Missions Ministry

“The Missions Ministry is committed to inspiring and empowering the Holy Apostles Community toward an integrated Orthodox outreach and inter-cultural witness that serves the physical and spiritual needs of all.”


This is the the current Holy Apostles Missions Ministry group. 

Please pray for us to be an inspiration for our community.



The Holy Apostles short term missionaries Elaine and Ted have safely returned from Kenya. One of their projects was to prepare baptismal fonts.

Archbishop Makarios of Kenya inspects a completed baptismal font that will be used for baptisms of persons of all ages outside the Orthodox Church of St Luke the Evangelist in Nairobi.

St Luke was a physician and healer of the body. At St Luke’s church, Archbishop Makarios will be a healer of souls.


Thank you Elaine and Ted


Holy Apostles Parishioners Arrive in Kenya


Elaine and Ted, OCMC short term missionaries and Holy Apostles Parishioners, share photos from some of their experiences in Kenya.


Building Batismal Fonts for Missionary Churches in Africa


Pray for Elaine and Ted




On February 7, 2020, Holy Apostles Goya pulls together and help at Dupage PADs

This important ministry requires participants to prepare a dinner, breakfast and lunch bag for individuals and families who have been accepted for assistance by DuPage PADS.

The evening begins with setting up bedding

Tables are set before the meal.

A message from Steve Milak, Chairman of the Holy Apostles Greek Orthodox Missions Committee.

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ

Today, Sunday January 12, 2020, after the Divine Liturgy, the Fathers kindly remembered the Missions Ministry. I was called to come up and receive a piece on behalf of the ministry and all members.

The piece cut for the Missions Ministry received the coin!

This was on the heels of a very successful Feed6 event, just yesterday, which had 384 volunteers, raised over $31,000, and packed 100,656 meals.

In Christ,



Feed6 2020 reaches the 100,000 meal mark AGAIN!

Mr Alex helps train Elisabeth.



Feed6 training session starts in the Nave




Family, friends and community volunteers working together


Team and shift leaders take a well deserved lunch break



Thank you GOYANS!                 Thank you BOY SCOUTS!


$31,000+ DONATIONS


100,656 MEALS!




December 2019 DuPagePads  enlists young Holy ApostlesVolunteers

On December 6th, 14 Holy Apostles parishioners of varying ages prepared a hot meal for the guests at the Hinsdale PADs location. The Holy Apostles team members set up beds for 25 men, women and children, prepared and served dinner, prepared lunch for the next day, and warmly welcomed the guests. 

Many of the HA team members met new people and all enjoyed serving side by side. The guests were kind and very grateful for our service. 

This important ministry asks our parishioners to purchase and prepare food for persons PADs identified have need. The food is served for dinner and for breakfast. A bag lunch is made available as a departing meal.

Parishioners can join future PADS teams from the Hoy Apostles Sign Up Genius (see link below)




Mr. Jesse Brandow, a long term Orthodox Missionary in Guatemala

returns to Holy Apostles Greek Orthodox Church.

Jesse Brandow, a long term Othrodox Missionary serving in Guatemala, returns to visit Holy Apostles.

Here is a 5 minute segement of his November 2019 sermon

While in Guatemala, Jesse also is continuing the online ministry that he began during his initial travels to Guatemala in 2012. Jesse created the website http://www.mayanorthodoxy.com/ for the joy and inspiration of the Church.


Holy Apostles Parishioners Volunteer for DuPagePads November 2019


Once again Holy Apostles parishioners joined DuPagePads in November of 2019 to provide assistance for the overnight stay at the Hinsdale Bible Church.


DuPagePads is dedicated to the overnight assistance of individuals who fell into misfortune. Volunteers are assigned an overnight shelter. They not only prepare and serve meals but must arrange clean bedding for an overnight stay.

Holy Apostles is dedicated to serving the community. Please volunteer for DuPagePads, this most worthwhile service. For information please contact the Holy Apostles office.






Partnership Team Rubicon and Saint Bernard Project in Houston, Texas

(Construction/renovation of devastated sites from Hurricane Harvey)

Information session scheduled for

Sunday October 27, 2019 in the

GOYA room after liturgy


Participant ages 16+ (15 if with parent/guardian).

Monday, March 30, 2020 – Saturday, April 2, 2020 (traveling by air)


Accommodations:        (Monday night – Saturday morning)

Classrooms at St George Antiochian Church.

(Off site accommodations discouraged)

Kitchen & air mattresses/bedding provided

Meals served at St. George with one restaurant group meal outing

Transportation to and from airport provided by local team

4 day construction project begins Tuesday and is completed Friday (training and oversight by regional IOCC partner contractors).

Workday is typically from 8 AM to 4 PM but may vary slightly depending on partner and project. After hours free at own expense.

Wrap up Saturday and departure.

Recommended group size 20-30 parishioners


COSTS:  Fees $100 per person - suggested IOCC donation to cover cost of meals and housing.  Additional voluntary donations are welcome.

