The Special Report of the St. Nicholas Finances

St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church and National Shrine at the World Trade Center. (FILE Photo by TNH/Kostas Bej)

NEW YORK – The Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America published the PricewaterhouseCoopers Report about the St. Nicholas finances. According to the Report, PwC was able to confirm that expenditures from St. Nicholas funds were, in fact, used for St. Nicholas-related purposes, and, therefore, met donor restrictions.

The Report does indicate that the Archdiocese borrowed the sum of $3,504,550 from the St. Nicholas fund for general Archdiocesan expenditures. On May 2, the Archdiocese returned $1,000,000 to the fund, reducing the balance owed by the Archdiocese to the St. Nicholas fund, to $2,504,550 plus interest.

Follows the Pdf with the full text of the PwC report.

SNCNS Final Phase I Report 05.15.2018

 

Follows a brief summary of findings, based on BakerHostetler’s review of the Report.

BakerHostetler

25 Comments

  1. Seems to me this is an admission of fraud. The fact that a million was repaid is irrelevant. Who authorized improper transfers from a restricted fund? In the non-profit world people go to jail or are fined for similar actions. Once the money transferred, how many first class tickets to Greece and Cyprus were purchased? This is presented as some exoneration when it’s a sad piece of evidence of continued malfeasance.

  2. These reports from these high end CPA firms tell us that the Archdiocese took the money from the St Nicholas
    Account to use presumably for a more pressing need.

    Are the CPA’s in the scope of their audit PERMITTED to tell us where the money went??????????????????

    Are these CPA firms PRECLUDED from auditing the books of the Archdiocese?????????????????????????

    We parishioners DEMAND to know! Where did the money of the Archdiocese go???????????????????????

  3. Let’s see, this project is so important to so many people, 9/11, the loss of life, the importance of a successful completion etc. YET, according to these ‘reports’, after 16 years (2001 to 12/31/17) there’s only $496K left because $3.5 million was “properly borrowed” for expenses having NOTHING TO DO with St. Nicholas but were completely proper and legal. OK, first, the reports have no detail whatsoever, second, when and if money was needed for GOA expenses why wasn’t it borrowed from a less critical fund, like the $27 million in St. Michael’s Home instead? Since it’s SO PROPER AND LEGAL, why not save the Archdiocese and do it now instead of placing more debt on the GOA? And what will become of Jerry Dimitriou and George Papadakos? Will they be re-hired with proper apologies? Oh what a tangle web we weave…

  4. Greeks still refuse to believe Nixon resign and was almost impeached for lying.

    1. And Bubba Clinton was Impeached and DIDN’T resign. No shame. Same as our church leaders.That’s a better analogy than Nixon who was at least honorable in the end.

  5. Another confusing matter: if $3.5 million was “properly borrowed”, why did it take attorneys, investigations and PWC accountants to ‘encourage’ the start of repaying these ‘loans’? Shouldn’t this have started right alter the borrowing began; on a monthly basis? And where did the $1 million repayment come from? Embezzlement insurance or is it just PAUL trying to “pay back” Peter?

  6. Disturbing as all this is we have to find a way as a community to finish St. Nicholas or it will be a national embarrassment! The Archdiocese has proven incompetent to handle this task, their biggest mistake was the architect! Either way when finished it will be a positive for the Greek community and Christianity in the United States so maybe the funds should be repaid by those who “borrowed” them asap so the donations can resume .

    1. It “IS” a national disaster…….that needs to be addressed and rectified immediately

    2. Completing St Nicholas is the gateway to Perdition. Why? Because maintenance and operation of a first-class facility will cost millions each year, Millions that we don’t have and can’t raise because no one trusts the archdiocese. Read the comments above and below. So, a poorly run and poorly maintained facility will stick out like a sore thumb. Donating the building as a Welcome Center and walking away is a better idea,

    3. @Nikos
      “The Archdiocese has proven incompetent to handle this task, their biggest mistake was the architect!”
      So the architect is at fault because he was hired by an archdiocese that is inept? Do you really believe that?
      I agree with Michael Mentos, they should cut their loses and donate the building as a welcome center.

  7. What was the amount reported for the underwriting all the expenses of the Holy Council meetings in Crete? Seems to me, this is how the funds were spent.

    Millions of Non budgeted American dollars forced to be paid by the Archdiocese.

  8. #TimeToBeAChristCenteredChurchAgain

    Greek Orthodox Archdiocese and each Metropolis must keep in mind that the laity builds its churches.

