ST. TIKHON’S SEMINARY PREPARES TO WELCOME NEW DEAN: The Very Rev. Dr. Alexander Atty
ven as we prepare to bid farewell to our beloved Dean of nine years, Bishop MICHAEL, we look forward to welcoming our new Dean, V. Rev. Dr. Alexander Atty, this July. Father Alexander Atty is a well loved member of the St. Tikhon’s Seminary family, having contributed to the life of the Seminary as a member of our Board of Trustees and in myriad other ways. Although Fr. Alexander has made his home in Louisville, Kentucky for the past 30 years, pastoring St. Michael the Archangel Antiochian Church, he is a Pennsylvania native. As a child he lived the “unity of faith and diversity in practice” that now characterize his ministry. Baptized and formed in the faith for his first 14 years in St. Mary’s Antiochian Church in Johnstown, Pa., he learned Slavic expressions of Orthodoxy when his family moved to Pottsville, Pa., joining St. Michael Russian Orthodox Church in the town of St. Clair.
Father Alexander graduated from Penn State University and Philadelphia College of Textiles and Science with a Bachelor’s Degree in business and a minor in textile engineering. He worked as an engineer for three years before entering St. Vladimir’s Seminary in Crestwood, N.Y., where he graduated with a Master of Divinity in 1979. After a summer spent both at the Balamand Seminary and Monastery in Lebanon and on pilgrimage to Mount Athos, he “made the best decision of [his]
life” and married Olga Nehrebecki in October, 1979. His Eminence, Metropolitan PHILIP quickly ordained the newly married Alexander to the Holy Diaconate and Priesthood. graduated with a Doctor of Ministry In May, 1980, Fr. Alexander was degree from Pittsburgh Theological assigned to St. Michael the Archangel Seminary. Church, in Louisville, Ky. He immediately began a vigorous agenda of His love of theological education parish growth – growth in numbers; has extended to St. Tikhon’s, which in spiritual life; in physical facilities; has been the beneficiary of his zeal in education and ministry to its and generosity for years. Like his whole membership, from the predecessor, Bishop Michael, Fr. youngest to the oldest; growth in Alexander works “in the trenches.” evangelism, charity, and outreach. He has personally led teams from And God has bountifully blessed Louisville to South Canaan to those efforts: St. Michael’s has grown improve the Seminary’s physical and from under 300 to nearly 1,000 technological facilities. Last summer, members; they have attracted hun- Father could be found one moment dreds of converts; they have opened a in work clothes wielding a paintchapel, an educational complex, a brush in a classroom, and the next senior living facility, and a home for moment in his robes and cross, delibpersons with special needs. Services erating in the boardroom. Truly he is are celebrated every day. Parishioners a shepherd who leads from among his minister to the general public flock, not above them. through health fairs and a soup kitchen; and Fr. Alexander himself Firm father; loving counselor; serves the Louisville law enforcement servant leader; man of constant community as a chaplain. prayer – these are the characteristics that the Lord has nurtured in Fr. Father Alexander maintains plen- Alexander, and it is these same attribtiful educational opportunities – and utes that, with God’s help, he will high expectations – for the souls impart to the next generation of under his care. Pre-marriage retreats future pastors and Church leaders are mandatory for couples, as are spe- whose formation he will oversee as cial seminars for the Parish Council. Dean of the Seminary. The annual two-day St. Michael’s Institute has flourished under his May God abundantly bless the direction, and Khouria Olga leads ministry and leadership of Father yearly choir workshops. Father Alexander – and may He grant Alexander’s expectations of himself Archpriest Alexander and his family are no less stringent: in 2008, he many blessed years! 57
The Tikhonaire from 2010