Greek Orthodox Church Vandalized in Manhattan

(Photo: St. Spyridon's website, saintspyridon.net)

NEW YORK – Police are investigating vandalism at a Washington Heights church as a hate crime, according to pix11.com.

On Sept. 23, police received reports about profanity and lewd images written on four church doors at the St. Spyridon Greek Orthodox Church at Wadsworth Avenue in Manhattan.

The individual is described to be a male, about 5-feet-8-inches, and 30 years old with a full beard and black hair. He was last seen wearing a black baseball cap, blue jeans, a white sweatshirt and black sneakers,  pix11 says. 

THE HISTORY OF THE CHURCH

While officially incorporated by the State of New York on June 25, 1931 under the name “Washington Heights Hellenic Orthodox Church, Inc.,” Greek Orthodox faithful residing in upper Manhattan had attempted some years earlier to organize a parish. Services were held in various locations by the Rev. Kanellos Kanellopoulos and the Church was known as Pantanassa – the Virgin Mary. It was not until the assignment of the Very Reverend Archimandrite Vaselios Lokis in 1931 that the church was organized and named Saint Spyridon Church. The certificate of incorporation was signed by Nicholas Botsakis, Otto D. Prounis, Marcos Yampanis, George Papaeleas, Evangelos A. Negris and Socrates Angelson. The faithful congregated at first in a small hall above a theater located on St. Nicholas Avenue at 185th Street. Later, they met in a room above a garage on 183rd Street east of Broadway. Holy Rood Episcopalian Church on 179th Street and Ft. Washington Avenue made available an auditorium for use by our parish.

(Read the History Of Our Community: 1931 To The Present at St. Spyridon’s website)

THE RESTORATION

In April 2016 the Parish Council undertook the much needed and ambitious task of the complete restoration of the interior of our exquisite Byzantine church. Every effort was made to restore the historic Temple of the church, especially its iconography, in a manner consistent with the workmanship and style of the original artwork. Tremendous efforts were made to ensure the use of techniques and methodology that result in authentic colors and tones, with as little impact as possible on the original, to bring it back to its former glory. The iconographer commissioned for the restoration project was Mr. Miltiadis Afentoulis.

(Read the story of the church’s restoration at St. Spyridon’s website)

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