Părintele VASILE HAŢEGAN

 
Părintele VASILE HAŢEGAN

       Parintele Vasile Haţegan s-a născut la 15 noiembrie 1915, în Youngstown, Ohio, SUA, fiul lui Ioan şi Rafila Haţegan, emigranţi români, originari din Sebeş.
       După ce a terminat studiile medii (High School) - anul 1933, pleacă in România, unde îşi perfecţonează limba română, obţinând Diploma de Bacalaureat la Liceul „Gheorghe Lazăr” din Sibiu. Absolvă Institutul Teologic „Andrei Şaguna” din acelaşi oraş. Urmeaza in paralel programul de doctorat la Facultatea de Teologie din Bucureşti si cursuri de Literatură şi Filosofie. A fost interpret la multe întâlniri oficiale şi a cunoscut multe personalităţi din Romania interbelică.
       Declanşarea Celui de al II-lea Război Mondial, îl determină să părăsească România, călătorind în Anglia. Aici îşi continuă studiile la South West University – Exeter si Cambridge University.
       Întors în Statele Unite, frecventează Universitatea din Youngstown, urmând apoi cursuri pentru doctorat in Istoria Americii la Universitatea din Columbia şi la Case Western în Cleveland.
       In 1941, dupa căsătorie cu viitoarea preoteasă Cornelia Luca, este hirotonit preot de către IPS Arhiepiscop Athenagoras – viitor Patriarh Ecumenic, pe linie maternă de origină română - în lipsa PS Episcop Policarp, reţinut de autorităţi în România.
       Între anii 1941-1955 a slujit la Parohia „Sfântul Dumitru” din New York, apoi - după plecarea neaşteptată întru Domnul a părintelui John Trutza - preia Parohia „Sfânta Maria” din Cleveland până la pensionare (1982).
       Sub păstoria sa a fost construită prezenta Catedrala în stil Maramureşan, cu Sală de întruniri si Muzeu de artă. A publicat Buletinul Parohial si nenumărate articole.
       A fost coeditor al ziarului „Orthodox Spirit” si mulţi ani editorul secţiei în engleză a revistei „SOLIA”.
       A editat ziarul „Orthodox Unity” şi a colaborat permanent la „SOLIA”, „Information Bulletin” al Centrului de Studii şi Documentare „Viorel D. Trifa”, „America” sau „New America news”. A publicat cărţile „Romanian Culture in America” şi „Orthodoxy in Cleveland”.
       La chemarea Domnului, a plecat pe 25 aprilie 2003, în Vinerea Mare. Se odihneste la „Sunset Cemetery”, în Cleveland.

Displaying and Promoting Romanian Folk Art in America

       Besides the love of and pride in their Romanian roots and heritage, the pioneer Romanian immigrants brought along with them articles of folk and religious art, some Romanian reading matter, such as the Bible, prayer books and selected Romanian literature. A few of the immigrants, especially among the females, arrived garbed in their distinctive national costumes, which they forwent for the apparel of the day at that time in this country.
       Their Romanian language, customs, religion, dances and philosophy, plus the personal tangible mementos, were reminders of their heritage, which they wanted to preserve and perpetuate in this country. The cherished artifacts were not simply stored away. but found a prominent place in the homes they eventually set up.
       In the early Romanian home in America, one could usually find a re¬ligious and ethnic corner, consisting of an ikon on glass or wood draped with a hand embroidered Romanian scarf, before which hung a vigil light or a votive candle.
       On a lower shelf or elsewhere, there might be a container of holy water, a censer, pussy willows or palms from previous Palm Sunday services, deco¬rated Easter eggs. A wooden hand cross and other religious articles, such as candle stubs from past Easter Services, baptisms or weddings. Nearby on other shelves or in a glass case, may be found a variety’ of other Romanian folk-art items, such as carved wooden objects, ceramics, possibly a reed flute (fluier), dolls dressed in Romanian costumes and other trinkets.

