May 2016


One of the least known, yet significant feast days of the Orthodox Church is celebrated on Friday each year after Easter.  It is on this day we celebrate the dedication of one of Orthodoxy’s most precious possessions, the Life-Giving Spring of Constantinople.  It has a most amazing history and all Orthodox Christians should share in the knowledge of this treasured shrine of Orthodoxy.

During the early years of the Byzantine Empire, there lived a very pious man named Markellis (who later became Emperor of all Byzantium who was called Emperor Leo).  Markellis was a simple layman who loved to walk in the forest surrounding the city of Constantinople.  During one of  his “meditation” walks, he met a blind man who was in dire need of water to quench his thirst.  Markellis tried to lead him to water in the forest, but in vain.  As he searched diligently for water, Markellis became somewhat disheartened.  Suddenly a voice from heaven was heard saying, “Emperor Leo, you will find water deep in the forest, wash the blind man with this water and you will see the power of the Lord.”

Markellis was amazed, not only because of the strange voice from heaven, but also of the fact that he was addressed as ‘Emperor Leo.”  He did as the voice commanded him, and lo and behold he found a spring deep in the forest.  As he bathed the eyes of the blind man, suddenly the blind man could see the world for the first time in his life.  Markellis was quite shocked at the course of events.  In time, however, he did eventually become “Emperor” (457-474AD) of the vast Byzantine Empire which included more than half of the civilized world.  He immediately erected a magnificent shrine at the place where he had found the Life-Giving Spring.

The shrine became very famous over the years, and thousands journeyed to this sacred spot and were healed of their illnesses.  The Emperor Justinian (527-565AD) was healed of a strange sickness and to show his appreciation he also erected a beautiful Church at the Life-Giving Spring.  The Spring became known as the “Life-Giving Spring” during the 11th century.  Four pilgrims from ancient Thessaly began a pilgrimage to this sacred spring, but one of the pilgrims died before they reached their destination.  Before he died, the pilgrim requested that he be anointed with water from the sacred spring and then buried nearby in the forest.  As his fellow travelers carried out his dying wish by bathing him with the water from the miraculous spring, the dead man suddenly came to life.  Since that time it has been called Zoodochos Peghe (the Life-Giving Spring).

Many faithful have visited this beautiful spring outside the ancient walls of Constantinople.  Adjacent to this beautiful shrine is a Greek Orthodox hospital for the sick and the afflicted.  It is called the hospital of Valoukli.  Many of our former Patriarchs are buried in the rear of the Church of the Life-Giving Soring.  This Church has been destroyed many times by earthquakes and by the Moslems, but the Orthodox have managed to rebuild it.  The Church was dedicated on Friday after Easter, thus we commemorate this important event every year at this time.                          


May the glory of the Lord uplift you!
May His radiance embrace you!
May His mercy walk with you, all the days of your life!
For Christ Is Truly Risen Indeed!

The Pentecostarion Period Has Arrived

We have now reached the next liturgical period of time of our Orthodox Church….the PENTECOSTARION Period (the 50days between Pascha and Pentecost). This period is a well-spring of insight and continued renewal, that aids us in harvesting the fruit of Great Lent.  We need during the Pentecostarion Period to stay focused and to be watchful to continue on with the renewal that we hopefully gained during Great Lent, for the various Lenten disciplines that are a focus during Lent, (serving as a time for enhancement) are not something for just the six weeks of Lent and Holy Week, but rather year round (and life long). The good habits and virtues that grew during Lent must now be harvested.  Although less time is spent in church in the Pentecostarion and the ability to eat freely is a reality, we must not lose our self-control in all things, nor should we ignore alms giving and the performance of good works, regular prayer and study; nor the Wednesday and Friday food fasting of Orthodoxy.  We need to be sure to be the “NEW PERSON” that Christ came to develop.  We need to be people with a new mind and a new heart, or else, Christ’s suffering and death was wasted.


With our Orthodox Christian Easter having been rather late this year, next year it will be at the more normal time frame and in fact both Western & Eastern Easters will be together – Sunday April 16.  The Triodion will begin Feb 5, Great Lent will begin Feb 27, with Palm Sunday on April 9.  Mark your calendars from now and chart travel plans accordingly.


Please note that Confessions are heard year round (not simply during Great Lent or the other Lenten Periods). House Blessings and business Blessings are also held year round, not simply at the Theophany Season.  Those desiring either of these special services can contact Fr Andrew or Fr Emanuel.


We will resume the weekly Thursday Bible Study and continue with the theme from the winter study of “The Great I Cames  of Jesus” running 7:30—9PM starting on May 12.


Please be reminded that applications for both the Annunciation Scholarships and the Savvides Scholarship are due by May 20th.  Please also keep in mind the school transcripts are required with submittal. 

Ahepa Scholarship

The Ahepa Scholarship Committee is accepting applications for the local 106 Sophocles Chapter Scholarship.  The applicant has to be a son, daughter or grandchild of a chapter member in good standing.  The student has to have completed at least one semester at a College or University and must be currently enrolled at that institution.  Please call Mike Haveles at 401-965-0266 or John Vanikiotis at 401-480-9291 for an application to be mailed out.  Applications must be returned by May 15, 2016.                                  

This Year’s Graduates – In Next Annunciator

Please submit the names of parishioner graduates from high school, college, university, vocational schools and graduate degree programs to the parish office by May 20 so that we may list them in the June issue of the Annunciator, sharing in the joy and success of each household with a graduate.  Be sure to state name of school, degree received and future plans. These can be e-mailed to the parish office at <> or sent in by regular mail “Attention Newsletter”.  Mark your calendar as well for our annual Graduates Sunday Coffee Hour set for Sunday June 12, 2016.

