UPDATED—Fire destroys church at Ascension Monastery Church, Clinton, MI

Updated with photos showing the extent of the damage, plus new info for donations.

UPDATE 2: New GoFundMe Page to help raise money for Holy Ascension Monastery is now up. From the GoFundMe page:

Help to rebuild our church!

We are sad to report that the church of the Holy Ascension Romanian Orthodox Monastery burned to the ground. All the components of the church including expensive icons, vestments were lost. Also lost was our candle making machine which was our only way of support. Fortunately we were able to salvage the holy relics. Any contribution you can make is greatly appreciated, and if anyone has a candle making machine that is not being used that would be a lifesaver for us.
Total loss to the monastery is about $ 1.5 millions.

We thank you for your support and prayers.

UPDATED—Fire destroys church at Ascension Monastery Church, Clinton, MI

Clinton MI, OCA, August 13, 2016:
Ascension-fire
With sadness, the Romanian Orthodox Episcopate of the Orthodox Church in America reported that the church at the Monastery of the Ascension of the Lord here was destroyed by fire around noon on Friday, August 12, 2016.  The cause of the blaze is as yet unknown.His Eminence, Archbishop Nathaniel of Detroit and the Romanian Episcopate and Priest Vicar Dan Hoarste traveled to the monastery to be with the monastic community immediately upon learning of the blaze.  His Beatitude, Metropolitan Tikhon requested the faithful to keep the monastery brotherhood in their prayers.  During this difficult time, the Episcopate also offers prayers to grant peace and comfort to the monastic community during this difficult test.

Ascension-fire2Out of concern and a display of support, the Episcopate is establishing a fund for the monastery.  Information on making donations may be found on the Episcopate’s web site.  The total collected will be distributed to the monastery and will be reported in Solia-The Herald.
===Per the Romanian Episcopate’s Website:

Ascension-fire3…Out of concern and a display of support, the Episcopate is establishing a fund for the monastery and encourages parishes to make a collection.

As with all official Episcopate Appeals, we ask that the parish combine all donations and send a check(s) made payable to:

ROEA, PO BOX 309, GRASS LAKE MI 49240-0309

Note “Ascension Monastery Fire” on your check.

The total collected will be distributed to the monastery and will be reported in Solia – The Herald.

 

2 thoughts on “UPDATED—Fire destroys church at Ascension Monastery Church, Clinton, MI

  1. Irineu Duvlea , Sebastian Dumitrascu– con mans…do not give them money..they put fire on that church…

    ORDER, JUDGMENT AND DECREE
    Certain procedures were initiated in the late summer of 2015 against then-Bishop Irineu (Duvlea), at that time the Auxiliary Bishop of the Romanian Orthodox Episcopate of America (ROEA) and Abbot of Holy Ascension Orthodox Christian Monastery (later renamed Holy Ascension Romanian Orthodox Christian Monastery [unauthorized change]), as a consequence of oral reports made to me in my capacity as Archbishop of the Romanian Orthodox Episcopate of America regarding possible sexual and other misconduct on the part of then-Bishop Irineu. In the course of these procedures, then-Bishop Irineu was officially put on leave of absence which restricted the performance of his clerical and administrative duties pending the investigation of these allegations by a letter dated August 25, 2015, forwarded to me by Metropolitan Tikhon, Primate of the Orthodox Church in America, and by a letter from the Office for Review of Sexual Misconduct Allegations (ORSMA) of the Orthodox Church in America, dated August 25, 2015, which was addressed to then-Bishop Irineu. On September 1, 2015, a Response Team was appointed to investigate these matters.

    On January 25, 2017, a certain final Report of this Response Team was submitted by the Response Team appointed under the provisions of the Policies, Standards and Procedures on Sexual Misconduct (“PSPs”) of the Orthodox Church in America. This Report addressed its findings of fact and recommendations regarding nine (9) allegations of misconduct (including certain allegations regarding sexual misconduct and certain allegations regarding violations of canonical duties respecting a superior hierarch) on the part of Bishop Irineu (Duvlea), at that time the Auxiliary Bishop of the Romanian Orthodox Episcopate of America and Abbot of the Holy Ascension Orthodox Christian Monastery in Clinton, Michigan. At the time of the submission of this final ORSMA Report on January 25, 2017, then-Bishop Irineu was already in a status of involuntary leave of absence and suspension from all of his former clerical and administrative duties.
    This Report of January 25, 2017 determined that five (5) of these allegations investigated, relating to sexual misconduct, and one (1) of these allegations investigated, regarding his violation of canonical duties respecting a superior hierarch, were substantiated. As a consequence of the findings and recommendations of this Report, then-Bishop Irineu’s suspension was extended by the Holy Synod of the Orthodox Church in America from the performance of all duties of his office, whether religious, clerical, administrative, or otherwise, which he had formerly exercised within the Romanian Orthodox Episcopate of America; this in accordance with the binding provisions of the Policies, Standards and Procedures on Sexual Misconduct of the Orthodox Church in America. In addition to this suspension from all functions of every kind within our Church, then-Bishop Irineu was referred to a Synodal Court of the Orthodox Church in America which was convened at Saint Demetrius Church, Jackson, Michigan, on Wednesday, June 21, 2017
    At 10 AM on June 21, 2017, the Synodal Court consisting of 12 bishops of the Orthodox Church in America convened at Saint Demetrius Church in Jackson, Michigan, and reviewed substantial documentation and heard extensive evidence by witnesses adduced by then-Bishop Irineu. Following the close of the hearing held before the Synodal Court, the member-bishops of the Court thereafter determined that then-Bishop Irineu should be, and was, deposed from his episcopal rank in the Church and reduced to the status of a lay monk, having no administrative, clerical, religious, liturgical or official authority of any kind within the Orthodox Church in America or the Romanian Orthodox Episcopate of America, including the Holy Ascension Orthodox Christian Monastery in Clinton, Michigan.

