History

Holy Apostles Orthodox Church of Saddle Brook, NJ came into being on December 18, 1968 when a group of around forty individuals chose to remain faithful to the then Metropolia when the majority of parishioners of Three Saints Church of Garfield, NJ chose to go to the Moscow Patriarchate.

For its first seven years divine services were held at the Amvets Hall in Garfield, NJ.  The founding pastor was Fr John Steffaro who was followed by Fr Eugene Tarris and Fr Cyril Lukashonak.  It was during Fr Lukashonak’s pastorate that the parish purchased property in Saddle Brook.  Fr James Worth served the parish for a short time until the appointment by +Metropolitan Leonty of Fr Thomas Edwards in 1974 who served as parish rector for 30 years.

It was during Fr Edwards’ pastorate that the church was built in Saddle Brook.  It was financed by the sale of interest-bearing bonds and the free-will offerings of parishioners and friends.  The Myrrhbearing Women made substantial financial contributions with various arts and crafts projects that they sold for many years at an annual charity booth at a nearby mall.  They also sponsored Chinese auctions, dinners, raffles, “mystery bus rides” and a variety of other projects.  The parish council sponsored “Russian New Years Eve’s dances” as well as barn dances and other activities.  Other than erecting the four walls and roof of the church, the men of the parish did the majority of the labor to complete the church interior.  Two parishioners, +John Hoc and +Edward Yuhas were called to eternal rest while working on the church, and +John Cherba reposed while helping to set up the altar in the make-shift days of the Amvets Hall.

The iconography is principally the work of +Monk Sergius (Timothy Girioux) and Timothy Loya.  Additional iconography has been completed by iconographers Fr Philip Koufos and Dmitry Shkolnik.  The cherry wood iconostas, altar table, oblation table and other liturgical items were hand carved by Master Woodcarver +Paul Mozes of blessed memory.  The stained glass windows are faithful reproductions of classic Russian iconography of the Novgorod School.