“Our Biggest Event of the Year—Planning is About to Start”
Greek Festival Meetings Begin

We welcome people who have not served on the festival planning committee before to come join in this year and help plan for September’s big event. We proudly gather to structure this event presenting our Greek heritage and Orthodox tradition.  The first planning meeting will be held on: Tue. May 31, at 7:30 pm. The Festival dates this year are, September 9, 10, & 11.


Our biennial Spring Parish Assembly will be held on Tue. June 7th at 7 pm.              Plan to attend to hear the various reports and up-dates on special programs such as the Phase 2 renovations.

Parishioners who hold leadership positions in our various organizations are especially urged to attend.

Sunday, August 21st at Metacomet Country Club
Watch for details soon!

Dr. Mary Despina Lekas Endowment Fund News

Financial Report for the period ending 3/31/16
Endowment Fund Portfolio $764,111.48
Endowment Fund Checking Account $2,073.28

In Honor of Harry Bablenis, Parish Recognition Award, donation made to the Endowment Fund: by Mary Samaras

The Gift That Keeps on Giving

A gift to the Endowment Fund will last as long as the fund is in existence. It is a way to make a lasting contribution to support our church.

Gifts that mark Special Occasions:

Baptisms         Birthdays         Weddings        Anniversaries        Memorials       Celebratory Events

Respectfully Submitted,
Mary Samaras
Endowment Fund Secretary

We look forward to your responses to our “What If” message in the April issue of the Annunciator.  Send us your thoughts and suggestions!

Recent Joint Fund Raiser

The special gathering sponsored jointly with the Assumption Parish benefited each parish with receipts of $5,010.00.  As announced prior to the event, our parish would donate a portion of the proceeds for the construction of the St Nicholas National Shrine at Ground Zero.  At it’s April regular meeting, our parish council designated $2,000 for this important  purpose.  Also from the proceeds, $500 was donated to the Inter-Faith Food Ministry. The remainder of the proceeds will benefit the general budget.  THANK YOU to all who attended the event and supported it in any way.

Epitafios Donations

Nicholas Apostolou, Theodora Bovis-Koch & Thomas Bovis (in memory of Hercules & Mary Bovis), Donna Broccoli, M/M Constantine Christelis, M/M Gaby Daiaa, M/M Nicholas Filippou, Anna Gountra, M/M Nicholas Hantzakos, M/M Elias Haralambides, Julie Karahalios, Angelo Lazarides, M/M Vasilios Malatos, M/M Kyriakos Marantidis, M/M Vasilios Melanis, M/M George Moragemos, Dr.& Mrs. Kenneth Morrissey, Angela Provost, John B. Quinn, Shirley Sears, M/M Robert Senerchia, M/M Peter Simone (memory of Anthony, Helen & George Psilopoulos, M/M Angelos Trombettas (in memory Presv. Maria George), Sophia Tzanetos, M/M Frank Vasiliadis, James Vose, Zambeta Xiarhos.

Tues May 3 = 6PM
Weds May 11—6PM

All are welcome—men, women, especially teens & young adults!

District Convention—May 27-28-29 in Newport, RI
National Supreme Convention—July 24-30—Las Vegas, NV
Contact Lakis Andriotis or Michael Haveles for information & details.


We have a (Certified Nursing Assistant) available within our parish to help with elder care.  She has a warm and very caring personality, excellent references, and has already assisted several within our church.  She works privately and has experience with dementia, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and surgical patients among others.  Her work includes personal hygiene, meal preparation, light housekeeping, errands, etc.  This is a GREAT resource for us!  Feel free to give Christina Florio a call at (978) 317-9155 she lives in RI has helped out with our annual Festival for many years…You may already know her!!


In early September one of our parishioners in Providence would like to hire a Greek-speaking nanny for 4 days a week for approximately 40 hrs. per week.  Duties would include routine infant care as well as some light household duties.  Salary is negotiable.  For questions and to arrange for an interview, call  203-233-4526.


Our parish is the formal sponsor of Cranston Boy Scout Troop 6 which meets in our Mihailides Center most Thursday’s of the school year. They provide various courtesies to our parish in the way of special projects and especially with the Greek Festival set up, clean up and tear down.  Annually they host a fund raiser for their various troop expenses, which takes the form of a “Macaroni and Meatball Dinner”.  This year it will be Sunday May 22. Let us all make an effort to support them by staying and eating here after Liturgy that day.


Dr Charles Allendorf  of Warwick, at age 73 passed on April 19, Funeral and burial on April 25.  The sister of our parishioner Lakis Andriotis passed away in Greece.  The sister of our parishioner Michael Haralambides (Marika Staka) also passed away in Greece.
~May Their Memory be Eternal~

Since our last newsletter the following pledges have bee received for 2015:
Alex Dimitriadis, M/M Steven Renzi, Maria Vlahos

We have to date parishioners with the pledge of $155,683.66
The actual amount received to date is $113,122.98

John Alexion, Pauline Alexion, Dr. & Mrs. Peter Barth, Donna Broccoli, Artemis DiCarlo, Dr. & Mrs. Michael DiMaio, Alex Dimitriadis, M/M Stephan Erinakes, M/M Thomas Frank, Rev. Fr. Andrew G. George, Anthony George, M/M David Grosiak, Dr. & Mrs. James Karon, Dr. Mary Lekas,  M/M Brian Leroux, M/M Kyriakos Marantidis, Nicoll Marshall,  Dina Mihos, Christopher Mitrelis, Dr. & Mrs. Kenneth Morrissey, Melissa Morrissey, Stephen Morrissey, M/M George Nonis, Nicoletta Panos, Dr. & Mrs. Peter Petropoulos, M/M Lyle Rawlinson, M/M Lefteris Simijis, M/M Peter Simone, M/M Raymond Sinapi, M/M Stefanos Svitlitsas, Christos Vasiliadis, M/M Frank Vasiliadis, Adam Vinhateiro, Maria Vlahos, M/M Christos Xenophontos.

