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Archbishop Demetrios Reappoints
Maria Logus National Philoptochos President!

His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios, Primate of the Greek Orthodox Church in America, and Chairman of the Greek Orthodox Ladies Philoptochos Society announced the reappointment of Maria Logus of New York to a second term as National Philoptochos President at the inaugural meeting of the 2016-2018 National Philoptochos Board held on October 14 at the Marriott Marquis in New York.  Archbishop Demetrios praised Miss Logus for her deep commitment to Philoptochos and the Church and commended her first term as President.
 
National President Maria Logus is a lifelong resident of the New York City borough of Brooklyn and parishioner at Kimisis Tis Theotokou Church.  She is currently a lawyer for the New York State Unified Court System.  She joined Philoptochos at age 18, following in the footsteps of her grandmother, and her mother, and held multiple leadership roles in the organization before being appointed National Philoptochos President for the 2014-2016 term.
 
At the outset of her first term President Logus announced that Philoptochos would return to basics and “do more doing,” with new and ongoing hands-on initiatives. She challenged chapters across the country to offer 250,000 meals to the hungry and homeless and at the end of the term reported a final count of 750,000 meals, triple the original amount.  She launched a Philoptochos project in tandem with the nationwide day of volunteering, “Make a Difference Day,” that would include children and families in acts of kindness to instill in our youth the spirit of making a difference in the world.
 
Under her leadership, digital communications were expanded to include educational and promotional videos, webinars, podcasts and electronic publications.  She presided at the Children’s Medical Fund Luncheon, the principal National Philoptochos fundraising event, in October 2015 in Boston, where grants were disbursed to hospitals and organizations throughout the Metropolis of Boston.  Her term culminated in a successful National Biennial Philoptochos Convention in July in Nashville, where hundreds of delegates celebrated the 85th anniversary of the organization.
 
On accepting the appointment and the charge of Archbishop Demetrios, President Logus states, “With our vital and dedicated National Board, I look forward to doing even more philanthropic work, with a continued emphasis on hands-on philanthropy and intergenerational inclusiveness.”
 
His Eminence gave the oath of office to the new National Board for the term 2016-2018.
 
The members of the new Executive Board are:  Jeannie Ranglas, First Vice President; Evangeline Mekras Scurtis, Second Vice President; Joanne Stavrakas, Third Vice President; Barbara Pasalis, Secretary; Martha Stefanidakis, Treasurer; and Georgia Vlitas, Assistant Treasurer.  In advisory positions are Deana Balahtsis, Legal Advisor; Maria Stavropoulos, Protocol Officer; and Irene Steffas, Parliamentarian.
 
Continuing in their role on the Executive Board are Jennifer Constantin, Direct Archdiocesan District President; Pam Argyris, Metropolis of Chicago President;  Frances Levas, Metropolis of Boston President; Barbara Vittas, Metropolis of Denver President; Dee Nicolaou, Metropolis of Atlanta President; Margaret Yates, Metropolis of Detroit President; Crystal Thomas, Metropolis of Pittsburgh President; Jeannie Ranglas, Metropolis of San Francisco President and Anastasia Michals, Metropolis of New Jersey President.
 

Click above to read the all-new digital version of the newsletter.  In it, you will find a recap of the 2014-2016 term, as well as direct links to videos and presentations from the 2016 Biennial Convention.  We hope that you enjoy it!

Tragedy for the People of Louisiana
On August 11, torrential downpours occurred in areas surrounding Baton Rouge and Lafayette, Louisiana causing unimaginable devastation.  The needs are tremendous for our brothers and sisters in Christ and the Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church in Baton Rouge.  For more information, click here.
PODCAST:
National Philoptochos Emergency Fund
The National Philoptochos Emergency Fund was established to help those in the U.S. and throughout the world affected by natural disasters such as blizzards, hurricanes, floods, earthquakes, tornadoes and wild fires.  This discretionary commitment enables Philoptochos to respond quickly and efficiently with compassion and aid.  Through the generosity of our faithful chapters, we have been able to offer comfort, hope and monetary assistance totaling $298,100 since the Fund’s inception in 2007.
 
In 2015 we distributed $20,000 for the Nepali Disaster Relief Fund as first response aid to assist those affected by the devastating earthquakes. 
 
At the 2016 National Biennial Philoptochos Convention, $25,000 was donated to International Orthodox Christian Charities (IOCC) for victims of the West Virginia Floods.  Subsequently, even more flooding occurred in the South, and $35,000 was donated to the Metropolis of Atlanta to cover urgent needs while the Louisiana Floods Relief drive was being established.  Thank you to those who have contributed.
Retired Clergy and Widowed Presvyteres Benevolent Fund
Hellenic College Holy Cross September Scholarship Appeal
Marian Catechis and Philippa Condakes, HCHC Co-Chairs
 
Hellenic College Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology has begun a new year with 190 students on campus-- undergraduates, graduates and seminarians.  The current tuition, room and board is $38,000.  Approximately 95% of the undergraduates receive some financial aid and all of the seminarians receive some financial aid.

