Winter 2012/13 News:
Season of Giving
We begin in November and kick-off a Food Drive to benefit the local food pantries. This year took special meaning for us as our efforts help feed the many New Jerseans devastated by Hurricane Sandy damage. While our community took a beating (power outages and property damage), we were fortunate compared to so many in our Metropolis. We often do a Soup for Sale the last Sunday of the Food Drive (offering Avgolemono soup and other varieties) to raise money for a monetary donation to the FoodBank. This year 24 of our people including half a dozen GOYANs went to Hillside to volunteeer on a Saturday morning at the FoodBank. When we celebrated our patron St Nicholas at Vespers and on the Feast Day, we held a special collection for the Metropolis Sandy Relief Fund and were able to to send a check for $1,000. We also are working with our Metropolis of NJ Social Services to provide needed items for a Greek family wiped out by Sandy. In December, we began our Giving Tree to donate presents benefitting Newark area disadvantaged children (Newark is where our founding church was originally located and we give back to the community) through DYFS and the JFK School for autistic, disabled and medically fragile kids. This year Toys 4 Tots did not have any toys for the JFK School so we took on additional children, doubling last year’s total to 200. The ladies are assembling goody bags to go along with the gifts. A dozen of us will volunteer to serve and give out gifts at the Christmas party on Dec 19. We also hold a special loukoumathes sale and raffle for a paraplegic gentleman our Philoptochos and parish befriended, sending him a Christmas card signed by parishioners for a personal touch. Our chapter provides volunteers to serve at the coffee hour following our Choir’s July 16 Christmas program in the evening. Our major fundraiser this month is a Christmas pastry sale and Vasilopita sale in December. Our end of year Christmas party has recently been held as a casual potluck in early January (Protohronia party) when things are quieter and after Lent. It is a chance to regroup, socialize and recharge for the new year.
Vivian R. Pagoulatos, RPh, MBA
President, Philoptochos St. Dorkas Adelphotis
Ss. Nicholas, Constantine and Helen Greek Orthodox Church
Roseland, NJ 07068
Fall 2012 News:
Our parish and chapter had a busy autumn this year.
- Our National Board and Philoptochos Metropolis of NJ President Anne Michaels and Metropolis Board and Past President, St Andrews Philoptochos, Eleni Constantinides, presented the grant checks to dravet.org and Mom2Mom.
September Philoptochos Activities:
Our chapter baked glyka for the festival (with their friends and daughters). Every active, able-bodied Philoptochos member volunteered/supported Roseland GreekFest to make this first festival in our Roseland facility a resounding success.
- We sponsored a cooking demonstration by Chef Dean on the first day of the festival. Chef Dean has helped our chapter raise thousands of dollars through annual cooking demonstrations. For his recipes, check his blog www.themadgreekday2758.blogspot.com.
- Our very own Stacy Militiades demonstrated making tzatziki dip and Sharyn Hanzimanolis demonstrated the art of marking stuffed grape leaves for YaYa’s Kouzina.
We hosted a Bone Marrow Drive, with the blessing of our Metropolis, during Roseland GreekFest on Saturday Sept 29th and we added 51 people to the Bone Marrow Registry. Recent Philoptochos drives added 328 potential donors.
- Thanks to volunteers from our sister chapters at St. Athanasios Paramus and St. Andrews for helping staff the drive. God bless you for your sisterly agape and Christian compassion.
At the parish-sponsored Byzantine Concert in October, our ladies also helped with the coffee hour/reception organized by Mrs. Ourania Aivaliotis, Board member, and Mrs. Stacy Miltiades.
Yours in Christ – Vivian R Pagoulatos, President St Dorkas Adelphotis Chapter
Winter 2012 News:
November and December are the busiest times for our chapter. This is when our Season for Giving activities peak and our chapter holds fundraisers to help pay for our social services projects at year end.
Breakfast at Bloomingdale’s Report on Fashion Show – great success! We raised almost $5,000 and the show was sold out weeks in advance. Thank you to our sister chapter at Holy Trinity for getting us started on this enjoyable fundraiser.
Season for Giving Food Drive
We doubled the amount of nonperishables donated to the Community Food Bank of NJ in Hillside which supplies most NJ food pantries. Given that our members are spread out over 4-5 counties, this is one way to ensure that all our neighbors are helped.
December Fundraisers – the chapter raised over $2,000 from the pastry sale and vasilopitas. We also raised over $200 by selling Byzantine decoupage-style Christmas ornaments.
St Nicholas Feast Day – in honor of our first St. Nicholas feast day in our beautiful new church in Roseland, the chapter donated a pamphlet on St Nicholas and provided a lovely coffee hour (donated by the ladies and generous parishioners) for the Vespers and desserts for the Name Day.
Report on Social Services for December 2011
- Giving Tree program – donated toys for 100 Newark area DYFS children (run by Dede Portas & Kathy Foley).
- Donated $500 plus $30 gift card to Greek family from Lodi (Metropolis social services case).
- Raised $440 for Dimitri (Montclair boy with leukemia – Dede’s student); provided the family with $100 Shop Rite gift cards and Greek pastries.
- Alex Marcou family – gift basket (Anna Prokos’s Golden Coin).
- Kosta Fund Bougatsa sale – parish raised $2,100 from raffle, donations & bougatsa sale; Anonymous donor gave annual $10,000 gift; Kosta is a paraplegic Greek gentleman who the parish befriended 20 years ago and is an approved Metropolis case. Every Christmas we hold a special fundraiser and send him Christmas cards signed by the parish and our Greek school. Several of our parishioners call Kosta during the year to let him know he is not forgotten.
