Talk:The Abbey of the Holy Name (West Milford, New Jersey)

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Mount Royal and Brothers

A few corrections:

The monastery of Our Lady of Mount Royal and the Church of Christ on the Mount (Christ on the Mount being the "Mount Royal") was that received in 1962 by Bishop Dositheus of the Moscow Patriarchate. Brothers left the Moscow Patriarchate in 1963, and Dom Augustine (Whitfield) was elected his replacement. Neither Brothers or Whitfield every was consecrated an Orthodox bishop (both had been 'Old Catholic' bishops). From 1963 onwards, Dom Augustine was the Abbot of Mount Royal - which was not located in Jacksonville, FL until 1989-1993. From 1963, the Mount Royal property in Woodstock being lost (Brothers kept the building, Dom Augustine & Bishop Dositheus kept the monastic brotherhood), the community relocated to the Russian Cathedral in NYC where they served in a side chapel, or a Western altar set up in front of the Royal doors. This was all that was left of the MP Western rite - there was no 'Western Rite Exarchate of Moscow'. During the period that Dom Augustine led the Orthodox Mt. Royal inside the Russian Church, his contact with St. John Maximovitch is what led to the reception of Mt. Royal into ROCOR in 1975. Dom James (Deschene) later became prior - before founding Christminster in Providence, RI after Abbot Augustine's retirement and relocation to Florida. Between that period, Mount Royal had remained in the Northeast, and once relocated to Colorado in the late 1980s. *IF* Abbey of the Holy Name is descended from Brothers, it couldn't be Moscow Patriarchate. Aristibule

Strange. As I understood it, Bp William was received in by Bp Dosistheus in 1962. Moscow did not demand Bp William's voyage to Russia to be reconsecrated until 1966, when he refused and went under Abp Palladios.

Would you mind explaining how one had the building and the other the brotherhood when they were all part of the same church? --JosephSuaiden 02:59, July 28, 2008 (UTC)

I've sent you some documentation and history by private email. Abbot William, Prior Augustine and the rest were received in 1962 as the Monastery of Mt. Royal. Per the letter dated 27 March, 1962 of Bp Dositheus (of which I sent you a copy) Brothers was asked to profess Orthodox monastic vows so that he might be elevated through the ranks. This is because Moscow did not accept the sacraments of the "Living Church" movement as having grace. Clergy of the Living Church in Russia had already been received back into the Church, and regularized by chrismation and ordination. Brothers had been consecrated while married by Bp Nicholas Kedrovsky of the Living Church (about 1932.) The story about 1966 is too late - in 1963 he had already begun acting outside of his Orthodox ministry, and began performing Old Catholic consecrations again. 1963 was the same year that Bp John (Wendland) had received instructions to consecrate Brothers - but he had already left and cut off contact. By 1968 he had re-activated the "Old Catholic Church in America" that he had from Joseph Rene Villatte and Prince Landes-Berghes. (From what I've been told, St. Dunstan's was the name in Waukegan,IL - the move to NY involved the new name: which became Mt. Royal.)

The Prior of Mt. Royal at the time was Fr. Augustine (Whitfield) who was elected as the new Abbot in 1963. Legalities meant that Brothers owned the chapel in Woodstock (The Church of Christ on the Mount - Mt. Royal), but not the Brotherhood which was and is the Monastery of Mt. Royal, which remained with the Patriarchal Church. At that time the Mt. Royal monastery relocated to apartments in NYC, and St. Nicholas Cathedral NYC (where they celebrated on a temporary altar in front of the Royal doors.) Dom James (Deschene) became the new prior. This arrangement continued until they were forced to join ROCOR (through events both related to the rector of St. Nicholas not wanting Western rite in 'his' building, and the new strictures placed on the Patriarchal parishes by the OCA's agreement with Moscow.) In 1975, they moved out of the Cathedral and into a succession of small chapels either in the ROCOR dioceses of Eastern America or the Midwest. -- Aristibule