Irineu (Duvlea) of Dearborn Heights

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His Grace, the Right Reverend Irineu (Duvlea) of Dearborn Heights was from 2002 to 2017 the auxiliary bishop to Archbishop Nathaniel of Detroit of the Romanian Orthodox Episcopate of America (ROEA), a diocese of the Orthodox Church in America (OCA). In 2017, a Synodal Court of the OCA deposed Bishop Irineu from the episcopacy and returned him to the status of a simple monk, following an investigation whose details remain confidential.[1]


Irineu Duvlea was born on April 19, 1962 in Alba Iulia, Transylvania, Romania, the son of John and Aurelia Duvlea. Inclined toward a monastic life, he entered the Brancoveanu Monastery at Sambata de Sus, Brasov County in Romania in 1980. In 1981, he entered the theological seminary in Cluj Napoca. On May 3, 1983, he was ordained a deacon, followed on May 24, 1983 when he was tonsured a monk by Bishop Lucian of Fagaras. On November 17, 1984, Dn. Irineu was ordained a hieromonk by Metr. Antonie of Transylvania at the Metropolitan Cathedral in Sibiu.

After completing seminary at Cluj Napoca in 1987, Fr. Irineu continued his studies at the Andri Saguna Theological Institute in Sibiu, graduating with a thesis titled Rules of Organization and Function of Monasteries in the Romanian Orthodox Church. On August 15, 1988, Fr. Irineu was blessed to the dignity of Protosyngelos by Metr, Antonie.

On January 1, 1993, Fr. Irineu was named Hegumen of the Brancoveanu Monastery with the added duties as abbot supervising the life in 15 neighboring monasteries and 10 sketes. During this time, Hegumen Irineu tonsured 30 monks and 15 nuns as well as installing most of the abbots and abbesses of the monasteries in the Sibiu Diocese. On August 15, 1993, Fr. Irineu was raised to the dignity of archimandrite during the consecration of a monastery by the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew and Patriarch Teoctist of Romania. On September 24, 2000, Arch. Irineu was awarded the right to wear a miter.

In fulfillment of Abp. Nathaniel’s desire to establish within the Romanian Orthodox Episcopate of America a monastic presence in the Center of Orthodox Christian Studies at St Andrew’s House in Detroit, Michigan, Arch. Irineu received, with a group of monks, canonical release from the Patriarchate of Romania to move to the Unites States and establish a monastic community at the center. On February 23, 2001, Arch. Irineu was named the abbot of the community which was dedicated to the Holy Ascension.

On June 28, 2002, the Congress of ROEA elected Arch. Irineu as a candidate for auxiliary bishop within the ROEA. His election was confirmed by the Holy Synod of Bishops of the OCA on July 24, 2002 during a special session of the Thirteenth All-American Council of the OCA. On November 2, 2002, Arch. Irineu was consecrated Bishop of Dearborn Heights at the St. George the Great-Martyr Orthodox Cathedral in Southfield/Detroit, Michigan.

In June 2017, the Holy Synod of the OCA met at Holy Dormition Monastery in Michigan to discuss confidential matters concerning Bishop Irineu. On June 27, 2017, in an archpastoral letter, the Holy Synod communicated its decision that Bishop Irineu be deposed from the episcopacy, removed from the ranks of the clergy and returned to the status of a simple monk.

Succession box:
Irineu (Duvlea) of Dearborn Heights
Preceded by:
Bishop of Dearborn Heights
2003 – 2017
Succeeded by:
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