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St. Photios Foundation Executive Board Meets

St. Augustine, FL - The spring meeting of the St. Photios Foundation Executive Board took place on June 28, 2003 at the Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church in St. Augustine, Florida. The meeting was held in conjunction with the Greek Landing Day Celebration 2003.

The Executive Director, V. Rev. Fr. Nicholas Graff welcomed the Trustees on behalf of the Foundation Chairman, His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios. He thanked those for attending the Greek Landing Day Celebration and the meeting. Fr. Graff read a letter from the Foundation President, Metropolitan Alexios of Atlanta, urging all to “carry on our Faith and spirit of Hellenism.”

Fr. Graff congratulated all those involved with the 21st Annual National Shrine Pilgrimage. Fr. Graff reported that in February the Shrine hosted members of Leadership 100 for a memorial service at the St. Photios Chapel, and the National Philoptochos Society contributed $15,000 for the annual Friends appeal. He expressed sincere gratitude to the Daskalakis Family Foundation Fund and the Metropolis of Atlanta Ladies Philoptochos Society for their generous support.

The Shrine associate director, Andrew Lekos reported, “Efforts are being made to enhance the Shrine by creating awareness and expanding the ministry, outreach, and witness of the National Shrine.” He stressed that maintenance of this historic site is priority, and the Foundation Endowment Fund, which was presented to the 36th Clergy-Laity Congress of the Archdiocese, will be instrumental in involving communities in the work of the Shrine. Also, churches play an integral role by purchasing candles from National Shrine Church Supplies, which offers same prices as ordering directly from manufacturer.

Shrine chaplain, Rev. Nikitas Theodosion, pastor of Holy Trinity Church in St. Augustine, reported that more services are being held in the St. Photios Chapel, especially with communities that are visiting. He encourages more pilgrimages and retreats be organized to St. Augustine. In 2003, the Shrine has hosted over fifteen groups.

St. Photios Foundation Treasurer, Ms. Maria Carantzas of Jacksonville, FL, gave the financial report. Ms. Carantzas reported that the Shrine is installing a new accounting software program, and overall the Shrine is in a positive financial position. Also during the meeting, committee chairpeople reported on the progress of various programs.

The 22nd Annual St. Photios National Shrine Pilgrimage and Trustees Meeting is February 6 through 8, 2004, which will include the first annual St. Photios Shrine benefit golf tournament. Dr. Manuel Tissura of Tucker, GA, will chair the Pilgrimage weekend, and Dr. John Grossomanides of Westerly, RI, will chair the golf tournament.

The St. Photios Shrine Archbishop Iakovos Enhancement Project chairman, Mr. Nick Furris of Jacksonville, stated that presentations of the enhancement project have been made, and the renovation of three rooms would require $100,000 each.

Greek Landing Day Celebration 2003 chairperson, Ms. Carantzas reported that on June 29 the Celebration luncheon would honor His Grace Bishop Dimitrios of Xanthos for the 20th anniversary of His Grace’s ordination to the priesthood, and over 170 guests are expected. Ms. Carantzas announced that the commemoration of the 236th Greek Landing Day would be June 26 and 27, 2004.

Mrs. Cina Daskalakis of Lutherville, MD, the Shrine Wall of Tribute chairperson shared, “The Wall of Tribute is our Ellis Island; it is where our families and communities are held in memorial.” An immediate goal is to list each Church and Philoptochos on The Wall of Tribute to help to fund the St. Photios Shrine Foundation Endowment.

Marketing chairman, Mr. Christopher D’Anna of Baltimore, MD submitted a report recommending the Foundation continue evaluating the various programs. The St. Photios Foundation Board of Trustees care for the preservation of the St. Photios Greek Orthodox National Shrine and its history through carefully planned development.

Foundation vice-president, Mr. Harry Thomas Cavalaris, of Charlotte, NC noted that, “The Shrine offers an opportunity to memorialize loved ones.” The National Shrine is a living memorial to the first Greek settlers on the American continent and to all the Greek Orthodox pioneers whose love of freedom and desire for a better life for themselves and their children brought them to this New World.

The next scheduled meetings for the St. Photios Foundation Executive Board of Trustees will be held in October and the Annual Trustees meeting will be held during the annual St. Photios National Shrine Pilgrimage on February 6-8, 2004 in St. Augustine, FL.

Contact: Andrew J. Lekos
Email: [email protected]
Tel. 904-829-8205 Fax. 904-829-8707
Website: http://www.stphotios.com