Publicaţia Solia (The Herald) secţia in engleză, editată  de Părintele Vasile Haţegan (1971)

Publicaţia “Solia” (The Herald) secţia in engleză, editată de Părintele Vasile Haţegan (1971)

       After some of these immigrants established themselves permanently, bought or built homes and had a more stable financial base, the more ambi¬tious and dedicated among them, even went so far as to set aside a while room which was furnished with Ro¬manian objects, curtains, drapes, carved furniture, paintings, coffee table with vases, ceramics. Some of these rooms, especially in later years, were quite elaborate and a veritable museum of Romanian folk art.
       As the Romanians settled and formed ethnic communities, they built churches, social halls, schools and other facilities for their common use. Eventually, items from private collections were donated to these Romanian institutions, where they were worked into the existing facilities and displayed for public viewing. In some instances, Romanian scenes were painted on the walls or the backdrop on the stage. Such was the case in Youngstown, Ohio and Hermitage, Pennsylvania where Mrs. Sally Moga, a dedicated Romanian folklorist and painter, has done some murals. In time. when new buildings were built with more and better facilities, some of them became semi-museums of Romanian folk art.
       As the pioneer Romanian immi¬grants passed away and the succeed¬ing generations replaced them, inter¬est in displaying and promoting Romanian folk art waned accordingly. Many of the articles brought over so lovingly and displayed with such pride were stored away and some were even lost.
       Those of the first generation of Romanians in America, who were still conscious of their ethnic background, showed some interest in their heritage and continued to display these inherited folk-art items, preserve and promote its culture. Second, third and fourth generations showed less and less interest in these matters.
       Besides practicing their religion, the early Romanian parishes and lately the newer ones became centers of Ro¬manian culture. Services during these early years were held almost exclusively in the Romanian language. Most of the parishes and some of the mutual-aid and cultural societies had Romanian classes where the rudiments of the Romanian language were taught, usually by the priest or some volunteer. Attendance was optional and often erratic. With the exception of those pupils whose parents or some zealot teacher took a personal interest, these courses weren’t too effective. Notwithstanding, the pupils were exposed to the Romanian language and culture, which they carried in their hearts and mind, keeping them aware of their roots and giving them a certain incentive to further evaluate them.
       The success of a parish in finding a happy medium to serve the religious and cultural needs of the congregation was largely dependent on the dedication, ingenuity and resourcefulness of the priest. It is difficult to qualify the success of the priest serving the parishes throughout the years, but some do stand out above others.
       The Romanians in America were fortunate in having a few priests, who, though they were less than perfect, were the right persons for the job at that time.
       The larger parishes, besides cantors, also had a choir which gave the responses at the Liturgy. These choirs also learned Romanian secular folk music. which they sang at special occasions in the life of the parish or at some other non-parish event in the community at large.
       Alongside the choir, some parishes and societies sponsored folk dancing groups, whose members dressed in Romanian costumes and performed the better-known Romanian folk dances.
       In some cases, when Romanian costumes could not be purchased in Romania, the parents of the children, under the supervision and guidance of skilled seamstresses, sewed them themselves. A few parishes, as for instance, in Youngstown, had special sewing classes under the direction of Preoteasa Victoria Stanila for the confection of Romanian blouses, embroidery and costumes.
       Some parishes, especially those in which there are a greater number of recent newcomers from Romania, still have Romanian classes, folk dancing groups, theatrical and artistic ensembles and other Romanian oriented activities. As the members become more Americanized, these ethnic ori-ented activities gradually decreased.
       Leafing through the collection of Romanian newspapers and almanacs published in America, you can run across news items describing events promoting Romanian culture and the public exhibit of Romanian artifacts. The annual almanacs have many group pictures of choirs, Romanian classes, folk dancing groups, etc.
