Recession toughens faith communities

I enjoyed speaking to your reporter, Kathleen McLaughlin. However, her article ["Building on a prayer," in the
May 25 issue] contains an error that requires correction.

The statement that "Holy Trinity Greek Christian Orthodox Church proceeded with its northward
migration from 40th and Pennsylvania streets to western Carmel even though it isn’t necessarily growing"—is
not correct. At no time during our phone interview did I say or imply that Holy Trinity is not growing.
Growth was one of the reasons for the move.

This past Lent and Holy Week saw all manner of new faces coming through our doors. If anything, we now have the additional
welcome challenge of managing this growth—since expanding our outreach is what our faith is about. And, to be sure,
the contributions made by these new "faces" have helped bolster our finances,
too.

Another
unanticipated bright spot has also been an explosion of volunteerism within our parish. Perhaps this
never would have happened if the economic downturn had not made it necessary to
consider this alternative option. So, contrary to the somewhat grim picture painted
by McLaughlin, I predict that these challenges will be an opportunity for spiritual renewal and rededication
to the values of family, church and community.

Holy Trinity was founded by a small group of immigrants in 1910. It and its people have weathered
discrimination, war, economic depression and more–and have always come through with flying colors. And
lest we forget, Christianity has always thrived best during time of adversity and even outright persecution.

Father Anastasios Gounaris

Pastor

Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church

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