ORLANDO: The St. Paul’s Orthodox Church of Greater Orlando was consecrated and dedicated on January 22- 23 by Metropolitan Alexios Mar Eusebius of the South West American Diocese. Now St. Paul’s Orthodox Church has the biggest Church building of Malankara Orthodox Church in Florida.
The first part of the consecration has begun with evening prayers on January 22. On 23rd January the services began at 7.30 am. All the priests joined the Metropolitan in their holy vestments to assist him with the consecration. After the services the Metropolitan celebrated holy Eucharist for the first time at the newly consecrated Church.
The Metropolitan received the keys of the Church from chairman of construction committee Dr. Alexander V. Alex for the Malankara Metropolitan and handed them over to Fr. Dr. Jacob Mathew, the Vicar, who in turn handed it over to the trustee of the Church.
A public meeting was held after the consecration. John Maingot, the Mayor of the Longwood City, inaugurated the public meeting. In his speech he welcomed the Indian Orthodox community to the Longwood city. The mayor also expressed his joy over the dedication of the new church that is almost as old as Christianity in his city of Longwood, Florida.
Metropolitan Mar Eusebius in his presidential address commended on the unity among the members of the parish. He exhorted them to maintain the spirit of spreading the gospel by St.Paul in the first century. Metropolitan congratulated the Vicar, Managing Committee members and the faithful of the St. Paul’s Orthodox Church at their achievement.
Fr. P. M. Zachariah, Fr. Dr. Joy Pyngolil, Fr. George Daniel, Fr. George Paulose, Fr. Slomo Isaac George, Fr. P. M. Cherian, Fr. George John, Fr. John Hamatie of the Byzantine Antiochene church of Orlando, Dr. Aravind Pillai representing the Hindu Community of Orlando and Dn. Dennis Mathai spoke on the occasion.
The group song by the MGOCSM members of the St. Paul’s Orthodox Church literally made the occasion colorful. Hue Harling, the Engineer for the construction and John Youngman, the architect were also present at the ceremony.
Fr. Dr. Jacob Mathew, the Vicar welcomed the gathering. Dr. Alexander V. Alex, the Trustee proposed vote of Thanks. Ms. Hiba George and Ms. Hana George were the MCs.
More than 200 people and all the priests in the area attended the consecration on Friday and Saturday