Fr. Seraphim Michalenko, MIC

Stockbridge, Massachusetts


"Mercy is my life"

I have known the Marians of the Immaculate Conception — and Divine Mercy — from my earliest days growing up in Adams, Mass. As a matter of fact, two Marians (including Fr. Walter Pelczynski, MIC, who founded the Association of Marian Helpers) were from my home parish!

During my childhood, when Fr. Walter would come home on vacation, he would always visit my family. Also, Fr. Joseph Jarzebowski, MIC, who brought the Divine Mercy message to America, preached at my parish in the mid-1940s. After he preached, my pastor enshrined the Divine Mercy image in our church — the first such enshrinement in the Western Hemisphere!

Inspired by these Marians, I knew in high school that God was calling me to the priesthood as a Marian. And dedicating my life to spreading Divine Mercy, a work entrusted to the Marians, turned out to be God's plan for me. It was my privilege to work for 20 years as vice-postulator for Sr. Maria Faustina's canonization cause. I give even greater thanks to God for the gift of my vocation with the Marians of the Immaculate Conception.

About Fr. Seraphim Michalenko

Fr. Seraphim Michalenko, MIC, is a familiar face to EWTN viewers from his appearances on instructive and inspirational programs dealing with The Divine Mercy Message and Devotion, as revealed to Saint Maria Faustina Kowalska, has been involved in spreading this message for over 50 years.

He was Rector of the National Shrine of The Divine Mercy and Director of the John Paul II Institute of Divine Mercy, both located in Stockbridge, Massachusetts. For more than 20 years he was Vice-Postulator for North America for the Canonization Cause of Sister Maria Faustina Kowalska, the "Secretary" and "Apostle" of Jesus (The Divine Mercy) and "...God's gift to our time" (Pope John Paul II, canonization homily). He was a witness to the first miracle attributed to Saint M. Faustina's intercession that opened the way for her Beatification in 1993, as well as the coordinator of the efforts that served to verify that miracle and a second one which made possible the adding of the Religious Sister to the list of Saints on April 30th 2000.

A native of Adams, Massachusetts, more than 55 years a professed religious and 50 years a priest, Fr. Seraphim is a member of the St. Stanislaus Kostka Province of the Congregation of Marians of The Immaculate Conception of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary. With licentiate degrees from the Pontifical University of St. Thomas (The Angelicum) and the Pontifical Institute of Eastern Church Studies (The Orientale) in Rome, he lectured for several semesters in the Department of Theology at the Catholic University of America and served in seminary and formation positions for the Marians.

Fr. Seraphim also held various administrative roles in his St. Stanislaus Kostka Province and in the Congregation's Generalate in Rome, as well as pastoral roles in Eastern Rite parishes in Ohio, Pennsylvania and Connecticut. He served as a core-member of the Bethany House of Intercession for Bishops, Priests, and Deacons, a spiritual renewal movement for Catholic clergy in the 1970s, serving priests from all over the world. During the 1980s, after the Holy See lifted the ban on Sister Faustina's writings and forms of Divine Mercy devotions, Fr. Seraphim was called from Bethany House to head the Divine Mercy Department at the Marian Helpers headquarters in Stockbridge, MA. In that position, he wrote series of articles for the Marian Helpers magazine, and supervised the production of various books, pamphlets, and audio-visual materials dealing with The Divine Mercy Message and Devotion and Sister Faustina's writings.

Fr. Seraphim served as theological advisor for the award-winning video docu-drama Divine Mercy—No Escape and for the devotional video Sister Faustina: The Promise of Mercy. He also played a significant role in the production and narration of a video released in 1992, Sister Faustina: The Apostle of Divine Mercy. Then, from November 1991 to October 1995, he served as director of the Association of Marian Helpers under the honorary title "Father Joseph." In this capacity, he supervised the scripting and production of another video, Time for Mercy — released in 1994 by the Marians in conjunction with Marian Communications Ltd., which won a First Place Gold Camera Award in international competition for outstanding creativity in the production of Audio Visual Communications.

In October 1995, Fr. Seraphim was assigned to full time promotion of The Divine Mercy Message and Devotion, participating in Divine Mercy retreats, conferences, and symposia.