In Memoriam: Archimandrite Elias Bitar

21 May 2020 • In Memoriam

With hope in the resurrection, we share news of the repose of The Right Rev. Archimandrite Elias Bitar, an alumnus and retired faculty member of St. Vladimir’s Seminary. Father Elias reposed in the Lord May 21, 2020 after long suffering with health conditions.

Father Bitar leaves behind a lifelong legacy as “the voice of the Antiochian Orthodox Archdiocese of North America.” During his nearly forty years in the priesthood, he served as lecturer in liturgical music (with a specialty in Byzantine music) and practical theology at St. Vladimir's Seminary, vicar general of the Archdiocese, and the residing priest for churches in California and New Jersey. Father Elias studied for his Master of Divinity degree at St. Vladimir's from 1972–1975, and subsequently earned a Doctor of Ministry from the Seminary in 2001.

Father Elias Bitar is survived by his children Katrina (St. Vladimir's Seminary Class of 2009), Sr. Ignatia, Martha, Mikey, Antony, and Madeleine, as well as his grandchildren Zachary, Jacob, Samia, and another granddaughter on the way. 

He is reunited in the heavenly kingdom with his wife, Kh. Joanne, and his parents, Sadallah and Zahwe Bitar.

In lieu of flowers, kindly send all donations to The Monastery of St. Nina in Union Bridge Maryland, where Fr. Bitar resided. His funeral will be streamed online. More information may be found on the Antiochian Archdiocese website.

 May his memory be eternal!


(The photo and information in this article have been reprinted from