Sonora, California, September 26, 2022
The former head of the Christ the Savior Brotherhood, who helped bring hundreds if not thousands of souls into holy Orthodoxy, has reposed in the Lord.
Fr. Maximos, better known as Vincent Rossi before becoming a monastic, reposed on Friday evening at St. Silouan the Athonite Monastery (ROCOR) in Sonora, California, on the eve of the monastery’s patronal feast, report the North American Thebaid and several others connected with the monastery.
Fr. Maximos had been a novice and then a riassaphore monk at the monastery since 2015. Awaiting his departure, on Sunday, September 18, Father received Holy Communion and Holy Unction celebrated by six priests, and was tonsured a stavrophore monk by Abbot Damascene of St. Herman’s Monastery in Platina, California.
Fr. Maximos then received Holy Communion every day leading up to his repose on Saturday.
In the 1970s, Fr. Maximos, then Vincent Rossi, was a member of the esoteric group the Holy Order of MANS, which combined Christian doctrine and spirituality with various New Age influences. He became the leader of the group following the death of its founder Earl Blighton in 1974, and under his direction, the Order gradually turned away from its New Age practices.
Rossi’s spiritual search eventually led him to the writings of Fr. Seraphim (Rose), through which he felt that Fr. Seraphim himself was calling him to Orthodoxy. The Order later made contact with Abbot Herman (Podmoshensky) and St. Herman’s Monastery in Platina, which had been co-founded by Fr. Seraphim.
Continuing the movement towards Orthodoxy, in 1988 the Holy Order of MANS transformed into the Christ the Savior Brotherhood (CSB) and joined the non-canonical Archdiocese of Vasiloupolis (Queens, New York) under “Metropolitan” Pangratios (Vrionis), a defrocked former priest of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese.
In 1991, Rossi resigned as Director-General of the CSB and moved to England to pursue a doctoral degree in Orthodox Studies at the University of Oxford under Metropolitan Kallistos (Ware).
Individual CSB members and parishes moved into canonical jurisdictions throughout the 1990s, and in 2000, under the guidance of Abbot Gerasim of St. Herman’s Monastery, they moved en masse into canonical jurisdictions, mainly the Serbian and Bulgarian Churches and the Orthodox Church in America.
Rossi was later involved with the short-lived Rose Hill Orthodox great books college, and also served as Director of Education for the American Exarchate of the Jerusalem Patriarchate. He authored two books and nearly a hundred articles on theology, spirituality, and the environment.
He spent the last years of his life as a monastic at St. Silouan’s Monastery in Sonora, where he reposed in the Lord on Friday evening.