Wednesday November 26, 2014

Epistle Reading

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 About Father Apostolos (Paul) Panos

Father Apostolos (Paul) Panos served as our parish priest from 2004 to 2005

Father Apostolos (Paul) Panos was born in Chicago, Illinois on September 25, 1959. His parents, Peter and the late Georgia Panos, were from the Province of Arkadia, Peloponnesus, Greece near Tripolis.

As a child, Father Paul worshipped at Saint Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church in Oak Lawn, Illinois and graduated from their Homer Greek Language School.

Upon graduating from a Chicago public high school, he enrolled in a technical school and was later employed by General Motors.

While active in the G.O.Y.A. athletic programs at Holy Cross Greek Orthodox Church in Justice Illinois, the Reverend Father Jon Magoulias spiritually guided Father Paul.

As a counselor at the Diocese of Chicago's Camp Fanari, Father Paul found the Holy Orthodox Faith increasingly fascinating. There, he befriended Father Chris Kerhulas, who along with Father Magoulias directed him to consider the Holy Priesthood.

In September of 1982, with the Blessings of Metropolitan Iakovos of Chicago, Father Paul pursued his religious studies at Hellenic College in Brookline, Massachusetts. He received his Bachelor's Degree in 1986,and then began graduate studies at Holy Cross Seminary, while working for the Massachusetts Department of Youth Services System as a counselor to juvenile offenders.

In August of 1988 Father Paul married Evthoxia Capous of New York City and on January 1, 1989 he was ordained to the Holy Deaconate at the Church of Saint Basil by Metropolitan Iakovos of Chicago. Father Paul first served the Lord as a Deacon at the historic Annunciation Cathedral of Boston under the pastor ship of Father Al Demos. After graduating from Holy Cross in 1989, he was immediately assigned to the Holy Diocese of Toronto and all Canada and later ordained to the Holy Priesthood by Metropolitan Soterios of Canada of June 11, 1989. Subsequently, he was appointed to serve the mission Parishes of Saint Nicholas in Sudbury, Ontario and Saint George in North Bay, Ontario.

After two years, he requested a transfer to the Chicago Diocese in order to be closer to his mother whose health was failing. He was assigned to the Church of the 12 Holy Apostles in Duluth, Minnesota. Father Paul's next call was to serve the Cathedral of Saints Constantine & Helen in Brooklyn, New York. Father Paul's mission there was to oversee the restoration of the Cathedral that was severely damaged by fire and make preparations for the rededication. Archbishop Iakovos then assigned him to Saint Demetrios Church in Jamaica, New York to assist Father Nicholas Soteropoulos. Father Paul assumed the duties of Spiritual Director of Youth Ministries and religious instructor for their schools. In addition, he was a Spiritual Advisor for many youth programs such as the Metropolitan Basketball League, New York GOYA Olympics, and Ionian Village in Greece.

On January 1, 1997, Archbishop Spyridon appointed Father Paul to the Cathedral of Saint John the Theologian in Tenafly, New Jersey to assist the Cathedral Dean, Father Ernest Blougouras, who was undergoing cancer treatments. Upon the recovery of Father Ernest, Father Paul was asked to remain at the Cathedral to assist in Pastoral duties and assume the role of Coordinator of Youth Programs. During his tenure at the Cathedral he re-established the Scouting Program and actively sponsored the Diocese Youth Programs. Furthermore, he was elevated to the Priestly Rank of Economos by Archbishop Spyridon and became a Naval Chaplain in the Reserves holding the rank of Lieutenant.

In May of 1999, the late Bishop George of New Jersey assigned Father Paul to Saint Athanasios Church in Paramus, New Jersey following the retirement of Father George X. Gallas. While at St. Athanasios, Fr. Paul saw to the completion of the church’s interior, new stained glass windows, the paying off of the mortgages of the community center and the church building. In addition through the generosity of Dr. Christos M. Cotsakos, several programs were established, the senior citizen prescription drug plan, the GOYA scholarship for graduating high school seniors from St. Athanasios GOYA, and the Hellenic Cultural Fund which is for the youth of the community to have the opportunity to embrace and experience Hellenic artistic, historical and spiritual events, programs and lectures.

On May 1, 2004, Father was assigned by His eminence Metropolitan Evangelos of New Jersey to the historic church of Saint Demetrios in Union N.J. and has begun yet another chapter in his service in the Lord's Vineyard.

Father Apostolos and Presbytera Evthoxia have three beautiful children, Peter, Georganna and Michael.

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