Photos of the oldest Orthodox church in Texas

Way back in the summer of 2009, we went down to Houston to visit family, and while there, we made a special trip to the nearby city of Galveston. Really, my family was indulging me — I wanted to visit Saints Constantine and Helen Serbian Orthodox Church, the first Orthodox parish in Texas and one of the oldest Orthodox church buildings still in use in America. I took a bunch of photos, and I’ve been meaning to publish them here, but just haven’t gotten around to it. Until now:

Exterior photo of Ss. Constantine & Helen Church in Galveston

Ss. Constantine & Helen was founded in 1895 as a multiethnic parish of the Russian Diocese of the Aleutians.

To this day, parishioners preserve the memory of their venerable first pastor, the remarkable Greek Archimandrite Theoclitos Triantafilides. He is buried in the altar, and this gravestone can be seen on the rear exterior of the church.

These Western-looking icons of Christ and the Theotokos were donated by Tsar Nicholas II.

Tsar Nicholas II also donated this Gospel book to the Galveston parish. I was told that, during a flood, it was miraculously preserved and was found resting, unharmed, atop a nearby tombstone.

I took a lot more photos, and I may post more in the future. To learn more about the fascinating history of Ss. Constantine and Helen parish, and their legendary priest Fr. Theoclitos Triantafilides, check out this article, posted on OH.org last January.

This article was written by Matthew Namee.