Airfare (currently non-stops about $450. If applicable will advise about group airfare rates)



Holy Apostles Parishioners Volunteer for



On Friday October 4 2019 Holy Apostles parishioners joined DuPagePads to provide assistance for the overnight stay at the Hinsdale Bible Church.

DuPagePads is dedicated to the overnight assistance of individuals who fell into misfortune. Volunteers are assigned an overnight shelter. They not only prepare and serve meals but must arrange clean bedding for an overnight stay.

The shelter is has at least two sleeping areas, one for men and the other for women. Special accommodations can be arranged for children with their mothers.

The volunteers must register the participants before allowing entrance to the shelter and verify the picture IDs issued to them by DuPagePads.

The facility has a kitchen to cook and warm food. Meals are served for about an hour after which the volunteers must clean the serving area and wash the dishes, pots and serving utensils.

The night shift oversees the groups while they sleep. In the morning breakfast is served by volunteers and a take away bag lunch is provided before the session is finished.


Holy Apostles is dedicated to serving the community. Please volunteer for DuPagePads, this most worthwhile service. For information please contact the Holy Apostles office.



Holy Apostles Team to participate in Project

Mexico and St. Innocent Orphanage outreach

June 16 – June 22, 2020!

Fr John Tsikalas and Ms Thania Panopoulos shared the exciting details of the upcoming June 2020 Project Mexico mission trip with interested parishioners following the Divine Liturgy on September 29, 2019.

Parishioners are invited to be part of a team which will construct a home in Rosarito, Mexico, just south of the San Diego, USA – Mexico border. Dates for the project are June 16-June 22, 2020.

Fr John brings a wealth of experience with Project Mexico having spent many summers working  there prior to his ordination.  

Parishioners will arrive in San Diego, obtain rental vans and proceed south of the border into Mexico.  Project Mexico representatives will accompany our team to the 16 acre St Innocent boys orphanage. This is a concrete gated and guarded facility where the team will be staying in tents (brought by the team). Facilities and kitchen utilities will be made available. The meals will be predominately regional/Mexican and some food allergy accommodations may be possible. Drinking water is from a purifier system.

After a Tuesday arrival and blessing, the foundation of the house is set on Wednesday. Thursday the walls are erected, Friday the roof is set and stucco applied. Saturday finishing touches are completed. After Sunday Liturgy   the team will enjoy some well-earned free time!  The return is planned for Monday, June 22. 

For more information please see the Project Mexico website or reach out to the missions committee via the church office.



Holy Apostles Parishioners show strong support for missions at the 2019 Holy Apostles Ministry Fare

The Holy Apostles Mission Committee had a booth detailing past and future mission outreach projects for the Holy Apostles community.

While there is continued interest to continue and amplify our present missionary projects (local meal and overnight sleeping projects, short and long term mission team support, etc.) the committee has launched initiatives to have outreach projects outside of Illinois.

We hope to participate in IOCC's US disaster preparedness and response program


Click here for information regarding IOCC's US disaster preparedness and response program



There was significant interest regarding opportunities for Project Mexico

Click here for information regarding Project Mexico

Please support and pray that Holy Apostles Missions Committee can be successful with their undertakings


Holy Apostles Parishioners Serve DuPagePads

Founded in 1985, DuPagePads is the largest provider of interim and permanent housing, coupled with support services in order to help individuals work toward a place to call home.

Holy Apostles parish volunteers were responsible for the Naperville site Friday night meal May 17th and for the breakfast Saturday May 18th

Holy Apostles team shopped, prepared and served a fully cooked meal to a group of individuals and families who are struggling in between permanent housing.



The group was also responsible for purchasing, preparing and serving breakfast the next morning.


All who participated were energized and inspired by this Christian outreach. 

For I was hungry, and you gave me to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave me drink; I was a stranger, and you took me in (Matthew 25:35).

Parishioners who wish to join in the next outreach contact the missions committee of Holy Apostles or Father Nicholas.

The difference between DuPagePads and Beds is that meals are prepared on site for DuPagePads. The cook teams for Beds purchase and prepare meals at home or as a team using the Holy Apostles kitchen. The pre-prepared meals are delivered by our parishioners to another group overseeing the shelter.

Holy Apostles mission team is trying to provide a variety of opportunities for cook teams to serve this vital ministry.



Krishti u Ngjall! (Christ is Risen!)

The Hoppe long term missionaries to Albania host the 2019 Bible Bowl

Holy Apostles, as a parish, are helping the Hoppes who are long term orthodox misionaries to Albania. They enjoyed Holy Week and Pascha. On Lazarus' Saturday they had the bible bowl for the teenagers on the gospel of Matthew Here is a video from that event.




Nathan Hoppe, long term orthodox missionary to Albania is talking to the “young adult group” at the Cathedral of Christ's Resurrection in Tirana. He spoke to them about The Ladder of Divine Ascent of Righteous Father John Klimacus whose memory was celebrated on Fourth Sunday of Lent (April 7, 2019).


The Righteous Father John is called "Klimacus" due to his authorship of the great spiritual work “The Ladder of Divine Ascent”. His commemoration affirms him as a supreme bearer and proponent of Christian asceticism. The ascetic example of this great Saint of the Church inspires us in our Lenten journey.

