+ Metropolitan Hilarion (1948 — 2022)


Update: Per the encir­cu­lar pub­lished by the Holy Syn­od on May 4/17, 2022, the funer­al arrange­ments for the new­ly-reposed Met­ro­pol­i­tan Hilar­i­on will be the following:

Sat­ur­day, May 8/21 at the Syn­odal Cathe­dral of the Sign (NYC)

7:30 am: Hier­ar­chi­cal Divine Litur­gy
10:30 am: Funer­al Ser­vice (Otpe­vanie), accord­ing to the monas­tic order

Sun­day, May 9/22 at Holy Trin­i­ty Monastery (Jor­danville, NY)

3 pm: Bur­ial in the broth­er­hood ceme­tery, behind the cathedral.

Christ is Risen! Truly He is Risen!

Met­ro­pol­i­tan Hilar­i­on of East­ern Amer­i­ca and New York was the sixth First Hier­ar­ch of the Russ­ian Ortho­dox Church Out­side of Rus­sia. He reposed in the Lord on May 3/16, 2022 fol­low­ing a lengthy illness. 

Met­ro­pol­i­tan Hilar­i­on’s par­ents — his father Alex­ei Kapral and his moth­er Euphrosy­nia (née Kasya­niuk) — were from the vil­lage of Obenizha in Voly­hn, Ukraine. In 1929, dur­ing the Pol­ish occu­pa­tion, the local pop­u­lace was per­se­cut­ed and oppressed by Poles attempt­ing to turn West­ern Ukraine into a Pol­ish province. Thus, the 19-year-old Alex­ei and his young wife decid­ed to emi­grate to Cana­da . At the time, the Cana­di­an gov­ern­ment afford­ed immi­grants the oppor­tu­ni­ty to obtain large tracts of land in West­ern Cana­da; it was there that the young fam­i­ly set­tled. Upon their arrival in the province of Alber­ta , the Kapral fam­i­ly received 160 acres of untilled land, as well as $100 in cash, a ham­mer, and an axe, with which to build them­selves a home. In the devel­op­ing Spir­it Riv­er region, there were some 200 Ukraini­ans, and in view of the oncom­ing cold, they quick­ly built them­selves hous­es. The great eco­nom­ic cri­sis of 1929–1930 affect­ed the set­tlers as well, mak­ing an already hard life even more dif­fi­cult. To find work, Alex­ei Kapral had to trav­el far from home, and he earned but 25 cents per day. Nonethe­less, the fam­i­ly grew ever larg­er — five boys and two girls filled the house with chil­dren’s voic­es, speak­ing Ukrain­ian at home. Their par­ents also spoke Russ­ian and Pol­ish. The youngest mem­ber of the fam­i­ly was Igor, the future Met­ro­pol­i­tan Hilar­i­on. He was born on Jan­u­ary 6, 1948, in Spir­it Riv­er , and spent his child­hood in the coun­try. He had to walk over 3 miles to school every day. Lat­er he trans­ferred to anoth­er school in Blue­ber­ry Creek, but returned to fin­ish high school. In 1966, he found a spir­i­tu­al direc­tor, the Right Rev­erend Sava (Sarace­vic), Bish­op of Edmon­ton, a Serb who great­ly revered our Holy Hier­ar­ch St. John (Max­i­movitch, +1966).

From his youth, Igor felt drawn to the Church, and loved to read books and peri­od­i­cals on reli­gion and morals. In 1967, when Igor Kapral was 19 years old, he entered Holy Trin­i­ty The­o­log­i­cal Sem­i­nary in Jor­danville, NY. Upon grad­u­at­ing from the sem­i­nary in 1972, Igor entered Holy Trin­i­ty Monastery as a novice [lit.: poslush­nik, one under obe­di­ence]. On Decem­ber 2, 1974, he was ton­sured a rias­saphore monk with the name Hilar­i­on, in hon­or of the Ven­er­a­ble Schema-monk Hilar­i­on of the Kiev Caves, the famous Met­ro­pol­i­tan of Kiev. On Decem­ber 4, 1975, Arch­bish­op Averky (Tau­shev, +1976), for whom the future Vla­dy­ka served as a cell-atten­dant, ordained him a hierodea­con. In 1976, Bish­op Lau­rus of Man­hat­tan ordained him a hieromonk. The same year, Fr. Hilar­i­on received a Mas­ter’s degree in Slav­ic Stud­ies and Russ­ian Lit­er­a­ture from Syra­cuse Uni­ver­si­ty. The future Vla­dy­ka worked simul­ta­ne­ous­ly as edi­tor of the Eng­lish-lan­guage ver­sion of the mag­a­zine Ortho­dox Life, and as a type­set­ter for the Monastery press.

On Decem­ber 10, 1984, His Emi­nence Met­ro­pol­i­tan Phi­laret (Voz­ne­sen­sky, +1985) and nine oth­er bish­ops offi­ci­at­ed at the con­se­cra­tion of Hieromonk Hilar­i­on to the epis­co­pa­cy. As Bish­op of Man­hat­tan, Vla­dy­ka Hilar­i­on was also respon­si­ble for the parish­es of Penn­syl­va­nia and was appoint­ed the Deputy Sec­re­tary of the Syn­od of Bish­ops by the Coun­cil of Bish­ops. Ten years lat­er, thanks to the arch­pas­toral efforts of Bish­op Hilar­i­on, the num­ber of parish­es in the East­ern Amer­i­can Dio­cese grew to 64. Vis­it­ing parish after parish, Vla­dy­ka drew the love and respect of all those who met him. Hold­ing a posi­tion of respon­si­bil­i­ty in the admin­is­tra­tive cen­ter of the Church Abroad, Vla­dy­ka Hilaron was also an active par­tic­i­pant in the main events of its his­to­ry. In 1995, Bish­op Hilar­i­on was giv­en the title Bish­op of Wash­ing­ton even as he con­tin­ued to live in New York, but due to prob­lems in the Dio­cese of Aus­tralia and New Zealand after the retire­ment of the ail­ing Arch­bish­op Paul (Pavlov), and in recog­ni­tion of his excep­tion­al pas­toral tal­ents, Vla­dy­ka Hilar­i­on was ele­vat­ed to the rank of Arch­bish­op and appoint­ed rul­ing bish­op of the Dio­cese of Syd­ney, Aus­tralia and New Zealand.

In 2003, Vla­dy­ka Hilar­i­on was award­ed the right to wear the dia­mond cross. Dur­ing the Coun­cil of Bish­ops of the Russ­ian Ortho­dox Church Out­side of Rus­sia in 2006, he was appoint­ed First Deputy Pres­i­dent of the Syn­od of Bish­ops. In 2008, fol­low­ing the repose of His Emi­nence Met­ro­pol­i­tan Lau­rus, Arch­bish­op Hilar­i­on was elect­ed First Hier­ar­ch of the Russ­ian Ortho­dox Church Out­side of Rus­sia and Met­ro­pol­i­tan of East­ern Amer­i­ca and New York, a post he filled while con­tin­u­ing to be Rul­ing Bish­op of the Dio­cese of Aus­tralia and New Zealand.

source: Synod.com