Money becomes a sacrament when it is offered to God. It becomes a visible expression of our commitment, faith and love for Jesus.  Once given to God, our gifts are consecrated by the Holy Spirit, who translates them into works of mercy that brings glory to God.


Thank you to Quick Stop, Steve Drager, Stephanie DiSumma & Alexandra Drager


In paying their stewardship, we have a number of parishioners who have their checks sent to us monthly from their accounts automatically.  Others can do likewise.  Just contact your bank and have them directly withdraw payment from your account and sent to us directly.

We also remind everyone  of the “Monthly Payment Booklet: that contains a return slip to submit a payment each month for your pledge, similar to all your monthly commitments for your home.  You can stop by the office to obtain one or we can mail it out to you.


We thank the hard working ladies of our Philoptochos Society who each and every year give donations to the parish.  In specific-$5,000.00 to the General Fund, $1,000.00 to the Greek School expenses and $1,000.00 to the Sunday Church School.  Of course different years vary with other donations made for specific purposes, such  as a recent $10,000.00 to the St. Nicholas Shrine Church construction at ground zero.


We have our annual Greek Food Fair coming up on Saturday May 14 and Sunday May 15. This is a two-day event that is held in our hall each year. It is also the 2nd largest fund raising event we have beside the summer festival. It has been a very successful fund raiser for the church over the past six years. Please see below how successful it has been.

                        Gross Revenues                Total Expenses                   Net Profit

2010               $15,857.00                           $5,132.32                              $10,724.68

2011              $19,732.76                         $7,492.40                              $12,240.36

2012               $27,571.50                           $7,358.54                              $20,212.96

2013               $29,692.50                           $12,540.52                           $17,151.98

2014               $31,119.75                           $11,086.52                           $20,033.23

2015               $34,788.54                           $12,815.53                           $21,973.01

6 YRS            $158.762.05                         $56,425.83                        $102,336.22

Needless to say, for a two-day event these numbers are fantastic. It is also a tremendous amount of work to organize and prepare for this event. We need to thank everyone who has worked and participated in this fundraiser.

With that said we are currently reaching out to people who would like to volunteer their time and help. There are many areas that require help such as baking pastry, serving on the food line, working in the kitchen or working a cash register. Please contact our church office and volunteer to help. This is a very important event.

Cordially submitted by
James Silva

GREEK FOOD FAIR 2016– May 14th & 15th

Invite your family, friends and neighbors and come enjoy the same great food as our festival! Our traditional menu will include gyro, souvlaki, lamb dishes, pastries and Greek coffee.


Saturday, May 14th, 11am – 7pm   /   Sunday,    May 15th 11am – 6pm

We ask you to offer your time and talent to this parish event!  Submit the sign-up form below to the parish office by designating your preferred work area and suggested shift schedule OR contact Elaine Crabtree at (401) 821-1058 / with your choice of date (s) and times.  Flexible shift hours will be accommodated!  Thank you for your support!



CHRISTOS ANESTI!  The Easter preparations are behind us now, and we thank all the women who in any way contributed to the many activities and responsibilities associated with this time of the year.  We are grateful to all the women who accompanied Father Andrew and Father Emanuel on Easter visits to our homebound parishioners. Thank you to all who purchased Easter Breads this year in support of Hellenic College-Holly Cross, chaired by Helen Argeris and Mary Quinn. As we come to the end of another Philoptochos year, we wish to thank you for all you do to help us in our ministry.  This has been a very rewarding year:

Our Annual Food Fair and Christmas Bazaar was a financial and social success, and we continue this long-standing event that our mothers and grandmothers started many years ago. Thank you to all who continually help and support us each year.  We are now planning for our next Bazaar which will be held on Nov. 12th-13, 2016.  We will be working throughout the summer.  If you have any ideas or suggestions, please call Georgia Pappas, 351-3927.  We welcome all your suggestions.

Operation Housewarming Veterans’ Baskets: 


For the support Philoptochos received for this most worthwhile project for our Homeless Veterans.  Whatever the donation…..a complete basket, items for the baskets, or monetary donations, we thank you all:  Josie Aliferakis (in memory of William J. Aliferakis), Betty Ann Andriotis (in memory of Bill Pappas and Spiro Retsinas), Nicholas Apostolou, Kosta and Beth Baryiames, Artemis Frangos (in memory of Peter Frangos), Anna Gountra, Bruce and Victoria Kenyon, Chris Latos, Papigiotis Family (in honor of Michael Papigiotis), Ernest, Helen and Georgia Pappas (in memory of Arthur G. Pappas and Louis Culla), Kevin and Marianne Phelan, Roula Proyous, Gus and Koula Rougas (in memory of Peter Frangos), Danielle and Richard Scott (in honor of Richard A. Scott), Dorothy Stone, Ethel Strekouras, Eleni Trikoulis, Stella Vassilopoulos, Carol Xanthakis, John and Eleni Zervos, Carroll and Angela Promades.

