WHITESTONE – Following the Divine Liturgy at Holy Cross Greek Orthodox Church in Whitestone on November 5, Fr. George Anastasiou announced that next Sunday, November 12, will be his last as presiding priest of the community.
He was visibly moved as he thanked the community’s current and past leadership, the Parish Council, the Philoptochos Society, and all the members of the church family and friends, the youth organizations, GOYA, JOY, Girl Scouts, and the basketball teams as well as all those present. Fr. Anastasiou had served the community for a little more than three years and wished all the best to the community and its new presiding priest Fr. Nicholas Paros who currently serves at St. Demetrios Cathedral in Astoria alongside Dean of the Cathedral Fr. Anargyros Stavropoulos.
He encouraged the community to embrace their new priest and invite him into their homes, to get to know him and his presvytera, as coming to a new community can be a daunting and even lonely experience for a young priest in his first time as the presiding clergyman of a community.
Of where he will be going next, Fr. Anastasiou said he will be taking a sabbatical and has not yet been assigned to a new post or community, but he will keep in touch as much as possible in the future and continue to pray for the community as he prays for his previous communities, St. Demetrios in Astoria and Transfiguration in Corona.
Fr. Anastasiou also wished another great season to the youth basketball teams, recalling their recent run of championships. He also urged everyone to continue to support the community’s Star Academy Day School, pointing out that everyone is enthusiastic to donate to open a new school, but continuing to operate the school over time is much more difficult and requires ongoing support.
As Fr. Anastasiou gave out the antidoro to the parishioners on their way out of the church, many expressed their best wishes and told him that they would miss him to which Fr. Anastasiou replied that he would miss them, too.