Protection of the Virgin Mary Church

Memory Eternal: Archpriest Sergei Garklavs

According to the Orthodox Church in America Diocese of the Midwest, Archpriest Sergei Garklavs fell asleep in the Lord on October 19th.

Fr. Sergei was the adopted son of Archbishop John (Garklavs), who was the bishop of Riga, Latvia, and who, after emigrating, became Archbishop of the American Metropolia. The future Fr. Sergei was an altar boy and helped protect the Tikhvin Icon after it came into Bishop John’s possession. Bishop John, along with Fr. Sergei, were forced to leave Latvia, and arrived in the United States in 1949, with the icon still in their possession.

In the United States, Fr. Sergei married Alexandra Iowina, then was ordained first to the diaconate and then the priesthood. Fr. Sergei served in churches around the Chicago area, including Holy Virgin Protection Church in Gary, Indiana (now in Merrillville), and Saint Panteleimon Church, Argo, IL before becoming dean of Holy Trinity Cathedral in Chicago.

After the death of Archbishop John in 1982, Fr. Sergei became the caretaker of the Tikhvin Icon, and it was he, who in 2004, returned it to Russia, amid great festivities.

Fr. Sergei was predeceased by his wife, Matushka Alexandra, and is survived by five children and eleven grandchildren.

Diocese of the Midwest post

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