We also thank the St. Gregory Philoptochos, Mansfield, MA. for their donations.  His Eminence, Metropolitan Methodios, and the Metropolis of Boston Philoptochos have asked that this be an on-going Project for all Philoptochos Chapters.  Thank you to Marianne Phelan, assisted by Nancy Harritos, for completing this phase of the Project.  If you would like to donate in any way, please call Georgia Pappas with your donation 351-3927.  Thank you so much.

Prayer Shawl Ministry Project:  We continue to meet on most Monday mornings, and are always looking for ideas to expand this Project.  Over the last few weeks, we began making small Teddy Bears which will be specifically for children who are ill.  At the same time, we are crocheting our Prayer Shawls, 40-Day Blessing Baby Blankets, Preemie Blankets/hats.

Thank you to all the women who come on Monday mornings or crochet at home.  Diane DiCarlo, Lynda Poulos Theroux, Carole Xanthakis, Koula Rougas, Josie Aliferakis, Bessie Papigiotis, Anna Demetrakas, Linda Takoudis, Argiro Gionis, Georgia Pappas and Maria Zaharakos.

End-of-Year Celebrations– Save the Date:  We are in the process of making plans for our end-of-the year celebration SATURDAY, JUNE 11, 2016.  Please circle the date, and we will announce the plans as soon as they are completed.

As always, we thank you so much for all that you do and continue to do to help Philoptochos fulfill its mission…to help those in need in whichever way we can.




The revised format of the GOYA LOCK IN which was held on Saturday, April 9 –10 was a HUGE success.  The lock in started Saturday afternoon and culminated with attending Orthros  on Sunday.  We had 15 kids that spent Saturday doing team building activities, going to Monster Golf, and watching “God is not Dead.”  Much fun and growth was had by all!


Join us for the next family night on May 20h from 5:00 pm—7:00 pm for an evening of fun, food and fellowship. There will be sessions for both children and parents. RSVP to CJ Mitrelis @ 632-8752.


We thank the following Greek School students who participated as “readers” in our Friday Night Salutation Service who offered the Prayers in the original Greek text:

Alexandros Titelis, Gianna Degaitas, Alexandros Vanikiotis, Angela Marses, Nicholas Lambros, Evgenia Meltsakos, Dimitri Petrou, Elizabeth Halkidis, Savvina Arsenis.


The April 2nd Oratorical Festival for South East New England was held at our parish, with teens from 4 of our region’s parishes.  Those “ranked” to go to the next level (The Metropolis Festival) on May 14th were all from our parish.

Jr. Division:  1st place>>Katherine Mitrelis
2nd place>>Nathaniel Nichols

Sr. Division: 1st place>>Eleni Mihailides
2nd place>>Alexandra Nichols


Just ahead our parish school programs will be ending for the summer
Sunday Church School—Sunday May 29
Greek Language School—Sunday June 5


Our youth may go on the week best for them but Fr Andrew will be there the July 25th week (5th session).


Daniel Boffey, Policy Editor, The Guardian greek-islanders-to-be-nominated-nobel-peace-prize

Greek islanders who have been on the frontline of the refugee crisis are to be nominated for the Nobel peace prize with the support of their national government.  Of the 900,000 refugees who entered Europe last year most were received— scared, soaked and traveling in rickety boats—by those who live on the Greek islands in the Aegean Sea.

The islanders, including fisherman who gave up their work to rescue people from the sea, are in line to be honored with one of the world’s most esteemed awards.  Eminent academics from the universities of Oxford, Princeton, Harvard, Cornell and Copenhagen are drafting a submission in favor of awarding the prize to the people of Lesbos, Kos, Chios, Samos, Rhodes and Leros.

A petition on the website of the campaign group, Avaaz, in favor of the nomination has amassed 280,000 signatures.  According to the petition:

“On remote Greek islands, grandmothers have sung terrified little babies to sleep, while teachers, pensioners and students have spent months offering food, shelter, clothing and comfort to refugees who have risked their lives to flee war and terror.”

While the official nomination letter is yet to be finalized, it is understood the academics will implore the Nobel committee members to accept their nomination.  They say it must be noted that a people of a country already dealing with its own economic crisis responded to the unfolding tragedy of the refugee crisis with “empathy and self-sacrifice”, opening their homes to the dispossessed, risking their lives to save others, taking care of sick and injured.

In December, the image of Antonis Deligiorgis, a 34-year-old Greek army sergeant, rescuing a refugee from the turbulent waters off Rhodes was singled out as a striking illustration of the valor of those in the islands.  Only individuals or organizations are eligible to win the prize so it is likely that the “solidarity networks” on the islands—groups of volunteers who organized to help the refugees—or individuals within groups will be the official nominees.

The volunteer networks on the Greek islands have provided accommodation, hygiene packs, food, clothes and help with the next steps for refugees.  It is claimed  that the instincts of the majority of islanders set the tone across Europe towards the refugees’ plight.  Spyro Limneos, an activist in Greece for Avaaz who distributed aid on the islands, said:

“The people involved in the solidarity networks organized and helped the desperate when  the governments weren’t even willing to recognize that there was a crisis By opening their hearts the islanders sent a powerful message that human ty is above races, above nations. I will never forget seeing young girls being rescued from a boat on Leros. They were smiling.  They didn’t have suitcases or any possessions except their end-of-year school certificates written in Arabic.  They laid those down in the sun to dry out. It was a combination of tragedy and hope.”


April 2016

On Our Cover

In Psalm 141 we read: “Lord I call upon Thee, hear me.  Hear me O Lord!
Receive the voice of my prayer when I call upon Thee. Hear me O Lord.
Let my prayer rise as incense before you; the lifting up of my hands as an evening sacrifice. Hear  me O Lord!

