A MEMBER OF THE STANDING EPISCOPAL CONFERENCE OF ORTHODOX BISHOPS ESTABLISHED IN 1951
Archbishop Josephus Johannes Palumbo, OCR, D.Min, D.Rel serves as the Resident Domestic Missionary in Charge of all Spiritual Matters of Liturgy, Preaching and Parochial Visitations. In Preparation for the Sacred Ministry he was Educated at Stratford Military Academy (Elementary), St. Augustine (Minor) High School Seminary, La Salette Junior College Seminary and Savonarola Theological Seminary (STS) of the Polish National Catholic Church (PNCC) and Graduated (3.4 GPA) with Honors. During his course of study he was given the Tonsure, the Monor Orders of Doorkeeper, Lector, Blesser/Exorcist and Acolyte.
He was Ordained to the Major Order of Subdeacon during his course of Studies and put under a period of probationary scrutiny to prove if he was rightly called to the Holy Priesthood.
On the Feast of St Gabriel the Archangel, March 24, 1976 Subdeacon Palumbo was Ordained to the Order of Deacon and to the Holy Priesthood at St. Stanislaus PNCC Cathedral by the Prime Bishop Thaddeus F. Zielinski. His first assignment was as Vicar of Holy Trinity PNCC Cathedral in Manchester, NH. He Celebrated his First Mass before an overflowing congregation of family, friends and parishioners at St. Valentine’s PNCC in Philadelphia, PA. The Very Rev. Stanley Podgorny the Pastor delivered the Sermon.Father Palumbo is the first man to be Ordained of Italian descent in the Polish National Catholic Church and since. He was also Licensed by three PECUSA Bishops between 1977 and 1980 and Celebrated all of the Sacraments in Diocese’s in New Jersey and California.
Rev. Dr. Henry M. George was the Archbishop’s Professor of Sacred Scripture during his years at STS. He had a profound influence on the Archbishop while still a young Seminarian. Dr. George later served as his Proctor and Mentor as he went on to earn his advanced degrees. At this time Dr. George was the President of Chatham Hill College and Divinity School. The Archbishop has often remarked, the two occasions on which Dr. George presented him with his advanced degrees earned from Chatham Hill are only exceeded by his Ordination and Consecration. Dr. George and the Archbishop remained in close contact for years thereafter.
The abilities of young Father Palumbo were recognized relatively early in his Ministry and he was later Elected and Consecrated to the Historic Episcopate. He has been in Public Ministry since 1976 and served the Church in various Parochial and Administrative Positions in 18 United States and 3 Foreign Countries. He has offered a variety of Ministry centered around Parishes and Missions in the Heart of the Missouri Ozarks since February 2004.
In late September 2006 upon the Invitation of ++John Charles Maier, OCR and Sister Mary Grace Maier, OCR, the Archbishop and Mother Maria Graciela traveled to Southern California. After a time of Prayer, the Celebration of the Holy Eucharist and Rigorous Examination it was determined the Archbishop and his wife Mother Maria Graciela were to be received into the Order of Christ Our Most Holy Redeemer and Heavenly King. On the Feast of St. Matthew September 21, 2006 Master General ++John Charles Maier, OCR was the Celebrant as the Archbishop and Mother took Vows and were formally admitted into the Order. The Ceremony was conducted during the Celebration of the Divine Liturgy at the Historic Chancery and Chapel in Laguna Beach, California. ++Josephus Johannes, OCR and Mother Maria Graciela, OCR have the distinction of being the last 2 Members received into the Order by Master General John Charles, OCR. Upon the untimely demise of Archbishop John Charles Maier, OCR in early December 2013 as his designated Successor, ++Josephus Johannes Palumbo, OCR took his place as the Fifth Master General of the Order of Christ Our Most Holy Redeemer and Heavenly King.
In early October 2008 the Archbishop with Mother Maria Graciela, OCR and a small band of Dedicated Laity Purchased a fixer upper single family Dwelling on a quaint Hill in Barry County, Missouri. The plan was to construct a Church Building with the Manse (Church House) as the Residence with the Pastoral Center and Theological Library within the Residence. It was decided to place this determination and undertaking to the Glory of Almighty God under the Patronage and Protection of St. Mary Magdalene. With Confidence in the All Good and Life Giving Holy Spirit to Guide and Provide the Means and Resources for the Project, the Work began.
The Residence needed many Repairs and the Grounds the services a of Professional Landscaper. Stepping out in Faith the Repairs were commenced on the Manse, the Landscaping including Tree Removal undertaken and the Construction of the Chapel begun. The challenges of weather, finances, capable craftsman and promises made, but not honored made the completion of the work seem never ending. Much Prayer and Reliance on the Almighty aided by the Intercession of St. Mary Magdalene our Patroness saw all come together to the desired end. In less than a year the Chapel was finished, the Manse Remodeled inside and out and the Landscaping completed. The Service of Dedication and Consecration was held on the Feast of Christ the King 2009. It was well attended and all were in Awe and Thankful for the undeserved Blessings of the Almighty. Since these early beginnings the Manse has undergone further Renovations and a Metal Roof put on the Chapel. Recently the first Church Sign was replaced and a new one installed in front of the Manse near the edge of the Property. The 12 year Mortgage on the Property was paid off in 9 years. The Deed was recorded in the name of the Church and granted tax exempt status.
The Blessing of owning Brick and Mortar Church Property accomplished 3 important things. First, it allowed a Local Parochial Ministry to be established. Second, it provided a Headquarters for the Anglican Orthodox Archdiocese of America. Third, it gave the Order of Christ the King the First Mother House (since 1900 A.D.) owned in the name of the Order. The News of the Manse and Chapel made its way to California unknown at the time to the Archbishop. About 5 years thereafter a new chapter was written with unexpected responsibilities and the Many Blessings that resulted from them.
Early in 2014 the Protectors of one of the most Historic Archives containing the Estates of those (Churchmen) who first brought Orthodoxy to America decided to designate the Archbishop as its new Custodian. The contents consist of and are not limited to 2 Huge Commercial Filing Cabinets of Church Paper Ephemera, Personal Letters, Certificates, Altar Service Books, Theology Books from every Discipline, Episcopal Regalia, Vestments, Church Furniture and all manner of Altar Appointments. It was stored for decades in Southern California until released from two sources several years ago. Much of the content of this Historic Archive dates back to the 1880’s through to the 1980’s. Photos and descriptions of many of these items are detailed in Part I of the Home Page on this Website.
The Archbishop can almost always be found on the grounds of St. Mary Magdalene on the Hill in either the the Theological Library, the Oratory, the main room of the Manse or in the Chapel next to it. He Welcomes those personally who Visit the Chapel and answers questions from Inquirers about the Appointments found there within. The Archbishop makes the Theological Library available to those who look to deepen their understanding of the Christian Faith. He freely offers Devotional Books and Pamphlets to help strengthen the Spiritual and Prayer Life of all who ask for his Counsel.
Mother Maria Graciela, OCR or Sister Marie as she is affectionately called by those who know her best serves the Community as a Domestic Missionary. She is usually not far in proximity from the Archbishop.
TRADITION WITH MEANING
“PRO DEO ET HUMANITATE”