       Just before, during and right after World War I, visits of Romanian offi¬cial delegations to America to enhance the cause of the union of all Roma¬nian provinces into one country, were reported in the Romanian and American press and helped to draw attention to Romanian matters. Wherever they went, the local Romanian community welcomed them and often set up exhibits of Romanian art for the benefit of their American neighbors. With the establishment of the Romanian Embassy in Washington D.C., which was housed in an elegant building with many facilities and lots of space, Romanian culture and folk art found a more permanent home, which eventually expanded to other Romanian government facilities elsewhere in Arrjenci.
       Though democratic in outlook and practice. Americans were always fascinated and excited by royal visits. Romanian royal visits were no exception. In 1920, Prince Carol, who was to become King Carol II, visited America and helped found the Society of Friends of Romania by William Nelson Cromwell.
       Besides publishing an excellent quarterly, “Roumania,” the Society initiated the collection of Romanian folk art in the mansion of Cromwell in New York City. The Society often participated in various ethnic cultural affairs throughout the city, especially in the well-known “America in the Making” exhibit in 1922. The activities of the Society continued for 20 years, after which many of the folk-art items were donated by St. Dumitru’s Romanian Orthodox Church in Manhattan, during the pastorate of Father Vasile Hategan. The visit of Queen Maria with her daughter Princess Ileana and son, Prince Nicholas in 1926 had a salutary and lasting effect upon cultural relations between America and Romania. Wherever she traveled in America, exhibits were started; some of which were perpetuated in local museums.
       Of the other visits of Romanian dignitaries to America, that of Professor Nicolae Iorga in 1930 had an even greater lasting effect. Besides visiting a number of Romanian communities and lecturing at universities, he encouraged the founding of Romanian schools and permanent exhibits. His experiences in America were written up in a book published with this occasion.
       Throughout the years, a number of enthusiasts of Romanian folklore and art carne to America with their collections, set up exhibits in various parts of the country, lectured and advised others to do likewise. Eventually, they donated their collections to establish institutions specializing in ethnic folk art. Among the most extensive and representative collections to be brought to America was that of Anisoara Stan, who had collected Romanian folk art for many years before coming here in 1922. She crisscrossed the country exhibiting collection and executing on Romanian folk art in various cities, not only in Romanian communities but also to a much larger American audience. She wrote of her experience in a hardcover book: “They Crossed Mountains and Oceans.” She was a dreamer and envisioned an ethnographic museum to be built in America with the participation of many nationalities.
       Unfortunately, this dream was never realized. After her death, her husband donated the extensive authentic col¬lection to “St. Mary Romanian Ortho¬dox Church Museum” in Cleveland, where k is one of the mainstays.
       At about the same time, Angela Ionescu, a collector and producer of Romanian peasant art, exhibited her collection throughout America, beginning with the “Women’s Arts and Industries Fair,” in 1927. She introduced Romanian peasant art in American schools, wrote, lectured and exhibited at the 1939 World’s Fair in New York. Later, she also exhibited at the “Golden Gate Fair” in San Francisco. She sold or donated many of her creations, which are now in various collections.
       A plan to establish a “Romanian Folk Art Museum” in the Chicago area was made by Rodica Perciali in the eighties.
       Far away from the Romanian centers in the country is a unique attempt to exhibit works of Romanian folk art at the “Maryhill Museum of Fine Arts” in Oregon State. The Romanian collection was started by Samuel Hill and was dedicated by Queen Maria of Romania during her visit in 1926. The collection consists of carved furniture, embroideries, paintings, sculptures, ceramics, costumes and glassware, to which were added many Romanian objects donated by Queen Maria.