When we enter an Orthodox Church, we instantly smell something different about the place.  We know at once that we are in a special place. The incense that we smell helps us to become aware of God, it brings us into His presence. We feel different ourselves for we experience God’s Kingdom through our sense of smell.

The above Bible passage was written by King David long ago denoting that the raising of incense was something common to  prayer used by the Jews, It has been used in Christian  worship in general and the words of this psalm are a much sung hymn in Vespers and repeated many time in the Lenten Service of the Pre-Sanctified Liturgy as well.

Smell is especially suited for experiencing an encounter with the Divine. Sweet fragrance invariably indicates divine pleasure and good will both physical and spiritual as concerns divine intention.  In fact the prayer that the priest recites each time he is to raise incense clearly indicates this:

‘We Offer Thee incense, O Christ our God,
as an odor of spiritual fragrance.
Receive it upon Thy heavenly altar and in return,
send down upon us, the grace of The Holy Spirit.”

Dr Susan Ashbrook Harvey (an Orthodox Christian, who teaches at Brown University) writes, that the use of incense (both in church and in the home) carries two primary meanings – the image of prayer rising up to God and the hope of God’s pleasure in return.

She continues saying…in the air that we breathe, there is more than that which we know.  Glimpsing heaven on earth, which is what the liturgy enables us to do. We breathe a fragrance that will become our everlasting breath of life.  As St Isaac the Syrian writes:

“He who lives with love in this creation smells life from God.
He breathes the air of the resurrection.”

May we all have a meaningful Great Lent and a Blessed Pascha ahead!
Fr. Andrew


Mondays in Cranston – Orthodoxy 101 with Fr Andrew (the basic history, teachings and traditions of the Orthodox Church – year cycle and life cycle).  March 28, April 4, 11 & 18 running from 7:30-9PM. Please call the parish office if you will attend so as to register….942-4188.

Mondays at Assumption Parish-Pawtucket / “Reflections on thePsalms” and “Reflections on the Sermon of the Mount” – from 6-8PM with John Lysikatos, graduate of the Theological School in Thessaloniki, Greece. March 28, guest presenter will be Fr George Economou on the topic of the 50th Psalm.


Donations are sought at this time to purchase new altar boys vestments…cost would be $275 each,  In preparation for Pascha, new red/white altar coverings and the additional pieces associated to it…cost would be about $1,900.  We are currently investigating for a new altar tabernacle as well…cost currently unknown but certainly up there, a thousand plus. Contact the parish office for all of the above items currently on our liturgical wish list.


As a follow up to the special IOCC Information Fund Raising Dinner back in December on  Sunday March 20 at Liturgy, a special collection was taken to benefit the refugee crisis thru the wonderful efforts of the IOCC (International Orthodox Christian Charities) which has been on the ground in Greece rendering assistance for several months now.This special tray brought in $570.Those who would also like to donate at this time for this special outreach may do so by issuing a check to “Annunciation Church” with memo lone – IOCC-Refugee Crisis.


Once again our Parish Council has chartered a bus to make it easy for people to go to the parade.  There is no fee for the bus and a Lenten lunch will be provided on it, BUT RESERVATIONS ARE REQUIRED.  Contact or by telephone 401-580-0112.  Departure from Cranston at 11am…return around 4/4:30PM.


This year’s flow of dates that designate our Triodion and Pascha Cycle as well as the Menaion observances (set monthly commemorations) is most unique…it puts the celebration of St George (April 23) on the same day as the Saturday of Lazaros (part of the Easter cycle).  This, combined with the glorious entry of our Lord into Jerusalem (Palm Sunday) makes for a double joyous April 23/24 weekend.  Then at sun set we of course enter the highlight of our liturgical year leading us to Pascha on Sunday May 1st. The weather should be in our favor throughout and we hope for good attendance!

Odyssey Dance Troupe 2016

Come and join Rhode Island’s finest Greek Dance Troupe! Meet other members who love Greek Dancing! Share in great fellowship and meet some wonderful people! Expose yourself or your child to a wonderful environment and culture!

Elementary Group:  Ages 6-10
Mondays: 6pm-7:30pm           First Practice: April 4, 2016

Junior Group:  Ages 11-13
Mondays: 6pm-7:30pm           First Practice: April 4, 2016

Senior Group:     Ages 14 & up
Thursdays: 6:30pm8:30pm

First Practice: April 14, 2016

CONTACT US if you are interested in joining
Koula & Savva Rougas

Dr. Mary Despina Lekas Endowment Fund News

Financial Report for the period ending February 2016
Endowment Fund Portfolio $752,226.25
Endowment Fund Checking Account $1,823.28

Additional in Memory of Angelo Maintanis donation made to the Endowment Fund:
by Susan Erinakas

Additional donation made to the Endowment Fund:
By M/M Matthew Massenzio


What if?

Since June, 2015, the Endowment Fund Committee has been providing you with interesting “facts and figures” explaining the importance of the Endowment Fund to our Parish as a life-line in achieving financial security.

Now, it is your turn!  What are your thoughts about our Endowment Fund?  What if the Endowment Fund had a windfall large enough to allow for many special projects to take place?  What would you like to see happen that would make our parish life even more meaningful?  What are your dreams for our church?

We would love to hear from you!  No idea is too small or too big!  Remember, nothing is impossible when it involves teamwork!  Please send us your thoughts and ideas to the attention of Mary Samaras, Endowment Fund Secretary, Annunciation Church, 175 Oaklawn Avenue, Cranston, RI 02920 or give Mary a call at 401-781-5528! 

