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Unique historical resource on the history of Orthodoxy in America has been published

On the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the repose of Patriarch Tikhon (Bellavin) of Moscow and all Russia and the 55th anniversary of the granting of Autocephaly to the Orthodox Church in America, with the blessing of it’s Primate, His Beatitude Metropolitan Tikhon, and the Interim Administrator of the Patriarchal Parishes of the Moscow Patriarchate in the USA and Canada, Bishop Matthew of Sourozh, with the participation of the leadership of the New York Public Library and the HathiTrust, an almost complete archive of the Russian American Orthodox Messenger is available with free online access. Work on this project has been carried out over the past two years and has become an example of fraternal cooperation between the Orthodox Church in America and the Patriarchal Parishes of the Moscow Patriarchate in the USA.

This unique resource, currently available free of charge to everyone, will be of interest not only to professional historians but to all interested in modern church history.


The Russian American Orthodox Messenger (“Vestnik”) is the first official periodical of the Aleutian and Alaskan diocese, founded in 1896. The "Vestnik" served as the main source of information for the diocesan clergy of North America informed. It published information about the events of the life of the diocese and also contained unique articles and travel notes of Russian Orthodox missionaries.

The first editor of the “Vestnik” from the day the publication was founded was the rector of St. Nicholas Cathedral in New York, Priest Alexander Hotovitzky, glorified among the New Martyrs and Confessors of the Russian Church in 1994. His successor as editor from 1914 to 1930 was Father Leonid Turkevich (later to become Metropolitan Leonty).

Among other famous authors whose writings appeared on the pages of the periodical in the first years of its existence were the enlightener of America, St. Patriarch Tikhon (Bellavin); St. Raphael, Bishop of Brooklyn; Holy Righteous Protopresbyter Alexis Toth, confessor and defender of Orthodoxy in America; Hieromartyr John Kochurov, Presbyter of Chicago, as well as many others.

Much appreciation is given to Abbot Nikodim (Balyasnikov), Chancellor of the Patriarchal Parishes in the USA, Priest Alessandro Margheritino, Secretary of the Orthodox Church in America, and Priest Mark Rashkov, Vice-Chancellor of the Patriarchal Parishes for their cooperation and efforts in making this important work come to fruition. In addition, special gratitude is given to Bogdan Horbal, Head of Technical Processing at NYPL's Science, Industry and Business Library for the vital role he played in this project.

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All Rights Reserved ©2024- Any Republication for the Glory of God is Permitted with the Reference:

"The Patriarchal Parishes of the Russian Orthodox Church in the USA -"


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Published with the blessing of His Grace Matthew
Bishop of Sourozh
Interim Administrator of the Patriarchal Parishes in the USA & Canada

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