ΒΟSΤΟΝ – The historic 121 year-old Greek Orthodox parish of Chicago has somnambulated into bankruptcy. As a result, the MB Financial Bank will take its nave, the school building and the rest of the premises on December 14, 2018 at 10:30 in the morning.
The sad story was broken on November 28, 2018 on Facebook by presiding priest Nicholas Jonas who was appointed to the parish a year and one half ago. Priest emeritus Fr. George Kaloudis has been serving at the parish for 57 years.
The National Herald immediately attempted to communicate with Metropolitan Nathanael of Chicago but he was out of the United States because he is a member of the Holy Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate and had to travel to Constantinople.
The Metropolis was closed when we called at 5:45 Boston time and the voice mail of Chancellor Archimandrite Chrysostomos Panos was full and we could not leave any message. Nathanael responded to our e-mail from Constantinople saying that he was abroad, and the following day, November 29, the Metropolis of Chicago issued an official News Release.
The news releases of both Fr. Nicholas Jonas and Metropolitan Nathanael follow.
Fr. Jonas News Release: “As a result of burdensome economic and legal pressures, Chicago’s historic 121-year-old Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church has received a judgment of foreclosure. The Church released a statement noting that on December 14, at 10:30 AM, the title of the property on Diversey Avenue must be delivered to MB Financial Bank. The statement continues: “Our Church, together with the building that until a few years ago was the Socrates School, will unjustly go into the hands of the bank. Therefore, the evening before, Thursday, December 13, at 7 PM, a Paraclesis (Supplication) Service will be offered for our beloved home, our Holy Trinity at 6041 W. Diversey Ave. in Chicago, IL. We plead that all of our members, past and present…All of our friends… All of those who were baptized and married here… Those of you who prayed and attended Divine Services here, especially the Services of Holy Week and Pascha… Those of you who studied at Socrates School and who took part in our various youth and athletic groups…. All of you… Please come and offer up prayers to our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ through His All-Holy Mother… Pray that the waves that have turned against us be ceased!”
Metropolitan Nathanael’s News Release:
“On November 29, 2018, the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Chicago made thefollowing statement:“The Metropolis is aware that Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church of Chicago will be auctioned on December 14 and finds the situation regrettable anddisappointing.
“Since his enthronement in March, His Eminence Metropolitan Nathanael hastreated Holy Trinity's foreclosure as a top priority. Though it has limited power incivil matters like this one, the Metropolis has and continues to devotesubstantial time and resources in a good faith effort to find the best path forwardfor Holy Trinity.
“Regardless of the outcome of the auction on December 14, the Metropolis willcontinue to work with the parish, and if necessary, find a spiritual home forparishioners so worship, stewardship and the ministries of the Church continue inearnest. We ask the faithful of the Metropolis for their prayers and to remainmindful of the words of the Apostle Paul: “when one member suffers, all suffertogether” (1 Cor. 12:26).”