Philoptochos provides scholarships both in the Spring and Fall.  During 2015, Philoptochos awarded $78,500 in scholarships.  In the spring of 2016, we awarded $41,700, providing 29 scholarships and 4 merit scholarships to students at HCHC.

We thank the Philoptochos chapters for their continued support of Hellenic College Holy Cross. 
Philoptochos Supports UNICEF
On August 3, Philoptochos UNICEF Committee Co-Chair Ourania Soumas (right) presented $50,000 to Caryl Stern (left), President and CEO of UNICEF USA Fund and Rachel Steinberg (not pictured), Director, Global Cause Partnerships of UNICEF USA Fund, earmarked for work to end child trafficking.  Stern's office was filled with gifts and mementoes from children around the world.

Click
here for an article on the UNICEF website about the donation.

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month

The National Domestic Violence Hotline is 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) for anonymous/confidential help, referrals and local programs, 24/7.

For more information, please go to the Social Services Department section of the Philoptochos website and scroll down on the Fact Sheets & Resources page to the Domestic Violence section.

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month
Martha Driscoll, Cancer and Other Major Illnesses Committee Chair
Breast Cancer Awareness Walk
Ascension of Our Lord Philoptochos, Lincolnshire, Illinois

The Power of Philoptochos! Honoring the memory of those we lost, supporting those fighting the disease, celebrating the survivors!
Yellow leaves, red apples, bright pumpkins and lots of pink ribbons surprisingly blend together in October to “celebrate” Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Splashes of pink everywhere in October are bold reminders to stay healthy, learn cancer screening guidelines, and be aware of the latest research in the prevention of breast cancer.
 
First and foremost, the American Cancer Society (www.cancer.org) urges us “to take control of our health” to help reduce our risk for all types of cancer:
 
1) Stay away from all forms of tobacco.
2) Get to and stay at a healthy weight.
3) Get moving with regular physical activity.
4) Eat healthy with plenty of fruits and vegetables.
5) Limit how much alcohol you drink (if you drink at all).
6) Protect your skin.
7) Know yourself, your family history, and your risks.
8) Get regular check-ups and cancer screening tests.
 
October brings awareness of the importance of self-examination and mammogram-screening specific to the early detection of breast cancer. Current guidelines for mammogram-screening (www.cancer.org) are listed for various age groups:
 
Women ages 40 to 44 should have the choice to start annual breast cancer screening with mammograms (x-rays of the breast) if they wish to do so.
 
Women age 45 to 54 should get mammograms every year.
 
Women 55 and older should switch to mammograms every 2 years, or can continue yearly screening.
 
Screening should continue as long as a woman is in good health and is expected to live 10 more years or longer.
 
Also, according to the American Cancer Society, “all women should be familiar with the known benefits, limitations, and potential harms linked to breast cancer screening. They should know how their breasts normally look and feel and report any breast changes to a health care provider right away.”
 
Some women – because of their family history, a genetic tendency, or certain other factors – should be screened with MRIs along with mammograms. (The number of women who fall into this category is very small.) Talk with a health care provider about your risk for breast cancer and the best screening plan for you. (www.cancer.org
Philoptochos was recently featured in a BE THE BEE video from the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese's Department of Youth & Young Adult Ministries (Y2AM).  It encourages philanthropy with the women of Philoptochos as role models!

Check out the National Philoptochos YouTube Channel!

Subscribe or add to your Favorites the NATIONAL PHILOPTOCHOS YOUTUBE CHANNEL and you will have quick access to the videos we create, ones that are created for us, and those that are pertinent to our philanthropic work.

Here are some of the videos you can watch or show at your Metropolis and Chapter Meetings:

-What is Philoptochos?
-The Face of Philoptochos- 85th Anniversary
-Apostoli, the philanthropic agency of GOA in Athens
-Philoptochos Social Services Training Webinars
-I Am HCHC
-President Maria Logus Ministry Update

-The Be the Bee video

and much, much more

Philoptochos Feeds the Hungry through Community Pantries
As part of the Feeding the Hungry program, we are gathering information and photos from chapters whose church is participating in a community pantry.  We will share the “best practices” from this information with all chapters to inspire them to create a new pantry or improve the one they already have.
If your chapter has a pantry, would you kindly share with us the details?
  • Church, Chapter, City, State
  • Description of your food pantry space
  • Who runs it?
  • How does it work?
  • Is it a partnership?
  • Who contributes and how?
  • What are the main contributions?
  • How is the food distributed?
  • Any experience you would like to share or tips to help others
  • Problems or issues
  • Photographs of your volunteers participating in this ministry.  We cannot use photos that show the faces of our guests. Photos must be emailed, preferably in JPEG form.
Please email this information to 250thousandmeals@philoptochos.org .  If you have any questions, you can also use email above. 
2018 Chapter Challenges

The Chapter Challenge program was initiated at the 2004 National Philoptochos Biennial Convention and the first group of chapters presented in 2006.

