Priestmonk James [McLuckie]

The Priestmonk James [McLuckie], 64, who was attached to Holy Resurrection Sobor here, fell asleep in the Lord on Wednesday, July 22, 2009 after an extended illness.

Father James was born in Trail, BC, on August 20, 1944, into a typical “dual” Canadian ethnic family—his maternal great-grandparents and their children emigranted from western Ukraine and settled in the Beausejaour area of Manitoba in 1890, while his father emigrated to Canada from Scotland in 1929. He was raised in Castlegar, BC, where he received his elementary and secondary education.

He received a BA in sociology with a philosophy minor from Catholic University, Washington, DC, and subsequently earned a STB. He was received into the Orthodox Christian faith in 1971 and continued post-graduate studies at Saint Vladimir’s Seminary, Crestwood, NY, which he completed in 1973. He taught high school in Washington, DC and undertook a variety of lay ministries at his home parish there.

He was ordained to the holy priesthood by His Beatitude, Patriarch Elias IV of Antioch on July 3, 1977, after which he was assigned to an assistant pastorate in San Francisco, CA. He also served as founding pastor of Saint John the Evangelist and Theologian Church, Orinda CA, and other Antiochian missions. After his reception into the Orthodox Church in America in 1991, he was assigned rector of Saint Innocent Mission, Fremont, CA. [The mission initially met at the historic church of Mission San Jose, which Saint Innocent Veniaminov visited in 1836.]

On July 2, 1995, Father James suffered a sudden and unexpected heart attack and a stroke after major bypass surgery, which greatly limited his ministry. The following year, he was transferred to the OCA Archdiocese of Canada, and underwent extensive rehabilitation therapy. In 2000, he was attached to Vancouver’s Holy Resurrection Cathedral and pursued voluntary ministry with recovering addicts and alcoholics in Vancouver and the Prince George area. On September 22, 2007, he was tonsured to monastic rank.

Father James was also an accomplished iconographer, muralist, and restorer.  He was also one of four individuals who collaborated on “The Icon Book,” a “classic” published by the Antiochian Orthodox Archdiocese in the 1970s and still in use today.

May Father James’ memory be eternal!