C-RS Connection 

April 2021



On Sunday, May 2nd, many Orthodox Christians will celebrate Easter. Orthodox Easter is celebrated in many parts of the world including Eastern Europe, America, Canada, and other parts of the world where Rusyns live.

To Orthodox Christians, honoring tradition and maintaining an intact religious identity is crucial.

Easter is based on the first Sunday after the first full moon on or after the vernal (spring) equinox. The base date, however, is found on two different calendars: Western churches use the Gregorian calendar, now a standard for much of the world. Orthodox churches use the older Julian calendar. Calculating these dates involves an array of ecclesiastical moons and paschal full moons, the astronomical equinox, and the fixed equinox in addition to the two different calendar systems.

The Eastern Orthodox Church sets the date of Easter according to the actual, astronomical full moon and the actual equinox as observed along the meridian of Jerusalem, site of the Crucifixion and Resurrection. It also applies the formula so that Easter always falls after Passover, since the Crucifixion and Resurrection of Christ took place after He entered Jerusalem to celebrate Passover.

The Western church uses a fixed date, March 21, for the vernal equinox. It also uses the full moon, but this “ecclesiastical moon” is based on tables created by the church. These constructs allow the date of Easter to be calculated in advance rather than being determined by actual astronomical observances.

Orthodox Easter brings with it the beautiful spring season, full of happiness and positivity, with the hope of prosperity and success. The C-RS Board joins me in wishing you and your loved ones a warm, happy, and blessed Easter. Christos Voskrese!

Maryann Sivak

C-RS National President


Welcome to our newest C-RS members. The following list of names reflects new members who have joined (or have been reinstated) since March 15, 2021. Please review the list - you just might find someone you know. 

    • Artie Abelowitz – Melrose, MA
    • Stephanie Borellis – Buffalo, NY
    • Patricia Boris - Brooklyn Park, MN
    • Katherine Chave, Indiana, PA
    • Anne Colombo – Newtown, PA
    • Johna Cook - Portland, ME
    • John Doyle – Barkhamsted, CT
    • Susan Enholm – Tucson, AZ
    • Steven Fine - Bowie, MD
    • Julia Gyourko – Swarthmore, PA
    • Corinne Harrington-Booth – Millsboro, DE
    • Jennifer Hoiper – Penfield, NY
    • Philippe Horinecki – Faimes Brussels
    • James Joseph Kavajecz - Spicer, MN
    • William Kish – Johnstown, PA
    • Mary Kuna – Mechanicsburg, PA (Reinstated)
    • Judith Lanzenodrfer – Delaware, OH
    • W Michael Latzo – Hicksville, NY
    • Marcel Lepage – Rollinsford, NH
    • Rosemary Pavlina - Crown Point, IN
    • Jacqueline Petricha Silipigni – Somers, NY
    • Joanne Petronko – Frenchtown, NJ
    • Matthew Power – Hamilton, NJ
    • Jed Schoucair - King of Prussia, PA

    • Barbara Skubick -Scranton, PA (Reinstated)
    • Nancy Spence - Overland Park, KS
    • Elizabeth Spurlock – Norcross, GA
    • Betty Staniulis – Darien, CT (Reinstated)
    • Jessica Stoyko -Oxford, OH
    • Janet Vuksta James - Delaware, OH
    • Sara Yassin – Gaithersburg, MD
    • Jacqueline York -Rocky River, OH
    • Robert Semenak -Chardon, OH

    Again, we welcome these new members and look forward to a lasting relationship.  We hope they become involved by bringing their talents and skills to the C-RS. 


    Dear Carpatho-Rusyn Society Member:

    The 2021 Nominating Committee is currently seeking names of members in good standing who you feel could lead our organization as members of the National Board of Directors. When nominating a candidate, please include 3-4 sentences about what this member would bring to the nominated position; i.e. skills, talent, etc. All nominated members will be contacted by the committee regarding their interest in being placed on the ballot as a candidate. Please note: with the availability of various media sources, nominees can now live anywhere in the United States or Canada.



    Nominations may be submitted to the nominations committee by;

    • Email at membership@c-rs.org (preferred), or
    • Postal mail to - Carpatho-Rusyn Society, Attn: Nominations Committee, 915 Dickson Street, Munhall, PA 15120-1929
    • Please account for delivery time when submitting through postal mail, so it is received by the deadline. For email submissions, please use BOD Nomination in the subject line.

