Seraphim (Melkonian) of Baltiysk

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His Grace Seraphim (Melkonian) is the Bishop of the Baltiysk, Vicar of the Smolensk and Kaliningrad Diocese under the jurisdiction of the Church of Russia.


Vladimir Melkonian was born on December 29, 1961, in the city of Adler in the Krasnodar Krai in south western Russia. After completing his secondary school education in 1979, Vladimir worked as a manual worker at a construction site before he was called to serve in the Soviet army during the period from 1980 to 1982. After completing his army service, Vladimir moved to the city of Ufa in the south eastern edge of European Russia. There, he worked as a watchman and boiler-man for the local diocesan administration and carried out the obedience of Reader at the Church of the Intercession of the Holy Theotokos in Ufa.

In 1984, Vladimir entered the Odessa Seminary with the blessing of Bishop Anatoly of Ufa and Sterlitamak. After graduating from the seminary in 1988, he entered the Moscow Theological Academy, graduating in 1992.

In 1990, he entered the monastic community of the Monastery of St. Daniel in Moscow, Russia. In December 1990, Vladimir was tonsured a monk, with the name Seraphim in honor of St. Seraphim of Sarov, by Archimandrite Ippolit, the father superior of the monastery. In January 1991, he was ordained deacon and, in April 1990, hieromonk by Archbishop Valentin of Orenburg and Buzuluk.

In 1992, Father Seraphim was transferred to the Russian Orthodox Mission in Jerusalem where he served until late 1999. In 1995, Patriarch Alexei II awarded him a pectoral cross. In 1997, he was elevated to the dignity of igumen, at the Church of the Holy Trinity of the Jerusalem Mission. In 1999, Fr. Seraphim was recalled to Russia and assigned as head of the Orthodox pilgrimage section under the chairman of the Department of External Church Relations (DECR).

On April 3, 2001, the Holy Synod of the Church of Russia elected Igumen Seraphim to the episcopate as Bishop of Baltiysk, Vicar of the Diocese of Smolensk and Kaliningrad. On [[April 18], Igumen Seraphim was elevated to the dignity of archimandrite by Metropolitan Kirill of Smolensk and Kaliningrad, chairman of the DECR, at the church of the Holy Trinity at Khorochevo. On May 19, Archim. Seraphim was consecrated Bishop of Baltiysk by Patr. Alexei II, assisted by nine other hierarchs at the Cathedral Church. After the liturgy, Patr. Alexei presented the newly-consecrated bishop with his bishop’s crosier.

Succession box:
Seraphim (Melkonian) of Baltiysk
Preceded by:
Panteleimon (Kutovoy)
Bishop of Baltiysk
Vicar of the Diocese of Smolensk

2001 - Present
Succeeded by:
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