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Albanian Orthodox Diocese of America

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In 1965 at the passing of Bp. Theofan, without an Archdiocesan nomination and under the cloud of Communist influence, the Church of Albania consecrated his successor, Bp. Stephen (Lasko), who was not accepted throughout the Archdiocese and who likewise could not gain canonical recognition by the other Orthodox jurisdictions in North America. The situation was further irritated by the complete public suppression of all religious communities in Albania, with only the most stalwart Orthodox believers maintaining a clandestine liturgical life.
 
Bp. Mark and the Albanian Orthodox Diocese of America reasserted their status as the lone canonical Albanian Orthodox jurisdiction in the Americas. By October 1971, with the acceptance of Bp. Stephen and the Albanian Orthodox Archdiocese in America as a constituent diocese of the [[OCA]] - see [[Albanian Archdiocese]] - the canonical controversy was ended.
 
The Albanian Orthodox Diocese of America played a crucial role in the resurrection of the Church of Albania. In 1990, the Diocesan clergy and laity petitioned the Ecumenical Patriarch, Demetrios, during his visit to North America, to prepare a plan for the restoration of the Church of Albania. In 1991, the (then) Protopresbyter Ilia Katre, who had served for many years as Dean of Students at Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology in Brookline, MA, took up residence in Albania, organized and opened the Resurrection of Christ Seminary with the blessing of the newly-arrived Patriarchal Exarch, Anastasios. The Very Rev. Ilia also directed the enthronement of Anastasios as Archbishop of ALL Albania in August 1992.
 
 
 
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