    Nominees for the Board must:

    • Be current in their dues payment; 
    • Be able to participate in monthly board meetings via teleconferencing or other media sources;
    • Have internet access and be comfortable communicating via email, teleconferencing, or other media sources;
    • Be able to actively participate on assigned committee(s),
    • Be able to fulfill their fiduciary duties to the organization;
    • Be able to participate in any fundraising for the organization, and
    • Be familiar with and comply with the C-RS by-laws. (A link to the by-laws can be found on the homepage of the C-RS website.)

    Nominations can be made for the following Board positions. Note, a nominee may be nominated for more than one position, and that nominee can confirm what position he/she may be interested when contacted by the committee.

    • President: Chief executive officer of the organization, shall preside at all BOD meetings, represent the society as appropriate and have general supervision of and general management of the affairs of the organization.
    • Vice-President: Exercises the powers and duties of the President when called on to do so.
    • Recording Secretary: Takes official minutes of all meetings; maintains all corporate documents including meeting minutes, records and reports; provide notices and documentation as required by the by-laws or the Board.
    • Chief Financial Officer: Generates and maintains financial records; oversees budgeting, accounting, and investments; pays bills and invoices; responsible for filing taxes; custodian of contracts and business records.
    • Chief Financial Administrator: Deposits financial vehicles and non-financial valuable effects of the organization; maintains depository records; reports regularly to the board.
    • Chief Information Officer: Oversees electronic membership records; supervises general mailings; helps the organization with its information technology needs.
    • Trustee (six positions): Actively participates in day-to-day business of C-RS through fundraising and actively serves on board committees; audits the financial books annually.

    For further details or with any questions please contact the committee at membership@c-rs.org or phone 412-567-3077 and leave a message. You will receive a response as soon as possible.

    Yours in Rusyn Unity,

    C-RS Nominations Committee


    Last fall, members of the Cleveland chapter planted dozens of daffodil bulbs in the Rusin Garden. The flowers emerged this Spring and graced the garden with bright yellow blooms!  

    All gardens in the Cleveland Cultural Gardens will participate in the annual spring clean-up which takes place on Earth Day (April 24) from 11am - 2pm. Bring your garden tools and wear old clothes. You may bring a relative or friend to make the work easier.  The garden is located on 930 East Blvd, Cleveland in the University Circle area.

    If you want more information, such as directions, you may contact Marcia at (440) 331-3856 or email her at mbenko@prodigy.net.       

    We are quite proud of our garden and appreciate the help of our volunteers.      

    Pictured are members Marcia Benko and John Krenisky.  


    The Anna Donson Memorial Scholarship, in its fifth year, will be once again offering a $1000.00 scholarship. The committee consists of Dr. Paula Donson, Paul Lohin, Pamela Hemzik, Sarah Latanyshyn, Dr. Dolores Fidishun, Elizabeth Diles, Cathie McAdams and Sharon Jarrow.

    The aim of the scholarship is to assist students who themselves are members of the Carpatho-Rusyn Society, or who would advance the Carpatho-Rusyn culture, language, or tenets of the Carpatho-Rusyn Society. The purpose of this $1000.00 scholarship is to recognize and provide financial assistance to an outstanding student enrolled in a higher education program (2 or 4-year duration or graduate program) or any accredited institution that offers certified academic, professional, technical, or vocational training.

    The scholarship wishes to encourage and highlight the excellent contributions that our Rusyn people are making to their communities and beyond. The scholarship also intends to accelerate the advancement of our young Carpatho-Rusyn population, expanding the development of our Carpatho-Rusyn citizens, within their community and state through higher education, advanced learning, and professional academic or vocational work.

    The Anna Donson Memorial Scholarship application form and criteria are available online at the Carpatho-Rusyn Society website: www.c-rs.org Go to HIGHLIGHTS on the home page, click on the 2021 Donson Scholarship button from the The Anna Donson Memorial Scholarship, scroll to the bottom of page, and click on the application button to print the application form (also posted is the Scholarship Description and Criteria).

    Dr. Paula Donson



    Calling all genealogists! 

    Research on our Carpatho-Rusyn athlete project is progressing as our list is rapidly approaching 50 athletes. Some of these nominees still need to be vested (fact checked) as to insure that their ancestral home towns listed are located in the recognized Carpatho-Rusyn homeland. We are continuing to search for more definitive information about the six nominees below. If you can help, please contact me at George.pawlush@wilkes.edu.

