Apostolic Succession
Russian Orthodox Lines

1)  I. Sergius,

who later became the patriarch of the Russian Orthodox Church, with Raban Ortinski and Theophilus consecrated Henry Joseph Kleefisch under a “Canon of Necessity” in 1917.

 

2) Henry Joseph Kleefisch.

Kleefisch, an American, was fleeing Russia during the Bolshevik Revolution, and found himself in the company of Archbishop Sergius (later Patriarch of Russia) and two other Orthodox bishops, Raban Ortinski and Theophilus. The four men were stopped by revolutionaries and imprisoned for summary execution. Since Kleefisch was an American, however, they were told that he could go free.

 

Realizing that their execution would literally end the Russian Orthodox Apostolic Succession, Archbishop Sergius asked to be given half an hour of prayer with his bishops and Mr. Kleefisch (who was soon to be released). When they were alone, the Archbishop explained the situation and begged Kleefisch to accept the burden of the episcopacy, with the trust that he would later transmit it to a properly constituted Archbishop for the Russian Orthodox Christians.

 

Stunned by the gravity of the trust, Kleefisch accepted and was consecrated under the Canon of Necessity a When Kleefisch later came to understand the importance of his commission, he willingly shared the lineage of Apostolic Succession for the sake of future unity among the churches.

 

3) Lowell Wadle

In 1945, Henry Joseph Kleefisch exchanged Apostolic Succession with both Lowell Wadle and Charles Hampton who were seeking to protect known Apostolic Lines from going extinct by expanding their spread.

 

By the time of this exchange, Archbishop Wadle had already obtained the Vilatte lines (Malankara Orthodox, Syrian Malabar, and Jacobite Antiochean) from Bishops Boyle and Clarkson, and the Syrian/Melchite Uniate and Byzantine Uniat lines from Archbishop Aneed, who was in Communion with Rome. Archbishop Waddle also obtained the Old Catholic line of Bishops Mathew, De Landas, and Francis from Bishops Verostek and Cooper.

 

Finally, in 1957 Archbishop Wadle traveled to England and obtained the sixteen lines of Mar Georgius I. Kleefisch co-consecrated Charles H. Hampton.t Harbin, Siberia. Shortly thereafter he was released and returned to Europe. Meanwhile, however, the Bolsheviks had decided to release the Russian Archbishop and his companions, and the Russian Church was saved.

 

3)  Charles H. Hampton

was consecrated on September 13th 1931 and, assisted by Bishop Lowell Paul Wadle and Bishop H. Francis Marshall, consecrated Herman Adrian Spruit.

 

4). Herman Adrian Spruit

was consecrated on June 22nd 1957 and with co-consecrators Meri Louise Spruit and Bliss Bellinger  consecrated Paul Michael Clemens.

 

5. Paul Michael Clemens

was consecrated in 1988. Meri Louise Spruit, with co-consecrators Herman Adrian Spruit, Richard Gundrey, and Paul Michael Clemens consecrated Joseph Philip Sousa.

 

6. Joseph Philip Sousa

was consecrated on July 14, 1991. Meri Louise Spruit, assisted by bishops, Richard Gundrey, and Joseph Philip Sousa consecrated Willibrord Johannes Van Campenhout.

 

7. Willibrord Johannes Van Campenhout

was consecrated on October 10th, 1993 and consecrated William Dennis Donovan.

 

8. William Dennis Donovan

was consecrated on November 14th, 1993 and, assisted by Lima, Cover, Reeves, and McCormick, consecrated Robert M. Bowman.

 

9. Robert M. Bowman

was consecrated on April 18, 1996 for the United Catholic Church.