Nine chapters are selected in consultation with the Metropolis Presidents, one from each Metropolis, at each Convention. They are given $100 seed money each and the challenge is to select a project that reflects the work of Philoptochos.  Chapters develop, design, and implement a project of their own creation and choice.  Some suggestions are literacy, the disabled, food bank, shelter for women and/or children developmentally challenged children, and Alzheimer’s.  Projects are monitored and the chapters report and share their experience at the subsequent Convention.  

The following chapters will present their work at the 2018 National Philoptochos Biennial Convention:

Direct Archdiocesan District

Chapter 0062, St. Paraskevi, Greenlawn, New York, President, Georgia Constantine

Metropolis of Chicago

Chapter 2054, Assumption, Town and Country, MO, President Eleftheria Marco

Metropolis of Boston

Chapter 3041, St. George, Springfield, MA, President, Debra Ciejek

Metropolis of Denver

Chapter 8022, St. George, Albuquerque, NM, President, Stephanie Gianopoulos

Metropolis of Atlanta

Chapter 5012, St. Nicholas Cathedral, Tarpon Spring, FL, President, Tina Chagaris

Metropolis of Detroit

Chapter 7007, St. Nicholas, Ann Arbor, MI, President, Vangie Kolokithas

Metropolis of Pittsburgh

Chapter 6011, St. Paul Church, N. Royalton, OH, President Stephanie Ocker

Metropolis of San Francisco

Chapter 4037, St. John the Baptist, Las Vegas, NV, President, Bernadette Anthony

Metropolis of New Jersey

Chapter 1034, Cathedral of St. John the Theologian, Tenafly, President, Stella Baker


Remembering 9/11
Saint Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church and National Shrine


Jennifer Constantin ~ Arlene Siavelis Kehl ~ Anne Michals, Co-Chairs
The terrorist attack on September 11, 2001, left a giant gaping hole in the the New York skyline and destroyed everything in the surrounding area referred to as Ground Zero in Lower Manhattan, including Saint Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church.  Now, so many years later the new World Trade Center complex has become a symbol of American pride and determination. 
 
The World Trade Center complex, once thought of as a living symbol of man’s dedication to world peace, has been replaced by several buildings housing many banking and financial industry giants, including One World Trade Center, the 9/11 Memorial, the National September 11th Memorial Museum, the World Trade Center Transportation Hub, the World Trade Center Performing Arts Center and our own Saint Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church and National Shrine.  Just opposite of the new Saint Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church will be the brand new Liberty Park, in which visitors will see the 27-foot tall bronze “Sphere” that survived the 9/11 terrorist attacks and symbolizes the strength of Americans in the face of terror.
 
In a special message sent throughout the country, National Philoptochos President Maria Logus reminded us that 15 years ago during the tragic events of 9/11, precious lives were lost and today, memories of that day still flood our minds.  But now, with the passage of time, we should also turn our thoughts to those who were left behind.  Days, months and years have passed but, for them, the pain lingers and the healing continues.

With the historic construction of the St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church and National Shrine at the World Trade Center, the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America will offer the world a beacon for the Orthodox faithful and a place of healing for all who seek the comfort and love of the Church.  With your support, the St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church and National Shrine will stand forever as a testament to the healing power of faith, a towering embodiment of the Lord’s warm and loving embrace.  With your support, we can bring to the world the eternal message that love and faith must always prevail. 

Please remember the thousands of innocent souls lost on that fateful day in your prayers.  Please remember all those who continue to bear the loss.  And please remember the extraordinary opportunity offered to each of us to participate in healing the gaping wound inflicted on all of us by those who committed this heinous crime that day.  

Together let us build this House of Worship by offering a gift and/or holding a fundraising event.  Please donate directly to the local Philoptochos chapter(s) in your area or your Metropolis Philoptochos.  For further information and resources, visit www.philoptochos.org/news/saintnicholas.   Thank you for your support and your prayers. 
Top photo-Liberty Park, with St. Nicholas Greek in background.
Bottom right- St. Nicholas as seen from Liberty Park.  Bottom left- St. Nicholas aerial view.

 Photos courtesy of Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America/Orthodox Observer






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Greek Orthodox Ladies Philoptochos Society · National Philoptochos Office · 126 East 37th Street · New York, NY 10016 · USA

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