way of proclaiming the faith in all languages, so that the biblical worship in Spirit and in Truth is made accessible to all. Apostleship to America, therefore, means proclaiming and serving the faith in the language of the American people, English.

And so, all the faithful of St Herman's love to show hospitality to visitors because they want visitors to know that Orthodoxy is for all peoples and that all are invited to:

Come and see! (Jn 1:46)

St Herman's Orthodox Church is located in the Lake Nokomis neighborhood of South Minneapolis. We are on the corner of 38th Ave south and 54th street.

Mittel European Fund-Raising Dinner!

Come join us for a scrumptuous dinner of Czechoslovakian Goulash: beef marinated in spices and herbs over spaetzel noodles, with delicious side dishes and desserts. Suggested dinner donation is $10 per plate. Nifty raffle prizes will be given out as well: $5 for one ticket, $25 for 6. 

It all happens following 5 pm Great Vespers on Saturday, November 1. We set our clocks back that night. We'll have an extra hour to relax and enjoy a delicious meal with great fellowship!

St Herman's Story

St Herman's began as the first mission parish of the Orthodox Church in America (OCA) in Minnesota in 1976, six years after the Moscow Patriarch had granted autocephaly (self-governance) to its parishes - the Metropolia - of North America. The parish was founded in the vision of the OCA: to become an expression of an American Orthodox Church and to make Orthodoxy accessible to the American people by serving in English.

For sixteen years, the parish had several temporary homes until 1992, when the parishioners purchased the building of their present location, a former Lutheran Church in South Minneapolis. For the first time, St Herman's had a permanent address on the corner of 38th Ave So and 54th St. The building was in need of extensive repair; but over the years, the parishioners have made significant improvements and renovations in an effort to render the building, as much as possible, into an icon of the Kingdom of Heaven. The organ was sold; an open space was established in the nave, and an iconostasis erected to create a sanctuary.

In 1998, St Herman's was recognized by Archbishop Job no longer as a "mission" but as an established parish. However, the faithful of St Herman's understand that Orthodoxy at its heart is missionary, evangelical. Our goal is to be faithful disciples of Christ, to grow in the Spirit of Christ, that our parish may be a faithful witness to the saving beauty and life-creating riches of Christ's Holy Church, his crucified and risen body, the fullness of Him who is all in all.

Fr Paul's Story

Fr John Meyendorff with the newly ordained Deacon Paul and his wife Nancy: March 25, 1988, outside Three Hierarchs Chapel at St. Vladimir's Seminary in Crestwood, NY.
Fr John Meyendorff with the newly ordained Deacon Paul and his wife Nancy: March 25, 1988, outside Three Hierarchs Chapel at St. Vladimir's Seminary in Crestwood, NY.
Fr John Meyendorff with the newly ordained Deacon Paul and his wife Nancy: March 25, 1988, outside Three Hierarchs Chapel at St. Vladimir's Seminary in Crestwood, NY.
Ordained to the Diaconate by Metropolitan Theodosius, March 25, 1988, in Three Hierarchs Chapel
Ordained to the Diaconate by Metropolitan Theodosius, March 25, 1988, in Three Hierarchs Chapel
Ordained to the Diaconate by Metropolitan Theodosius, March 25, 1988, in Three Hierarchs Chapel
Nancy still has to take charge of the situation for her still thoroughly non-plused newly ordained Deacon husband.
Nancy still has to take charge of the situation for her still thoroughly non-plused newly ordained Deacon husband.
Nancy still has to take charge of the situation for her still thoroughly non-plused newly ordained Deacon husband.

Fr Paul was ordained by His Eminence, Archbishop Job (at that time, he was His Grace, Bishop Job, Bishop of New England) on the Feast of St John the Baptist, June 24, 1988. Fr Paul had been ordained to the diaconate a few months earlier, on March 25th by Metropolitan Theodosius.

