Saints Peter and Paul Russian Orthodox Church has been a cornerstone of Bayonne for over 100 years, offering spiritual guidance to people from many backgrounds who seek to follow Orthodox faith.
This parish can trace its heritage back to immigrants from Southeastern Europe who joined the larger movement of tens of thousands returning to Orthodoxy in North America.
History of the Church
Saints Peter and Paul Russian Orthodox Church is the second oldest Slavic Orthodox Church in New Jersey, consisting largely of descendants of Eastern European immigrants. As part of its self-governing body within the Orthodox Church in America, its congregation enjoys a vibrant spiritual heritage.
The church is dedicated to the glory of God and the teaching of the Gospel, upholding Orthodox faith according to canons of the Russian Orthodox Church. As part of the Diocese of New York and New Jersey of Orthodox Church in America, which includes over seven hundred parishes, missions, monasteries, and institutions throughout North America, Canada, and Mexico, it adheres to these same canons.
In 1916, the church was officially founded. Two resident priests served the congregation at that time – Reverend Jacob Korchinsky and Rev. Peter Semashko.
Saints Peter and Paul Russian Orthodox Church has been the spiritual home to thousands of people in northeastern New Jersey since 1907. Here, the ancient faith remains at the core of daily life.
The church offers a variety of services: Divine Liturgy (Mass) on Sundays, Vespers and Matins on Saturdays, as well as Confessions on Tuesdays. Furthermore, there are numerous social events held throughout the year.
One of the unique features of this building is its onion-shaped domes. These were constructed by immigrant homesteaders who settled in Bramble, Minnesota during the early 1900s.
The church facade is of Gothic-Revival design in sandstone. Its center Royal Doors were inspired by Saint Nicholas Cathedral in New York City and imported oil-painted icons for an Iconostasis, or screen, that separates the altar (sanctuary) from other parts of the church. Bells are installed in towers to summon worshippers for service.
For its parishioners, the church hosts a range of social events. These include an annual Ethnic Dinner and Easter and Christmas bake sales.
The congregation also holds a monthly Russian language class. This is an enjoyable opportunity for Russian-speaking individuals to gain more insight into the language and culture of their ancestors.
Additionally, there are numerous events for both children and adults alike. These include religious education classes, choir practice and evening Bible studies.
Pastor Royer noted that the church has maintained a significant presence in Bayonne for decades. While some Catholic churches have closed, Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church has remained resilient, according to Pastor Royer.
The church also hosts a number of foreign visitors from Ukraine and other parts of Europe, Asia and Africa. These guests play an integral role in Bayonne’s cultural life as they help the church foster friendships within its local community. Bayonne takes great pride in sharing its heritage with all who visit it.
Saints Peter and Paul Russian Orthodox Church, situated in Bayonne’s heart, has been a spiritual home to thousands of people of all cultures since 1907. As part of the Diocese of New York and New Jersey of the Orthodox Church in America, it offers not only an inspiring place of worship but also opportunities for friendships that will last.
The church is host to various activities and organizations. For instance, Sunday school is a vibrant program with over forty children from prekindergarten through high school enrolled. Furthermore, there is an elegant nursery available as well.
The church’s onion-domed main sanctuary is an impressive sight. It also hosts its signature event: Matins at 8:15 AM followed by coffee hour. If you would like more information about our community, please fill out the form below.