In Memoriam: Archpriest Kirill Hartman

Archpriest Kirill Hartman, 81, rector of Saint John the Baptist Church here, fell asleep in the Lord in the morning of June 22, 2010. He had been in a coma since suffering and aneurysm and stroke two weeks previously.

A native of Rockford, IL, Father Kirill was ordained to the priesthood relatively late in life. A college professor, he had taught Russian language and literature at Bowling Green University in Ohio for several years before and after ordination. In the early 1990s, he took an early retirement in order to assume duties as rector of Saint John the Baptist Church, Berkeley, CA, duties he quietly, conscientiously and fully performed until the very day of his hospitalization and loss of consciousness.

An intellectual with a fine sense of humor, he delighted in Chinese art, old icons, science fiction and mystery, animals, carpentry (by which he greatly enriched his parish), and current events. He was a friend and spiritual father to a large and unlikely group of people of all ages, races, and backgrounds.

Among his spiritual children he will be remembered for his continued emphasis on the person of our Lord Jesus Christ; his emphasis on the primacy of courage among the virtues (and his reminder that loyalty is a corollary of courage); his simple and evangelical explanation of the human condition—that God came to earth so that we “might have life and have it more abundantly;” his astounding generosity; and his personal gentleness.

Father Kirill never married and has no surviving close blood relatives.

Funeral services will be celebrated at Saint John the Baptist Church, 1900 Essex Street, Berkeley, CA at 7:00 p.m. on Friday, June 25. The Divine Liturgy and Panikhida will be celebrated at 9:00 a.m. on Saturday, June 26. Interment will be in a family plot in Rockford, IL.

May Father Kirill’s memory be eternal!