The founding of St. Vladimir's parish began in October, 1915, when a group of approximately 30 Russian immigrants met and decided to organize an Orthodox Christian parish focused on ministering to the same population. At first the Divine Liturgy was served in a vacant church, but as the congregation grew the parishioners decided to build a church of their own using traditional Orthodox Christian architecture. They bought a parcel of land near the vacant church they had been using and, to save money, the parishioners dug out the land for the basement and foundation with their own hands. In 1917 the church building was completed and consecrated, and in 1918 the parish was incorporated in the state of New Jersey. During that same year, another tract of land was purchased to serve as the parish cemetery. Firmly established, the parish continued to grow and prosper despite the strife and political changes in Russia that continued to affect the lives and morale of the parishioners.
In 1926 Fr. Vladimir Lilikovich became pastor and during his five years of service the parish took on new life. A parochial school was established and in 1927 the Sisterhood of the Assumption of the Theotokos was organized. In 1932 Fr. Stakhy Borichevsky became pastor, an office he held until 1949 when he was succeeded by Fr. Paul Shafran. Fr. Paul served in this capactiy until 2002, when he was granted retirement and attached as Pastor Emeritus. Fr. Martin Kraus served the parish from 2002--2007. Archpriest Eugene Vansuch was assigned to the parish on January 1, 2008 and served for three months until his unexpected falling asleep in the Lord on March 23, 2008. May his memory be eternal. Fr. Jason Vansuch, son of Fr. Eugene Vansuch, replaced him shortly thereafter, remaining through June 7, 2013. Fr. John Diamantis was assigned June 8, 2013 and is the current priest responsible.
In 1942 the parish built a two-story rectory and in 1947 additional land was purchased to expand the cemetery and another two lots were bought adjoining the rectory on Grand St. In 1951, the growing parish community made it necessary to enlarge the church building. After the enlargement was completed a new Iconostasis was installed and the interior of the building was renovated. A decision was made to adorn the interior walls with Byzantine iconography and Mr. Pimen Sofronov was hired to design and execute the frescoes. After completing his work at SS Peter and Paul Church in Syracuse, NY, Mr. Sofronov arrived in Trenton in 1954 and began his work with the Icon of Christ for the Iconostasis. After working day and night for two years, Mr. Sophronov completed the magnificent iconographic frescoes in 1956.
As the parish continued to grow in number it became clear that a church hall was needed to accommodate its educational and social activities. In 1959 Mr. Feodor Bonderchuk donated a corner plot of land next to the church in memory of his daughter, Daria. A few years later, a building fund drive was held and the hall was built. Daria Hall was dedicated on November 22, 1964. Another large and unexpected gift of land was received in 1965 when Mr. Peter Traskewicz donated more than ten acres of land in Hamilton Square to be used as a recreation area in memory of his wife, Nadezhda. Several men of the parish, led by Mr. John Chanczewsky, built a large picnic pavilion of steel. In 1997 the picnic grounds were the site of the parish's first carnival, held May 21-24.
As Orthodox Christians, the main aspect of our life is to live and proclaim the Gospel of Our Lord God and Savior Jesus Christ. By living a Christian life according to the teachings of Our Lord and by allowing Christ to be the center of our lives, we will not only continue to build up our parish of St. Vladimir but more so we will be able to bring Christ to others and thereby be witnesses to our Orthodox Christian faith.
St. Vladimir Orthodox Church continues to grow. It continues to grow in faith and in love. It continues to live and proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ not only within the Trenton Area but also throughout The New Jersey/Pennsylvania area. As a growing parish within the Trenton Community, we welcome everyone, especially you, to join us in prayer and in fellowship as we continue to support the growth of our beautiful Trenton community.
May God continue to bless and guide you with many more blessed years of good health and joy!
COME GROW WITH US! COME PRAY WITH US!