2012 D.A.D. Clergy-Laity Assembly
BRONX, N.Y. – Delegates to the Direct Archdiocese District Clergy-Laity Assembly on March 11 at the Church of Zoodochos Peghe passed a general resolution “urging and encouraging all members of the Church to assist the Greek Relief Fund” in response to the economic crisis in Greece.
His Eminence noted that, according to recent information he received, that the Archdiocese of Athens has been feeding 12,000 people on a daily basis for months.
“I am amazed that they can cope with that,” the Archbishop said. He added that the churches throughout Greece feed about 250,000 persons daily.
He earlier announced that an anonymous pledge of $500,000 had been made for the fund.
In his opening remarks to the Assembly, the Archbishop noted that the District has for the first time attained 100 percent of its stewardship allocation. “This is the place we should be as the Direct Archdiocese District,” he stated.
The Archbishop also noted that the church complex of the Resurrection parish in Port Washington church is nearing completion and Kimisis tis Theotokou parish in Southampton is endeavoring to build a new church.
In welcoming the delegates to his parish, the Very Rev. Sylvester Berberis noted that the community’s famed parochial school, the Greek American Institute, was observing its 100th anniversary and that youth of the school have raised more than $1,000 for assistance to Greece.
Keynote on Leadership
Recently ordained Bishop Sevastianos of Zela, the first Cypriot-born hierarch in the Archdiocese who serves as secretary to the Holy Eparchial Synod, gave a presentation on leadership and discussed characteristics and attitudes a good leader must have to serve the Church.
Among these are leading by example, inspiring others, mentoring, taking a positive approach, being truthful, listening, and having principles, knowledge and credibility.
Bishop Sevastianos noted that the leadership role of a hierarch is to “help us discover God’s kingdom by defining the local expression of this vision” highlighted by a shared vision and consensus building.
He said that leadership involves synergy, “working together with God so salvation will become real in our lives,” adding that “Leadership without love is self-serving and non-Christian,” His Grace said, citing a teaching in the First Epistle of John.
In his report, Bishop Andonios noted the continuing success of the District’s St. Paul Summer Camp, with 500 children expected to attend. The camp has grown progressively from a one-week session when it started in 2004 to its current four one-week sessions. The bishop noted that three of the four sessions were already closed and that the fourth would soon also have its maximum number of registrants.
The camping program has been so successful that Fr. Elias Villas, the director, later made a motion to discontinue the annual line item $500 donation that parishes had agreed to several years before until the facility could sustain itself.
Bishop Andonios announced the District’s newly launched website – http://ny.goarch.org/
Nicholas Sialmas of Poughkeepsie, N.Y., gave the finance report and discussed the allocation program, budget stewardship and the parish management software initiative.
Council members elected
Delegates elected clergy and lay representatives to the Direct Archdiocese District Council and to the Archdiocesan Council:
District Council representatives for the 2012-14 term are Fr. George Anastasiou, Transfiguration of Christ Church, Corona, N.Y; the Very Rev. Sylvester Berberis, Church of the Zoodohos Peghe, Bronx, NY; Constantinides, Fr. Evagoras Constantinides, District Youth Director, ew York; Fr. Evangelos Evangelides, Annunciation Church, Stamford, Conn.; Fr. John Lardas, Sts. Constantine & Helen Cathedral, Brooklyn, N.Y; Fr. Nicholas Petropoulokos, Holy Trinity-St. Nicholas Church, Staten Island, N.Y; Fr. John Vlahos, Church of the Holy Resurrection, Brookville, N.Y; Fr. George Zugravu, St. George Cathedral, Hartford, Conn; Brigis, Anthony Brigis, Church of the Holy Resurrection, Brookville, N.Y; Stella Capiris, Holy Trinity Church, Bridgeport, Conn; Stephen Cherpelis, Holy Trinity Cathedral, New York; Dr. Constantine Flokas, Prophet Elias Church, Yonkers, N.Y; James Gabriel, Church of the Holy Resurrection, Brookville; Ted Germanakos, Zoodohos Peghe, Bronx; Harry Raptakis, St. Paul Cathedral, Hempstead; Nicholas Sialmas, Kimisis Tis Theotokou Church, Poughkeepsie, N.Y.
Those elected to the Archdiocesan Council were: Fr. Nicholas Anctil, Holy Trinity Church, New Rochelle; Stephen Cherpelis, Holy Trinity Cathedral, New York; and Harry Raptakis, St. Paul Cathedral, Hempstead.
The following were appointed as trustees of St. Michael’s Home in Yonkers: Symeonides, V. Rev. Nathanael Symeonides, Annunciation Church, New York, and Constantine Rogdakis, Archangel Michael Church, Port Washington, N.Y.
Arcticle and Photo by Jim Golding, Orthodox Observer.