    Norm Larker, MLB baseball

    He was born in Beaver Meadows (Hazleton), PA in 1930. His mother’s name was Susan Zeleznock, who was born in the USA. Her parents, Michael and John Zeleznock, came from Slovakia. Larker played with the Dodgers and Giants from 1958 to 1963.

    Steve Swetonic, MLB baseball

    Born in Mt. Pleasant, PA (1903), he died in Canonsburg, PA (1970). His father, John Swetonic Sr, and mother, Susan Bushick, were both born in Austria, 1862 and 1864 respectively. Steve Jr. played with the Pittsburgh Pirates from 1929 to 1935.

    Bernie Kosar, NFL football

    He was born in Youngstown, OH. His parents attended St. Mary’s Byzantine Catholic Church. He played for the Cleveland Browns, Dallas Cowboys, and Miami Dolphins from 1985 to 1996.

    Andy Uram, NFL Football

    Was a star football player at the University of Minnesota and later with the Green Bay Packers from 1938 to 1943. He was born 1915 in Minneapolis. His parents, Andrew Uram Morin and Mary Uram Morin, came from Austria-Hungary

    Johnny Logan, MLB baseball

    Johnny grew up in Endicott, NY. His mother was Anna Senko (1896-1997) He played in the MLB from 1951 to 1963, mostly for the Milwaukee Braves.

    Ed Vargo, MLB umpire

    He was a major league umpire from 1960 to 1983. Vargo (1929 to 2008) was born and died in Canonsburg, PA. His maternal grandfather, Michael Hunka, and grandmother, Pearl Palan/Paluha were both born in Austria. They married in Feinstein Sambour, Galicia in 1899.


    Do you have questions about where your Baba came from? Where to find records in Europe? Or stateside information about your family here in America? Where to begin? Where to find resources?

    Let us be one of those resources! A team of genealogy research experts can be found at the C-RS genealogy forum. 

    To access the Forum:

    • From the C-RS website. www.c-rs.org home page, scroll down to the “Genealogy” icon (link) and click.
    • You will be directed to the “Genealogy” page, please read the terms & conditions.
    • Scroll down to the “Join Genealogy Discussion Form” button at the bottom of the page and click.
    • You will be asked to log in with your email address and password, the discussion form and the recent forum update page will appear.
    • You have the option to either reply to an existing topic or create a new topic. 
      • For new topics click on the “Topic” button and enter the subject and topic content (body). Note: To prevent spam you will be asked “I’m not a robot”, respond accordingly.
      • To reply to an existing post, click on the topic title from the list, and then click on the “Reply” button to enter your response.
    • Then click the “Post” button.

    Attachments can be included as part of the reply or topic, i.e. pictures and/or documents. To insert an attachment:

    • Click on the “Choose files” button at the bottom of the page.
    • Select the file(s) to be attached. Up to 20 files can be uploaded. Each file should be less than 20 MB.
    • When complete, click on the “Post” button
    C-RS Genealogy Forum


    Here's an update on your genealogy programs:

    Queries continue to grow on the Genealogy forum. Those on the committee are here to help while also encouraging others to add their valuable insights.  Not only are there queries about villages, but specifics about families.

    So what are we communicating about on the forum? Questions have been coming in on such villages as Lubnya, Verkhovyna Bystry, Czszyn, Wolosate, Porac, Zolotarevo, Zboj, and Vysna Jablonka to name a few. One asks “What about that residence on 425 S. Washington St, Scranton that passenger manifest after manifest Ruthenians list as there final destination? What was there in early 1900’s? Why did my grandparents leave their village to come to America? Where do I find that Hungarian Census people are talking about? These questions are seriously reflected upon and answered.

    In-depth information can be found on Slovakian genealogy research and by searching "Stephen Morse ship manifests" by Bill Tarkulic. Tom Peters and Barb Popovich have quickly answered queries on early birth, death, and marriage records on a grandparent or great grandparent. Where do they find all this information you ask? That could be another Connection article!

    A recent proposal made on the forum was for others to participate in an interesting research project to see what naming traditions were observed in your villages. It’s apparent we hold differing thoughts on how our female ancestors were named. Beautiful old Rusyn names, some of which are no longer in use are noted. What are your thoughts? Go to the Forum and join in!!!

