St. Herman Orthodox Christian Church was established as a mission parish of the Serbian Orthodox Diocese of Western America at the Feast of Pentecost, in June of 2014. The formal blessing of the parish by our diocesan hierarch, Bishop Maxim, came as a timely and loving response to nearly fours years of hard work and prayer on the part of the faithful of St. Herman’s, as well as the missional vision and sacrifice of Fr. Russell Radoicich and his family in Butte, Montana. St. Herman’s humble beginnings could not stop priest nor parishioners from working hard to transform the little community from being the fellowship of a few faithful, gathered in a tiny apartment, into a diverse and dynamic, growing church family.
God’s incredible blessing has been apparent at every stage of the journey for our young community. St. Herman’s has now opened yet a new chapter by transforming an old, rundown church on Kalispell’s Westside into a beautiful Orthodox Christian Temple, blessed by Bishop Maxim and hallowed by the celebration of the Divine Liturgy, the presence of sacred relics and the ordination of a priest. Now, with everything needful in place, the Faithful of St. Herman’s look to the future with hope and joy.
The outward goal of our community is the same as it has always been for every local manifestation of Christ’s Church since our Lord’s commandment at His Ascension on the Mount of Olives –to transform the world by going out “into all the world, and preach[ing] the Gospel to the whole creation,” (Mark 16:15) and by making disciples of all, “baptizing them in the of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit” (Matthew 28:19). The inner mission of St. Herman’s, for every soul –both priest and parishioner –is to be “transformed by the renewing of your minds” (Romans 12:2). To become “heirs of God and fellow heirs of Christ” (Roman’s 8:17). And, most importantly, to become “partakers of the Divine nature” (2 Peter 1:4), as we all strive together to “take up our cross and follow” our Lord (Matthew 16:24). As Orthodox Christians and members of the Body of Christ, we go about this vocation with fear and trembling, and yet with hope, sustained by the truth that as Christ promised, He has built His Church and “the gates of hell shall not prevail against her” (Matthew 16:18).