Hellenic College – Holy Cross Hosts Overnight Visit for Applicants

The main administration building of Hellenic College and Holy Cross Greek-Orthodox School of Theology in one of the most prominent areas of Brookline Massachusetts. (Photo by TNH/Theodore Kalmoukos)

BOSTON – Hellenic College applicants and their parents arrived on campus the afternoon of Thursday, March 14, to a warm welcome. Rev. Fr. Gregory Floor, Director of Admissions and a Holy Cross alumnus, first introduced Rev. Fr. Christopher Metropulos, President of HCHC. Fr. Christopher told the visitors that at HCHC, as distinct from most campuses, “there is no holding back on faith. This is a place where people are always striving to better themselves in Christ.” The visitors then heard from another alumnus, Rev. Fr. Antonios Papathanasiou, who has returned to his alma mater as Dean of Students. The welcome concluded with remarks by Dr. Bob Murray and Betty Paganis of the Office of Spiritual Formation and Counseling Services, followed by Eileen Maguire, Academic Services Coordinator. All three emphasized the fact that students at HCHC are supported in all aspects of their lives here, not only academically.

After Vespers in Holy Cross Chapel, the applicants joined current students for dinner in the Condakes Cafeteria while their parents dined at an elegant inn nearby with Fr. Gregory, Dr. Kathleen Ryan of the Hellenic College faculty, and Dr. Bruce Beck, who teaches in both schools and is interim Dean of Hellenic College. After dinner, the applicants participated in a workshop conducted by the Office of Vocation & Ministry, a trivia competition, an ice cream social, and Great Compline service in the Chapel.

Friday morning after Orthros in the Chapel and breakfast applicants to Hellenic College met with Dr. Beck, then sat in on a sociology class. Holy Cross applicants met with School of Theology faculty before attending a class on Scripture in the Orthodox Church. Meanwhile, parents met with Fr. Gregory and learned about next steps for admissions and obtaining financial aid. After lunch, all of the visitors had the opportunity to tour the campus. Individual meetings with the Director Financial Aid, Michael Kirchmeier, were also available for applicants and parents, all of whom we hope to see again in September!


  1. What isn’t said in the article is the number of prospective students who showed up. I heard pretty low as in low single digits from faculty. Adding 3-7 students per year won’t save the undergraduate school. Way too much excess capacity there in terms of faculty and overhead and each student probably loses money given the massive tuition discounting.

    1. If your statement above about single digit visiting recruits is accurate, then at best, HCHC is an outdated, poorly staffed, and poorly operated Ottoman relic. At worst, it’s used to perpetuate Byzantine imperialism, the Hellenic ethos, and for mindless ,dishonest, fundraising.

      In either case, the data seems to point to the fact that it’s unsustainable; and that the parent entity that supports and governs it (the GOA) is even less sustainable.
      The hard decisions are not being made by any of the stakeholders, who continue to hide from the truth, but want the Faithful to keep emptying their pocketbooks.

      With every passing week, just as with the St Nicholas Shrine in NYC, the ability to devise and outcome lessen by a half-life until it’s impossible to control. I think we’ve reached that point and beyond.

      Thank you Patriarch and Synod, Archbishop and Metropolitans, Archdiocesan Council, Archons, Faith, Leadership 100, and GOA staff. All of you are culpable in this intersection of criminality, corruption, lies, grossly negligent mismanagement, and abandonment of fiduciary responsibility.

      Soon, all of you will hypocritically proclaim “CHRISTOS ANESTH” knowing you have simulanteously knifed the belly of the American Church with your right hand and pick-pocketed its wallet with your left.

      ALITHOS ANESTH, if you can live with what you’ve done.

    2. Angry communicant,

      Well said, though like many Greeks, an inherent part of the problem is conflating culture (Hellenism) with faith (Christian Orthodoxy).

      They are not the same thing. Out of the 250-300 million Orthodox Christians in the world, only about 10-11 million are Greek/Hellenic.

      Christ humiliates those who do not approach Him with humility — it is the only way to try to bring them to metanoia/repentance.

      The “American Church” (whatever that means… it means many different things to different Orthodox Christians in America) certainly does not need Hellenism as advanced by the GOA and HCHC to survive.

      The rest of the Orthodox Churches in America also constitute the “American Church,” yet these non-Greek parishes are largely invisible to narcissistic Greek-Americans.

      This is indeed a “divine humiliation” coming down on the GOA and upon HCHC. Tragic part is that most narcissitic Greek-Americans seem to find Christ’s divine humiliation on the Cross (which we will celebrate in two weeks’ time) to be shameful (as Muslims do); otherwise, why not honor it, approach it with humility, and thank God for the humility that He brings upon us for our own salvation?

  2. “Where the Patriarchate of Constantinople looks upon its Ottoman past as the story of a mother selflessly and sacrificially caring for her children, both the churches subject to this care and most modern western historians view Constantinople’s activity in this period as that of a corrupt and exploitative colonial interloper.

    Thanks to pressure from the western powers, the Ecumenical Patriarchate managed to survive when its Sunni Muslim coeval, the Ottoman caliphate was abolished in 1924. Existing as it does today, this last surviving Ottoman institution perpetuates a pseudomorphosis of ecclesiology that has prevented Orthodoxy from growing into an authentic expression of the Church’s life in the present, free from both nationalism and nostalgia for empire.”

    From an ocl.org posting

  3. As per John V. aforementioned – EXACTLY how many prospective students showed up at the HC/HC Campus??? This omission is highly inexcusable journalism on behalf of The National Herald.

    It seems that this “last minute” P.R. effort to promote the HC/HC schools especially at this point in time is seemingly futile wasted efforts on behalf of HC/HC and the GOA.

    All prospective applicants, their parents, and noted HC/HC administrators should ALL have shared the same meal and dining experience, “and broken bred” TOGETHER as one body at the Condakes Dining Hall.
    It would have been more appropriate to do so in consideration of the school’s dire economic situation.

    An “elegant inn” dining experience for HC administrators and parents, impresses no one but those who enjoyed a different menu and venue – Shame on You!
    This lack of reality is what is paramount in the culture of HC/HC that makes it all so wrong!

    A “trivia competition and an ice cream social” prior to Compline at the Chapel – seriously!?
    Where was Bozo the Clown to blow little balloon novelties!?
    Is this supposed to be an institution of higher learning or a privileged Pre-K School !?
    Laughable but very sad!

    I really, REALLY hope they are all able to return come September and the “Gates to the Hill” are not padlocked with a CLOSED sign posted.

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