Bishop Matthias Moriak

  • David Lawrence Moriak

Bishop Matthias Moriak is a clergyman in the Orthodox Church of America (OCA). He was selected as the bishop for the OCA’s Diocese of the Midwest (DOM) in 2010, and was consecrated on April 30, 2011.

On August 31, 2012, Moriak revealed that he had been placed on a paid leave of absence while allegations of inappropriate behavior with an adult woman were investigated by the Church. The complainant, an member of the OCA, believed that certain telephone and text communications from the bishop to her crossed personal boundaries. She reported this perceived violation to the Chancery on August 24, 2012. The bishop denied any wrongdoing.

The OCA posted a statement about the allegations on September 5, 2012. The Chancery said that the allegations did not involve physical contact, nor were they criminal in nature.

On November 3, 2012, the OCA’s Synod of Bishops wrote to the clergy and faithful of the DOM, saying that the internal investigation had determined that Moriak had committed sexual misconduct. The letter is linked above. However, the bishops deferred any decision as to whether Moriak should be removed as bishop. Instead, the head of the DOM was to remain on leave until certain conditions were met, one of which was a therapeutic evaluation of his fitness for ministry.

After meeting in March of 2013, the synod asked Moriak to voluntarily retire. Moriak retired from active ministry effective April 15, 2013.

On June 26, 2015, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP) received a phone tip that the bishop was working at an OCA parish in Hermitage, Pennsylvania. The church belongs to the OCA’s Romanian Episcopate. In response to SNAP’s media statement, Moriak was removed from the parish.

In October of 2015 Moriak sued church leaders. The retired bishop alleged that the OCA violated the terms of his retirement and a recent employment agreement when they terminated a parish assignment in response to complaints from SNAP.

A year later, the retired bishop was suspended by the OCA. A copy of the Pastoral Changes for October, 2016, is linked above.

The lawsuit was settled in March of 2017.

The OCA’s Pastoral Changes for May, 2017, reported the Moriak’s suspension was lifted effective March 1, 2017. A copy of the Pastoral Changes is linked above.

Shortly after assuming the helm of the DOM, on August 9, 2011, Moriak dismissed Mark Stokoe, editor of Orthodox Christians for Accountability, from Stokoe’s positions on the OCA’s Metropolitan Council and on the DOM’s Diocesan Council.