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Church

Fr. Avgoustinos Psomas Welcomed as New Priest at St. Thomas in Cherry Hill

CHERRY HILL, NJ – His Grace Bishop Apostolos of Medeia celebrated the Divine Liturgy on January 9 and presented the Very Reverend Archimandrite Fr Avgoustinos Psomas to the congregation as the new priest at St Thomas Greek Orthodox Church in Cherry Hill. Axios!

Also on January 9, the continuing and newly elected members of the Parish Council participated in the Affirmation of Office presided over by His Grace Bishop Apostolos. The Parish Council formed for 2022 is the following: Stavros Antonakakis, Cosmas Diamantis, Christopher Diamantoukos, Anastasios Efstratiades, Nicholas Gasparinatos, Constantine E. Horiates, George G. Horiates, Elias Iliadis, Gerasimos G. Kappatos, Efstathios Karadonis, Alex Kokolis, Nick G. Kostiou, Gerasimos Melissaratos, George N   Pappas, Dimitrios Rozanitis, and Charles Sandilos.

The Very Reverend Archimandrite Fr. Avgoustinos Psomas at St. Thomas Greek Orthodox Church in Cherry Hill, NJ. Photo: Steve Lambrou

The Affirmation of Office ceremony took place at the Church after the Divine Liturgy. We wish all Parish Council members a fruitful and most productive year.

The St. Irene Philoptochos at St. Thomas Church sponsored the annual cutting of the St. Basil’s bread, on January 9, as well, following the Divine Liturgy. It is also customary that a special contribution is offered on this day and willbe sent to the St. Basil Academy in Garrison, New York, our Archdiocesan Child Care Center.

The Honorable Susan Shin Angulo, Mayor of Cherry Hill, NJ, thanked the St. Thomas parish for their dedication to the city and welcomed Fr. Psomas to the community.

The Parish Council at St. Thomas Greek Orthodox Church in Cherry Hill, NJ, with His Grace Bishop Apostolos of Medeia, Fr. Avgoustinos Psomas, and Fr. Christoforos Oikonomidis. Photo: Steve Lambrou

A banquet at the Danielle Kousoulis Center followed, where Fr. Psomas received gifts from the Parish Council, the Philoptochos, Sunday School, and GOYA. The GOYA gave Fr. Avgoustinos a sweatshirt featuring their colors and logo. Fr. Psomas then cut a cake made in his honor and thanked the attendees.

Fr. Avgoustinos Psomas was born and raised in Corfu and settled in the village of the Saints Theodore in Lefkimmi, Corfu. While completing his undergraduate studies, he studied electrical engineering at the Electrical Engineering Department of the Sivitanidios Technical School in Athens. He also attended Byzantine music classes at Saint Marina in Illisia under Dr. Athanasios Vourlis.

Cherry Hill Mayor Susan Shin Angulo welcomed Fr. Avgoustinos Psomas to the community. Photo: Steve Lambrou

After completing his military service in 2000, he passed the qualifying exams for admission to the School of Theology at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki in 2003 from which he graduated in 2007. In 2008, he graduated from the Conservatory of Northern Greece, where he completed his Master’s Degree in Byzantine Music with courses in Speech Training, Choir Directing, Liturgical Studies, and Reciting Readings.

During his theological studies, he studied for three consecutive years in the Byzantine School of Music under the guidance of the famous Panagiotis Neohoritis and served the Holy Analogion of the Church of St. George of Ormylia, where he had the privilege serving as the head chanter from 2004-2012, until his arrival in the United States. From 2013 to 2019 he served at the Hellenic Community of Saint Demetrios of Astoria as head chanter until his ordination to the Holy Diaconate on Christmas Eve 2019. He was then ordained to the Holy Priesthood on September 29, 2020, and elevated to the rank of “Archimandrite” on June 21, 2021, both by the hands of His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros of America.

Philoptochos President Carol Pappas presented a gift to Fr. Avgoustinos Psomas at St. Thomas Greek Orthodox Church in Cherry Hill, NJ. Photo: Steve Lambrou

Since his ordination to holy diaconate, he served the Greek Orthodox Community of Holy Trinity in New Rochelle, NY. He recently graduated from the ThM program of the Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology in Boston.

After the appointment of Fr. Christoforos Oikonomidis as a full time Chancellor of the Holy Metropolis of New Jersey, Fr. Avgoustinos received the Archbishop’s blessing on his new assignment to the Greek Orthodox Church of St. Thomas in Cherry Hill, New Jersey, effective January 1, 2022.

The Sunday School students at St. Thomas Greek Orthodox Church in Cherry Hill, NJ, presented a gift to Fr. Avgoustinos Psomas. Photo: Steve Lambrou

 

GOYA President Yianna Ljachin and Vice President Mihalis Pantelous presented a sweatshirt as a gift to Fr. Avgoustinos Psomas at St. Thomas Church in Cherry Hill, NJ. Photo: Steve Lambrou

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