Home Church & Religion Archbishop Elpidophoros Visits Chicago, IL

Archbishop Elpidophoros Visits Chicago, IL

CHICAGO, IL–Metropolitan Nathanael welcomed Archbishop Elpidophoros of America to his Holy Metropolis on Wednesday March 22nd, commencing the first Archepiscopal visit of the Centennial year to the Metropolis of Chicago –which is comprised of 58 parishes and two monastic communities throughout Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri and Wisconsin.

Today, March 24th, the Archbishop began the day with a special visit to Greece’s Consulate General in Chicago at the invitation of the country’s diplomatic officials. After exchanging greetings, he departed for Wisconsin to make a pilgrimage to the Convent of St. John Chrysostomos. While there, Abbess Melanie and the Sisterhood will join His Eminence in memorial prayer at the tomb of the former Metropolitan of Chicago, Iakovos, who is interred at the monastery.

Later today in Milwaukee, Archbishop Elpidophoros will visit the landmark Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church. Known for its unique design by architect Frank Lloyd Wright, it is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Festal Vespers in celebration of the Church’s patronal feast will begin at 6:00. The community will offer Artoklasia during the service and a reception will follow.

Friday March 25th (tomorrow), the Cathedral of the Annunciation Greek Orthodox Cathedral, Chicago’s Metropolitan Seat in the heart of Downtown, celebrates its feast day. Archbishop Elpidophoros, together with Metropolitan Nathanael of Chicago, the Metropolis Chancellor Bishop Timothy of Hexamilion, and local clergy will celebrate divine liturgy in the morning at 8:00.

Immediately after the liturgy, Archbishop Elpidophoros and Metropolitan Nathanael will join Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot and Emmanuel Koumbarakis, Consul General of Greece in Chicago, at 1:00 on the Richard J. Daley Center Plaza for the City of Chicago’s municipal Greek Independence observance. This is annual public ceremony, hosted by the Federation of Hellenic American Organizations of Illinois, is a celebration of Freedom and Democracy honoring Hellenes and Philhellenes who surrendered their lives for these ideals during the Greek struggle for independence in 1821. After the customary flag raising and wreath laying ceremonies, a Proclamation from Governor JB Pritzker will be read, and Chicago Mayor Laurie Lightfoot will be recognized for her service to Chicago’s Greek Community.

The Archepiscopal visit will conclude in the evening of the same day at the historic Assumption Greek Orthodox Church, where the Archbishop of America will preside over Great Vespers for the Leave-taking of the Annunciation and Salutations to the Mother of God. The community was founded in 1925 by early Greek immigrants to Chicago living in the Austin neighborhood of the city’s west side (as well as the western suburbs of Cicero and Oak Park). More familiarly known as Kimisis to its parishioners, it bears the distinction of having produced more clergymen than any single Greek Orthodox parish in North America—42 priests and 3 bishops (listed in order of elevation to the episcopacy): Bishop Demetrios of Mokisos, Bishop Spyridon of Amastris, and Bishop Timothy of Hexamilion.

Following his departure from the Metropolis of Chicago, Archbishop Elpidophoros will make an Archepiscopal visit to the Metropolis of San Francisco, where he will remain through the close of the month.