V. REV MARK W. KOCZAK
Father Mark was born at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda Maryland, where both his father and mother were serving while in the U.S. Navy. He was baptized at the chapel there and grew up attending Presbyterian churches.
In June 1976, he was chrismated into the Orthodox Church at St. Mark parish in Bethesda, Maryland. He sang in the choir and served as a reader. He received a Bachelor’s of Arts degree in History from the University of Maryland, College Park in 1979.
He married Janet Cunningham at St. Mark’s parish in August 1979. He attended St. Vladimir’s Theological Seminary in Crestwood, New York and received a Master’s of Divinity in 1982.
Ordained to the Holy Deaconate in January 1981 at St. Mark’s parish, Father Mark served as a deacon at the Military Academy West Point and Assumption Orthodox parish in Clifton, New Jersey.
In July 1982, he and Jan moved to California and served at Annunciation Orthodox parish in Santa Maria, California until January 1986. He was ordained to the Holy Priesthood there in February 1984.
He served as an assistant rector of St. Nicholas’s parish in Saratoga, California and as a mission priest for three mission stations in the central valley of California from January 1986 to June 1987.
Father Mark served in the U.S. Air Force as a reserve chaplain from October 1985 to May 1987.
He was commissioned as an active duty chaplain in the U.S. Navy in June 1987. He was stationed at numerous shore duty units as the Orthodox Chaplain including Deputy Command Chaplain National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland and Naval Air Station Oceana in Virginia Beach, Virginia.
He also served as Deputy Command Chaplain USS JOHN F. KENNEDY CV-76, Chaplain 17th Coast Guard District in Juneau, Alaska and Command Chaplain USNS COMFORT during Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Father Mark retired from the Navy in July 2007 after almost twenty-two years of service in the military.
He was attached to St. Mark’s parish and served as a supply priest for Orthodox parishes from Washington to Philadelphia. He is the Chairman of the Mission Board of the Archdiocese of Washington, the Clergy Representative for the Archdiocesan Auditing Committee and a member of the Diocesan Benefactors Fund.
His military awards include four Navy/Marine Corps Commendation Medals, the US Coast Guard Commendation Medal, and two Navy/Marine Corps Achievement Medal along with numerous other awards.
His church awards include Archpriest awarded in 1999 at St. Michael’s Cathedral in Sitka, Alaska and Jeweled Cross awarded in 2010.
During his time in the military, Father Mark visited Romania (where he attended the renewal of the Romanian military Chaplain Corps and met with Patriarch TEOCTIST), Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Greece, Turkey and the country of Georgia (where he met and served with Patriarch ILIA II).
Father Mark has worked for the past eight years as a substitute schoolteacher in New Castle county public schools and since March 2015 as a resource chaplain for Season Hospice of Delaware.