Sunday, August 21, 2011

August 21, 2011

90 years ago, on this day, a baby was born in Beaverdale, PA, USA. Who knew that this little baby would accomplish so much in his lifetime. We are talking about our own Bishop Michael Rusnak.
Throughout his lifetime, he had a taste of life in USA, Canada and Slovakia. Following his education, he joined the Redemptorists. He was persecuted as were many other religious in Slovakia and thanks to his USA birth certificate, he was able to escape and return back to USA and eventually come to Canada. With the help of Fr. Mina he established a number of Slovak parishes and eventually was ordained a Bishop. He was Auxiliary Bishop to H.E. Bishop Isidore Borecky and in 1981 became a Bishop of his own Eparchy: the Eparchy of SS. Cyril & Methodius for the Slovaks of Byzantine Rite in Canada. He was instrumental in building the Cathedral of Transfiguration and after retiring, he spent his life at a nursing home. We often visited him on special occasions and celebrated his milestone birthdays.
And so on this day, August 21,2011- a small group of us gathered at his gravesite and prayed the panachyda. There were: Mrs. Seminsky, Mrs. Bucic, Mr. & Mrs. Revtak, Mrs. & Miss Dribnak, Mrs. Siroky, Mary Snell and leading us was Fr. Peter Pidskalny, C.Ss.R., from Yorkton, Saskatchewan. Fr. Peter knew Bishop Michael and visits his grave every time he is in the area. He was ordained to the sub-diaconate by Bishop Michael and thus has a special connection to him. He spent many of his summer vacations at Nativity of the Mother of God church on Shaw St. Following panachyda, we stayed at his graveside and reminisced about the old times - happy and sad. We thus honoured a man who was a focal point in our lives and in our church.
Vicnaja pamjat, Vladyko.

Mary Siroky - Snell

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