Kent State University in Ohio has one of the most extensive collections of books, manuscripts and photographs of the Romanian royal family and of Romanian history. It was originally started by Ray Baker Harris of Wash¬ington, D.C. in 1925 and through the efforts of Professor John Popa Deleu was donated to the University. Professor Glee Wilson, coordinator of Romanian studies at the University, has been in charge of the Romanian collection since 1972, which is steadiiy expanded and properly evaluated. In 1991, a most successful exhibition of Romanian folk art was held at the University with the cooperation of the “Museum of History of Bucharest.” The extensive display concentrated mostly on Romanian peasant, military and ecclesiastical costumes. The University provided space in its museum for a permanent display of Romanian costumes and artifacts.
       Aside from individual initiatives of Romanian citizens and the official Romanian commissions and delega¬tions, the Romanian government or¬ganized a number of exhibits of Ro¬manian art in America after World War I.
       Romania’s participation in the 1939 World’s Fair was undoubtedly the most extensive and successful. Even through under communist domination, the Romanian government made an effort to promote Romanian folk art abroad. In 1976, with the occasion of the Bicentennial, in Detroit was arranged a large scale Romanian rug exhibit, which later moved to Chicago and Los Angeles.
       Likewise, in the spring of 1980, a Romanian government exhibit of Folk Art in cooperation with the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor was held there and in Philadelphia and Seattle, Washington. In 1991 was the exhibition at Kent State University.
       At one time, the Romanian government with the cooperation of enterprising businessmen, exported Romanian artifacts, Romanian foods and wines but has ceased to do that because of the poor economic condition of the country.
       New York City boasts one of the largest and most active Romanian communities in America, most of which members arrived after World War. Having fled Communism, with the love of country and democracy, they are generally intent on preserving and promoting Romanian culture in the Greater New York City area.
       The New York Library and Museums house a number of Romanian books and works of art by famous Romanian artists and many folk-art items. There is no doubt that the largest and most representative exhibit of vari¬ous forms of Romanian culture in America was Romania’s participation in the 1939 World’s Far in New York City. With its lavish Pavilion, Romanian House and restaurant, the variety, beauty and intricacy of the whole spectrum of Romanian art and culture awed everyone.
       Built with Romanian marble and alabaster, the spacious building housed Romanian sculptures, paintings and mosaics of famous Romanian artists, plus many folk-art items. As elaborate as this Exhibit was, it lasted only two years, after which the buildings were dismantled and the contents dis¬persed. The bulk of the building ma¬terials and works of art ended up in Cleveland, Ohio, much of which was incorporated in the church complex built there in 1960. Other items were sent to St. Dumitru’s Romanian Orthodox Church in Manhattan which were used to decorate and embellish the chapel, social hall, meeting rooms and offices, making it a jewel of Romanian religious and folk art. Some of the items were donated to the Ro¬manian classroom in the “Cathedral of Learning of the University of Pittsburgh” which was begun in 1929, thus making it one of the most original and representative nationality classrooms.
       In cities with large Romanian communities, there were attempts not only to participate in activities of the American community at large and of other ethnic groups, but also to establish permanent displays and exhibits of Romanian folk art.
       Among the foremost Romanian communities to preserve and promote Romanian culture is the one in Cleveland, Ohio, with its Romanian Orthodox, Greek Catholic and neo-Protestant churches, plus societies and other organizations.
       As early as 1914, St. Mary’s parish participated in community affairs with its church choir, dance group and folk arts programs. The parish participated in international programs in the city throughout the years, setting up books, taking part in parades and other cultural manifestations. The Cleveland Library boasts of one of the largest collections of Romanian books. Especially through the efforts of Theodore Andrica, there are permanent displays of Romanian costumes at the main branch of the library, the Museum of Art and the Western Reserve Historical Society. There is a statue of George Enescu in the Romanian cultural garden. Through the “International Institute and the Nationalities Services Center,” the Romanians periodically par¬ticipated in ethnic cultural affairs.
       Above all, St. Mary’s parish prides itself in building an ultramodern church in the style of the wooden churches of Transylvania. On the premises are to be found a large Romanian “troitza” (wayside cross), a statue by the famous sculptor Oscar Hann and other Romanian works of art.
