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Saint Nicholas' is an Orthodox Christian parish of Russian tradition serving Newcastle and the Hunter Valley.  Our parish includes Belarussians, Ukrainians, Russians, Finns, Macedonians, and Orthodox Christians of other backgrounds. We are a parish of the Australian and New Zealand Diocese of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia, a self-governing part of the Russian Orthodox Church.  We use Church Slavonic, the liturgical language of the Slavic peoples, and English, the language of this country, in our services.  Established in 1952, our parish is the oldest continuously-functioning Orthodox parish in the Hunter Valley.


Saint Nicholas Russian Orthodox Church
3 Irving Street; Wallsend, NSW 2287 Australia
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Visiting our parish


We usually have services on the second and fourth Sundays of each month and on the preceding Saturday evenings.  Please note: During March, April and May 2024 different arrangements will be in place.  Our Schedule of Services can be viewed here.  Our church is generally only open when we have services.  Visitors are always welcome! If you would like to contact us before visiting, it is best to send an email.  We check this inbox regularly and will respond to messages within 24 hours.  You can also contact us in the same way to arrange baptisms and memorial services.

The availability of our parish priest


Our parish priest, Archpriest James Carles, serves here in a voluntary capacity.  He does not live in the  Hunter Region but travels here for services from the Central Coast.  He has secular employment on two days per week and is presently undertaking full-time tertiary study.  In addition to our parish, he has responsibility for Saint Panteleimon Russian Orthodox Church in Gosford and Saint Symeon of Verkhoturye Orthodox Mission on the New South Wales Mid North Coast.  During study periods (in 2024, 19 February-15 June and 22 July-16 November) his pastoral availability is strictly limited to scheduled services in the three communities; individual “needs” that arise in connection with these scheduled services (e.g. confessions, molebens, and memorial services); essential parish administrative tasks; and end-of-life care and funerals.  Father James is available to talk after after Divine Liturgy on the Sundays when we have a service.  He can also be contacted by email.

Supporting our parish


Our parish is a small one that relies on community support and the voluntary service of our clergy to make ends meet.  If you find this website to be of interest or of assistance, please consider helping us.  Donations may be made directly to our bank account:


St Nicholas Russian Orthodox Church 

BSB: 032-509 Account number: 281104


May the Lord bless you!

Forthcoming services and activities
Services on 27-28 July, the Fifth Sunday after Pentecost - 28/07/2024

On Saturday 27 July and Sunday 28 July we will have services for the Fifth Sunday after Pentecost and in honour of Holy Equal-to-the-Apostles Grand Prince Vladimir, Enlightener of the Russian people (+1015 AD), and the Fathers of the First Six Ecumenical Councils.  Matins will be served at 6.00pm on Saturday, and the Hours and Divine Liturgy will be served at 9.00am on Sunday.

Parish Life
Services on 13-14 July, the Third Sunday after Pentecost - 14/07/2024

On Saturday 13 July and Sunday 14 July we had services for the Third Sunday after Pentecost and in honour of All Saints of Russia.  Matins was served on Saturday evening and the Hours and Divine Liturgy were served on Sunday morning.  As is customary on the day of commemoration of All Saints of Russia, the church was beautifully vested in green.  At Divine Liturgy the parish rector was assisted by Deacon Michal Matys and prayers were offered for peace in the Holy Land and the prosperity of the Russian Church.  On Sunday morning our small church was full, with our regular parishioners joined by visitors from the Mid North Coast and by newcomers interested in learning more about the Orthodox Christian faith.

Services on 11-12 July, the commemoration of the Holy, Glorious and All-Praised Leaders of the Apostles, Peter and Paul - 12/07/2024

On Thursday 11 July and Friday 12 July services were held to celebrate the patronal feast of the Diocesan Cathedral of Saints Peter and Paul in Strathfield, NSWAll-night Vigil with the blessing of wheat, wine, oil and five loaves was served on Thursday evening and the Hours and Divine Liturgy were served on Friday morning.  The services on Friday were preceded by the Lesser Blessing of Water and followed by a moleben to the Mother of God and the Holy Preёminent Apostles Peter and Paul with a cross procession around the cathedral.  All the services were held in presence of the wonderworking 'Kursk-Root' Icon of the Mother of God and led by Metropolitan Nicholas of Eastern America and New York, First Hierarch of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia (ROCOR).  This was Metropolitan Nicholas’ first visit to Australia as First Hierarch.  On Friday Metropolitan Nicholas, Bishop George and the clergy of the cathedral were joined by Metropolitan Siluan of the Serbian Orthodox Church, by clergymen accompanying Metropolitan Nicholas, and by Russian and Serbian Orthodox clergy from the Greater Sydney region - including our own parish clergy - and interstate.  A list of participating clergy is available here.  As the other Sydney parishes of our Diocese did not have services and it was during the winter school holidays, a great many people were present.  Following Divine Liturgy it was announced that Bishop George had been elevated to the rank of Archbishop by decision of the ROCOR Synod of Bishops, and a jubilee pectoral cross commemorating the centenary of the ROCOR was presented to cathedral Dean Archpriest George Lapardin in honour of his thirty-five years of service as a clergyman.  Congratulations and gifts were then exchanged.  Upon completion of the services on Friday there was a festive banquet in the church hall for approximately 400 people.

