REDONDO BEACH, CA – The St. Katherine Greek Orthodox Church of Redondo Beach, CA recently celebrated a hierarchal liturgy and luncheon in the celebration of their recently completed Narthex and Administration Center on Sunday, September 9.
It was a joyous day for the parish beginning with the honoring of two couples who were awarded the Archdiocesan Medal of St. Paul by His Eminence Metropolitan Gerasimos of the San Francisco Diocese. Dr. Gus and Helen Dalis and George and Georgene Mitsanas were the recipients of the medal in recognition of outstanding services and commitment to our Church of America. It is the highest laity medal awarded by the Archdiocese of America.
After the Divine Liturgy Fr. Michael Courey introduced the two couples stating:
“Dr. Gus T. and Mrs. Helen Dalis (nee Kouios) are the parents of three adult sons who were raised in the church. Gus and Helen attend together regularly and faithfully. In the case of Dr. and Mrs Dalis, we see a couple that have both suffered serious and debilitating health problems that could have easily kept them not only from attending church services but also could have been used as a reason to keep them from their active involvement in serving in a variety of ways in high level leadership roles in our church. Instead, they have set an example for our community from the youth to the seniors, of the true Christian spirit of sacrificial giving of themselves in the spirit of serving God in Worship and Truth. It is for this reason that this incredible couple receive the Medal of St. Paul, who himself suffered physically but did not allow it to deter him from fighting the good fight and completing the race in service to our Lord, God, and Savior Jesus Christ.”
“Mr. George H. and Mrs. Georgene Mitsanas (nee Halikis) are the parents of three teenage children who have been raised in the church. This dynamic couple has opened their lovely home in the Greek spirit of philoxenia on many occasions ranging from youth ministry, committee and Parish Council social gatherings and of course, to host His Eminence! George and Georgene have given consistently and generously to our church of St. Katherine, the youth ministries, and religious services, the Parish Council, the Capital Campaign and Planning Committees. Their commitment of giving extends to the Metropolis, Archdiocese, and Ecumenical Patriarchate and to numerous other charitable organizations, such as the National Charity League. Mr. and Mrs. George Mitsanas are role models for other couples their age in our community, having set the bar high in terms of active involvement in the church while raising teenagers and living very demanding home and professional lives. They have given tirelessly to our church and continue to do so with a spirit of joyfulness and cheerfulness. St. Paul wrote that our Lord Jesus said “God loves a cheerful giver.” It is with this in mind that I highly recommend with enthusiasm for Mr. and Mrs. Mitsanas to receive the Medal of St. Paul.
The award presentation was followed by the blessing of the new Narthex and the Dr. Michael N. and Rosalind F. Halikis Administration Center. A luncheon followed in the Foundation Community Center —“To Crown Our Jewel by the Sea” and to declare the Capital Campaign Vision: “With respect for our fathers and mothers who with faith laid the foundation upon this holy hill, we build upon their legacy, to meet the facility needs of our future generations, to the Glory of God through the interceptions of Saint Katherine.”
The program included a welcome by the Parish Council President, Bill Marutsos with the invocation by His Eminence Metropolitan Gerasimos assisted by Rev. Fr. Michael K. Courey. Remarks were made by George Mitsanas, Chairman of the Capital Campaign and Building Committees followed by Rev. Fr. Michael K. Courey introducing Mrs. Rosalind Farmans Halikis who spoke of her love for the parish sighting some of its past history. Halikis also spoke of her late husband, Dr. Michael N. Halikis and the love he had for his faith, family and profession of Obstetrics & Gynecology—still finding the time to serve his church for many years, also serving as Parish Council president and treasurer.
Those attending the luncheon also enjoyed the bouzouki playing of the talented Lambros Houvardas, photography of Alexandra Zarkas, the sound perfected by Peter Loukatos and the assistance of Andrea Ballas.