The THREE HIERARCHS Parish, Yesterday and Today
Of the 6 Greek Orthodox Churches that exist in Brooklyn, N.Y., the Three Hierarchs Parish is the second oldest community. Three Hierarchs was named by Archbishop Alexander in 1922 the result of the efforts of three laymen from the southern part of Brooklyn. These three appealed on behalf of the immigrant laboring community to establish a new church community to be located in Brooklyn in the Coney Island area. The three businessmen who appealed to Archbishop Alexander were Vasilios, Ioannis and Gregorios.
By Divine Inspiration, the name of the new community was named in honor of the three businessmen who appealed to Archbishop Alexander, as a result, Three Holy Hierarchs; Saint Vasilios the Great, Saint John Chrysostomos and Saint Gregorios the Theologian became the name of the new community. The Three Hierarchs Parish was chartered in 1929 and has since grown to serve the Brooklyn Orthodox Community for eight decades.
Three schools are operated through the parish community; A Parochial School, A Greek Afternoon School and a Catechetical School, there is a full compliment of 130 students. The uniqueness of the Parochial School is its outreach to the Greater Christian Orthodox Community of Brooklyn. There is an 85% enrollment of Russian, Ukrainian and Georgian students. These students are taught the Greek language, history tradition and Orthodox Faith of their fathers.
There are 26 philanthropic, fraternal, civic athletic and scouting programs in and through the parish; ranging from AHEPA and the DAUGHTERS of PENELOPE, PHILOPTOCHOS, P.T.A. and P.T.O., BOY and GIRL SCOUTS, GREEK AMERICAN VETERANS ASSOCIATION POST #1 and a multitude of activities, excursions and events. THE GREEK FOOD FESTIVAL highlights the outreach to the American and Hellenic Community, usually held for two weeks in June.
Since the Three Hierarchs Community was founded, there have been only 4 Pastors who have Shepered the community. They are the present Pastor, Archimandrite Eugene N. Pappas, who served for over 35 years to date. Father Eugene is also the President of the Metropolitan New York Greek Orthodox Clergy. He is also a renowned civic activist and public speaker as evidenced by his 19 years broadcasting on the COSMOS FM Program “Matters of Conscience” each and every Saturday from 1 to 2 P.M. As scholar educator, he has been teaching Orthodox Theology in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn/Queens for the last 26 years. He is also distinguished as the First Foreign Missionary of the Holy Archdiocese of Archbishop Iakovos. He helped open the way for the Orthodox Christian Mission Center of the USA.
The uniqueness of this humble parish by the sea, is that, under one roof are three distinct Orthodox Communities, each function in their own language in separate but equal liturgies, each week. There is Greek, Russian and Ukrainian with their own clergy conducting services in their native tongue. A 4th group, the Armenian Orthodox have established themselves in 2007, at the Three Hierarchs. The Armenians have their own clergy and speak in their own native tongue, through a catechetical and cultural program each Sunday.
Three Hierarchs is a prophetic church community as it extends its hospitality to all in the embrace of Orthodoxy and natures as the “Mother Church” for newly arrived immigrants of Russia, Georgia, Ukraine and Armenia. It is a reflection of the Holy Sea of Constantinople preaching, teaching and reaching those beyond our ethnic Hellenic Identity to Come Home, to Return to the Faith of Our Fathers!
Three Hierarchs Greek Orthodox Church
First 50 Years Commemorative Book