75th Anniversary of St. George Greek Orthodox Church in Minnesota
On October 25, 2015, the St. George Greek Orthodox community in St. Paul, Minnesota, celebrated their 75th Anniversary. We congratulate and wish them many more years as stewards of the Orthodox Faith!
See and hear the short video documentary about St. George’s history: (starts at 15 seconds)
St. George Video Documentary published 2015
In 1939, the community purchased a mansion on Summit Avenue, the same location where the Church is found today. The new Church building was constructed in 1968, and consecrated by Archbishop Iakovos in 1975.
The Greek Orthodox community in St. Paul, Minnesota originated before the year 1900. Greek immigrants had already entered the state after the American Civil War in the late 1800’s, employed by the Great Northern and Northern Pacific Railroad Companies as railroad laborers working in construction and maintenance.
They worked hard long hours, they lived on the trains and went wherever the line took them. These men withstood many hardships and deprived themselves of the simple pleasures of life because their ultimate goal was to save their money and return to Greece for the life they had been accustomed. Some of them did just that; many of the others stayed. After the March to October working season was over, they would spend their winters in St. Paul where they could find jobs not far from the Railroad employment offices. This temporary but periodic stay gave them roots and a place they could call home away from home. Little by little, the winter jobs became permanent ones and the monies saved for Greece became the nucleus of privately owned businesses. Soon other Greeks living elsewhere in the Union relocated to St. Paul with their families or started their families here.
The St. Paul Greek Community was officially recognized by the State of Minnesota on May 23, 1918. As the community grew, eventual the need was great enough to have their own church. Until then, St. Paul residents and other faithful from the surrounding areas would attend St. Mary’s Greek Orthodox Church in Minneapolis, Minnesota, about 12 miles away, across the Mississippi river.
To hear more about this community and their rich history, please visit the St. George community website
Photo and caption: from the St. George website
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