Metropolitan Philip's Letter to St. George Parish, Troy MI
September 30, 2009
The Very Reverend Father Joseph Antypas
The Parish Council of St. George Orthodox Church
2160 East Maple Road
Troy, Michigan 48083
Dear Father Joseph and Esteemed Members of the Parish Council:
Greetings and blessings to you and your beloved families in the. Name of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.
Over the past several weeks, many claims have caused a storm of controversy in your community. After many meetings and discussions, questions have been asked
and answered. It is conclusive that no financial improprieties have taken place and it is time to move forward with a sense of unity and harmony in order to continue your mission of serving the greater Detroit area.
St. George of Detroit is a very dear parish to me. It is the first parish I served when I came to these blessed shores of the United States in 1956. I have known Father
Joseph Antypas for more than thirty years. I watched him receive his education from St. Vladimir’s Seminary and graduate summa cum laude. As a matter of fact,
before his graduation, the late Father Alexander Schmemman, Dean of St. Vladimir’s Seminary at that time, asked me if I would permit Deacon Joseph to
remain and teach at the seminary. Because of my need for priests of Father Joseph’s quality, I did not grant Father Schmemman’s request. As Metropolitan of
this God-protected Archdiocese, I have full confidence in the leadership of Father Joseph. I fully support Father Joseph Antypas and the ministry of the parish
council, chaired by Mr. Neal Norgrove, I urge the priest and the parish council to remain steadfast, committed in full cooperation and unwavering in fulfilling their
spiritual and financial duties to St. George Parlsh.
The question of financial management and auditing is not something new. At our recent Archdiocesan Convention in California, this past July, the issue of auditing
was brought up and was turned over to the Archdiocese Board of Trustees to make a final decision. In order for this matter to be rectified, the proper procedure must
be followed and will happen only when all churches of our God-protected Archdiocese comply, not just large parishes or those selected at random. It is my sincere hope and prayer that the good people of St. George will continue
to minister to their community and that everyone will work together in harmony with your pastor and parish council.
I will check my schedule to plan a visit to St. George parish in the near future.
Your Father in Christ,
The Self-Ruled Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese
of North America