November 13, 2016
Canada: Archimandrite Innocent (Potter) reposed in the Lord
Wednesday, November 9, Archimandrite Innocent (Potter; cleric of the
Eastern American Diocese) reposed in the Lord. He was 67.
Fr. Innocent was born in Nova Scotia in 1949. Though of Russian
heritage, he began his service in 1989 in the old calendarist
"Genuine Greek Orthodox Church of America," where he was tonsured a
reader and ordained subdeacon, deacon, and priest by Metropolitan
Paisios (Loulourgas). In 1993, he was received into the Russian
Church Abroad by Bishop Hilarion of Manhattan (now First Hierarch of
ROCOR). In his first year, he taught Greek at Holy Trinity Seminary
in Jordanville, NY. From 1996-2006, he led ROCOR’s Holy
Transfiguration Mission in Saint John, New Brunswick.
Since 2008, Fr. Innocent nourished the faithful of the missionary
community at St. John the Wonderworker Chapel in Wytopitlock, ME.
Despite living in another country (Canada) and having to travel
nearly six hours across the border, he would frequently visit the
faraway chapel, celebrating the divine services, baptizing people,
and serving treby.
One of the chapel’s founders, Seraphima Smalley, wrote of Fr.
Innocent: "Words cannot convey the magnitude of love and care we
received from Fr. Innocent. He was the most humble, guileless,
gentle person we’ve ever known… He was a lover of souls, and he
especially loved young people and children. Our children literally
grew up under his love and pastoral care. He was such a part of our
lives, more like a family member, and we are all feeling a bit like
orphans without him."
Fr. Innocent reposed suddenly on November 9. Owing to the far
distances and international border, it was difficult to arrange
appropriate preparation and burial. Thanks be to God, a faithful
brother of Fr. Innocent’s was found in Priest Alexander Treiger
(assistant priest at Holy Prince Vladimir OCA Church in Halifax,
NS). Thanks to Fr. Alexander’s labors, on Saturday, November 19, the
appropriate funeral for a priest was served at St. Vladimir’s Church
following Liturgy for the departed. Fr. Innocent’s body was laid to
Clementsvale Baptist Church Cemetery, not far from his family home.
Memory eternal to the newly reposed Archimandrite Innocent!
Media Office of the Eastern American Diocese