       The parish houses one of the largest Romanian ethnic museums outside of Romania with a great variety of Romanian folk art items on display, including many from the Anisoara Stan, Gunther, Costa and Hategan collection. There are also many Romanian historical items on display and original paintings by Grigorescu, Luchian, Palade, Ressu and other well-known Romanian artists, plus mosaics by Steriade. The Church hall features a hand beaten cooper frieze depicting the history of the Romanians. There are also paintings by contemporary Romanian artists, ceramics, Ro¬manian furniture and other items. The parish also has quite an extensive li¬brary of Romanian books on various subjects. Truly, Cleveland lives up to its reputation of being one of the foremost Romanian cultural centers of America. Much of the history of the parish during the last 50 years was chronicled and photographed by Louis Martin. An accomplished photogra¬pher, he also traveled to Romania and photographed some of the more important sites, specializing in the portraits of typical Romanian peasants. In the autumn of 1998, he had an exhibit of many of these framed photos, many of which were purchased to be exhibited in homes and elsewhere.
       Detroit, the home of a numerous Romanian community and the site of over ten active Romanian churches of various religious persuasions, has achieved a number of things throughout the years in preserving and promoting Romanian culture.
       St. George Romanian Orthodox Cathedral, built in the style of the churches of Bucovina, has in the past promoted Romanian culture, including folk dance and cultural groups. The premises of the Cathedral are a depository of objects of folk art and a library which contains Romanian language and Romanian topic books from the collections of Deacon Victor Angelescu, Ph.D. Father John Mihut built a beautiful Romanian style church in Warren, Michigan with furniture sculptured in Romania and encourages a multilateral Romanian activity with Romanian folk-dance groups, Romanian classes, sports teams and areas for exhibiting Romanian works of folk art.
       As a common effort, the Romanians of Detroit furnished one room at Wayne State University with Romanian objects and had a fresco painted in 1977 by Father Felix Dubneac.
       For many years, James Crucian had a Romanian radio program for the Detroit area. (As early as 1935, Michael Taylor-Croetoru started a radio program. Lately, George Roman and Aurel Trocea had a radio program, as did the Romanian Baptist church.) Chicago, with Romanians predomi-nantly from Banat, is keen in preserving Romanian culture, participating annually in the Christmas program sponsored by the city, carrying on a Romanian radio program and building up Romanian collections in the local museums and Romanian books in the libraries.
       Aside from New York City, the Los Angeles area has one of the largest and most active Romanian communities in the country. Made up largely of relative newcomers, immersed in the love of the old country and culture, they are carrying on a multifaceted program in promoting Romanian culture, building churches, endowing libraries with Romanian books, organizing artistic and social programs, sponsoring Romanian classes and disseminating information about Romania, her culture and people. The American Romanian Academy of Arts and Science (ARA- was founded in Los Angeles, where it is still located. It publishes books about Romania, sponsors seminars and symposiums throughout the country.
       In Canada, the Romanian communities in Montreal, Toronto and Hamilton are active in promoting Romanian culture. Organized in the “Romanian Association of Canada” in 1952, they participate in a number of Romanian cultural activities. In 1981, they founded a “Romanian Cultural Center” and a “Romanian Village” in 1970 at Val-David, where outings, camps, symposiums and other meetings are held, especially during the summer months. Besides the buildings and pavilions, there are a number of “troitzas” and other Romanian works of folk art scattered throughout the village.
       Another recreational and Romanian cultural facility in Canada is the Camp at Fort Qu’Appelle, Saskatchewan.
       On July 24, 1998 the Romanian community of Boian, Alberta (Canada) celebrated its centenary. Besides religious services, there was a cultural program and demonstrations of the early life of the Romanians in Canada. The Romanian Orthodox parish in Boian has a Romanian ethnic museum housed on its premises.
