posted: October 16, 2020

St. John of Shanghai and San Francisco Russian Orthodox Mission Church celebrates its Fifth Anniversary on Saturday Oct. 24 with a “Pulled-Pork and Russian Sides” takeout dinner at the Mazeppa Union community hall, 3200 Johnson Mill Road, Mazeppa, 4 to 8 p.m. Those getting the boxed dinners will enjoy tasty food while engaging a unique story of the only Russian Orthodox Christian parish in central Pennsylvania, now raising funds for building a Church.


The takeout boxed dinners, featuring freshly made pulled-pork sandwiches and sides such as Russian-style potato salad and blintzes, will raise money for a planned Church building on the mission parish property in Winfield. Pulled-pork, coleslaw, baked beans, mac and cheese, and potato salad will be sold in a take-away box for $10, and three blintzes for $5. Sodas will be available for $1. All proceeds will benefit the mission’s building project. Discounts or free meals are available for those in need or on fixed incomes. Advance orders can be phoned in for pickup. More information:


At the same time, the mission Church is highlighting to the public the unique stories of members who have become Orthodox Christians from many religious and ethnic backgrounds. Six stories are currently featured on the new “Voices from St. John’s” webpage, and more will be updated there during the fifth-anniversary year:

They include the stories of members who became Orthodox Christians in search of salvation and spiritual healing, from backgrounds including former Lutheran, Pentecostal, Unitarian, Catholic, atheist and Buddhist adherents. All have found a spiritual home in the Russian Orthodox tradition, which is part of worldwide Orthodox Christianity, rooted directly in the original Apostolic Church of the Holy Land, older than Protestant or modern Catholic practices.


Although Russian Orthodox communities in Pennsylvania originally were based in immigrant communities in the anthracite region and in large urban areas, the Lewisburg mission is unique as based in a small college town in a rural farming area, consisting mainly of converts from non-Russian backgrounds,and also serving the Bucknell University community. Last year, the mission acquired a few acres of land in Union Township including a small cemetery, where it plans to build a permanent temple. Currently it meets in the Lewisburg Club in downtown Lewisburg. Orthodox Christian worship is known for its ancient but living liturgical and ascetic practices, including its iconography, distinctive chanting, and meditative prayer. It shows how Christianity is a way of life that is both traditional and relevant to the challenges of life today.


For more information on the mission’s story and worship times, as well as on Orthodox Christian tradition, please see

Contact: Deacon Paul “Alf” Siewers, [email protected], 570-523-8876/570-863-9039, Faculty Adviser to the Orthodox Christian Fellowship at Bucknell University

Rector: Father George Sharonoff, [email protected], 570-751-9063

Parish President: Luke Austin Soboleski, (570)447-8748, [email protected]

  • 94.1 WQKX
    • PO Box 1070
    • Sunbury, PA 17801
  • Phone: 570-286-5838
    • Fax: 570-743-7837
    • Request/Contest: 1-800-326-94KX
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