John H. Erickson

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The Very Reverend John H. Erickson is a retired priest of the Orthodox Church in America and former Dean and professor emeritus of St. Vladimir's Orthodox Theological Seminary at Crestwood, New York. His field of scholarship has been in Orthodox Christianity with specialization in Orthodox canon law and church history. Father John served as the Dean of St. Vladimir's Seminary from 2002 until 2007.

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John H. Erickson grew up in northern Minnesota and joined the Orthodox Church in 1964. His post secondary school education included studying at Harvard University from which he received a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1966, Yale University from which he received a Master's degree in Philosophy in 1970, and St. Vladimir's Seminary from which he received the Master of Theology degree in 1984. John began teaching canon law and church history at St. Vladimir's Seminary in 1973 after having his degree from Yale.

When Father Thomas Hopko retired as Dean of St. Vladimir's Seminary on July 1, 2002, John was appointed dean for a five year term as a layman. After four years leading the seminary, he entered the Holy Orders when he was ordained deacon on January 30, 2006 and then priest on May 7 three months later. Both his ordinations were by Metropolitan Herman (Swaiko), then the President of the Seminary and Metropolitan of the Orthodox Church in America.

With the expiration of his term as dean on June 30, 2007, Fr. John stepped down as dean but continued to teach at the Seminary as the Peter N. Gramowich Professor of Church History until his retirement after the 2008/2009 academic year. His successor as dean was Fr. John Behr.


Father John wrote extensively, both books and articles, as well as his contributions as an editor. Among his works are the following:

  • Orthodox Christians in America (Oxford University Press, 1999) ISBN 0-88141-086-1
  • The Quest for Unity: Orthodox and Catholics in Dialogue, with John Borelli (SVS Press and United States Catholic Conference, 1996) ISBN 0-88141-113-2
  • The Challenge of Our Past: Essays in Orthodox Church History and Canon Law (SVS Press, 1990) ISBN 0-19-510852-3
  • Associate editor, Orthodox America, 1794-1976 (Orthodox Church in America, 1975)
  • Editor and translator. Vladimir Lossky, In the Image and Likeness of God (SVS Press, 1974) ISBN 0-913836-13-3
  • Co-editor, five volumes of Orthodox liturgical music (SVS Press)