       No doubt, the most important Romanian cultural center is to be found at the VATRA Romanesca, the national headquarters of the Romanian Orthodox Episcopate of America. In the numerous buildings are treasures of Romanian folk art. On the grounds are also a number of Romanian way-sides (troitzas), monuments, and a cemetery with a chapel. Besides offices and living quarters, there are facilities for national meetings, summer camps and other gatherings.
       The Romanian-American Heritage Center, an independent entity open to all those of Romanian descent, was founded and built through the initiative of Archbishop Valerian D. Trifa in the Vatra’s immediate vicinity, and it houses the greatest collection of printed material on Romanian-American history, open to researchers. An “Information Bulletin” presents the results of the research.
       Ultimately, it is the individual Ro¬manian who makes the preservation. displaying and promoting of Roma¬nian culture in America possible. As far back as 1929 when Christine Galitzi wrote her book, “The Assimilation of Romanians in America,” she was let to know by the many Romanians she interviewed that they displayed certain objects of Romanian folk art. Likewise, Dr. Alexandra Roceric in her book: “Language Maintenance within an American Ethnic Community,” 1982, testifies that many of those interviewed were tied to their heritage by various artifacts of Romanian folk art. The same was noted by Joanne Bock in her book “Ethnic Vision,” 1997.
       There were other individuals who had smaller collections of Romanian art and folk art, which eventually ended up in some museums or institutions for preservation and display. Mrs. Franklin Mott Gunther, the wife of the American ambassador to Romania in the 1930’s, while living in Romania collected many paintings of Romanian artifacts, works of Romanian folk art and of historical value. She brought the collection to America and displayed it for many years in her lav-ish house in Washington D.C. Ultimately, she donated it to St. Mary’s Museum in Cleveland, Ohio.
       Dr. O.K. Costa, a Romanian doctor and avid collector of paintings by famous Romanian artists, was allowed to bring his collection out of Romania after World War I. Aside from the paintings by famous non-Romanian artists, he donated those by Romanian artists (including Grigorescu, Luchian, Ressu, etc.) to St. Mary’s Museum of Cleveland. Dorothy Harkness, a collector of Romanian folk art and author of the book: “Romanian Embroidery, A Dying Folk Art,” donated most of her collection to the “Iuliu Maniu Foundation” of New York City.
       Mihai Marinescu, a collector of paintings by Romanian artists, donated some of them to St. Mary’s Museum in Cleveland and the Palm Beach Museum.
       Ilie Christoloveanu, aside from being a famous portraitist painter, taught Romanian at Columbia University and published a Romanian grammar with reading lessons. Many of his paintings were sent to Romania, with a few in St. Man’s Museum in Cleveland.
       Lucia Kanchegian came to America in 1952 and married Vasile Rusu in 1968. After settling in Lemon Grove, California, they built a home in Romanian-style surrounded by a gate and fence with Romanian motifs. They displayed their collection in their home, which became a little museum of Romanian folk art.
       Nicolae Petra, who immigrated to Cleveland and later moved to Mexico City, built a replica of a Romanian house for his vacation home nearby.
       The parish of Caracas, Venezuela built a replica of a wooden Transylvanian church in 1999.
       Theodore Andrica of Cleveland, a newspaper man, prolific writer on Romanian culture and a catalyst for others to emulate him, founded the “Cultural Association for Americans of Romanian Descent” in 1940, published “The New Pioneer” and later “The Romanian American Review,” in which he highlighted the achievements of Romanians preserving Romanian folk-art. He himself had a large collection of Romanian folk-art and documents pertaining to Romanian-American history, which he donated to the “‘Romanian-American Heritage Center.” Jackson. Michigan, the “Cleveland Public Library” and St. Mary’s Museum.
       In her book “Ethnic Vision,’” Joanne Bock succeeded to identify many individuals with smaller col¬lections of Romanian folk-art who not only display it in their homes, but also continue creating it here in America.
       Though the number of Romanian-Americans interested in Romanian folk art will lose some of their fervor for creating it, preserving it and promoting it, there will also be newcomers interested in it; and, there will be centers, museums, libraries, and other institutions which will have Romanian folk art items on display so that future generations could appreciate and admire them. (Articol preluat din "Information Bulletin" published by the "Valerian D. Trifa" Romanian-American Heritage Center, editor Alexandru Nemoianu)