    Other happenings to note: Bill Takulich hosted a provocative program on Czechoslovakia: Behind the Iron Curtain presented by authors Zuzana Palovic and Gabriela Bereghazyova. It was an excellent program and a great way to spend a Saturday afternoon with fellow Rusyns. Other exciting programs to follow.

    Upcoming genealogy programs: Tom Peters, Under the Onion Domes: Those Mysterious Carpatho-Rusyns, February 3 from 7-8 p.m. in conjunction with Wilkes College via Zoom. Learn about the critical information needed to find records in the ancestral homeland and information on family odyssey. Information being broadcast to members.

    NEW feature sponsored by the Genealogy Committee, “LET'S TALK RUSYN GENEALOGYsessions throughout the year. Sessions will begin Wednesday, February 10 with Bill Tarkulich’s topic of “Research in Slovakia.” These free Zoom presentations will be open to all members. There will be a short session on the research topic followed by audience question and answers. More information to follow.

    2021 Genealogy LEARN AND CHAT Sessions

    2021 – DISCUSSION

    2nd Wed of Month.  1.5 hours 7:30-9PM

    15-minute Speaker



    Zuzana Palovic

    Behind the Iron Curtain

    February (members only)

    Bill Tarkulich

    State of Slovakia Research

    April 14

    Chris Black


    June 9

    Barb Popovich

    Poland Research

    August 11

    Chris Black

    Ukraine Research

    September 8

    Sharon Jarrow

    Travel in Ukraine

    November 10



    May 12, 2022

    Mary Osborne

    I’m a Boyko!


    As you may know, the Carpatho-Rusyn Society Heritage Program is now part of the Rusyn.fm family. Rusyn.fm is an internet based Rusyn radio station in Slovakia.

    The broadcast is under the main title of ГОЛОСЫ РУСИНІВ АМЕРИКЫ / HOLOSŶ RUSYNIV AMERYKŶ / VOICE OF RUSYNS IN AMERICA, but is still known as The Carpatho-Rusyn Society Heritage Program.

    The program can be heard on Sunday afternoons at 3:30 pm Eastern Time. Rusyn.fm can be accessed through any computer with internet access or as a smartphone application.

    To listen, visit Rusyn.fm. To listen live at broadcast time, please click: rusyn.fm/play
    To listen to any of the archives, please visit our media page: 


    The Southeastern States Branch has been significantly growing. Therefore, it has become necessary to divide the Southeastern Branch into the Georgia Branch, Florida Branch and Carolinas (N&S) Branch on our website. If you have any friends or relatives who might be interested, please let them know. Have them visit our website under "Chapters" and they just need to click “join email list.” Contact Bonnie at bb@c-rs.org for additional information.

    Carpatho Rusyn Society Heritage Program

    Hosted by: Dean Poloka

    Sundays 3:30 - 4:00 p.m.  (Eastern U.S. time)

    Host Dean Poloka is a master choreographer and ethnic researcher of traditional Carpatho-Rusyn music, song and dance.

    For more information:  https://c-rsmedia.org/radio-site/ 

    Listen Live

    Southeast Zoom Meeting

    April 25, 7-8PM

    This meeting is open to members and non-members in the states of Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi and Tennessee. If you know anyone living in those states who might be interested, please share this information.

    In March, a Zoom meeting was held with Florida members and in May, a meeting will be held with those living in the states of North and South Carolina.

    Please check the Events Calendar for details.

    Let's Talk Rusyn Genealogy - C-RS Virtual Series

    featuring Tom Peters, retired genealogist

    May 12, 7:30-9PM

    Join us for a chat and learn explaining how a retired former professional genealogist approaches a Rusyn genealogy research request.

    Open to the public - tell your friends and family!!!


    Copyright © 2021 Carpatho-Rusyn Society. All rights reserved.
    915 Dickson St.
    Munhall, PA 15120
    (412) 567-3077

    The Carpatho-Rusyn Society (C-RS) is a national 501(C)(3) organization founded in Pittsburgh, PA in 1994. As stated in our mission statement, the C-RS is dedicated to manifesting Carpatho-Rusyn culture in the United States and supporting Rusyn culture in the homeland in east central Europe. Information about joining C-RS and a membership application may be obtained on the C-RS membership website at https://carpathorusynsociety.wildapricot.org.