Tag: San Francisco


What was the first Orthodox parish in America?


The question, "What was the first Orthodox parish in America?" is surprisingly difficult to answer. A big part of the problem comes from that word, "parish." What is a parish? When does a collection of Orthodox people become a "parish"? It's a matter of interpretation, and particularly in the early...

Photo of Unidentified San Francisco Priest


I was browsing in the wonderful photo collection at Alaska's Digital Archives the other day when I ran across the above photo, which was titled, "3/4 length seated portrait of unidentified priest." Who was he? The bottom of the photo gives us a clue, of course: the name "Weitz" (probably...

This week in American Orthodox history (March 12-18)


This week is a busy one: March 14, 1767: Philip Ludwell III, the first Orthodox convert in American history, died in London. Decades earlier, in 1738, Ludwell had joined the Orthodox Church in London. He was just 22 at the time, and was a rising star in the Virginia aristocracy....

This week in American Orthodox history (March 5-11)


March 10, 1866: The future Archbishop Arseny Chagovtsov was born in Kharkov, in what was then the Russian Empire and what is today Ukraine. A widowed priest, he became a monk and came to America in 1903 to serve in the Russian North American Mission. He was instrumental in the...

The Third Greek Church of San Francisco


Jim Lucas is the president of the Greek Historical Society of the San Francisco Bay Area, a non-profit corporation based at Annunciation Cathedral in San Francisco. The organization is dedicated to the preservation of Greek history and culture in the San Francisco area.  Jim has been actively researching the history...

From Harvard MD to Orthodox priest: the Fr. Pythagoras Caravellas story


    Editor's note: The following article was written by relatives of Fr. Pythagoras Caravellas, and originally appeared in the 60th anniversary commemorative album for Annunciation Greek Orthodox Cathedral in San Francisco, published in 1996. The article has been reprinted at Annunciation Cathedral's website, and we present it here courtesy...

Fr. Sava Matanovich: the first Serbian Orthodox priest in America


Just a brief note today: I had always assumed that Fr. Sebastian Dabovich was the first Serbian Orthodox priest in America, but apparently he wasn't. The first Serbian priest in America -- and probably the first Serbian priest the California-born Dabovich had ever seen -- was Fr. Sava Matanovich. From...

Three bishops for America in 1870?


This article was originally published on October 30, 2009. On July 19, 1870, a Philadelphia newspaper called the North American and United States Gazette published the following report: The Russian Ambassador has received instructions from his government that three bishoprics of the Greek Church are to be established forthwith in...

Fr. Sebastian Dabovich on St. Innocent of Alaska


Editor's note: The following lecture was given by Fr. Sebastian Dabovich on August 15, 1897 to the parish school St. Sergius in San Francisco, in the presence of Bishop Nicholas Ziorov. The occasion was the 100th anniversary of the birth of St. Innocent Veniaminov, the great Alaskan missionary and later Metropolitan of...

The Greeks in America, 1873


Editor's note: The following article appeared in the New York Times on August 4, 1873. That's nearly two decades before Greek immigrants began to flood into America. According to the book Race, Ethnicity, and Place in a Changing America, only 217 immigrants came from Greece to the US in the...