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Părintele Vasile Haţegan (dr.) cu Episcopul Valerian şi cu Părintele John Trutza (stg) la Vatra

Părintele Vasile Haţegan (dr.) cu Episcopul Valerian şi cu Părintele John Trutza (stg) la Vatra

Cursurile de vară de la Vatra (1954), Părintele Vasile Haţegan cu Dna Preoteasă Cornelia Haţegan (dr), Părintele John Trutza (stg)  si Episcopul Valerian in mijlocul studenţilor.

Cursurile de Vară de la Vatra (1954)
Părintele Vasile Haţegan cu Dna Preoteasă Cornelia Haţegan (dr), Părintele John Trutza (stg) si Episcopul Valerian in mijlocul studenţilor.

PS Valerian si Parintele Vasile Haţegan, delegati la Consiliul Mondial al Bisericilor, Uppsala, Suedia - 1968

PS Valerian si Parintele Vasile Haţegan, delegati la Consiliul Mondial al Bisericilor, Uppsala, Suedia - 1968

Părintele Vasile Haţegan cu IPS Arhiepiscop Nathaniel în mijloc, cu ocazia unei întruniri clericale la Catedrala “Sfănta Maria” din Cleveland (2001)

Părintele Vasile Haţegan cu IPS Arhiepiscop Nathaniel în mijloc, cu ocazia unei întruniri clericale la Catedrala “Sfănta Maria” din Cleveland (2001)

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Despre Părintele Vasile Haţegan:

       Father Haţegan was o prolific writer, and his articles were aimed at educating the young people in their faith. For decades, he sent articles to the Vatra for inclusion into the newspaper. His infamous scribble or by charity, “handwriting”, became known as the “Hategenian Script” to the poor soul who had to type them for the printer. He didn’t write to appease or placate, but to challenge and to exhort. His writings can also be found in the pages of numerous newspapers of his own community and of those of the wider Orthodox word.

IPS Arhiepiscop NATHANIEL
       A man of peace, Father Haţegan always gathered the scattered, helped the poor, the students and the needy. He never forgot the immigrants and visited the sick and suffering.
       He served as the Dean of the Ohio Deanery and Secretary of the Episcopate Council; he supervised the education program of the Vatra Camp and clergy education in the diocese.
       When the relations with the Church of Romania worsen, he supported the ties with the entrance of the Episcopate in the Orthodox Church in America, in a sincere hope for further Orthodox Unity at the national level.
       He was close to Mother Alexandra, Princess of Romania and founder of the first Orthodox women’s convent in America. He help and upheld the late Archbishop Valerian (who often called him: the “metropolitan”)...
       Father Vasile Hategan is now o legend, who interwove in his soul all those who knew him. Legends do not die – they live forever, and so also was Father Vasile Hategan swallowed up in the glory of Christ’s Resurrection, after a lifetime al service to His Holy Church.
Pr. Dr. Remus GRAMA
       With a small original fund, augmented by subsequent contributions from concerned Orthodox believers who had faith in Father Hategan’s enthusiasm and ability, in his retirement, he decided to carry out the mandate given him 50 years ago in New York City to publish a Pan-Orthodox newspaper as a forum of exchange of ideas on unity.
       Thus, with the occasion of the Ecumenical Patriarch Demetrios I visit in America in July, 1990, Father Vasile Hategan, almost single-handedly finally published the first issue of “Orthodox Unity”, which was sent free of charge to 4500 Orthodox clergy and leading lay person.
       This is one of the many projects Father Hategan has taken in his so-called retirement. His is known for his interest in Romanian ethnic affairs, but is also concerned with the future of Orthodoxy in general in North America.
Ziarul "AMERICA"

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