Holy Trinity Chicago Saved by Christmas Miracle Donation (Pics)

Rev. Nicholas Jonas hugs a longtime parishioner of Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church, which avoided being sold at auction, Friday, Dec. 14, 2018, in Chicago. The 120-year-old Chicago church was saved from auction after a midnight call from a group of donors, which one church official said was "a Christmas miracle." (E. Jason Wambsgans/Chicago Tribune via AP)

CHICAGO – Just hours from the property being turned over to the bank, Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church received a miracle in answer to parishioners’ prayers, a donation of $2 million which will keep the church in operation, ABC7 Chicago reported. 

Holy Trinity’s Fr. Nicholas Jonas told ABC7, “A lot of people thought that this was it and it was hard to see.”

Parish Council President Stanley Andreakis said that “the donation will allow the church to re-file for bankruptcy and prevent the building from being torn down by an investment bank firm,” ABC7 reported, adding that  “We feel like kids. You wake up at Christmas and you have a present. You are like, I get to keep my church. Last night, we were all here praying, we were praying for a Christmas miracle, and it came through. We had some individuals approach us and they were able to come up with a proposal that our lawyer put together and our lawyer, at the last minute, at the 11th hour, put together a bankruptcy plan so we can restructure because of these guardian angels. Call it a Christmas miracle.”

A non-profit group made the donation but has not been identified at press time, ABC7 reported, noting that Holy Trinity leaders observed that “at least donor is a member of the congregation.”

This Friday, Dec. 14, 2018 photo, shows the interior of Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church in Chicago. The 120-year-old Chicago church was saved from auction after a midnight call from a group of donors, which one church official said was “a Christmas miracle.” (E. Jason Wambsgans/Chicago Tribune via AP)

Fr. Jonas told ABC7, “We all believe in the miracles of Christmas, and for them to have done this… that is what it feels like for me. I want them to know that their setting up bank accounts and rewards is not what really matters, but what they did sets up a reward for themselves in heaven.”

Services are scheduled for Sunday, Andreakis told ABC7, adding that “with 121 years of service to the community, ministering to the community, this church, which is a house of God, will remain here. It will not be auctioned off to a developer. They would probably knock it down for financial gain and build some kind of development.”

The donation came just hours before Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church in the Belmont Central neighborhood was set to go to auction.

11 Comments

  1. That’s generous for sure, probably emotionally driven, and probably the wrong business decision for future long term stability.

  2. LMC as usual you are spot on. God bless whoever stepped up to the plate for this Church. Unfortunately the official response will probably be, “see, we had this under control all along.” Net Demetrios is doing a lot of begging these days to solve his ineptness on the St. Nicholas project.

  3. I am happy that the Chruch is going to stay open, but being able to re-file for bankruptcy is not a Christmass miracle. All the 2 mill did is buy some time nothing more. As for Saint Nicholas, Demetrios and the one in charge of this NATIONAL SCANDAL “Faher” Alex Karloutsos are going to have bigger troubles to deal with in 2019. Port Authority will be taking over and the “Mob of Clowns” will be exposed.

  4. Lower Manhattan Cynic – It will be interesting to see how “Christianly” motivated these donations and this non-profit group really is. Perhaps just a orchestrated publicity stunt by the new Metropolitan and his advisers to save face after coming under fire and being exposed by what appears to be some church insiders: https://protectingorthodoxchurch.blogspot.com/

    My understanding is that there is still a lawsuit working its way through the courts that was filed by this church, in this Metropolis, targeting a former parish council President’s insurance policy in what seems like an extortion attempt to bail out all of the key players involved in this $8 million mess: the Metropolitan, his advisers, the former church priest who allegedly led the demise, the current parish council (including their current parish council President who apparently was also involved in the initial loan decision related to this) and now possibly even these “donors” who are not yet openly revealing themselves at this time, probably given their motives and agendas linked to the Metropolitan himself and/or the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America?

    All smells fishy doesn’t it? But then again, the fish does rot from the head…

  5. That may mean $2million less to complete the albatross at Ground Zero.
    At least this is a real church.

  6. It makes no sense for this group to put up $2 million dollars to save the building that is currently Holy Trinity Church as they owe over $12 million dollars; this is a parish with less than 150 families.

    A wiser course of action would have been for this group and Holy Trinity to have partnered up and go and buy an existing church, appropriate in size for a congregation of 150 families, in a location that made more sense as far as proximity to current and potential parishioners (Holy Trinity is currently located in an area that does not fit this description).

    This would have cost far less than the $2 million dollars that they have poured in here and the parish would have had a paid in full church and probably money left over so that they would’ve been more adequately capitalized.

    Keep in mind while Holy Trinity as a parish has been around for 121 years, the location they are currently located in is a church that was built in the 1960’s.

    In other words it’s not their original church nor is it an architecturally significant church; picture that generally drab and cookie cutter construction of the many churches built in the high flying expansion era of Greek Orthodox Churches from the 1960’s thru the 1980’s; in other words they aren’t trying to save Notre Dame or Hagia Sofia here.

    It will be interesting to see what the plan is to service the $12 million dollar mortgage (all the bankruptcy courts in the world ain’t making that obligation go away).

  7. The church spends millions feeding migrants and islamisizing Greece .
    Traitors don’t deserve a cent

  8. The church spends millions feeding migrants and islamisizing Greece .
    This church has betrayed the Greek ethos too many times .
    Let it die as the Orthodox Church doesn’t represent Greeks anymore

  9. The ARCHO and their Millionaire Collaborators only care about PARTIES and AWORDS they give THEMSELVES not PEOPLE.

    The posting on the Young Adults Facebook page from December 13, 2018.
    IMPORTANT QUESTION: Why did we even save Holy Trinity?

    The Chicago “Metropolis” Open House will not be located at the “Metropolis” this year. Instead, the annual tradition started by Metropolitan Iakovos, to invite people into his home, will be held at Saint Demetrios Church in Chicago. The name of the event is slightly misleading because it really should be called the “Saint Demetrios Open House with our special guest Metropolitan Nathanael of Chicago.”

    While we give thanks to God that Holy Trinity in Chicago is not closing, it is easy to question why the Metropolis would care to keep the Church open? The Metropolis scheduled the “Metropolis Open House” to conflict with the Vespers of Saint Dionysios, whose chapel is located in the basement of the Holy Trinity Church that was recently just saved from foreclosure. We just saved a Church from closing and now there will be very low attendance at the Vespers Service because everyone is expected to be partying with the Metropolitan!

    In an interesting twist of events, the Philoptochos ladies are not serving this event. The Young Adults of the Metropolis are being asked to sign-up to volunteer for the event. The YAL Board was able to sell over 100 tickets for their annual YAL Christmas party, but as of this morning has only been able to confirm two people who signed up to volunteer with the “Metropolis” Open House. It is easy to wonder why the 100 people who bought tickets to the YAL Christmas party would not be so eager to volunteer for the Open House? We would recommend to our young adults to, instead, go pray at the Saint Dionysios Chapel. It will be much more spiritually edifying.

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