On Bright Saturday, April 22, 2017, His Eminence, Archbishop Benjamin ordained Archdeacon Kirill Sokolov to the Holy Priesthood at Holy Trinity Cathedral, San Francisco, CA. The historic cathedral was filled with worshippers from the parish and the diocese, and beyond, for the Paschal Divine Liturgy. Concelebrants included: His Grace, Bishop Daniel of Santa Rosa; Archpriest Ian MacKinnon, Chancellor of the Diocese of the West; Archpriest John Takahashi, Dean of Holy Trinity Cathedral; Archpriest Chad Hatfield, President of St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary; Archpriest Peter Perekrestov, Dean of Holy Virgin Cathedral – Joy of All Who Sorrow, San Francisco; Archpriest Stephan Meholick; Archpriest George Gray; Archpriest Lawrence Margitich; Archpriest Vladimir Morozov; Priest Philip Halliwell; Priest Andrew Smith; Protodeacon George Golitzin, and Protodeacon Brendan Doss. Numerous priests and deacons were also praying in the temple.
In his address to the newly ordained Archpriest Kirill and his wife, Matushka Sophia, His Eminence spoke about the centrality of love for one’s flock in priestly service. His Eminence noted that Fr. Kirill is the second “native son” of the Cathedral to be ordained to the priesthood (the first having been Saint Sebastian of Jackson and San Francisco). Father Kirill was vested in the paschal vestments worn by his father, Archpriest Victor (Dean of Holy Trinity from 1991 until his repose in 2006), who had also been ordained on Bright Saturday.
Father Kirill was born in Santa Cruz, CA. He grew up at St. Vladimir’s Seminary and, along with his four siblings, in a number of parishes, including Holy Trinity Cathedral. After college graduation, Kirill was recruited by Protopresbyter Thomas Hopko, of blessed memory, to bring his technology skills to St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary in New York. As Fr. Thomas predicted, Kirill worked with the seminary’s systems, took divinity classes, and eventually met his future wife, an extremely talented and lovely seminarian named Sophia. Sophia is a native of Nevada and was baptized while studying at St. John’s College in Santa Fe, NM.
Kirill and Sophia were married in 2003. Kirill was ordained to the Holy Diaconate by Metropolitan Herman on Three Hierarchs’ Day 2004 with then-Bishop Hilarion (Alfeyev) and more than a dozen priests, including now-Bishop Daniel and Fr. Victor, concelebrating. He was asked to remain a permanent diaconal presence at the seminary. The Holy Synod of Bishops elevated him to the dignity of Protodeacon in 2007, and in 2009, to the office of Archdeacon of the Orthodox Church in America.
By 2009, Archdeacon Kirill and Sophia had both graduated seminary, and Fr. Kirill was serving as Associate Chancellor for Systems and Lecturer in Liturgics at the school. Sophia was a regular choir director in the seminary choirs and taught church school and adult education classes. In 2010, Archdeacon Kirill, Sophia, and their sons Nicholas and Gregory moved back to the Bay Area to be closer to family. In 2011 the Sokolovs’ daughter, Juliana, was born, making their family and the world a more beautiful place. Father Kirill was honored to continue serving as a deacon with Archbishop Benjamin and throughout the Diocese of the West, especially at Holy Trinity and in the inspiring nearby parishes of St. Nicholas in San Anselmo and Protection of the Virgin in Santa Rosa.
Father Kirill is Director of Diaconal and Late Vocations for the Orthodox Church in America. He received his doctorate in organizational leadership from Pepperdine University's Graduate School of Education and Psychology this year and continues to work in education.
Archpriest Kirill is assigned to Holy Trinity Cathedral as Associate Priest. His Eminence has indicated his intention to assign Fr. Kirill as Dean of Holy Trinity in 2018, succeeding long-serving current Dean, Archpriest John Takahashi.
A gallery of photographs may be viewed here: https://www.facebook.com/holytrinitycathedral/posts/1509991939012150