    Our church needs new leadership!

    1. Maria,

      Baby Jesus and The Crucified and Risen Christ are nowhere to be seen in any archdiocesan endeavor. They have been slickly disguised Agents of The Prince of Darkness for decades. Don’t ask them to lead us to Salvation. They are leading us to damnation. We all see and feel it. Nothing seems right. It seems sick and diseased and sinful and prideful. Pray that a Great Archangel comes in the night and wields the fiery sword of righteousness among us. Any “restructure” is further deceit and evidence of The Evil One.

    2. Maria you are 100% correct…We the laity built our churches, maintain them and hopefully possess the spirit to expand them with ministries.
      #TimeToBeAChristCenteredChurchAgain

  9. To me that report is completely whitewashed
    It seems the structural engineer has worked for free as he does not appear on the list
    The AoR and RKK & G Museum & Cultural are essentially the same entity, who have together earned more money than the Architect himself.
    What a greek tragedy…

  10. What happened to the US Attorney and Attorney General’s investigation on the unexplained $12.75 million deficit? This missing $3.5 million from this St. Nicholas project is a simple ‘misdirection tactic’. So far, you have only been allowed access to GOA ”spin”. Now begins the delay, while “loans” are “repaid”, project restarts and everyone will FORGET the $12.75 million and AG investigation. Besides, politically, the AG wants this to go away as well. Maybe the GOA will award some of the ‘guilty’ and coincidentally they’ll soon retire. The GOA specialty – cover-up!

  11. PwC is a great company but they do what their client tells them to do. In this case they were clearly hired to write an “everything is okay, nothing to see here” memo.

    It is bad enough that nearly $5,000,000 was raised from the St. Nicholas funds in violation of legal donor restrictions without any documentation or promises to repay until the hands were caught in the cookie jar.

    But the report ignores how this was allowed to happen and how the millions in misappropriated funds were spent? Where did the money go? Where are the apologies? Where are the prosecutions? It is time for real reform and to cut off the money to the GOA until this happens!

    1. You will recall that Arthur Anderson, one of the legendary Big 6 accounting firms, went out of business after its clean reports on Enron.

  12. Why in the world was a lawyer by the name of Simos Dimas involved with the Saint Nicholas project? This man sued the Archdiocese in the 1990’s creating a scandal over a real estate project that brought Jerry Dimitriou to power. How ironic that his services were deemed necessary considering all of the other attorney’s mentioned. Fr. Alex should tell us why…

    1. Good point. Maybe they can also explain why Mr. Dimos personally received $12,082 and his company, Dimas Law Group, separately received $10,000. I hope this wasn’t for “tax purposes”. It would also be very ‘revealing’ to see WHOSE SIGNATURE(S) are on certain checks. I am sure the Archdiocese will be able to ‘explain’ the process of how these expenditures were AUTHORIZED and by WHO! Another MISSING CRITICAL FACT from the ‘reports’.

      1. Perhaps the IRS should join the list of agencies investigating the Archdiocese. I wonder how many of our bishops report and pay taxes on their “tips”?

  13. Why are the fundraising expenses absorbed by the archdiocese. If these are legitimate expenses, they belong in the audit. Were they rerouted to temporarily hide them due to the clergyman in charge of fundraising and then be reassigned back to St. Nicholas once these selected investigations have concluded. Was this done to avoid grand jury scrutiny? What other information contained in this report is the result of a cfo and or treasurer of the archdiocese who have proven how they have masterminded the act of creative accounting?

  14. Muchachos, gracias.
    You are on to something. Of high interest is The Fundraiser and his Platinum Card.
    Just make sure you get all the cards of all the players.Who knows if some may be under other names, entities or tied to VISA accounts offshore (like Cyprus banks)?

    Not accusing anyone, just saying…..
    This whole deal has been too slick for too long.
    There is no reason to trust any of them.

    Hombres, no me comprendes !
    We were promised forensics and what got was bs and “all fixed”.

  15. How many of those involved in church affairs actually attend liturgy? the FULL liturgy? Catholics shorten liturgy, one hour during the year, even half an hour at the beach, but Greeks do it themselves by showing up late. The dudes who show up in all those church committees don’t really go to church, only the philoctopus prances and pagan coffee hours. And all the romper gossip efrem burka yiayessas only listen to sermons on MP3 they exchange on their prosforo delivery romps.

  16. It seems the “hierarchy” of our Archdiocese and our churches would be better off concentrating their efforts on restoring the trust and faith of its people than restoring buildings…

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