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  2. Certain incontrovertible evidence establishes beyond all doubt that Monk Irineu, although having nothing more than lay status in our Church and no sacerdotal or episcopal authority of any kind, now continues to mock the Holy Mysteries of our Church by pretending to celebrate these as a cleric of episcopal rank, wholly without any suggestion or pretense of canonical authority to do so.

    Certain other incontrovertible evidence also establishes that Monk Irineu has in recent days undertaken certain administrative measures to bring into being a certain civil corporation styling itself as “Holy Trinity Romanian Orthodox Monastery.” Certain documents filed with the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Services (Corporations, Securities & Commercial Licensing Bureau) on or about July 10, 2017, would indicate that the “registered agent” of this corporation is “Right Reverend Bishop Ioan Irineu Duvlea” and that its registered office is at “15143 Sheridan Road, Clinton, MI 49236.”

    In light of the foregoing incontrovertible facts and in the exercise of my hierarchical authority as Archbishop of Detroit and of the Romanian Orthodox Episcopate of America, and in the exercise further of my hierarchical and canonical authority under the Holy Canons of the world-wide Orthodox Church; the Statute of the Orthodox Church in America; and the Constitution of the Romanian Orthodox Episcopate of America, I now order, adjudge, and decree as follows:

    That the purported celebration of the Holy Mysteries of our Church and of other Divine Services of the Church undertaken by Monk Irineu (Duvlea) from the time of his suspension from the exercise of all clerical and episcopal authority by the Holy Synod of the Orthodox Church in America on August 31, 2015, and more particularly since his deposition from episcopal rank and his reduction to the status of a lay monk by that Holy Synod on June 22, 2017, are canonically and sacramentally invalid, null and void; wholly without canonical authority of any kind or character; and are further entirely devoid of and lacking in all sacramental and soul-saving Grace; and further
    That the established and incontrovertible acts shown to have been undertaken by Monk Irineu (Duvlea), in this connection styling himself as “Right Reverend Bishop Ioan Irineu Duvlea,” with respect to the bringing into being on or about July 10, 2017, of a civil corporation styling itself as “Holy Trinity Romanian Orthodox Monastery,” and having its registered office at 15143 Sheridan Road, Clinton, Michigan 49236, were undertaken by Monk Irineu (Duvlea) without the knowledge or consent of any competent canonical or hierarchical authority; in a complete absence of all canonical or hierarchical authority of the Orthodox Church in America; in a complete absence of all canonical or hierarchical authority of the Romanian Orthodox Episcopate of America; and in contravention to the strict requirements of the Holy Canons of the world-wide Orthodox Church; the Statute of the Orthodox Church in America; and of the Constitution of the Romanian Orthodox Episcopate of America.
    I direct that the Chancellor of the Romanian Orthodox Episcopate of America publicize and distribute this Order, Judgment, and Decree by appropriate means to the Faithful of our Romanian Episcopate and to those monastics of the Holy Ascension Orthodox Christian Monastery who remain steadfast in their loyalty to and love for our Romanian Orthodox Episcopate of America. As the constitutional, canonical, and hierarchical head of Holy Ascension Orthodox Christian Monastery, I pray fervently for the souls of all of our Faithful and of the loyal monastics of the Monastery who remain steadfast in its mission to advance within the Romanian Orthodox Episcopate of America the Gospel of our Lord, God, and Savior, Jesus Christ.

    This Order, Judgment, and Decree is entered at the Chancery Office of the ROEA in Grass Lake, Michigan, on this, the 27th day of July, 2017.

    +NATHANIEL, Archbishop of Detroit
    and of The Romanian Orthodox Episcopate of America
    and Canada
    Orthodox Church in America

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