- AGAPE Ministry Christmas Visitations to the homebound – our ladies joined Father Seraphim in December to visit parishioners, bringing cheer and koulourakia and poinsettas.
- Provided a loaner Ipad (borrowed from a generous parishioner) to our psalti who is recovering from serious surgery.
- Dec 18 Christmas concert – Philoptochos wishes to thank Mr. Jim Vardakis for his many years of service to our church community and his friendship and support to the philanthropic aims of the Philoptochos.
- Proto Hronia/Christmas party on Jan 4th was a tremendous success with 75-80 attendees. Our Winter White theme was well received. Our ladies provided potluck dishes and donations to cover beverages and catered food!
- Thank you to our friends from Holy Trinity, St. Anna’s, St Andrew’s and St George Clifton for attending the above events.
St Basil fundraiser
This year our fundraiser benefitting St Basil was a Young Greek Professionals social networking event held at the Marco Polo in Summit on December 28. The check for $400 for handed to Father Kosta Sitaras during Holy Trinity’s Vasilopita Sunday event in January.
Our chapter donated Vasilopita and handed the pieces out after liturgy the first Sunday in January as a thank you to our generous parish.
The chapter, along with our sister chapter at St Andrews, hosted the St Basil children to an Army Hockey Game at West Point on January 27 through the auspices of one of our parishioners, Cadet Alexander G. Pagoulatos, Class of 2012.
It was attended by Eleni Constantinides of the Metropolis Board.
Yours in Christ,
Vivian R. Pagoulatos
Vivian Pagoulatos (President)
Vikki Glock (Vice President)
Eleni Michael (Vice President)
Elisa Demetropoulos (Treasurer)
Mary Theodos (Assistant Treasurer)
Salomi Massaras (Corresponding Secretary)
Pat Spenzos (Recording Secretary)
Fall 2011 News:
Chapter Background: Our chapter is a merger of the Philoptochos Chapters of St. Nicholas (Newark) and Ss. Constantine and Helen (Orange). We have a membership of around100 members. Many parishioners live 30-40 minutes away from the church. To accommodate busy schedules and carpooling we now have our meetings after Sunday liturgy (second Sunday of the month).
We are preparing to enter into our new church in Roseland this month. The Thyranixia on September 25, 2011 will be a joyous occasion for all.
Activities: We are a chapter in transition, doing many of the traditional Philoptochos activities (church cleaning during Lent, hosting Nameday/Vespers, Koliva and Prosforo) and introducing newer activities (a more active Social Services program, Go Red/ Breast Cancer Awareness, visiting Soup Kitchens), etc. Most of our active members are also active within other church ministries, which limits their availability with the Philoptochos. We try to combine forces by supporting our parishioners’ charitable endeavors (sponsoring Walk A Thons, Bike A Thons, etc.) whenever possible.
• Social Services Group – assist individuals/families and interface with Aspasia (Metropolis) and Paulette (National) for more expertise/resources; the 3 members research social services agencies and programs on-line and follow up with phone calls. We provide limited financial assistance and try to work with other nonprofit and local churches to assist those in need.
• AGAPE Ministry – visitations (koulourkia and a plant) to homebound primarily at Christmas and Easter; cards to those ill/hurt/condolences/special occasions; we are looking into including something special for our parishioners with Alzheimer’s Disease
• Communications –
o full written agenda goes out to all members prior to our 6-8 General Meetings by email;
o a quarterly newsletter is given out in church to highlight activities;
o periodic teleconferences for younger members who cannot attend meetings or to handle some of the committees’ business; the Executive Committee primarily communicates by teleconference or text messaging
• Membership Drive – mailing with chapter accomplishments in January; personal outreach and emails – GOAL is 100+ members
• St Nicholas and Ss. Constantine and Helen Feast Days/Vespers
• Koliva and Prosforo – conducted a class for GOYANs and their mothers; we are looking to make this a more formal and organized process
• Breast Cancer Awareness; Go Red: Heart Disease; Paint the Towns Teal Ovarian Cancer – awareness message flyer/Proskomidi
• Season of Giving from November – December – the chapter gives back to the community; involve the GOYANS as much as possibleo November – Food Drive for NJ Food Bank, tour of the food bank in Hillside NJ; Soup 4 Sale (sell avgolemono, etc to raise money for charity) – donate extra to local soup kitchen
o December – Kosta Fund (raffle and loukoumathes to raise money to a Greek paraplegic the parish befriended 20 years ago); Giving Tree (benefit 100 Newark DYFS kids); gift cards to families in need
• “With a Little Help from my Friends” Cookbook; sold 330 first printing; ordered another 100; used in raffle baskets, centerpiece of Cooking Demos with a local chef at the President’s home
• Breakfast at Bloomingdale’s Fashion Show in November (recommended by Holy Trinity Philoptochos) – we continued the Friends and Family theme by having families do the modeling (mother/daughter, granddaughters)
• Annual Cooking Demo dinner party – hosted in a private home with a professional chef cooking a seasonal menu
• Christmas and Easter Pastry/Tsoureki sales
• Psihosavato group koliva
• End of Year Dinner – every 2 years (introducing new Board/Officers), feature an after dinner speaker and raffle baskets (sometimes 50/50).
SUCCESSFUL PAST FUNDRAISERS
• Gala Art Auction (ad book and raffle baskets) – raised money for the new church building in Roseland
• Autism Awareness Luncheon – featuring speaker from an autism organization and highlighting local parishioners who work with autistic children