Brooklyn, N.Y. – Father Canon Thomas C. Machalski, Jr., pastor of St. Josaphat’s parish, Bayside, and adjutant judicial vicar on the Diocesan Tribunal, has been appointed Chancellor and Rector of SS. Cyril and Methodius Seminary, St. Mary’s Preparatory, and the Orchard Lake Polish Mission, by His Excellency Archbishop Allen H. Vigneron, Archbishop of Detroit, effective July 1, 2011.
Father Machalski was also elected Chancellor of Orchard Lakes Schools by the Board of Regents. That appointment is effective Jan. 1, 2012. Orchard Lake Schools is comprised of SS. Cyril and Methodius Seminary, St. Mary’s Preparatory High School, and the Polish Mission, a project which seeks to preserve and propagate Polish culture in the United States. Born from the vision and needs of Polish-Catholic immigrants, the Orchard Lake Schools were established in 1885 with the expressed mission of sustaining the Catholic faith tradition of Polish immigrants.
Father Machalski was raised in Maspeth, where he attended Holy Cross School. He is an alumnus of St. Mary’s Preparatory, Class of 1976, and St. Mary’s College, Class of 1980. He holds a Masters of Divinity degree from Seminary of the Immaculate Conception, Huntington, a Master’s of Science in Education degree from Fordham University, and a Licentiate in Canon Law from the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C.
Prior to his ordination, he spent a summer at Catholic University, Lublin, Poland, in a program of Polish language and culture.
He was ordained May 18, 1985 by Bishop Francis J. Mugavero at St. James Cathedral Basilica, Downtown Brooklyn. He has served as an assistant at SS. Cyril and Methodius, Greenpoint, 1985-91; administrator at Our Lady of Czestochowa-St. Casimir, Sunset Park, 1991-93; and parochial vicar at Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament, Bayside, 1993-97. He has been pastor of St. Josaphat since 2007.
Since 1997, he has served on the Diocesan Tribunal as an adjutant judicial vicar and has also served as Second Instance Judge tribunal of the Eparchy of St. Maron of Brooklyn.
He has chaired the annual diocesan Polish Heritage Day and is a member of the Ecumenical Commission on Dialogue with the Orthodox, as well as a member of the Seminary Admissions Board and the national Polish-American Priests’ Association, where he has served two terms as President.
He also teaches at the Pastoral Institute in the diocesan diaconate preparation program.
In 2005, the Archbishop of Lublin bestowed upon Father Machalski the title of Honorary Canon of the Chapter of Canons of the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist and St. John the Baptist in Lublin, Poland.
“It is not going to be easy to leave the diocese of Brooklyn,” Father Machalski said. “I have tried to serve faithfully for 26 years. It is going to be particularly difficult to leave my parishioners of St. Josaphat’s in Bayside, but I feel that God is leading me to now devote my priestly ministries to the wider church since the seminary educates men for dioceses throughout the United States.”
Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio added, “Father Machalski is one of the finest priests of our diocese and has been a long-time proponent of Polish culture and heritage and a leader in the community.”