Diocese: Diocese of the West
Deanery: Pacific Northwest Deanery
Holy Resurrection Church
8710 - 28th Ave E
Tacoma, Washington 98445
PO Box 1332
Puyallup, WA 98371
Puyallup, WA 98371
Puyallup, WA 98373
Olympia, WA 98513
Puyallup, WA 98372
Graham, WA 98338
HOLY RESURRECTION CHURCH, Tacoma
The Church is located southeast of Tacoma, at the end of a private gravel Rd (28th Ave E) approximately 1 block west of the intersection of Waller Rd and 84th St.
HOLY TRINITY CHAPEL, Wilkeson
Watch for the cupola in the small neighborhood to your left as you enter Wilkeson. Wilkeson is located five miles south of Buckley, via State Rt 165. Buckley lies between Bonney Lake and Enumclaw on Highway 410.
Schedule of Services
All services are now in Tacoma. Services at Holy Trinity Chapel, Wilkeson are as announced.
7:00 PM Vespers.
9:30 AM Divine Liturgy.
6:30 PM Vespers or Vigil.
Eves of Great Feasts
9:00 AM Matins (if not served the previous evening).
Mornings of Great Feasts
10:00 AM Divine Liturgy.
Mornings of Great Feasts
Confessions are heard following every evening service or by appointment.
Call for other services or information.
[Will appear after all other details]
Wilkeson, Washington is a coal-mining town founded in the late 1870s that lies in the western foothills of Mount Rainier. The earliest known Orthodox Christian activity in Wilkeson is linked to visits by the noted Orthodox evangelist, Archimandrite Sebastian Dabovich. Father Sebastian was born and raised in San Francisco, the son of pious Serbian parents. He was the first Orthodox priest born in the United States as well as the first one ordained in this country.
Father Sebastian visited Wilkeson at least twice, first in 1892 when he met with local Orthodox Christians, and again in 1895 when he returned to assess the need for a permanent mission. As a result of Father Sebastian’s efforts, our parish was founded in July of 1896 under the auspices of Bishop Nicholas (Ziorov) of the Aleutians and Alaska, a bishop of the Russian Orthodox Church. Holy Trinity parish came to life on a visit from Father Amvrosii Vretta and a young Reader (and future priest) named Vladimir Alexandrov, both assigned to the newly founded church of St. Spiridon in Seattle. Bishop Nicholas was succeeded by Bishop Tikhon Belavin, the future Saint Tikhon, Confessor and Enlightener of North America. In 1900 Saint Tikhon preached a sermon in which he described our first parishioners as “Arabs, Greeks and Slavs,” together with “Uniates [Byzantine Rite Catholics] who had reunited and were living in Wilkeson.”
A small “prayer house” dedicated to the Holy Theophany was quickly erected in Wilkeson, but it was replaced in 1900 with a beautiful little temple dedicated to the Most Holy Trinity. Holy Trinity Church was consecrated on September 22, 1902 by Saint Tikhon. Father Vladimir Alexandrov, who had participated at the founding of the parish, was responsible for its spiritual life during most of the first years. The descendants of George and Mary Wytko, who were active parishioners at that time, still worship in our parish.
In these early years, following Fathers Amvrosii Vretta and Vladimir Alexandrov, the parish was served by Fathers Michael Andreades, Gregory Shutak, Andrew Kashevarov and Sergei Leporsky, the last known resident priest, who left Wilkeson by 1929. In the 1930s, with the advent of diesel, gas and electricity, coal production in Western Washington declined and the town of Wilkeson, which at one time boasted a population of almost 6,000, began to wane to its current level of fewer than 400 residents. It was in the 1930s that Andrew and Anna Michal moved to the area. Through their leadership, parish life was maintained for decades: the Wilkeson temple was kept in good repair, visiting priests came out from St. Spiridon in Seattle to provide services, and community relations were strengthened. The descendents of Andrew and Anna still worship in our parish.
During this time period the clergy from Seattle who served at Holy Trinity included Fathers Michael Danilchik, Paul Jeromsky, Michael Johnson, Nicholas Senin, and Vadim Pogrebniak. Fathers Michael Johnson and Nicholas Senin were assigned to Holy Trinity while living in Seattle and holding other positions. The other clergy were assigned both from St. Spiridon Cathedral and from St. Nicholas Cathedral (Russian Orthodox) in Seattle. They would typically visit Holy Trinity on certain Saturdays each month. Holy Trinity began to conduct most of its services in English rather than Slavonic during the ministry of Father Michael Johnson, and we became the first parish in Washington State to use English exclusively.
In 1970 the Russian Orthodox Church granted the North American Church administrative independence (autocephaly), thus forming the Orthodox Church in America. By 1985, Father Vadim Pogrebniak, the Dean of St. Spiridon in Seattle, successfully arranged for Holy Trinity parish to acquire Father John Pierce as its first full-time resident priest since 1929. After completing his studies at St. Vladimir Seminary in New York, Father John was assigned to Holy Trinity as his first parish and has remained here ever since. With a full-time priest providing leadership, the parish grew until it could no longer be contained in our historic Wilkeson temple.
In 1996 our parish moved to a quiet country setting, just minutes southeast of downtown Tacoma in the Midland-Summit area. Holy Resurrection Church, Tacoma, is presently housed in temporary quarters on our new site there. Between 1996 and 2006 our beloved Deacon Joseph Kerns—may his memory be eternal—labored in this fertile vineyard. Truly embodying the title of “deacon”, meaning servant, Father Joseph will long be remembered for his service in the Altar, in building up our parish and serving the people of Holy Resurrection.
In 2002 our parish gave birth to Holy Ascension Mission in Olympia. We also purchased more property adjacent to our Tacoma church, providing us with over nine acres of forested paths and grassy pastures. Buildings already in place have been improved for parish use, so that we now have an intermediate setting that can accommodate a growing church as we prepare to build a traditional Orthodox Christian temple for future generations. Our parish choir, under the direction of Matushka Katherine Pierce, has grown with the parish to provide a beautiful foundation for our worship. In 2005, with the help of St. Spiridon Cathedral in Seattle, we inaugurated a Slavonic Liturgy, served once a month on a Saturday, to minister to new Slavic immigrants in the greater Tacoma area.
Our pastoral ministry has been augmented and blessed by the ordinations of Deacon Luke Fordice in 2003, Father Daniel Armatas in 2005, and Father Irenaeus Williams in 2007. Our long-term plans in Tacoma include construction of a traditional Orthodox temple, a parish fellowship/education building, the first Orthodox Christian cemetery in Washington State, and a remodeled bookstore/administrative building. Our current facilities will be modified and used in various ways to build Orthodoxy in our area. Our original home and birthplace, Holy Trinity Church in Wilkeson, is now listed on both the National and State Historic registers. Holy Trinity is maintained in good condition and used for special services throughout the year.