MONTREAL – After a fire left Koimisis Tis Theotokou (Dormition of the Virgin Mary) on Saint-Roch St. in Park Extension in Montreal severely damaged in April 2015, the Greek community vowed to rebuild the beloved church. John Theodosopoulos, president of Construction Ecodomus, noted that after four years, everything is “in working order” at the church, CTV Montreal reported, adding that “the job, it took over a year from when we put the shovel to the ground. Only a labor of love would have seen us through that year because it was a challenging job.”
The problems are not over for the community since some of the subcontractors have allegedly not been paid for their work on the church and are suing, CTV reported.
“The Hellenic Community of Greater Montreal owns the building and received $3.2 million from its insurance company to rebuild,” CTV reported, adding that “costs exceeded that amount, and they owe around $650,000, said the group’s secretary of real estate and procurement Achilles Nikopoulos.”
“The moment it got handed over to us the clock starts ticking for us to be paid. With the general contractor who built this church, we’re cooperating. We haven’t refused payment, we’re just working on the details and getting all the funds to pay what’s due,” he said, CTV reported.
According to the CTV report, “two of the subcontractors took further legal action, activating 60 days’ notice at the beginning of February, meaning the church has just weeks to come up with the money.”
“One of the recourses they have is to force the sale of the church out in the public, collect money, and get paid off and then the balance of the money goes back to the client,” said Nikopoulos, CTV reported.
The subcontractors refused to comment on the situation, but “Theodosopoulos said he feels caught in the middle – he’s owed money too, but he understands that as a non-profit organization, the community doesn’t have quick access to cash,” CTV reported.
“Right now stress is what I’m living constantly,” he told CTV.
The Greek community who attends church at Koimisis Tis Theotokou is also under stress and is planning fundraising events in the next few weeks.
“Nikopoulos said he has every bit of faith the community will come through,” CTV reported.
“It’s a lot of money but we’re a large community. This church belongs to the community itself and it’s a project that was always looking forward to being rebuilt,” he told CTV.