Respectfully Yours,
Mary Samaras, Endowment Fund Secretary


Since our last newsletter the following pledges have been received for 2015:
M/M John Loezos


We have to 250 parishioners with the pledge of $141,685.00
The actual amount received to date is $97,324.32

Kyriaki Arsoniades, M/M Savvas Arsoniadis, Dr. & Mrs. Elias Awwad, Alexis Biliouris, Dr. & Mrs. Stephen Carr, Constance Georgeadys, Debra Georgeon, Argiri Ghionis, Anna Gountra, M/M Nicholas Hantzakos, George Hantzakos, M/M Demetrios Harritos, Ann Heberg, M/M Joseph Howard, M/M Ernest Kanelakos, Zoe Kazianis, M/M Robert Masiello, M/M Matthew Massenzio, M/M Peter Mihalos, Jean Mihelakos, Dolly Mnayarji, Demetria Moran, M/M Theodore Moran, M/M Christo Pakuris, Theodore Panagiotis, M/M Theodoros Panagopoulos, M/M James Pappas, M/M Arthur Passa, M/M Anthony Piscopio, Dorothy Pliakas, M/M George Promades, M/M Paul Provost, Mary Quinn, M/M David Rawlinson, M/M Nickiforos Revis, M/M Stamatios Revis, Andrew Rougas, Nanci Sarganis, M/M Nikolaos Sifakis, Peter Strekouras, Virginia Strekouras, M/M Edmund Sullivan, Mr. Thompson & Dr. Tryforos, M/M Charles Tsoumakas, Andriana Vanikiotis, Anthony Vanikiotis, Antonia Vanikiotis, M/M Peter Vassilopoulos, Dr. & Mrs. Michael Vezeridis, Antonia Vanikiotis, Adam Vinhateiro, M/M Manuel Vinhateiro, Jr. M/M Charles Xynellis, Maria Zaharakos.


Thank you to Coclin Associates (M/M George Coclin)

Epitafios Donations

Josephine Aliferakis, Dr. & Mrs. Charles Allendorf, M/M Stephen Antoniou, M/M Dionysius Argeris, M/M Dimitrios Arsenis, Dr. & Mrs. Peter Baziotis, M/M Michael Campopiano (in memory of Pres. Maria George), Rebecca Cardillo, Dr. & Mrs. Stephen Carr, Sue Cimino, M/M George Coclin, M/M Constantinos Dafoulas, M/M Wilfred Demars, M/M James Demetriou, Helen DiMaio, Artemis Frangos, Argiri Ghionis, M/M Constantine Grammas, M/M Carl Hague,  M/M Michael Haralambides, Christopher Heberg, M/M Nicholas Janikies, M/M Arthur Kazianis, M/M William Lehourites, Jason Maintanis in memory of Despina Maintanis, Elizabeth Marses, Marianthi Mastriano, M/M Emmanuel Mihailides, M/M George Mihailides, Jean Mihelakos, M/M Andrew Mitrelis, Theodore Nicolopoulos, Evangelia, Papaioannou, M/M Ernest Pappas, M/M Constantinos Perdikakis, Mary Pereira, Thomai Petropoulos (in memory of Arthur Petropoulos), M/M Polydoros Petrou, M/M Anthony Piscopio, M/M Carroll Promades, Anna Raleigh, M/M Nickiforos Revis, Mary Samaras, Nanci Sarganis, M/M James Silva, M/M Michael Sotirakos,  M/M Peter Stasinopoulos (in memory of Georgia Woods) Elle Strekouras, Ethel Strekouras, Virginia Strekouras, M/M Edward Tarbox, M/M Soterios Tsimikas, Antonia Vanikiotis (in memory of George Vanikiotis) M/M Theodore Vaphiades, Carol Xanthakis, James Vose Katherine Xiarhos, Leona Zachos, M/M Socrates Zafiriades, Jr., Maria Zaharakos.

Annunciation Luncheon Thank You’s

A full house attended our recent Sunday Observance of our parish name day on March 20th— Thank You to all who came and all who cooked.  We especially thank our food donors—Athanasios & Lena (Zafiriades) Meltsakos and the desert donors, Dr. Ken & Myrto Morrissey and Sotiri Mioni, in memory of Dr. Jacques & Eva Mioni.  We thank as well Dean Perdikakis for donating the new flags used in the Flag Raising Ceremony on our church grounds. The generous parishioners of our parish make us who we are today.  Congratulations to the children of our Greek Language Program who entertained and inspired us all with their program to our teachers and the parents and grandparents!

Wednesdays of Lent / by appointment with Fr Andrew
Friday April  22 / by appointment with Fr Andrew
Other days and other times can also be arranged with either Fr Andrew or Fr Emanuel by calling the parish office.



This 35 minute DVD will present simple, common-sense steps that can strengthen our immune system.  This DVD will show how to get better sleep, eat a healthy diet, discuss supplements, how to reduce stress and finding the right exercise.  Thursday April 7th, at 12 noon, following the monthly luncheon.  This months lunch is sponsored in memory of George & Bessie Trambukis by their daughter Kathy Coyne and she and her 2 sisters (Joanne Laferrier and Marion Panichas) will be in attendance to serve.


Congratulations to Ketty Senerchia she did it again at the RI Flower and Garden Show, she received 15 blue ribbons, 10 red ribbons, 2 yellow ribbons also received 2 National Awards.

Maria Vose is very active with gymnastics and has consistently come in 1st 2nd or 3rd  place the gymnastic competition season…just last week at the states competition at RI college she came in7th place overall, and is moving on to the regional in Shrewsbury MA.