Holy Apostles Parishioners cook Team

deliver meals to Beds overnight shelter





Shoes that Grow 2019 Holy Apostles Makaronatha missions awareness event

The Holy Apostles Parish Council graciously sponsored the 2019 Cheesefare Maranonatha on Sunday March 10, 2019. The annual event kicks off the Lenten season. The multipurpose room was fill to near capacity as the board members served delicious Makaronia to the parish and guests.

The event supported the “Shoes that Grow” project, a community wide initiative to provide 350 pairs of expandable shoes to the orphan children of St. Clements Orthodox School in Kenya. These specially designed shoes that have the ability to be adjusted up to five shoe sizes.

A special Lenten almsgiving calendar was also distributed to Sunday School students so that they may grow in awareness of missions and our brothers and sisters living in poverty.


Mr. Jesse Brandow,

a long term Orthodox Missionary in Guatemala visits Holy Apostles Greek Orthodox Church.


Jesse Brandow has been serving for two years in Guatemala where he lives in Aguacate in the department of Huehuetenango. Jesse, a graduate of St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary, uses his training to teach and preach in the parishes in Guatemala and Southern Mexico. He also provides liturgical guidance to the priests. While in Guatemala, Jesse also is continuing the online ministry that he began during his initial travels to Guatemala in 2012. Jesse created the website Mayan Orthodoxy for the joy and inspiration of the Church.

At Holy Apostles Jesse delivered an inspiring sermon proclaiming the important role Orthodox Missionaries play in propagating the word of Christ to all nations.

Segment from the long term orthodox missionary Jessie Bandow's sermon to Holy Apostles congregation

After Liturgy Jesse took time to have a conversation with the youth of our community and then enjoyed a fellowship lunch with Holy Apostles parishioners and faithful that visited Holy Apostles to hear his inspirational message.



Archbishop Anastasios of Albania

surrounded by

Sunday School Children at the Cathedral of Tirana



The Hoppe long term missionaries in Albania are present when Archbishop Anastasios is surrounded by Sunday School Students who sing for him


Archbishop Anastasios of Albania greets Sunday School Children

The Hoppe long term missionaries in Albania attend the Sunday school performance of “Father Abraham” with Archbishop Anastasios



Hoppe Greeting


Gabriela Hoppe Teaches Sunday School

Nathan Hoppe educates teenagers about the image of God

Albanian families share an evening of relaxation and fellowship with the Hoppe missionaries

Hoppe OCMC Missionaries reach out to the Community of Bathore Albania

On Saturday January 26, 2019 the Hoppe OCMC missionaries attended Divine Liturgy in the neighborhood of Bathore. The Hoppes have reached out to this community. What followed is the cutting of the Vasilopita (St. Basil cake) and the water blessing of the worship space and homes.



Bathore comprises approximately 2 square miles in a location north of the capital Tirana and was originally a state-run farm.

Holy Apostles Greek Orthodox Church continues to send monetary support to the Hoppes. Please pray for the Hoppe Missionaries as they continue to bring Orthodox Christian witness in Albania.


January 24 BEDS cook team delivery


                            Delivery to the site

January 2019 Feed6 Event

On January 12th, over 400 volunteers from the Holy Apostles community came together to pack highly nutritious meals for the food insecure within the Chicagoland area. At the conclusion of the event, 111,888 meals had been packed. To date, this means that the church community has packaged over a quarter million meals for the needy (2017 = 68,000+ meals, 2018 = 101,000+ meals, 2019 = 111,000+ meals).

Dupage Pads Outreach Pictures from November

This is a photo of one of the Holy Apostles teams while preparing dinner for the guests. Overall, 19 families, consisting of 52 adults and children, came early in the morning, during the dinner hour, or overnight, to serve those that are in need at this time in their lives.

Click here to see a summary of the 2018 activities.

Pictures of the Holy Apostles Missionaries - Ted and Eleni Karamatskos's Work in Kenya

This is a photo of the baptismal font our fellow parishioner Ted Karamatsikos has constructed at the Orthodox mission in Kenya.




Video Messages from the Hoppe Missionary Family in Albania!

Here are some videos from the Hoppes', a missionary family in Albania, that Holy Apostles has been supporting for the past few years.


In this video, Gabriella Hoppe is taking youth on a pilgrimage to a cave. While at the cave, they turn out the lights and discuss how oftentimes life can feel dark. Then, they turn on a light and discuss how it cuts through the darkness and enables us to see. She makes the point that this is how the light of Christ can work in our lives.


Here Gabriella shows the children singing Christmas carols in a family ministry.


In this next video, Gabriella shows the work of a family ministry and how they are making crafts for Christmas. Additionally, each family receives a book explaining the mystery of Christmas and the meaning of the different ornaments on their trees.


Here Gabriella gives an update on a study group, centered around the Divine Liturgy, taking place at the Cathederal in Tirana, Albania.









Saints, Feasts, and Readings for 06/29/2022

Peter and Paul, the Holy Apostles
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