With the blessing of Archbishop Elpidophoros of America and Bishop Apostolos of Medeia, more than 100 people attended “Women In Orthodoxy” on Saturday, March 11, the New Jersey Lenten Retreat of the Order of Saint Andrew the Apostle, Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate.
The talented panel of speakers was led by Archon George E. Demacopoulos, Ph.D., John Meyendorff, and Patterson Family Chair of Orthodox Christian Studies at Fordham University. The panel included Patricia Fann Bouteneff, D. Phil., the President of Axia Women; Kassandra Ibrahim, an MA candidate, and graduate of the Fordham Orthodox Christian Studies Center, as well as President of the Orthodox Christian Fellowship (OCF) at Fordham; Anita Kartalopoulos, Esq., National Vice President of the Greek Orthodox Ladies Philoptochos Society, Inc.; and Kyra Limberakis, MTS, Chief Operating Officer of Orthodox Volunteer Corps and niece of Dr. Anthony J. Limberakis, National Commander of the Order of Saint Andrew the Apostle. This distinguished panel discussed the historical roles played by women in our faith while outlining the important roles assumed by women in today’s church.
Archon George A. Tsougarakis, Esq., Regional Commander for the Metropolis of New Jersey, stated: “One aspect that made this program particularly gratifying was the inclusion of our young adults, who comprised about half the audience. We had a number of Archons bring their children and grandchildren, and this allowed for a multigenerational exploration of our faith (the New Jersey Young Adult League, YAL, provided the remainder of the nearly 50 young adults in attendance). This was a significant step in communicating the importance of the Archons’ mission to young people.”
Instrumental in the success of the event were Archon Peter Tarhanidis, who handled a great deal of the organizational responsibilities; Archon Anthony Papamarkos of The Graycliff, who generously provided all the food at no cost to the Order, and Archon Demacopoulos for his expert direction of the panel. Fantis Foods, Inc. and Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church of Westfield, New Jersey also provided invaluable service to ensure the success of this groundbreaking retreat.