Archbishop Elpidophoros Remarks at the Groundbreaking for the Youth and Ministry Center

His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros

Remarks at the Groundbreaking for the Youth and Ministry Center

March 3, 2024

Saint Katherine Greek Orthodox Church

Naples, Florida


Beloved Brother, Metropolitan Alexios of Atlanta,

Your Grace, Bishop Sevastianos of Zela,

Very Reverend and Reverend Fathers,

President Pizzi and Members of the Parish Council,

Beloved Sisters of the Philoptochos,

Esteemed Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate,

Honored Members of Leadership 100,

Dear Parishioners of Saint Katherine,


What a marvelous day to break ground for this vital addition to your Parish. You are creating an institutional legacy of faith, of learning, and of love.

These structures that will house your youth and education programs, offices and meeting halls, are more than mere bricks and mortar. They are a sign of this community’s deeply held beliefs, and a sign of hope for a better future. Like every farmer who breaks open the earth to plant the seeds that will grow and nourish the world, you are planting seeds today that will yield a harvest, as the Lord said, even to a hundredfold.*

As your Archbishop, I know that you will water and nurture the seeds you are planting with this Groundbreaking. For the seeds I see, are the faces of the beloved people of this Parish – young and old alike.

Our Church buildings and facilities are our homes, where we gather as one family in Christ. Where we grow as the Body of Christ. Where we assemble as the Ἐκκλησία of God. And where we welcome others into our presence – with love, compassion, acceptance, and understanding.

Therefore, my beloved friends:

Let us cultivate this wonderful field here in Naples, dedicated to the All-wise and Great-martyr Katherine. Let us grow a harvest of community service and ministry that is based in love and mercy. And let us always welcome the strangers into our midst, and make them our friends.

Congratulations to all!

* Cf. Luke 10:8.


Photos: GOARCH/Dimitrios Panagos

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