Renee Beaudoin (Poulos family) has opened “Renee’s Boutique” from her home is making diaper cakes, tutu sets, tutu pillow cases, costumes, center pieces, barefooted sandals, hair pieces, costume T shirts for adults & children, party favors and much, much more.  Personalized included if needed.  Also any color, team characters or just a creative idea you like.  Newborn items for that special time.  Products may also be shipped if needed.

Floral Icon Donors

M/M Michael Haralambides (in memory of Angelina Katsetos). Argiri Ghionis (in memory of husband Peter). Kenneth & Marie White (in memory of Angelos Maintanis), Fr Andrew (in memory of Presvytera Maria)  THANK YOU SO VERY MUCH.


Dennis Maliangos, age 67, of Warwick, RI,  passed away on 3/9/16.  His funeral and burial was held on 3/14/16. The brother of our parishioners Antonia Vanikiotis & Argiri Ghionis passed away in Canada. The sister of our parishioners Sofia Arsenis & Zambeta Xiarhos passed away in Greece.  The father-in-law of our parishioner Charlie Tsoumakas (Robert Resnick) passed on here in RI. The father of parishioner Antonis Gavrielides (Haralambos) passed on in Cyprus. The mother of parishioner  Dina Stamatelopoulos (Efrosini Kondilis) passed on recently in Greece.

~May their Memory be Eternal~


Invite your family, friends and neighbors and come enjoy the same great food as our festival! Our traditional menu will include gyro, souvlaki, lamb dishes, pastries and Greek coffee.


Saturday, May 14th, 11am – 7pm   /   Sunday,    May 15th 11am – 5pm

We ask you to offer your time and talent to this parish event!  Submit the sign-up form below to the parish office by designating your preferred work area and suggested shift schedule OR contact Elaine Crabtree at (401) 821-1058 / with your choice of date (s) and times.  Flexible shift hours will be accommodated!  Thank you for your support!

Lazaros Saturday to Pascha

Sat.,      April 23                                                                                                                                   Saturday of Lazaros / Church School Communion                                                                                                                                                                        8:15 am   –   Orthros                                                                                                                                                            9:20 am   –   Forgiveness Prayers                                                                                                                        9:30 am   –   Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom

Sun.,     April 24                                                                                                                                    Palm Sunday / Entrance to Jerusalem                                                                               8:15 am   –   Orthros
9:20 am   –   Forgiveness Prayers                                                                                                                                                          9:30 am   –   Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom with distribution of Palms

Sunday Evening:                                                                                                                            7:00 pm   –   8:15 pm—  Nymphios Service

Mon.,    April 25                                                                                                                                    7:00 pm   –   8:30 pm—  Nymphios Service/Forgiveness Prayers afterwards

Tues.,    April 26                                                                                                                                    7:00 pm   –   8:45 pm—  Nymphios Service/Forgiveness Prayers afterwards

Wed.,   April 27                                                                                                                                             The Sacrament of Holy Oil (Euchailion)                                                                                                                                                            4:00 pm   –   5:15 pm—  Followed by anointing                                                                                                                                                            (especially for families w/ children)                                                                                                                                                            7:00 pm   –   8:45 pm—  Nymphios Service — Followed by anointing

Thurs.,  April 28                                                                                                                                    Commemoration of the Mystical Supper
6:00 am   –   7:45 am—   Vesper  / Liturgy of St. Basil                                                                                                                                                            Communion to be distributed within the proper context of the liturgy

(Thursday Evening)                                                                                                                        7:00 pm    –   10:00 pm  Reading of the 12 Gospel Narratives and Procession of                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    the Crucifixion

Fri.,      April 29                                                                                                                                    Holy and Great Friday                                                                                                                                                            10:00 am   –   11:45 am-  Service of the Royal Hours (Teens as readers)
Simultaneously the decoration of the Tomb                                                                                                                                                            4:00 pm   –    5:15 pm—  Service of the Descent from the Cross                                                                             7:30 pm   –   10:30 pm— Service of the Lamentations w/Procession

Sat.,      April 30                                                                                                                                    Holy & Great Saturday / Discovery of the Empty Tomb
9:00am   –   10:45am—  Vesper / Liturgy of St. Basil                                                                                                                                                            Communion will be distributed within the proper context of the liturgy                          11:00 pm— Chanting of the Paschal Canon

Please arrive early giving yourself time to park your car and enter the Church which will take extra time due to the large number of people who normally attend.                                                                                                                                                11:45 pm   –   2:15 am   –  Paschal Orthros & Resurrection Liturgy

Sun.,    May 1                                                                                                                                      Holy Pascha (Easter Sunday)
Noon—1:00 pm—Agape Vespers                                                                                                                                                             (Gospel Read in Various languages of the World)                                                                                                Children’s Easter Egg Hunt follows at 1:00 PM


Our much respected and enjoyed Odyssey Dance Troupe will begin their new season of practices in April……Tues April 4 (for the youth aged 6-13 and on Thur. April 14 (for those aged 14 and older).  New members are welcomed.  See flier elsewhere in this issue for all the details.

GOYA LOCK IN—Sat April 9

On Saturday April 9th to Sunday, April 10th we will be holding the first lock in of 2016. The lock-in starts at 1 pm on Saturday and will conclude Sunday before Church. We will be going Mini Golfing as part of the program on Saturday. More details and prices to come. RSVP with CJ Mitrelis at 401-632-8752


Join Hope and Joy as we attend the Providence Children’s Museum on Friday April 22. We will be meeting at the church at 3pm. If your child has a Feinstein Card please bring for free admission. More details to come. RSVP with CJ Mitrelis at 401-632-8752

Why Is Orthodox Easter so Late This Year

This may be a common question asked to our youth by non-Orthodox youth this year..   Here is the answer in brief that our Orthodox youth can share with their non-Orthodox friends in a polite manner…

– The difference is based on the fact that the Orthodox Church uses both a different calendar and a different calculation formula to determine the date of Easter.  In essence it is the calendar that was used when Jesus was on earth (and not the one used now).

