“Ye know that the princes of the Gentiles exercise dominion over them,

and they that are great exercise authority upon them.

But it shall not be so among you:

but whosoever will be great among you, let him be your minister;

And whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant:

Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto,

but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.” (Matthew 20:25-28, KJV)

The word the Athenians used for their Assembly was Ekklesia, the same word used in the New Testament for Church
(and it is the greatest philological irony in all of Western history that this word,
which connoted equal participation in all deliberation by all members,
came to designate a kind of self-perpetuating, self-protective Spartan gerousia -
which would have seemed patent nonsense to Greek-speaking Christians of New Testament times,
who believed themselves to be equal members of their Assembly.)

- Thomas Cahill, Sailing the Wine-Dark Sea: Why the Greeks Matter


Friday, October 8, 2010

Nick Colessides' Response to the Metropolitan Isaiah

Nick J. Colessides
466 South 400 East # 100
Salt Lake City, Utah 84111

October 7, 2010

Via fax: 303/333-7796
Via first class mail

His Grace Metropolitan Isaiah
Metropolitan of Denver
4550 East Alameda Avenue
Denver Colorado 80246-1208

Re: Προφάσεις εν άμαρτίαις

Dear Metropolitan Isaiah,

We received today your letter dated September 16, 2010. We are very happy that Fr. Kouremetis shared with all of us your letter. Indeed a great instance of “Βαράω το σαμάρι για να ακούει ο γάϊδαρος.”

I am glad you decided to take the sampling of the stewardship revenue of our community. We have also have been aware of the downturn. It all started when at Fr. Kouremetis’ request you unceremoniously, without a hearing, in violation of the biblical strictures, kicked me out of the Parish Council; and, you imposed the several ecclesiastical sanctions. You were mistaken then; and, you are mistaken now.

Just two days before your newest incendiary letter, the Parish Council mailed us a letter stating inter alia the following: “In short, our average church steward has reduced his total monthly commitment by $189." (Emphasis added).

Obviously you are wrong in your analysis and wrong in your conclusion that “the members(1) (sic) of Holy Trinity gave virtually nothing to the Church.” You did not merely make an error in your stewardship records analysis; you cherry-picked the stewardship records in order to attempt to justify your preordained conclusion. That, dear Sir, is “voodoo” statistics; and, its presentation is a sin. [(1) In the phrasing of this particular sentence, you already in your mind, as you have for sometime now, divided us as belonging to two different “memberships.” Our forefathers demanded that we shall always be members of one Parish that has two Church edifices.]

The truth of the matter is that ever since Fr. Kouremetis arrived in our Parish, he refused to participate in and become part of our ENTIRE Parish, i.e., to include those parishioners who attend the Cathedral. Thus the “stewardship giving” started to slide downward. This Parish has never recovered from it.

The down turn in this community came under the direction of your appointee Fr. Michael Kouremetis. It is the first one that I have witnessed during the last 53 years in Salt lake City, Utah. In 2002 you appointed Fr. Kouremetis to our Parish. Ever since his arrival he became the genesis of the problem and therein lies the solution. He has denied our rights under the UPRs to seek elective office. Essentially he has made a sham of the elective process and our ability to vote for our laity leadership. He never misses an opportunity to be divisive. He isolates himself at Prophet Elias Church offices. His arrogant behavior and numerous missteps are set forth in our Eparchial Appeal and in the Audit.

What we must not ALL forget is, that we all have a chance to vote with our wallet; every day of the week. And that the “average church steward” has so performed.

And of all your insensitivity to our dear mothers and daughters; you pick upon the Cathedral Philoptochos ladies. It is a shame that you create a straw man in order to cut him down. The creation of the TWO Philoptochos Societies is Fr. Kouremetis’ creation. Είναι τα έργα τών χειρών σου. You alone initiated and nurtured division rather than unity. And, you continue in this dangerous path. Your only concern is your wish to aggrandize your position of power.

And you just verified it again. Instead of sending destructive missives, please come and talk to us. Listen to the entire Parish; talk to the entire Parish about solutions. You were mailed a copy of our appeal to the Eparchial Synod. Please take the time to read it. It contains our feelings and the solution. You were mailed a full copy of the Audit. It contains some of the causes that you are complaining about. You have again failed us in helping us achieve unity. We want our clergy to be inclusive, and not exclusive.

Please do not let this become a matter of pride. Please reassign Fr. Kouremetis to make sure that we return to a functioning Parish.

Thank you for your consideration.



One of the stewards who fits your
description of the non-givers

cc: His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios, via first class mail
Rev. Fr. Michael Kouremetis, via fax only: 801/424-1296
Rev. Fr. Matthew Gilbert, via fax only: 801/328-9688

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