In 1992, after the end of the Cold War with Russia, Episcopal churches  were invited to form parish partnerships to support the burgeoning re-opening of Russian Orthodox churches. Answering the call, the Miami Valley Episcopal Russian Network (MVERN) was formed by a group of dedicated Dayton volunteers and was linked with St. Nicholas Russian Orthodox Church in Sablino, Russia. Soon other area churches joined and MVERN became the largest parish partnership in the country, consisting of thirteen churches (11 Episcopal and 2 Orthodox). Since then, MVERN  has sponsored adult pilgrimages, youth mission trips, exchanges and contributed financial support to strengthen the programs of St. Nicholas.

This year MVERN celebrates 20 years of a cultural and spiritual relationship between the 13 Ohio churches and St. Nicholas.Marking this event, we have planned a Russian White Nights Celebration on Sunday, June 26, at St. George’s Episcopal Church, 5520 Far Hills Ave, Dayton, at 4:30 p.m. Former travelers and friends are invited for a Russian dinner, entertainment by Russian dancers and your chance to meet Fr. Nikolai and Dr. Igor Tolochin, as well as a joyous reunion for hosts and travelers alike.

You are invited to renew friendships and celebrate MVERN’s many accomplishments. Reservations ($35 per person) can be made online ( or checks should be sent to MVERN (5065 Rolling Woods Trail, Kettering, OH 45429) before June 22.

On Saturday, June 25, there also will be a Pizza Party for former MVERN youth travelers for pizza and conversation with Fr. Nikolai and Igor.  Come for a 5 p.m.  Vespers and stay for pizza  at St. Paul the Apostle Orthodox Church, 4451 Wagner Rd, Dayton.  Reservations are not required.