– The process is also based on the observance of the Jewish Passover, known as the “legal passover” – meaning the formula the Jews used at the time of Christ, to set the date for Passover, which is not the formula used today.  The reason for this is to keep the historical pattern in place that Jesus’s death coincided with the Jewish Passover.

Oratorical Festival Review

Congratulations to all our speakersElementary Division were—Juliana Mihailides & George Grammas, Junior Division—were Anastasia Coclin, Constantine Coclin, Leticia Lekos, Katerina Mihailides, Katherine Mitrelis, Nathaniel Nichols & Demetri Petrou, Senior Division were—Alexis Arsenis, Eleni Mihailides, Alexandra Nichols & Sophia Sarkis.

Those Ranked:

Junior Division
1st Place—Nathaniel Nichols
2nd Place—Katherine Mitrelis
3rd Place—Demetri Petrou

Senior Division
1st Place—Alexandra Nichols
2nd Place—Eleni Mihailides
3rd Place—Sophia Sarkis

Concerning Parish Scholarships

Since 2010 the various named parish awards (Christelis Goya, Stella Pappas, George Pakuris and Andrew/Helen Vican) are now under the heading of “Annunciation Scholarship”.  There is now an application process that includes the submittal of the academic transcript and the writing of an essay.  Those desiring to apply can request an application form after April 15.  The scholarship is available to graduating high school seniors and continuing college students.

The Savvas Savvides Scholarship is a separate standing application process administered by a different committee as it has been for the past 40 plus years.  These applications will also be available after April 15 and also requires an academic transcript.

NEW “Spring Camp Weekend” in NH

Our Metropolis Camp is holding a first ever Spring weekend for teens —April 15 (Fri evening thru Sun).  Get details at <> or call 603-746-2132.

Cranston week at the Metropolis Summer Camp this year will be the 5th session (July 25th week).  Our youth may go on the week best for them, but Fr Andrew plans to attend the July 25th week.


We are in the middle of our Lenten Journey, and Philoptochos will be very busy with many activities leading up to Pascha:

EASTER BREADS:  Orders will be taken for Easter Breads on Sundays at the Coffee Hour following Divine Liturgy.  Helen Quinn Argeris and Mary Quinn will be taking your orders.  Please call Helen at 1-508-337-3697 to place your order.  Price per loaf is $10 and will be ready for pick up on Palm Sunday, April 24 following Divine Liturgy.

EASTER VISITATIONS:  The following Philoptochos members will be accompanying Father Andrew  and Father Manny as they visit our housebound and nursing home parishioners during the Easter season– Carol Rothemitch, Diane Mitrelis, Bessie Papigiotis, Josie Aliferakis, Kate Silva, Ann Heberg and Georgia Pappas.  Those desiring a communion visit at home who are unable to come to church should be sure to call the parish office.  Preparing the gifts for these parishioners are Ann Heberg and Ginger Pappas.  This is truly the work of Philoptochos in action.

EASTER EGGS FOR DYEING:  We will distribute eggs, netting, ribbon and dye on Saturday of Lazarus and Palm Sunday and ask that you take a dozen or two and dye them for distribution by Father Andrew at the Anastasi (Resurrection) Saturday night.  Please return to the Church Holy Friday.  Please follow the directions on the egg dye package to be sure the eggs are fully boiled.  Thank you so very much.

EPITAFIOS DECORATION:  We invite all women to come and assist with the decoration of the Epitafios.  It looks beautiful each year, and we thank Koula Rougas for undertaking the organizing of the Epitafios for many years.

DONATIONS AND OBLIGATIONS:  Since the beginning of 2016, the following has been expended: to the national Philoptochos obligations– Social Services-$350, Cancer Fund-$300, Autism Assistance-$100, St Photios Shrine-$100. Metropolis of Boston Philoptochos FOS Program-$100,  Direct to our parish: $5,000, Greek School-$1,000, Sunday School-$1,000, Savvas Savvides Scholarship-$300. To Providence Ronald McDonald House-$50, American Cancer Society-$100, Assistance to a parishioner-$710.

Our next Philoptochos meeting will be held on Monday April 18, 6:15PM Board Meeting and 7PM General Meeting.  We invite all ladies to join us and help Philoptochos continue on our mission which is to help those less fortunate and in need of our help. A blessed Great Lent to all and a glorious Easter ahead!

Georgia Pappas, President
Karen Drager, Corresponding Secretary


Parishioners regularly ask their priest about the kinds of food from which they should abstain; also how much fasting they should exercise during Great Lent.  The Fathers of the Church tell us that Lent should be more than a time of  fasting; it should also be a joyous time of feastingLent is a time to fast from certain things and to feast on others.

It is a season in which we should:

FAST from discontent……………………………….FEAST on gratitude.
FAST  from anger……………………………………FEAST  on patience.
FAST from complaining………………………..FEAST  on appreciation.
FAST from bitterness…………………………….FEAST  on forgiveness.
FAST from suspicion…………………………………….FEAST on trust.
FAST from idle gossip……………………………..FEAST on purposeful                                                                                silence.
FAST from words that pollute……………………FEAST on phrases that                                                                                                   purify.
FAST from hate and resentment………………FEAST  on love and good                                                              will.

 +Fr. Kyriakos V. Saravelas (retired)