Bishop of San Francisco

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In North America, one of the most important and major Sees in the Orthodox Church belongs to the bishop of San Francisco. Up until the 1920s, one bishop occupied the Orthodox See of San Francisco. When Communism came to power in Russia, the Orthodox Church in the Americas was left to fend for itself. Without the Russian Patriarch exercising control over America (Which up until that time, American churches of all ethnic varieties were under the care of the Most Holy Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia). This changed when the Soviets came to power, and the establishment of the Greek Archdiocese in North and South America in the early 1920s and the formation of other "ethnic" churches. Following the establishment of the Greek Church, came the Antiochian Archdiocese, the Serbian Diocese, the Bulgarian diocese, etc.

To further complicate things, the OCA and ROCOR broke into two jurisdictions in America and the diocese in San Francisco was divided into two amongst the Russians.

Contents

Bishops of San Francisco

Recognised as such by the OCA, the ROCOR and the MP.

  • Bp. John (Mitropolsky) 1870-1876 Transferred the Cathedra from Sitka to San Francisco in 1872, unnofficial)
  • Bp. Nestor (Zakkis) 1879 - 1882 (In his time the Holy Synod in St. Petersburg officially recognizes the move to San Francisco, thus, Bp. Nestor was the first "Bishop of San Francisco" He died at sea whilst sailing to Alaska from San Francisco. His body was found at the mouth of the Yukon river and was buried at Unalaska.)
  • St. Tikhon (Belavin) of Moscow (1898- 1907) American Cathedra transferred from San Francisco to New York. American Archdiocese given to auxiliaries, Bp. Innocent for Alaska and St. Raphael Hawaweeny for the Syrians.
  • Abp. Evdokim (Meschersky) (1914-1917). (left to attend the Great Sobor, never returned. Regretably he died in Schism in the "living Church" in 1935. Administraitor of the diocese.
  • Archbishop Apollinary (Koshevoy) of San Francisco (1926-33) In 1927, the diocese (and the Russian Church in America) would split in two, he was at that time expelled from the Holy Trinity Cathedral on Green St. in San Francisco. He and half of the community of Holy Trinity went on and started a seperate parish, which would later become Holy Virgin Cathdral (ROCOR) on Geary.


The ROCOR bishop of San Francisco


The OCA bishop of San Francisco

In 1922, a Sobor was held that ultimately decided on Autonomy for the American Archdiocese. In 1927, due to large protests for and against the Metropolia's decision, the diocese (and the Russian church in America) was devided in two, along those loyal to the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad and those loyal to what would later become the OCA.

  • Metr. Theophilus (Pashkovsky) (1931 - 1950) (He was made Archbishop of San Francisco from 1931 until his repose in 1950 in SF.


The Greek bishop of San Francisco

In 1997, the Greek Orthodox diocese of San Francisco was elevated to the rank of Metropolis, thus giving the Greek bishop of San Francisco the title of "Metropolitan". In the Greek church, the Metropolitan is of lower rank than an Archbishop, in the Slavic churches the reverse is the truer and the older tradition.

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