Stephen Yavorsky
Stefan Yavorsky (1658–1722) was an archbishop
An archbishop is a bishop of higher rank, but not of higher sacramental order above that of the three orders of deacon, priest , and bishop...

 and statesman in the Russian Empire
Russian Empire
The Russian Empire was a state that existed from 1721 until the Russian Revolution of 1917. It was the successor to the Tsardom of Russia and the predecessor of the Soviet Union...

, of Ukrainian descent, one of the ablest coadjutors of Peter the Great
Peter I of Russia
Peter the Great, Peter I or Pyotr Alexeyevich Romanov Dates indicated by the letters "O.S." are Old Style. All other dates in this article are New Style. ruled the Tsardom of Russia and later the Russian Empire from until his death, jointly ruling before 1696 with his half-brother, Ivan V...

 and the first president of the Most Holy Synod
Most Holy Synod
The Most Holy Governing Synod was the highest governing body of the Russian Orthodox Church between 1721 and 1918, when the Patriarchate was restored. The jurisdiction of the Most Holy Synod extended over every kind of ecclesiastical question and over some that are partly secular.The Synod was...


Born in Yavoriv
Yavoriv is a city located in the Lviv Oblast of western Ukraine. It is the administrative center of the Yavoriv Raion and rests approximately 50 km west of the oblast capital, Lviv....

 near Lviv
Lviv is a city in western Ukraine. The city is regarded as one of the main cultural centres of today's Ukraine and historically has also been a major Polish and Jewish cultural center, as Poles and Jews were the two main ethnicities of the city until the outbreak of World War II and the following...

, Yavorsky was educated at the Kyiv-Mohyla Academy and various other schools of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth
Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth
The Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth was a dualistic state of Poland and Lithuania ruled by a common monarch. It was the largest and one of the most populous countries of 16th- and 17th‑century Europe with some and a multi-ethnic population of 11 million at its peak in the early 17th century...

. Becoming a monk, he settled at the Kiev Academy as a preacher and professor, being appointed prefect of the institution and prior of the monastery of St. Nicholas. He attracted the attention of Peter I by his funeral oration over the boyar
A boyar, or bolyar , was a member of the highest rank of the feudal Moscovian, Kievan Rus'ian, Bulgarian, Wallachian, and Moldavian aristocracies, second only to the ruling princes , from the 10th century through the 17th century....

 Aleksei Shein
Aleksei Shein
Aleksei Semyonovich Shein , Russian commander and statesman, the first Russian Generalissimus, boyar, great-grandson of Mikhail Shein....

, and was made archbishop
An archbishop is a bishop of higher rank, but not of higher sacramental order above that of the three orders of deacon, priest , and bishop...

 of Ryazan
Ryazan is a city and the administrative center of Ryazan Oblast, Russia. It is located on the Oka River southeast of Moscow. Population: The strategic bomber base Dyagilevo is just west of the city, and the air base of Alexandrovo is to the southeast as is the Ryazan Turlatovo Airport...

 in 1700.

In 1700, on the death of Adrian
Patriarch Adrian
Patriarch Adrian was the last pre-revolutionary Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia.Adrian caught the eye of Patriarch Joachim, when he was still an archmandrite at Chudov Monastery. In 1686, Joachim appointed him metropolitan of Kazan and Sviyazhsk. On August 24, 1690, Adrian was chosen to replace...

, the last patriarch of Moscow
Moscow is the capital, the most populous city, and the most populous federal subject of Russia. The city is a major political, economic, cultural, scientific, religious, financial, educational, and transportation centre of Russia and the continent...

, Yavorsky was appointed custodian of the spiritualities of the patriarchal see. Notwithstanding frequent collisions with Peter, and his partiality for the unfortunate Tsarevich Alexius
Alexius is the Latinized form of the given name Alexios , especially common in the later Byzantine Empire. Variants include Alexis with the Russian Aleksey and its Ukrainian counterpart Oleksa/Oleksiy deriving from this form...

, Yavorsky was too valuable a man to be discarded. In 1721 he was made first president of the newly erected Holy Synod
Holy Synod
In several of the autocephalous Eastern Orthodox churches and Eastern Catholic Churches, the patriarch or head bishop is elected by a group of bishops called the Holy Synod...

, but died in the following year. After that Stephen's duties were conferred on Feofan Prokopovich
Feofan Prokopovich
thumb|Theophan ProkopovichFeofan/Theophan Prokopovich was an archbishop and statesman in the Russian Empire, of Ukrainian descent. He elaborated and implemented Peter the Great's reform of the Russian Orthodox Church...


Yavorsky was also a noted poet and composer.

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