Church Ministries and Organizations
(Download The Cathedral of St Paul Ministries Booklet)
The establishment of a community on Long Island was first nurtured on April 21, 1944 when sixteen people attended a meeting in Mineola, New York and formed an interim committee. On June 13, 1945, The Orthodox Greek Catholic Community of Nassau and Suffolk Counties, New York, Inc. was founded. Father George Papadeas was sent here by the Archdiocese to serve as its priest in 1950.
A parcel of land was purchased on Greenwich Street in Hempstead, New York and the first Saint Paul's Church was erected. On December 23, 1950 services were conducted even though the building was not yet completed. On April 15, 1951, Archbishop Michael blessed the cornerstone of the new edifice and that evening the name of Saint Paul was voted upon to become the Patron Saint of the Church.
An influx of Greek Orthodox Christians to Long Island made it necessary to build a larger Church and Complex in order to meet the growing needs of the faithful. In 1955, the Cathedral property was purchased for $60,000. The ground breaking ceremony took place in the summer of 1957. His Eminence Archbishop Iakovos officiated in the laying of the cornerstone in 1959.
On March 16, 1960, the icon of the "Lamenting Mother of God" was seen to tear in the home of Peter and Pagona Catsounis in Island Park. The Phenomenon attracted world wide attention and thousands from near and far came to witness and to venerate the icon. The Ecumenical Patriarchate proclaimed it to be a "Sign of Divine Providence". The icon is permanently enshrined in our Cathedral.
On May 1, 1960, Father Nicholas J. Magoulias (see "In Memory of Fr. Magoulis") was ordained to the priesthood in the new church. He served three years as an assistant. In 1963, he assumed the pastoral helm of the Community and officially retired in January 2006 after 46 years of dedicated service. On October 17, 1971, His Eminence, Archbishop Iakovos, consecrated the Church. The holy relics of the Christian Martyrs and Saints George, Tryfon, and Parthenios were interred in the Holy Alter Table. Father Joakim Valasiadis was assigned to the parish on this day and faithfully served our Community for 35 years.
In 1974, the mortgage of the Church was burned. In the same year a vast parcel of land was purchased contiguous to the parking lot which gives access to Hilton Avenue. Later, the corner house on Cathedral Avenue was bought and is presently being used as an educational building named in honor of Constantine and Carol Cassis.
His Eminence officially proclaimed Saint Paul's Church as the Cathedral of Long Island on Palm Sunday, April 3, 1988. At this time Father Nicholas J. Magoulias was appointed Dean of the Cathedral and Father Joakim Valasiadis Ecclesiarch of the Archdiocese.
The Parishioners were deeply honored and blessed with the historic visit of His All Holiness Dimitrios, Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople, and the Holy Synod on July 17, 1990. Evening Services were conducted and a reception and dinner was hosted by the Community.
Fr. Luke Melackrinos was assigned in 2003 to the Cathedral of St. Paul and elevated to proistamenos (pastor) in 2006. Fr. John Vlahos was assigned as assistant from 2006-2008. Fr. Andreas Vithoulkas served as assistant from 2008-2011. Currently, Fr. Panagiotis Zougras serves as assistant beginning his service in December 2011.
Clergy office hours are Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. However, during these hours they are frequently out of the office performing visitations or other pastoral ministries. It is, therefore, best to schedule an appointment if you wish to meet with them.
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Father Luke Melackrinos is a graduate of the Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology class of 2003. He was ordained to the Diaconate on March 31, 2002 by Metropolitan Gerasimos of San Francisco at the Greek Orthodox Church of St. George in Bethesda, Maryland. Fr. Luke was ordained to the Holy Priesthood on the feastday of St. Kosmas of Aitolos in 2003 (August 24) by Metropolitan Gerasimos at the Greek Orthodox Cathedral of St. Paul.
He is married to Marusia (Podhurec) the daughter of a Ukrainian Orthodox priest. Marusia has a Master’s Degree in Guidance and Counseling and is full time mother to Eleni (born in July, 2001), Magdalena (born July 2005) and Mia (born January 2010).
Under the guidance of Fr. Luke, many vibrant, Christ-centered ministries were initiated and re-initiated at the Cathedral of St. Paul, including, the St. Paul's Nursery School, Vacation Church School, the Little Angels Program and regular service at the Mary Brennan Inn, a soup kitchen serving the local Hempstead community, and the weekly food run which feeds over 100 needy people in Hempstead each Saturday morning. The entire Melackrinos family rejoices at being part of the community of St. Paul.
Fr. Constantin is originally from Romania and came to the United States in 2002 to study Theology. He graduated from Hellenic College with a Bachelor of Arts in Religious Studies in 2006. He continued his studies at Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology and earned his Masters of Divinity in 2009.
After moving to New York City in the fall of 2009, Fr. Constantin began working at the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America. There, he worked for the Office of the Secretariat of the Holy Eparchial Synod, for the Ecumenical Office, and the Department of Philanthropy.
Fr. Constantin was ordained to the Diaconate on June 14, 2014 by His Grace Bishop Sevastianos of Zela, and to the Priesthood on January 25th by His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios of America, both at the Cathedral of St. Paul in Hempstead, New York.
Fr. Constantin married his wife, Presvytera Alexandra (Pac-Urar) in 2008. Presvytera Alexandra is a post doctoral fellow at Columbia University. Fr. Constantin and Presv. Alexandra have two daughters, Ileana (born July 2013) and Natalia (born October, 2015).
The entire Ursache family feels very blessed to be part of the beautiful family of the Cathedral of St. Paul.
Church Office Staff
Hermea Drivas (Stewardship)
Church Office Hours
The Church Office is open from Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. except for holidays. You can contact the office by phone at (516) 483-5700 (messages may be left 24-hours a day), fax at (516) 483-5700 or e-mail Church Office
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Schdule of Sunday Services
|1st Divine Liturgy
|2nd Divine Liturgy
Other occasional services (Paraklesis, Salutations, etc.) are scheduled as announced in the weekly Sunday Bulletin and on the Church Web site.
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The Epistle is produced and mailed five times a year (every two months except summer).
The Sunday Bulletin is published each week and provides each worshiper with Scriptural references, announcements, articles, church organization contacts and the upcoming schedule of Parish events and programs. Copies are available on Sunday in the Narthex as you enter the Cathedral. Articles and announcements must be submitted to the Church office no later than Wednesday 12:00 noon.
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