Serving as a Deacon at a Pre-Sanctified Liturgy during Great Lent, 1988, with Fr Tom Edwards. The altar boy is Sean!
Serving as a Deacon at a Pre-Sanctified Liturgy during Great Lent, 1988, with Fr Tom Edwards. The altar boy is Sean!
Serving as a Deacon at a Pre-Sanctified Liturgy during Great Lent, 1988, with Fr Tom Edwards. The altar boy is Sean!
Serving Pascha, 1988 as a Deacon with Fr Tom at Holy Apostles in Saddle Brook, NJ
Serving Pascha, 1988 as a Deacon with Fr Tom at Holy Apostles in Saddle Brook, NJ
Serving Pascha, 1988 as a Deacon with Fr Tom at Holy Apostles in Saddle Brook, NJ
Ken was awarded the Ph.D. in 1986. Fr John then urged him to get a degree from an Orthodox institution, i.e. SVS. He received the M.Th. from SVS, May, 1988. Here, Metropolitan Theodosius hands him his diploma.
Ken was awarded the Ph.D. in 1986. Fr John then urged him to get a degree from an Orthodox institution, i.e. SVS. He received the M.Th. from SVS, May, 1988. Here, Metropolitan Theodosius hands him his diploma.
Ken was awarded the Ph.D. in 1986. Fr John then urged him to get a degree from an Orthodox institution, i.e. SVS. He received the M.Th. from SVS, May, 1988. Here, Metropolitan Theodosius hands him his diploma.

Only five years earlier, Fr Paul - at that time, Kenneth, or Ken - his wife, Nancy, and their two children, Sean and Christina, had been received into the Orthodox Faith at Holy Apostles in Saddle Brook, NJ, under Fr Thomas Edwards. Ken was received under the protection of the holy apostle Paul, Nancy under the protection of St Anastasia, Sean under the protection of the holy apostle John, Christina under the holy Archangel Michael (Christina Michelle).

Fr Paul, or rather Ken, had recently been awarded an M.Div. degree from Nazarene Theological Seminary in Kansas City, MO (1986). Having been introduced to the Cappadocian fathers at NTS, he came to New York to pursue a Ph.D. in the area of Greek patristics under Fr John Meyendorff at Fordham University in The Bronx, NY. He was taking most of his patristics classes under Fr John at St Vladimir's Seminary in Crestwood, NY.

In the course of his studies at Fordham and St Vladimir's Seminary, of course Ken and Nancy discovered the Orthodox Church in America. Already, they had fallen in love with Orthodoxy - Ken through his study of the Greek fathers and his reading of books by Fr John and Fr Alexander Schmemann; and Nancy through her reading of "The Monk of Mt Athos." Discovering the OCA meant for Ken and Nancy that there was no reason not to become Orthodox. It meant they could remain American and still become Orthodox. In love with Orthodoxy and with the vision of the OCA, Ken and Nancy and their two children were received into the Orthodox Faith on Christmas, 1983.

Ken had no interest, no desire to be ordained a priest. But in the Winter of 1988, Fr John brought Ken into his office and told him, that if he was willing, he would be ordained to the diaconate and then to the priesthood.

Receiving the Priest's Pectoral Cross from Archbishop Job
Receiving the Priest's Pectoral Cross from Archbishop Job
Receiving the Priest's Pectoral Cross from Archbishop Job
Receiving the Phelonion
Receiving the Phelonion
Receiving the Phelonion
Ken's Mom and Dad were there, and one of his two sisters. All were deeply moved by the beauty and significance of the ordination service.
Ken's Mom and Dad were there, and one of his two sisters. All were deeply moved by the beauty and significance of the ordination service.
Ken's Mom and Dad were there, and one of his two sisters. All were deeply moved by the beauty and significance of the ordination service.

Ken - as did so very many others - held Fr John of blessed memory in the highest esteem and affection. Fr John's news hit him like a thunderbolt. Ken could hardly speak. He discovered at that moment in his heart an earnest desire to serve Christ's holy Church as a priest; and yet, he felt an acute sense of unworthiness; and yet, the Church - so his very dear pastor, Fr Tom assured him - was calling him. No answer was thinkable but, "Let God's will be done." 

Ken was ordained as Fr Kenneth Paul in Three Hierarchs Chapel at St Vladimir's Seminary by then Bishop Job on June 24, 1988, the Feast of the Nativity of John the Baptist.

Sean Michael, Christina, Nicholas, Katie, Mark
Sean Michael, Christina, Nicholas, Katie, Mark
Sean Michael, Christina, Nicholas, Katie, Mark
Newly ordained Fr Paul & Presbytera Nancy, June 24, 1988
Newly ordained Fr Paul & Presbytera Nancy, June 24, 1988
Newly ordained Fr Paul & Presbytera Nancy, June 24, 1988

By the time he was ordained, he and Nancy had a third child, Mark, born in 1987, named for St Mark of Ephesus. Now, 19 years later, they have two more: Nicholas, born in 1989, named for St Nicholas and Katie, born in 1994, named for St Catherine.

 
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