$100,000 Donation for Theological Academy of Toronto

The headquarters of the Metropolis of Toronto and Canada in Toronto where the Orthodox Theological Academy is housed and where Metropolitan Sotirios’ residence is located. (PHOTO: Courtesy of Metropolis of Toronto)

BOSTON -The late Greek-Canadian Kleoniki Georgouli bequeathed in her will the sum of $100,000 for the Theological Academy of the Metropolis of Toronto and All Canada.

The Theological Academy was established in 1998 by Metropolitan Sotirios, initially with seven students. Its purpose is to educate and prepare Greek-Canadian students to enter the holy priesthood and serve parishes in Canada. Two years ago the Ecumenical Patriarchate named the Academy, “Patriarchal Toronto Orthodox Theological Academy.”

The Academy functions at the academic level of a university. Connected with St. Paul University of Ottawa, it is recognized by all universities in Canada. During its twenty years of existence it has graduated 47 students, 28 of whom became ordained as priests. The annual tuition is $6,500 Canadian dollars, which includes room and board.

According to the Metropolis of Toronto, Kleoniki Georgouli was born in Triglia of Asia Minor in 1921 and immigrated to Canada with her parents and her two siblings. She married Sarantos Georgoulis, an immigrant to Canada from Kastri in Kynouria, Greece. They had three daughters who now live with their families in Edmonton and Calgary, Alberta.

Kleoniki Georgouli was an exemplary Greek woman and Orthodox Christian. Metropolitan Sotirios knew her since 1962 when he was a priest in Edmonton. At that time, she also served the Missionary Community in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. Kleoniki pioneered the founding of the Church in Saskatoon, and always worked with the Orthodox Church in Canada.

Georgouli supported both the Orthodox Church and Hellenism in the same dynamic manner. She was a member of the Daughters of Penelope and was elected to its highest offices.

Sotirios stated that “her parents, especially her mother Anastasia, were saintly people and her husband Sarantos, was truly an Greek Orthodox Christian in every way. Her daughters, Anastasia, Christina and Basilia, along with their families follow closely in their footsteps…We are very grateful for this significant gift. We ask the Thrice-Holy God to give rest to her soul and the souls of all her relatives among the saints, and we wish her daughters and their families to continue in the family tradition.”

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