Services on 22-23 June, the Great Feast of Pentecost - 23/06/2024

On Saturday 22 June and Sunday 23 June we had services for the Great Feast of Pentecost.  All-night Vigil with the blessing of wheat, wine, oil and five loaves was served on Saturday evening.  Prior to the service our small church had been beautifully decorated with flowers and green branches in honour of the life-giving Holy Spirit.  On Sunday morning, the Hours and Divine Liturgy were immediately followed by Vespers with the reading of the customary "kneeling prayers".  At Divine Liturgy prayers were offered for the unity of the Orthodox Church, peace in Ukraine and peace in the Holy Land, and the newly-baptised servant of God Cyprian received Holy Communion for the first time.

The baptism of an adult convert to Orthodoxy - 22/06/2024

On Saturday 22 June, the eve of the Great Feast of Pentecost, the parish rector baptised an adult convert to Orthodoxy, Corey Minns.  In baptism Corey took the name Cyprian in honour of Hieromartyr Cyprian of Carthage.  Cyprian had as his sponsor Thaddeus Anthoney.  Afterwards, family members, friends and parishioners gathered in the church hall for a festive BBQ lunch.  We warmly congratulate the newly-baptised servant of God Cyprian, wishing him good health, every blessing from above, and many years!

The funeral and burial of Subdeacon Vitaly Lupish - 21/06/2024

On Tuesday 18 June approximately 200 mourners gathered in our church for the funeral of Subdeacon Vitaly Lupish (+9 June 2024).  Our parish rector conducted the service with the assistance of Deacon Michal Matys.  A visiting choir sang beautifully under the direction of Andrei Lapteff.  Following the service many gathered in the church hall and grounds for refreshments.  The burial at Sandgate Cemetery – delayed as a result of recent heavy rain – took place on Friday 21 June.  That morning, a small group of family members and close friends gathered for a graveside service in the Macedonian section of the cemetery.  Memory eternal!

The repose of Subdeacon Vitaly Lupish - 09/06/2024

On Sunday 9 June we learned with great sadness of the repose, that morning, of Subdeacon Vitaly Lupish.  Vitaly, the eldest son of ever-memorable Archpriest John Lupish, was a founding member of our parish.  An indispensable helper to his father in parish life, he was also the designer of our church and hall, a participant in both building projects, and an active member of the Parish Council.  After the repose of his mother, Matushka Maria, in 1979, he became our choir director.  Tonsured a reader and ordained subdeacon by the ever-memorable Archbishop Paul (Pavlov) in 1984, Vitaly assisted the many clergymen assigned to serve our parish after his father’s repose in 1977.  It is impossible to over-estimate Vitaly's contribution to Saint Nicholas' in the course of over 70 years. In recognition of his long and distinguished service to our parish he received a number of church awards, amongst which were the prestigious Diocesan Cross and the medal commemorating 75 years of our Diocese.  He is survived by his beloved wife Irene and their children Larissa and Alexander and their families, and by his brother John and his family, to whom we offer heartfelt condolences.  Funeral details will be shared in due course.

Services on 8-9 June, the Sixth Sunday of Pascha - 09/06/2024

On Saturday 8 June and Sunday 9 June we had services for the Sixth Sunday of Pascha, the Sunday of the Blind Man.   Matins was served on Saturday evening and the Hours and Divine Liturgy were served on Sunday morning. At Divine Liturgy prayers were offered for peace in Ukraine and peace in the Holy Land.  Following Divine Liturgy a memorial litia was served for the newly-reposed Subdeacon Vitaly Lupish.

Church & Community Life
Youth talk by Metropolitan Nicholas - 24/07/2024

On Wednesday 24 July, His Eminence Metropolitan Nicholas (Olkhovsky) of Eastern America and New York, First Hierarch of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia, will give a talk to youth (ages 14-25) on the Wonderworking “Kursk-Root” Icon of the Mother of God.  The talk will be given at 7.00pm in the parish hall at Saints Peter and Paul Diocesan Cathedral, 3 Vernon Street, Strathfield, NSW.  There will be an opportunity to ask questions of Metropolitan Nicholas, and light refreshments will be provided.

The visit of Metropolitan Nicholas and the 'Kursk-Root' Icon of the Mother of God to the Australian-New Zealand Diocese - 26/07/2024

From Friday 5 July until Friday 26 July, His Eminence Metropolitan Nicholas (Olkhovsky) of Eastern America and New York will make his first visit to our Australian-New Zealand Diocese since his election as First Hierarch of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia.  Accompanying Metropolitan Nicholas will be the Wonderworking “Kursk-Root” Icon of the Mother of God, the Protectress of the Russian Diaspora.  As he will be in our Diocese for a relatively short period of time, Metropolitan Nicholas will only be able to visit parishes in New Zealand, the city of Sydney, and the state of Victoria.  In Sydney he will visit the Kentlyn Convent and the Strathfield, Croydon, Fairfield, Carlton, Centennial Park, and Cabramatta parishes.  A full schedule of planned visits, current as of 5 June 2024, is available here.  The icon will remain in Australia until Thursday 24 October 2024, during which time it is expected that it will visit all the parishes and monastic establishments of the Diocese.  An updated schedule of visits, current as of 24 June 2024, is available here.

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