November 8, 2015
We are writing with a special appeal to you and your family. The Saint Nicholas Church, destroyed in the terrorist attack of September 11, 2001, is being resurrected at Ground Zero. The beautiful new building will be a House of Prayer for all people. It will tell our story, the story of the Greek Orthodox People of America.
The new Saint Nicholas is a National Shrine of our Holy Archdiocese. The design was inspired by Hagia Sophia-the great Church of Christ. It will be our American Parthenon, the Parthenon of Orthodoxy. Our Saint Nicholas National Shrine will be fashioned from the very same Pentelic marble as the temple on the Acropolis. It will rise from the ashes of 9/11. Yet, Saint Nicholas will be more.
Our National Shrine at Ground Zero stands just steps away from where so many of our parents, grandparents, and ancestors began their new life in America, in the shadow of the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. The Statue of Liberty was the first face of America to millions.
Saint Nicholas will be a perpetual Sacred Shrine to the dream that brought our fathers and mothers to the land of freedom and opportunity. The Shrine will be the only religious presence in the 16-acre site of Ground Zero, the new World Trade Center. What an inspired, miraculous opportunity for witness. Never before has there been such a Church on public land, in such a public space. It is estimated that in the next few years, millions of people will see this National Shrine of our Church. It will be a living embodiment of our Greek Orthodox Christian faith.
The national initiative for our parishioners begins on November 8. It ends December 6th – the Feast Day of St. Nicholas. Each family’s gift will be recorded for posterity on an Honor roll in the new edifice. Each will receive a Certificate acknowledging that you have joined thousands of other families across the country. Your gift will count as part of our Parish contributions. Our objective is to rebuild, furnish, and endow the Church by 2016. It is the one-hundredth anniversary of the Parish of Saint Nicholas.
Let us come together as a Church family. Let us make evident to the world the pride we feel in our Greek Orthodox Faith. Let us demonstrate our abiding love and commitment to the Church. Let us help rebuild the Saint Nicholas Greek Orthodox National Shrine at Ground Zero.
Please make your check out to Saint Nicholas Greek Orthodox National Shrine. It can be sent to the Church office, or place it in the collection tray or give to any Parish Council member. We will forward to the Archdiocese.
Fr. John Codis
John Ioannou, Jr.
Parish Council President